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Everything posted by jrrtoken

  1. (This BBCode requires its accompanying plugin to work properly.)
  2. I haven't played Skyrim yet, but everything that I've seen across the web gives the impression that this is just an upgraded fork of Bethesda's Gamebryo, and not the fresh-from-scratch Creation Engine. Of course, the UI seems to be an overhaul (in the negative sense) but everything else is just plain old Oblivion 2.0. The Radiant AI is wonky as seen by the buckethead stealth action, but this vid pretty much confirms that the ragdoll physics system and the death sequence is lifted straight from Fallout 3, bloody lens blur and all: [YOUTUBE=hd]-0Gw5DM4TIo[/YOUTUBE]
  3. Got the invite. Kinda ironic, as I have no real intention to buy this game at all, but here I am. Maybe, just maybe, it'll change my mind about TOR. Nah; who am I kidding?
  4. The funny thing is, there's a great probability that that'll be the end-result. Feel free to see the plethora AAA-calibre MMOs retrofitted into the F2P model a year down the road. I'm really not expecting them to do it F2P from the get-go - that'd be immediate financial ruin - but I'll wager that somewhere it'll be brought up as a possibility.
  5. Haha, nope. I'm sorry, but regardless pf what the subscription fees have been for every other MMO since the dawn of time, that's still a reedikulous amount for a bloody video game. And don't give me the speel about "it's an MMO, it's an ever-persistent stream of new content"; you can't convince me to invest $60 down plus ~3x that per year. Honestly. If this was free-to-play, or took the Guild Wars route, I'd be much more convinced to shell out my burning money. Sadly, I have more important games to invest in.
  6. Well, if we define the hundreds of government officials and civilians that have been systematically murdered by Mexican drug cartels in the past two years as "drug-related violence", then I guess that does that does narrow the playing field to AQ as prime terrorist #1.
  7. Can't believe we haven't had a thread about this yet... Well, there's not much to say, other than organizations with hardline, anti-immigration and anti-multiculturalism views, like the EDL, are pretty much crippled. The same goes for the whole anti-Sharia sensationalism in the U.S. It'd be interesting to see how the legal system in Norway will respond to Breivik's crimes... specifically the maximum sentence of ~21 years.
  8. Hated the new music number at Jabba's Palace; I'm embarrassed to even watch it. I mean, the music isn't really at fault, it's just that f****** cartoon character's solo at the end. Hell, compared to this guy I got nothing against Jar-Jar. The same goes for the ending of RotJ, and how they replaced the stupid Ewok song with an even stupider orchestral arrangement. I mean, the scene is edited specifically for the Stormtrooper-helmet marimbas, and all of the sound effects of the celebration is basically dubbed over by the piece. Just how necessary is it, really? Still, all of these are over-shadowed by the heresy of heresies: the replacement of kind, elderly Anakin with a demented would-be rapist.
  9. That's the overarching issue: the to-be canon FemShep is ultimately what the masses want rather than what the developers would deem "appropriate" for the game. As per the first installment, the "appropriate" FemShep has already been selected, and I'll give BioWare credible props for making her look more believable than many other female video game protagonists. Hell, she's more believable than ChauvShep's Cro-Magnon-inspired space marine pastiche. With the FemShep candidates, all of the options have been based on analyses and aggregations to what "the public would want" as a FemShep, rather than what everyone would be perfectly a-OK with if they just stuck with the default. It's an "ideal" FemShep, and elicits feelings on what would be the "ideal" woman in player's minds, in this case Victoria's Secret Model #L45J1. Sometimes, the people can make stupid decisions, and ultimately it's better if the developer just makes up their own appropriate design rather than listening to any other bloke. It's why we often can't have smart things in games (or any mass media), because the "what's popular must be right, right?" mentality caters to the perceived lowest common denominator. It's lowering the bar for a trope's sake. As do I, but the thing about default FemShep is that she isn't hypersexualized and is actually believably-designed. With this contest, I'm given a predetermined render of six variations of the same face, and am asked to pick "what's the best?" Apparently "what's the best" implicitly corresponds to "what's the most attractive", and in this case the sample population seems seems to favor the protagonist's typical blonde love interest. By this reasoning, I guess Dr. Chakwas should also be in her mid-20's and have a C-cup. Mm. Yeah. But they didn't have to pander to f****** everyone. It shows some sort of insecurity with their already-decent standard for FemShep, frankly.
  10. Irrelevant. If any of the candidates aren't possible FaceGen permutations, then this is all just marketing fluff. The key difference in all of this is that I can play box art ChauvShep, even if it is a direct scan of a model's face; any of the FemSheps are basically impossible to recreate in ME1&2. So... it's all just marketing eye-candy. Additionally, this entire competition is really just about what pleases the aggregated masses, particularly the majority of the player base that will never play FemShep, rather than the 18% that do. This is particularly apparent when the leading candidate is white, blonde, and blue-eyed. Mm, so much for space democracy.
  11. The faces are too perfect to be based on the in-game facegen... I don't think you can get anywhere close to #4, 5, or 6. None of them also resemble anything close to default FemShep. Then again, that isn't exactly a downside considering that FemShep has an ever-lively expression shared only by the Borg Queen.
  12. I'm not shelling out any money to EA until I know the explicit details of their subscription model. That being said, do they really expect us to spend $10 more than standard PC titles, just for an MMO? I mean, people are going to be paying hundreds more in the long view, so why value it as a standalone, AAA console game? Why not $30, or $40? What if I end up hating this game after the free 30-day agreement expires, and I want to cancel my subscription? There's $60 down the crapper. FFS. And if I were to pay $150 for the ubermenschen Collector's Edition, all I really want is the damned soundtrack.
  13. Anyone else expecting this to be another tumor of a port that was GTA IV? Rockstar's stance on the PC market is apathetic and half-assed to the point of passive aggression. It's a big "piss-off" to PC gamers, as if it's aimed to spite everyone who wanted to throw money at Rockstar for a game.
  14. Played the demo. I don't know, there's not a lot to say. It's a very average action RPG... and that's about it. It's not a bad game, mind you, there's just nothing really appealing here. The game plays it safe when it comes to gameplay; it doesn't take any risks. Combat is standard click-'n-slash, augmented by The Witcher's combat stances for basic tactics. You have special abilities that amount to "knockdown", "rage", etc., that are upgraded through standard character progression. I guess there's a lot of loot, complete with a near-infinite armor & arms permutations. Then again, I've never understood the appeal for oodles of pick-ups. The writing is... average. Not really mediocre, but nothing in-your-face that's typical from Obsidian. The same goes for the voice-acting. The music on the other hand, is pretty damn good. It's generic Oblivion, high-fantasy fare, but with more bravado and orchestration. Honestly, I wouldn't mind buying this game for the soundtrack alone. Graphics are good. When I mean good, I mean it looks "sufficient" for the mainstream gamer, and doesn't cut corners with any aspect. Textures look bland and muddy, but there's still some definition to it; this a console game, really, not the Witcher 2. The shadows and lighting are rather impressive, however, and this definitely is the Onyx Engine's strong suit here. There's been a lot of complaints over the control scheme with standard mouse & keyboard. Basically, if you tolerated the camera in The Witcher and KotOR, then DSIII isn't much different. It's leaps and bounds over NWN2, but still nothing intuitive enough for a quasi-isometric paradigm. I've heard that using an Xbox 360 controller works wonders, but makes sense considering the consolized focus. Speaking of consoles, the interface is built for those playing ten feet away from the screen. Big font sizes and UI elements abound. It's really atrocious for all PC configurations, but most PC players should be used to this schtick by now. Technically speaking, this is most likely Obsidian's most solid game. The Onyx Engine is relatively well-optimized and still looks decent and pretty; I'm running with all graphics on "High", 2x MSAA, 16x AF, V-sync @ 1366x768 on an ATI 5650. Haven't had any crashes, bugs, glitches of any sort, but this is still just a demo, however. Overall, it's a standard game. Nothing to run out and buy immediately, but nothing to really piss at either. For an Obsidian game, it's pretty uninteresting and generic, and is really just "another game" that will most likely sell moderately and have an "average" critical reception, but nothing to really write home about. Kind of disappointed knowing the developer's reputation, but not really grossly pissed either.
  15. I was referring to the coverage that depicted "Muslims celebrating 9/11" was simply that; "Muslims celebrating 9/11". The connotation that was displayed when media showed those scenes is that "Muslims" includes Muslims anywhere and everywhere, and that they are all are jubilant at the mass murder of Americans. My quotes weren't a question of self-identity and faith vis-a-vis questionable ethics, but rather a criticism of the overgeneralization and homogenization of Muslim-majority societies that was present in the scenes of 9/11-fest. Anything else is simply reading too much into it, frankly. I wasn't really making a correlation between a rise of radical Islamism and the downfall of Mubarak, but rather illustrating the point that bin Laden's death isn't the ragtag Rebel Alliance taking down the expansive Galactic Empire here; hell, someone can probably argue that it's the opposite. My point was that it's hardly some grand triumph of good over evil with insurmountable odds factored in; it's more like a cat catching a mouse. I sure don't like vermin in my house any day, but it's not like the cat took on a pack of wolves here: it's just a goddamn mouse, even if it is a big one.
  16. I wasn't drawing any correlation between the supposed jubilation of "Muslims" on 9/11 with what was experienced today, simply because the situation is incomparable. Quite frankly, there isn't much reason to celebrate here, as irrespective of bin Laden's death, there still remains a considerable threat; a threat that during the manhunt for bin Laden has probably increased to a new level of prominence. Even with the figurehead toppled, there's still the fragmentary cells that will follow the power vacuum, as well as the semi-independent al-Qaeda offshoots that have been operating without direct administration from bin Laden prior to his passing. Quite frankly, it's as monumental as the execution of Saddam Hussein (i.e. of petty consequence). I never claimed any of that; I was just saying that the celebrations could be perceived simply as such. One could compare it to the foolhardiness of "Mission Accomplished", in that it's a gross mischaracterization of a "victory". As I've pointed out, I'm criticizing the fanfare that has been made by some; the insistence that this is a game-changing, tide-turning victory in the War on Terror. The resignation of Mubarak is in many ways more celebratory in terms of against-the-odds, "the bigger they are, the mightier they fall" circumstances that makes this incident seem more like the execution of an obscure ideologue who has little absolute authority to make a tremendous difference.
  17. I have to admit, I thought this was pretty much an April Fool's joke; but after a while it was pretty disarming that this actually happened. Honestly, I'd thought that he'd just end up like Jimmy Hoffa in a netherworld of eternal obscurity. P. cool. Though, I have to admit, most of the images of Americans celebrating gives off a really overly-jingoistic vibe. Unfortunately, it reinforces the stereotype of Americans as debased, aggressive (DEY DOOK ER JOBS) ignoramuses. I guess you can just say "Well, they're New Yorkers", but whatever. Pretty much; it's as much a Muslim tradition as cremation is a Hindu one. Really, most Muslims are good ol' fashioned, buried-in-the-ground; there's nothing particularly exclusively Muslim (read: exotic paganism) about it.
  18. I think the problem is that both parties have reasoned that an acute, vocal minority must be representative of an entire religion, when in fact, they're probably just representative of a particular, radical ideology that is based on religious themes. Terry Jones certainly isn't representative of Christianity as a whole, and the Afghanis who rioted (or to be more accurate, the religious elite who espoused the violent rhetoric) certainly aren't representative of Islam as a whole.
  19. Besides the previous vandalism of Giffords' office, and a general sense of political dislike of Giffords by some, and now the shooting, there's enough to at least be suspicious of some sort of pseudo-association. Your insistence that lack of current proof equates to a false argument in this context is equally damning as suggesting that there is a direct implication between the two (which, if you've been comprehensively reading my posts, isn't what I've been saying at all). I suppose that this going to play out as a weak vs. strong (a)theism debacle. 'Kay. Your point is what exactly? That the author might possess tendencies to murder Giffords? That could be plausible, but I don't really know either way.
  20. I don't have any empirical evidence to confirm or deny a link between Loughner and Tea Party literature. I also don't have the ability to probe other's minds, revealing their true motivations. Unlike myself, you seem to posses both, or simply a talent for reapplying standards per convenience.
  21. Thanks, Jae; I abduct and murder children for their coveted baking blood, too. Please indicate where I claimed that the theory was immutably factual and accurate. I suggested it as a possible, although indirect, motive for the murder. As of writing, the profile of Loughner suggests that he indiscriminately borrowed from any number of influences to form a hodge-podge manifesto that didn't conform to any particular contemporary political ideology. I doubt that he even identified with the Tea Party movement, but for all anyone knows, trying to discern what truly influenced him and what was simply "filler" material is becoming a folly, as per his psychological profile. For example, the Department of Homeland Security suggested that Loughner might have been influenced by a white-supremicist publication. Do we know that he was influenced by said publication? No, and in fact, the DHS later said that they haven't found any apparent connection between the two. Does this mean that the original speculation was absolutely pointless, or evidence has been found that completely debunks the theory? No and no. The initial Tea Party implication would also fall under this paradigm.
  22. Compared to what, exactly? The Hebrews weren't known for pacifistic humanism either. Every time a violence-laden narrative from any scripture is interpreted through a modern-day lens, two conclusions are met: either it's "See! This proves that [religious adherents] are nothing but [moral ill]-ers!", or it's "No, no, no; you're looking at it in the wrong light! Real [religious tradition] is against that entirely!" Naturally, I'd wager that both of these explanations are equally deluded and idealistic in form.
  23. I am suggesting that there is a possible connection between the vandalism of Giffords' office earlier in the year, the mention of Giffords as a "target" for specific political pressure, and now the shooting, is a currently-valid theory for the shooter's motive. Any investigation which considers the string of incidents to be a pure coincidence isn't being productive whatsoever, even if it means deducing false leads from legitimate ones. I'm not debating that the shooter had a particular, concrete motive to downplay his insanity, I am simply suggesting that his bizzaro world-lens might have been conducive to his violence being influenced by a rather populist political movement. Yes, it could be absolutely anything, but considering all of the evidence provided, to rule out that possibility would be foolhardy. When testimony after documented testimony proved to be accurate, then maybe that was somewhat justified. Any investigation needs a variety of motives, even if they all turn out to be absolutely wrong in the end. Yeah, it often leads to unfair discrimination against a variety of attributes of any given person, but it's pretty damn unavoidable. When it feeds an entire profiling division on strictly narrow paradigms, then it's problematic.
  24. And you have evidence to suggest otherwise? Did you even read my previous post? I do not accuse the Tea Party for supporting an inherently violent agenda, nor do I see the shooter supporting the Tea Party on any foundation; the guy, by any situation, probably interpreted rhetoric in his own, violent way. And don't ask how/where he could have viewed Tea Party literature; any schizo watching Fox News could have interpreted the slightest hint of counter-administration monologuing as a call to action. The same can be said for any political pundit, but since the Tea Party is the most popular counter-political movement currently, that would obviously be the first source to suspect.
  25. It's a populist movement with populist rhetoric that pulls at peoples emotions, no matter how uncouthly sensationalist it might be. It'd probably be accurate to say that most of its "grassroots" supporters don't really care about the philosophy or ideology behind the movement, but rather, the apparent meaning and charisma associated with it; "Taking the government back," and other messages can be co-opted by anyone for anything, no matter how disassociated it might be. You forgot to mention that he admired Mein Kampf. However, unlike your Guevara-clad liberal narrative, I don't believe that the shooter adheres to any specific political spectrum, but instead might have been motivated by the rhetoric of the Tea Party movement, without identifying himself with it. He's simply co-opting the message to his own gains, without aligning himself with the message. So although the core philosophy of the Tea Party is not what is being debated as conducive to violence and radicalization, but rather, its own rhetoric.
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