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The Political Compass (Armed and Dangerous) in General
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #30
quote:
I find that indicative of poor breeding and poor character development.
As I find the inability to see beyond one's own limited view of the world. Though I would not be so arrogant to question others "breeding" from the results of a poll.

People exposed primarily to one religion or culture or who have spent their lives in only one region of the world can quickly jump to such conclusions and make sharp judgements without considering a range of possibilities for each answer.

The idea that one must take a hard, unflinching stance on any of these issues without contemplating the value of the other side's argument is ludicrous. "Breeding" indeed.

Besides, many of these issues that are so "important" are really just so much ado about nothing to anyone who's been forced to live outside of their comfy ideological shell for any period of time. Try living in an apartment in Tokyo for 10 years, separated from friends and family back home, where Christianity is less than 1% of the population (not that I was/am an X-ian anyway), where "Republicans" and "Democrats" debates seem a distant memory and a multi party system dominated by Socially Conservative and Fiscally Liberal "LDP" reigns (well, in deeds if not in words not so different from today's Republicans perhaps). You are an outsider no matter how hard you might strive to learn the culture, but you love it just the same.

Because (among other things) it has taken you out of that world of self-important "Liberals" ranting wildly at the Daily KOS and "Conservatives" Lapping up Rush Limbaugh and given you a whole new way to look at things - a more balanced and even-handed view - something that is apparenly discouraged by the intellectual "elite" in their think-tanks in the United States. As Rush would say "If you're in the middle of the road, you get run over".

To quote Carl Sagan (since he's on my mind today):

quote:
We succeeded in taking that picture [from deep space], and, if you look at it, you see a dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever lived, lived out their lives. The aggregate of all our joys and sufferings, thousands of confident religions, ideologies and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilizations, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every hopeful child, every mother and father, every inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every superstar, every supreme leader, every saint and sinner in the history of our species, lived there on a mote of dust, suspended in a sunbeam.

The earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that in glory and in triumph they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of the dot on scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner of the dot. How frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.

Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity -- in all this vastness -- there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. It is up to us. It's been said that astronomy is a humbling, and I might add, a character-building experience. To my mind, there is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly and compassionately with one another and to preserve and cherish that pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.



[ Friday, October 12, 2007 13:08: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
After getting passed over for the internet in General
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #6
quote:
Originally written by Lt. Sullust:

Towards the end of his political career Arafat worked hard to end the turmoil in that region...
And that worked out so well. :P
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
After getting passed over for the internet in General
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #4
If this guy can win: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yasser_Arafat

I'm not sure I'd be all that proud.

Seems to me the prize is more of a political statement than a mark of true achievement.

If anyone, Carl Sagan deserved the Prize for his "uplifting criticism" of Humanity more than Gore, but he wasn't political enough I guess.

Read "A Pale Blue Dot", and tell me that his book was less impressive than Gore's "Truth" on the subject of preserving the Earth for future generations.

Maybe he needed more swimming Polar Bears.

[ Friday, October 12, 2007 07:14: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
The Political Compass (Armed and Dangerous) in General
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #28
Yes to the loaded questions. Felt like a college student at Berkeley wrote them. It came out as I expected though because I rejected the loaded questions and I came out as a slightly right leaning of center Libertarian. While I might have an "extreme" view or two - like Strongly Agree to "Eye for and Eye", most of my votes balance me out on the whole leaving me close to Neutral.

IMAGE(http://www.politicalcompass.org/facebook/pcgraphpng.php?ec=0.38&soc=-2.10)

I'm also apparently not fit to be a leader.

IMAGE(http://www.politicalcompass.org/images/internationalchart.gif)

[ Friday, October 12, 2007 05:57: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
no full-screen? in Geneforge Series
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #10
dxwnd is out there if you google it. Seems like most people use it for Maple Story.

Certainly a much simpler solution than mine. :)
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Sanity pile near door in General
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #10
Yes, I love obscure D&D references!

Tyrantfog Zombie - Priests of evil deities slain by rival deities or their servants. They spread disease and are surrounded by a sickening fog cloud.

IMAGE(http://www.wizards.com/dnd/images/mof_gallery/MonFaePG85.jpg)
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Canned in General
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #5
quote:
Originally written by Yama Toman?:

Canning (note the second 'n', muffin) is a warning status. It warns you that your behavior is one step away from a ban.

I've heard of extreme punishments, but I'd take a banning over a caning! ;) (couldn't resist)

IMAGE(http://www.whackynation.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/04/caning.jpg)
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Oh my got I made it though the first zone without Tyro Dying! in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #10
Wot is joo sayee--n'? It's oh my got!

(search Urban Dictionary)

;)

[ Thursday, October 11, 2007 06:06: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Do you like changes in Avernum or not in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #9
quote:
Originally written by KnowledgeBrew:

A4 was perfect aside from the whole not being able to transverse the whole screen with one MC.

That is actually highly annoying. If there is some reason I need to stop, then stop me wherever or whenever I hit the obstacle, but otherwise let me travel as far as anywhere I've revealed on the map previously.
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Geneforge 5 is its last... in Geneforge Series
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #18
I am
caNnot
write fuLl
sentenses
yes?

Wow, I really do hate textspeak with the strange breaks for text. It's like writing a sentence longer than 5 words is a chore, and paragraphs are unheard of. :)

I have to wonder if we will have people speaking like this to each other in social situations soon.

"so is you...
gonna...
eat....
that ---- I think it is a...
good pie?"

"nO this is my...
pie...
I --- eat IT!"

It's double-plus ungood if you ask me.

Or perhaps I'm just wrong and its all some kind of deep Haiku!

Serious error.

All shortcuts have disappeared.

Screen. Mind. Both are blank.

[ Wednesday, October 10, 2007 08:41: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Do you like changes in Avernum or not in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #5
Comparing Nethergate:Res. to A4, I have to say that while I miss some things from the old engine, like elevated terrain, less character portraits, and the cool/fun Phil Foglio-type artwork for the skills (not sure who did it for N:R), I prefer Avernum 4's look and feel on the whole.

And I have not played much of Geneforge, so I'm not biased that way.

I just think the BoA / N:R engine is past its prime and too retro for most casual non-retro gamers to enjoy. I feel confident in telling a non-retro gamer to try Geneforge 4, for instance.

That said, I think BoA will stand the test of time and be a classic that will outlive Avernum4 in the long run.

Avernum 5 on the other hand, sounds like it will be a really great game.

What I don't want to see in the future is a cheesey 3-d engine with chunky textured graphics like the original Neverwinter Nights as Jeff's next new engine. Or close ups with 3d characters talking that have mouths that don't move (but heads that bob strangely).

If he does go 3d, I'd rather see him do so while sticking with a fixed isometric view style, like some RTS games do, zooming in only temporarily for the fun of checking out your character in different angles and without a lot of camera angle funkiness during the game. In other words, to add depth and realism, not confounding game play and camera angle manipulation.

[ Wednesday, October 10, 2007 07:12: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Metal for Dawdy? in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #0
Found some iron bars, sold them to Dawdy (smith in Fort Monastery) and noticed that while the other active quests go away this one does not. Trying to clear my active quests before I move on, so....does Dawdy ever say "enough" or is this quest forever on your active list?
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Avernum 4 Observations in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #31
Thanks for the feedback, I still am early enough in the game that I could swap out for a Nephil for at least one of the characters. Oddly enough I had one initially, and felt he was progressing poorly so I swapped him out with another human! I hadn't considered how he might benefit later in the game.
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Avernum 4 Observations in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #27
quote:

Okay, I just tried the workaround for fudging the character graphics mentioned here again. This is another thing I'd tried before, but hadn't been able to make work. Well, today is my lucky day, I guess, because it worked fine for me this time. Yay! (I must have been totally out to lunch the day I tried all these things before or something, I dunno.) Anyway, thought I'd add that, both to forestall the advice, and also to direct any new readers to that trick.

I'm only in the beginning of A4, but does this imply that it is very difficult to play with Human characters? I haven't been doing so badly with an all human group so far (fighter-type custom, rogue-type custom, shaman, sorcerer).

[ Friday, October 05, 2007 16:53: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Geneforge 3/4 mentioned in Top 100 Independent Games List in Geneforge Series
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #17
Start a new game in any recent Avernum. Check out "Cordelia's" dress slit!

Gotta thank Phil Foglio for that, I'd guess. After all, he did pen XXXenophile... :cool:

[ Thursday, October 04, 2007 06:56: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Avernum 4 Observations in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #17
quote:
Originally written by m4mitchell:

I dislike that items are often hidden by walls, especially important things, such as trapdoors. I really don't like the fact that spells no longer have letters attached to them - yes, I can still press 'a' in order to select the first spell, but it's difficult to know which letter to press when it comes to the later spells.
Of the things you wrote, this is the only one I agree with. My guess is that the editor Jeff uses is in 2D (like the editor for BoA) so he cannot see how bad this is when he's making the game.

I hope that the playtesters for A5 let Jeff know when a trapdoor is "hidden" like that (there's an important one in the very first town of A4, and that' just wrong). There is nothing good or realistic about having the POV hide an object.

Venatrix Avia, I also miss the ability to click on an object on the ground to examine it, rather than using the "pick up" option. I wonder how hard it would be for Jeff to add that back in.

[ Wednesday, October 03, 2007 10:19: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
no full-screen? in Geneforge Series
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #7
Don't give up!

I'm trying to get creative here and thinking you might consider running a virtual machine on Vista which can then run in a window. It sounds complicated but its really not.

Try the free download of Virtual PC 2007.

Or, perhaps there is a good Mac OS emulator that could also be run in a window, and you could download the Mac version! :)

I can't think of a reason why this would not work for you. It's not like Geneforge is a fast-paced graphic wonder like Bioshock. It should run fine without lag.

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamily/virtualpc/overview.mspx

IMAGE(http://pecan.cz/obr/blog/virtualpc/virtual-pc-04-ram.png)

[ Wednesday, October 03, 2007 07:48: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
I miss Exile. in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #14
quote:
Originally written by Washington Irving:

I have to vote for Exile too. I really like the simplicity of the 2D world.

For the record: I also liked the Ultima games,

I've heard this a few times now. Am I the only one who didn't stop playing Ultima after Ultima 5?

Ultimas 6 and 7 were my favorites (especially the Fujitsu FM-Towns version of 6 I owned with all voice acting), and improved the graphics dramatically.

I see the Geneforge engine as more like Ultima 7, and the old Avernum engine as Ultima 6. Exile more like Ultima 5, just without the black background/white characters look.

IMAGE(http://u6edit.sourceforge.net/images/sshot/ss5.png)

IMAGE(http://www.tdubel.com/pelit/epaviralliset/kuvat/exultx.jpg)

As long as Jeff keeps his colorful room descriptions a part of the game and keeps developing the Avernum world, I will keep gladly buying.

I'm a retro gamer, but I don't want Jeff's audience to be limited to hard-core retro gamers. I doubt he'd be able to support himself that way.

BUT...I'll agree its a fine line for Jeff to walk between keeping his faithful who were probably attracted to his games for the retro feel, and not turning off potential new buyers with a game thats "too" retro in its look and feel.

[ Wednesday, October 03, 2007 04:38: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Avernum 4 Observations in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #12
Well, those were mostly fan-made rips of other artist's work. If you look at the original Baldur's gate, there were about as many as in the Avernum series. Very well painted and beautiful, but the portraits were limited.

It's not like Jeff can just go in to the NWN:Vault and steal some portraits for the games he sells. :eek: :P

Besides, I'm guessing he wants some sense of consistency in the portraits that look like the work of Phil Foglio.
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Avernum 4 Observations in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #8
quote:
Originally written by Spidweb:

Avernum 5 has far fewer trivial monsters, both in the wild and in dungeons.

There are 6 new character graphics. 2 human, 2 nephil, 2 slith.

- Jeff Vogel

Great news, Jeff. Another reason why I love this board is the chance to read feedback from the programmer himself.

Now I'll just have to keep myself busy with the three games I bought until early 2008...!
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Avernum 4 Observations in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #5
quote:
Originally written by Randomizer:

A4 and A5 have two groups of quests. The job board which is based on the dispatcher of A3/E3 idea and there are quests that you get from talking to people. It's easy to miss them if you take the wrong dialog branch or find that you got one and didn't notice it while playing.
I liked that the job board can be empty, but then something (like where you've been on the map?) triggers more postings to it.

quote:
Jeff did do what he said about adding more character graphics especially for the nonhumans. Still it would be nice to have a few more. There's always A6.
It never occurred to me that it was probably pretty lame to have a full Slith party with two character portraits. Those Slith, they all look alike 'ya know. ;)

I guess Jeff's idea was that he needed a single portrait to match with a single model and have each one be unique, but really, a different colored loincloth and different portrait would be fine for me. Same goes for the Humans. Bring back all of the old portraits Jeff! :D

[ Monday, October 01, 2007 13:20: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Avernum 4 Observations in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #3
quote:
2)I also got used to Geneforge movement (one click where I want to go)that I liked it very much.
Wow, that is certainly my favorite aspect, and I forgot about it completely. I often click as far away as possible and grab for a sip of coffee while they move.

quote:
Beta testers aren't supposed to reveal details about the game before release. But I'm pretty sure Jeff has already stated here somewhere that there will be a few more player character models in A5.
Oops, on the beta thing. Good to hear about more player char. models though! And even if he doubles up the portraits on one model and just changes the color scheme I won't complain.
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Avernum 4 Observations in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #0
So I've been playing some Avernum 4 and reading about it here and have some feedback on what I like and dislike (not much on the latter).

I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts, especially if you've been testing Avernum 5.

For perspective, I owned Exile: Escape from the Pit, and bought/played through some of both of Nethergate: Res. and Blades of Avernum. Played through some of the other demos, and a GeneforgeIV CD is in the mail!

Likes:

Graphics - smoother graphic movement, battle animation, better textures and shading overall. I put extra weight on this aspect as it has improved the gameplay feel for me more than anything else. The dislikes I have (below) are small concerns since I like the new look so much.
User Interface - Aside from picking up items, everything seems to work much slicker and more intuitively. I like the Journal icon on the sidebar, for instance, more than the list of quests in the character screen in N:R.
Ambient sound effects: They might not have changed much, but I still like the various background effects. (I haven't heard that annoying "crying boy at the market" yet!)
Job Board: Very cool idea. Get quests in one location, too rather than running around.
Area descriptions: As usual, the Spiderweb Soft. descriptions of areas and rooms add much to the feel of the game. Perhaps my favorite aspect of the SS games. For some reason the Avernum IV conversations and descriptions seem better than ever.

Dislikes:

Less PC Character Models - I miss the cool looking female Slith wizard and additional human faces / bodies from Blades of Avernum. There is no tough-guy looking human fighter anymore, just the goatee'd dude who looks like a strong puff of wind could knock him over (yes, I know he's "wiry" - ha)
User interface - something about picking things up and/or clicking on items to pick up or identify seems to include an extra step compared to BoA and N:R. A lot of dragging and dropping into inventory. Maybe I've yet to figure out the trick.
Load Game: Double clicking load game doesn't load my games. It's a click, move, click checkmark extra step.
Graphics: Characters appear a bit too..."upright", especially when moving. I'd like to see more crouching, springing, striding and battle-ready stances.

Neutral:

Sounds - Just OK.
Icons - seem a bit dated compared to the rest of the engine, perhaps just because I've seen the same icons in N:R and BoA. Maybe its that the leather armor icon, for instance, doesn't seem to share the same depth of shading that the Geneforge engine provides.

Overall it looks great, and I'm hyped about Avernum 5. I have to wonder if any of my dislikes were addressed.

[ Monday, October 01, 2007 07:59: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Other RPGs in General
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #14
Neverwinter Nights Diamond Edition is a fantastic value if you've never played it.

Edit: I should have read the "30MB" part.

Hmmmm - how about these? (I think they're all free)

Sword of Fargoal Remake
Halls of the Dead - You'll need DosBox for this (Google Dosbox and try to get one of the GUIs for it as well that make using it even easier)

http://www.abandonia.com/games/306/FaeryTaleAdventure2-HallsoftheDead

Halls of the Dead (Faery Tale Adventure 2) - reminds me a bit of Spiderweb games, but different, of course.

IMAGE(http://www.abandonia.com/games/306/images/games/Faery%20Tale%20Adventure%202%20-%20Halls%20of%20the%20Dead5.png)

Some free Ultima remakes for the PC: http://reconstruction.voyd.net/index.php?event=project&typeKeyword=remakes

Dungeon Odyssey is a bit of casual fun: http://www.malfador.com/domain.html

Final Fantasy Dark Cloud: http://www.reloaded.org/game.php?GameID=247

[ Wednesday, September 26, 2007 12:59: Message edited by: Ming ]
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00
Insert Random Nethergate: Resurrection Questions Here in Nethergate
Warrior
Member # 10234
Profile #106
quote:
Originally written by Randomizer:

There should be one inner gate open with the Romans going to the north wing and the Celts allowed into the south wing. Also there is an area to the west around the center where the Eye is stored that should be explored.
Thanks Randomizer I'll try that! It must've just appeared like there was no way to enter - perhaps I was trying the Roman gate (I'm playing Celt).
Posts: 102 | Registered: Monday, September 3 2007 07:00

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