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Real Name WaltC   
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Nickname WaltC
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Signed On Jan 31, 2003, 04:03
Total Comments 673 (Apprentice)
User ID 16008
 
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News Comments > The Bard's Tale IV Kickstarter
19. Re: The Bard's Tale IV Kickstarter Jun 2, 2015, 15:54 WaltC
 
Brumbek wrote on Jun 2, 2015, 13:54:
...
I almost feel bad for not paying more, but honestly I never played Bard's Tale and never cared much for that genre. But with Legend of Grimlock being AWESOME, I'm glad to support Bard's Tale IV.

I'll have to do something with this Kickstarter...

You should give Bard's Tale II a spin, certainly...In BT1 I can still remember drawing my maps on graph paper--you could not finish the game without doing that...;) It was fun, but I suspect I am far too spoiled to do that again. (Were those maps 20x20 or 22x22 grids?)

I really like inXile. I mean shoot, I even loved their last AAA publisher game Hunted: The Demon's Forge despite it getting slammed by critics and having horrible sales! I still say Hunted was a great game with nice art and interesting lore (and it used Unreal Engine 3, so perhaps Bard's Tale IV will look similar to it!).

If you thought Grimlock was "awesome" then I'd say you think this genre is awesome...;) I think BT2 was my favorite...check them out...!
 
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News Comments > Evening Tech Bits
5. Re: Evening Tech Bits Jun 1, 2015, 22:28 WaltC
 
One of the best features of DX12, at least for me, is how the combined memory pools for Crossfire will work (and I assume for SLI, too.) Instead of two 4-gig discrete 3d cards ending up with 4-gigs of ram between them, at long last we'll get the benefit of all 8 GB's of ram. Lots of things to like 'round the bend!
 
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News Comments > The Bard's Tale IV 1st Day Kickstarter Incentive
3. Re: The Bard's Tale IV 1st Day Kickstarter Incentive Jun 1, 2015, 22:22 WaltC
 
I am all for a new Bard's Tale game--Bard's Tale IV sounds fine--but I have to ask--where's Fargo been for the last 20-25 years, eh? I could have used the fourth installment in the series a long time ago. It was actually due a couple of decades back, IIRC. We ought to be hitting around Bard's Tale VIII or so at this time...;) Better late than never, of course--but I have to wonder at the lack of judgement many of these game devs and/or publishers seem to have in terms of knowing their markets and what kinds of games their paying audiences want to see.

I think with many of these guys the problem is they are too close to the forest to see the proverbial tree--I mean, look at Chris Taylor's obvious confusion as to what people like/want to see. (I feel bad for the guy and hope he's getting along under his new boss.) It's like when a Kickstarter makes it and does amazing things--it's like the developers are dumbfounded and can't really understand it because they'd written these types of games off long ago for some unfathomable reasons. So here's Brian back with another Bard's Tale--only 15-20 years late, that is. Go figure...(Talk about "missed opportunities!)

But I'd really like to see a return to smaller studios doing far more creative, imaginative games--sort of like was the case when Fargo shipped The Bard's Tale in the 1980's...! Games simply don't need to cost $40M to be great--not even a tenth of that, really. Before the advent of GLIDE/D3d/OpenGL 3d, it's *amazing* to reflect back on the sorts of diversity games had even when everything was built on 2d, sprite-driven engines with incredibly restrictive hardware resources to run in...! We need to get much closer to the creativity of those days, imo.

I like games like Witcher 3, however, (a lot!) and note that there certainly is a place for big-budget 3d games--it's just that they don't always have to follow that same , tired cookie cutter design. Anyway, It's a real shame that these talented developers of yesteryear had to wait until Kickstarter was born before they could return to their creative roots. I rejoice that these games are coming back, but I lament the long decades without them.
 
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News Comments > Op Ed
9. Re: Op Ed Jun 1, 2015, 12:14 WaltC
 
There is one thing that Political Correctness will never be, and that is it will never be correct...So many strange & weird people obsessed with other people's personal opinions--a monumental waste of time and energy. The Politically Correct crowd would control people's thoughts, if only they could. What weakness--to constantly require reinforcement of your own opinions through the agreement of everyone around you! It doesn't bother me in the slightest whether people agree with me or not--it's their prerogative, and I wouldn't dream of telling them how they ought to think. All I ask is that they return the courtesy, but in general Political Correctness doesn't allow courtesy, and often doesn't tolerate reason, either. Hence I proudly brag that I am completely and utterly incorrect, politically speaking...;)  
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News Comments > Aliens: Colonial Marines Lawsuit Loses Class Status; Drops Gearbox
16. Re: Aliens: Colonial Marines Lawsuit Loses Class Status; Drops Gearbox May 30, 2015, 10:15 WaltC
 
It doesn't seem it's as obvious as it should be, but these lawyers have lost because they had no case. Most "class actions" are like this--they are erroneously labeled "consumer actions" by a naive press but what they are is charity bazaars for the starving attorneys who bring them. This case is so obviously illegitimate that the judge even stripped its class-action status, and in these kinds of suits FAIL doesn't get any bigger than that. Personally, I wish they'd incarcerate these attorneys for wasting everyone else's time and money--it would surely cut the number of spurious lawsuits way back. Starvation is an excellent character-building mode for attorneys and I rejoice whenever I hear that one is properly suffering...;)

When people will learn that pre-ordering games is a stupid practice, and when they will learn that no one is going to protect them in the marketplace better than they can protect themselves--are topics of long discussion...;) Act in haste, repent at leisure, etc.



 
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News Comments > AMD Beta Drivers
2. Re: AMD Beta Drivers May 29, 2015, 11:33 WaltC
 
Mashiki Amiketo wrote on May 29, 2015, 11:24:
FYI it's beta 15.5

Yep, 15.5's it is...;) (15.4.x's were released couple of weeks back...)

 
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News Comments > Sunday Tech Bits
4. Re: Sunday Tech Bits May 24, 2015, 14:54 WaltC
 
It's weird...a year before AMD introduced the Athlon (in 1999, IIRC), so-called "analysts" were saying the same thing about AMD then. Here we are on the eve of AMD's upcoming Zen architecture, and it appears history is repeating itself. So...I wonder if AMD could be on the eve of leapfrogging Intel once again on the high end...? For the sake of competition I hope so. x86 computing today owes its current shape to AMD's x86-64 (that Intel licenses for its Core 2 cpus) & DDR SDRAM--back at the time Intel was pushing RDRAM and Itanium for 64-bit computing. (Obviously, the markets did not follow Intel, rather Intel followed the markets which followed AMD.)

Another mitigating factor for AMD is that it now owns ATi--which it did not own in 1998. The merger of AMD's gpu & cpu businesses enabled the company to beat back all comers for the current xBox One and PS4 production contracts, so I think this analyst is likely even more wrong than they were back in '98 when they were saying the same thing...;)
 
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News Comments > CDPR on Witcher 3 Graphics Downgrades
14. Re: CDPR on Witcher 3 Graphics Downgrades May 21, 2015, 09:47 WaltC
 
Verno wrote on May 21, 2015, 09:28:
Marketing is a tough balancing act as Ubisoft has found out recently with backlash over their displayed vs actual products. In the case of The Witcher 3 I find the game overall to be so nice looking that I don't mind any downgrades.

That's just it--there aren't any downgrades...;) The game is far, far better looking (on the PC) than all of those fake "downgrade" screen shots we saw a couple of days before launch.

Contrasting the released game with the state of the game two years ago makes no sense at all...for more than one reason, too.

1) Nobody, but nobody, would have thought much of this game had it been released in 2013 in the state it was in...;) The released game is infinitely better.

2) There are going to be many improvements made for the PC version as time goes on, as CDPR has already said and as the company has done with every Witcher release to date.

Big brouhaha over nothing, essentially!
 
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News Comments > Morning Metaverse
2. Re: Morning Metaverse May 18, 2015, 11:40 WaltC
 
Ozmodan wrote on May 18, 2015, 10:36:
Oh course the US is down near the bottom when it comes to internet speeds as the cable monopolies limit their investment in more infrastructure. And people wonder why the FCC acts the way they do.

Yeah, gosh, that must be why in a US city where I can choose between AT&T and Comcast that I was able to choose a third alternative (a Cogent ISP) that is providing me with ~50Mb/s down and up for less than what Comcast was charging me for 6Mb/s d/512k u in 2010. It must be because "the cable monopolies are deliberately holding me hostage to the slowest Internet on the planet," of course...;)

The FCC is such a sharp cookie, in fact, that it is trying to apply a century-old law (Title II) meant for telcos way back then, laws which allowed the Federal government to grant AT&T a legal long-distance phone service monopoly in the US for decades--to the Internet, today. Wheeler is so sharp that he has announced that he is going to single-handedly change the Title II specifications to make them fit ISPs because at the moment they don't--for all of the obvious reasons. The only problem, of course, is that neither Wheeler nor the FCC has the authority to rewrite the Title II laws--only Congress has that authority. Just like the last time, the FCC will regrettably have to be shown that in court. They know it, though.

So what is really going on? You are observing a pristine example of "political grandstanding." Obama, Wheeler, and other Democrats know full well that Congress (since they lost it to the Republicans) will never pass a "Title III" specifically aimed at the ISPs who gave us the Internet as we know it (government had nothing to do with it--except laying off of taxing it for a while.) They also know they are going to have to explain in court why the FCC has already legally classified the Internet as an "Information service" and not a "Communications service" of the kind that might be regulated under the Title II provisions.

The real aim here is that ultimately the government wants to be able to tax and control the entire Internet--they also want to use it as a political football just like the Democrats are using it at the moment. There's not a single thing the FCC has mandated that will improve the lot of any Internet ISP customer in the US today...;) Not one...! You can't provide any anecdotes as to "how much better things are now than they were" on the Internet because no such situations exist...! It's all really funny. The national Democrats in the country think the voters are stupidos who require a ruling elite to "guide" them. It's all a sham, though, to disguise their naked, never-ending lust for more and more political power, imo. It's going to be very entertaining to see how all of this grandstanding and posturing plays out...;)
 
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News Comments > NVIDIA Drivers for The Witcher 3
7. Re: NVIDIA Drivers for The Witcher 3 May 18, 2015, 10:57 WaltC
 
qsto wrote on May 18, 2015, 10:36:

Anyhow, I fail to understand how new set of drivers could have anything to do with "marketing", please enlighten me.

Glad to...;) nVidia has a long and glorious history (some would say inglorious) of hyping driver releases that essentially don't do much of anything differently than the last driver set. Many, many years ago, nVidia launched for the first time (not the last!) a set of drivers it explosively named "Detonators"...;) According to nVidia, these drivers provided "up to 50%" performance increases in some games. It got a lot of press at the time because no one could find the 50% anywhere--it being very difficult to find even 5% in most cases. That was around the the general time frame in which nVidia was also discovered to have optimized its drivers to substitute a camera on rails event in a popular 3dMark benchmark at the time (detecting that the bench was being run and then changing things), in which the whole idea of the benchmark was that the *benchmark* controlled the camera--not the IHV videocard driver (for obvious reasons)...;) nVidia took a while denying it all before they finally said "Uncle!" and copped to the whole thing. But anyway...you asked...;)

I rather doubt any of that applies here, though...;) Both IHVs use the event of a new game launch to hype a drivers' release--whether it really does much of anything differently is unknown, of course. It's just a way for both IHVs to get some free PR on the back of a big game launch--or even a little one, for that matter. This is supposedly a TWIMTBP nVidia-sponsored title, so nVidia should have refined its drivers to optimally run W3 code weeks if not months ago, already. But sometimes the game developer will change something at the last minute that requires something new from the 3d-card IHV. "Only your IHV knows for sure"...;)
 
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News Comments > Project CARS Livery Pack Released; AMD Optimizations Coming
15. Re: Project CARS Livery Pack Released; AMD Optimizations Coming May 8, 2015, 12:34 WaltC
 
Any game developer whose game doesn't run decently on one of the two IHV's 3d gpus, and who is blaming the hardware IHV for that situation, is simply trying to cover up the fact that as the game developer he didn't use [in this case] AMD hardware when he was developing the game. Had they been doing so they'd have seen the problems and reached out to AMD to correct the situation *before* the game shipped. That's only what smart, high-quality developers do because it makes so much sense: as a game developer your goal is to sell as many copies of your game as you can, and that means that your game needs to run well on as wide a latitude of hardware as is possible. Blaming AMD or nVidia because of the work you didn't do as the developer, and trying to pass the buck to either of them is the mark of a sub-standard developer, imo.

It's the game developer's responsibility to ensure that his game runs well everywhere, and if it doesn't, it's the game developer's responsibility to reach out to the IHV concerned to find out why. That's just common sense.

In this case, it doesn't appear that the developers even used AMD hardware for testing during development, and that they think it's up to AMD to "reach out to them" as opposed to them reaching out to AMD before the game ships in order to get such problems solved before they start negatively cutting into your game sales. Not doing that is either lazy or stupid or both. Not pleasant, but there it is.
 
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News Comments > Morning Metaverse
9. Re: Morning Metaverse May 8, 2015, 12:16 WaltC
 
He
She
It

I think that covers the bases these days...;)

Amazon should be the first to boldly bring "It" out of the closet, as in, "Look at these fine toys for the It in your family!"

The 1% of weirdophiles are ruining public schools for the 99% of sane humanity. (Get your kids out of public schools, now, because a mind is a terrible thing to waste!)
 
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News Comments > Evening Consolidation
4. Re: Evening Consolidation May 7, 2015, 21:04 WaltC
 
Does anyone alive actually *believe* the nonsense the marketers spew about game consoles? It's unreal...;) It's hilarious! What buffoons...!

 
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News Comments > Morning Tech Bits
4. Re: Morning Tech Bits May 7, 2015, 12:56 WaltC
 
Yea, gosh, AMD will soon be releasing a new high-end gpu with HBM...so "disappointing"...[not]...;)

 
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News Comments > Steam Ending Paid Mods; Providing Refunds
21. Re: Steam Ending Paid Mods; Providing Refunds Apr 27, 2015, 22:46 WaltC
 
Creston wrote on Apr 27, 2015, 22:02:
Yeah, it'll be interesting to see what Beth's attitude becomes to simple things such as "cleaning" your mods. They refuse to do so for their DLCs, because they don't support modding, and cleaning mods is only an issue if you use mods/extra content.

So what, Beth, are you going to keep releasing dirty DLCs that will fuck up massively with other mods installed, when those mods have been paid for and you took your fucking ridiculous 66% cut?

(Actually, I already know the answer to this, it's yes. They still won't give a shit.)

Creston,

If Beth doesn't want modding they wouldn't include the modding tools that they do with their games...;) I don't think there's any doubt that they support the idea of modding, and that they recognize the enormous impact it's had on the sales of Skyrim--but of course they can't support individual mods they themselves didn't create/code. I wouldn't expect them to.
 
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News Comments > Steam Ending Paid Mods; Providing Refunds
19. Re: Steam Ending Paid Mods; Providing Refunds Apr 27, 2015, 22:37 WaltC
 
Unexpectedly rapid and proper response, Valve. Everybody makes mistakes, but as me pappy used to say, it takes a big man to admit them (pun intended.) Good call.

I have absolutely no quarrel with modders asking for voluntary contributions--as they've always done when they felt right asking for contributions. It's true: the chances are far better that modders make more money that way than taking 25% of a set price from Valve--bad move. The idea of monetizing sword-sheath skins and other petty cosmetic like that things like that really stinks...;) Let's keep PC gaming untouched by the nickel & dime degradation that has hit other so-called "gaming" markets.
 
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News Comments > Morning Legal Briefs
2. Re: Morning Legal Briefs Apr 27, 2015, 10:57 WaltC
 
The present administration in Washington will likely go down in history as one of the dumbest, most backwards-looking administrations in U.S. history. The problem is that whenever the government steps in and interferes with private business on whatever pretext it uses, it's always for the sake of "the consumer." However, rarely can it be shown that the consumer benefits. How the TWC customers are supposed to benefit from continuing on as TWC customers beats me. I've not seen anything to support that position come out of Washington. What I have seen is the government acting on anti-Comcast sentiment that is 100% emotional/political--so it was not "the consumer" who benefited here: it was the anti-Comcast crowd. Makes me feels sorry for the ailing TWC's customer base.

Comcast could do better, though, in upgrading its own Internet
infrastructure to a minimum of 25Mbs/sec down for the rates it presently supplies 6Mb/sec down. Had the company done that first and then sought the merger--it's likely it would have been greenlighted from the get-go. Resisting universally higher broadband connection speeds will not help Comcast in any way.
 
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News Comments > Steam Launches Paid Mod Support
39. Re: Steam Launches Paid Mod Support Apr 23, 2015, 16:38 WaltC
 
jimnms wrote on Apr 23, 2015, 14:38:
Fuck you Valve! Nexus Mods has had a donate button forever, and I'm OK with that. Steam should have just added a donate button or a pay what you want or not at all model. I don't see any good coming out of this.

I disagree...I don't think Valve should have even a "donate" button because (as Gabe likes to brag so much) Valve is a large & profitable company, making its money from the resale of other people's work--like Windows and the various game developers who put their games on Steam where Valve makes 30% of the gross proceeds.

(If it weren't for Microsoft's Windows, and the gigantic market Microsoft has spent 30 years and many billions of dollars building, billions that Valve will never earn, Valve would have closed shop years ago, due to lack of interest. But Newell had the gall to go hysterical about Microsoft just because they opened an online store. Earth to Newell: Valve doesn't own the Internet and never will.)

But Nexus has always been struggling and what the Nexus guys have done over the years is pretty much legendary. (I remember many years ago when I thought "the Nexus" was some weird Chinese web site, or something...;)) Donating to Nexus makes sense for me--I derive a lot from the site; donating to Valve makes no sense at all for me.

I don't use Steam Workshop for mods anyway because of its auto update system. Skyrim is especially sensitive to mod changes. Some mods require you to go through specific steps before updating to a newer version, and I've even seen some mod updates require a new game.

That's exactly why I haven't used it. Those auto-updates are ridiculous, especially if the mod is a large one!...;) I've wondered why Valve can't see how loony-tunes that is. It may be a bit different for games--but still, Valve has fallen down on that, too--because often their game updates will be GBs in size whereas the same update on Gog is 10% as large and does exactly the same thing.

Even though it has been a while since I played Skyrim, I just checked out three random mods that I use that appeared in the pay list on Steam. All three of those mods are now pay what you want, with a 99 cent minimum, and are no longer available on the Nexus. It looks like users aren't happy about it either based on the bad ratings and comments being posted.

That's ridiculous! 99 cents? With Valve getting 75% of *that*! The modders who think that's wonderful will be amazed at how quickly their mods tank in popularity and use--maybe they can eat out once or twice (At McDonald's?) on the money this brain-dead move will make them...;)

If I paid 99 cents for every mod I use right now, it would cost more than I paid for the fucking game at release.

Valve has made the greed mistake. Yeah, I think hogging 75% of the mod proceeds is extremely greedy--because the better modded games will sell more games for Valve! That's the whole idea of mods--it gives modders a chance to express themselves for some positive notoriety in the community.

I'm sure Valve sold this line to its prospective victims: "Hey, look at all the work you've done...don't you think you *deserve* some money for your efforts?" Well, gee, apparently when the mods were created--pocket-change money was the last thing on these people's minds. But I keep coming back to how greedy 75% of the proceeds is. Developers don't pay Valve 75% of their money--they'd laugh in Newell's face if he so much as suggested it. So why should modders?

Modding isn't game development--usually there aren't 40 people working on a mod and modders aren't spending millions of dollars to create them. Modding is something far different--modding is for individuals who want to make a mark but don't want to spend millions of dollars they don't have. Trying to monetize modding seems like a fool's errand to me for a lot of reasons: if game developers (who often do spend millions) thought that free mods ate into their DLC business (they don't)--wait 'til they get a load of this...;)

 
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News Comments > Steam Launches Paid Mod Support
28. Re: Steam Launches Paid Mod Support Apr 23, 2015, 15:49 WaltC
 
I don't like this one bit. It's going to ruin modding--maybe. OTOH, Nexus is still there and will continue hosting mods for the community, and I think a lot of modders are going to resist getting locked into Steam--I mean, that's a lot of work to do just to give Valve 75% of your proceeds. This actually has the real potential to drive people away from Steam, imo. Bad Move.

OTOH, there exist stupid developers who simply don't understand that providing great modding tools with your game will wildly accelerate the number of people who buy your game. Bethesda saw that with Skyrim, in spades: the PC version is still the version to own, and it's partly because of the modding community.

Every day the PC as a platform is getting the recognition it has long deserved. Consoles are a bad hangover from the years (long ago) when powerful gaming rigs cost $5k-$10k...;) Consoles looked great at the $400-$600 levels, comparatively. But today you can smoke either the PS4 or the xBone with a PC that costs just a wee bit more! And, you can put it together yourself and cherry-pick the components. Building your own box today is a no-brainer, imo. (I've been doing that since 1995, so, yes, I'm prejudiced. But it's the only way to go.) The fact is that no hardware OEM knows as much about what you like as you do, which is why "rolling your own" gaming box makes so much sense. Let's tell Valve, "Thanks, but we'll pass."
 
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News Comments > Saturday Legal Briefs
4. Re: Saturday Legal Briefs Apr 18, 2015, 22:29 WaltC
 
The really crazy thing is that if the FBI had put under-cover agents into the illegal betting pool then that would have been allowed (as a routine under-cover operation.) But the government's argument that these agents were "invited" in is spurious in the extreme: nobody invited any FBI agents in--they invited the cable-guys in to fix the cable without "fixing" anything else...;)

Anyway I find it highly amusing that the casinos call the cops on some guy who is "taking bets without a license"--one gambling house sicking the cops on another group of gamblers. Those Las Vegas casinos want to make sure that *nobody* cuts into what they see as "their action"...;) That's why the casinos fight so hard to keep Internet poker illegal and out of business. Lol...;) Here we've got the government posing as cable guys to bust an illegal gambling operation at the behest of legal gambling operations. You can't make this stuff up...:)
 
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