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Comment: Re:OpenGL? (Score 1) 42

by Kjella (#49172885) Attached to: Khronos Group Announces Vulkan To Compete Against DirectX 12

They've come full circle:
1. AMD announces Mantle, a low level graphics API which may give consoles an edge over the PC.
2. Microsoft panics and announces DirectX 12, aiming for pretty much the same thing.
3. Khronos Group panics and announces OpenGL Vulcan, aiming for pretty much the same thing.
4. AMD announces there'll be no public SDK of Mantle, use OpenGL/DirectX.

So in the end we'll probably have feature parity again. How important it is remains to be seen, outside of drawcall benchmarks it's unclear how much real world difference it makes, what is certain is that it exposes a lot more of the complexity to the developer. That of course gives you more room to optimize, but it remains to be seen how many will be able to take advantage of it.

On the bright side, it might actually mean there's less code that needs to be written and that open source might catch up a bit, it says it'll run on top of all platforms that support OpenGL ES 3.1 which might become a much bigger goal than OpenGL 4.x.

Comment: Re:Way too expensive for my blood... (Score 1) 50

by drinkypoo (#49172795) Attached to: Games Workshop At 40: How They Brought D&D To Britain

Well, considering to compete in a tournament you MUST paint the figures, that already excludes people like me who have NO artistic skill, Or even just fine painting skills.

Look, you only need three paint colors, and primer counts. So you base coat them in either white or black, paint helmets and shoulders in another color, and paint weapons either in gray (or gunmetal, fancy!) for models with black primer, or in black for models with any other color of primer. Now you're done. You don't even have to paint your bases green.

This is not really an arduous requirement. The level of fine motor skill necessary for this level of painting is pretty low, it takes a fair amount just to position your models on any kind of decent playing field, take your measurements and so on. If you can handle that, you should be able to handle the paintwork.

I can understand side tournaments where people compete based on their artistic skill that's unrelated to the main event, but tying the two together means someone like me who can't paint worth a damn won't even bother trying to enter.

Well, that's a valid reason why they're going away. Another is that video gaming now makes the more rules-and-dice tabletop gaming obsolete. The computer now manages all that annoying fiddly stuff. It's really put the boot into warhammer, battletech, and all the other miniatures-heavy games with rulers and protractors and shit-tons of dice, even if they are all D6.

Comment: Re:I hesitate to comment (Score 1) 93

by drinkypoo (#49172613) Attached to: What Would Minecraft 2 Look Like Under Microsoft?

Microsoft is pretty good at buying games and not ruining them, the original Halo aside. I actually think that was a great game in every way except for the monotonous level design in the end, and the lack of cross-platform support. You can't rush greatness, and you shouldn't force your operating system on people. That's kind of what they do, though, so it's not much of a surprise.

Microsoft has their hits, but they also have their significant misses. Where's our Freelancer 2? Handing that franchise to anyone competent and telling them to support capships and not ruin the control scheme would have permitted them to simply print money.

I've bought quite a few Microsoft games, it's one of the things I think they do best in fact, mostly by virtue of not doing it themselves. I hope they don't totally bone it, but I won't be surprised if they do. And if they do, someone will surely replace it.

Anyway, off the topic of Microsoft, and to join in talking about what would be cool for Minecraft, it absolutely must have functioning boats. Along with more realistic water, specifically ocean that fills in to level on its own, it would add a new dimension that would probably give the series a whole new kick in the pants. Ninjas vs. Pirates, anyone?

And with that said, anyone know of any minecraft clones which are capable of doing something like that? You build a ship, and then either roll it into the sea or dig the land out from beneath it? It seems like rather an obvious thing to have wanted to support from the beginning. A one-block boat doesn't do it for me.

Comment: Re:Here's hoping they bought it to close it down. (Score 1) 93

by drinkypoo (#49172473) Attached to: What Would Minecraft 2 Look Like Under Microsoft?

Oh, come on. D&D players were not outcasts

Tee hee. Maybe not all of them.

There was cross-branding; cartoons and wood burning kits, for cryin' out loud.

Yeah, look at the other cartoons which were competing with D&D. They were simply handed a complete franchise for a great deal, of course they took it. And it was a flop.

Wood-burning kits are kind of a reasonable crossover, because that was a dying hobby, too.

Comment: Re:We all know what we expect is not what we want (Score 1) 93

by drinkypoo (#49172451) Attached to: What Would Minecraft 2 Look Like Under Microsoft?

I would expect the PC game to cost slightly more than the Xbox 180 version, and not have a subscription fee. I presume your other predictions will actually come true. I could also see it being a free-to-pay game, though. Given Windows 10 is going to be free for Windows 7 and 8 users, it might make sense to give MC2 away to Windows 10 users as well, and charge a small fee to other players. Use some lame excuse about having to support older versions of DirectX.

Comment: Displaying doesn't mean understanding (Score 1) 216

by Kjella (#49171931) Attached to: Why We Should Stop Hiding File-Name Extensions

Windows users still need to activate extension visibility manually - even though email-transmitted viruses depend most on less savvy users who will never do this.

...and wouldn't understand even if they did. The only people who enable file extensions are those who understand file extensions, that's a pretty big bias right there. Sure, you can show the rest a file extension but it'll fly right past them just like all the dialogs they don't read but click "OK" on. Like when I accidentally made a rar instead of a zip file and my friend couldn't figure out how to open it. Nice guy, but he doesn't use Google. He wouldn't install 7z or WinRAR unless you pointed him to it and said download this. And I'm pretty sure he'd run absolutely anything I pointed him to.

Comment: Re:Better idea (Score 1) 216

by drinkypoo (#49171857) Attached to: Why We Should Stop Hiding File-Name Extensions

With the Windows Start Screen and OSX Launchpad there's no excuse for showing executables as anything but a generic executable icon in the file system. let the custom icons for executables live in the app launcher (where everything is an executable so you don't need to be told that the one that looks like a document is not a simple document).

Yeah, we tried that with Windows 3.1, but Win32 permitted storing the icon in the executable because you could do that on the Macintosh.

If you want all exes to have a boring icon, use a boring file manager for admin tasks.

Comment: Re:5% Gross is a terrible deal (Score 1) 133

by drinkypoo (#49171827) Attached to: Unreal Engine 4 Is Now Free

The reason I say that is that Java is perfectly capable of running a game like Minecraft well, and because I've never seen any performance issues in Minecraft even on my now 7 year old PC,

Try comparing it to one of the clones. Diddle the settings until you get similar visual detail and then check the frame rates. Prepare for jaw droppage. Minecraft is absolutely awful about performance.

Minecraft performance problems certainly don't seem to be global and that's why it has to be down to some kind of hardware incompatibility somewhere along the line.

No, just not everyone is complaining. But Minecraft falls down very hard on complex scenes which render fine with e.g. minetest.

Comment: Re:Way too expensive for my blood... (Score 1) 50

by drinkypoo (#49171797) Attached to: Games Workshop At 40: How They Brought D&D To Britain

Also, they want to sell you paint. Although I have noticed that their primer in particular truly is epic. I've used it even in automotive applications, as a midcoat to get around a paint interaction. I sure wish I knew who made it for them so I could get it at a reasonable price.

Comment: Re:Sooo... (Score 1) 43

by drinkypoo (#49171783) Attached to: NVIDIA Fixes Old Compiz Bug

After reading the wiki article on Compiz, it seems to be the same animation/fluff shit Linux users got pissed off at Microsoft for including...?

What Linux users are pissed off at Microsoft for adding fluff? They must have sad and pathetic lives even by Slashdot standards, because you can turn all that stuff off.

What Linux users get pissed off at Microsoft for is forcing fluff, like when you have to use a GUI tool to configure something. But they are getting much better about embracing the command line. The next Windows will supposedly have even better headless support.

Compiz does do all the eye candy shiny shiny stuff. But you can turn features on and off atomically, and there is a great deal of configuration available for each feature. If for example you like many of the aspects of the OSX desktop, but some of the features bother you or you wish they worked a little bit differently, you can get the precise effect you're looking for with Compiz.

Sadly, my favorite window manager (emerald) is not being developed any more, but between emerald, compiz, and avant-window-navigator it's possible to build a maclike desktop which actually works properly, and which has only useful eye candy like smooth moves (nice for seeing where windows go) and an Expose-like feature with no borders. That is, you can turn them off. And of course, mipmapped previews.

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