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10161  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: City of Heroes/Villains Issue 12: Midnight Hour on: March 13, 2008, 01:13:33 PM
Getting back to Issue 12, Positron mentioned you'll be able to position hotkey trays vertically if you prefer. Also, if you push the hotkey bar towards the edge of your screen, you can turn it into an L-shape. Masterminds (who have a ton of pet oriented keys to keep track of sometimes) might esp. find that useful.
10162  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: City of Heroes/Villains Issue 12: Midnight Hour on: March 13, 2008, 01:07:51 PM
You *can* solo a defender or controller, but it requires some patience on the low end (on the higher end, most Controllers are like one man armies). If you've got the veterans rewards temp power goodies (staff/wand choices, and axe/Sands of Mu dark melee cone power choices), then you can make up for the lack of attack powers in the Defender/Controller sets.

Scrappers were my favorites overall and favorites to solo. Although I have a regen and a super reflexes scrapper, my lone 50 was a broadsword/invulnerability scrapper and my lone tank (38) is an invulnerabilty/stone melee tank - so I'm partial to invulnerability even if regen gets you over the hump in terms of endurance problems before stamina's available. The bummer in invuln is that the penultimate Unstoppable power crashes spectacularly (health *and* endurance drop near zero when it wears off). Some of the others are more forgiving at the end.

If you just have the patience to get a tank to the point of having stamina, then a tank becomes such you can solo almost anything in the game aside from certain "debuffing" types of elite bosses. My 38 tank couldn't, as it turns out, solo the Ourboros TF because there's an elite boss vampire (Nosferatu) who dark-debuffs you to the point you're essentially helpless (can't hit anything, can hardly heal etc.).

Part of the difficulty of soloing for me is having the patience to largely avoid toggle powers until I can get stamina (20), or being willing to shove a  lot of endurance reducers to make them bearable. If you strictly solo, you miss out on the various buffs controllers and defenders can give you to help you deal with endurance situations, among other things.
10163  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Tabula Rasa beta on: March 12, 2008, 10:35:39 PM
Patch notes for 1.6 are out. Well, with no official forums, I'll post the massively.com item on it:
http://www.massively.com/2008/03/09/tabula-rasa-patch-notes-for-1-6-are-up/

I was hoping for more content (missions, maybe a new area etc.), but they seem fixated on increasing exp multiplier modifiers and other tricks to get you leveling faster. Which, for a game where you sometimes already level too fast for your own good, seems (just imho) to be a strange tact to take.

There was a Starr Long post a while back about the "state of the game":
http://www.rgtr.com/community/community_news/tabula_rasa_state_of_the_game.html

While it's supposed to assuage people that Everything's OK, and they're just paring down a basically bloated launch team to the lean'n'mean team you want for regular updates, I'm not really convinced. They've been yakking about PAUs and Control Points, and new missions where those things face a challenge, for a long time, and it just doesn't sound like they are anywhere near getting into the game.

Since I've returned to COH and feel pretty happy there, I can share my thoughts on the two games even if they're very different (and heck, they're both by the same publisher, I don't think NCSoft cares which one I play thumbsup)...

COH?
-I prefer the animations there compared to often clumsy ones in TR.
-If you have an older system (mine dates to 2004 although the video card is recent), COH seem far, far more foriving and you don't have to turn every detail down to get a playable game.
-Even the April 2004 launch COH to me had a far more polished interface, chat system, hotkey system etc. with less obsession with DOS command line stuff (though there's plenty of command line stuff you can do if you preer that) than TR has.
-Much more interesting variety in its powersets than TR's simplified skills sets.
-There's enough quantity and variety of zones, that two characters of the same level (say, 45) may have gotten there without laboriously doing the exact same missions and combing through the same zones (as TR basically requires). I wouldn't call COH non-linear per se, just you can have at least a little different experiences from one character to the next, which I like.
-I hate to generalize, but it just seems easier (at least on weekends) to form big pickup teams in COH and have a good time. You do run into the occasional nasty person, but after a couple weeks back it already feels almost like home again. smile

TR?
-I enjoy the base defense stuff, but I just can't be happy doing that all day.
-Many missions/quests in TR to me are quite interesting, imaginative and thoughtful. More so than in COH which has an obsession with clicky glowies, and escort missions.
-The zones to me are far, far more lively than in COH, for the most part, with lots of stuff going on, enemies moving all over the place, dropping in etc. My return trip to COH has taught me that static mobs that sit and wait like a bump on a log can be boring at times (some of the post-launch zones like Striga Isle were a tad more lively).

But in TR this is all watered down with way too many "kill 25-45-60 blotzkies" missions, imho, and way too many non-instance missions that require you to basically either wait in line (which is ridiculous) to shoot something you need, or to basically be willing to out-fight other players to reach something. I'm just not a big fan of that, esp. how often it comes up in TR.

====================
Those are just my babbledy thoughts since the thread's dead and it appears we've all pretty much moved on.

I'll probably deactivate my account shortly before my next billing period. Then if they deliver on the PAUs, command control points and put a little more content in (instead of obsessing over exp modifiers, and "monster tweaks"), then perhaps I'll float back. I think if I get a new PC down the road, I'll also have a much better experience in it.

I still have fondness for the game, I just can't help thinking that stripping their launch dev team to a lean team can't really result in some magical ability to add more content or get updates out the door faster.
10164  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Champions Online (Cryptic's new MMO) on: March 12, 2008, 08:48:10 PM
Cryptic claims to have fixed that link (wasn't working with IE 7 in particular):
http://forums.champions-online.com/showthread.php?p=80021#post80021
Quote
Ok I fixed the link, IE7 wasn't downloading it correctly. Probably an issue with gzip transfers.
10165  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: City of Heroes/Villains Issue 12: Midnight Hour on: March 12, 2008, 08:39:01 PM
Main problem with Hollows (imho) is the mobs are too large for soloers or small groups to handle. If you have a big group, then it's like an Exp candy factory, but if I'm stuck soloing (like many weekdays), then it's a tough place to progress in.

They seem to indicate mob setups have been redesigned drastically to make soloing and getting around the zones easier.

Castle seemed to clarify the additional powers (nothing new, but it seems like you get 1-3 additional power choices from roughly your character equivalent in the other game -- CoV or CoH).
Quote
Every AT gains at least 1 powerset -- Masterminds only get a Secondary, no new Primary. Brutes get 2 new Primaries [revealed to be the axe and mace powers from COH's tank power sets], and 1 secondary. Everyone else gets 1 Primary and 1 Secondary.
I'm not really sure what it means as far as my Defender goes. I guess he'd get a couple choices from the Corruptor sets? I think Dr. Barium (hit 38 last night btw) could probably use another attack with secondary effects (stun, knockback etc.).

I know my L29 Controller (gravity/force field bubbles) could desperately use some sort of cone or AoE attack option. Of course he isn't meant to be a solo whirlwind, but when you can hold a big squad with grav holds and have no area attack weapon (other than maybe the shotgun temp power from Striga Isle), it's a bummer.
10166  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: City of Heroes/Villains Issue 12: Midnight Hour on: March 12, 2008, 06:25:43 PM
Er, oops, I should've included link to Positron (Matt Miller)'s "letter to the communitY" about the update and the CoX series' future hopes and plans:
http://www.plaync.com/us/news/2008/03/dev_corner_city.html
Quote
As Lead Designer on the project, I have had a lot of control over what happens in the City of Heroes game, but in the past I still had hurdles to get some great ideas actualized. With the new studio, a lot of ideas that couldn’t take hold under the old management are being implemented into the game with outstanding results.
Ouch.  stirthepot To be fair, I think Cryptic was basically hamstrung by the amount of funding NCSoft would provide. So I can't even tell if he's taking a dig at Cryptic, or at NCsoft.  icon_confused

There still seems a lot of fan speculation about maybe a paid expansion or even a followup game eventually. They hint about something Really Big down the road. The updates are great, but it *is* a 3-4 year old game now (COH in 2004; COX in 2005) that you can't even find on store shelves much anymore so it might take something new that they can push back onto shelves (or perhaps making it available on Steam or something) to grow the user base if that's still something they hope to do.
10167  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: City of Heroes/Villains Issue 12: Midnight Hour on: March 12, 2008, 06:17:42 PM
There's much grumbling at official boards that the Hollows doesn't need as much work as various other deserted zones such as Boomtown, Firebase Zulu/The Chantry (just connecting via all the floating asteroids via simple teleportion portals instead of unpredictable "propulsion chutes" would make it a more playable area), or even Crashed Rikti Mothership Site (which I think got a re-do a while back but still is largely ignored afik).

I loved the Faultline revamp way back although its single story arc didn't give much reason to stay there. The Hollows re-work seems a lot less major though.

I still think something's wonky in their data-mining because they're always claiming there are more 10-20 or 15-25 etc. level characters in the game so if you ask why there isn't more 35-40 or 40-50 content getting added or revamped, that's often been their reasoning. A lot of players (esp. now with the font smoothing) blow through 10-20 etc. so fast it seems kind of a lost cause to focus on content at those levels. I think more often people get a wee burned out around 40-45ish doing all the Peregrine Island stuff, and they could just more to do -- the Roman stuff in this update should help a little (35-50 they say).
10168  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / City of Heroes/Villains Issue 12: Midnight Hour on: March 12, 2008, 05:43:20 PM
Details announced so thought it was worth a new thread.  icon_smile

Forum page with lotta links
http://boards.cityofheroes.com/showflat.php?Cat=&Board=info&Number=10372986&bodyprev=#Post10372986

Details page
http://www.cityofheroes.com/game_update12.html
Quote
New Stuff
JOIN THE MIDNIGHT SQUAD (LEVELS 10 - 20)
The clandestine organization of mystics, scholars and mages, known only as the Midnight Squad, seeks to rebuild its numbers since the devastating assault of the Rikti Invasion. The Midnighters hold a secret that could bring the alien assault to an end, but without the help of the Heroes of Paragon City™ it will remain Lost forever.

NEW ROMAN-STYLE ZONE MAPS (LEVELS 35 - 50)
The Midnighters hold many secrets within their walls, including a highly coveted Ouroboros crystal, enabling them to travel to the far reaches of time. There is a familiar threat in an ancient land and the Midnighters need the help of both Heroes and Villains to stop it. Players step foot upon the ancient land of the Roman Cimeroran Peninsula, where they battle deadly creatures, defend an ancient city and ultimately come face to face with the enemy of time itself. Throughout this journey players uncover the mysteries of power and the origins that guide them today.

UNLOCK ROMAN-STYLE ARMOR COSTUMES
Through their accomplishments, players unlock the new Roman themed armor costume set.

Villain Epic Archetypes
Infiltrate the Arachnos organization from within! Upon reaching level 50, Villains unlock two new Epic Archetypes; Wolf Spiders and Blood Widows. They have their own unique storyline and missions, power combinations and costume sets. Branching powersets allow the Wolf Spider to specialize as either a Bane Spider or Crab Spider and the Blood Widow chooses from the Fortunata and Night Widow branches. Each brings with it unique costumes for your Arachnos duties, as well as your newfound role as a Destined One.

Powerset Proliferation

Using his newly built Resonance Manipulator, the Villain scientist known as Dr. Brainstorm™ has discovered a way to alter the energy strands which connect every Hero and Villain to their powers. This discovery has not only opened the door to new powers for his fellow Villains in the Rogue Isles™, but has also done the same for the Heroes of Paragon City ™! Specifically, new characters of almost every Hero and Villain archetype gain access to an additional primary and secondary powerset that they didn’t have access to previously. Details to come!

Hollows Zone "Gameplay Makeover"
Significant changes have been made to the Hollows zone to make it more fun! NPC encounters have been rebalanced, including new spawns, new villain groups, mission door improvements, and a mobile hospital has been added to the entrance of the zone [Hollows has no hospital, and it's really annoying for the lower level, travel-skill-less characters to trudge back there from Atlas-bj].  Additionally, Meg Mason, a new contact, has been added to give out repeatable missions.

Major Gameplay Improvements
-Eight configurable new power trays let players customize their User Interface by placing them anywhere on the screen.
-Contact display redesign: Contacts are now listed separately as Active and Inactive, and players can sort contacts by a range of criteria including Name, Zone, and Level Range.
-Inspiration Conversion: Right click an inspiration to convert three of that kind into any one inspiration of another kind.
-Level Up Boost: Upon reaching enough XP to level up (at all levels), one of each type of large inspiration is immediately cast upon your character, and health and endurance bars are immediately filled.
-Chat improvements: Right click on character names in chat window to ignore, add to friends list, invite to team, etc. Drag any item (enhancement, inspiration, salvage, etc.) into the chat window so that you and others can click a hotlink to view the complete info box. [as in WoW and its ilk, should be very helpful when trading inventions in particular]

-More Real Numbers: Players can now display stats on powers before they choose them enabling more informed power selection and new temporary powers allow players to display enemy stats.
Lots of cool stuff. I picked a good time to come back.  icon_cool While much of it falls under "quality of life" improvements, the interface is one of my favorites in MMO land and I welcome further improvements.
10169  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Eee Pc? on: March 12, 2008, 03:24:28 PM
Given how tiny the keyboard is, I'd be careful of running a hotkey-heavy game on it. I mean, you can attach a full keyboard and mouse to the USB ports I guess, but it sort of defeats the point.  icon_confused

Oh, hey, Brighthand had a pretty thorough review of a 4GB model back October:

Asus Eee PC 701 4G Review
http://www.brighthand.com/default.asp?newsID=13453

Battery life is maybe 3-4 hours if you're doing anything heavy duty with it, it seems. He answered some of my questions about heat and noise (or lack thereof):
Quote
Even with the low voltage processor and SSD drive, the Asus Eee PC produced as much heat as any other notebook in the same price range. The keyboard and bottom of the notebook got quite hot even under normal use, and the fan was always running in an attempt to keep the system cool.

Fan noise was among the quietest we’ve heard. The only way to tell the fan is blowing is to put your hand next to the air vent to feel the warm air blow past.

In my testing, the keyboard side of the Eee PC warmed up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit during normal extended use, while the bottom was at 112 degrees. I'm only listing one temperature for each side because the Eee PC is so small that they're basically only one temperature for the top and one temperature for the bottom.
If you're a child or have very tiny hands, you might be able to touch-type on it. Otherwise, it sounds like strictly index finger hunt-n-peckin'.

I'm curious how much hotter/noisier the hard-drive versions will be.

I just saw it as useful on my occasional business trips, and maybe (since my PC and TV aren't in the same room) something to have handy when something on TV tosses an URL at you. My PSP is pretty much lame as far as Web browsing goes. Even hunt'n'peckin' beats trying to use PSP buttons and a thumbstick to Web surf.  disgust
10170  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Age of Conan Delayed (one more time y'all!) on: March 11, 2008, 11:14:14 PM
I think 800 quests should keep even the most frantic power gamer entertained for at least.... oh... a week?  icon_lol

I really think one of the hardest things to do in an MMO is to make people care even a smidgen about the storyline as opposed to just frantically clicking on NPCs and quests and racing through everything as if every quest were no more interesting than going to the bathroom (don't visualize that!).  icon_neutral

So I really do have my fingers crossed the quests are as interesting and great in number as promised. I had some fun in Dungeon Runners, and while I know it's not trying to be a full fledge MMO per se, it is drowning in "kill 25 rats," "kill 45 schmucks" and kill "60 toads," etc. A few Korean MMOs I've tried over the years (like R.O.S.E. Online) are glutted with the same thing.

I don't need Shakespeare, I don't need multi-layered plotting but I do need something more interesting than "kill 75 so and so's."  Roll Eyes "Something more interesting" is a great carrot to me. And I love when characters (NPCs or what have you) change. I love in movies when you think you know a character, but he/she gradually develops into something else (good or bad). I love when gentle characters are pushed to violence, or violent characters show a tender side. Heroes that have to do something villainous, villains who do something heroic.

Blah blah blah. Sorry. I just hope AoC has even a smidgen of that kind of stuff. It wouldn't make it Better Than WoW or ensure 5 million subscribers, but I really think it would freshen up the MMO environment.
10171  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Harmony Remotes: Yay or Nay? on: March 11, 2008, 10:59:16 PM
As someone who has scoped out some of those insane $300-$800 remotest at Best Buy I say...

* Get a remote you can afford to spill beer and smear Cheetos and Fritos residue on, and taco grease on, and not fret about it.

* Get a remote that when you get really mad about your favorite team choking in the playoffs, you can afford to toss the remote into a wall and break it and not take out a loan to replace it.

* You have enough monitors and screens and touchpads in your house already. Get something where there are actual buttons you can feel. Every Channel Surfer Dude I knew is happier with that than a $300 touchscreen remote that they can't tell what buttons are by "feel."

* Don't get a remote with a fancy pants battery pack that probably runs out of juice every two weeks and requires a mad search for the rare store that carries a replacement.

* Don't buy a remote that cost more than your launch day PlayStation 3 did, for crying out loud! icon_lol

These are my cardinal Rules of Remotes. Violate them at your own risk.  Tongue

Uh, oh I'm off topic. Well, I did in fact look at the Harmony and other fancy pants model remotes. I think what scared me off is how many on the rack had been returned (i.e. packaging had been opened). Always a warning sign for me. smile Your mileage may vary and I wish you happiness if you do get one.

I've been happy with my $15 Philips replacement remote, and I'm giving my brother a slightly ritzier (maybe $25) model that can learn commands from off brand and unsupported-by-codes remotes.
10172  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: How do I share files from XP to Vista? on: March 11, 2008, 09:09:23 PM
I bought this informercial product (I really did buy it, I'm not spamming for it I swear), The Tornado, which in theory should be ideal for your situation. However, if $60 seems obscene or you're adept with networking cables, then don't bother.  icon_biggrin
http://www.thetornado.com/

Basically it's just module with some integrated file transfer software and retractable USB 2.0 cords built into it. You only need to have one of the PC/laptop screens available, plug it into both and walah.

I got it in anticipation of getting a Vista PC at some point but I've put it on the backburner for now. It's probably more worthwhile in a situation where you need to do this or transfer huge files a lot.
10173  Non-Gaming / Political / Religious Nonsense / Re: Governor Eliot Spitzer of New York tied to prostitution ring on: March 11, 2008, 06:21:10 PM
Some are missing the irony this guy made his rep as a hard-nosed DA who prosecuted, among other things, prostitution rings. Isn't it ironic, don't ya think?  disgust icon_lol At best, he's just a complete idiot and hypocrite. Unfortunately, he's not in showbiz, in which case he could go on Leno and Letterman, plead "mea culpa" and it would all gently blow over in about 2 weeks.  Roll Eyes

As a reporter for most of the last 20 years, I'm always trying to write in active voice. Somehow politicians, and baseball players accused of steroid use always find a way to speak in passive voice as if they had somehow stepped outside their body and some other humanoid had done something foolish. Something along the lines of...

"I was befallen by poor judgement and terrible decision making for which forgiveness is something I beg of you, the public."

Or maybe...

"I was injected in the buttocks by Joe Schmoe and was told by him to believe that the hypodermic was filled with Vitamin B-666."

Or...

"That may have been what was heard by my teammate. However, what was said by me was not intended to be given that type of meaning."

 Roll Eyes Ohmigod. Just beware of "passive voice" in press conferences and interviews. The more "passive," the more they're trying to avoid responsibility for their actions, at all costs.
10174  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Sins of a Solar Empire - Beta Musings on: March 11, 2008, 05:42:29 PM
Ironclad Games' exec posted some food for thought thoughts on piracy and its impact (or not?) on PC games:
http://forums.sinsofasolarempire.com/post.aspx?postid=303512
Some of his thoughts can be boiled down to "stop making Upper high-end games for PC when there aren't nearly enough hardcore gamers and gaming PC owners for you to turn a profit on the sales" [cough cough Crysis]  icon_wink

So you've got Epic's Mark Rein complaining the PC makers are pushing lame, integrated-video systems too much, resulting in too small a base of systems that can tackle newer games (therefore every succeeding Unreal Tournament PC incarnation is selling less and less due to the dwindling number of high end PCs out there, is how I read it). And Iron Clad's guy pushing for games to cater to more modest systems (and stop pushing DirectX10 and Shader 3.0 requirements etc.) where the largest possible PC gamer base can be found. An interesting tug-o-war.  icon_neutral

I'm wondering if it was inspired by that THQ Titan Quest producer who was blaming piracy at least partially for TQ's somewhat underperforming sales and Iron Lore's subsequent demise. Or maybe it's just because both developers have "Iron" in their title?  icon_smile

Beyond that, he has some good news on Sin's impressive (esp. for an "under the radar screen" game sales) sales so far.
10175  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Age of Conan Delayed (one more time y'all!) on: March 11, 2008, 12:27:41 PM
CVG (UK site) has a sort of vaguely updated preview:
http://www.computerandvideogames.com/article.php?id=184177
Quest depth is what I remain most hopeful about, though every MMO that brags about their number of quests seems to get accusations of "not enough content" shortly after launch anyway (which is me pointing at Tabula Rasa at the moment  smirk
Quote
Along with two dedicated full-time writers, there's a team of eight people solely writing quests, and another responsible for managing the lore. There'll be 800 quests ready at launch, and surprisingly few of them appear to be timesink "kill 30 rabbits" nonsense.

In fact, some genuinely inspired ideas are being touted, including solving murder mysteries, and stealth quests requiring you to sneak over rooftops and eavesdrop on NPC conversations. The large team is there to ensure quests have meaning in the game, linking them to the story, giving you the motivation to complete tasks.

I've had trouble grasping the combat system (which has been simplified a bit in the early part of the game, supposedly, and then ramps up in intricacy as you progress), but their throw-away description makes it a bit easier to understand:
Quote
Every enemy in the Robert E Howard-inspired game has three points where they can be attacked: left, right and above.

These are shown by semi-circles floating about them when targeted. If you hit them on the left, they'll defend that side, maybe leaving the right exposed. Exploit this, and take advantage of your ever-increasing set of skills and the combo system, and you'll be employing a degree of tactics not seen before in MMO battling.
10176  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: God of War: Chains of Olympus Impressions on: March 11, 2008, 04:10:19 AM
And PSP Fanboy has an item about "The Spud of War." What's that you ask???  icon_lol

Playing as the Spud of War
http://www.pspfanboy.com/2008/03/10/playing-as-the-spud-of-war/
10177  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: God of War: Chains of Olympus Impressions on: March 11, 2008, 03:56:31 AM
I did finally play this a bit. I would say it looks and animates like nothing you've ever seen on PSP.  icon_cool That said, again - if you don't like this kind of game in the first place, this won't change you mind. I find the "hot spot" and "cinematic button pressing sequences" annoying myself even if they've suddenly become the "hip" thing to include. I didn't enjoy it in the demo of Clive Barker's Undying, and I didn't find it any more fun here I'm afraid.

Aaaand, if you haven't heard, developer Ready at Dawn plans to *not* do any more PSP games after this.  crybaby They're moving onto the full size consoles from here apparently. Penny Arcade mentioned this link:
http://www.readyatdawn.com/news.php
Quote
Moving forward, we can confirm that Chains of Olympus will be our last PSP game as we’re moving on to other projects and other ideas on other consoles. We can also confirm that this will be our first and last God of War game as, just like Daxter before it, there will NOT be a PS2 port of the game. We like our games PSP exclusives
I guess one of the sad things about PSP is companies do great, memorable stuff like this, Guerrilla's Killzone: Liberation, and Slant Six's SOCOM: Tactical Strike and then *poof* that's it. Some of it's apparently just seeing PSP as a "proving ground" before moving onto full size consoles. I also get the impression an A-list PSP title is just hard to turn a profit on. It's selling better in the U.S., but it just doesn't have a massive enough user base to sell a zillion copies of a PSP game. I've also read various dev blogs that suggest piracy on PSP with retail games is becoming more widespread. So I can see where developing for consoles where that's -- knock on wood -- so far less of a problem might be more appealing for a smaller dev.
10178  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Champions Online (Cryptic's new MMO) on: March 11, 2008, 12:24:51 AM
And still, I never could get a job in public relations.  icon_lol

Just a heads up -- they've locked the "suggested Q&A questions" thread and say they'll pick a lot of fan questions from that thread, and have some answers to share soon, so that'll be something to chew on.
10179  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Eee Pc? on: March 10, 2008, 05:31:41 PM
K, but what about my thrilling questions?  icon_confused icon_smile

Laptop Blog reports the new 8GB details for U.S. market just announced:
http://blog.laptopmag.com/eee-pc-to-get-intels-diamondville-hard-drives-and-fashion-forward-style
Quote
Any information on the pricing on the new 8.9-inch model?
In the beginning and in April, around the release date, it will initially be higher and be around $499 in the United States. From the user feedback, I think if we provide a bigger screen and bigger storage it may be more popular than the 7-inch version. The second generation is very important for us.

Beyond the screen, how will the new machines be different?
The screen size will be 8.9 inches. And the storage, which was originally 4GB, will be upgraded to versions with an 8GB solid state drive and a 12 to 20GB solid state drives. We aren’t sure yet if the second machine will be 12 or 20GB because of guidelines we have to follow. The 8GB machine will run Windows XP and the 12 or the 20GB will be Linux based. The Windows XP machine will have 1GB of RAM. The screen resolution on each of these will be 1024 x 600.
It mentions they moved the speakers from the sides to the bottom of the Eee PC to make more room for a larger monitor screen.

Apparently it's selling like crazy, esp. in Japan and Europe, but they are running into some battery supply issues. It sold about 350,000 in the fourth quarter of '07.
Quote
In our hour-long interview, Shen shared that the Eee PC will get:

A 8.9-inch display and Windows XP: Confirming that the machine shown at CeBIT will come to market in April, the new Eee PC will have a 8.9-inch screen and a higher 1024 x 600-pixel resolution An 8GB SSD will be available running Windows XP. A 12GB or 20GB SSD model will be available with Xandros.

Hard Drives: Asus is considering giving customers a choice between their current offering of solid state drives and regular hard drives in the future.

Intel’s Diamondville: Shen revealed that the low-cost notebook platform will adopt Intel’s Diamondville processor
in Q2 rather than VIA’s mobile computing platform.

More Colors and Stylish Looks: In May or June, Asus will release “very stylish” versions of the Eee PC. Shen says they will have a New York City sleekness.
Lot of interesting stuff, more than I can cut and paste here. Check it out if you're interested where they're going with it.

The ASUS CEO seems to indicate they don't want to lose what's appealing about it (low cost, light weight, simple to use etc.) so they're not likely to take it bigger than 8.9-10" or bloat it into a $1,000 product. He seems to realize there is some concern notebook makers are dropping down into Eee PC's territory (price wise), and that it might hurt both markets to some extent.
10180  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Starcraft 2 - Zerg Revealed on: March 10, 2008, 05:11:58 PM
And why doesn't Blizzard trademark the term "zerg" so they get a royalty check every time someone uses it as a generic term for rushing or overwhelming an opponent in a strategy game.  icon_smile I got a little tired of it in my Company of Heroes multiplayer days. "I'm going to zerg the German base camp!" Get a dictionary, punk!  disgust icon_lol

I'm part Korean and while I'm sure all my brethren there will wear Starcraft 2 pajamas, sleep in Starcraft 2 sheets, brush their teeth with Starcraft 2 toothpaste using their Starcraft 2 toothbrushes, and then start the next day with a nice Starcraft 2 themed bowl of Starcraft 2 Frosty Sugar Ghost Bombs cereal as they watch the animated adventures of Starcraft 2 on their Starcraft 2-skinned flatscreen TV, it remains to be seen if the U.S. market will love an RTS so openly fixated on the needs of the South Korean Starcraft 2 Competition market. What about idiots like me who just want a fun RTS with an interesting storyline?  icon_neutral

10181  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: CoX Issue 11 - Dual Blades and Weapon Customization on: March 10, 2008, 04:09:46 PM
I got my Dr. Barium empathy defender to 37 last night. On weekends at least, there's no shortage of teams if you're an empathy defender.  icon_smile Still tricky to solo with, but I can handle most stuff on heroic at least.

I'm still lacking absorb pain and I'm not so uber a healer that I can keep a team going when it's overmatched, as I found out on a big team tackling a Circle of Thorns temple mish last night. But I'm really starting to enjoy it anyway. I don't complain if people get cocky or sloppy (I think I did with this character earlier), I just try to enjoy the challenge of keeping the team upright no matter how they play. You do need "line of sight" to heal though and it gets tricky in really cramped conditions (caves, temples etc). Sometimes they'll be close, you know they're in trouble, but if you can't see to them, can't heal 'em.
10182  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Champions Online (Cryptic's new MMO) on: March 10, 2008, 03:11:05 PM
I'll keep digging (and thanks for the kind comment  icon_smile). I just mean ya'll don't need me to find every dev post anymore.  icon_smile I'll still "cherry pick" the ones that seem most likely to interest people.

I ran a few tiny fan sites (Geo's Incubation Site, The Shadow's Darkstone Tomb, Ring of Red Central and 12 Angry Soldiers [devoted to a bargain game dev's military shooters]), and I sometimes miss posting news items, but I don't think my current job would let me do that regularly anymore. I just sneak in here when I should be working sometimes.  icon_wink Oddly enough, it was my dialup host that offered pretty awesome free-included Web hosting including cgi-bin access and a generous hit/bandwidth allowance. My cable provider (Cox) sux in that regard. So my fan site enthusiasm since withered away.

Well, here's an interesting tidbit. Community Guy Sporkfire said they have a Powerpoint presentation at their corporate site explaining why they believe Champion's engine database will be "improved and optimized to mitigate latency:

Lag mitigation discussion thread (with a link to the Powerpoint presentation)
http://forums.champions-online.com/showthread.php?p=74531#post74531

And dev Arkayne mentioned they'll have a Web feature up shortly explaining what the consequences of death will be in the game (I doubt they'll just parrot COH's debt system, or the "just run back from the graveyard" aspect as in WoW).

What Should the Consequences of Death Be?
http://forums.champions-online.com/showthread.php?p=75163#post75163
I'll bet this might be subject to change depending on how feedback is in the beta down the road.

I'd like to see something creatively done with it though. I'm not sure yet.But think about all the times a comic book character dies and gets resurrected.


10183  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Age of Conan Delayed (one more time y'all!) on: March 09, 2008, 07:26:58 PM
Oh if you want to catch up on the videos, Gametrailers has a lengthy page:
http://www.gametrailers.com/game/1905.html

The Character demonstration gives an idea of how things start:
http://www.gametrailers.com/player/31241.html
Apparently, right away, you pull a sword out of your...  saywhat icon_lol
10184  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Titan Quest on Vista on: March 09, 2008, 04:45:10 PM
You might check around the fan-run Titanquest.net forums (Iron Lore's dead but the fans running those forums plan to keep going):
http://www.titanquest.net/

Plug "Vista" into the search box and you'll see quite a few threads on diff situations.

Saw a post where a guy had trouble installing TQ in the 64-bit version of Vista, but not in the 32-bit. There was also a mention of needing a particular version of DirectX9 for Vista. Also, NVIDIA has various hotfixes for its videocards for Vista-related issues.

Although some of the Vista threads there deteriorate into "Vista sucks" and "No, everything runs great in Vista for me, you're a moron!" type discussions.  Roll Eyes
10185  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Age of Conan Delayed (one more time y'all!) on: March 09, 2008, 05:45:25 AM
Something called The MMO Gamer has another take from GDC, you might find it of interest though the impressions are strictly from watching a brief demo of already seen footage (no hands-on):

GDC Interview: Age of Conan Game Director Gaute Godager
http://www.mmo-gamer.com/?p=350
From the actual brief interview:
Quote
*Asked about the delays.
Gaute Godager: First of all, I understand that people get concerned, because being on the outside, not really knowing what’s going on, I’d just see one delay after another—or two delays, basically. You wonder what’s going on.

It’s basically us loving the game. It’s just us giving it enough time to mature, fix all the bugs. It’s much more important for an MMO to have a rock-solid launch than it is for us to keep a specific date. Though, I must say the 20th of May is definitely going to be the date when this game is coming out.

There is a big difference, though, on the internet between the people playing the game, our beta testers, and the people not playing our game. The beta testers whole-heartedly support us and say this is the right move for the game [That's great, although I've known plenty of folks who just play MMO betas and never sign up once they actually have to pay for it. I'm sure going back to Meredian 59, no beta tester in the history of MMOs ever thought the game was "ready to launch." Am I right? Who would ever want their "free" beta MMO to end?  stirthepot - blackjack]. And there wasn’t really one spot that had any big issues or big problems, it was more a general lifting the game in many areas and removing bugs, and polishing it, basically.
=============
*About PVP and PVE, how much time players will spend on each..
Gaute Godager: I’m not going to speculate on that, because we are going to open PvP servers and PvE servers, and it’s really up to the player. We have a deep system that allows players to get PvP progression through PvP levels.

We have several types of PvP minigames, like capture the skull, a four-man capture the flag. We have annihilation, free-for-all PvP areas, and of course the massive siege PvP system.

So, it’s really up to the player—what I can say is that people who do enjoy PvP will have a lot of different varieties of PvP to dabble in, or taste, or engulf themselves with inside Age of Conan.

*What do players expect from Conan?  nod
Everyone instantly realizes what it is, and what they want to see. They want to see blood and gore and beheadings and buxom women [I thought Conan was a sensitive guy!  icon_lol ], and something new and fresh and more realistic.
He has some interesting thoughts on the M-rating concerns too, but I think I've already gone cut 'n' paste overboard here. icon_biggrin

I think they should use his sentence there in the advertisements. In big colorful letters...
Age of Conan!
Blood and gore and beheadings and buxom women!
10186  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Rikti Invasion battle screenshots on: March 08, 2008, 08:11:24 PM
Couple more from Atlas. If nothing else, these events bring people together and the servers don't feel so empty all of a sudden.  icon_smile




After a respec trial and Manticore TF, got Dr. Barium to 36 and finally got to try out Neutron Bomb power, which is fun but not as powerful as it is visually.  icon_cool

10187  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Rikti Invasion battle screenshots on: March 08, 2008, 01:50:18 PM
Here's some pics from Rikti Invasion battles last night:

The Rikti ships are really something to see, as they drop explosives and A-bombs (I think the A-bombs spawn Rikti troops if you don't take them out within a certain amount of time, if I'm understanding it right -- or else maybe they just indicate where the troops will spawn in regardless  icon_confused) Unfortunately, you can't damage these ships at all -- if you get too close (as I did here), some sort of laser turret gun fries your arse in 1-2 shots.  icon_surprised


If several A-bombs drop in one place, then you're in for some serious chaos...


Like so. It's not exactly cerebral combat, but everyone in the zone seems to gather around these things, and it's a nice crazy change of piece. OK exp but it's not some Winter Lords thing.  drool


Similar scene over in Founder's Falls near the main fountain.



10188  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: COH Comic Book Creator stuff on: March 07, 2008, 10:44:16 PM
And for a few brief shining moments, my comic book creations were stars again.  icon_cool


And yeah I do think at this point 4 years after COH's release (April 2004) and 3 after COV (October 2005), they should be bargain basement pricing the games. I don't expect the monthly fees will ever go down, but it was wise when they went to the COH/COV covered under the one price (it wasn't that way at COV's launch).
10189  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Eee Pc? on: March 07, 2008, 10:30:31 PM
I fished around and while you can buy it online from Best Buy (Circuit City doesn't carry it), they don't carry it in stores:

'tis the 4GB SSD drive, 512MB RAM, Linux OS version for $399.99:
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=8643426&st=Eee+PC&lp=1&type=product&cp=1&id=1195597748307

fwiw, the customer reviews are pretty uniformly enthusiastic there (for many products, they're not). Though it doesn't sound like my larger hands would do well on the teeny keyboard.

Best prices from online stores I've had any experience with are Amazon ($349.99) and Buy.com ($357.61), according to Pricegrabber.

Here's Amazon's:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000ZLSXJO/ref=nosim/?tag=pricegrabber2-comp-20&creative=380333&creativeASIN=B000ZLSXJO&linkCode=asn

Just supplying links in case anyone else was interested in the customer review stuff.
10190  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: Ziff-Davis bankruptcy reorganization (1Up, EGM etc.) on: March 07, 2008, 09:10:17 PM
Maybe you're confusing them with Gamespot and the mass-exodus after the Kane & Lynch Fiasco? Or maybe all the 1Up guys are running over to Gamespot to fill the openings there? icon_biggrin
10191  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: Ziff-Davis bankruptcy reorganization (1Up, EGM etc.) on: March 07, 2008, 09:04:05 PM
1Up's editor has a blog post explaining some boring business minutae. But basically, they see it as a good thing and they'll technically have new owners once they emerge from bankruptcy, little or no more debt to deal with, and more money to spend on their sites and magazines (in theory):

That Chapter 11 thing...
http://www.1up.com/do/blogEntry?bId=8657645&publicUserId=1002446
10192  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: City of Heroes fan comics on: March 07, 2008, 06:05:46 PM
I finally got all four of my Metal Mandroid screenshot comics (done using Comic Book Creator software a couple years back -- there's now a much better 2.0 version of the software, which I've not tried yet) uploaded to Hypercomics (Planetwide's free hosting site for fan comics of all sorts).

My Metal Mandroid stuff is over here (each is about 21-22 pages long, I was trying to emulate print comics in length):
http://www.hypercomics.com/user/2220/comicbooks

You can see a pretty vast collection of City of Heroes/Villains themed fan comics at a group there (I went ahead and joined it, and added my four to it):
http://www.hypercomics.com/groups/11
(You'll see Blackjack and my Metal Mandroid avatar at the bottom of the member list there smile).

I didn't think this was worth a separate thread at this point (I searched archives here and there was never a thread or interest in Comic Book Creator), so I though I'd mention it here.
10193  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Age of Conan Delayed (one more time y'all!) on: March 07, 2008, 04:50:26 PM
Even if I'm not a WoW fan, two things to keep in mind:
-Families love playing stuff like WoW and COH (among others) together, and I'm not sure flying heads and limbs, and blood spray on your HUD (even if you can turn violence settings down) will have as wide an appeal. My favorite Turbografix-16 game was "Splatterhouse," and my favorite fighting game was probably "Die By The Sword," so you probably can tell my feelings. icon_twisted Though I'm not quite the Gore fan I once was...

-Not that retailers are very good about policing it (I saw a guy sell a Grand Theft Auto game to what appeared to be a 12 year old once, no parents in sight), but the M-rating may reduce the buying audience and perhaps prevent certain squeamish retailers (Wal-Mart etc.) from carrying it.

Well my tiny carp was that it seems like sword animations seem strictly horizontal, without a lot of variety (beyond the Kill Moves). Hopefully, it's just the footage they showed.

Eurogamer (imho) is notoriously hard on games in previews, but I like that -- do we really need another preview about how awesomolicious something is? So I was kinda impressed that they did a 360 on Age of Conan after expressing much disappointment in what they had tried a few months back.
10194  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Age of Conan Delayed (one more time y'all!) on: March 07, 2008, 03:02:23 AM
Eurogamer, which I swear is now reviewing some games so early that they're reviewing them when they're only concept art  Roll Eyes, posted an updated preview the other day (mark my words, they'll review Age of Conan a month before it goes live):

http://www.eurogamer.net/article.php?article_id=94028
They seem to think the extra months of work, and the delays, have really improved the shape of the game tremendously.
Quote
The Age of Conan we saw on those presentation PCs was looking ripped and oiled: the game visuals and interface have been buffed and what was already quite beautiful now seemed polished and presentable against the other MMOs on the market. The visuals for what we saw in San Francisco were incredibly tight - superb animation, full day-night cycle lighting, incredible view distance, and so on.

The hands-on play and high-level dungeon demo was the kind of pitch-perfect fantasy MMO that the likes of Vanguard have been grasping at without success in the last couple of years. There's very little new or surprising about this aspect of Age of Conan - aside from the way the talent systems open up or the way the level structures are delivered - and the core game is still a mix of tanks, healers and damage-dealers.

Nevertheless we now get the sense that this is simply the backbone of the game, and that Age of Conan has much more going on in the background.
They're impresed with the PVP stuff, siege warfare, fortresses etc., but they and the devs know it really won't be known how well it works on a massive scale until the game launches.
10195  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Age of Conan Delayed (one more time y'all!) on: March 07, 2008, 02:41:58 AM
Thar's a new "Epic Moments Trailer" at gametrailers:
http://www.gametrailers.com/player/31581.html

HD version over here:
http://www.gametrailers.com/player/31580.html

No doubt the game's going to be gorgeous. Whether it's any fun, and whether you can play it on a less than $3,000 gaming PC at an appreciable framerate? Who knows.  icon_confused I venture this won't be the kind of game most parents will play with their kids. Well maybe some...

"Now Bobby, just remember not to take an axe to school and do this."
"OK pop."
"Because in real life it's a whole lot messier and it makes so much more work for the janitor!"
"Oh all right." *sigh*

Lots of decapitations and fatality moves. Keep this game away from Jack Thompson.  drool icon_lol

I much prefer this kind of video (and the last couple), which let the game speak for itself, rather than some of the EA Mythic Warhammer videos where Abbott and Costello the Devs attempt to be funny without hardly letting you see any footage of the game in action.

I attended a business conference in Philly last May. On my way back to the hotel from the Liberty Bell area, there was this presumably insane guy outside the subway station with a huge python (I think, it was a huge snake that belonged in Age of Conan saywhat) waving its head and tail at us pedestrians as we walked by, shirking in horror. That's now my permanent Philly Trademark Vision.  icon_cool
10196  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: CoX Issue 11 - Dual Blades and Weapon Customization on: March 06, 2008, 08:56:10 PM
I understand, but I don't enjoy playing that way thus why I never put much time into COV.  icon_neutral My dream was to be a dual-pistols Thug MM cowboy but I just found the experience frustrating. I did at least on test server get to try some fully tricked out MMs (for some special tests, they just let your character auto-level and get to try everything).

Hey, they announced some upcoming in-game Rikti invasion events:
Quote
The Rikti Return! Thursday, March 6, 2008
The looming threat of the Rikti Invasion Force still hangs like a dark pall over Earth. Despite the best efforts of humanity, aggressive Rikti incursions still plague the planet. Advance warning systems indicate the Rikti are massing for attacks on the following dates throughout the year:

• March 7th through the 13th
• April 25th through May 1st
• June 13th through June 19th
• August 1st through August 7th
• Sept 26th through Oct 2nd
• November 14th through November 20th

Prepare for a desperate battle to save Earth from the Rikti Invasion Force! Aggressive Rikti forces will attack Paragon City and Rogue Isle with increased frequency at any time during the above dates! Some important items to remember about Rikti Invasions:

• When Zones within the cities are under attack, a world-wide alert will be issued by Vanguard. This alert will show up in your Chat window on the System channel, warning you in which zone attack is imminent.

• While the invasion is occurring, players do not receive debt while outdoors in an invaded zone.

• Those in that zone that do not wish to be at risk of Rikti attack are asked to take shelter immediately. They can do so by leaving the zone, or moving inside buildings or under cover (overpasses, parking garages, etc.).

• The combative inhabitants in a zone will move off the streets and to safer locations when a Rikti Invasion takes place.

• Rikti bombs appear to be unstable and not 100% reliable. Some do not explode on impact and only embed themselves in the ground. These bombs have been noted to detonate after a time, so take caution when you see these. They can be disarmed or delayed by inflicting damage upon them.
10197  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Eee Pc? on: March 06, 2008, 07:44:14 PM
Oh, speak of the devil, they just yesterday announced a model that has Windows XP pre-installed:

ASUS Officially Launches Eee PC with Microsoft Windows Operating System
http://eeepc.asus.com/global/news03052008.htm
Quote
Amidst great expectations, ASUS today launched the ASUS Eee PC pre-installed with Microsoft Windows XP. This new offering of the ever-popular Eee PC promises to let users enjoy an efficient online and work management experience with the incorporated Windows Live and Microsoft Works features.
Also maybe of interest, I saw an item at Brighthand about Intel's new "Atom" CPUs intended mainly for ultra-small laptops focused on Internet access. They aren't promising the Eee PC will eventually use one, but they seem to suggest it's an ideal example of what Atom's designed for.

Intel Atom Processor Designed for New Handheld Mobile Devices
http://www.brighthand.com/default.asp?newsID=13850
Quote
Intel has taken the wraps off the Atom, an upcoming family of low-power processors designed specifically for mobile Internet devices (MIDs) and other Internet-centric computers arriving later this year.

This processor will be based on an entirely new microarchitecture designed specifically for small devices and low power, while maintaining the Intel Core 2 Duo instruction set compatibility consumers are accustomed to when using a standard PC and the Internet.

... Intel also hopes this processor will be included in low-cost laptops that emphasize Internet access. An example of this class -- which Intel calls Netbooks -- is the Asus Eee PC.

Questions. Well, I'm a reporter (trade industry, basically writing about segments of the oil and chemical industries, you wouldn't invite me to a tree hugger conference  icon_lol). I don't travel a lot, but I do cover maybe two big conferences a year, and take maybe 2-3 site visit trips a year to write feature stories from.

While I wouldn't write the Great American Novel, or a massive morose book called, "The Death of the PC Gaming Platform in the 21st Century"  crybaby icon_lol, I thought it would be a handy thing to check e-mail with (the conferences are usually in hotels with Wi-Fi everywhere), and perhaps to transcribe some notes from speeches I cover.

Maybe Best Buy has this but I've yet to see one in my local stores. So my basic question is whether you can type on it for any period of time without your fingers cramping.  icon_confused

Beyond that:
-What's the "build quality" like? Does it feel like the hinge would give out after opening and closing it a few dozen times? Does the finish peel off like the hubcaps on my otherwise wonderful 1996 Toyota Corolla.  icon_razz

-Does it feel responsive or sluggish? (I am curious whether it'll be more sluggish on Windows XP than on the customized Linux the original versions have used)

-Does it overheat if you use it past a certain amount of time? Warm, hot to the touch etc.

-Does it make a racket in operation? I'm notoriously noise-sensitive (I once ate a $150 return fee on a Micro Center PC because it made a racket like a 747 jet engine in use).

-I read dimensions and such but is it easy to carry? Does it feel too "slippery" to carry safely?

-On the current Linux models, is there any difficulty converting text documents to MS Word and back? I'm not an MS Word fan per se, but it's what we use at my office.

Thanks for any insights. smile
10198  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: CoX Issue 11 - Dual Blades and Weapon Customization on: March 06, 2008, 02:30:33 PM
I forgot I did some COH stuff with Comic Book Creator (Planetwide released a Comic Book Creator 2 that adds a lot of audio features, among other things - http://www.mycomicbookcreator.com/products/detail/description.html?id=41). Planetwide is probably majorly bummed about Marvel Universe's demise. They've been doing well selling customized version of CBC (for games, or for specific comic brands).

I'm going to see about posting my old 2006 work at Hypercomics. Here's Metal Mandroid issue #1:
http://www.hypercomics.com/comicbooks/blackjack/metal_mandroid_1_0?
I did about three issues before burning out on the whole idea. I belatedly figured out there was a hotkey to remove interface stuff quickly, which would've made this earlier stuff look less "game-like." But really I was trying to help promote the game, and I poured in some maudlinness from my own life at the time. smile

Doesn't display quite as crisply as I'd like, but oh well. I was using a CRT monitor at 1024X768 at the time.

MM is basically a riff on Iron Man and The Six Million Dollar Man. Although there was in fact a little bit character in the Marvel universe called Mandroid (a S.H.I.E.L.D. creation), that was quite a bit different and I've never (knock on wood) been bothered by NCSoft to change the name. smile

There are soooo many new emotes (cell phones, cameras, the radio mission gadget, etc.) that would've helped with those book ideas.  tear icon_lol
10199  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: CoX Issue 11 - Dual Blades and Weapon Customization on: March 06, 2008, 01:42:35 PM
The Corruptor is COV's equivalent to a blaster, but is not exactly the same thing (has some different strengths).

A dev (Back Alley Brawler) pointed out a COH Wiki entry that has pics of all the different weapon customizations in both COH and COV (note that that COH/COV tend to share the same customization options for an equivalent class):
http://cityofheroes.wikia.com/wiki/Custom_Weapons

You can usually customize the colors at the costume shop too unless the item is too skinny to support the option (certain swords for example).

I checked on my villains a bit. I had a military themed Mastermind at 21, and a Thugs Mastermind that uses dual pistols at 14. Other than that, just a bunch in single digits, and maybe a stalker at 10. I really thought I'd love Masterminding but I found them (at the levels I could use them) horrific endurance-burners and the various low-medium level pets were not terribly effective. If I'd gotten any MM into the upper 20s and 30s I'm sure I would've had a better feeling but I lacked the patience.
10200  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Steve Jobs interview at Fortune on: March 05, 2008, 10:35:10 PM
ba-dump-bump  Flog that man! icon_lol

Oh man that profile article has so many great passages. One chestnut:
Quote
Jobs himself judges the world in binary terms. Products, in his view, are "insanely great" or "shi*." One is facing death from cancer or "cured." Subordinates are geniuses or "bozos," indispensable or no longer relevant. People in his orbit regularly flip, at a second's notice, from one category to another, in what early Apple colleagues came to call his "hero-shi*head roller coaster."
[I self censored smile-bj]
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