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User information for John Smith

Real Name John Smith   
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Nickname SBlat
Email Concealed by request
ICQ None given.
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Homepage http://
Signed On Apr 8, 2009, 18:16
Total Comments 168 (Novice)
User ID 54883
 
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News Comments > On Sale
8. Re: On Sale Jan 1, 2010, 17:51 SBlat
 
JaZeeL wrote on Jan 1, 2010, 15:48:
I picked up ME for $5 on steam back in November.

I think you'll find it was $10. Unless you mean Mirror's Edge .

Anyway, $5 is a great price for Mass Effect. I bought it back in November too, and have really enjoyed it.

Looks like Wendy's have ended their EA store promotion, so you can't pick up Pinnacle Station for free anymore. But that DLC isn't even really worth registering an EA Store account for, to be honest.

Bring Down The Sky is still free as always from Bioware for registering the game with them (if you're wondering why Steam lets you view a CD Key for this single player game, that's why). I'm saving it for my second play through.

Prez wrote on Jan 1, 2010, 15:06:
I'm disappointed with Impulse. I thought for sure Stardock would run some really good sales over the holidays...

Well, they did do their adware users-only promotions. I don't think they've ever been able to match Steam when it comes to absolutely outrageous price cuts though, and the Holiday Sale at Steam is an especially bad time to try to compare them. They're actually still doing pop-up ad promos, but they've been pretty weak. Civ 4 Complete for $25 the same day Steam cut the price to $13, or Sins of A Solar Empire today for $10, with no expansions included.

This comment was edited on Jan 1, 2010, 17:57.
 
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News Comments > On Sale
6. Re: On Sale Dec 31, 2009, 13:54 SBlat
 
Nameless wrote on Dec 31, 2009, 13:35:
Regarding activations on Crysis, I don't remember ever having to "activate" my retail copy. I just typed in the key and got busy with the stealth armor.

The retail copy doesn't have Securom, but Steam does. And Warhead has Securom no matter where you get it. But it's $13 for both on Steam, so I'm wondering how annoying/bypassable it is. Does it even include a revocation tool on Steam?

The DRM is making me think I'll probably skip it since it's steadily decreasing in price anyway. So I might as well wait for it to get even cheaper, especially since the demo didn't just grab me gameplay-wise.
 
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News Comments > On Sale
4. Re: On Sale Dec 31, 2009, 13:19 SBlat
 
The Crysis bundle seems like a good price, but I don't want a game with limited activations permanently stuck on my Steam list when they run out. How easy is it to bypass activation when Steam's involved? Does it give you a chance to replace the executables with cracked copies, or does it automatically remove that game if activation fails during install?

DG wrote on Dec 31, 2009, 10:39:
On second thoughts, check retail instead - UK's play.com have the complete edition for half Steam's sale price (though it doesn't use CDKeys so can't be activated on Steam AFAIK; however little steam advantage since since patch it doesn't even have cdcheck now).

You have to be careful though. In Europe/UK there was a "complete" edition released before Colonization came out, which many stores (and even the DD site GamersGate) are still selling, and that's what's so cheap on play.com. The Steam bundle is the same as the new, world-wide-availability complete edition, with Colonization included.

Here in the US, boxed copies just haven't dropped much on the real complete edition -- Best Buy had it for $30 a month or two ago and Amazon matched that price briefly, but it hasn't gone down even that far since. GoGamer has sold a "complete" edition for $10 a few times, but again that was a European-import edition without Colonization.

I jumped on the Steam deal when I saw it -- I own a boxed copy of vanilla Civ 4, and it looks like the complete edition ships with the same un-updated tech tree poster and doesn't even include a printed manual, so I'm not missing out on any pack-ins I don't already own. Well worth the savings over a boxed copy!

P.S. The presence of a cdkey doesn't guarantee registration on Steam -- only a very few games support that, and they presumably have to arrange some sort of profit sharing with Valve.
 
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News Comments > On Sale
14. Re: On Sale Dec 30, 2009, 14:14 SBlat
 
nin wrote on Dec 30, 2009, 14:01:
And another crappy day of Steam sales...

Maybe for you, but I think L4D, Max Payne, and Civ 4 are all very good games.

I personally already own most of them, but these are very good prices for very good games if you don't have them yet.

Civ 4 Complete was on my wishlist for this sale, and $14 is even cheaper than I hoped! Now I can finally try those mods that require the expansions
 
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News Comments > On Sale
22. Re: On Sale Dec 29, 2009, 22:55 SBlat
 
The Prey CD key thing is interesting, and sure looks like it's more complicated than just running out of keys. When Steam ran out of Stalker keys they just put up a witty message and allowed continued ordering with the caveat that you would have to wait for new keys before playing. But with Prey the store page is still showing a message that seems doubtful about whether they'll ever get keys and start selling it again, even at regular price. It can't just be that they were unable to contact the publishers for more keys before the sale ended, or that the publishers are annoyed at Steam -- they're the same publishers who had to be contacted to agree to the Bioshock sale.

I wonder if it has something to do with 3D Realms closing down, or 2K's lawsuit against 3D Realms. Maybe 2K isn't willing to provide more keys if it will help fund 3D Realms' defense .
 
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News Comments > On Sale
4. Re: On Sale Dec 23, 2009, 23:06 SBlat
 
Coolone wrote on Dec 23, 2009, 22:19:
Hey Blue, the Demigod sale ended a while ago. As soon as you click "Add to Cart" on the site, it says the sale is over and jacks up the price back to $30

Same with assassin's creed, elven legacy, galactic civilizations 2, prototype, and spore. Lightweight ninja and xcom are still working for one more hour. And the Civ4 Complete URL should be http://www.stardock.com/media/mailers/CIVIVCOM.htm (not CIVIV.htm -- that leads to a dead coupon)

Also, GamersGate has King's Bounty and the expansion pack for 50% off, but only separately, with no discount on the bundle. That's a one-day sale that ends tomorrow morning, though. Steam's bundle is $2 cheaper at $30 anyway.
 
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News Comments > On Sale
49. Re: On Sale Dec 23, 2009, 15:15 SBlat
 
Prez wrote:
Bear in mind that GTAIV requires Rockstar Social Club, GFWL, and Steam if bought off this sale. That's a bit ridiculous ...

The xliveless replacement for xlive.dll removes Social club and GFWL (it doesn't start social club, and it doesn't even ask if you want to login to GFWL). Running LaunchGTAIV.exe directly doesn't require Steam to be running (no Steam checks). With GTA4 you can view Steam as nothing other than a download manager, if you want (actually you'll need to launch it once through Steam to make sure everything gets installed).
 
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News Comments > On Sale
42. Re: On Sale Dec 23, 2009, 13:02 SBlat
 
You have the same specs as me, except a faster processor and probably a less aged and fragmented OS install. It runs great, and is worth buying. Aside from how much fun you'll have (it's as good as any of the other GTAs once you learn to start ignoring the people phoning you every 5 minutes to go play pool), it's worth it just to marvel at how much work went into the game. One little touch that really surprised me is when you're listening to the radio in your car and you get a call in-game, it plays the GSM buzz over the car's speakers before ringing the phone!  
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News Comments > On Sale
36. Re: On Sale Dec 23, 2009, 12:01 SBlat
 
Nameless wrote:
I've always enjoyed the GTA series and am tempted to get GTA 4 while it's on sale. But I'm weary about all the crap I heard during it's launch, ie. bloatware, game crashing bugs, extremely poor performance, etc. Are these things still an issue or did the patches finally clean things up? I know the bloatware is still going to be on board, but is the game even playable?

The patches have made it quite a bit better. With a GTX 260, 4GB of RAM, and an older quad-core (higher number of cores apparently helps a lot for GTA4) I can't turn everything up to maximum, but it still looks very good, the shadows especially. I think a few things are set to medium or high instead of very high, and viewdistance has to remain around 1/3 of max to keep the predicted video memory usage down below 896MB. But aside from very long loading times when loading a game, it runs smoothly and has noticably improved with each patch.

You should have a gamepad for the driving though. It works on the keyboard, and is still very controllable, but using something with analog steering and analog acceleration and braking makes it tons more fun. One of the patches added support for DirectInput, so it doesn't have to be an XBOX360 controller, but the analog acceleration and braking on the 360's triggers is really nice.

You can avoid the stupid and pointless rockstar social club thing by launching the game's .exe directly (even on the Steam copy, and it doesn't require Steam be running either), and adding a 3rd party DLL called xliveless will remove GFWL, though you won't be able to play online.

Saint's Row 2 is more fun, but that's an example of a game that shipped with even more problems that never got fixed after launch.
 
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News Comments > On Sale
32. Re: On Sale Dec 23, 2009, 11:08 SBlat
 
Krovven wrote:
none of the Interplay games are on sale...and really wish they would get Freespace 2 on Steam. If they had an Interplay catalog bundle on sale I'd snap it up.

You really owe it to yourself to setup a GOG account (as in, enter your email address) and download the free Tex Murphy pack to see how excellently their setup works. No autopatching, but are you really expecting a new Freespace patch to come out? The two Freespaces together are $7.78 through some time in January.

There's also a couple of games I've noticed that are on sale on both Steam and GOG, and the GOG copy is about $0.10-$0.50 more... but still worth it, I think.
 
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News Comments > On Sale
18. Re: On Sale Dec 23, 2009, 01:39 SBlat
 
xXBatmanXx has good advice about waiting until Jan. 3 to buy anything that isn't a daily deal.

Make sure you check bundles associated with games too. There's some ridiculous savings like LOOM for $2.50 vs. a bundle of LOOM, The Dig, Indy 3, and Indy 4 for the same $2.50. If you want to see Steam's games sorted by price, a Google Spreadsheet of all the prices was posted to reddit; it can sort by price (column C) or savings (column D), and is much quicker than Steam's bogged down servers.

Several of the Impulse deals above are dead. Looks like Assassin's Creed, Demigod, Elven Legacy, GC2, Prototype, and Spore are all over (even though the promotion page remains, the coupon is dead when added to the cart).

Civilization 4 Complete on Impulse is at a new URL: CIVIVCOM instead of just CIVIV. The one linked in the post is the old (dead) vanilla Civ 4 deal which Impulse accidentally advertised as being the complete edition. To make up for it they added the deal on the real complete edition which will be displayed on the 24th, but it's already active now if you go to the page. It's $20, which is cheaper than Steam currently has it.

I wonder why Microsoft thinks people would use a store that you can't even see prices for in a web browser. It's not worth installing the client to check, BTW. As an example, Viva Pinata (even at 50% off!) is still more expensive than amazon's everyday price for a boxed copy. And Shadowrun seems to be on sale for $1-$3 every weekend at gogamer.
 
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News Comments > Out of the Blue
3. Re: Out of the Blue Dec 20, 2009, 17:03 SBlat
 
We got hit with out first real snowbird of the season

In the southwest, "snowbird" is what all the retirees are called who come down in their RVs during the winter to escape the cold. Interesting to see another use.
 
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News Comments > Crysis Wars Holiday Trial Underway
2. Re: Crysis Wars Holiday Trial Underway Dec 20, 2009, 10:56 SBlat
 
They want you to pay to play a shooter online? LOL!

They don't charge monthly fees or anything to people who own the game. It's just that right now there's a week long demo going on for people who don't own the game. Like Valve is doing this weekend with TF2. Unless you're comparing it to something like BF Heroes.
 
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News Comments > On Sale
8. Re: On Sale Dec 19, 2009, 00:34 SBlat
 
A bundle of Machinarium (Win+Mac+Linux) + Samorost 2 (Win+Mac+Linux) + soundtracks for both is available directly from the developer for $10, runs until Christmas.

Impulse also have Machinarium alone for $7, don't know when that expires. It's part of their campaign of 1-day-sales only advertised if you allow them to display pop-up ads on your desktop. Some other "mailers" for sales they seem to have put up ahead of time (with the coupons already active) are Spore, Civ IV, Elven Legacy, Prototype, Assassin's Creed, X-Com, Lightweight Ninja, and Dark Void (Preorder).

Creston: Demigod's coupon expired last night (EDIT: And GC2's coupon is expired as I write this), the others will presumably expire 24 hours after they become "live" in the ad client, but they're already working ahead of time.

Does anyone have any experience with the EA store RE: DRM? skyguy's link to a link just mentions that RA3 has 5 activations. Are all the games in EA's store the same? NFS: Shift + a random $10 game is kind of appealing for $20 after discounts and a $5 coupon.

This comment was edited on Dec 19, 2009, 00:35.
 
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News Comments > Steam Torchlight Patched
2. Re: Steam Torchlight Patched Dec 18, 2009, 19:29 SBlat
 
I could've waited 2 weeks and got this gem for only $10?!

Just imagine how all the people who decided to buy it for $10 from encore.com two weeks ago feel. I'd say getting it on Steam is something you'll be happier about than having paid $10 for a non-Steam, no-achievements, limited-activation copy.

Though for maximum distress, Steam should have made this next week's midweek sale. There would be a ton of people who had paid the exact same price on D2D just a day before.
 
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News Comments > Borderlands DLC Released
2. Re: Borderlands DLC Dec 9, 2009, 15:10 SBlat
 
Even the Steam copy has a 5-machine activation limit. Weird, since they got rid of Securom for the base Borderlands game on Steam.  
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News Comments > More Borderlands DLC Hints
5. Re: More Borderlands DLC Hints Dec 9, 2009, 14:22 SBlat
 
God I hope you're kidding.

http://store.steampowered.com/app/8990/ -- $10, or 1/3 the price of the full game when I preordered it, or 50% the price of the full game if you bought it on Black Friday.

Maybe there is an activation limit also on Borderlands proper, and they just forgot to list it? I doubt it though, since Securom-encoded games usually scream when I try to load them without quiting Process Explorer first (grumble, grumble).
 
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News Comments > More Borderlands DLC Hints
3. Re: More Borderlands DLC Hints Dec 9, 2009, 14:14 SBlat
 
Just saw the popup ad on steam for the Zombie Island DLC. Wow, I didn't realise how expensive console DLC was... And what's with the Securom DRM and 5 activations limit on the DLC, when the game itself doesn't have that?

EDIT: And then I reloaded Steam again (waiting for Monkey Island Chapter 5 to come out...), and it started updating Borderlands, so I guess there's some sort of patch out.

This comment was edited on Dec 9, 2009, 14:16.
 
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News Comments > Impulse Top Sellers
17. Re: Impulse Top Sellers Dec 8, 2009, 00:03 SBlat
 
Impulse already supports any sort of DRM the publisher wants, from Securom to TAGES, just as well as Steam does. If the publisher doesn't provide DRM Impulse doesn't provide any additional DRM like with Steam's per-run authentication checks, but they do still enforce authentication and activation checks before installing or updating.

Stardock has always made the claim that their own games don't include DRM, but that's only because they're using a very... unique definition of DRM.

This comment was edited on Dec 8, 2009, 00:04.
 
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News Comments > On Sale
2. Re: On Sale Dec 7, 2009, 19:22 SBlat
 
Anyone bummed about missing Torchlight on D2D UK (it switched to Section 8 20 minutes ago) should check D2D US on the 21st. Looks like they're going to have Torchlight for 50% off ($10), with no region restrictions.

Though I think I'm going to wait for Steam to have a sale. Does D2D even have last month's 1.2 update up yet?

Just looked at Direct2Drive's twitter and Manhunt 2 is 50% off and the Empire Earth games are 75% off until the end of the year. Why is Steam the only site that gives a list of their sales?

This comment was edited on Dec 7, 2009, 21:50.
 
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168 Comments. 9 pages. Viewing page 5.
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