hook's recent activity

  1. Comment on Who is "John Smith" in your country? in ~talk

    hook
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    In Slovenia it is "Janez Novak". Novak is a common surname for people who were new to the community, and Janez is John. I guess you could translate that to John Newbie.

    In Slovenia it is "Janez Novak". Novak is a common surname for people who were new to the community, and Janez is John.

    I guess you could translate that to John Newbie.

    14 votes
  2. Comment on What games have you been playing, and what's your opinion on them? in ~games

    hook
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    I’ve been eyeing Starlink: Battle for Atlas for quite some time, but didn’t get it earlier because 1) price (esp. the toys for life version, which if you want all can take you back 300€), and 2)...

    I’ve been eyeing Starlink: Battle for Atlas for quite some time, but didn’t get it earlier because 1) price (esp. the toys for life version, which if you want all can take you back 300€), and 2) there were some negative reviews in the line of “good, but repetitive gameplay”, “weak story, characters are not memorable, StarFox saves it all” etc.

    Now it was highly discounted on the Switch eShop, I took the plunge and got the version with the first (of two) DLC pack for 30€ …and boy, was I in for a good surprise! I had a hard time putting it down. In 10 days I clocked in 35+ hours and seriously had to force myself today to put it down and save it to savour it more a bit later.

    Not only do I like how the game plays – the controls are tight; there is a lot of customisability both for the same (paintjobs) of it and functional – but also the content. The story starts meh, but then is more than OK – let’s be honest, space shooter games rarely have a fantastic and groundbreaking story. But I was also very pleasantly surprised by the characters. Sure, no-one pops up as iconic, and whom you play as does not change the progress of the game, but it does change the dialogue, which is a nice touch. The pilots are quite varied in skills and the ships as well (although with mods you can beef up any ship really well) and I haven’t even played as StarFox, as I’m saving him for his own missions. Around 20h in, I got the second DLC pack (discounted for 20€) which includes just the rest of the pilots and weapons – that’s how much I like the game!

    What I’m currently doing is playing every ship with the pilot that owns it (e.g. Shaid in Nadir) to level them at least to the point where their mentor skills are maxed out. So far I’m on my 6^th^ ship+pilot combo (out of 8 available digitally) and they all have their pros and cons. Can’t say any is overpowered or particularly more fun than the others. I think the pilots are so varied that anyone can find someone they like more and although I share the dislike of Levi’s personality (both with many gamers and in-game fighters), I like it that they included a directly dislikable character in the roster – spices things up :)

    Sure, the game is not perfect and there could be more variations in quests (most are fetch, kill, or scan quests) and enemies, but I honestly don’t mind the grind. It gives it a somewhat resource management strategy vibe that is kinda like a ultra-light-4X game.

    The look, sound (use headphones!) and feel of the environments is really good as well. I miss some more interaction between the fauna and more difference between the day and night cycle, but that’s nit-picking already, I guess.

    Oh, and I finished the main story of Super Mario Odyssey – great game, loads of polish, will happily continue playing its post-game content. (Yeah, Starlink left such a good impression, that I mention Mario in passing.)

    Whew, had to get that off my chest. I guess this week I’ll pick up something more relaxing, perhaps BotW, TumbleSeed, ARMS, Hollow Knight.

    2 votes
  3. Comment on Nintendo Switch - Indie World Showcase - 8.19.2019 in ~games

    hook
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    For reference, the list of all games announced in it is: Risk of Rain 2 (Hopoo Games, Gearbox Publishing) — Summer 2019 Eastward (Pixpil, Chucklefish Games) — Early 2020 Freedom Finger (Wide Right...

    For reference, the list of all games announced in it is:

    • Risk of Rain 2 (Hopoo Games, Gearbox Publishing) — Summer 2019
    • Eastward (Pixpil, Chucklefish Games) — Early 2020
    • Freedom Finger (Wide Right Interactive) — Sept. 27, 2019
    • Röki (Polygon Treehouse, United Label) — Winter 2019
    • Torchlight II (Panic Button/Runic Games, Perfect World Entertainment) — Sept. 3, 2019
    • Skater XL (Easy Day Studios Pty Ltd) — 2020
    • Youropa (frecle) — 2019
    • SUPERHOT (Superhot Team) — Today
    • Dungeon Defenders Awakened (Chromatic Games) — Feb. 2020
    • The Touryst (Shin’en) — November
    • Skellboy (Umaiki Games, Fabraz) — Dec. 3, 2019
    • EarthNight (Cleaversoft) — 2019
    • Hotline Miami Collection (Dennaton Games, Devolver Digital) — Today
    • Blasphemous (Team17) – Sept. 10, 2019
    • Close to the Sun (Wired Productions) – 2019
    • Cat Quest II (PQube Limited) – Fall 2019
    • Spiritfarer (Thunder Lotus) – Spring 2020
    • Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince (Modus Games)
    • Creature in the Well (Flight School Studio) – Sept. 6
    • One Finger Death Punch 2 (Silver Dollar Games) – Dec. 2
    • Best Friend Forever (Alliance) – Feb. 14, 2020
    • PHOGS! (Coatsink) – Early 2020
    • WHAT THE GOLF? (Triband) – Winter 2019
    • KINE (Chump Squad) – 2019
    • HYPERCHARGE: Unboxed (Digital Cyber Cherries) – Winter 2019
    • Northgard (Shiro Games) – Sept. 26, 2019
    • Sparklite (Merge Games) – Fall 2019
    • Munchkin: Quacked Quest (Asmodee Digital) – Fall 2019
    • Ori and the Blind Forest (Moon Games, Xbox Game Studios) — Sept. 27, 2019
    6 votes
  4. Comment on Nintendo Switch - Indie World Showcase - 8.19.2019 in ~games

    hook
    (edited )
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    I’m mostly looking forward to: Ori and the Blind Forest The Touryst SuperHot Creature in the Well I’m cautiously optimistic about: Youropa Röki

    I’m mostly looking forward to:

    • Ori and the Blind Forest
    • The Touryst
    • SuperHot
    • Creature in the Well

    I’m cautiously optimistic about:

    • Youropa
    • Röki
    2 votes
  5. Comment on What games have you been playing, and what's your opinion on them? in ~games

    hook
    Link Parent
    So Octopath gets better afterwards? I played the demo with all the characters (except one, I think) to its max, but was let down. I found it a good turn-based JRPG, but not as great as they hyped...

    So Octopath gets better afterwards? I played the demo with all the characters (except one, I think) to its max, but was let down. I found it a good turn-based JRPG, but not as great as they hyped it up to be. In any case the fact that the party characters don’t interact much, for me is the biggest missed opportunity and mostly likely won’t buy it.

    For the turn-based JRPG fix, I’m waiting for Dragon Quest XI S (the definitive edition on Switch). Apart from being the series that defined this genre, I really dig that they offer both modern 3D and retro 2D gameplay options, as well as a way to play (in 2D only I think) through some quests in previous DQ worlds.

    2 votes
  6. Comment on What games have you been playing, and what's your opinion on them? in ~games

    hook
    Link Parent
    I am currently waiting for my Flip Grip to arrive to play Zaccaria Pinball (and Downwell) in TATE mode, but also to play some other shoot’em’ups. I haven’t installed any proper ones, but have...

    I am currently waiting for my Flip Grip to arrive to play Zaccaria Pinball (and Downwell) in TATE mode, but also to play some other shoot’em’ups.

    I haven’t installed any proper ones, but have several on my wishlist from this Starter's Guide to Shmups on Switch and AzorMX’ series of posts on Greatest Shmup of Them All. I warmly recommend both resources, if you are looking for a good overview.

    1 vote
  7. Comment on What games have you been playing, and what's your opinion on them? in ~games

    hook
    Link Parent
    I dunno, I found the accents quite enjoyable. In fact, it always struck me a bit odd that all the people in a vast world spoke not only the same language, but also the same accent. I haven't paid...

    I dunno, I found the accents quite enjoyable. In fact, it always struck me a bit odd that all the people in a vast world spoke not only the same language, but also the same accent.

    I haven't paid too much attention, but AFAIA the accents in XC2 should be consistent with where the character came from - e.g. all Gormotti have the same heavy accent. I find that a really nice touch.

  8. Comment on What games have you been playing, and what's your opinion on them? in ~games

    hook
    Link Parent
    Fair enough. I see benefits of both ways, just wondering what the plan is :)

    Fair enough. I see benefits of both ways, just wondering what the plan is :)

    2 votes
  9. Comment on What games have you been playing, and what's your opinion on them? in ~games

    hook
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    I have a logistical question on how does this compare to the previous such topic: https://tildes.net/~games/ffw/what_games_have_you_been_playing_lately Are we doing these in (quasi-)regular...

    I have a logistical question on how does this compare to the previous such topic:
    https://tildes.net/~games/ffw/what_games_have_you_been_playing_lately

    Are we doing these in (quasi-)regular intervals by having weekly or monthly threads, or do we want one giant thread for all eternity?

    1 vote
  10. Comment on Why Does Celeste Feel So Good to Play? | Game Maker's Toolkit in ~games.game_design

    hook
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    Well, that is something I can get behind then. Thanks for the insight. I have no idea how the reviews I saw emphasized these bits so much, but I'm happy I saw the video and your comments now. It...

    Well, that is something I can get behind then. Thanks for the insight.

    I have no idea how the reviews I saw emphasized these bits so much, but I'm happy I saw the video and your comments now. It will have to wait that I finish other platformers and metroidvanias I already have though (at least Hollow Knight, Shantae, Dandara, and Shovel Knight, which I all already started).

    2 votes
  11. Comment on Why Does Celeste Feel So Good to Play? | Game Maker's Toolkit in ~games.game_design

    hook
    Link Parent
    That is good to know. Thanks. So fair I mostly heard it being compared to Meat Boy and praised regarding its story (fighting depression, IIRC), neither of which compelled me. Meat Boy I played...

    That is good to know. Thanks.

    So fair I mostly heard it being compared to Meat Boy and praised regarding its story (fighting depression, IIRC), neither of which compelled me.

    Meat Boy I played when it was still a Flash game and didn't like it really. But this video showed Celeste differs in some of the parts that I didn't like in Meat Boy.

    The story, I'm still unsure of though.

    1 vote
  12. Comment on Why Does Celeste Feel So Good to Play? | Game Maker's Toolkit in ~games.game_design

    hook
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    That was very interesting and changed my opinion of Celeste - I might just buy it. Would love to see the same done with Hollow Knight.

    That was very interesting and changed my opinion of Celeste - I might just buy it. Would love to see the same done with Hollow Knight.

    3 votes
  13. Comment on Wolfmother - Joker and the Thief in ~music

    hook
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    A similar, if not worse, letdown for me were the Horrors. Their demo was absolutely amazing (e.g. I adored Count in Fives, but the album(s) - meh.

    A similar, if not worse, letdown for me were the Horrors. Their demo was absolutely amazing (e.g. I adored Count in Fives, but the album(s) - meh.

    1 vote
  14. Comment on Yabby You and King Tubby - Walls Of Jerusalem in ~music

    hook
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    Great to see King Tubby still lay down discs. A legend equal to “Scratch” himself.

    Great to see King Tubby still lay down discs. A legend equal to “Scratch” himself.

    2 votes
  15. Comment on Do you have a personal website/blog? in ~comp

    hook
    Link Parent
    Glad it proved useful 😀

    Glad it proved useful 😀

    1 vote
  16. Comment on What games have you been playing lately? in ~games

    hook
    (edited )
    Link
    I just finished: Sky Peace – the concept is very simple: fast-paced vertical flying game, where you avoid enemies and collect coins etc. The graphics are exactly what you would expect of this type...

    I just finished:

    • Sky Peace – the concept is very simple: fast-paced vertical flying game, where you avoid enemies and collect coins etc. The graphics are exactly what you would expect of this type of game in the 1990’s with a pretty catchy soundtrack. The controls are limited, as you only have nine positions (i.e. 3x3 square), but are very tight. There is no story and there are only 10 stages, which took me well under an hour to finish, but for the laughable 0,99 €, it is well worth the money. Replayability comes mostly in trying to get a better rank (from C to SS) and gaining achievements. It actually is a really good game for short play sessions, when you just need something simple.

    What I recently picked up again (but haven’t mentioned in the previous comment yet):

    • Super Mario Odyssey – I was previously stuck with the Luncheon kingdom’s boss, but decided to tackle it again and am now making progress again. I also learnt some moves better, while I am still not really good at it. I don’t know if I suck at 3D platforming in general (I’m good at 2D platforming games), or just Mario with his slippery shoes.
    • Rayman Legends – great 2D platformer, but can be pretty demanding, especially when you are pressed for time while having to control both the main character and Murfy at the same time. Tons of fun though, and I love the music levels. (It is 75% off, so 10 € until 2019-07-25, which is a criminally low price for the Definitive Edition.)
    • Fast RMX – my adrenaline rush (together with ARMS) that I go back to often. It is fast, with great graphics and just scratches that Wipeout/F-Zero itch, while giving its own spin on the pod-racer genre. I prefer playing with motion controls, which does make it harder to play, but gives you a much more “realistic” feel of how it is to control a pod hurling at insane speeds. The controls are similar, but much much more sensitive than in Mario Kart 8, which make sense because of the increased speed. (until 2019-07-25 discounted by 33% to 14 € on Switch)
    • VOEZ – probably one of the best rhythm games with a lot of charm. The mobile phone version is free , but songs are in paid DLCs; while the Switch version costs actual money, but includes all (also future) DLCs, so if you wanted all songs, that is the more cost efficient way. The controls (esp. the touch-screen) are really good. The only (arguable) down side is that missing a note does not punish you, so button/screen mashing is an option. There seems to be some story hidden in the unlockable pictures, but I haven’t figured it out yet.
    • Lost in Harmony – another rhythm game, mixed with some action, where you have to avoid obstacles (similar to Subway Surf) while also getting the rhythm sections right. There are two stories included, with a dozen stages each, but they did not pull me in that much. As another mobile game that got ported to Switch, touch screen is the better way to play, but a gaming pad is very doable. Overall VOEZ is the better (and much much longer) rhythm game, but Lost in Harmony adds another layer to the gameplay (and story), which is also nice. (On the Switch it is discounted by 72% until 2019-07-31 to just 2 €, so worth it, if you like that kind of games)

    I recently got the following:

    • Sky Roguearcade 3D flight simulator where you are on missions to destroy stuff, and dogfight. The missions are procedurally generated and there is perma-death, which makes the game much more replayable. Between missions you can research and upgrade your weapons and flyer. The look and feel is very oldskool Sega with low-polygon graphics and very blue-ish colour-scheme, which I really dig. There is no story, so comparing it to StarFox would be unfair, but it does scratch that itch a bit. So far I played it with motion controls and I really liked it. Apparently the traditional controls are really tight as well. (It is currently discounted 50% on the Switch, so 8,50 € until 2019-07-25.)
    3 votes
  17. Comment on Do you have a personal website/blog? in ~comp

    hook
    Link Parent
    Good question. 15 years ago, when I started, I didn’t care. I was in high school and it seemed just like the thing to do. Back then it was very much just a public diary. A few years after that, I...

    Good question.

    15 years ago, when I started, I didn’t care. I was in high school and it seemed just like the thing to do. Back then it was very much just a public diary.

    A few years after that, I started looking at statistics and actually cared how many visitors I got.

    A few years after that, I realised most of those were spiders or spam bots, and ultimately I didn’t care what’s popular or not. If an article I wrote was useful or interesting to at least one reader out there, it was already worth publishing. If it was just as a public reminder to me (e.g. lists of my favourite DE blades and favourite shaving oils), that’s just as fine.

    The following two posts I know were the most read when they were published (tens of thousands of times), as I still looked at the numbers:

    I also suspect the following post, or at least its contents, reached many people (potentially even more as the above ones, as it was often cited in Android forums), but by then I stopped looking at stats, so I have no data to back this up:

    Regarding feedback, I really liked the comments and further discussing stuff in the comment section …back then, when there was less spam than comments :P Nowaday, I sometimes get feedback via e-mail or Slack or IRC (or here).

    3 votes
  18. Comment on In your opinion, what sort of effects has the rise of social media had upon society? in ~tech

    hook
    Link Parent
    I think this is the main gist of your comment, and I agree. It is not like the discussions that we now critique did not take place before. It is just that the discussions that took part in the...

    In other words, social media does not create effects that society would not have created without the existence of social media.

    I think this is the main gist of your comment, and I agree.

    It is not like the discussions that we now critique did not take place before. It is just that the discussions that took part in the pub¹ or café or banter at the local market, now take place even more publicly for everyone to hear and see, not just the limited group behind your table or within earshot.

    So, I don’t think the problem is with the content, or its (more or less) publicity – these things were discussed in public places before.

    The problem IMHO is with the commercial social media/network entities incentivising pub banter by awarding posting fluff more (at least relative to the effort put in) than researched articles and debate. Case in point: take any popular sub-Reddit and count how many popular comments are just stupid puns, or memes² like “Am I the only one who [popular_opinion]”. I imagine it’s not much different on Twitter.

    A further problem is also the (n)etiquette being thrown out the window, perhaps less due to the (pseudo)anonymity, but more due to simply being (also physically) detached from the consequences. Imagine what would happen in a pub if someone called someone “a fucking nazi retard”, or “bloody goat-fucker bomb-squad”, or simply telling them how they “fucked their mother”, preferably after winning a game of darts. Depending on the pub, loss of teeth is definitely within the range of options. Even in a Viennese-style café a firm escort out the door, with potential police intervention is a very likely option.

    Of course, the flip-side of this coin is that this freedom is – as @Akir commented – exactly what empowers marginalised groups to organise themselves and discuss without (or at least less) fear of repercussions.


    1: Interesting fact: The English word “pub” is short for “public house” …which for someone from the continental part of Europe is a loads of fun.

    2d Which brings us to the question of how the meme culture effects the discussion quality.

    4 votes
  19. Comment on In your opinion, what sort of effects has the rise of social media had upon society? in ~tech

    hook
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    My main issue with (modern) social networks is that they scream for your attention and want to grab and keep it for as long and as often as possible. There is no time to stop and develop a...

    My main issue with (modern) social networks is that they scream for your attention and want to grab and keep it for as long and as often as possible. There is no time to stop and develop a thought, no time to keep it simmering in your mind, do some analysis and reply thoughtfully and thoroughly. Even if you are posting or replying the “wrong” timezone, you will miss most of the potential audience. In the blogosphere it was perfectly OK to take a few days, even weeks before replying. And people managed to hold a meaningful public correspondence – some still do! – through blog posts.

    In short, the content is gone, all there is left is the comment section …

    Now, I don’t think this reason is inherent to social network, in general, but in combination with their business models.

    The reason why these social networks are such attention whores boils down to them selling your attention to others. Which is why they try to force you to drop by often and stay long.

    Now, if you take that away, having you constantly checking for new comments or content is just a strain on their servers and therefore additional cost.

    So anyone hosting themselves for free would ideally not like too many users to cope with. So a sweet spot needs to be met where it is not a too big dent in the hoster's/maintainer's personal budget, but still vivid enough to be engaging and useful. If it becomes too crowded, it becomes to expensive to run (both in time and money), which is why we see many self-hosted (nodes of federated) social networks get killed off in the height of its popularity (s.c. Mastodon nodes).

    In a paid subscription (or donation etc.) system, the incentive is to have as many paying users as possible, while not pushing for activity too much.


    This comment borrows heavily from previous comments of mine in the Does anyone (else) not use social media in its entirety? What are your reasons? thread

    8 votes
  20. Comment on Do you have a personal website/blog? in ~comp

    hook
    Link Parent
    Thanks, took me a long time to get to that. There were so many revisions during the years. BTW, I like how the choice of your theme matches the content of your blog. They seem to be in the same vibe.

    Thanks, took me a long time to get to that. There were so many revisions during the years.

    BTW, I like how the choice of your theme matches the content of your blog. They seem to be in the same vibe.

    2 votes