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Favorite Spiderweb Game in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #8
A2 is the best of the old Avernums, G4 is the best of the Geneforges (or demos, at least; it's the only one I've finished), and A5 is really good.

I called A2 my favorite, although it's really neck and neck with Nethergate, and I think in a few years when nostalgia has some time to balance A5 may pull even.

—Alorael, who still doesn't think Blades belongs in these comparisons. They're great scenario creation kits and solid game engines. The scenarios can be compared individually to individual games, but the entire Blades catalogues against Spiderweb's games is an apples to orchards comparison.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
You saw this thread coming!!! in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #29
The A2 music is wrong for the battle picture but just right for Dark Waters. Have I mentioned before how much I like chapter 2? A lot. A4's music bothers him, probably because it's a section from a larger piece but not the first section. If Jeff could get Bjorn Lynne music for his games maybe music wouldn't be such a bad thing.

—Alorael, who also has to say that after more listening he likes G1's intro a lot. He can't explain why, but it works well for Geneforge.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
A3 Tower of Magi Help in The Avernum Trilogy
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #1
There is no Carrie to be found. Bernard is doomed to eternal sorrow.

—Alorael, who likes that touch in the ToM. It's one of Jeff's little details that make the games so good.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
You saw this thread coming!!! in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #14
I like A2's intro, but Nethergate wins.

—Alorael, who would like a full-length piece based on that. With bagpipes. Seriously.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Locking in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #188
I've already addressed complexity. Go back up and read it. Although it's frequently discussed informally when evolution comes up, it's not a scientific term. That's why Thuryl can't professionally talk about complexity. It has no meaning.

—Alorael, who agrees that things are informally more complex thanks to evolution. Keep in mind, though, that blue-green algae is just as highly evolved as dolphins. Clearly evolution doesn't necessarily lead to complexity, although it can.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
[censored]! in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #5
If the bar has a problem, it has the right to throw anyone out. If the bar doesn't have a problem, why is the town trying to deal with it? If the patrons are a problem outside the bar, the police can always haul them in for disturbing the peace. If the peace is not disturbed, I don't understand the problem.

—Alorael, who can only imagine that some bar patrons complained that the bars are rowdy. The obvious solution, although apparently not obvious enough, is to either find another bar or drink at home. Honestly, why go to a bar if you don't like other people?
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Locking in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #178
I frequently post in a self-consciously pretentious manner in order to cultivate my reputation as an insufferable bringer of petty pedantry. You don't think any less of me for it, do you?

—Alorael, who actually thinks Excalibur's comments here are quite reasonable. Nobody has been converted in one of these debates yet. They're exercises in futile argument. That doesn't make them any less fun, though, depending on your value of fun (see also: specified complexity, information, random).
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Locking in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #169
quote:
Originally written by Stillness:

Thuryl, use your definition of complexity. You’re more qualified than me. I’m sure that you think dolphins are more complex than blue-green algae and that the latter is more ancient than the former. That is the general pattern right. I’m fairly sure that’s basic and accepted Neo-Darwinistic teaching – evolution doesn’t have to yield more complexity, but over billions of years it has. Show me the logic.
Specified complexity, which has yet to be rigorously defined, must be a subset of complexity. Complexity is also not rigorously defined, though, because it really has no place in evolution. It just isn't important that life becomes more or less complex, whatever that means.

Common descent only requires that various species descended from common ancestral species, which in turn descended from more remote ancestral species all the way back to the origin of life.

Let's move back to something simpler. If cells had no conservation and repair mechanisms for their DNA, they would mutate a lot. Leaving aside all questions of whether these mutations would be survivable, this random process could eventually lead to the production of any arbitrary DNA sequence.

If you accept this premise, then you must concede that common descent and evolution are possible. Not plausible, not true, but possible. Also, because this process can create any DNA sequence, information theory and complexity arguments are largely irrelevant. On a genetic level, we're talking about C, A, T, and G in varying numbers and arrangements. That's all.

—Alorael, who fully realizes that this argument does not strongly support evolution. It's a step, though, and he's really not sure if you agree with it or not.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
How continuous is the trilogy's story in The Avernum Trilogy
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #14
A1-3 use the same engine with a few minor modifications, so if you can get used to A3 you can almost certainly get used to A1. The big changes in how the game works are the introduction of the very useful quest log in A2 and a major overhaul of how damage works and how much information item descriptions give you in A3.

—Alorael, who for the record likes knowing what every item does in A3 but liked damage levels in A1-2 more.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
How continuous is the trilogy's story in The Avernum Trilogy
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #8
A1 has the most thorough introduction to the world of Avernum and to the caves in particular, but the plot of the series only gets underway in the later part of the game. A2 is great and keeps things moving. A3 actually stands alone quite well, as you see relatively few old places and old faces. A4 and A5 are, like the rest, fine on their own. I think they actually require having played the original trilogy even less, but it's nice to know all the background.

—Alorael, who thinks it's important to play through at least the demo of A1 to get a sense of the original way the caves work. After that it makes sense to play in order, but it's not really necessary. A2 is so good you should play it either after A1 or after the A1 demo. After that, keep playing however you want, keeping in mind that all things being equal going through the plot sequentially adds a bit.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Locking in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #104
quote:
Originally written by Synergy:

quote:
Originally written by Alorael:

Life is thriving, yes, but it thrives despite organisms being in constant competition.
FYT.

Any organism that exists, exists because it is operating on a principle of incredible overall internal collaboration and unity. When we choose to apply this principle more fully at an even higher scale of life, "externally," we will see life that thrives exponentially more than it manages to under a competitive scheme.

We? I don't know about you, but I don't have any control over the competition of anyone but myself. (Although actually I think I do know enough about you to believe that you'll suggest I do have such control. The world is what I make of it. Well, different beliefs.)

quote:
In this relativistic universe, there are many levels and layers of "truth." Science describes many "truths" at one level, and these are many and wondrous indeed. There are also higher truths which can effectively render them no longer determinant. Jesus broke the "laws" of physics habitually. He was operating by a higher law than what science frequently submits to.
You know religion isn't going to sway anyone here. I don't believe that Jesus broke any laws of physics. And I'm not even an atheist! I'm just not a Christian of any kind.

quote:
One man's "gobbledygook" is another's sacred truth. There would be less killing in this world, figuratively and literally, if there were more honoring of our differences, and trusting in our ability to find our truth, rather than the need to exert one's rightness, and the certainty of an absolute truth for all. I will continue to endeavor to do so.
I respect your right to your sacred truth, but it is not objective truth (or my subjective truth, if you prefer) and I will not live my life by it. I'm very much getting a science wars feeling from all this, though.

—Alorael, who would like to know when matter spontaneously appeared in your body. He won't believe you, in all honesty, but he's curious about what you think happened.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Locking in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #95
I was about to start typing up a long response to Synergy's New Age gobbledygook, but it's not worth it. We're not going to agree. He's going to live in his land of semi-anti-solipsistic relativism and I'm going to live in my rational, scientific world. In fact, according to my understanding, that's perfectly fine and my choice, although it's a regrettable one.

But ignorance of science is not something I can let slide. Life is thriving, yes, but it thrives because organisms are in constant competition. Many organisms are not thriving; that's natural selection. That's what Thuryl said.

You're also missing Thuryl's point about cancer and the immune system. Cancer is natural selection: a cell that can reproduce rapidly and infinitely produces more infinitely rapidly producing cells. That's the phenomenon of cancer. It's really no different from bacteria doing it in a flask except for the consequences to the host.

—Alorael, who doesn't agree so much with Thuryl about bodies being competition-based. Most systems are regulated enough thatthey can't really be said to be competition at the level of single-celled sub-organisms. White blood cells that don't recognize an antigen die, but not because they fail to compete. The feedback is positive, not negative, in the immune system loop.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Why did Starman Get Banned? in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #21
quote:
Originally written by Arancaytar:

It would be nearly correct if it were Esperanto, but the imperative gets a u, not an a.

This way you're saying "Alive, the Drayks", etc.

And it's actually correct in Spanish if you ignore subject-article-verb agreement.

—Alorael, who is a bit amused by his brain's processing. Viva goes with la, check. La does not go with Drayks! Fix the la! But then he missed the recursion to recheck the viva.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
What is .sit? in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #17
With cats, sit is not enough. You need sudo.

—Alorael, who prefers to finish the sentence with "going down in flames." That's less ambiguous in one way but more so in more appropriate ways. Yes, more appropriate in more ways than one, too.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Why did Starman Get Banned? in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #8
I'm still bothered by the signature's errors. Fix it or remove it. Actually, why not do both?

—Alorael, who has a few more little pointers: "los" is the masculine and mixed plural definite article in Spanish, which is what you should be using instead of "la" in most cases. Khyryk is a name, and therefore the "la" should be removed. You don't say, "Long live the Eric!"
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
What is .sit? in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #15
The wonderful thing about Polaris is that it's immortal. It doesn't matter how many times it goes down, it always gets right back up and does what it does best.

—Alorael, who has a sneaking suspicion that what it does best is nothing, perhaps even in multiple senses of the word.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Locking in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #38
PPPS: Thanks, but did we really need to know that? Your post didn't actually add anything to the thread.

—Alorael, who has seen spontaneous evolution debates crop up among ecologists as well, but it's more interesting to see spontaneous evolution appear among the microbiologists. You should see the guys with four arms!
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Weird creations??? in Geneforge 4: Rebellion
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #34
pleaselikeme All areas forget your crimes
showmeall All characters appear on automap
shieldsup Bless party
dontshowmeall Deactivate showmeall code
whereami Display location coordinates
iamweak Extra experience
iampoor Extra money
exitzone Go to world map
healmenow Heal party
giveasnack Main character gets cake
rechargeme Recharge essence and energy
clearthisarea Turn current area green on world map
[Edit: Spa cing.]

—Alorael, who also likes the xianskull cheat. That one doesn't work without a little bit of trial and error, some luck, and very thorough exploration, though.

[ Tuesday, January 08, 2008 14:11: Message edited by: Table Whisperer ]
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
roman craft circle in Nethergate
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #9
I like the curse. Not having it, of course, but it adds to the game.

—Alorael, who also gives it credit for being the one major plot-related sequence that has no parallel for the other side. Celts get all the cool stuff.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
World building poll in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #68
The survivors of Magellan's great voyage in Möbius-land would be quite surprised to discover that in addition to having strange switches in handedness, all the writing left at home would be backwards. They'd either have to learn to read and write like Leonardo da Vinci or they'd have to reverse or repeat their voyage.

—Alorael, who now must consider a world in which the distance between two points is dependent on the path taken so that the straight line may in fact be longer. Path integration would be a nightmare. Cartography might become immensely lucrative and secretive. A sense of direction could easily steer you wrong.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
What is .sit? in General
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #12
Because conversations don't always end when the original topic has been exhausted?

—Alorael, who wonders why anyone talks on Spiderweb at all. It must be some mysterious social urge that drives otherwise ordinary (sort of) people (mostly) to an internet forum where they can flee from fluffy turtles and engage in odd cult-like behavior.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00

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