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Thursday, October 01, 2015

OT Gaming: October 2015

RosePortal Games, the developer of an RPG called Epic Quest of the 4 Crystals recently got caught offering compensation—in the form of free Steam keys—in exchange for Steam reviews. When Valve found out, they weren’t pleased.

Yeah, nothing shady about that…

Anyway, here’s the start of monthly Gaming threads.

Dan The Mediocre is one of "the rest" Posted: October 01, 2015 at 08:02 AM | 762 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: games, gaming, steam

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   701. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 27, 2017 at 09:28 AM (#5581331)
flop
   702. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 27, 2017 at 09:43 AM (#5581342)
Eh, there is a huge difference between a game that is F2P, and a 60$ AAA title that you paid full freight for.

Also, because it's a multiplayer game, you end up being at a significant disadvantage to people buying crates, so it's harder to earn what you need to get your own (free) crates.


It certainly looks like EA is taking it in the teeth for their decisions relating to BF2 and if so, good. Ultimately the only thing that protects gamers from predatory game design is the willingness of gamers to forego purchasing even the coolest-sounding hot games if they implement these sorts of things. Yeah it hurts to miss out on all the bells and whistles a big-budget AAA title can bring you, but stay strong my brothers. Fight the power.

   703. DJS, the Digital Dandy Posted: November 27, 2017 at 10:45 AM (#5581397)

Cyber Monday question: I'm thinking about getting some new RAM for my current computer, which only has 8 GB right now. It's one that Syzm helped me pick parts for a couple years ago, and it still can play almost every new game at near peak graphics and stay above 50 FPS, but I figure the 8GB ram is currently the weakest link in the chain. The motherboard is a Gigabyte GA-Z97MX-Gaming 5, the current ram stick is DDR3-1600.


Never hurts to get more RAM! Though try to get as close to the same specs as possible, ideally the same model. RAM is notoriously temperamental, to the extent that even the same *model* RAM doesn't always cooperate if it wasn't manufactured with the other one. So try to match them as best you can.
   704. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: November 27, 2017 at 12:37 PM (#5581468)
Ultimately the only thing that protects gamers from predatory game design is the willingness of gamers to forego purchasing even the coolest-sounding hot games if they implement these sorts of things.


It's definitely a good sign, especially since there are DLC models that have worked very well for both the companies and the players. The best version of which is probably the CK2/Total Warhammer model of putting the systems into the game, but only letting the player play them if they pay for the upgrade... and having an incredibly rich vanilla game underlying it so players don't feel like they have to buy the DLC just to get the standard experience.
   705. PreservedFish Posted: November 27, 2017 at 12:54 PM (#5581481)
What's the thought on buying an old Wii U vs the Switch? My 5.5 year old daughter has finally become competent at Mario Kart and I'd like to enjoy all the new Nintendo titles together. The last console I bought was a Wii, so the Wii U games are still new to me.
   706. manchestermets Posted: November 27, 2017 at 01:01 PM (#5581484)
Despite how badly it performed, the Wii U is a great console with some great games. Lego City Undercover is a brilliant, suitable for a 5 year-old GTA-alike and the Wii U version of Zelda BOTW is good enough for me. The thing currently tempting me to upgrade is the new Mario game, but I'm holding out for now.
   707. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: November 27, 2017 at 01:23 PM (#5581493)
I tend to get the feeling that EA as the evil empire is a dated concept --

But that said, I don't like the loot box model and wish it all the ill in the world if only to keep it from ever becoming viable in games I do like -- I have finally made my peace with DLCs, albeit grudgingly.

In any case, the last console I owned - well, still own - is a Sega Genesis so I'm not really in any position to criticize anything regarding those systems... not my cup of tea so it's only so far as trends potentially bleeding into games I like that I care.

The big reason consoles aren't my thing is mainly that I tend to multitask while gaming -- Turn-based strategy titles are perfect for leisurely playing while cleaning or watching TV or reading in between turns and I just really struggle with games that require my undivided attention during a session.
   708. JJ1986 Posted: November 27, 2017 at 02:25 PM (#5581554)
I got some Ballistix Sport DDR4 for my desktop about 6 months ago and it was around $55 for 8GB sticks. I looked today to get more and that has gone up to over $90 everywhere.
   709. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: November 27, 2017 at 02:46 PM (#5581565)
Yeah, I just bought parts to build two machines yesterday and was shocked how much RAM has skyrocketed across the board. It used to be one of the cheapest components of a machine; now, for a budget build, it's the most expensive part in the machine.
   710. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: November 29, 2017 at 11:43 AM (#5582632)
Yeah, I went with Szym's suggestion to get the same model that I already have in, and it cost me like 10 bucks more than the original stick did a couple years ago.
   711. DJS, the Digital Dandy Posted: December 04, 2017 at 02:05 AM (#5585449)
Yeah, RAM is a nightmare right now. There are two big factors here. First is the transition period from DDR3 to DDR4 memory has a lot more OEMs making large RAM orders. The other is that all RAM basically originates from Micron, Samsung, and Hynix and the first two have both moved to smaller process nodes, which is causing a choke point in the RAM supply, with the yields still fairly low. I wouldn't expect RAM to really start dropping in price for like another year.
   712. Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: December 04, 2017 at 10:35 AM (#5585561)
Calling all nerds!

Despite lacking any know-how I did my own build earlier in the year based on this thread making it seem so easy, and everything had been going swimmingly, but now I'm getting a taste of the downside of not actually having any idea what I'm doing.

The stock fan at the back of the case has started making a loud whir, bordering on grinding, on startup. Guessing it might be dust, I pulled the fan out and gave it a few nice blasts of air, and after more whirring the next morning, it was silent for a week. Then it started again, and the same trick didn't "work" a second time. Is there some other simple fix, or should I just be chucking it and getting a new one?
   713. DJS, the Digital Dandy Posted: December 04, 2017 at 05:45 PM (#5586047)
Probably bearings going bad. Just swap in a new fan; they're dirt-cheap parts and they do fail occasionally.
   714. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: December 04, 2017 at 07:16 PM (#5586098)
Yeah, just replace the fan. It's not worth f'ing around with a gimpy fan.
   715. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: December 15, 2017 at 11:58 AM (#5593249)
So I'm curious if anyone has ever experienced this problem with Steam (and knows how to resolve it) -

Whenever I play a Steam game - all of them, doesn't matter which; have experienced in Civilization, Endless Legend, OOTP, Hearts of Iron, doesn't matter - there will in fairly short order, develop audio problems... crackling, hissing, etc. In fact - it persists even I mute all the game's audio. No other audio problems with the laptop whatsoever.

Yes, yes... drivers this and updates that. All checked. It's not some 5K alienware rig - but I don't think it's a power thing, either (i7 last generation at 2.8 ghz and 16 gigs of RAM). What's more - I experience no audio problems in anything else... streaming netflix, multi-tasking, even running the music player with a local/non-steam game.

I haven't messed around enough to confirm with certainty - but the audio issue did NOT manifest when I tried about 90 minutes of play with the Steam client in offline mode. The above NON-manifestations of the static also do not seem to occur when the Steam client service is running - and other non-Steam apps are running. Solely if the client is online while I'm playing a Steam title.

I've run out of ways to complain to Steam about it - one more support chat tells me to update my drivers and someone's getting murdered.... and based on google searches - I highly doubt this is a local hardware issue.

I suppose I don't do multiplayer much - so running offline mode is mainly just a hassle, but it's reached the point of annoyance... Anyone?
   716. SteveF Posted: December 15, 2017 at 03:48 PM (#5593453)
The first thing I'd try is going into the steam settings and turning off steam specific sounds/features when playing games. So things like sound notifications when friends come on, maybe even the steam overlay itself when playing games, etc. I'd also check your voice settings/music settings etc. I'd check every single way the steam client processes or generates sound and disable them all and see if that fixed the hissing. Then you can start enabling them again one by one until you figure out which setting is causing the issue.

My gut feeling is that it might be related to a microphone setting within steam, but that feeling is a product of my own personal experiences with windows hissing noises.
   717. GGIAS (aka Poster Nutbag) Posted: December 15, 2017 at 03:52 PM (#5593456)
Was gonna post but I’d be saying the same as above. Check the mic settings in steam. They occasionally get weird. Even if you’ve never used the steam chat, I’d give it a look anyways just in case.
   718. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: December 16, 2017 at 02:08 PM (#5593740)
Yeah, disable your microphone (if you're not playing a multiplayer with chat) and see if that resolves the issue. I'd also disable the camera too, but that's just me being paranoid.
   719. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: December 16, 2017 at 02:24 PM (#5593747)
Not me man, when I go on one of my pantsless kill streaks I don’t care who knows it,
   720. Paul d mobile Posted: January 19, 2018 at 04:10 PM (#5609771)
I got a Switch, and it's fantastic. Although I wish the games weren't $80.

And I love the wildness behind LABO.
   721. GGIAS (aka Poster Nutbag) Posted: January 19, 2018 at 09:56 PM (#5609924)
So, I am gonna be "that guy" for a minute if y'all do not mind:

As some of you may know, I do the whole Twitch thing as well as some marketing/PR work (as well as a day job!). This was a hobby that exploded into, well, an actual publishing gig. Our (The Hidden Levels) first Steam page for "The Void Rains Upon Her Heart" is due to go live in just a few days, but if anyone is interested in checking out a playable build of our game (not the final version, of course) they may do so here. Feel free to give me feedback anytime as well. We have a few different titles coming out over the next few months and I'd be delighted if anyone here were to enjoy any of them.

Happy Gaming y'all!

   722. Random Transaction Generator Posted: January 24, 2018 at 11:44 AM (#5612381)
Your game is SO very outside my play list. Bullet-hell games are too stressful.

That said, watching you play Dead Cells means I've put in WAY too many hours into the game already, so I thank (and curse) you for that.
(Though, I have to say that I think I might be burned out on the game right now. I'm not a huge fan of the foundry update.)
   723. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: February 14, 2018 at 11:49 AM (#5624889)
Checked out the new Civ6 expansion and I think I'm now fully onboard with the idea that the odd-numbered versions suck and the even-numbered are the winners. It helps that not only does the expansion add new aspects (eras + golden/dark/heroic ages, governors) that seem fun, if in need of some refining - but they also seemed to have dumped a lot of the other stuff I love (what some people call "bloat")... i.e, lots of new wonders, natural wonders, and resources.

I'm a fan.

One random question... and I fear this was a machine setup error/mistake on my part - my current machine is my first with a large SSD but with most storage on HDD. I.e., 125 gigs on the former, a terabyte on the latter. It appears that for some stupid reason - the HDD isn't automatically initialized/windows doesn't magically include it in the partition. I don't have any real "files" on this machine - never bothered transferring over my music/video/etc library (old laptop is basically acting a file server).

Is there an EASY and PAINLESS way to just add it to the existing partition - or just go back to ground zero? I.e., the problem is that everything - which would mostly be my Steam library - has default installed to the SDD, and now - it's out of space to even allow update packs via steam. I've formatted the HDD and tried just configuring to store to the HDD (i.e., moved docs - including all game save folders, etc), but it doesn't seem to work (i.e., tried creating a steam folder on HDD and then installing a game there - but seems like Steam doesn't like a bifurcated library/two locations on the same machine). Would I need to completely uninstall steam at least and reinstall everything to the HDD? This seems a like a real failing on the part of windows (or the Steam client, though my guess is that it's a windows problem). I suppose uninstalling/reinstalling everything from Steam on down isn't the end of the world, but I have a sneaky suspicion that I actually need reformat/repartition in total, right down to the OS, to use this wasted terabyte.

Ugh. Windows increasingly does nothing but annoy me... over the weekend, I thought something was wrong with my display or GFX because the tint got odd... and it turns out windows implemented a "nighttime" color scheme change and automatically ticks it to on in the evenings. WTF... forcing me to walk through those stupid guided tours with every update is NOT a good business practice.
   724. JJ1986 Posted: February 14, 2018 at 12:02 PM (#5624906)
I just looked in Steam and under, Settings-> Downloads there's a "Steam Library Folders" option that allows you to add folder on other drives. I'm not sure if it will automatically move games for you after that, but at worst you'd have to uninstall and re-install particular games.
   725. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: February 14, 2018 at 12:10 PM (#5624912)

Checked out the new Civ6 expansion and I think I'm now fully onboard with the idea that the odd-numbered versions suck and the even-numbered are the winners. It helps that not only does the expansion add new aspects (eras + golden/dark/heroic ages, governors) that seem fun, if in need of some refining - but they also seemed to have dumped a lot of the other stuff I love (what some people call "bloat")... i.e, lots of new wonders, natural wonders, and resources.


Two questions:

If you play a full campaign, how much time is taken up by the ancient era (up to AD 1)? Previous versions tended to collapse this period into near-irrelevancy

If you play a full campaign, how easy is it to build a sizeable ancient army (>10 units in addition to defenders) without compromising on growth and development (i.e., hitting historical milestones on schedule)?
   726. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: February 14, 2018 at 12:20 PM (#5624917)
I just looked in Steam and under, Settings-> Downloads there's a "Steam Library Folders" option that allows you to add folder on other drives. I'm not sure if it will automatically move games for you after that, but at worst you'd have to uninstall and re-install particular games.


Yeah - I tried that... works for the download, but the install fails (yes, used the steam cache clearing, made multiple attempts, etc). Don't recall the error on the install specifically, but I believe it was referring to a problem with either a registry key or something and I just gave up and cleared space on the SSD by uninstalling a game.
   727. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: February 14, 2018 at 12:36 PM (#5624927)
If you play a full campaign, how much time is taken up by the ancient era (up to AD 1)? Previous versions tended to collapse this period into near-irrelevancy

If you play a full campaign, how easy is it to build a sizeable ancient army (>10 units in addition to defenders) without compromising on growth and development (i.e., hitting historical milestones on schedule)?


Well - I exclusively play marathon... and actually, I have not yet gotten to AD 1 yet. This makes my first century or so very "next turn... next turn..." as it takes longer to get units up and running. Waiting for one of the mods that expands your starting units to get updated (i.e., multiple settlers, a worker or two, plus a scout).

I've only just started getting into the "era" mechanics -- basically, there's another beaker counter ("era points") which spawns either golden ages (if you reach the threshold) or dark ages (if you fall short). There's also a "heroic age" - which is supposed to be a supercharged golden age - but haven't gotten one yet. In any case, this particular mechanic seems like it's a great early game booster. You get "era points" for all sorts of things - clearing barbs, discovering a natural wonder, culture/science boosts, etc.

Another neat feature that I've only seen happen to AI civs is that they added a mechanic similar to the "Revolutions" mod from civ4 --- it introduces the concept of loyalty... Basically, cities have loyalty scores that are buffed/mallused by various things (governors, tall vs wide civs, etc -- lots of the things that used to figure into the old, civ4 happiness mechanics). Things can cities to essentially break off from their prior/founding civ. They may join other civs - or - more often, they become "independent" civs... basically, becoming a city state - though, unlike regular city states, they don't have the "flavor bonuses" nor can you ally with them. You can "attract" them into your civ -- or -- you can also just conquer them.

In any case, IMHO -- the Rise and Fall Expansion would actually be geared pretty heftily towards addressing your first item... Most of these things seem best tailored to expanding gameplay in the first half/first third of the game.

The second - not so much... or at least - I generally play 'small' in terms of forces early, so I guess I couldn't say (it's usually not until at least gunpowder that my army is anything other than the smallest). That said - some of the new mechanics (governors and eras) do provide some unit building buffs... I just haven't really focused on them/used those particular buff options. I'm generally much more of a turtler.

I still think that post-Civ4 iterations (including civ6, but civ5 was the worst) are far too "pre-planned", or penned in -- driving you too much towards specific paths... but I do think that this particular expansion has done a lot open that up. I'm still playing through on lower levels to get a handle on the mechanics - but I can certainly see some of these items (ages in particular) would lead to interesting games where you might be forced to abandon one path and try another.
   728. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: February 14, 2018 at 12:50 PM (#5624934)
Oh, and they FINALLY added the "Restart" (regenerate map) out of the box.

There was a mod for this before (apparently the code was always present, they just never included a UI option to trigger it) - but the mod was basically an exe overwrite enabling the button and it would always get lost with every game update.
   729. GGIAS (aka Poster Nutbag) Posted: February 14, 2018 at 02:11 PM (#5624987)
IT IS HERE!!! Ok, last self promo for now. I promise. If ya like SHMUPS/Bullet-hells and/or Rogue-like elements, this may be right up your alley! Celebrate Valentine's Day with a Zaraden full of love!! :D

The Void Rains Upon Her Heart
   730. zenbitz Posted: March 21, 2018 at 12:19 PM (#5640919)
Have any of you tried Surviving Mars. I am not a big paradox guy, games too long.
   731. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 21, 2018 at 02:17 PM (#5641039)
I got Surviving Mars a couple of days before official release for Xbox One. I am a fan of Paradox games in theory, haven't played too many in practice. Since I am a junkie for space travel/colonization games (big fan of High Frontier or Terraforming Mars), this hits the perfect sweet spot and is close to my personal ideal for a game.

Interface is clearly ported from PC to console, but it works for me. You start with nothing -- you send rockets to Mars with some basic resources and robot drones to build a habitable colony, then bring over human colonists and set up research labs, rare alloy mines, and other constructions to build a self-sufficient colony over time. A little like Colonization in that regard. I am playing the quick start mode so it's on super-easy setting, but at higher difficulty levels the colonists will tend to get angry and restless if things aren't to their liking, and it becomes a bit like sim city.

There is a lot of resource management -- if you like tracking logistics, you'll like this game. I love that sort of thing but it's not for everyone. For example, I wanted to build a new dome in a different area of the map. I had to send a team of drones to set up some areas to store resources, then used transport drones to ship in concrete, metal and machine parts. I used those to construct a solar array and concrete factory to make more resources (since my other concrete factories had exhausted their raw materials). I then connected my small sub-colony to the larger power grid. Then, construction started on a habitable dome which requires substantial resources, much of which is trucked in from the main colony. Once the dome is built, I'll build infrastructure to link it up to my O2/H2O network to supply air and water. The dome is being built next to a rich supply of rare metals for mining and export to Earth.
   732. zenbitz Posted: March 21, 2018 at 02:24 PM (#5641050)
Since I am a junkie for space travel/colonization games (big fan of High Frontier or Terraforming Mars), this hits the perfect sweet spot and is close to my personal ideal for a game.

Those are both pretty great, although High Frontier is very hard. Sounds like I should checkout Surviving Mars. Have you tried Leaving Earth?

My son played a lot of Oxygen Not Included... but it seemed way too tedious. He also is VERY good at terraforming mars.
   733. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 21, 2018 at 02:38 PM (#5641065)
Yes, I have and have enjoyed Leaving Earth, though haven't played it as much as I would like. I've also played the recently-released The First Martians.
The boardgame I am very much looking forward to is Space Corp.
   734. GGIAS (aka Poster Nutbag) Posted: March 22, 2018 at 03:49 PM (#5641808)
OOTP 19 is out y'all! Steam Workshop has been added. Not a fan of steam? No problem, game has also been added to Origin. If you happen to have a subscription to Origin Access, you can already access and play OOTP 19 as part of said service. No purchase needed. The UI has been updated somewhat and I am still getting used to it, I have only poked around in it for about 5-10 minutes or so and just wanted to spread the word. Happy gamin!
   735. Greg K Posted: March 22, 2018 at 04:02 PM (#5641822)
Have you used any of the 3D gameplay in OOTP 19? I read that one of their goals was to take a step forward there.
   736. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 22, 2018 at 04:21 PM (#5641839)
More than likely slapping down the money for 19 as soon as I finish off some work -

Based on what I've seen in the release notes/screenies - I don't really see much new in the whole "organizational management"; that is - changes in how coaches/scouts/staffs are used, etc. While I do a fair amount of individual game managing -- usually 1/3 to 1/2 of my season games, I manage... though, with plenty of autocompletes for games that get out of hand or autoplay till the 7th/8th/9th.

My main OOTP play is on the GM front. This has - unfortunately - meant the last 3-4 version purchases have really amount to spending the 30-40 bucks on the new roster sets. But whatever - it remains a quality product and I'm sure 19 will be no different.

Mostly, I'm just hoping that they finally got rid of that stupid personality setting that makes Javier Baez into a real jerk :-)

That was really the worst part of OOTP18 -- the whole "challenge mode" thing... I got so addicted to it - it became a neat little way to keep myself from 'cheating' with edits - but it always annoyed me that Baez inevitably became a clubhouse cancer/problem child.
   737. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: March 22, 2018 at 04:42 PM (#5641852)
Sweet gods below, how could anyone who dislikes Steam tolerate Origin?

The best way to buy OOTP is directly from the OOTP site.

There is very little substantive change from OOTP18 to 19. Most of their time the past year has been spent on upgrading the ingame graphics. I think at this point OOTP is pretty much a finished product under the hood and from here on out it's going to mostly be about updating rosters and improving the engine for playing out games.
   738. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 22, 2018 at 05:12 PM (#5641868)
I think at this point OOTP is pretty much a finished product under the hood and from here on out it's going to mostly be about updating rosters and improving the engine for playing out games.


BOOOOOOO!!!!!!

The best way to buy OOTP is directly from the OOTP site.


Meh - I'm a reformed Steam hater, but at this point? It's just easier to manage my game library via Steam.

Oh, BTW - just in case anyone ever wonders per a question I noted above (default SSD vs HDD)... Turns out, you can bifurcate your library - I made a couple mistakes in my initial attempts... First - I had an error that didn't initially catch my eye in the OS-side formatting of the HDD. Second - when I tried to move just a single game to the HDD - I had forgotten about some custom modding I had done locally that was still on the SSD, so that was the source of my error. Once I fixed everything - then did a complete uninstall (don't try moving!!!) of the title, I was able to reinstall on the HDD.

So - now I've got some titles on the SSD and others (generally - the larger ones) on the HDD.

I am not sure who to blame this on, frankly... As I understand it, the SSD advantage is more efficient R/W so if you've got something that needs to do a lot more R/W to disk, it's better served operating off the SSD. However, it just feels like the OS - and/or applications themselves (perhaps in conjunction with the OS) - ought to be one of hell of a lot better at determining appropriate installation paths. If you're going to bifurcate AND really change directory structures in a way that leaves behind the antiquated "you have to manually pick your paths" - then FFS... get better at it. Current state, it feels like the worst of both worlds. All the mechanisms and UIs on the file side that I felt I had some expertise with ~10 years ago with customizing installation locations, saving games, et al are no longer valid - but the configurations and settings of the installation processes do absolutely nothing; app or OS - to recognize/optimize.

Maybe I'm just an old idiot stuck behind the times... but it just really felt like this whole, seemingly simple, operation took a hell of a lot investigation and attempts than it should have.
   739. JJ1986 Posted: March 22, 2018 at 05:32 PM (#5641876)
Origin is literally the worst. I downloaded a free trial (full game, just only available for 3 days) of one of the Dragon Age games and then bought the game and had to completely uninstall the trial and re-download and re-install the whole game.
   740. SteveF Posted: March 22, 2018 at 06:05 PM (#5641882)
Maybe I'm just an old idiot stuck behind the times

You can just put the games you play frequently on the SSD and the games you play less frequently on the HDD and move them back and forth to your heart's content.

The easiest way is probably using steam mover or steam library manager. Steam mover uses symbolic links and moves the files to the other drive. I'm not 100% sure how steam library manager works.

I don't really understand your other complaints. I suppose having a single logical drive spanning both a SSD and a HDD with an OS that could place/move a file to the appropriate physical drive based on frequency of use might be interesting, but there would be significant downsides as well related to both spanning and the nature of SSDs.
   741. smileyy Posted: March 22, 2018 at 06:27 PM (#5641889)
You mean like Apple's Fusion Drive? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fusion_Drive
   742. SteveF Posted: March 22, 2018 at 06:38 PM (#5641897)
You mean like Apple's Fusion Drive? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fusion_Drive

Ideally without Apple's pricing, sure. I still wouldn't touch a hybrid drive.

How much is a 500 GB SSD these days anyway? $130 or so? You'd be hard pressed to fill that up with programs you run frequently. You can buy a 2-4TB HDD to store whatever else you want.
   743. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 22, 2018 at 06:40 PM (#5641899)
You can just put the games you play frequently on the SSD and the games you play less frequently on the HDD and move them back and forth to your heart's content.


My experience with "moves" was a disaster - unless by "move", you mean clean/complete uninstall/reinstall.

The easiest way is probably using steam mover or steam library manager. Steam mover uses symbolic links and moves the files to the other drive. I'm not 100% sure how steam library manager works.


Not familiar with this tool within Steam - and I thought fully investigated Steam options... Ironically enough, I kind of get the feeling that Windows has kind moved more towards a UNIX-style symbolic link system - 10-15 years ago, I feel like I was a maven at using sym links on a UNIX-based system but I still suck at it in WIndows. Maybe I'm just more command line-driven than I am GUI, IDK.

I don't really understand your other complaints. I suppose having a single logical drive spanning both a SSD and a HDD with an OS that could place/move a file to the appropriate physical drive based on frequency of use might be interesting, but there would be significant downsides as well related to both spanning and the nature of SSDs.


THat's the heart of it - I'm so used to logicals/drive mappings being so distinct and, for lack of a better word, purposeful that the advent of truly storage-capable SSDs has really thrown me a for loop. Again - it's probably an age thing... but 10 years ago or so, I had a fair number of external drives and whatnot - but all of which I had to manually map and all applications I completely understand how to configure to conform to my mappings. BITD - you had to - because adding additional storage via an external or second internal was not 'standard', so if you wanted to use such, you had to.

Maybe I should be blaming my manufacturer, IDK -- but it's just nuts to me that I bought a machine with a 250 gig SSD and a terabyte HDD - the HDD wasn't even formatted. Perhaps that's the crux or seed of my frustration - I expect to have to deal with formatting and configuration of an external or even internal expansion. I guess I just figured if you're going to build the machine with X + Y - why isn't Y already setup to essentially the serve the purpose it's intended (less R/W intensive bloated storage)?

   744. SteveF Posted: March 22, 2018 at 06:44 PM (#5641904)
I guess I just figured if you're going to build the machine with X + Y - why isn't Y already setup to essentially the serve the purpose it's intended (less R/W intensive bloated storage)?

I get you now. That's actually pretty reasonable. I'm not sure how you'd manage that for the technologically limited (which you aren't, but imagine a grandpa in your shoes).

At that point a hybrid drive would make a bunch of sense. But then does grandpa really need an SSD at all? Probably not given the way he is likely using his computer.
   745. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 22, 2018 at 07:13 PM (#5641917)
I get you now. That's actually pretty reasonable. I'm not sure how you'd manage that for the technologically limited (which you aren't, but imagine a grandpa in your shoes).


Oh, I very much sometimes feel I'm like maybe 5 years away from being there!

And I'm not that old... In a way, it's almost paradoxical - the more (Windows in particular) tries turn everything into a wizard-based approach - or more accurately, Be Like Apple, the more I seem to get lost. It's like the core concepts and configurations are still there, but I struggle monumentally to do the same things I used to do in my sleep when it was (supposedly) harder and clunkier. Even simple, stupid things - sym links, virtual directories, etc - sometimes I find myself complaining under my breath that MS almost seems to go out its way to hide full paths... i.e., stupid stuff like, for example, a music playlists. I have a few game titles where I've just cooked up custom playlists for the games - when I migrated to a new machine, it took more than an hour of a lot of manual work just fix everything and it REALLY shouldn't take that much effort (and what's worse, I didn't fix the problem via Windows... ultimately, it was just easier to use cygwin overlay to command line a SED). There was probably an - allegedly - simple way to do it via windows, but damned if I could find it.
   746. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 26, 2018 at 03:30 PM (#5643298)
So I played around a bit with OOTP19 over the weekend... my thoughts/quasi review -

For folks who just play MLB teams/standard games - not really a whole lot new here... as with the past several releases, it's mainly ~35 bucks for an updated roster set. Still, it's a good product so I don't really mind just making an annual contribution to Markus' efforts.

Some UI improvements here and there - I find the revised interface to have some little bells and whistles (for example, a free agent personnel drop-down that puts your open spots readily close at hand). There are also a few new player view screens - the "scouting page" for the players got some nice facelifts, I think - though much is eye candy (there's a new graphical view of ratings). There are also some additional player report pages - injury history now broken out separately as well as a nifty batter/pitcher vs pitcher/batter for those who might want to play SSS matchups.

The main big thing I found was the in-game management UI - haven't yet tinkered with the default widgets (they are customizable); but I'm not a huge fan of the revised default organization... there's a new "fresh/tired/exhausted" color-coded bar that's decent. However, the main improvement is definitely the better 3D game screen - and much as it's just aesthetics, it's definitely an upgrade. The little player figures now actually "do things" - i.e., players round bases, go halfway, retreat to tag up, booted balls/errors actually look like what the text says they are, etc. If you actually care about such stuff - it's a big improvement. I manage about half my games and I will admit that it does increase immersion - even if it's not where I'd have spent my dev time.

It's more than likely just a factor of new roster sets- I recall similar travails starting out with prior new versions - but I did find trading to be... different. I didn't see any release notes indicating AI enhancement in this regard, but I have found that I can no longer stockpile young relievers as easily I could in 18. In addition, I've had less success with the immediate "sign every decent filler to a minor league contract, then trade them for C prospects"... Again - I suspect this is mainly because of the new rosters and my unfamiliarity with new combos. I.e. prior versions - you ended up 'learning' which combos worked... I had probably a good dozen preseason/April trades I'd constantly make with new games in OOTP18, so I imagine this will change.

It does also appear that they've updated the FA comp rules, though - the new rules are so niche driven, it's impossible for me to tell if they're working right or not... Sadly, does not appear that the INTL budgeting is included - might be a toggle or configuration I missed - but I haven't seen any real way to implement the budgets/slots/capability to trade dollars specifically for the INTL FA pools (i.e., you can still trade cash, but it looks like everybody gets the same pool).

In any case, if you're strapped for cash - I don't see any real reason to upgrade OOTP18 to OOTP19... but if the $35 is pretty meaningless in the grand scheme of your entertainment dollars, there are nice upgrades. It's just mainly that the upgrades are more in the realm of eye candy.
   747. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: March 26, 2018 at 04:26 PM (#5643362)
I'll make the upgrade later in the summer when it goes on sale for $20. I don't think it's worth $40.
   748. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 28, 2018 at 12:08 PM (#5644237)
One other thing I've noticed -- again, perhaps just a factor of new roster sets (and a new head scout) -- the 'dispersal' of the player ratings in OOTP19 also seems to be improved. I use 20-80 scales across the board and one thing I often found in 18 is that ratings seemed to have a tendency to really bunch up, to the extent something like 90-95% of most systems would have nothing but 21 (for hitters) or 20 (for pitchers), with even legitimate prospects with decent potential AND ratings sort of being tossed into a too broad gaggle. This didn't seem to really impact things like trades - but it made for player lists and such a bit of a pain.

In 19 - I'm just finding that the rating seem to be better spread. This seems like it also carries through to individual skillsets - though, the pitcher "stuff" still doesn't seem to scale right (I have > 80 enabled, and just too many guys in the 90+ range)... on the flipside, 'control' seems off (virtually no guys over 55/60, too many guys < 40).

Still, I know this is very much a product of your scout's attributes - so it might very well just be a difference in scout... though, in 18 - I did tinker with different scouts and the bunching problem seemed to manifest in all of them. In 19 - I'm just seeing a better dispersal - with bunching happening more where I might expect. I.e., systems are still mostly fodder guys at 20 - but just thinking of Sickels top 30 and the idea that a C prospect is still a pseudo-prospect, I'm just seeing more distinction between guys in that bottom half of your top 30 vs pure org fodder/roster filler.
   749. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: March 28, 2018 at 12:29 PM (#5644255)
I'll pick it up at some point because it does look fun. Once I'm finished with this playthrough of Witcher 3 I'll be wide-open for a new game. Currently seriously considering the early access co-op game Hunt Showdown because I like the idea of a co-op/competitive gameplay where you can turn on each other at any time.

Of course there's always Fort Nite, that's what the kids are into these days.
   750. Greg K Posted: March 31, 2018 at 12:04 PM (#5646166)
A bit dated now with Civ 6 out, but the latest academic treatment of historical strategy games:

Simulating the Ages of Man: Periodization in Civilization V and Europa Universalis IV

You can present this as evidence the next time someone questions the value of publicly supported academia!
   751. McCoy Posted: April 01, 2018 at 10:07 AM (#5646425)
I picked up OOTP19 the other day. Haven't played it yet but I expect to get into it this week coming up. Haven't played it since OOTP13 or so.
   752. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: April 02, 2018 at 05:55 PM (#5647198)
Simulating the Ages of Man: Periodization in Civilization V and Europa Universalis IV


Thanks - an interesting read...

FWIW, I think Paradox's model - an epochal model of age progression where it takes multiple games and can't be handled in a single title - works best.

"Snowballing" is real problem in the Civ series... Inevitably, I've found that in Civilization, once you really master gameplay - you end up flying through medieval+ ages in a manner that fails history (and frankly, gameplay). The Civ series attempts to compensate by making - largely military - elements era-agnostic, but this just leads to annoyances. I.e., the cliche about a spearman defeating a tank, which is just patently ridiculous. Beyond the combat models, they've also tried to use sprawl nerfs to throttle the snowball effect - but all this really does is make the player a little more judicious in what they capture or conquer.

That said, there are some Civ mods that do a nice job spreading out later eras - highly recommend them... but they still fall a bit short because the tech tree is too... for lack of a better word - two-dimensional, rather than truly changing the progression.

The epoch-specific Paradox games just inevitably work this better with a broader, wider tech tree (and to some extent, making the tech tree less critical to progression. I.e., in Paradox games - the trees are often "unfinishable" - whereas in Civ, you expect to research everything).

   753. Greg K Posted: April 02, 2018 at 06:01 PM (#5647203)
Yeah, I prefer the Paradox approach, which I worry might come across in the article.
   754. Random Transaction Generator Posted: April 03, 2018 at 10:58 AM (#5647442)
Slay the Spire is currently my "one more try" game addiction right now.
(When I'm not playing Fornite Battle Royale)

It has three things I love:

- combat using cards/decks/combos
- rogue-like permadeath and progression
- post-game stats/info overload

I've only picked it up a couple of days ago so I'm learning the intricacies of the game still.
I did so after watching a couple of streamers play it (including our very own GGIAS) and I kept putting it off until it went on sale.
Well, it didn't go on sale and I caved over the long weekend.
   755. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: April 03, 2018 at 11:38 AM (#5647470)
Yeah, I prefer the Paradox approach, which I worry might come across in the article.


Ha - wait... you authored that? Well, now I enjoyed it even more! You need to get better at tooting your own horn :-)

I don't think fans (or devs/architects) of either title would say it was anything other than a fair comparison - indeed, dialing back a few pages (which means months/years in this thread) - your ultimate conclusion was one of my beefs with Civ5... that it drives you towards a conclusion (winning a victory type), rather than the more Paradox/EU-centric theme of "here's the period, enjoy the ride".... though, I admit - I do make use of some tweaks and mods (and the occasional cheat :-)) to attempt the EU 'conquer the world' stuff on occasion.
   756. This is going to be state of the art wall Posted: April 03, 2018 at 02:28 PM (#5647581)
How much is a 500 GB SSD these days anyway? $130 or so? You'd be hard pressed to fill that up with programs you run frequently. You can buy a 2-4TB HDD to store whatever else you want.


SSDs are getting cheap again. It's a good time to buy.
   757. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 03, 2018 at 03:14 PM (#5647610)
On the subject of things that aren't cheap or getting cheaper, I have a brand new, unopened 16GB stick of DDR4 RAM that I'm happy to part with for a little less than I paid for it, if any Primates have a use for it. I double-ordered, apparently, when building boxes for my nephews for Christmas and my wife just stashed it in our closet without telling me. :)
   758. SteveF Posted: April 03, 2018 at 03:28 PM (#5647621)
The 1060 GTXs are slowly coming down in price. They are only $80-100 over the MSRP from 18 months ago!
unopened 16GB stick of DDR4 RAM

Single stick? Or is it 2x8? I can't remember the last time I made a box with single channel memory...
   759. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 03, 2018 at 05:28 PM (#5647672)
Single stick. I needed two for a build and ended up with three. It's this.
   760. Greg K Posted: April 03, 2018 at 06:58 PM (#5647710)
Ha - wait... you authored that? Well, now I enjoyed it even more! You need to get better at tooting your own horn :-)

I figured posting it at all was shameless enough. But this may actually be the one place in the world where it has some relevance. God knows it's not an article that is going to further my career.

I don't think fans (or devs/architects) of either title would say it was anything other than a fair comparison - indeed, dialing back a few pages (which means months/years in this thread) - your ultimate conclusion was one of my beefs with Civ5... that it drives you towards a conclusion (winning a victory type), rather than the more Paradox/EU-centric theme of "here's the period, enjoy the ride".... though, I admit - I do make use of some tweaks and mods (and the occasional cheat :-)) to attempt the EU 'conquer the world' stuff on occasion.

I might get in trouble for not properly citing, but to be honest I was thinking about some of the conversations here (and your take in particular) when I was writing that. The railroading tendency of the Civ games is not their best feature.
   761. GGIAS (aka Poster Nutbag) Posted: April 04, 2018 at 03:08 AM (#5647826)
I figured posting it at all was shameless enough.


Did you not feel more comfortable after seeing my schill of a post? You should be damn proud of that article and I think this is the perfect place for it, as it is highly relevant to a lot of the conversations in thread itself. This is kinda your perfect audience, really.
   762. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 06, 2018 at 06:55 AM (#5649165)
For any of you dorks who care, Crusader Kings II is free on Steam today.
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