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Messages - TheMikrobe

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Diablo (now with Diablo 4 Hype) / Re: Laptop Recommendations?
« on: October 17, 2017, 02:08:49 PM »
My old laptop has a 12/13 inch screen and because of my second monitor I was actually willing to go less than 15, but they didn't seem to exist in gaming quality machines (I guess video card, RAM, etc. take up space so you might as well put a bigger screen on it). 15 inches only just fits in the space on my desk so I couldn't go larger. Battery life and portability were secondary considerations for me as I still have my old one to take away - although the battery is shot on that one so I am thinking of getting another supercheap one. Another thing to consider is whether you need an optical drive, I have a cheap USB one for when I want to watch a DVD or install an old game or whatever.

Diablo (now with Diablo 4 Hype) / Re: Laptop Recommendations?
« on: October 17, 2017, 10:07:52 AM »
I never keep up with the industry so I can't give any well-thought recommendations. I bought a new laptop a few months ago and after a bit of research I realised my budget wasn't enough for more than the bottom end of gaming laptops, which meant I didn't bother to find out what the top-end tech is like.

I ended up buying a Dell Inspiron 7000 series gaming laptop, I think this one here: Price would be equivalent to slightly over US$1000. It's a 15 in screen, but since I use it side-by-side with a monitor that's not an issue for me. I've been really happy with it so far, it runs D3 and Elder Scrolls Online both at max settings with no problems.

The Argument Chamber / Re: Trump continued
« on: October 14, 2017, 02:57:12 AM »
The Iran thing is such a fuck up. Everyone says they're in compliance, so he's also isolating the US from the other countries in the deal. Also North Korea can already look to Gaddafi and Saddam as reasons not to give up nukes, now after publicly saying back-channel discussions are a waste of time the USA has shown it can't be trusted be stick to whatever agreement might have been reached.

Movies & TV / Re: bladerunner 2049
« on: October 11, 2017, 05:39:24 AM »
Don't worry, neither did I (except for the dove part) until I read some articles about it!

Movies & TV / Re: bladerunner 2049
« on: October 10, 2017, 06:33:40 AM »
Reviews are good, and also have seemed to suggest that my reservations aren't valid. I'm considering going to see it this weekend.

There was a subtle religious overtone to the movie that was unexpected.

Unexpected after the explicitness of Roy Batty, a superior being, descending from heaven, doubting himself ("Can the maker repair what he makes?"), pushing a nail through his hand, saving Deckard, then dieing and releasing an ascending dove? At least he doesn't die with his arms spread out or have JC as his initials...

you could start to really see the bigger picture of this Bladder Runner universe

I have heard that the run-time of this movie is quite long, I'd better be prepared

Gaming General / Re: Free week: Elder Scrolls Online
« on: October 06, 2017, 11:00:04 AM »
Well £30 still feels like more than I want to spend at the moment unless I have to (I know in terms of money per hour it is cheap), so I was looking for other places to go and things to do. I'd never been in to Cyrodiil or the Imperial City - I'm not against PvP per se but I'm not sure I'd like it in this game where I imagine there is a very complex metagame - also I reckon my character would get completely destroyed since I play a hard-hitting, low-defense, slow and steady style. I know there are some PvE things to do in Cyrodiil though, so I decided to see what it's like. It at first looked like it would be a fun vast wilderness to explore, but it turns out to be mostly empty space without any enemies to fight or items to find except a few scattered runestone nodes. The Floo Network gets you to the main Alliance War sites, but to find places like the Ayleid ruins I stumbled on it seems you just have to wander around for ages with nothing at all to do along the way. Oh well, I managed to find a couple of locations with sky-shards and I captured a mill for the Pact - I quite liked that indirect kind of PvP so I might spend some time on it. If it's not satisfying enough then I've still got Morrowind to look forward to, and I have no doubts that I'll enjoy that.

The Argument Chamber / Re: Kneeling to the flag
« on: October 03, 2017, 08:04:53 AM »

This is a great story. I liked the quote "I remember thinking our posture was like a flag flown at half-mast to mark a tragedy".

One of the things that does strike me about the US is that there is a high level of indoctrination into nationalism.

This is pretty much what I was trying to get at, and also what I think I've seen referred to as an attitude of "American exceptionalism" which closes people off to any kind of criticism.

The Argument Chamber / Re: Trump continued
« on: October 03, 2017, 07:51:54 AM »
The first publically atheist president? It seemed so obvious during the campaign that his advisors had made him find a church and dig out his childhood Bible.

The Argument Chamber / Re: Kneeling to the flag
« on: October 01, 2017, 05:48:19 PM »
The national symbols of the US (constitution, anthem, flag) have a cultural prominence that I think you have to be American to truly understand. The level of outrage and the rhetoric used baffle me. But I agree with all you said and absolutely think these guys are doing a good thing - I really enjoyed it when Trump came out with his "fire the sons of bitches" statement and the number of people kneeling jumped up from a handful to what seemed like half the players.

The notion that "people sacrificed for the flag" to give it a totemic quality that means respect for it should never be violated doesn't wash.

I hadn't thought about this on the lines you talked about, i.e. whose sacrifice, but they were good points. It comes out a lot as an emotional argument to try to associate with the taboo of criticising soldiers, but I think that's flawed. They fought for the country not the flag, the flag symbolises the country​... and the whole of the country, which is more than the military. If one aspect of the country has a problem then protesting the flag is totally appropriate, and it says nothing about other aspects.

There's nothing to suggest that these guys kneeling are against the US generally - I think the opposite ​actually, since they obviously understand the power of what they're doing and seemed reluctant to do it. People should seriously consider what would bring them to it, but as you say they would rather ignore it and disrespectfully shout about disrespect.

Gaming General / Re: A Nub's Journey into Elite Dangerous
« on: September 29, 2017, 11:27:36 AM »
Cool. Sounds really interesting, although not enough for me to pay for it at the moment.

I would never smuggle slaves though, but I assume there is other contraband like drugs. In ESO I always choose the freedom resolution, including releasing ghosts from being bound, even though it makes no difference in gameplay and is sometimes a longer path. It really annoys me when it's impossible!

Gaming General / Re: A Nub's Journey into Elite Dangerous
« on: September 29, 2017, 11:03:37 AM »
Yep, I got that :)

MMO elements but, players aren't forced to interact with them at all

This is how I try to play ESO too, which pretty much works although you can't completely avoid other players. Most of it is soloable and they only affect me if they disturb the monsters or steal a resource I'm just about to harvest. I usually like seeing them run around because it makes the world feel more alive.

Is the player influence on politics, trade, etc., fast enough and significant enough to be noticeable and affect your decisions day-to-day or week-to-week, or does it change slowly over a period of months? This is what I found most fascinating.

Gaming General / Re: A Nub's Journey into Elite Dangerous
« on: September 29, 2017, 10:20:54 AM »
I've never played a space sim and I'm not sure if I'd enjoy it, but the way you guys are describing it sounds amazing. I just had to post an update about Elder Scrolls to remind myself I'm already playing an excellent MMO!

Gaming General / Re: Free week: Elder Scrolls Online
« on: September 29, 2017, 10:11:19 AM »
I'm going to reach a decision point soon. I've almost finished everything in Wrothgar, which I'm still really enjoying as an area. I just have to finish up the main quest, do what I think is the last local quest, and the two group dungeons (which, based on group dungeons in other areas, I'm tough enough to solo). I also only reached about half-way through the tournament mission where you fight increasingly harder groups of monsters, but I've only tried it once (without knowing what I was walking into) and didn't really enjoy it so I probably won't make too much of an effort there.

So what do I do next? There is still a huge amount left in the base game but recently when I've been back there I haven't really enjoyed it that much, although trying new areas could change that. I probably can (and really should) get myself through the main quest at least. Also it could be good to recalibrate my in-game goals away from completing story lines and into finding sky-shards (I still need skill points for dual wielding) and/or collecting more/better pieces from some sets I'm interested in. I'm not ready for a new character and while I'm not a proper role-player I don't want to turn this one into a full-on criminal by doing the Dark Brotherhood or Thieves' Guild. I walked through some of Craglorn but there are too many multiplayer areas.

All of which is to say I might be buying Morrowind soon and heading to Vvardenfell. The thought is quite exciting :)

The Argument Chamber / Re: NZ General Election 2017
« on: September 22, 2017, 09:27:34 AM »
Ok, I've heard a bit about him. He seems like an opinionated antagonistic blowhard, who is sometimes completely wrong and inappropriate, like the NK thing, but also is often right in diagnosing usually low-level problems and presents what would be the ideal solution except that they are realistically implausible and unworkable - banning cats being a perfect example. I hadn't realised that he'd formed a political party, but I wouldn't be surprised if your prediction comes true although not sure I'd like it much.

I can't believe Winston's still going on! I saw a news story the other day and he looked like he always has doing what he's always done.

Movies & TV / Re: bladerunner 2049
« on: September 21, 2017, 08:01:43 AM »
atmosphere, the performances, dialogue and musical score

I agree that these help make it a great film, and that without them it would be trite. It is one of the few films I would describe as "beautiful" and I have watched it as a purely sensory experience. Some of it is a bit heavy-handed, but passable because of the style. But without the story and themes it would be much less memorable.

I'm conflicted on Ridley Scott. I've listened to his director's commentary on three great films, Alien, Blade Runner and Gladiator, and one not-so-great film, Robin Hood (which is not terrible, and has some really good and interesting moments), and probably also Kingdom of Heaven although I can't remember that. My conclusion from those three movies was that Ridley Scott doesn't understand what he made. Among the excessive boring comments on the technical details of production or the politics and economics of the business is some interesting stuff about design and cinematography. He is a brilliant visual artist, which is understandable from his background. But anytime he touches on character, narrative, themes, etc., he just seems ignorant of the great art he created - and yet he's done it at least 3 times, and in patches numerous other times.

I will actually read reviews and spoilers and may decide to watch it if I get a chance, although that definitely won't be in the cinema. I'm not the kind of person to shout "they ruined it!" and reject something completely, and I can take a sequel on its own merits.

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