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TwinIon

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Everything posted by TwinIon

  1. I just feel like we've heard a bunch of stories of EA studios being forced to use Frostbite despite all their objections. That, and Respawn had only used Source for their previous games, so I would have expected that if they did get to use an engine of their choice, they'd go with that.
  2. Watching the DF review, I didn't realize that this is an Unreal engine game. I wonder how Respawn managed to negotiate that.
  3. Here's the relevant section of the bill: (page 16) I don't think the headline is actually correct. I suppose if a teacher worded a question like "explain how humans came to be," you couldn't fail them for saying "god created humans in his image." If you word a question like "explain the theory of evolution," you can still fail them if they say "doesn't matter, because Jesus." I'd be interested in hearing what teachers think. I imagine there's an argument that this could make them afraid to grade students that interject religion into answers, but I'm not actually sure that there's a lot of problems with the bill as presented.
  4. The computer systems that car companies implement are largely built and maintained by third parties, especially if they have any actual computing power. Very little, if any of their computing expertise is applicable to what is required of self driving cars. Google does have a large chip making business, specifically focused on machine learning optimization. Ford's experience buying chips from BlackBerry RIM to run the UI for the explorer isn't really the same thing. Margins don't matter when the product doesn't exist. Neither does the ability to work with fleet purchasers, or experience of getting cars to work on the road. I will grant that when self driving cars do hit the road en-mass that they will likely be wearing the badge of an established car company. As you rightfully pointed out, building cars is hard, and it's not a business that Google or Uber or nVidia or anyone else is in a reasonable position to usurp. However, none of that experience really applies to the unsolved problems of self driving cars. The problems of vision and computation and machine learning optimization are not problems the car companies are positioned to solve. Personally, I find it as hard to imagine that existing automakers "solve" self driving cars without licencing the tech as I do tech companies actually building their own cars.
  5. I don't mean that building cars is easy, just that it's a solved problem that gives you no insight into building a self driving car. You can be the best car producer in the world, but that doesn't mean you don't have any leg up in building software and you don't have any of the manpower necessary to get working on it. They want to be working on it because it could fundamentally change their entire industry, but that doesn't make Ford/Daimler/etc aren't well suited for solving the problem.
  6. Todd Phillips is apparently open to working on a sequel if he can find a similar thematic resonance. Which to me means there will be a sequel. The film was too profitable to not get a sequel.
  7. I kinda don't understand why they're launching it at all right now. Are they trying to get a slightly larger user sample than they had with their beta? It really seems like the whole thing is unfinished and there's so little to do. I feel like this is the kind of service that lives or dies on the idea that "it just works." If it was really as simple as "pick a screen, play a game," that's a value proposition that I think could be compelling. With all the barriers they have now, and with so little content behind them, it's hard to see how they think this is a worthwhile product to put out into the world.
  8. While I think it's clear that there have been setbacks, it's also really unsurprising that car companies like Daimler, GM, and Ford are having trouble with self-driving vehicles. It would be like Vizio announcing that they were going to figure out quantum computing because they make displays. Building the car is the easy part, building the self driving part is the unsolved problem. I honestly think that it's more of a question of risk than anything else. For an established company with a lot to lose, putting a self driving car out that crashes far less than a normal car is still a huge risk. I couldn't find any good recent numbers, but in 2016 Ubers were involved in at least 753 collisions that caused injuries and 10 fatal collisions in the US. If you have robots hurting hundreds of people per year and killing a few, even if you're a good deal safer than normal drivers, you still might not survive the public and regulatory scrutiny that would come with that. So the barrier to entry isn't "is it as good at driving as a person," and probably something more like "is it 100x safer than a human driver."
  9. Motorola showed off the new RAZR and I think it looks pretty great. The screen doesn't seem to have much of a crease, and the clever hinges allow it to close all the way. The small screen on the outside seems far more useful (if purposefully limited) than the small screen on the Galaxy fold, and the very nature of a vertical folding phone just makes intuitive sense. By all indications this won't be a good phone. The battery is too small, the camera isn't very good, it's not running a top of the line chip, it lacks face ID, has a meh screen resolution (and a notch), isn't IP rated for water resistance, and overall lacks the bells and whistles of the top tier competitors. Still, Moto admits this is a design first phone, and the design looks great to me. It's launching in January (with pre-orders in December) for $1500, and only on VZW for now (in the US). Far more than the Galaxy Fold, this is a design that I'd be really interested in. It seems like it should dodge some of the Folds' worst durability issues, but it's still a folding plastic screen, so I wouldn't expect it to survive long unscathed. Like many, I've got a soft spot in my heart for the old school RAZRs, and would welcome the day that a new version is worth buying.
  10. I think it's hard to say how many teams he'd be a starter on, especially since he hasn't played in so long. I would be shocked if he isn't worth a roster spot on a bunch of teams though. I'm kinda surprised that the NFL is doing anything now. Anyone have a sense of what the deal is with the timing? I figured by this point they'd just try and pretend he doesn't exist for the rest of time.
  11. @Ghost_MH@Jose Well that sucks. I also use a Tivo for some streaming, but it doesn't do 4K HDR through everything that supports it. I've had other weird issues in the past, so I was going to get either a Chromecast Ultra, Shield, or Apple TV for streaming. I guess there's no time like the present.
  12. The tech people in my feed seem most excited about the keyboard. Real arrow keys, an Esc key, and no more terrible butterfly nonsense. If I used Macs, I'd be very interested in this update.
  13. If we're doing personal favorite games and not "best" or "most important," or anything like that, here's what I came up with without putting too much thought into it. Hearthstone Lone Echo Superhot VR Portal 2 Last of Us Horizon: Zero Dawn GTA 5 Rise of the Tomb Raider Spider-man Bioshock Infinite
  14. 2 questions for people: Is the Mandalorian a weekly release, or did they drop the whole season? Anyone know if 4K HDR works via Chromecast? I have a recent Vizio, so it's equivalent to a Chromecast Ultra. I'm thinking about picking up either a shield or an Apple TV just to get better 4K/HDR across the board, but I haven't taken the leap yet.
  15. My guess is that there is no meaningful hit to sales and that they will simply add groups of missing pokemon in future games. This is arguably the largest shift that the main Pokemon franchise has ever gone through. I honestly think that it's amazing there are going to be 400 pokemon. I think they easily could have cut it in half again and still sold 20M+ copies.
  16. So apparently people are upset that this game doesn't have every pokemon in existence? As someone who hasn't played a pokemon game in a very long time, I'm not really annoyed that there are only 400 instead of the full 800, but I suppose people get tied to their favorites.
  17. So, the MCU movies that Disney+ is launching without are: The Incredible Hulk Spider-Man: Homecoming Thor: Ragnarok Black Panther Avengers: Infinity War Ant-Man and the Wasp Spider-Man: Far From Home Hulk was produced by Universal, so who knows what the rights are to that. Also, no one really cares. The two Spider-Man films belong to Sony, so no real expectation of them showing up. The others are all on Netflix now, so I imagine Disney is just waiting for that deal to end.
  18. They have a server farm with effectively unlimited compute power and they can't get more than a dozen old games up for launch? That's pretty weak. I feel like there are two possibilities. One is that publishers are wary of this kind of distribution method and haven't been excited to sign whatever deal Google is pitching them. Given that Google has relatively little in the ways of formal relationships with those companies it wouldn't surprise me, though I'm not really sure what the hang up would be. Maybe Google is trying some kind of novel payment model based on time played or something. The other likely reason I can imagine is that Stadia requires more optimization time from devs than I suspected. If it doesn't work well unless you do a bunch of work, I can imagine very few devs are willing to put much effort into something that seems likely to be a pretty small user base. I also imagine Google is working with the few companies that are putting out games and that they have pretty limited resources to spread around.
  19. I agree. Micro transactions are bad if they're locking content behind them. Cosmetics, I couldn't care less about. Historically, Diablo expansions have been pretty well worth their price. There's been a ton of content and new character classes. If I enjoy the game, I don't have any problem paying more money for more game.
  20. i5 6600K 980 Ti 16GB RAM 1TB SSD Seiki SM40UNP monitor (39" 4k60) As soon as I can find an ideal monitor, I think I'll upgrade the whole kit. I really want something 4k around 40" with variable refresh rates and better colors. I really like the single large monitor, and I very much prefer the 39" to the ultrawides out there. They're similar widths, but they lack the height, which is really wonderful to work with.
  21. Yeah, this thread is nearly a year old, but this was just on sale recently so I picked it up. I'd never played a Tropico game before 6. They've always interested me, but have somehow just never been high enough up my list to actually buy. I've put ~20 hours in the game, which isn't enough to have done it all, but enough that I've dug into pretty much all the systems. Tropico is a competent game, but the complexities seem to lie primarily in obfuscation rather than strategy, and it's strengths are in the flavor, rather than gameplay depth. If your goal is to roleplay as a certain type of dictator, I think you'll probably enjoy Tropico much more than I have. The game allows the freedom to really go all in on certain gameplay styles, but the gameplay seems to only reward a much more narrow set. So if you want to be ruthless and feared more than loved, you can do it, but the game will be much harder than if you just keep most people mostly happy. I think it's the stuff that exists because this is the sixth in the series that makes it feel like it's actually the first. Systems throughout the game seem to exist only because they've been in previous games, and therefore feel like either complete wastes of time or wholly incomplete thoughts, hidden deep in menus and almost impossible to surface otherwise. I think the best example is "Average Caribbean Happiness." In Tropico 6 you have three obvious types of happiness to balance out. You have the standard needs of the populace (food, healthcare, safety, etc.), the political wants of the people (communists, capitalists, etc.), and the geopolitical politics (deals with other major powers that you can trade with or war against). Those are all very obvious, even if how best to move any given relationship isn't usually very clear. What is not at all obvious is that the happiness of your people doesn't matter in a vacuum. What actually matters is how the happiness of your people compares to the "Average Caribbean Happiness." You can have a population that is rich and happy, where most political factions generally like you, and where all the other countries love you, but if their happiness is less than the average caribbean happiness you will get voted out of office by an overwhelming majority (an instant loss). Given that this one number can offset all your progress in all other aspects of the game, you'd think it would be highlighted, but no, it exists only on one chart, on one screen, and the game basically never points you towards it or clarifies its importance. There are a lot of things in Tropico 6 like that: things of vital importance that are generally invisible. It's really hard to figure out if you have the right number of teamsters to move things around the island. It's really hard to figure out if you're producing the right amount of a given resource for your consumption. It's really hard to figure out how various happiness ratings (fun, health, housing, etc.) affect each other. You can spend all your effort trying to make people have more fun, but if they lack something else, that fun rating won't increase, and there's nothing pointing you towards those variables as the thing preventing fun. It's in these complexities that most of the challenge of Tropico 6 lies. Once sorted, the game becomes rather simple and straightforward. There are certain industries that are far more profitable than others, so go for those whenever possible. Determine through trial and error what the correct ratio of producing to consuming buildings, and assume it's correct after that. Don't run ragged dealing with happiness, just make sure you're slightly better off than your neighbors (by sabotaging them). It's very little strategy, and much more a competition between yourself and the UI. The other frustration that I had was the complete lack of any kind of terraforming options. I understand if they want the island terrain to create the challenges for you, but it's still terribly annoying to find out that a building barley won't fit somewhere it really looks like it should. It's silly that I can build a nuclear power plant but can't fill in a puddle or deal with a slight incline. The road tool doesn't help either, in that it's inconsistent, limited, and seems to have a mind of its own. Still, it's nothing compared to the tunnel tool, which is probably the worst pathing tool I've ever seen in a game. It's almost completely worthless and impossible to use, and it would make such a big difference if it actually worked. If Tropico interests you because it looks silly and you just want to be a dick of a dictator to your people, I think there's good fun to be had. As a sim game, you can almost certainly do better.
  22. When you're putting a list like this together, I think it's fine to go in either direction in regards to popularity vs impact as long as you're consistent. So it would make more sense to me, if you're going to go with Fortnite instead of PUBG, that you'd also take League over DOTA, and probably something else for Spelunky and Broken Age. I'm not really even sure why those are on there. Representing indie games, XBLA, 2D? The way I'd personally do a list like this is to think about what major trends defined the decade in games and which games represent them or were a trend unto themselves. I think Minecraft is the most unimpeachable game on the list, for all the obvious reasons. As I said, I'd put League up there just for its continued dominance and its ever present place on the Twitch rankings and esport viewership. BoTW is a fine pick because it was both a very good game that will influence game design for years, but also because it's the best game to represent a resurgent Nintendo and the rise of the Switch. I might choose between GTA and Destiny, because I see them the two biggest poster children for the recent trend towards games as a service. They both exist in this not really an MMO, but still persistent space that encompases so much of gaming now. I'd probably go with GTA, but either seem like a fine choice. I might put Skyrim on there, as a game that has remained relevant all decade, though it's impact might be smaller than its longevity might suggest. It might have to fight it out with Witcher 3. I'd also consider The Last of Us. Yeah, Uncharted 1&2 were last decade, but that style of single player adventure really came into its own this decade and doesn't seem to be slowing down. The Tomb Raider reboots, Spider-Man, God of War, HZD, etc. It does seem like you can't really encapsulate gaming this decade if you ignore mobile. Pokemon Go seems like a good choice, though Candy Crush is annoyingly relevant. There should be spots for indie games, but I honestly don't know enough to identify the trends or figure which games I'd pick as representative.
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