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4041  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / How often do you reinstall Windows? on: November 30, 2004, 07:03:19 PM
before WinXP, i would either reinstall or upgrade at least once a year.  win98/Me needed to be cleaned out periodically due to slowdown, but the newer OSs are much better about taking care of themselves.  i've been running the same XP install on my gaming rig for about a year now without any trouble...my backup rig has had the same XP install for a couple years now and still runs great.  personally, i'm glad i don't need to reformat all the time now...it's not a difficult process, but it is time consuming.
4042  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Best Game of All Time Round 6 on: November 30, 2004, 05:33:58 PM
Planescape: Torment
Baldur's Gate 2
4043  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / LOTR Time Again - Holy crap! on: November 30, 2004, 12:05:41 AM
you beat me to it!  i just finished watching this and was coming here to post slywink

some of the video is a repeat, but there is some great new footage in there as well.  only 2 weeks to go!
4044  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Movie Quote Game - Round 2 on: November 29, 2004, 10:58:43 PM
Quote from: "stuntgibbon"
"Perhaps, on your way home, someone will pass you in the dark, and you will never know it... for they will be from outer space. "

and the guy who thought Miller's Crossing was obscure quotes Plan 9 from Outer Space... slywink
here's a new one...

"If the good Lord had intended us to walk he wouldn't have invented roller-skates"
4045  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Nintendo DS on: November 29, 2004, 10:51:57 PM
Quote from: "ElijahPrice"
Isn't it pretty much sold out everywhere?

my local EB still has a shelf full of them...
4046  Non-Gaming / Steals and Deals / EB Black Friday sale on: November 29, 2004, 09:28:00 PM
i went online at about 11:30am on friday to get Call of Duty for $9.99...no way i was going to an actual store that day.  i chose the cheap shipping and it went out saturday afternoon...was really surprised to find the game in my mailbox today.  two business days from order to delivery by USPS media mail is pretty impressive...especially considering how many orders they must have shipped this weekend.
4047  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / HL2 Level Help Thread on: November 29, 2004, 05:37:52 AM
Quote from: "jonsauce"
You are supposed to go down the shaft.  Don't jump across from one to the other, just kinda drop down either clockwise or counterclockwise.

yep...the shaft is the way to go, and it's actually pretty easy if done correctly.  if you look at the beams, each level has a beam that slopes down at stops about halfway along a side...drop off the end of that beam to the one below and you can't miss.

one other word of advice...stay on the lowest beam and take out some of the headcrabs from there.  the room at the bottom is loaded with them, and it's much easier to stay where they can't reach you.  it's actually possible to take them all out before you hit the ground.
4048  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Recommendations for DVD viewing software? on: November 26, 2004, 05:44:12 AM
i've been using PowerDVD for several years now and it's the best i've found...works great and is loaded with features.  a lot of people also like WinDVD, but i gave that one a shot and wasn't as impressed.  either one of them will do a good job though...and i can just about guarantee that one of those two is what came with your drive.
4049  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half life 2 and pants pooping. Funny story with Spoilers. on: November 24, 2004, 01:10:51 AM
Quote from: "Jeff Jones"
I'm at that part now, and just had a funny moment. You know those whirly-blade things in the middle of the road that you can turn on .. I turned this one on, and it got one kill then the blade flew off, so I started using the loose blade as a weapon.  On one shot, I fired the big blade thing and it cut a zombie in half but the blade hit the wall behind him, and shot back past me, hit another wall behind me, then careened right back into me, KILLING ME.

LOL. physics rule thumbsup

i had a similar situation, except i had a sawblade bounce back.  that's when i learned that they don't always stick in the walls...
4050  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / RC cars as a hobby. on: November 23, 2004, 06:35:50 PM
Quote from: "ericb"
Not to hijack the thread but if anyone has their old RC cars/parts laying around and wants to get rid of them then shoot me an email.  Possibly buy or trade (console, PC, DVDs, other electronics).

this reminds of the only problem i have with my R/C car now...
my Ultima II is over ten years old now and parts are getting harder to come by all the time.  it makes me a little more reluctant to go crazy with it because i never know if i'll be able to find a replacement part next time something breaks.  one of these days, i need to have a look on eBay and see if i can find someone selling the same car cheap, or at least a lot of spare parts...or i could just use that as another reason to get a new car sometime Cool
4051  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half life 2 and pants pooping. Funny story with Spoilers. on: November 23, 2004, 06:31:12 PM
Quote from: "Atragon"
IMO, those are the worst part, they're too fast and jumpy to reliably nail with a sawblade.

a shotgun blast to the face really slows them down though slywink
one of my favorite moments in that area was when i did manage to catch one with a sawblade.  the zombie was bounding across the rooftops and took a leap straight at me from a higher building.  i saw it coming the whole time and waited until it was airborn, then let the sawblade fly...the blade sliced it in half in mid-air a good distance away, but the zombies forward momentum caused both halves to land right at my feet.  that was probably one of my coolest moments in Ravenholm Cool
4052  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Video card Question on: November 23, 2004, 02:50:44 AM
Quote from: "ebane67"
Isthere anywhere i can look that has good, informative reviews and/or comparisons of graphic cards? Being on a budget, i would like to know what cards are affordable but 'decent'.  I can spend about 250 bucks.
Or can you guys give me any hints?

i would recommend checking out the video card reviews over at Anandtech.com and Tom's Hardware...both sites put up new comparisons of cards at different price levels just about every time a new card is released.  Tom's Hardware put up a Graphics Card Buyer's Guide last week that does a good job of summarizing all the latest offerings.  Anandtech probably has something similar on their site if you look around a little Cool
4053  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / RC cars as a hobby. on: November 22, 2004, 11:46:14 PM
i got a 1/10-scale electric car years ago and got somewhat heavily into the R/C hobby for a little while.  while it does require an initial investment of at least a couple hundred dollars, the long-term costs aren't terrible as long as you don't abuse your car too much and find yourself needing to replace parts all the time.  i would say that gas-powered cars are more popular right now, but they do have disadvantages...more expensive, more complex, and they make a fair amount of noise.  i never got into gas, but i'd love to get try it out sometime when i have a little more disposable income again.  

electric cars, on the other hand, are mechanically pretty simple, typically cheaper, and they're quiet enough that you can play around your house without bothering the neighbors.  one downside to electric cars that i think anyone interested should be aware of is the short run-time for a fast car...the faster the car, the quicker it will drain your battery pack.  charging a battery usually takes anywhere from 15-30 minutes, then you get about 5-7 minutes of running time before you need another charge.  those few minutes are an absolute blast though.

my first real car, a Kyosho Ultima II, was relatively cheap...spent about $250 to get up and running (car, radio, battery, charger).  it's an addictive hobby though and wasn't long before i was upgrading every part i could to make it go just a little faster...i was determined to beat my brother's RC10 Team Car.  we had a great time racing both on the road and off, and even took the cars out to an empty parking lot and used my dad's police car to clock them one day.  after countless upgrades and tweaking, i managed to get 27mph out of my little car.  like i said before though, speed comes at a price with electric cars...my 49,000rpm motor drains a 30min charge in about 5 minutes.  i put that thing through hell and it still runs like new today.  i even took a few pics Cool

My Kyosho Ultima II - outside & inside

i think R/C cars are a great hobby.  you can get started relatively cheap and invest as you become more serious.  a good car can take quite a bit of abuse, and you can always repair them as long as you have the money for parts...unlike the cheap cars at wal-mart, a good car is built yourself and can be just as easily taken apart for repairs.  R/C cars are fun if you like to work with your hands and build/dismantle/tweak stuff...can even learn a little about electronics, engines, and transmissions/gearings while you're at it.  i even branched out a little and bought an electric speedboat eventually...those are a lot of fun as long as you don't let the battery run out in the middle of a pond (been there, done that).  my ultimate goal is to try a helicopted someday though Cool

i think the best thing to do starting out is head to a hobby shop that deals in a lot of R/C gear and see what's available...check out gas vs. electric, onroad vs. off, and see what you like.  if you want to check out R/C car magazines, i'd recommend picking up an issue of R/C Car Action.  i got that mag for years and it was always good...only cancelled because they started to focus almost entirely on gas cars and i was into electric.  i would also recommend Tower Hobbies as a good place to do some shopping.  they've been around for years and sell damn near anything you can imagine at a reasonable price...i guess you could say they were my "newegg of the R/C world" back in the day slywink
4054  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half-Life 2 Impressions (Possible Spoilers) on: November 22, 2004, 10:33:38 PM
Quote from: "Jeff Jones"
One thing that struck me in Ravenholm, is that Valve is saying to us ... here's your toys, have fun! the way they set things up, they really let the player enjoy himself.  Shooters are fun because you get to kick ass, and Valve understands that. They let the player kick ass in a big way.

i did my best to carry a saw blade  (or some other heavy object) just about everyplace i went in ravenholm and hardly used any ammo as a result.  the place really is a big playground from the grav gun, but the atmosphere and enemies keep it interesting...and Father Grigori is a great character.  my best moment in Ravenholm involved a fast zombie coming at me across the rooftops...as it jumped in the air from a roof above me, i launched my trusty saw blade, sliced him in half in mid-leap, and watched the body parts fall right at my feet.  it was a great moment and just one of many awesome scenes in the game so far Cool
4055  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / good, free firewall? on: November 22, 2004, 01:40:32 AM
while ZA is probably going to get the most endorsements around here, i'll throw another name into the mix...

Outpost Firewall from Agnitum

i used the free version for almost a year on my old PC and it works really well...it's still there, but i don't that system has been relegated to a backup now.  i decided to give ZA a shot on my newer system just to be different and have stuck with it...there's very little difference in the two, and both do their job well though.
4056  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Miss Digital World contest on: November 22, 2004, 01:34:05 AM
the link did work earlier and i checked out a few of the shots.  some of them are pretty impressive, but a lot of them could use more work...
4057  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: for which system? on: November 22, 2004, 01:03:04 AM
Quote from: "mytocles"
are these PC games?

thanks,

yes they are...and a good deal.  i'd snatch it up if i didn't already have half of them...
4058  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Counterstrike: What's the deal? on: November 20, 2004, 05:56:41 PM
Quote from: "DonD"
And both had offline modes so you don't feel like an idiot / team liability online.

if you want to spend some time learning the levels, you can start your own server in which you're the only player and just take the time to explore.  get to know the areas and try out the different weapons a little...because it's your server, you can set the starting money and buy times really high and try everything out.  i've never played CS before and that's what i was doing while i waited for HL2 to unlock Cool
4059  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / HL2 Level Help Thread on: November 20, 2004, 07:25:11 AM
Quote from: "hohum"
Appreciate the reply disarm.

Let's see if I can pin point the location!  You come up a flight of stairs and encounter a myriad of fences. Directly ahead is an opening to a stairwell and/or an oil tanker which leads to the other side of the tracks. After numerous encounters with baddies which I solved,  I can only find one possible way out. I returned back across the tracks, up the stairwell and immediately to my right is a dumpster with a number of blue plastic trash cans. The dumpster is on my side of a rather tall fence, separating the location where I eliminated a bunch of baddies while on the other side of the tracks.

i loaded up that area again and found exactly what you're talking about...at the very beginning or 'Route Kanal' right?  here's what you need to do...

first off, forget about jumping that dumpster and getting over the fence...that's not the right way.  you need to stay on the opposite side of the tracks...walk across the top of the train cars to the ladder on the other side and go through the small building (break the boards blocking the doorway with your crowbar).  as soon as you go out the back doorway of the building, there's another fence with a gate in it (to your left) that you have to open (and kill a few Combine guys).  go through the gate and around the corner of the building and you'll see another fence...directly in front of you are the tracks and you'll have to kill a few more guys across the way.  you should see a section of the fence that is actually bent over...jump over that low point in the fence and you should be on your way again Cool
4060  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / HL2 Level Help Thread on: November 20, 2004, 05:38:51 AM
Quote from: "hohum"
Help an old dude out guys. In the play on words level,  "Route Kanal" is the exit over the fence adjoining the dumpster? If so, my jumping skills need to improve markedly.

I've stacked everything I can find on top of the dumpster and still can't make it over the friggen fence.

On the other hand, if the dumpster plays no roll,  an obligatory DUH is expected but a slight clue would be greatly appreciated.

Us old folks need all the help we can get.

i just got out of that area yesterday, so i'd be glad to help...if i knew where you were talking about.  can you give a little more detail about your location?  that's a pretty long chapter, and there are fences everywhere...
4061  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / HL2 Level Help Thread on: November 19, 2004, 03:24:40 PM
Quote from: "Goonch"
Quote from: "BigRedCat"
Go to the attic.


I did that already. Am I supposed to lower the crane?

Are you supposed to try to find your way to the house that is in the back of the barn?

**spoiler**


go to the attic and whack the barrel stuck in the crane winch with your crowbar...that'll make the crane drop and get things moving again.  there's nothing to do with the house.  by the way...did you notice the G-man standing by the bard as you approached?  you were being watched...
4062  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / What's the truly scariest pc gaming experience you've had? on: November 19, 2004, 08:24:11 AM
i think the marine missions of AvP2 kept me on the edge of my seat pretty well...i enjoyed every minute of it though.  Doom3 has a lot of good moments that make you jump in your chair and keeps you on your toes.  Phantasmagoria was definitely an interesting game...not necessarily scary, but definitely had some really bizarre/disturbing moments.  they're all good games in my opinion and the tension level they keep up is one of the big reasons why.

i think i'll be entering the Ravenhold area of HL2 pretty soon...should be interesting to see if it lives up to the hype...:twisted:
4063  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / First half of Rivalry Weekend kicks off this Saturday! on: November 19, 2004, 08:16:25 AM
not that i'm expecting it to be a good game by any stretch of the imagination, but IU and Purdue face off for possession of the Old Oaken Bucket on saturday.  too bad IU is terrible (my alma mater), and Purdue isn't looking so hot right now either...
4064  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Best Game of All Time Round 5 on: November 18, 2004, 07:13:49 AM
Left:

Half-Life
Planescape: Torment

Right:

Baldur's Gate 2
Knights of the Old Republic

i guess i'm a little bit of an RPG fan slywink
4065  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Guess who came to my office and gave us his thanks for on: November 18, 2004, 05:22:19 AM
you should have asked him to "stick around" for a little while slywink

that still has to be one of my favorite moments from predator...although i think jesse ventura has all the best lines...

"This stuff will make you a god damned sexual Tyrannosaurus, just like me" - Blain biggrin
4066  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [HL2] Is Gordon psychic? on: November 17, 2004, 07:20:43 PM
Quote from: "Jeff Jones"
ha.. I'll never forget Trespasser's "one armed rifle" animation. It's one of the goofiest things I've ever seen in a game.

i would have thought that honor belongs to looking at the heart tattoo by your cleavage to check your health...
4067  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: ANNOYED on: November 17, 2004, 07:36:10 AM
Quote from: "PaulBot"
I've got people urging me to get to the roof ASAP, and when it gets REALLY INTENSE, up pops "LOADING" in the middle of my screen for 30+ seconds.

Sheesh, what a mood spoiler....

i had that same reaction there, but it hasn't happened again yet.  every load i've come across since has occurred in a pretty benign area...usually right in front of a door, or as you're walking down an empty hallway.

and a neat little trick i found...
did you guys try playing with the little teleporter in dr kleiner's lab at the beginning (one that teleports a plant)?  i went to hit the button once and accidentally picked up the plant.  that gave me an idea...will it teleport other objects?  sure enough...i started putting other objects from around lab on the teleporter and it beamed them back and forth just like the plant.  pretty cool Cool
4068  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / HL2 performance thread on: November 17, 2004, 07:23:42 AM
P4-3.0gHz
1GB DDR400-Dual channel
9800 Pro-128mb

i'm running at 1280x1024 with all the settings maxed, no AA, and trilinear AF...looks great and runs smooth as silk.  i tried bumping up the AA/AF settings and can get by with a little before it starts to slow down, but the difference in the image isn't significant (unless you slow down and stand still long enough to look for the jaggies), so i just turned it back down and enjoy a nice FPS.  very impressive performance for such a great looking game.

only "complaint" is that i do get that sound stuttering occassionally...usually pretty soon after loading an area, then it goes away.  it's really minor and doesn't detract from such a great game though Cool
4069  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [hl2]New complaint - why do I need the cd in the drive?! on: November 17, 2004, 03:41:36 AM
Quote from: "Greggy_D"
Did anyone try just pre-loading the files from Steam and then entering your retail CD key?  In other words, do not install off of the CD's.

that's an interesting idea...i might try it at some point, but for now HL2 is all i'll be playing so i can just leave the disc in my drive.  that would be a great solution if it works though.

as for a no-CD crack...i have my concerns over how well that will work.  with the auto-update features of Steam, i wonder if it would ever cause a problem.  i'd hate to get an auto-update then be unable to play because noone has released a new no-CD yet...
4070  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half-Life 2 Impressions (Possible Spoilers) on: November 16, 2004, 09:21:39 AM
Quote from: "Scoop20906"
For cripes sakes, what was the point of unlocking it if it has to check for the CD?
my thoughts exactly...i was a little surprised when the message to insert my CD came up.  unfortunately, given the nature of Steam and updates, i'm guessing that keeping a working no-CD crack may prove to be a real pain.  the game does use Securom for the disc check though, so it should be possible...

as for the game, i've played up to the point where getting shot matters and i'm pretty impressed so far.  the graphics and animations are very impressive, and i had a good time trying out the physics on a playground...pretty neat stuff.  it's 4:25am right now though...will have to pick it up again tomorrow...
4071  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half-Life 2 Impressions (Possible Spoilers) on: November 16, 2004, 08:20:12 AM
Quote from: "Xmann"
ok i cant get the dl to start, anyone else?
try shutting down Steam and restarting...did the trick for me, and my d/l just finished!

i'm going in...have fun guys!
4072  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half-Life 2 Impressions (Possible Spoilers) on: November 16, 2004, 06:32:49 AM
i was going to catch a quick nap before 3am...it's not panning out though.  i was flipping through tv channels before i dozed off on the couch and came across Long Way Around, ewan mcgregor's motorcycle trip around the world, on Bravo...very interesting show.  so now it's 1:30am and i'm still awake.  only 90 minutes to go though Cool

has anyone else checked the Steam Network Status recently?  i think it's pretty interesting that the available bandwidth took a significant jump a little while ago...guess they're gearing up for the big moment...
4073  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half-Life 2 Impressions (Possible Spoilers) on: November 16, 2004, 05:49:52 AM
Quote from: "warning"
Actually I'm doing you a favor.  The more we pad this baby to page 2 the faster time accelerates and the faster The Great Unlocking happens.

we'd better hurry then...still about 20 posts away from the 2nd page...
4074  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half Life 2: Countdown to November 16 on: November 16, 2004, 04:35:10 AM
Quote from: "Sparhawk"
IS it midnight in each timezone?

it's midnight PST...everyone else has to adjust accordingly (3am EST, 8am GMT, 10pm Wednesday if you live in Fiji).  it's a simultaneous worldwide release...everyone gets to play the game at exactly the same time Cool
4075  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half Life 2: Countdown to November 16 on: November 16, 2004, 01:56:47 AM
i was looking through the Steam forums the other day and came across a little Flash movie that someone made about people posting there...got a few laughs from me.  check it out...

Posting and You...

i think it sums up the attitude over there pretty well.
4076  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / My Big Fat Obnoxious Boss - Anyone else? (Guilty Pleasure) on: November 16, 2004, 01:46:21 AM
i'll admit to watching parts of both episodes.  i thought one of the best parts of the first episode was the little reception they had after introducing the boss.   the boss claimed to be serving expensive hors d'oeuvres and champagne, and the contestants were all talking about how good it was and obviously very expensive...little did they know that champagne was the cheapest stuff available, and the patte was made from Spam and bologna biggrin

the second episode had the teams trying to sell hot soup from street carts on a sunny july afternoon in chicago.  when the teams started doing better than expected, the producers sent in guys with Italian Ice carts to follow them around and steal their business.  
they also had a pretty funny moment between the last two contestants in the board room.  the boss asked the first girl to give 3 reasons the other should be hired...then he turned the tables on them.  the first girl was expecting a turn at being complemented, but instead the boss asked for 3 reasons she should be fired.  the look of astonishment the girl's face was priceless.  his little "on the one had *blah, blah*...on the other hand, get the hell out!" was pretty funny too.

personally, i think the 'secret boss' gimmick is pretty lame.  it's probably going to be some kind of animal sitting in the chair...my money's on a monkey.
4077  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Neat on: November 16, 2004, 01:31:57 AM
that's definitely cool...some neat artwork in there Cool
4078  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half Life 2 - the reviews are in on: November 15, 2004, 09:00:31 PM
Quote from: "Hetz"
Story and AI are disappointing?!?!?!


that's according to Gamespot...read the IGN review and you get a totally different opinion.  yet another example of how you reviews should always be taken with a grain of salt...
4079  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Is there anyone who still needs/wants a Gmail invite? on: November 15, 2004, 08:41:44 PM
i still have 11 Gmail invites available for anyone that's interested.  you have to send me an e-mail if you want one though (in my profile) Cool
4080  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / HL2: Steam vs Retail on: November 15, 2004, 06:59:34 PM
i bought mine Retail on saturday.  while i have no issues with using Steam (i think it's a great idea) and believe in supporting the developers instead of a publisher,  i was able to save a few bucks by going to BestBuy.  i had some coupons around and walked out with my copy of HL2 for $46...couldn't do that on Steam.  i also had no interest in the extras included with the silver/gold packages, so getting only HL2 and CS:S in the Retail package is fine with me...and fit my budget better.
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