All posts for the month September, 2016

It was only a matter of time before Robert discovered Nuka World and upset gorilla lovers everywhere:

Having established his new Raider settlement, Robert took the next logical step, which was to destroy Sanctuary and turn the most annoying NPCs into Soylent Green. Yes, even Preston:

In both videos, observe Robert’s excellent bowling ball cannon technique. Warning: his beloved alien companion dies in the second one but is lovingly memorialized, along with the gorilla.

I finished Deus Ex without killing anybody (bosses are people, too.)

The ending I got, I didn’t like. I wonder how much it can be changed. I don’t have any strategic save slots. Oh well.

Apparently my version of the game came with some standalone DLC stories? I guess I can try those out now.

Oh yeah, we’re also being sued for foreclosure. We got the summons today. His and hers.

In spite of my best efforts to capture the event for science, Microsoft ninja’d Win 10 Anniversary onto my work-at-home computer in the wee hours of the morning.

I was braced for misbehavior and mischief, but so far, things seem to be functional. The same thing happened to my gaming machine, which has been operating perfectly since the update. On neither computer have I experienced any of the terrible crimes so often reported on the intarweb. My privacy settings remained unchanged. Nothing blew up. Microsoft sent me a message to the effect that Skype was ready to use, but it won’t do anything until I activate it. Cortana is not in my face. The dreaded ad spam people cry about never happened.

Even more interesting: this is an upgrade of an upgrade. I originally had Win 8.1 on here. Win 10 was installed over it. Then Anniversary was installed over that. This is a perfect recipe for bugginess and slowdown, but that isn’t going on. Maybe I missed a step.

In completely related news: my spirit mage in Titan Quest is now lvl 25 and no longer seems utterly useless. She makes decent money and has managed to find or buy some nice doodads. I don’t mean to imply that she’s getting good drops. She has a whole transfer stash full of crap for melee and archer classes but almost nothing for a mage — nothing that dropped for free anyway. I’ve had to craft every performance increase from completed charms and essences.

The upper half of my skill tree is still untouched, as leveling in Titan Quest is much slower than in D3. Adding points to the skills in the lower half is getting me by nicely for now. I haven’t done anything with my secondary Dream mastery. I doubt that I’ll even get to it by the end of this playthrough in Normal difficulty. Actually, I doubt that most of the upper half of the Spirit tree will get any meaningful attention.

Mostly, I’m just playing to see the new locations. Presently, I’m in Thebes and am making a tour of the nearby Valley of the Kings. Whether this is geographically accurate in the real world, I don’t know. Probably no more than in Serious Sam. This troubles me not a whit. I’m just enjoying the casual nature of everything. I will note that the monsters are slightly more aggressive now. They’re also attacking in multiple species groups, so I’m having to be a little more alert. I wonder what happens at serious level tiers and difficulties?

In the News Nobody Cares About department, Rhykker has revisited the predictions he made in his Season 7 PTR (public test realm) video, concluding that his forecasts about top solo Greater Rift builds were eerily accurate with occasional upsets.

Not surprisingly, Europe is dominating the field of highest rift clears, with Asia coming in second and North America bringing up the rear. I imagine this is because Europeans tend to play old games forever while Americans always go to the next big thing. As for Asia – who knows why they do what they do? Who can plumb the depths of their inscrutability? They’re almost as mysterious as Canada.

Witch doctors are, of course, very strong, but are outpaced by monks. In fact, monks are presently the “third best” class across the leaderboards, but they’re squeezed out of the number 2 spot by, of all things, Legacy of Nightmare bombardment crusdaders.

At number one globally . . . are you believing this? . . . is the wizard. And this is for the second season in a row. The Firebird/Archon meta still dominates in spite of Blizzard’s devastating (and proper) nerf to the ridiculously OP twister-spam exploit.

I personally don’t care for Archon, whether used with the Vyr or Firebird set, but who knew three years ago that the stepchild wizard would become D3’s champeen toon? What a world in which we live in, in which.

Reality check: none of this matters unless you’re one of those career mouthbreathers who play a 2012 game sixteen hours a day and get your mother to change your diapers.


The thoughts are late because I waited until last night to see it. Starz had it on all their channels at the same time, which was rather unusual, and I prefer DirecTV’s HD broadcasts to sitting in theaters.

I must say that I was taken completely by surprise. I expected the usual Abrams excessive effects and forced nostalgia. Some of that was present, but mostly the effects were in correct proportion to the drama and the nostalgia was usually subtle and appropriate. If I didn’t know better, I would say that JJ is developing a sense of taste.

The old characters were sort of shockingly old, but I did the math and realized that Episode IV was made almost forty years ago, so yes: they really are that age. Nonetheless, the movie sold the notion that even though Han Solo is a geezer, he’s still Han Solo and still doing exactly the same things he did in days of yore. Leia, on the other hand — well, I don’t think she’ll be wearing the slave bikini any time soon. I guess wookies age differently because Chewy was . . . erm, still Peter Mayhew in a costume (which did not look as convincing as muppet’s masterpiece).

I also did not expect to like the new characters as much as I did. Let me go ahead and get Kylo Ren out of the way first. Sorry, but this guy just didn’t work for me. The concept and identity weren’t presented well, and Adam Driver wasn’t able to sell Ren’s dark side or his conflict with the light. He reminded me of that neighbor kid who went off to college and became a disappointment, but the family is still working on him. The new “Luke” — Daisy Ridley as Rey — was very good. I think they made the right choice there. The big surprise was John Boyega as Finn. I did not expect to care about this character, but I did — a lot more than Poe (a.k.a. the new “Han” or really a new Han/Luke hybrid of some kind). I think Driver may be able to do better work with Ren in succeeding episodes, and let’s be fair: Oscar Isaac’s Poe was not very deep and had a lot of dumb lines — I would say that Isaac did a good job with what he had. I think Finn will be revived and we’ll get to see more excellent work from Boyega. I expect big things from Miss Daisy as the series progresses.

Obligatory notice of BB-8: aww, so cute — will sell a lot of Pez dispensers.

The writing, to me, was nicely done. The plot made sense in most places, and I don’t really care that much about Star Wars “lore,” so I wasn’t cognizant of any horrible sins in that department. The music was excellent, of course.

I think the whole thing shapes up as a successful reclamation of the Star Wars franchise, now that it’s out of the hands of the Episodes I-III quacks. Some things could have been better: (1) I wasn’t really impressed by either the First Order or the Resistance. Neither had the definitive Saturday matinee identities of the Empire and the Rebellion. (2) Too many “incidental” resuscitations were made of old Star Wars alien types and scenes. The best example is the final X-Wing assault on the improved Death Star, which was almost a remake of the original, right down to the droopy faced alien and the fat-guy-friend-of-George-Lucas. (3) The villains weren’t really too dire, and the threats weren’t very threatening, even though it was clear that The Force Awakens is an intentional homage to A New Hope (you might even say a remake, as so many scenes and events were nearly identical to those in the first movie). At least George Lucas sort of believed in his hokey Empire, whereas I never get that sense from Abrams’ First Order.

But otherwise, our young Abrams does a surprisingly good job with a massive responsibility. I was expecting to hear millions of voices suddenly cry out that they were being asploded in a Transformer movie — or worse, that they were stuck in a new Star Trek movie — but it may be that JJ has grown up and the Force is strong in this one. The new episode isn’t perfect, but I think the series is moving in the right direction. I’m anxious to see what Luke does with Rey, and speaking of Luke: that may be the best ending scene in any movie ever. Is old Luke cool or WHAT?

I bought the boxed disc copy, I think haven’t installed a game like that since Baldur’s Gate – 7 DVDs and after over an hour of installing I still can’t play the damn game, the launcher downloads some more 10 gigabytes.


why did I buy this game anyway?