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Tycho / 3 days ago

There is a very fixed menu of ingredients at Taco Bell; it can be conceived of as an alternative to the standard Periodic Table, whose quasi-edible permutations constitute a distinct flavorverse.  Far Cry 4 has a similar catalog of “elements,” like Honey Badger, Falcon, Tuk-Tuk, Assault Rifle, Boar, and so on.  (I would consider AK-47 an isotope of Assault Rifle).  After the latest of Gabriel’s misadventures, it became clear that he was basically dipping a ladle in that soup of possible events and coming up with treachery every time.  He was, in effect, panning for devastation.  And the creatures of that place responded in kind.

I haven’t talked about the Master Chief Collection here because I have a) been playing other games to completion and b) because I can’t really play it.  Not because I don’t want to, but because it apparently doesn’t want me to.

As a means of instructing the next generation, like in the case of Gabriel (I refer here, to both Gabriels; I refer to the Gabriel Continuum) it must be considered an unmatched offering.  Young people have no problem with the graphics in Minecraft, where each “pixel” of that world is a gigantic chunk the size of a safe you can break off and then relentlessly combinate.  But if a game is not explicitly made from what look to be 16-bit era pixel art or the aforementioned cubes, it needs to be essentially photorealistic or it is “full of fail.”  Remasters of the first two games coupled with uprezzed latter episodes help bridge the gap for would be educators.  That part is all well and good and I understand it can be absorbed at the proper rate.

For me, there has always been something goofed about Halo Multiplayer, in that the most revelatory mode to me - what is generally termed Big Team Battle - barely worked most of the time.  You’d get good games here and there, and when you found them, you tried to stick around.  Dedicated servers for this mode were always the fantasy.  I feel confident that I advocated for deddis as a definitional feature of Xbox Live even back then, before the Azure platform which has kinda sorta made that a reality for some games.  So a 1080p, 60 frame version of the game with the server handled elsewhere is like a prophecy come to life.  Last night, it couldn’t even get some kind of matchmaking data to start searching for a game.  I let it go for awhile, put the kids to bed, and when I came back it was still there.  It was patting the pockets of its coat and slacks, like a man with Alzheimer’s searching for a wallet he has never owned.

Like with Unity, I can’t really bring myself to be angry about it.  It wouldn’t make me angry if someone else were angry, that’s legit.  For my part, I’m genuinely confused about why they would do this to customers.  These are flagship titles, and these issues are completely avoidable.  They have brought me to a juncture where I feel compelled to use my Dad voice; I don’t want an apology.  I want you to be better.

(CW)TB out.

Patting myself on the back

I am really enjoying Dragon Age: Inquisition. One of my favorite features is the War Room with its massive map of the regions. Your party navigates this map and unlocks new locations on it by spending “Power” which you can earn by completing missions. This is super fun.

What’s cool is it’s actually almost identical to a system I created for my old D&D campaign. When I decided to try and run a sandbox style game I created a world map that the party would navigate by spending “resolve”. They spent resolve tokens to move to and unlock new areas of the map. You can read my breakdown of how the system functioned right here if you’re interested.

I’m not saying they ripped me off or anything like that. I’m sure plenty of other games have used a similar system in the past. I cooked this one up on my own though and it’s neat to see that another group of game designers I admire came up with something so close. It just makes me feel like a cool guy.

-Gabe out

I’m a very good driver

Yesterday I was playing some Farcry 4 here at the office. Robert came out and watched for a bit. He was unimpressed with my driving skills. I found a rad little Tuk-Tuk and told him I was gonna show him some incredible driving. This is the result:


-Gabe out

 

Tycho / 5 days ago

He’s playing Dragon Age!

When I advocate here in this realm, in this blue place, I am mostly trying to convince my compatriot.  I am glad you are here and I hope that you find it of use.  But I find that I can cobble together some fairly elaborate persuasion if I think he is the target.  Right?  It’s like when Goku was gravity training.  Sort of.  If I can make that case to him, I can make it to anybody.

Sometimes I will say that he wouldn’t like something when it is amazing and I secretly want him to like it the most.  It’s way more fun to discover something yourself, you want ownership over this kind of stuff.  And I don’t want it to seem like a victory or something to lord over him, or whatever.  But it’s a victory, and I won!  No, not really.  But yes!

Anyway, the hat problem he has - and the problem you might have also - can be trivially resolved!  Go into Options, click on Interface, find the thing that looks like this:

And make it look like this!

Let us never speak of it again.  It won’t fix the problem where you accidentally flirt with someone and then they legitimately flirt back, something which also happens in real life.  I definitely don’t want to have sex with a minotaur, though.  That’s not one of my things.  Now I gotta adventure with this dude and shit’s gonna be all weird.  Am I right, ladies?!

We popped in the new Far Cry yesterday, just to see, and it quickly attracted a crowd.  Every Far Cry now apparently has to have a weirdly charismatic foe, and the new one got ‘em going; “open world” games offer unparalleled entertainment for the spectator.  In fact, I think a Spectator might even be required.  It’s something to do with the way eyes work, and feel free to test this assertion at your own house: people who are not being mauled by carnivores have a much easier time catching the twinkle of a partially hidden cache.  The game provided one of the best gaming “minutes” of the year already, though: we saw a little rustle in the brush, and a little creature shuffled out, except it was a honey badger or some shit and it tried to kill us.  Eventually we had it by the scruff of the neck, saying unto to him, “WHAT IS YOUR DEAL,” and by the time we’d thrown him back to the ground a hawk started raking our scalp so we stole a four wheeler and in our attempt to escape these beasts drove it straight off a cliff.

I laughed so hard that I stopped receiving oxygen and my vision became splotchy.  But I’d also seen enough of their environment to be really convinced by it, to the extent that I wondered what an RPG of the Bethesda variety would look like in it.  I didn’t wonder about it very long, though, because Far Cry is an RPG.  They already did what I was thinking about, they just made an RPG with all the trappings of a mainstream genre that people buy in droves.  This is a game where you earn XP and craft better wallets.  The fact that you’re holding a gun as opposed to a wand is something for the sages to mull over.

Meth is supposed to be super bad for you, that’s what I read, but I think if I were up for a week straight I could deal with these muhfuckin’ Dragon Age rifts on the double.  I could even start on Far Cry myself; perhaps I could secure chrome sufficient to help my friends crack camps in co-op.  I’m gonna see how many meths you need for that.  Like, how many individual meths.

(CW)TB out.

Diorblo

I spent the weekend playing a lot of games but not the games I expected. I tried to get into the new AC Unity but just couldn’t do it. It looks amazing but I found the game super boring. I wonder if the reason I liked Black Flag so much was because it wasn’t like a traditional AC game. I beat COD’s single player campaign and thought I’d dig into the multiplayer but ended up back in Destiny for my FPS fix. I think if I had my freinds on the PS4 it might be different. I tried switching over to the Xbox One to play with them but that only lasted one night. I spent the most time this weekend playing Diablo 3 on the PS4. I had grabbed it on Friday when I was sick and looking for something to play. I thought I’d just check it out real quick and ended up playing for three hours straight. When Kara got home she saw me wrapped up in a blanket on the couch and said. “why are you playing Diablo 3…without me!”

We had played a bit on the PC but it didn’t really stick. She picked up a controller and popped into my game. Pretty soon the two of us were hooked. “This is so much better than playing on the computer.” she told me. Pretty soon my 10 year old turned off Minecraft and came in to see what we were doing. “Can I play?” he asked. I gave him the third controller and he jumped in with a Crusader. I have to agree Diablo 3 is much better as a couch game. We kept coming back to it over the weekend and had a blast.

Tycho says he doesn’t think I’ll like Dragon Age: Inquisition but I have to see for myself. I did the pre-install on the PS4 last night and I’m looking forward to checking it out tonight. I also grabbed Farcry 4 while I was in there but I don’t know how I’m supposed to find time to play all this stuff.

I know some people like to see the behind the making of stuff on our larger comic projects. Here are a couple images showing you the process for the latest page of Automata. The first one here is my original sketch for the page.

Here is the inked page ready to be colored.

I’ve been getting lots of nice comments on Silverside so thank you for that. I’m glad you guys like Sam and Carl as much as we do.

-Gabe out




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