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  • core_pfield_7
    Being objectively right about absolutely everything.
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  1. In case anyone doesn't have it yet, and does have MCC installed, going in with the intention of ploughing through the Halo 3 campaign and hopefully earning some sort of achievement dealt me one rather sooner than anticipated: I immediately popped the achievement for playing Halo 3 on the 25th of any month, which did indeed work for the 500 point stamp card. So that was convenient!
  2. Yeah, Puckoon is brilliant. Even my dad, with his deep antipathy towards books, loves it.
  3. Yep, same here — popped a few Fable achievements but it didn't register.
  4. The only problem highlighted there is that Virtua Tennis 1 & 2 are still the best tennis games around
  5. I mean, it's not exactly a mystery. IBM sell their hardware for the sake of selling hardware. Valve sell hardware for the sake of locking people into their marketplace. Profit margins on said hardware are therefore of rather different priority; 'idealism' and 'the greater good' has nothing to do with it.
  6. Fair enough, it's hard to know where it's coming from without knowing the person using it! When I was at school the term was thrown around in exactly the same way as gaylord, i.e. as a slur against anyess "masculine" boys and against those few brave enough to be out, so I tend to be wary of it.
  7. Glad to see lightly homophobic humour still prevails in the UK psyche, I guess?
  8. As someone who does vote with their wallet, and hasn't bought from ActiBlizzard for years thanks to their more generally shitty business practices, I am aware that my actions are negligible: short of employee-organised large-scale boycotts, individual consumer actions have only a minor impact on the company. However, as someone who works outside of the industry, it's the only thing close to a meaningful impact I can have, so it's what I'll do. As for the concern for "the impact my buying some other game instead of ActiBlizzard's will have on their staff", I don't consider that a reasonable concern. Not least because they have repeatedly demonstrated that their games being wildly successful has no effect on their choice to retain or fire staff, but even beyond that if the choice is between choosing to support a toxic workplace in the hope they continue to keep people employed, or supporting a less toxic studio that doesn't in fact abuse their staff, I don't find that a particularly morally challenging one. Or, to put it in slighly longer-winded and less polite terms, this tweet (and following thread) more or less matches my perspective on it:
  9. Ha, fair enough — I don't have that problem, but rather the opposite: if I start reading a book I can't listen to a different audiobook, as I can't switch focus between stories at will: I end up having to get the same audiobook and book if I want to listen to an audiobook and also read, which isn't the cheapest way to enjoy a story! So, a selection of highlights; none of these are particularly obscure, so apologies if you've already read them, but I wanted to give a bit of a spread of styles (and have limited this to books where I've enjoyed the audiobook versions specifically; I know that a bad narrator can ruin the best of books): Best Served Cold by Joe Abercrombie is a grim, if darkly humorous little bit of low fantasy. It's a standalone novel in a larger universe; the First Law trilogy would be the normal starting point for his books, but, well, that's a trilogy, and you favoured standalone works! Abercrombie's a good writer, and this is a capably narrated version of an enjoyable, bleak bit of fantasy. The Forgotten Beasts of Eld by Patricia A. McKillip. Very short, I'm afraid — as are all of McKillip's books — and you'll either love or loathe her dreamy, light-touch approach to prose and story, but I adore her work, and this is a very accurate reflection of her style, so makes a good taster to figure out if you like her work or not. I also really like Dina Perlman as a narrator, though I know she's very divisive. A divisive author and a divisive reader: listening to the sample first would probably be a good idea! The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin. Okay, so this is the first entry in a trilogy, and it's science-fantasy rather than pure fantasy, but it's absolutely brilliant. The best bit of genre fiction I've read that was written in the past decade, to be sure. I also really like the narrator.
  10. The issues aren't ones of quality, they're inherent in using a trackpad as a substitute for not-a-trackpad; there's not really any way around them. They're very versatile, and their configurability is great (stuff like the radial menus is particularly neat), but even with haptics, even with virtual trackball modes, a tiny patch of rubberised plastic is never going to be quite as tactile, quite as immediately scalable from full-screen to per-pixel motion as a mouse/trackball. Again, it's a very sensible solution — I used mine for years when I had my PC hooked up to a TV, and it was almost as good as using a mouse at a desk. But there are inherent downsides to it, and it's worth going in expecting them rather than getting frustrated because you find it's not quite ideal for e.g. frenetic real-time strategy games. Similarly, while keyboard-to-stick/trackpad works, it can feel a bit weird when playing games which don't support analogue motion, particularly 3D action games; keyboard-only games can feel a bit clunky when mapped to an analogue stick, as you automatically expect to get subtlety of motion that just isn't there. That's only really an issue for older PC games, however, as most modern ones offer joypad support inherently. Again, not a flaw of the controller, just a limitation of digital-only controls mapped to a controller oriented towards analogue motions. And one that will be somewhat mitigated with the (somewhat oddly placed) joypad being an option. (At least, again, with the twin sticks you won't have to worry about modern games mapping weirdly from an expected 360/Dual Shock style controller to a one-joystick controller)
  11. As someone who owns and likes the Steam Controller (and was sad to see it discontinued), I would add the caveat that any praise of its touch control needs to include the word "but". As in "it offers great cursor control, but with either reduced speed or precision"; and "it has a good stab at stimulating an analogue stick, but with unreliable centring". It's definitely the best combined solution, and its haptics are lovely, but it's always slightly compromised. (I do think it will benefit from being paired with two analogue sticks this time around, though)
  12. I'm not too concerned about the quality of the four games (in that I expect curios, and the occasional diamond in the rough rather than a schedule of all killer, no filler; and am largely interested in the device for my own homebrew purposes), but the description of the Playdate's actual build quality — particularly the overly clicky d-pad and buttons — is disappointing. That is making me think twice about getting one.
  13. Re: the discussion around @Ry 's question: I'd also say that it's entirely likely that there are/were people who have spoken up, but ultimately had no effect as the business itself took no meaningful action (and/or reprimanded the complainant instead). Like, I've had to report, and support a report of sexual harassment at a workplace, but the reason that then had an impact is that said workplace suspended the harasser, investigated him, and then fired him. If, instead, they'd given him a rap on the knuckles then passively aggressively put me and the victim into some sort of "teamwork and mindfulness" course or similar, then the intervention would have no meaningful impact bar emboldening the perpetrator. If the culture is terrible, it doesn't matter how many "good guys" there are. Notably, the above was at a company in the stereotypically blokey world of civil engineering, where there were a whole two women in our branch of ~30 employees. If they could manage to deal with sexual harassment effectively, it only highlights how shameful Acti/Ubi's corporate cultures are.
  14. No, it's very much still there - you can see it on Schreier's account, plus if it were deleted it would disappear from Moosegrinder's post; that's a live view of the tweets, not a screenshot.
  15. Christ. They were already on my no-buy list for the more publicly visible problems with their working culture, but reading those accounts makes me feel sick. Just horrendous stuff.
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