tempest in a teacup

the pointless musings of a strange recluse

As if Fallout 3 weren’t annoying me enough already

I seem to have run into a bug that prevents me from progressing in the game without using a noclip cheat. WTF

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I’ll have more on the Spy vs Sniper update at some later point

But for now, this is all I want to say.

Damn you Valve and your crappy weapon unlock system!

I’ve put in maybe 3-4 hours of game time a night for the last four nights, and all I have to show for it are two Spy items that I got in quick succession on Thursday night (one of which has since become completely useless thanks to a bug fix).

I didn’t think it was possible to make the weapon acquisition process even worse, but somehow, they found a way. What is so wrong about just giving everyone the new items and letting them run off and play with them?

Bah.

This image is really the only way to sum up the situation. And yes, there are tons of achievement_idle servers out there, with players doing nothing but standing around while AFK.

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Oh Valve, you silly people

Today’s TF2 blog update is pretty funny, for all the wrong reasons.

The first was whether or not you understand what killed you. If you don’t know what killed you, that death is failing in providing you the feedback it’s supposed to, and you won’t be able to figure out what you could have done differently. Unsurprisingly, we saw that these deaths were highly aggravating to players, and in sufficient number caused new players to stop playing entirely. Trying to reduce the number of these deaths in TF2 was done through a variety of changes. It was one of the reasons why we chose to remove the hand-held grenades that each class had in TFC, which were one of the primary causes of these deaths. It was one of several goals that led to the creation of the freezecam.

…but they added critical hits.

The second was whether you felt you were actually engaged with the person who killed you. Dying to someone you weren’t engaged with, especially when you were already engaged with someone else, was aggravating. Even worse was dying to someone who you couldn’t have engaged with, even if you chose to. In that case, you’re very unlikely to believe you could have done anything differently to survive.

but they added the Sandman.

Ah well.

Why another post about TF2 oddities? Well, my total playtime as Soldier finally overtook my playtime as Pyro, making the Soldier my most-played class. I’ve mentioned before that I’ve been playing Soldier a lot more since he had a higher skill ceiling, and I’m more or less at the point where I can play the Soldier decently in public games and score reasonably high on the scoreboard. Unfortunately this has also meant that deaths due to crits have become about 100x more annoying as a result. It’s so goddamn annoying to have a decent streak as Soldier ended by some dumbass Engineer’s crit wrench because his sentry managed to kill some dipshit Spy a few minutes earlier. Or to have a Soldier that I successfully juggled one-shot me with a crit shotgun blast that wouldn’t have killed me otherwise.

And don’t get me started on Soldier and Demoman crits, even though I get my fair share of those. Ugh.

Why are there so few nocrit servers out there :(

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I have the worst luck with computer parts

I bought 4GB (2x2GB) of RAM during Amazon’s pre-Black Friday sales last week. I got it on Monday and installed it, and things ran smoothly…until I popped into Left 4 Dead today and my computer turned itself off. Twice.

One quick run of memtest86 later, and the result was clear – one of the sticks was bad. In fact, ONE BIT on that stick was bad. It would have passed the complete test suite had it not been for the random number test where that bit failed to get flipped correctly.

The aggravating part is that this happened to me one year ago with the RAM I originally bought to build this machine. The same exact problem – one bad stick of RAM.

On top of that, my five-year old Creative speakers finally gave up the ghost this week, so it looks like I’ll be needing a new set. I’m not into 5.1 or 7.1 setups that much (I used to have a 4.1 setup way back in 1999 but I kept tripping over the rear satellites), so I’ll probably pick up a cheap 2.1 set. There’s a Logitech set on Amazon going for $30 that’s gotten some good reviews.

Fortunately we have a pretty good returns service, so I’ve already asked for a replacement, and will be shipping this dud RAM back to Amazon for a refund. I hope they don’t mind that I snipped off the bar code to submit for my mail-in-rebate, though…

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Leaving on a, uh, shuttle bus

I’ll be heading to Vancouver next week for what will hopefully be a brief trip to get my US work visa stamped. And before you ask, yes, I have to leave the US in order to get my visa stamped. No, it doesn’t make sense to me either.

I’ve heard horror stories of people who get stuck for weeks waiting for their passport to be returned to them…I have my fingers crossed that my interview goes smoothly.

This has pretty much been the only thing on my mind for the last month or so.

Otherwise, not much else is going on. Playing TF2 every night with Perfect Stranger and his friends, going to work as usual and otherwise pretending that my continued legal status in this country is not down to the decision of one guy in a building in Vancouver.

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IT’S NOT OVER YET

Any claim anyone could have possibly made that the aiming system in MGS was not broken is immediately invalidated by the GODDAMN escape sequence at the end of the game.

Seriously. You’re operating a gun turret on the back of a jeep, and it doesn’t even give you any indication of what you’re aiming at, nor is there any sort of lock-on functionality. To add insult to injury they expect you to aim at moving targets with this thing.

KOJIMAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

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FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, SEGA

WHY DO YOU KEEP DOING SHIT LIKE THIS

WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY

Have you learned NOTHING?!

This stupid thing makes the werehog look awesome in comparison, seriously.

It’s times like this that I wish I drank alcohol, so I could drown my sorrows in it.

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I fucking hate AVG Antivirus

So I read this story on Slashdot this morning and reacted the same way any sane techie would: “My god, AVG is a pile of crap. I need to get it off my computer now!” So I did.

Only to have it, with its dying breath, somehow fuck up my Windows registry, preventing Windows from starting at all, except in Safe Mode.

I booted into Safe Mode and used System Restore to bring my computer back to the last point where I could guarantee that it was working. Unfortunately, System Restore also apparently rolls back installed programs. Meaning the copy of Diablo II and its expansion set that I had downloaded and installed from Blizzard’s online store are now gone.

Guess I won’t be playing any TF2 tonight while I download both games all over again :|

For some reason my game directory (with my save data apparently intact, otherwise I really would have lost it) still exists, backed up under another name, but the .exe files and Start Menu entries are nowhere to be found.

I guess AVG wanted to leave me something to remember it by. -_-

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It’s getting hot in here

No, seriously. I was wearing a jacket to work as recently as 3 weeks ago and now the temperature regularly hits 30 degrees Celsius, turning my apartment into a sauna just in time for me to get home (my patio faces west) and making me sweat while I’m sitting on my couch and reading.

I thought Seattle was supposed to be the land of lovely summers and dreary winters, not central Texas.

I bought an oscillating floor fan off Amazon to mitigate the problem, but it won’t get here until Wednesday. In the meantime I guess I’m in for some sweltering nights :/

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In case anyone was wondering where I was yesterday

Monday was a repeat performance of Friday’s “awesomeness” at work (only worse), and I got home just in time for a wind storm to knock out all power for 5 hours.

So yeah, I was a little tied up.

That new 3G iPhone looks awesome, though.

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