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9961  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: October 13, 2008, 09:52:21 PM
OK I think finally I'm getting back by that Best Buy for the LG drive. If they have sold out since I saw it last week, you will hear the sound of me banging my skull against the front door there.  puke

Update: Did you hear the sound of my bloody forehead banging against the Best Buy door? I don't know what the heck happened with the several stores in my area having plenty in stock Thursday and now *poof*.
9962  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Turbine West studio formed (w/ David Brevik) on: October 13, 2008, 06:29:57 PM
Although Turbine forming a studio with one of Diablo/Diablo II's creators would've been more exciting pre-Hellgate: London  Roll Eyes, it still sounds interesting:

http://www.bluesnews.com/cgi-bin/articles.pl?show=835

Don't look for much detail in the release though:
Quote
Turbine, Inc., a premier creator and operator of massive, persistent online worlds, today announced the opening of a new studio located in Redwood City, CA. The new studio will help drive Turbine’s rapid growth and further accelerate Turbine’s goal of becoming a global leader in online entertainment. Turbine also announced the hiring of Dave Brevik as Creative Director, Jeff Lind as Engineering Director and Matt McKnight as Studio Director of its new California studio. The new studio will be a vital part of Turbine’s corporate vision as it brings new titles to market, expands the platforms it supports and introduces new technologies to expand and grow the communities that are the foundation of online games.

“The opening of our West coast studio is a major milestone in Turbine’s long-term growth plans as it allows us to complement the outstanding talent we have on the East coast with the pool of extraordinary talent available on the West coast,” said Jim Crowley, president and CEO of Turbine, Inc. “Turbine is fast becoming the place to be for those looking to create the new generation of cross platform MMOs. We are delighted that Dave, Jeff and Matt have joined us in this effort and we look forward to further announcements as we continue to expand this team.”
Maybe Brevik can get back on track with someone else handling all that financial stuff and using a game engine that already exists. Starting from scratch, as I'm sure he learned with HG, is ... hell.  icon_razz
9963  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Left 4 Dead. You are not ready. on: October 13, 2008, 04:44:49 PM
Thanks for the suggestion, I'll try to look that up tonight.

In the original Half-life, there was a console command that would give you a third person view, albeit with a very crude Gorden Freeman character model (it wasn't designed to ever be a 3rd person game but maybe they put it in there for some occasional debugging situations). It didn't really help with my nausea though at the time.

My theory has been that it has more to do with how a game handles the movement of your own character. If it's sort of a step-by-step motion that emulates walking (Medal of Honor: Allied Assault comes to mind, and many other military shooters have less effect on me), I'm OK most of the time; if it's more of a gliding, "weightless" type of movement (Half-Life, or even Descent comes to mind), then I'm hopeless.

The worst motion sickness I ever had was about in 2000, a former reporter friend of mine invited me over to a friend's house for a massive Halo local network event (in several different rooms in the house). I actually was impressing them with my playing skills (having never played it before), but a wave of motion sickness hit me so hard I spent much of the night in the bathroom thinking I had to throw up - I didn't, but basically I sat on the corner of a couch turning green rest of the evening, and I couldn't even watch other people play without getting queasy again. I was able to enjoy the PC release of Halo to some extent, without those problems though.

Left 4 Dead looks so fun, and it's so rare to see co-op (as opposed to team vs. team or DM) in this genre, so I'm inclined to get it even if I have to take mixtures of Dramamine and No-Doz. Although taking Dramamine for gaming has never cured my nausea, it's just made me feel sick in a different way.  icon_razz
9964  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Left 4 Dead. You are not ready. on: October 13, 2008, 01:49:42 AM
I'm assuming this is first person only? Both Half-Lifes gave me severe motion sickness, and I've sadly had to steer clear pretty much of anything using the engine that isn't third person (I'm embarassed to say i received Portal as an Xmas gift last year and still have yet to open it). There are plenty of FPSs that don't do that to me, I've never quite figured out why it's so bad for me in HL 1/2.

Otherwise, the game totally screams out to me since I've been dying for co-op any thing for some time now.  icon_cool

And c'mon, if you're gonna pimp something, the official site is a requirement.  Bring your own!
http://www.l4d.com/
http://www.l4d.com/news.html

And maybe an old July Gametrailers Doug Lombardi wallkthrough video too:
http://www.gametrailers.com/player/36843.html

And of course "Lego Left 4 Dead"  icon_lol
http://www.l4d.com/blog/post.php?id=1862

Looks like a wonderful hoot. I wish I had paid more attention to it.  icon_smile
9965  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: October 12, 2008, 08:34:33 PM
I don't really think fan noise is an issue - the hard drive spinning probably is more noticeable to my over-sensitive ears but it's nothing terribly annoying.

For the second time I saw an elderly person tinkering with an AA1, as well as an older Eee PC at a Best Buy today (I was trying to find that LG drive but it wasn't in stock there like the Web site said). I'm starting to think there's an alternative market the makers could cater to.

I just dunno if I'd recommend it for seniors as a regular computer. I think a larger screen at a modest resolution with icons/letters set to large is a better fit.

Still, I've toyed with getting one of these USB key dialup modems and setting mine up at my mom's house and just letting her play with it a bit. She has tiny hands, so I don't think that'd be a problem.
9966  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Starcraft 2: The Milking? on: October 12, 2008, 08:24:52 PM
Maybe, but rest assured that outside this relative bastion of rationality here (GT), most boards about the game are awash with people angry about all this (you can see that just in the Joystiq article's comments). And I mean, if you ask a mob of Blizzard fans at a convention if they "want more Starcraft," it's a given they'll all scream and cheer. What does Pardo think they're going to do, boo?  icon_razz

If you ask them if they want to pay $130 to $150 to get the "full game" (which is how a lot of players are going to view it, no matter how Blizz tries to spin the other campaigns as expansions), if they want to pay $50 for an RTS that only has one single player campaign in it (no matter how groovy, full of doodads and cinematics it is), then the cheering might be more subdued. I do think it'll be interesting to see if these all sell equally, or if something sells particularly poorly or spectacularly. Zerg has become such an overused, almost "generic" term now (I hear people use the term in FPSs, MMOs, other RTSs, everything), perhaps that's the campaign that will sell spectacularly and the others won't?

To be fair, Company of Heroes only had the one U.S. campaign in it (a long, sprawling one I never could finish), and then Opposing Fronts added British and UK campaigns -- maybe that's a comparison of sorts?

Anyway, with SC the only race I got remotely competent at was Terran and I imagine that's all I'll sign up for. I am assuming that whatever multiplayer updates get added through the expansions will get auto-updated via battle.net to people who only get the initial Terran release.
9967  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: CHUCK IS BACK! Chuck vs. The First Date Spoilers! on: October 12, 2008, 05:42:30 AM
I noticed that too when I was re-watching the episode via NBC's site.

Skip this if you'd rather the next couple episodes remain a suprise, but that Zach Levi fan site dug up some "NBC publicity feeds" that extensively preview the next two episodes (about 8 minutes footage apiece).

http://zachary-levi.com/2008/10/11/chuck-episodes-203-204-sneak-peeks/
9968  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: October 12, 2008, 01:47:20 AM
I wish I could say I've had a chance to test mine on a trip, but my publisher says they're not sending me to Houston this year (savings more because of the high cost of the conference, rather than the high cost of traveling there).

But I use mine regularly to pull up fan site databases for LOTRO -- about every other quest in the game is too vague to figure out where to go, so pulling up these sites on a netbook is a godsend.
9969  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTORO Volume 2: Mines of Moria (paid, full-box expansion) on: October 11, 2008, 10:30:17 PM
Turbine posted a lot of info on the in-game tokens and rewards, depending on where you pre-order from, and if you upgrade digitally or by box:

Explanation of Mines of Moria™ in-game tokens and rewards
http://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?&postid=2292744#post2292744
Quote
Each player that purchases the Mines of Moria™Pre-Order gets one in-game item token.
*If a player purchases the Complete Edition, they get two in-game item tokens.

*If they purchase the Collector’s Edition or participate in the Early Upgrade, they get three in-game item tokens.

It all adds together (so a player who Pre-Orders the Collector's Edition gets a total of 4 in-game item tokens).

Once Moria launches, these in-game item tokens will appear in characters' inventories as Ithildin Coins. Players will be able to take these coins to a vendor and choose any of 8 items (each costing 1 coin) when Moria launches on 11/18.

Players are free to stock up on multiples of the same item if they so choose (such as potions).

Pre-order: Anyone who Pre-Orders (including the Early Upgrade) also gets the Cloak of Sunset and the Moria Expeditionary title. If they pre-order from GameStop, they also get the Deep Miner’s Helm and the Seeker of Khazad-dum title (these are exclusive through GameStop).

All of these are live in the game, so a current player that applies a Pre-Order or Early Upgrade to their account will get these when they redeem their keys.

Early Upgrade: Players who upgrade through Turbine receive the Cloak of Durin’s Crown when Moria launches on 11/18. This is an exclusive only available to Early Upgrade customers.
The stuff they mention include a few nice potion defense sets, a couple housing decorations, a pocket item with a modest run speed buff, and a horn.
9970  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Starcraft 2: The Milking? on: October 11, 2008, 04:29:49 PM
I've still a little confusion because they alternately seem to refer to them as "stand alone campaigns" (meaning you don't need the initial release to play the 2nd one, I take it, for example) and then as "expansions" (which generally require the initial release). icon_confused I'm sure they'll clarify but if they're going to drop a bombshell like this, they oughta have a FAQ ready to go.

I'm hopeless at multiplayer in RTSs (Company of Heroes I could sometimes get by in, otherwise I'm a joke  icon_razz), so I'd probably only be interested in the Terran campaign.

My conspiracy theory is somewhere in the Blizz bean counters, they're spoiled by WoW's continous revenue stream and this is a way to spread SC2's revenue stream across a period of time (years?) without resorting to turning SC2 into a monthly fee game.
9971  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Sacred 2 Gone Gold on: October 11, 2008, 04:25:40 PM
A site called PC Games Hardware did some interesting visual comparisons of the demo on various systems, cards and graphics settings:

http://www.pcgameshardware.com/aid,661407/Reviews/Sacred_2_demo_review_CPU_/_VGA_benchmarks_screenshots/?page=1
9972  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: October 11, 2008, 02:56:56 PM
So, up in Misty Mountains the tokens you can find in loot and turn in for gifts seem to drop fast and furious. I finally got a fairly cool "short Ranger robe" cosmetic costume to drop (twice event). I really dig the look, esp. with an Elven quiver cosmetic.  icon_cool



Finally got a nasty (58-92) bow, the one at right, from one of the tougher quests in Tal Bruinen. It's just, I finally reached the high end of Woodworking, and I can't make a bow that's usable at 42 that can match this kind of thing. Note that the L50 guy's nice crafted bow left has an L47 requirement, but mine (quest reward) doesn't.

So, well, I may start finally selling some bows at AH but the hope I had of making bows for my own character seem pointless (when quests give substantially better stuff as rewards). In retrospect, I think I should've done whatever it is that lets you make custom traps cause those I'm sure I would always find a use for.


9973  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Starcraft 2: The Milking? on: October 11, 2008, 07:07:34 AM
I thought for sure it was an April Fool's Joke.  icon_razz Ha, ha, very funny, Blizzard.  disgust

TenTon seemed to indicate it was announced at Blizzcon, but all the Diablo 3 attention might well have drowned it out.
http://www.tentonhammer.com/node/46213

Long delays never stopped Blizzard before on any game or expansion, so it sounds a bit curious to me that they cite that as an excuse. Part of SC's charm was having 3 terrific campaigns in one game.

I think they're hoping everyone in South Korea (I'm part Korean and I know I have at least one cousin who's a gamer because I helped my Korean uncle buy Diablo and Starcraft here to take home, when he was visiting here about 10 years ago icon_smile) buys all 3 games. Then at that point it won't matter if they make a sale in the U.S. at all. icon_surprised

Given the U.S./world economic situation, it just doesn't make any sense - if they really are going to charge full price for each release.

Maybe they'll also ship Diablo II with half of the characters, and half a campaign, and have a built-in expansion there too. I sound sarcastic, but you know it's probably true.  icon_razz

Anyway, while I'm sure Blizz knows what they're doing, I can imagine even now there are 1,000 "don't release the campaigns as separate games, we're not made out of money!" online petitions being created, as we post here.  icon_razz

I am a little surprised - given all their WoW MMO experience - that they don't either create their own type of Steam network (they could just sell the campaigns 2 and 3 as downloads at lower prices/less overhead); or give SC2 a pseudo-MMO updater that allows them to add campaigns the way they add updates to WoW.
9974  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: City of Heroes Issue 13: Architect (mission creator; day jobs) on: October 11, 2008, 06:55:47 AM
One player uploaded a YouTube video to show how one particular shield (Talsorian, transparent) animates:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aa6DYiRRL2c

Again, this is "early, pre-production", subject to change and improvements, as they say.

9975  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: October 10, 2008, 05:36:22 PM
Cool, thanks.  icon_cool The drive kind of reminds me of my beloved RCA portable CD player that finally conked out on me last year after about 10 years of hard use.

My bosses are coming down on me about my long (by our standards, 1-hour) lunches so I skipped Best Buy. Maybe tonight or tomorrow I'll get to it.
9976  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: October 10, 2008, 01:07:45 PM
Cool, now you just need to burn something on it, and try out the LightScribe stuff so the disc says "Destructor" on it. ninja2

And maybe a photo of the drive next to something small, like a Big Mac box or something.  smirk
9977  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: City of Heroes Issue 13: Architect (mission creator; day jobs) on: October 10, 2008, 12:58:45 PM
They posted a dev diary on the new Day Jobs feature:
http://www.cityofheroes.com/feature_update_issue_13a.html
Quote
Day Jobs and Badges

The Day Job system allows players to log out from a specific location (like a hospital or vault) and when they return to play, after an extended log out period, they will gain a temporary power or some other benefit. All of the benefits granted from Day Jobs, other than badges and accolades (see below) are temporary or have a certain number of uses before they expire. However, each time a character logs out from the same area, the corresponding benefits are replenished. Most rewards take 10 days of logged out time to reach the maximum benefit.

When characters are logged out from a designated location (consecutively or non-consecutively) for a total of 30 days they will earn a badge associated with the corresponding Day Job. This will result in additional benefits. Once a badge is earned, the rate at which characters accumulate benefits, and even the potency of them increase!

Accolades


An Accolade is obtained by earning two Day Job badges that work in conjunction with one another. In other words, earning multiple badges unlock Accolades. These Accolades will grant an even more enhanced set of powers and benefits. Additional ‘charges’ can also be earned for your Day Job Accolade powers by logging off from either of the areas associated with the two badges that unlocked the Accolade.

On Patrol


In addition to all of the Day Jobs, every character is "On Patrol" after they log out of the game. When players log back into Paragon City or the Rogue Isles they will gain 1 bar of double experience (when defeating enemies) for every 24 hours they are logged out. A player can earn up to 10 bars of double experience this way. Double experience is shown as a blue portion of your experience bar. One thing to note is that if a player has any experience debt, the debt will be removed first before any double experience is applied.

If your character has a number of bars of double experience that exceeds the number of experience bars you need to level up, then this double experience will carry over to the next security/threat level.

Concept still seems a little bizarre to me -- as if it's encouraging you *not* to play the game.  icon_confused Or you can look at as encouraging you to play more alts to stay logged out long enough to earn the day job rewards. Of course, at some point you have to actually log back in the game to enjoy your spoils from... not playing.  saywhat

Anyway, all subject to change, testing and player feedback. People are already hyperventilating about it, sight unseen, as with everything in the MMO world. icon_razz
9978  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTORO Volume 2: Mines of Moria (paid, full-box expansion) on: October 10, 2008, 02:10:45 AM
Turbine's trying their best to answer questions and resolve numerous billing issues that are already cropping up (including people being able to do the digital upgrade in Texas and Washington state who shouldn't be able to), along with various upgrade problems, but I think I'm going to stay away until next week. I'll let other people play phone tag resolving billing issues and billing software bugs.  icon_neutral

The devs posted a photo of the production sample of the collector's edition map. It's nice, I don't know if it'll be any more useful than the Ultima Online map that I *still* have hanging by a pin on my computer room wall here.  icon_razz
http://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?&postid=2286965#post2286965
9979  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: October 09, 2008, 10:49:23 PM
Good to hear, glad ye like the case. icon_smile I think I'm going to try to pick the LG drive up at lunch tomorrow, but do let us know how it runs, if it overheats, if you need both USB cables just to read stuff.

For me, it's a nice opp to finally install my old (2003) Palm Desktop software and finally be able to fully synch my Zire 71. It won't work in Vista 64-bit aside from backing up the built-in programs via a klutzy USB-to-serial adapter.

And maybe some old turn-based games or something. icon_cool
9980  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTORO Volume 2: Mines of Moria (paid, full-box expansion) on: October 09, 2008, 10:42:38 PM
A Community rep tried to clarify the improvements/changes that everyone enjoys after Moria's release *even* if you don't buy Mines of Moria period:
http://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?&postid=2286544#post2286544
Quote
Let's break it down.

Key rings, Quest item storage (in the quest journal), Trait Sets, Crafting Guilds, the entire area of Eregion [Eregion is a huge new region south of Rivendell and far east of the Trollshaws and Tal Bruinen, and... oh crap I sound like an LOTRO quest description!-Bj icon_razz], Creeps autoleveling to 60, and Volume I Book 15 (the end of the SoA Epic story line) are all free content and game changes available to everyone.

Anything beyond Eregion (Moria, Volume II Epic Quest, et al), leveling to 60 (for freeps), new crafting tiers, 2 New classes (Rune-keeper and Warden), 2 additional character slots, New legendary Items, traits, Skills, and all the other amazing goodness we've created (whether we've told you about it yet or not ) is all exclusively for those who have purchased MoM.
9981  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTORO Volume 2: Mines of Moria (paid, full-box expansion) on: October 09, 2008, 08:56:53 PM
What's the CHOICE? You're killing us with the cliffhangar ending!  drool

One interesting thing is that you can't get the digital upgrade in the states of Texas or Washington. Turbine's current billing system apparently can't handle how they assess/bill taxes there for now:
http://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?&postid=2286068#post2286068

The main advantage of the digital download is you'll in theory be able to breeze onto Moria with only a relatively minor update on Moria's launch day. That is, you'll have downloaded everything needed for Mora before launch day, save for about the last 10% of the files necessary - if I'm reading Marketroid's posts correctly. Me I'm just more comfortable having a physical box, I know it makes no sense.
9982  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: City of Heroes Issue 13: Architect (mission creator; day jobs) on: October 09, 2008, 05:56:11 PM
With some grudging permissions from the devs (because they left the shields in place on the publicly available Training Room servers, they seem to say), players have posted some images of the new shields that'll debut in this update with the shield oriented power sets. These are from the character creator screens.

Shield Screenshots (and costume pieces) 

http://boards.cityofheroes.com/showflat.php?Cat=0&Number=12164777&page=0&fpart=1&vc=1

Quite a huge variety, there's something that would go with just about any costume theme you can imagine. It's not finalized, and I imagine they are still doing final texturing and details on a lot of the right now blander looking metal shields.
9983  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTORO Volume 2: Mines of Moria (paid, full-box expansion) on: October 09, 2008, 05:43:35 PM
They've started an official Q&A thread since the more information they give out, the more questions players have.  icon_smile

Reload this Page  Official Mines of Moria Pre-order Questions and Answers thread
http://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?&postid=2285119#post2285119
Quote
What’s the difference between the Pre-order Program and the Early Upgrade Program?

The Early Upgrade Program allows most existing subscribers and free trial players to digitally upgrade their accounts to Mines of Moria through the game’s launcher or at https://myaccount.turbine.com effective as of the Mines of Moria launch.

The Pre-order Program allows new players and existing subscribers to create or prepare their account for a future purchase of the physical game at retail (such as The Lord of the Rings Online: Mines of Moria Complete Edition or The Lord of the Rings Online: Mines of Moria Collector’s Edition).

I'm not going to try to understand it all. I feel like they need to make a flow chart or something.  icon_confused icon_razz

I *know* if you buy either of the "physical" retail packages (I might be inclined to pre-order the "complete" version just to save download time if I ever need to re-install), it includes 30 free days. I'm not clear on if you receive 30 free days if getting the digital Moria upgrade alone (though I know it too brings back the $199.99 lifetime and $9.99 monthly-with-multimonth-plans option).

Don't take that as gospel - I just haven't seen the 30 free days mentioned for the digital upgrade to this point. Maybe it's mentioned somewhere else.
9984  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTORO Volume 2: Mines of Moria (paid, full-box expansion) on: October 09, 2008, 03:32:52 PM
Nov. 18 announced as the release date for both North America and Europe:
http://www.lotro.com/news/pressreleases/226-turbine-unveils-launch-date-pre-order-and-early-upgrade-programs-for-the-lord-of-the-rings-online-mines-of-moria-

Pretty cool - they are bringing back both the $199.99 lifetime option, and the $9.99 monthly (IF choosing a multi-month subscription).  icon_smile

Note below that while they *look* the same, digital pre-orders get a couple of more tokens for unique, in-game items.

Quote
MINES OF MORIA RETAIL PRE-ORDER [non-digital] PROGRAM* DETAILS
Players who pre-order Mines of Moria and purchase The Lord of the Rings Online: Mines of Moria Complete Edition or Collector’s Edition qualify for the following special pre-order benefits:

Pre-order Pricing

    * Only $9.99 per month when choosing a multi-month subscription plan!

OR

    * Just $199 for a Lifetime Membership!

Pre-order In-game items

    * The Cloak of Sunset, a unique cloak emblazoned with an image of the Hollin Gate.
    * An exclusive in-game Moria character title - “Moria Expeditionary”.
    * 1 in-game token, which allows players to choose 1 of 8 unique in-game items after launch

Bonus Music CD -- Limited edition of the special extended Shadows of Angmar™ Soundtrack with a special bonus track from Mines of Moria.

This exciting Pre-order Program offer is available for a limited time from participating retailers until November 18, 2008 when The Lord of the Rings Online: Mines of Moria commercially launches in North America.   For more information, please visit www.lotro.com/moria.

MINES OF MORIA DIGITAL EARLY UPGRADE PROGRAM** DETAILS
Current and former players of The Lord of The Rings Online who purchase an early digital upgrade to Mines of Moria qualify for the following special early upgrade benefits:

Early Upgrade Pricing

    * Only $9.99 per month when choosing a multi-month subscription plan!

OR

    * Just $199 for a Lifetime Membership!

Early Upgrade In-game items

    * The Cloak of Sunset, a unique cloak emblazoned with an image of the Hollin Gate which will be available to players upon upgrading
    * An exclusive in-game Moria character title - “Moria Expeditionary” which will be available to players upon upgrading
    * 3 in-game tokens, which allows players to choose 3 of 8 unique in-game items after Mines of Moria launches

This exciting Early Upgrade Program offer is available for a limited time until November 18, 2008 when The Lord of the Rings Online: Mines of Moria commercially launches in North America.  For more information, please visit www.lotro.com/moria.
9985  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: October 09, 2008, 03:21:18 PM
I got to do that "Nerd-gasm" inducing quest in Tal Bruinen last night. It was a real treat, in fact it was totally...
Spoiler for Hiden:
precious... icon_biggrin

I dunno, I have very inconsistent luck finding teammates but it is really as group-encouraging MMO as there is. But a lot of people get very attached to their higher level characters (I've got 41 and 48 characters now and don't play much else) and I think that contributes to certain lower level ranges often not having many people to team with.

I'm in a good-size kinship but they're almost all from Australia so we don't team much except on weekends. It is invaluable in terms of having people you can ask to craft items for you, or to ask questions of. If I was starting over though I'd probably try to somehow find an East Coast kinship so at least I would know we'd all generally be on around the same time.

And lot of us are just bashful. I'm not really comfortable basically spamming chat channels to try to get a group quest done, although sometimes I will. Sometimes I'll resort to cheesy humor and sometimes I'll get some interest just by being a little different (it doesn't always work though).

I don't know how Moria's going to affect things. I'm sure it'll bring a lot of players back but whether it brings back mostly people who had L50 characters and were out of things to do, or people who want to come back and restart (which would help fill up the 1-20 areas and make it easier to team up in those ranges), who can say. Only the Watcher knows...
9986  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an MSI Wind? on: October 09, 2008, 03:00:43 PM
Something called Fudzilla has a lot of shots of the Wind U120. It isn't much changed on the outside, aside from trying to be a little more sharper-edged, and business-like, they seem to indicate:

MSI's new Wind U120 pixellized
http://www.fudzilla.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=9855&Itemid=1
9987  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: October 09, 2008, 02:56:22 PM
AA1 is seeing some use as a testbed for WiMax testing. Engadget has a roundup:

XOHM roundup: WiMAX-enabled Aspire One, speed testing
http://www.engadget.com/2008/10/09/xohm-roundup-wimax-enabled-aspire-one-speed-testing/

More specific to AA1 at:
Hands-on with Mobile WiMAX Acer Aspire one (Laptop Magazine's blog)
http://blog.laptopmag.com/hands-on-with-mobile-wimax-acer-aspire-one
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I just finished complaining in a previous post about the dearth of WiMax netbooks here at the XOHM event in Baltimore. Then I was invited by Ben Wolff, the CEO of Clearwire, to take a ride in an Intel-pimped mini van to chat about the technology and test it out. And lo and behold there was an Acer Aspire one waiting for me–with Mobile WiMax baked in. ...

We’re looking into whether this Aspire one was simply a demo unit or if the company is actually bringing a Mobile WiMax-enabled netbook to market. So far the company has only announced two notebooks with an integrated Intel WiMAX/Wi-Fi Link 5050 Series adapter, the 14-inch Aspire 4930-6862 and the 16-inch Aspire 6930-6771.
9988  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: October 09, 2008, 01:10:31 PM
A Phillipines site tested the 6-cell battery Aspire One A150X (basically, it's the XP model with a 6-cell battery):
http://blogs.inquirer.net/techaddicts/2008/10/08/acer-aspire-one-redux/
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Most of the Atom-based notebooks reviewed before have ho-hum performance, operating for just about two hours before dying out. The 6-cell battery allowed the Aspire One A150X to run for a phenomenal 3 hours at full charge with the Wifi connections running and a video playing on a loop.
Not exactly the twice-the-battery life people were hoping for from a 6-cell but I guess that's a worst-case usage scenario.
9989  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: CHUCK IS BACK! Chuck vs. The First Date Spoilers! on: October 09, 2008, 02:20:03 AM
Because my life is soooo empty, I typed up all the entries on the "Wheel of Misfortune" in Episode 2. Like so...
Quote
Wheel of Misfortune
-You're Fired [in red]
-The Hole
-The Cage
-Floor Inventory
-Storeroom Inventory
-Display Duty
-Customer Service
-7 p.m. Breakroom Clean Up
-Check Out
-Parking Lot Cart Duty
-Dust Big Mike's Office
-Diaper Station Duty
-Bathroom Cleanup
icon_razz
9990  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTORO Volume 2: Mines of Moria (paid, full-box expansion) on: October 08, 2008, 10:23:58 PM
Some cool news for people constantly running out of inventory space - Moria will change the handling of quest items and "key rings" to try to slim down the personal inventory mess.

Some info here:
http://forums.lotro.com/showpost.php?p=2282704&postcount=262

Basically, most quest items will go into the quest book and no longer eat up inventory space (unless they require you use or interact with them in some way).
9991  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: CHUCK IS BACK! Chuck vs. The First Date Spoilers! on: October 08, 2008, 08:57:03 PM
I was looking at the prime-time skeds over at TVguide.com (at the bottom of the home page is a useful TV sked):
http://www.tvguide.com/

The Blackjack scheme is to put that miserable Knight Rider remake out of its misery and move Chuck there. Then it's going against Bones on Fox (I like Bones, but it's no ratings juggernaut), the fading Pushing Daisies on ABC and sitcoms New Adventures of Old Christine and the poorly reviewed Gary Unmarried on CBS.

It's obvious being a lead-in to Heroes isn't helping Chuck's ratings (or Heroes for that matter), so I don't know if leading it into Biggest Loser: Families  icon_confused would hurt it any more then leaving it to get mauled by Dancing With the Stars week after week in terms of "traditional" viewership ratings. Or heck, move Chuck and Heroes to Wednesday, and see if Knight Rider/Biggest Loser is better counter-programming to the Dancing juggernaut.

Of course there is something to be said to not jerking a show around on the schedule back and forth (something NBC keeps doing with Friday Night Lights but it still gets so-so ratings). Just my 2 cents - not that NBC's gonna listen to me. If only I were a Suit at NBC. I'd whip 'em into shape. drillsergeant  icon_razz
9992  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: October 08, 2008, 08:36:00 PM
Foiled again!  icon_razz

After reading the manual at the LG site... I guess it says in some cases if the laptop is underpowered, you then use two cables to connect/power this. One is a USB power cable (with its own special jack on the drive), and then the other is a USB 2.0 data connection cable. It includes those two, but doesn't include the optional AC adapter, fwiw. So I'll be interested to see if my AA1 has enough juice that I don't have to do that.

Also, I guess if I wanted to conserve my AA1's wimpy battery power, I could actually plug the USB power cord into my desktop PC. Then, I would probably trip over the cords and accidentally strangle myself  retard.
9993  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Bethesda sucks and they and anyone who likes them are going to hell (Fallout 3) on: October 08, 2008, 07:59:30 PM
Bethesda has an interesting ad campaign going on here in the D.C. area on the Metro subway:

Fallout 3 Hits Metro Center
http://voices.washingtonpost.com/posttech/2008/10/fallout_3_hits_metro_center.html
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Local game studio Bethesda Softworks has blanketed the advertising space in downtown's Metro Center Metrorail station with some dark and kinda disturbing images of DC landmarks, such as a bombed-out-looking Capitol building and Washington Monument, lifted from its upcoming game title Fallout 3.
9994  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Vista (64-bit) freezing at startup on: October 08, 2008, 07:40:45 PM

Quote from: Destructor on October 08, 2008, 07:24:50 PM

Frankly, I run without any protections period.
Yeesh, I hope you don't do that in all aspects of your life!  unibrow
9995  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Vista (64-bit) freezing at startup on: October 08, 2008, 07:02:40 PM
So, I sort of spoke too soon. Sporadically, it has still been gagging on NOD32.

Since CounterSpy never finds any spyware of note anyway, I finally just disabled it from starting up yesterday and I also disabled Windows Defender from starting up. Oddly, CounterSpy still loaded after I rebooted, once, but not thereafter. Anyway, with CounterSpy no longer starting up, the PC boots up much faster and quicker to the desktop with no "gagging" problems. Even LOTRO seemed to run faster (that might've just been the servers clearing out after the Oct. 2-6 event ended though).

So, I'll probably do a little more experimenting to see if maybe Windows Defender was the culprit.

9996  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: CHUCK IS BACK! Chuck vs. The First Date Spoilers! on: October 08, 2008, 06:16:15 PM
Episode 2, Chuck vs. The Seduction is finally up on NBC's site as well:
http://www.nbc.com/Chuck/video/episodes/#vid=731021

So, whether you watch it there or Hulu, lets give Chuck some "eyeball views" at least.  thumbsup
9997  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: October 08, 2008, 06:05:59 PM
Hey I actually saw an elderly lady using a display model (Best Buy locks them in these steel cage contraptions) today. She was asking a BB employee a lot of questions about it. I was tempted to chime in, "Hey, I have one of those, do you have any questions about it?" but I decided to stay out of it. Heck if I got started babbling, they might've hired me for the ultra-portables section.  icon_razz

If I'd had my AA1 in my car, I might've offered to bring it in.  icon_smile I know BB is waging war against shoplifters but I really think the cord-lock (as Micro Center does with all of netbooks/ultra-portables) is the way to go on things in this category so people can get an idea of the weight, pivot the screen angle etc.

The retailers didn't ask me of course - but I think even just a rolling video of people using an AA1 or other netbook in a coffee shop, on a plane, at a lecture, anything to show good opportunities to use it, would be better marketing than a locked up demo model in a lonely corner of a store. The category deserves some spiffiness and "bling" imho.  icon_cool
9998  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: WoW joins the dustbin... on: October 08, 2008, 05:49:34 PM
Thanks for the WWII Online insights. I do realize it was pretty much a disaster at launch (I seem to recall it and Anarchy Online got "Coasters of the Month" awards from CGW way back when, for their launches) and then it seemed to gradually become a modestly successful niche MMO. I knew it was still up and running - just don't hear much about it anymore.

I'm content in my return to LOTRO at the moment and anxious for the Moria expansion. However, Warhammer is definitely on my radar screen, and I'd like to at least try a trial version of it some day if that's offered. I just don't think I'm PVP'y enough of a person to truly get into it. Planetside was about the only pseudo PVP-MMO that really hooked me (I guess some would call it more of an MMO FPS), and only for about 6 months at that.
9999  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: October 08, 2008, 05:37:20 PM
Oh, I forgot to mention -- Best Buy online is back-ordered.  icon_surprised

I'll probably pick one up Friday at lunch.
10000  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: October 08, 2008, 05:24:25 PM
Hey I think my slim external DVD drive ship has come in for my AA1 (though it would probably be a good partner to anything in this category so I put it here):

Slim External Super Multi DVD Rewriter
http://us.lge.com/products/model/detail/computer%20products_optical%20drives_optical%20drives_GP08LU10.jhtml
And you can even make your own SecureRom discs and tick off all the gamers in your life!!!  icon_twisted icon_razz

Best Buy has a $35-off sale on it, at $74.99. I saw lots of them in stock today, but figured I should do a little online research before buying it:
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=8990648&st=LG+8X+Slim+Portable&type=product&id=1218007087415

It's USB bus-powered (though it has an optional AC adapter jack), very tiny and light (13 oz.). The box was so tiny on the shelf. It's even specifically Vista 64-bit compatible, so I guess I could use it for home use in an emergency too.
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