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User Journal

Journal Journal: Where's the 2006 I was promised?

Where is the 2006 I was promised? I have never ridden a flying car, my workplace is not on the Moon, not that it matters much, since I have no rocket pack. I have to wear these stupid clothes made out of cloth instead of foil. Oh yeah, and I had to eat my food off a plate using a fork and a knife, like some idiot, when I should be popping pills for lunch.

The third millennium has so far been a huge rip off.

User Journal

Journal Journal: How do you make an Xbox 360 fanboy from a PS3 fanboy? 6

PS3 fanboy + Sony's embarassing E3 press conference + PS3's price + GTA4 on the Xbox 360 in October = Xbox 360 fanboy.

I'm so there.

Edit: Seriously Sony, grow a pair. I would have respected you so much more if you hadn't caved to some-guys-on-the-internet's mockery of your "batarang" controller and if you hadn't tacked on those stupid gyros on the controller.

God damn, I'm getting internet rage because of your stupidity.

Another edit: Duh: 360, not 306. Thank you, anonymous.

PlayStation (Games)

Journal Journal: Gameplay is a buzzword.

Gameplay is a buzzword. Any "true gamer" always values gameplay over graphics. Or rather: "True gamers" insist that modern and/or popular games games focus on graphics over gameplay. God forbid a popular game having really good graphics!

But what does good gameplay mean? Does it mean playability? If so, then the opposite of good gameplay is unplayability. What does an unplayable game mean? Does it mean something like "I really like the idea behind this game and it has nice presentation, but it just feels like I'm fighting against the interface trying to do things?" (Maybe more specifically "Wow, those aliens are cool and these guns are cool and boy does this game have good graphics, but man are these controls laggy", or "Why won't you jump into the direction i'm pointing the stick at? NO, DON'T JUMP INTO THE CHASM!")

Is there any game that has bad gameplay but still has millions of people just shrug and go "well, the graphics are so nice that I'll just keep on playing?" My guess is no.

Ah, so, a partial point emerges: If bad gameplay causes a game to sell poorly, why would a company release a game with bad gameplay? I think this is pretty well known and thus no "real" company releases games with bad gameplay.

Personally I can think of only one game that has had bad gameplay that I have liked. That game was Chicago 90 on the Amiga. It didn't even have that nice graphics. The mouse pointer moved really jerkily (yes, on an Amiga) around the screen, and the main gameplay window had a pretty poor framerate and if you crashed your car (as the bad guy) the game was over. Regardless, I just thought the game was fun. It was fun to try to outrun the cops, and as a police, it was fun to try to corner the bad guy. But that is just my personal opinion as I don't think the game was very popular.

And that is my main point. A game has to be fun. Bad gameplay often lessens the fun quite a bit, so it's not completely irrelevant, but if the game still manages to be fun, you can take you gameplay and shove it.

User Journal

Journal Journal: My pet peeve(s)

One thing I hate is people using "optional" plurals in programs.

The reasoning must be in the lines of:

  • I'm a lazy bastard and don't want to create two different strings and use something like 'if($num_items != 1) print("you have $num_items items") else print("you have 1 item")'.
  • On the other hand, the user might have 0, 1 or several items.
  • So if I only print "item", the string looks stupid when there are 0 or several items
  • And if I only print "items", the string looks stupid when there is exactly 1 item
  • I know, I'll print "item(s)" that way the string looks stupid every time!

Personally I recommend writing just the plural form. That way the string looks stupid only when there is exactly 1 item. It will look perfectly fine when there are 0, 0.5, 1.25, 100 or 7.12E20 items.

User Journal

Journal Journal: So, what plans do you have for your vacation? 1

Yeah, I'm on vacation for 1 week. My first in who knows how long.

Anyway, you know what I'm going to do on my vacation? Absolutely nothing! I'm going to sleep late and stay up playing Civ 4 and Metroid Prime 2 as long as I fucking want! You can keep your skiing holidays in Ass-pen or trips to spas. I do not want any stress during my vacation, especially from travel arrangements.

So a big neener neener to any of you who are reading this at work (hey, beats actually working).


Journal Journal: Stupid comments in code! 1

So you have a method, say "getMessage()". Do you really think that writing a comment that says "gets message." adds any information?

Especially in languages like PHP where the parameters and return values can be fucking anything you decided to shit out of your fingers?

Portables (Games)

Journal Journal: Aww, crap. (GTA: Liberty City Stories)

First of all: The game looks promising. I've played maybe 2 or 3 hours, and so far the game looks very GTA3-ish. This is a good thing if you liked GTA 3 and are not bored by the whole GTA game concept by now.

The game has at least one new side job: The car salesman. You have to take customers out for a spin in one of the four cars they have chosen. Then you have to impress the customer. So far I've seen four types of customers: "go really fast", "go really slow", "drive over pedestrians" and "make the car roll (but make sure you land on your tires)." Another "new" job is "noodle boy", which is just the same as pizza boy in Vice City.

Oh yeah, and the cops don't forget your wanted level if you go to your safe house to save. That's definitely a plus for me.

The "Aww, crap" -part of the game is that it only supports ad hoc mode for multiplayer. I only know two people who own a PSP. And neither of them can play the game. One needs the older firmware to code for the PSP and the other needs it to run warez. And by warez I of course mean homebrew games.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow

It fucking rocks.

Finally a game worth buying for Nintendo DS. Yes, it has some touch screen gimmicks, like you can select stuff from menus using a stylus (where the choices are maybe 8 pixels high), drawing magical seals to finish off bosses and destroying some blocks after you get the appropriate skill, but the main gameplay is old-school.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Delete temporary files in Windows using this script

I've made this handy script to delete the all kinds of unnecessary files from under each user's personal directory in Windows:

It deletes the caches of IE, Opera and Firefox, user-specific temp-folder, Windows's temp-folder and prefetch-folder and empties the recycling bins on the first four drives.

The script has been hardcoded to use C: as the system drive, so if your Documents and Settings -folder is on another drive, change the script. And you have to be some kind of super user to be able to access other users' personal folders.

Journal Journal: I'm a big boy now

Now I'm a true "grown up" slashdotter. I got modbombed yesterday! Apparently someone didn't like the devoid-of-content posts I've been making lately.


Journal Journal: The infinite joys of DVD region codes and "copy protection"

I have a DVD drive on my computer and on my PS2. I watch region 2 DVDs using the (unmodded) PS2. Any other region I watch on my PC.

I bought Walt Disney: One the Front Lines, a region 1 DVD, from Amazon. If I had watched it alone, I would have wathced it on my computer monitor. But since I wanted my friends to see it as well, I hooked my PC to the TV. This is where the problems started.

I tried to use PowerDVD to watch to movie, like I normally do, but it wouldn't play the movie, because my TV-out doesn't support Macrovision. Then I tried using Media Player Classic, but it said that the DVD had the wrong region.

About half an hour of googling later, I found a solution that worked: VideoLAN. We wee finally able to watch the DVD that I paid money for.

All these problems were caused by me paying for a movie. If I had just downloaded an Xvid DVD-rip, or a DVD image from the internet, or even ripped the DVD to an image on my hard disk, I would have had no problem playing it on my TV.

That is the reason I don't like copy protection schemes. They always screw the paying customer but do very little to stop actual copying and distribution.

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