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15441  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / WinXP Sucks. on: August 15, 2004, 01:51:38 PM
Quote from: "Tebunker"
The key to keeping that machine running fresh and new, is disabling the backup logging program that's native to Xp and running in new Dell systems. You can disable that in System Properties off of " My Computer". That alone will free up some memory.

You mean System Restore? That's one feature I'll never turn off, as it's saved my ass before in a 'last resort' situation. It's one of the featured 'features' of WinXP that actually works.

If you mean something else, I can't figure out what it is offhand.

And as far as Firefox goes - there are only a few sites (our backend database being one of them as Ron pointed out) in which it doesn't work. That and the occasional text/graphic allignment glitch. Other than that, it works perfectly.

But after watching somebody's PC get torn up in less than 15 seconds from all the native vunerabilities in IE (only saved by a healthy application of SpyBot, Adaware, and WinXP's System Restore), I've never looked at IE as a viable browser again.
15442  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / WinXP Sucks. on: August 14, 2004, 10:39:02 PM
Quote from: "Thin_J"
*Edit again: I discovered that internet security needs to be tweaked a bit and enabled in some ways before it really does much. Seems to have fixed most of my problems. Now the only thing adaware brings up is cookies.. which is odd because I have them disabled. I would think IE would be refusing all of them wouldn't it?

In my mind, Internet Explorer IS spyware in itself. On a fresh PC, after visiting, I go visit and download the latest and greatest Firefox browser. IE (at least before the Service Pack 2 upgrade) is SO filled with holes, pop-ups, security errors, you name it, that you're risking your general sanity by just using it.

Thankfully Service Pack 2 fixes a great many of those issues, but it's only available to the Corporate users as of right now. Those of you who have the Home or Professional editions will have to wait just a bit longer.
15443  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: WinXP Sucks. on: August 14, 2004, 07:03:25 PM
Quote from: "Thin_J"
I download and run Ad-Aware.. it finds 347 objects, but every time actually tell ad-aware to start a search, it brings up an error telling me windows is restarting in 60 seconds. That gives the program enough time to finish the scan, but not enough for me to do anything about it.

You know what's sad? That 'error' message of WinXP shutting down in 60 seconds was solved at least 6 months ago by a Windows patch.

Which means that Dell hasn't installed a single 'critical vunerability' patch from yet. Needless to say, that's your next stop. smile
15444  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Pinball Nostalgia, and a look at what's next... on: August 13, 2004, 11:52:53 PM
Personally, I was much more of a fan of the real-life pinball tables than any 'PC made' ones. Although I do have to admit that the Epic Pinball tabkes were an absolute blast to play.
15445  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Doom 3 Xbox or PC? on: August 09, 2004, 07:32:00 PM
So, anybody seen some of the light mods out there? Some of these are just wrong:

Look closely, and you'll see not only Hello Kitty, but the Batman logo, and even the Thundercats symbol. biggrin

This is why I get the PC version of games when available.
15446  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Media Biased Against Gamers? on: August 09, 2004, 02:46:40 PM
Ripped straight from our front page:

First we had the Manhunt issue from last week, blaming a death upon a video game (which turned out to be completely false), and now we have this report from CNN, with an article title of this:

Sheriff: 4 charged in Florida killings over Xbox

Looking further, in actually, the killings might've been caused over somebody stealing his clothes AND his Xbox. The article title says nothing about that though. Why? In my opinion, it's because it doesn't make as 'catchy' of a headline.

Your thoughts on this? Does the media truly hate us? Or is it all just for the bottom dollar?
15447  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / AARRGGHH!!! Why Midway?!? Why? on: August 08, 2004, 10:46:01 PM
Quote from: "EngineNo9"
Man, now you've planted the seed.  I might just have to Ebay myself a Lynx and this game if I can find them reasonably priced.

It's a good port, but I wouldn't go that far just to get it. However, there are lots of good games for the Lynx worth getting... biggrin
Reminds me - I'm like 3 games short of the entire collection of games for the system thanks to eBay. I really should finish it...
15448  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines on: August 07, 2004, 04:17:47 PM
Quote from: "Knightshade Dragon"
That is correct.  SO, if Vampire ships on Halloween, you can do some quick logic and figure out that we will have HL2 soon.

HL2 is just gonna release the same day they said it would last year.

Just this year, and not last. smile
15449  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / AARRGGHH!!! Why Midway?!? Why? on: August 05, 2004, 03:16:49 PM
Quote from: "EngineNo9"
Son of a bitch!  I was totally looking forward to STUN Runner!

Go pick it up on the Atari Lynx. Best home port of this game. biggrin
15450  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / 30 seconds, and re-enacted by bunnies on: August 02, 2004, 05:28:48 PM
Now that's a classic. And so totally wrong.
15451  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / FF series question on: August 01, 2004, 11:44:06 PM
Quote from: "Rage"
Now, just since I am rambling, let me throw in some FFIX thoughts. I started this one a few months ago, and playing sporadically got about 10 hours into it, and I must say, I was exceedingly impressed by what I played. My only problem is the jagged graphics.

FF7 though, and I know this is blasphemy, I can't stand. Slow, boring, pedantic, overwrought, and man do the graphics not work for me smile

Personally, I had a PS2 not too long after I bought FF9, so I played it with the enhanced loading and graphic options that the PS2 had. Made a world of difference. That, the Spyro series, and Vagrant Story were drastically improved by the enhanced PS1 options on the PS2.

It's funny - there are two camps when it comes to the Final Fantasy series. If you loved 4 and 6 (and one and five if you played them), you loved 9 and didn't like 7, 8, and 10. If you liked 7 (and think it's the next best thing to sliced cheese), you loved 8 and 10 (and the fan-service 10-2), but hated 9.

As far as FF7 goes... I liked it when it came out, but it was an overblown title by all the graphic lovers of the time. As I said before - it was the commercials that made it such a success. You couldn't watch an hour show without seeing a commercial for it. FF8 was a joke, especially when you had to draw every single spell you wanted, in addition to push buttons rapidly to make your summons that much more powerful (which was nearly a requirement).

As EddieA said though, the people who grew up with FF4 and 6 love the older games. If your first RPG was FF7, you loved the newer titles. Go figure.
15452  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / FF series question on: August 01, 2004, 02:03:46 PM
Quote from: "Tebunker"
It's partly nostalgia, but for a lot of us FFX wasn't as great as you seem to remember it. I thought the characters were weak and fairly thin at best. I never felt connected to the characters or the world like I did when I played FF3/6 back then. I also felt that the story was much more interesting in 6 as well. So I never was really impressed by what went on in X, just thought that it was cool.

The way I see it, 6 set the bar for future FF games, and even when it comes to the very solid X, it really only feels like a meager extension of what was established. Sure sure, the technology is better so the graphics are pretty, but who really plays RPGS for graphics? It's the characters and story that wasn't really advanced past the rut that some fans felt Square had fallen into.

I have to agree with Tebunker - the general story was better back in the SNES era, and you simply cared for the characters more. In FF7, FF8 (8 especially), and FF10, I just couldn't care for the people I was guiding around the world.

Square has always focused upon the graphics from FF7 on up. Heck - remember the four different FF7 commercials? 100% CGI shown the ENTIRE time. Sure, FF7 was also known for bringing RPGs into the mainstream here in the US, but I think it was because many, many, people were fooled into thinking that the game truly looked as good as the commercials showed.

In FF9, I just cared for what happened to the cast and crew more than the others. Which is why I mentioned it in my Tales post that started this whole post. Same with 4 and 6 (or 2 and 3, depending on the numbering system you use).

Square needs to realize that graphics are not the most important thing in an RPG. It's the story the developers are trying to present, as well as the characters. If you don't fall in love with who you're playing as, it'll be really hard to follow along that character(s) life for the next 40-50 hours.
15453  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Review Discussion: Tales of Symphonia on: July 31, 2004, 10:52:00 PM
Quote from: "Tebunker"
Oh yeah forgot one thing, I didn't see it mentioned, but I don't know if Tim knows that you can do a lot of stuff out of order in the game. The gameworld is designed so that you can get around certain things, like taking the boat ride. This effects all sorts of interactions and what have you. You can also tackle temples in different orders, can get summons at different times giving them different difficulties. I could go on, but it should be noted that the game can play very different each play through.

Oh, I know about doing things out of 'order'. I stumbled upon that boat ride ages before I actually had to go there, and noticed that the things that my crew said were a bit 'different' than what I expected them to say because of it.

Unfortunately, when writing a review, there's a limit as to how much you can put in before it becomes a book to read. I'm the most guilty of them all in this aspect, as my reviews (in my opinion anyway) tend to be some of the longest out of the rest of the staff.

As far as the overworld goes - there's times where it looks decent (once you get the 'travel' ability for example), and there's times where it looks like crap (when you blow up some of the dungeons you visit). Combine that with the giant black blobs you encounter, and it looks really poor compared to how good the rest of the game looks. That's pretty much the point I was trying to make there.

Thanks for the comments though. Everything I look at after I do a review helps when I write the next one down the line.
15454  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Doom 3 Xbox or PC? on: July 31, 2004, 02:36:09 PM
Quote from: "AgtFox"
Supposedly Best Buy has broken street date on this and it should be out on the shelves no later than Sunday (many already have it on the shelf).

I heard about this. Now I'll have to swing on by my local BB, instead of waiting 2 more days for my local EB. biggrin

Want to see the official Doom III trailer? File Rush has it via this link - no registration required.
15455  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Review Discussion: Tales of Symphonia on: July 31, 2004, 02:34:17 PM
Quote from: "Foxmerc"
I'll take a Riddick or Halo anyday, and the good RPGs like Wizardry 8 or FFX. At least Tidus had the ability to stop being annoying once in a while.

Tidus was always annoying in my mind. smile

FFX, bah. Square lost their imagination and simple 'awe' of playing a FF game at number 6, personally. They regained some things in my eyes with FF9, but other than that, I haven't been impressed at all with a Final Fantasy title in ages.

But, as the saying goes - to each their own.

Balshazaar - I never touched Multiplayer (short of figuring out a few things in the other ToS post), so obviously I never noticed this. Too bad to hear actually. The camera works so well in single player - always dynamic, focusing on what's important. What you can't see is made up by your teammates telling you what you're missing.

Too bad it falls apart like that in multi.
15456  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Review Discussion: Tales of Symphonia on: July 31, 2004, 03:27:27 AM
Well, I finally got the time needed to sit down and enjoy the heck out of Tales of Symphonia for the Gamecube. And, as indicated above, I've writted a review for this outstanding game, which you can read by clicking this link.

Anybody else playing this game? What are your thoughts on this title and my review?
15457  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / The official Nintendo DS design, link inside on: July 29, 2004, 10:31:24 PM
I do have to say - I'm impressed by the little thing. Now it looks like a cool looking portable console.

And hey - it has four face buttons. Time for the SNES ports! biggrin
15458  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / What is in your CD (mp3) player right now? on: July 29, 2004, 03:05:25 PM
Sirius Radio - All music all the time. Never any commercials, ever.
15459  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Should I pick up Kingdom Hearts? on: July 27, 2004, 10:57:38 PM
Quote from: "Dreamshadow"
I think he meant Tales of Symphonia...Tales of Destiny was an earlier PS1 title in the Namco RPG line.


I'm going away now to get some sleep.
15460  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Should I pick up Kingdom Hearts? on: July 27, 2004, 05:53:20 PM
Tales of Destiny, my friend. Pick that one up instead and stay away from the Disney world. smile

On a more serious note though, I found that Kingdom Hearts was a pretty good game. The voice acting was great, but the game as a whole did get boring about halfway through. The constant fighting just didn't grab on to me.

Tales of Destiny though has battles that tends to last around 15 seconds, tops (short of boss fights). And it's extremely fast-paced and filled with energy.

That, and it's the best RPG on the Gamecube, hands down. Sure, there's only like 4 RPGs on the console, but that's not my point.
15461  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Dungeons and Dragons: Heroes was seriously underrated on: July 26, 2004, 08:19:03 PM
Quote from: "DragonFyre"
I was bored of Heroes long before it finished.

Don't even touch Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel then. That was one of those games I had to force myself to finish for review after about the 5 hour mark.

Norrath is by far the best of the hack-and-slash games available out there in my opinion.
15462  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Episode III: REVENGE OF THE SITH on: July 25, 2004, 06:18:28 PM
The only reason I'm going to this movie is because I've seen (and wasted my time in) the first two films of this 'trilogy'. Thank you, Lucas, for screwing up what was once a great license and name.

Bring back Sam and Max!  biggrin
15463  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / 60 Minute Shakedown: Sudeki on: July 23, 2004, 01:21:07 PM
Yes, I'm enjoying Tales a ton more than Sudeki. The battles are even faster, there's next to no load time, the voices are actually good, and it's a longer game (with a far more interesting story, based on reviews).
15464  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Doom 3 Benchmarks on: July 23, 2004, 03:39:21 AM
The general conception is that the ATI cards are better at Direct 3D games, while the NVidia ones are better at Open GL. And the only company that tends to produce Open GL only titles are ID Software...

Even now, this seems to hold true. Go figure.
15465  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / So what the heck is Growlanser? on: July 23, 2004, 03:37:12 AM
You know, ever thought of going directly to the source to see what it is? biggrin

Even according to them, the game is due out in September. Personally, I know I'll be buying the game, even if I don't get much of a chance to play it. Working Designs is that good of a company.

That, and their games tend to go for full price (if not more so) on eBay for years after their release... *looks over at the Lunar titles on both the PS1 and Sega CD*
15466  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / XB Live Content for those of us without Live? on: July 22, 2004, 05:07:26 PM
Doesn't the Official Xbox Magazine occasionally have new Live content on their discs? Or am I thinking of something completely different?
15467  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / 60 Minute Shakedown: Sudeki on: July 22, 2004, 01:42:27 PM
After a very long wait, another RPG has appeared on the Xbox market - Sudeki. Some have said that this is little more than a hold-over title until the greats like Fable and KotOR:II come out. Is it? Well, here's my 60 minute (and just a bit more) impressions:

To be very blunt, this is the best part of the game by far. The world is vibrant, colorful, filled with polygons, and detailed. People run around the towns, and they all seem to be different from one another. No attack of the clones here.

The character models are large and expressive, and are detailed enough to zoom in for closeups during the 'talking heads' sequences and still look quite good. Mouths will move in pretty close sync with the speech as well.

During combat, you'll face the clones (like in most all RPGs). Special effects are used in abundance with every hit, and when you kill your opponents, they explode into a pool of blood and body parts. I thought I was playing a Mortal Kombat game after my first opponent fell to my blade.

The game opens with a decent looking CGI movie, but it looked like it was a slightly enhanced in-game engine movie instead of a CGI masterpiece like Namco or Square.

The frame-rate seems to be locked at either 30 or 60fps (can't really tell yet), and while I've seen a few bits of slowdown already, I don't know if it's a problem yet. The game also supports Progressive Scan natively.

Whoo boy. First off, the music is pretty standard RPG fare from my listening in the first hour. I didn't find any songs that stood out, but I didn't find any that were grating to the ear either.

What I did find that wanted me to mute the game was the voices. To use the old PC terms, this game is a full talky, which means that every single line of text in the entire game is spoken (with a scrolling text box at the bottom if you mute your TV). This is a very uncommon thing in an RPG. In fact, I can't think of a RPG in recent memory that did this.

However, there is a reason why you don't see this - the lack of quality voice actors. You know that Rare (now owned by Microsoft) uses voice actors drawn from their pool of employees, right? Sudeki does the exact same thing, but unlike Rare (where the voice actors tend to be actually good), these voices, well, suck.

I immediately hated the voice given to one of your female party members (and I haven't even gotten her in my party yet), and the voices of the other three in your crew (of which I also haven't gotten) aren't any better.  Hopefully things will improve, but I honestly doubt they will.

Like Tales of Destiny on the Gamecube, Sudeki is best described as an Action/RPG. All combats will take place on the world map you run around in, with nary a load time short of enemies 'beaming' in. Yes, they actually teleport in all around you.

Combat is a twitch-fest, but with some stragety. The two melee fighters (of which I've only gotten the 'hero') are capable of 3 hit combos right off the start, which are governed by a small box in the corner of the screen. Hit the next button while the box is glowing, and you continue the combo. Unfortunately I've seen exactly two good combos, both of which allow you to extend that 3 hitter into a 6 one, also striking everything in your general area in the process. Hopefully I won't use that move over and over the entire game, but it honestly looks like I will.

You also have a slew of special skills (and magic, eventually) to choose from. When you want to use one of your powers (or go into your inventory to drag out a healing item), the game slows down dramatically, ala The Matrix. It doesn't give you unlimited time to think, but it's slow enough that you have plenty of time to choose what you want without feeling rushed.

As far as combat goes in general though, I really don't like it. Tales of Destiny for the Gamecube seemed to give you far more control of battle right off the bat. It also is a ton more fun, and even faster-paced than this game.

Sudeki is a pretty looking game, with a very poor set of voice actors, and a combat engine that while looks entertaining, I don't know if it'll keep my interest during the course of the game. Will things improve as I move forward? I sure as heck hope so. The first hour was not that all impressive.
15468  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Sudeki is Gold on: July 22, 2004, 06:40:16 AM
Oh my God, is this a poor game after the first hour of play... Wowzers. Expect a 60-minute Shakedown as soon as I get a bit of sleep. Trying to write at 11:30PM isn't exactly the best of ideas.

And it would've been up eariler, if UPS didn't misplace my local EB's shipment of this game...
15469  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Why Dwarves Can't Dance (a WoW movie) on: July 21, 2004, 10:44:39 PM
No, I did not make this, nor am I related to this in any way, shape, or form.

But click this link anyway for all the crazy dance 'moves' in WoW:

Note - not exactly work safe due to the excessive use of near naked Night Elves and Humans shaking their asses like it was 1999. biggrin
15470  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Console Gold Shirts / Hats? (Not CafePress) on: July 21, 2004, 10:29:18 PM
As long as the shirt itself was white, and not black (as we Arizonians would simply die out there), I do believe I'd be interested.

But I'm with Tebunker - a small logo on the front pocket, full sized thing on the back.
15471  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / co-op gaming on: July 20, 2004, 04:33:16 PM
Quote from: "Balshazaar"
Can't Battlefield 1942 be played Co-op?

The single player 'AI' is pathethically dumb, and that's putting it nicely. Avoid that game at all costs on the PC if you're looking for co-op.
15472  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Vaseline Hotel on: July 19, 2004, 07:31:56 PM
Go visit everyone's favorite and type in the following and punch the 'I'm Feeling Lucky' button:

vaseline hotel

If for some reason that doesn't work, go visit this direct link:

Warning: Not exactly fully work safe due to one word inside. However, it is, well, disturbing. Thoughts?  biggrin
15473  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Scary games... on: July 19, 2004, 07:13:06 PM
For the record, System Shock 2 was the only game I've ever played that fully scared the bajezzers out of me. And it did it pretty much the entire game.

Now, I've never played any of the Fatal Frame games. I've seen them played from a friend of mine, and it seemed spooky enough, but I've never sat down and actually played it.

I might have to pick it up. Just gotta find the time to play it. frown

Edit - Mitch, what is wrong with you? SS2 is one of the best games of all time just because of how scary of a title it is. You must not have any fear or something.
15474  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy... on: July 19, 2004, 04:55:10 PM
Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaerin waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a total mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm.Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

I dig this one up out of my Trillian logs and thought it would make an interesting way to start off another week. Neat, huh?
15475  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / co-op gaming on: July 19, 2004, 03:05:25 PM
Quote from: "The Rocketman"
What would be the best one out of all these titles? I haven't got any of the games mentioned, but my "main cooperative games-friend" has recently fallen in love with diablo2, so he'd like these games too I guess...

Champions of Norrath out of all of them. And I've played them all (BG:DA 1&2, Fallout, CoN). Solo, unfortunately, but I've played them all.
15476  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / 60 minute Shakedown Premiere: Tales of Symphonia on: July 18, 2004, 05:44:51 PM
Quote from: "Balshazaar"
I guess I don't know how to do this.  I've used the lens, but all I see is the amount of HP that the character has.  How do you see what their weakness is?

I've lensed people as well, and I've never seen a weakness sitting in the little window that pops up showing their HP/MP.

Then again, maybe I've not lensed somebody who's ever had a magical weakness, as I only use it on bosses...

I know the game pauses when you hold down the R button to change targets. Tried that? Or can you access the Monster Book (whatever they call it) during fights? I know that shows weaknesses for sure.

I'm asking all these questions, because as usual, I'm at work.
15477  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / co-op gaming on: July 18, 2004, 02:50:51 PM
Most definitely get Champions of Norrath - I've played them all, and that one is the best out of the bunch. Stay away from Fallout (will put you to sleep), and D&D:H isn't that good IMHO.
15478  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Doom 3 Xbox or PC? on: July 17, 2004, 05:17:23 PM
As long as ATI gets off their buts and ships their Radeon x800 XT to stores in quanities, I'll be all set to play the PC version in two weeks. My 9700 Pro is getting old. smile

15479  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / 60 minute Shakedown Premiere: Tales of Symphonia on: July 16, 2004, 06:48:50 PM
Quote from: "Balshazaar"
I'll give that a shot.  The game looks great, but Namco loses huge points for not being more clear about the multiplayer aspect since they advertise it on the box, and it was one of their 'big' selling points: the first console RPG with multiplayer.  My girlfriend and I really want to play through it together, but were frustrated when we couldn't figure that out.

It's most definitely not the first console RPG with multiplayer. Heck - Namco's other Tales games (the PS1 one we saw here in America at least) fully supported multiplayer once you got a certain item in the game.

That and the classic Final Fantasy 3 (6 if you go by the Japanese numbering system) supported multiplayer as well, technically. Not very well (as each player got a set of characters to use in combat), but it had multiplayer.

I'll have to go plug in a second controller into my 'Cube and give it a whirl tonight.
15480  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Favorite Genre on: July 16, 2004, 04:45:41 AM
Quote from: "Knightshade Dragon"
I went with RPG as well, but after playing FF X-2 and Drakengard I can say that isn't true for me

FFX-2 is a fan service title and Drakengard is more of an Action/RPG than anything else. Neither are a good example of a good RPG.

For that matter, what was the last good pure RPG out there? Heck - what was the last good pure RPG that I've played? Now that's a thought.

RPG for me though for favorite genre.
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