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Everything posted by Kurgan

  1. Yeah, well we'll always have the video games and the old EU, they can call it "legends" but whatever, none of this is real.
  2. How does GIMP compare to Paint.net? I admit I've used the latter a lot more. Of course back in the day we recall using other programs to create textures. Granted I haven't created anything for these games in a long time (ah, those were the days though!).
  3. how about actor Clancy Brown? (cause that's who it is) ;)

  4. Well done. I thought she was tough as well, and it's true the fights could be short or long, sometimes depending upon luck (and because I had it set to realistic saber damage, which works for both you AND your opponents!). You can always run away and heal of course, so it depends upon your playing style. The temptation I have to face in fights like this is that I get impatient and want to have it over with.
  5. Did you check Massassi.net or Lucasfiles?
  6. It's Clancy Brown from "Highlander."
  7. Now if we move beyond the question of "God" why the Christian God, specifically? Because to me (despite my personal bias), only the Christian God really makes sense, to a believer. Why? Because there is no need to worship a Deist God. A Deist God requires our worship no more than an idol or a pantheistic universe "god" would. I own many possessions that I find useful or "like" but I don't "love" them. My computer or my books don't "love" me back like a person. So whether I were to fawn over them or not, makes no difference. My mother doesn't "need" my love to exist, but I do love her and that is the relationship that exists. The pagan gods might literally need our worship to maintain themselves, but they exist as merely parts of creation, not its source and the author of its purpose (making them little more than "super" humans, much like the caricature of the "big man in the sky" who will destroy you if you don't keep him happy). A "God" who is merely the name for the physical world is also not worth worshiping, since no relationship is possible with something that lacks intelligence. Yes, even the primitive intelligence of a family pet still provides for a reciprocal relationship of a kind of love. So to "believe" in a God, to have a relationship of a worshiper of a deity, only makes sense, to me, in the Christian God, because this God is all powerful, but also willing to give us free will, and willing to enter the creation for our sake and foster a relationship, not merely be a judge and king who expects obedience (as for instance in the classical Muslim understanding of God; who also seems focused more on rewarding physical actions with physical punishments or physical pleasures). The pantheistic or monistic God would really be "me" (or me saying I'm the universe). So I'd be worshiping myself. That's self esteem, not a relationship. Now there are certain Jewish, Muslim and other conceptions of God that are close to the Christian one, but I'm only positing the existence of one God. Multiple "gods" don't fit the definition of God (an infinite, all powerful and eternal being doesn't compete with other simultaneously infinite and all powerful eternal beings, and the Trinity doctrine is an ancient understanding of the oneness of God, not a multiplicity, as in classic paganism). If I can "make up" in my head an idea of God, that's fine, as long as it corresponds to the real God that exists. I can't say the real God doesn't exist, if I can just "make up" and guess what that God is like, anymore than saying a person isn't real if I can guess correctly what they are like before I get to really know them. Our knowledge of God is limited, but if God wishes to reveal Himself to His creation, then something of that God can be known. The atheist will point out that all religious experiences must be subjective, fallible and non-transferable. Fine. But some experiences of God can be more communal, even universal, as in the discovery of God through philosophical reasoning. Granted, a person can reason their way "out" of a belief in God as well, but I find such systems far less satisfying. One still attempts to come up with explanations for problems they've created, often substituting God-like solutions, which I think concede the point (like a universe that somehow "knows" us, created itself, and controls our very thoughts, including, presumably, rationality itself). Now if we are to quibble about "which Christian" God we're talking about, I make no distinction between the "God of a Baptist," or a Methodist, or a Lutheran, because they are all the same thing (I'm here excluding henotheists like Mormons). There is no alternative, as if God were a subjective creation (if God is, then "God" is not God, as the atheist would have it). I think the "God" of Catholic and Orthodox thought, streaming from the biblical record (which is merely a "snapshot" in time of the testimony of the Church, not the end-all, be-all as fundamentalists would have it), is the norm of Christian thought. If you want to debate with an Open Theist or Foursquare Gospel person or Oneness Pentecostal, have at it, but they're johnny-come-lately. Different perceptions of God are not the same thing as different Gods (and as my motto says, there can be only one).
  8. Now to answers those questions you said I brought up and should have answered: One needs to come up with a definition (or definitions) of what "God" (or gods) is/are, and then ask if there is a way to discern that. So if I think God is defined as an immortal human being living on Mt. Olympus on earth, I can presumably search for such a mountain, and in the absence of such a mountain, conclude that it is reasonable (for now) to doubt this being's existence. If I simply presume this being is a trickster who can elude my detection, I would have to come up with another way to falsify this being, but the idea that I can be fooled, means it's still reasonable to doubt their existence, at least for now. I've seen attempts to apply this sort of example to the Christian God, presuming that if the Bible says God "lives in the sky" and sounds like a "man" then if we go up in a spacecraft we can look around and if we don't see a man floating up there, we've disproven his existence. A less comical way of doing this is to examine the philosophical arguments given for God's existence as found in Doctors of the Church like Thomas Aquinas or Anselm of Canterbury. If we define "God" not as a magically powerful physical being residing in our universe but as "that which nothing greater can be conceived" (as Anselm did) then logically this "God" must exist (since we can't really imagine "infinity plus one"). These theologians and philosophers then discuss whether one can reason to the idea of the Christian God or if this merely posits a God akin to that of the Deists or some other conception. If we imagine "God" is a trickster who is fooling all of us, all the time, we can abandon rationality altogether since we can have no hope to know anything. The presence of those who have a differing opinions over God or deny the question entirely doesn't moot the discussion anymore than differing opinions (legitimate or not) on any other topic negates that topic (for example controversies amongst historians or scientists). I find the arguments they present to be compelling, even if not exhaustive. They are not arguing for a "God of the gaps" (we don't know something, so therefore God must be responsible; God is hiding just over the next hill we haven't explored yet), but a God that can reasonably be said to exist, even without show magic tricks or elaborate myths told to give some moral lesson. I think a person could find "happiness" of a sort, if we define it as physical pleasure. This sort of happiness requires no rational engagement. If we define happiness instead as satisfaction with truth, then yes, there too it is possible, but we have no way of knowing of that truth is really true or merely our perception of it. We can believe in universal truths and still be mistaken about them. Doing the right thing implies we know what the right thing is. But we can all "do our best" (what we think is our best). So yes, it's quite possible for atheists, I believe, to be happy. I would argue a greater happiness is possible for one who believes and follows the true God, but there I'm making a claim such a thing is possible. Most atheists I think would agree that a true believer might be deluded, but happy thinking he's chosen the best part. If God doesn't exist, then this "greatest happiness" is impossible, and its path merely a delusion. So the atheist has lost nothing, but the true believer "wins" if he's right. Otherwise both can be happy, but attended to in different ways. I believe that God does exist, and so the true believer has the greater happiness, but a degree of happiness can be had by others who do not cling to this deity. The atheist must admit that happiness exists for his "believer" brethren, even if he thinks the basis of this happiness is false (but if a relativist, he cannot deny, except for his personal preference, that this is legitimate).
  9. So you think I'm dishonest? I presume then you believe yourself to be honest, and you're hoping others will "side with" you for this. Am I missing your tone there? Resolving the question of God's existence and whether atheism is a good foundation for one's life won't be resolved in a single thread, and we both know most readers have already made up their mind before they read anything. This is a debate thread, but where's the debate here? I just see people asking questions and commenting on what others are saying. I guess "debate" has a lot of different definitions. But you want something like that... Great. Full disclosure: I have a bachelors degree in Philosophy and a Masters in Theology (actually "Divinity" which adds courses more akin to pastoral ministry), accredited. That course work includes one in sociology and one in philosophical anthropology, but apart from a course taught by an anthropologist (on Islam), I didn't take any courses strictly on anthropology as a social science. That doesn't make me an expert by any means. I too have been known to dabble and study on my own outside of this, as many people do. It is not merely "the love of wisdom," but an actual field of study and discipline, (to quote dictionary.com a bible of internet debates) "the rational investigation of the truths and principles of being, knowledge, or conduct" which of course includes natural, moral and metaphysical respectively. Despite colloquial usage, it is not limited to laboratory work or "musings" on deep subjects. Every human being with a functioning mind has a philosophy (or uses philosophy) whether they use those words or not, because everyone upon maturity functions with a view of motion, cause and effect, reality, right and wrong, how we know what we think we know, and contemplation of our existence. However, only those who professionally study and teach this discipline are properly known as philosophers. By "straight answers" I hope you don't mean "short answers."
  10. Which specific questions do you want answers to? (i.e.: Does God Exist? Do humans have free will?) Before we go on, do you have any degrees in philosophy or theology? Anthropology, perhaps?
  11. Kurgan

    Siege Mode

    It's me. Thanks for your support. If it was up to me, it'd still be running as we speak. I had some major frustration with the seeming lack of solid user-created Siege maps. Whenever I tried hosting them, nobody would join because I guess they got annoyed having to auto-download. The moviebattles thing is another story, those people apparently were happy to download multiple gigs of files and play together. It's been awhile, but out of curiosity (and to help educate the rest of us who might want to improve conditions), how do you "lame" objectives in Siege these days? The worst examples I ever saw were all fixed in OJP Basic, which didn't require an extra download from joiners, so it generally fixed things for me. I suppose somebody could grab a holdable object and "hide" somewhere, but there aren't many places to hide on the base maps that I can recall (ie: standing on the pillars in the center of Korriban, which is in open view to everyone). An admin or votekick needs to be present in those cases. It is annoying when someone even attempts it though... As for custom maps, I can see the issue there if there are more exploitable things like that.
  12. I come here occasionally just to see how things are going, been busier in the last few years. What brings in more people usually are new games and movies, but it's hard to keep any community active indefinitely, because Real Life . MTFBWY
  13. Didn't know that... I own the PC version (haven't played it in ages, didn't get very far to be honest). I did download TFU2 Demo for my Xbox360 (yes, I got that system last year finally), but I would have to put them side by side to see the differences. Certainly the resolution on my monitor is way better than on my TV, but the other stuff I'll look for. The graphics stuff doesn't seem that big a deal to me, but the additional content makes me feel like I got ripped off. At least the "hidden DLC" is free though...
  14. Kurgan

    Siege Mode

    Great to here. I wish I could still maintain my own Siege server, but it seems all contact with my former sponsor has been lost (new management?). I have seen some new siege tactics and such, but some of it seems to just be exploiting game glitches to make it unfair, is there something else here you had in mind? The main problem I have with Siege these days is no decent new maps. Back in the day it seemed like everyone who wanted to make something new was putting their time into "Movie Battles" instead. I'm curious why the server needs to be "locked" if so few people are playing these days. Whom are you trying to keep out? MTFBWY
  15. I'll be honest, I didn't beat the game legit. I turned on "blast shield" in the options for the final battle. I was just sick and tired of repeating that danged level and wanted to be done with it (and go back to playing JK). I've wanted to finish it for real for a long time, but I was kind of waiting for the DarkXL project to finish, which it hasn't yet, sadly... (If you want to see an easy final boss battle, just check out DarkXL in its current state)
  16. Is the JA++ forum still running? If so, that'd be your best bet, or contact the author of the mod directly.
  17. You're not agreeing that answers exist, or you're saying I didn't provide them but should have? If one is ignorant of a subject, and is not capable of becoming an expert in it, would it be right to declare that subject false or useless? I think we can agree that the answer is "no." There's far too much data in the world to be an expert on everything, and as such even the most brilliant minds must assume there is knowledge outside themselves that they nevertheless do not and can't hope to possess. Do we need indubitable certainty of everything to be able to take a position? I'm saying you're probably not an expert on evolution, but assume it to be true. A doubter of evolution who demands you "prove it to me," is he asking something reasonable or unreasonable? If you try, and fail to "convince" him he's wrong to doubt something you hold as factual (like evolution), is he justified in his continued skepticism? Is an appeal to popularity ("every educated person knows it's true") going to sway him? I hope you can see the problem here and what I'm getting at. I'm not saying "the Christian God should be accepted on blind faith" (or "because a 2,000 year old book said so"). If we can appeal to evolution as an explanation for the belief in the Christian God, are we saying it's a false belief, or a true one? If we appeal to evolution and say it's given us false beliefs, might we also begin to wonder if everything else we believe is also false, and if it is, would we then begin to doubt that anything we can claim to know is possible to be known? We can't exactly step outside of our humanity to determine if we're being duped by our own brains, can we? As I see it, we can't, we can only appeal to "common" experience and devices we ourselves have created (neither of which are infallible). Now then... Do we lack free will? If everything is predetermined by naturalistic material processes, including mental processes that lead to things like "logic," then there's no way to know, if even what we're thinking right now is objective or real, right? Everything is based in philosophy, there's no way around it. It just depends upon what type of philosophical foundations you're going for. If you're assuming Naturalism, you're never going to admit something like "God" could be real, unless it was a materialistic part of nature (and hence "God" isn't "God" but a physical object or a euphemism for nature itself). The "Christian God" is something we can define, and it is not a material object or a euphemism for "the physical universe and its laws" (i.e. "nature"). A classic definition is that which nothing greater can be conceived (see Anselm, Thomas Aquinas). This rules out "God" being a physical object within the cosmos or a euphemism for something else. Hope that helps. If the argument is that I need to "show you" God as a physical object in my hand, then that's going to go nowhere, but then there are a lot of things you probably agree exist that can't be demonstrated this way, and even so it all assumes we have a common frame of reference that is also presumed to be objective (else, how do we know that logic itself is a delusion produced by physical processes)? Science itself is an excellent tool, but it's based on philosophical assumptions, which in turn our based on thought processes, which are natural processes. If nature gave us nonsense, how could we ever be sure of anything? I'm curious how you would resolve that question, Achilles.
  18. Edit: Wikipedia at least mentions some "atheistic" Vedic (pre-Hindu) groups that existed in the "final centuries BCE." Considering recorded history began around the 4th millennium BCE, that's a long time without evidence of atheists. Of course the definition has changed over time. Christians were once considered "atheists" for instance. Vedic religions are not an area I'm well studied in, so I could be wrong on that point. If we were to adopt the popular self-definition used by many folks on the internet and define "atheist" as "simply one lacking belief in the existence of any deities" (and excluding pantheists and panentheists) and define "deity" as a supernatural being greater than a human (especially, but not limited to one(s) responsible for the creation of man and/or the universe) or any ultimate being, then it would seem for much of recorded history there was no such thing. Doesn't mean it's wrong (hence those atheists who favor the "we're a higher step of evolution" claim, which is still not biological evolution).
  19. I was never big into the "version wars" but I know some people really really insist on playing 1.02 instead of 1.04. Am I correct in assuming the steam version is just the latest official patch? How about modding and all that, still possible? To be honest I stopped playing JK2 shortly before JA came out. It was a great game, but I just got tired of it. It's cool that people are still playing both games though. They're still pretty unique in the gaming world (TFU is no substitute). I would love to be able to play JK/MotS online again though...!
  20. But here we're presupposing that the fundamentalist who causes suffering is objectively wrong. From their perspective I'm sure they believe they are doing the right thing (or else they are hypocrites/liars) and may be "happy." I will freely admit that "happiness" (as in some kind of subjective feeling of well being) is not the end-all be-all of goodness. A crazed sadist is not "good" outside of his own insane mind. This could then devolve into the "what is better for society" argument between theists and atheists, which ends up typically being "as long as everybody in the society is the same, that's the best." If we view "happiness" as "happiness of humanity" that's another kettle of fish. The atheist who says he'd rather accept the "cold hard truth" rather than be "blissfully ignorant" (ie: believing that he'll go to heaven when he dies to be with his lost loved ones and a loving father deity vs. knowing he'll be dead forever after a short life no matter what he does), is he "happier" than the religious believer who is "sad" because he feels condemned by his God for his sins? The religious fanatic may be convinced he's "saved" no matter what he does, or he might be tormented thinking he'll never measure up to the religious standards he has imposed upon himself. So you can go all over the place here. But the atheist is never going to become a believer if he goes about it like this "well I KNOW this is a lie, but I'm going to force myself to believe it, because I heard it will make me happier." So any discussion along those lines isn't going to go anywhere. This isn't a matter of "just believe" as if it's an on/off switch. If it's a contest between "who is better, believers or unbelievers" it's an endless pissing contest, at least it has been a lot of places. Right, and I'm guessing none of us are from that context. But there are only two types of anything... those who were always that way (raised) and those who converted. Usually I hear this argument used against religious theists by atheists, to the tune of "you only believe that because you were raised that way" (conversely they usually then explain that they were religious until around college age then they became an atheist). People convert from one thing to another to another all throughout their life, it's very common and others never do. I get it. Is someone more right just because they never changed or someone less right because they changed their mind? (assuming of course the person who was "raised a/n X" actually believed it and wasn't just biding their time until they could come out of the closet so to speak). I know I made the right decision, and I'm happy with it. Lots of people experience disatisfaction. The question of happiness (whoever defined) is an interesting one, but I agree, not the end all be all. So one might then ask, what good reason is there to be an atheist, besides the reasons I mentioned? (ie: not "having to follow rules" or "be happier [than some other subjective standard]") According to philosophy, we can know (to a reasonable degree of certainty of course) through reason, we don't need to simply perceive the lack of a special revelation (or denial of all alleged revelations) to be disconfirmation of the god hypothesis. Just out of curiosity, is anyone reading this thread a philosophy major or have a degree in it? The atheist is either presuming lack of evidence is proof of absence or else is convinced by a philosophical exploration of the question, so I don't see there's any getting around it there. We would never give credit to a creationist who believed evolution was false, simply because he never met a scientist who could adequately convince him of it, especially if he had no understanding of science himself. That's an interesting claim. How are you defining "theism" here? Because the ancient Greeks, even the ones who explicitly denied the existence of the various pantheons typically believed in some kind of Demiurge or other figure that excludes them being "atheists." It seems to me that atheism as we know it really was a product of the enlightenment. Ironic then that we invoke philosophy (to say nothing of mathematics) as our foundation, much of which is older than 2,000 years, and some of which is also founded from the the time of the "bronze age" of superstition. As for "needing the group" we still do. The modern entrepreneur could never exist in the wild, but needs a flourishing human community with a built up infrastructure in order to step forth out of his boot straps. We just perceive it differently because we've grown up in a SOCIETY (group) that glorifies individualism and autonomy. We all had parents (or other elders) who taught us language, gave us access to resources and technology and learned to the point where we could then take advantage of a pre-existing system to declare our independence (meanwhile reaping the rewards of those who came before us)... unless of course we really grew up in log cabins we built with our own hands. Should we say if evolution is responsible for religion, that we should get rid of it? Is that "getting rid of it" an evolutionary change or just an individual assertion against nature? If so, is that right or wrong, good or bad? Just curious what you think there. There's no conflict between groups that have no conflict, that's true, but what happens when the two groups meet and let's say one has something the other wants, would a difference, say a religious difference, be an adequate excuse for conflict? Religious conflict can be contrasted with religious toleration, even pluralism. Apparently there's no guarantee of either. How about the history of philosophy? Anyhow, neither of us have met most of the atheists in the world, and never will. But if we look at a cross section, we do see a lot of North American converts from (typically conservative) Christian denominations, and a lot of people raised atheist in oppressive states, so it's not surprising if that's whom we might stereotype as atheists. The North American convert variety is the typical atheist I meet online, maybe because of their high visibility and their often missionary spirit. If I only spent time with people like me, I might find it harder to believe other types of people existed. Interesting discussion, as always.
  21. One thing I've noticed with a lot of these more "modern" PC games (typically high-end graphics, console port games, even though TFU2 is now a few years old) is that they often install and are playable and then have lots of slowdown, crashes, and graphical glitches... but that a windows restart and second launch often works much better. That doesn't answer all the problems, but I've noticed that it seems to be a pattern with some of these types of titles. Back in the old days, we pc gamers were used to windows being a slow and buggy platform, and so we were used to restarting our computers several times a day, or pretty much after every moderately sized software install. Nowadays it seems like it's these beastly huge pc games that bring that sort of thing back in focus, in that case sometimes the problems fix themselves. The steam system with some of these games introduces problems of their own. I've noticed games getting patch updates in a stealthy manner that often goof up settings or make mods suddenly not work and so on. Texture corruption always makes me think of either the system overheating or video card drives needing updates, but that's not always the case either. While these games were designed for consoles, they are usually slightly better on PC, IF you can get past the technical issues. But only marginally better (higher resolution, sparse modding options, sometimes less DRM though to be fair sometimes more, more control options), so you decide if it's worth the extra stress, since you're trying to have fun, in the end, not waste your time being bogged down by glitches. As for the flaming, it's really unnecessary...
  22. I wonder if anyone has done this or is willing to try it. Is it possible? https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=56&t=13161 I was reading that these devices aren't compatible with versions of Windows (other than 10 which is planned) but that through emulation you can run older windows versions like 95/98, so it sounds like it would be possible. Imagine a JK/MotS LAN party on your tv! Thanks in advance for anyone who knows!
  23. Qtracker reports: 197 servers, 267 players. (JK2 for reference is 52/26) And that's not even a peak hour peak day or peak hour, so it's still alive. Sadly my server has been dead for awhile and I haven't had the cash or free time to resurrect it. It still might have been the longest running MP server for the game though (Kurgan's Meatgrinder). I'd love to bring it back someday. The Force Unleashed was cool (TFU2 had better graphics and a few neat additions and though I haven't finished it people tell me the previous game had the superior storyline and character experience), but it needs a robust multiplayer option and a saber system at least as good as JK2/JA. THAT then would be the next JK game. I have said it before, the next JK game needs to have a Dark Side storyline as the main feature (though still having the option to go "good" is a must). Multiplayer and modability on the PC is key for the series, along with the ability not only to do sabers and force but also guns (and nowadays, vehicles). It needs to be a worthy successor for the series, not just cookie cutter FPS (flavor of the month COD or Halo) with a JK coat of paint. Some sort of "training mode" or tutorial included with the game to teach players the gameplay style would also be a great deal, as modern players are lazy and too used to again the cookie cutter Halo/COD type gameplay, which is definitely NOT what JK is all about.
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