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Comment: Xenonauts also released (Score 3, Interesting) 50

by ACS Solver (#47237653) Attached to: <em>OpenXcom</em> 1.0 Released
A very good time to be an XCom fan.

Another release is that of Xenonauts, to be finally released next week. I think it's a must-have for fans of the classic XCom. Xenonauts is a modernized remake, but it keeps the same fundamental game mechanics (unlike the Firaxis version). Time units, multiple bases, great freedom in soldier inventory and other things from the original, and there's a huge amount of balancing and subtle improvements. I have played several indie and small-studio successors, such as UFO: Aftermath, UFO: Extraterrestrials, and UFO: Alien Invasion, but none of those have, in my opinion, captured the original's feeling, while Xenonauts managed to.

Comment: Re:Did you play Doom 3? (Score 2) 108

Not having anything new in gameplay was the point. Doom 3 was an old-school shooter, you with a huge arsenal of weapons vs. hordes of monstrosities from hell. And that was with amazing graphics. Doom 3 might have had really low resolution textures, but I think the lighting and shadowing remained unrivaled for years.

Though Doom3 did have a minor novelty I wish more games adapted. It had a really nice way of interacting with in-game monitors and computers, and I can't remember if any other games have done the same. Certainly not many, if there are any at all.

Comment: Re:Restrictions will be in place (Score 2) 46

by ACS Solver (#46229703) Attached to: North Korean Business Park Getting Internet Access
This is likely correct (I have likewise been somewhat of a NK watcher), but one important point. The general population doesn't have access to the NK intranet. Those that do aren't quite the country's elite, but still represent the better-off social class. Most access to the intranet happens through universities and major organizations, while close to half of NK's population lives outside cities, and in cities other than Pyongyang the infrastructure is nearly non-existent. Sariwon and Wonsan can be barely made out as lights in nighttime photos.

Comment: Re:Two big sources (Score 1) 926

by ACS Solver (#45383083) Attached to: Where Does America's Fear Come From?

I think that's a fair assessment of the American situation. But I wouldn't even say guns play much of a role in the situation.

To me it seems to be more of a combination of the very high quality of life that a large number of Americans enjoy, coupled with the fact that they do not remember existential threats. The quality of life is the same issue as anywhere in the world - the more people have, the more they have to lose, so they welcome measures that appear to make losing less likely. But also, US hasn't been really threatened for a long, long time. I think that when people are used to safety, it is natural to overreact to attacks. Where I'm from, older generations will vividly remember bombing raids, middle-aged people grew up under foreign occupation, and there were tanks and firefights in the streets a mere 20 years ago. A lot of Europe is similar. Spain or UK have had to contend with terrorism campaigns for a long time. Most countries took major losses at home in WW2, and numerous countries have had wars or violent revolutions in the decades since that. The lack of such events in living memory really sets the US apart.

Comment: Life is risky... (Score 1) 478

by Genda (#44762925) Attached to: Schneier: We Need To Relearn How To Accept Risk

We hate to see our children get injured, so we wrap them in wool, then bubble wrap, with a layer of nerf for good measure. We put them in schools that won't crush their fragile egos, declaring everyone's a winner. These pampered, protected children grow up into risk averse adults. Without getting them killed, there's a lot to be said for teaching kids and adults to take chances, push beyond their limits and discover both the cost and value of living a larger life.

Comment: Re:Blind Sense (Score 1) 164

by Genda (#44762139) Attached to: Genetic Convergent Evolution: Stunning Gene Similarities Among Diverse Animals

Sorry, there've been bats since the early Eocene around 52 million years ago, and since the ancestor of cetaceans came from land around 30 million years ago (and had no reason for echolocation), the trait was developed as they evolved into ocean going creatures while bats were happily echo locating the whole while. Sorry, interesting hypothesis... how did you account for echo locating genes getting back from cetacean to land dwelling animals?

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