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User information for Ecthelion

Real Name Ecthelion   
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Nickname Ecthelion
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Signed On Nov 2, 2002, 13:54
Total Comments 1543 (Pro)
User ID 15046
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News Comments > Morning Tech Bits
9. Re: Morning Tech Bits Oct 16, 2009, 19:28 Ecthelion
I record and watch TV, that's about it. I watch DVD's on my desktop because I have a nicer monitor and sound setup back here, and I'll stream the recorded TV to my desktop sometimes.
You may want to upgrade your HTPC for the "library" function then. It's a nice alternative to using shares, and Media Center doesn't seem to support external shares for the DVD library (while it does support external library locations). That would let you keep your media on the HTPC and still watch from your desktop without much hassle.

Of course, this is assuming you use the DVD Library feature of Media Center on your desktop now.

This comment was edited on Oct 16, 2009, 19:30.
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News Comments > Dragon Age Pre-Purchase [Updated]
34. Re: Dragon Age Pre-Purchase Oct 16, 2009, 14:39 Ecthelion
Of course I just looked at the Steam Store page and of course the link is there. I guess not all games have the right click option in the My Games list.
Yeah, that's annoying. At least the manual is available from Steam in some form though. So if that's the concern for Dragon Age, I'm sure it will be there.
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News Comments > Dragon Age Pre-Purchase [Updated]
30. Re: Dragon Age Pre-Purchase Oct 16, 2009, 14:05 Ecthelion
You mean a printed manual? That would be cool, although it would be hard to implement for a digitally-distributed game.
Pretty sure he is referring to a PDF manual, as several games on Steam don't include even that, which is rather annoying. I was looking for one for Batman Arkham Asylum last night as I wanted to know more about how the combat combo system worked...but instead had to download a guide from GameFAQs.

I have noticed that some Steam games don't have a link for the manual from within Steam, but the Steampowered website has a link on the game page. This actually allows people to download the manual without owning the game.

For example, here's the one for Batman:

I don't think I've seen a single recent game on Steam that doesn't have a PDF manual.

This comment was edited on Oct 16, 2009, 14:25.
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News Comments > Dragon Age Pre-Purchase [Updated]
28. Re: Dragon Age Pre-Purchase Oct 16, 2009, 13:47 Ecthelion
Mass Effect achievements actually unlocked stuff in the game itself. Got a million credits? It unlocked SPECTER gear from a merchant in game (and it stayed there, so you could go get it in new games as soon as you had the 350K necessary to buy it.)

Finishing the game with the same characters as your sidekicks the whole way would unlock achievements that gave bonus damage, bonus exp, things like that. Using a power 100 times allowed you to add that power to a character that would normally not have that power.

It was minor stuff, but fun enough that I found it was worth it to try and unlock them.
That actually sounds more useful than most achievement systems. It actually makes a difference in the game instead of just adding to your bragging rights.

Is the Digital Deluxe Edition at least going to have a MANUAL?
You mean a printed manual? That would be cool, although it would be hard to implement for a digitally-distributed game.

This comment was edited on Oct 16, 2009, 13:49.
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News Comments > Morning Tech Bits
2. Re: Morning Tech Bits Oct 16, 2009, 13:05 Ecthelion
If you don't mind using LogMeIn, it works just fine with Windows 7 and it's free for personal use.

I was going to order a few copies of Windows 7, but I decided to go the TechNet route instead. The only downside I can see to that option is that technically you need to renew each year to be able to do reinstalls and new installs after the first year. It still seemed like the best option to me though.

What do you do with your HTPC? I built one that had been running Vista (I just upgraded it to Windows 7), and the Windows 7 improvements are great from what I've seen of them. I only use mine to watch archived DVDs ripped directly (no conversion or anything), and Windows 7 supports that usage better than Vista (and presumably MCE 2005). The only problem I have with it is that it doesn't support playing Closed Captions from DVDs, even though Media Player (and Vista Media Center) does.

This comment was edited on Oct 16, 2009, 13:09.
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News Comments > Dragon Age Pre-Purchase [Updated]
21. Re: Dragon Age Pre-Purchase Oct 16, 2009, 12:11 Ecthelion
It's probably in-game achievements like Mass Effect had. Given the community focus of Dragon Age and the social network it attaches to for DLC, Mods and such, I guess they will be viewable by others, which makes them somewhat more worthwhile.
Excuse my ignorance, but I haven't played Mass Effect. Did the game have its own achievements that were viewable only in-game? It couldn't be seen by anyone else?

If I understand it correctly, isn't that rather pointless, even for achievement whores?

This comment was edited on Oct 16, 2009, 12:12.
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News Comments > Dragon Age Pre-Purchase [Updated]
16. Re: Dragon Age Pre-Purchase Oct 16, 2009, 11:21 Ecthelion
I wish all DLC focused on quests or missions. I've seen a lot of item-based DLC that is not at all balanced to the normal game content.

Most of this DLC doesn't sound that way (although it's hard to know without having the game to compare "normal" items to the bonus rings and armor), but it's probably still somewhat unbalanced. Hopefully it just adds the items to a shop (for an expensive price) instead of magically dropping it into your inventory. At least the Digital Deluxe Edition comes with the Warden's Keep and The Stone Prisoner DLC that is more substantial.

Steam and/or EA need to be more careful in their game descriptions. The blurbs for Warden's Keep and The Stone Prisoner both mention achievements, which only applies to the XBox360 version of the game (which is obviously not the one Steam is selling). I guess the descriptions were just copied and pasted for all the platforms and not error-checked afterward. I suppose it's technically possible the PC version will have Steam Achievements, but I think Steam would advertise that when it's this close to release.

This comment was edited on Oct 16, 2009, 11:27.
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News Comments > On Sale
7. Re: On Sale Oct 16, 2009, 08:19 Ecthelion
I really enjoyed SR2 on the PC (I think I paid about $30 for it). Sure it had some issues but it certainly wasn't unplayable. I think it even got a few patches after I finished playing it, but even in the state I played it I thought it was well worth the money. For $7.50 anyone interested in it should definitely get it, as long as you can tolerate occasionally choppy framerate (really only during driving, and even then only intermittently). I didn't find the game buggy at all, it just had some performance issues.  
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News Comments > X3: Terran Conflict Patched
14. Re: X3: Terran Conflict Patched Oct 15, 2009, 10:37 Ecthelion
Pretty sure you just look out your window for that
Yeah, but the problem then is that when I shoot somebody or blow up cars I go to jail.
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News Comments > Evening Tech Bits
1. Re: Evening Tech Bits Oct 14, 2009, 20:29 Ecthelion
"How to Get Books, CDs, DVDs and Games for Free"

That article is about swapping your old stuff for new stuff. It's a misleading title if you ask me (not Blue's fault though... the author gave it that title). Maybe I'm the only person who actually buys CDs, DVDs, and games to keep though. I've never sold or traded a game and I'm not about to start now.

It's a useful read for anyone who's interested in trading, but it's not about getting stuff for free. It's about trading.

This comment was edited on Oct 14, 2009, 20:30.
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News Comments > X3: Terran Conflict Patched
6. Re: X3: Terran Conflict Patched Oct 14, 2009, 18:52 Ecthelion
Way to ruin my fantasy with your "facts!"  
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News Comments > X3: Terran Conflict Patched
4. Re: X3: Terran Conflict Patched Oct 14, 2009, 18:38 Ecthelion
Is there any game that doesn't get boring after playing it solidly for a few months?
Probably not. I'm just more accustomed to playing through linear games that end before they get boring.

I like the open-world games I've played, but I wish they managed to stay interesting for a longer period of time. I guess that's just wishful thinking though. The only one I can remember that was actually disappointing was Far Cry 2. I don't think I even made it through half of the missions before I decided I had played the same few missions over and over again. Sure, it was fun to have different ways of killing the bad guys, but even that lost its charm eventually.

I hope to see my idea of a perfect game before I die, but that's probably not realistic. I'd like to see an open-ended game that had a completely destructible environment and completely destructible objects, a completely open world, and near-infinite real variety in missions (i.e. near-infinite variety in types of missions, not just mission details). Too bad it's probably an impossible dream.

This comment was edited on Oct 14, 2009, 18:44.
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News Comments > X3: Terran Conflict Patched
2. Re: X3: Terran Conflict Patched Oct 14, 2009, 17:02 Ecthelion
I got bored of X3:TC after playing it solid for the past few months. I took a break to play through The Witcher for the first time (which I just finished), and I have little motivation to go back to X3:TC even after this nice patch. I was excited about the patch (especially the Flak fix) before I got tired of the game.

It's a great game, but like the past games in the series it gets boring after a while, at least for me. But hey, the same thing happened with Morrowind, Oblivion, and Fallout 3 (after playing for 50 hours or so and finishing the main quests I got bored), and I consider those purchases to have been good investments since those 50 hours were highly entertaining.

I have nothing but respect for Egosoft. Especially now that they seem to have completely put the Steam patch fiasco behind them (this one was added to Steam before the retail version!). I eagerly await their next game.

EDIT: I also noticed this patch (the Steam version, if that matters) added what looks like a polish version of the manual in the Documents folder of the game directory. Talk about strange. Huh

This comment was edited on Oct 14, 2009, 17:12.
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News Comments > Gold - Borderlands
31. Re: Ok, it's gold. What DRM? Oct 12, 2009, 17:00 Ecthelion
As soon as I heard that they would be releasing the GotY edition, fully updated and with all the packs on-disk, I stopped considering buying the other two expansion packs, uninstalled the game, and now wait for them to ship it. Even though I already have the collectors edition, I will buy the game again so that I never have to fool with GfWL again.
Do you mean you won't have to log in to GfWL? Because the Fallout 3 GotY edition is still a GfWL game.
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News Comments > Ships Ahoy - Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising
86. Re: OFP Dragon Rising Out Oct 10, 2009, 15:55 Ecthelion
The game can be bloody frustrating. It has no quicksave function, and yes, I do consider that a weakness. For the 10% boost in "realism" that checkpoint saves give (making you more afraid of death) they add 95% to the irritation factor, especially in a game where someone from 400 yards away can kill you with one shot. I play games for fun, not for realism, and would have appreciated the ability to quicksave. The hardcore realism guys could then ignore that function if they so wish.
Why don't more games handle savegame frequency via the game difficulty selection? The Hitman series (at least starting with the second one... I can't remember how the first handled it) handled it perfectly - at the hardest difficulty you got no or one save per mission (depends on the mission I think), with each easier difficulty level providing more saves. Every checkpoint-based game should provide this kind of functionality so that more casual gamers can enjoy the game. It also doesn't affect the hardcore gamers who want to play without quicksaves.
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News Comments > On Sale
9. Re: On Sale Oct 9, 2009, 07:37 Ecthelion
I agree with Jeryyk and Bet about the Hitman series. It's my favorite PC series, with the nice distinction of actually improving with each game.

It's been a while since I played the first one, but I have replayed Silent Assassin, Contracts, and Blood Money several times. It's a shame that the Steam package doesn't include Contracts, because it's a great game. Silent Assassin is one of the most frustrating of the series, because it has a level or two that are extremely long, rather buggy (at least if you are trying to accomplish the mission without alerting the enemy), and not very fun. For those that have played it, I'm talking about some of the Japan missions (some of them are good, but one or two of them are really aggravating). In addition, it's difficult to run without raising the suspicion of the enemy (yes it's realistic, but it's frustrating). Thankfully Contracts and Blood Money eliminated those faults, and ended up being almost perfect games. Most if not all of the levels in Contracts and Blood Money are awesome, although Silent Assassin has some great ones as well.

All of the Hitman games can be tweaked to work in widescreen resolutions also, although Blood Money supports them natively. Unfortunately, they all seem to use "Vert-" mode, meaning they lose vertical screen space instead of gaining horizontal screen space (which is the definition of "widescreen"). Don't let that detract from otherwise stellar games though.

One of the best thing about the Hitman games is that you can finish most levels multiple ways. First of all, you can choose whether to run and gun (although this isn't an option for some levels because it can alert your targets and let them escape) or do things like a real hitman. Beyond that, there are multiple methods of killing each target, both stealthily and directly.

I highly recommend all of the Hitman games, especially everything after the first one. I also suggest trying to play on the hardest difficultly level the first time through, because it makes the missions more tense and provides a bigger sense of accomplishment.

This comment was edited on Oct 9, 2009, 07:41.
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News Comments > GameTap Changes
4. Re: GameTap Changes Oct 8, 2009, 19:30 Ecthelion
The thing that's sad about it is the vast majority of their games work just fine on a 64-bit OS. It's their own incompetence or narrow-mindedness in creating their DRM wrapper for the games.  
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News Comments > EA Gets Steamier
9. Re: Game Reviews Oct 7, 2009, 08:50 Ecthelion
If you are reading EA, please put C&C 3, Kane's Wrath, and C&C 1st Decade, and Battle For Middle Earth 1 and 2 (plus expansions) on Steam!
Agreed. The BFME games are all out of print, so they're hard to find anywhere. I missed out on them when they were first released, so I'd love a chance to play them all without paying over $50 for a used copy, and then have to deal with multiple CDs and DVDs.

2. Why do the system requirements says: "Multiplayer: 2 - 6 players with optional voice support, network or Internet connection required (Cable, DSL or faster connection)." when there is no online play?
It looks like Steam (or EA) just copy and pasted the system requirements for the original RA3.

This comment was edited on Oct 7, 2009, 08:55.
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News Comments > Star Trek Online Ship List
6. Re: Star Trek Online Ship List Oct 5, 2009, 12:43 Ecthelion
Ugh. All of the new picture-linked ships look like terrible fanmade kitbashes.

I know it's too much to expect professional-looking designs, but at least past Trek games have had a few decent designs. I haven't seen any for STO yet.
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News Comments > Arkham Asylum Sells Well
103. Re: Arkham Asylum Sells Sep 25, 2009, 14:30 Ecthelion
This is your champion?
Hell no.

While I don't disagree with everything he says (although I do disagree with pretty much all of his non-gaming views - especially the homophobic stuff - from his early posting days), I strongly disagree with the way it's presented. I'd like to believe most of us PC gamers don't live in Jerykk's world of absolutes.

I really disagree with his suggestion that if all gamers were PC gamers, they would have higher standards. Even if we assume his definition of "high standards" is restricted to typical PC gamer preferences and not as much personal taste, many of those standards are subjective.

I haven't played any games on the current generation of consoles (except for a little Wii Sports at a friend's house), and I don't have any skill with gamepads that use thumbsticks (that should tell you how long it's been since I put any serious time in on a console). If anyone should hate consoles for ruining PC gaming, it should be me. But I really don't. For example, it didn't bother me that GTA4 had a cover system... in fact I thought it fit the game well. I do regret some of the trends in the gaming industry during the past few years, but some of those would have likely happened even without the shift in focus to consoles. It wouldn't have taken long before someone figured out that "dumbing down" games meant increased revenue, even without consoles being in the equation.

I find that the PC is the best fit for my gaming, and that I don't need to own a console. But I don't care what system is the best, and that's not something that can be determined objectively anyway. On the technical side, the PC is better in many areas, but technical ability is far from the only factor in determining which is best. The only thing that should matter is what platform or platforms fits your gaming the best.

This comment was edited on Sep 25, 2009, 14:33.
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1543 Comments. 78 pages. Viewing page 23.
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