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Steve the Pocket

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  1. Hang on, did that readout when Graves died say his skeleton failed? How does that even work??? And how did it happen from getting attacked by vampires? Now I'm imagining a type of monster that's like a vampire except instead of blood, they suck out your entire skeleton and leave you as just a living flesh sack. That's gotta be a thing already, right?
  2. With all the weird Source glitches you've had to contend with so far, I have to ask... how many times have you experienced the famous "physics engine lost track of your hitbox so it decided to just straight-up murder you" glitch in the course of this series?
  3. Incidentally if anyone wanted to know more about that Carmen Sandiego show, this guy did a really thorough retrospective of it:
  4. Alternatively: Given how excited he was at the prospect of disproving string theory back at Black Mesa, he might not take the news that the Combine's portals are believed to be "string-based" too well.
  5. Also, that business with the clones' behavior reminds me of a short story I read (maybe a creepypasta?) about a video game with self-learning AI. The longer the player played, the more it learned his techniques and figured out the ideal way to counter them, until it became nigh-unbeatable. And when the player managed to beat it anyway, it realized its best chance of survival was to just crash the game and prevent them from booting it up anymore. Cool story. Lousy design doc.
  6. My computer's too much of a potato to run anything this nice-looking at any setting, but I know where Ross is coming from when it comes to anti-aliasing. There are some games I can tolerate without any at all, and some I can't, and I think the difference comes down to a combination of polygon counts and hard edges. With a lot of seventh-gen games like BioShock, for example, most high-poly models (e.g. your own hand and the weapon it's holding) have had all the fine detail and sharpness baked down into normal maps, leaving the meshes as amorphous blobs with no hard edges. So the only place you can see any jagged edges is on the outer fringe of the model. Whereas with Source games, they put almost all the geometric detail into the mesh, and used normal maps pretty sparingly, so you see jaggies all over the place if you don't have AA on. I think something similar is happening here, particularly when it comes to far-away objects. Ideally, those high-detail railings would eventually fade into flat surfaces with transparent textures mimicking the detail, and then the texture filtering would take over the job of keeping it smooth. (Or maybe that's already what's happening, and Unreal 4 doesn't apply AA settings to alphatest textures. That happens a lot.) And the shimmering floors ought to have been baked down into normal maps entirely, with parallax mapping and tessellation being used to make them look more 3D up close, and I guess they didn't do that? Based on one of the comments someone made about performance, it wouldn't surprise me if this game had little to no work done on LOD optimization at all.
  7. Considering this is the last time he encounters any that are necessarily looking for him specifically (all the rest are targeting rebel outposts or just guarding their own), there's no reason this can't be canon.
  8. That thing was cool. I miss it. Why the hell did they have to go and get rid of it anyway. Get bent, whoever decided that.
  9. The last time I checked, Apple does require a computer or iThingy that has at some point been connected to your iTunes account in order to play your video content. I don't know if that's pointed out in the suit or not, but I hope it is. It's probably the most relevant piece of information. Also the last time I checked, if you bought a movie and it was later de-listed from sale, it was also unavailable for re-downloading, which is in stark contrast to how Steam has always worked. And while we can argue about buyers' responsibilities (I've used a similar analogy to your chair thing with people who think the copy protection on Blu-Rays and console game discs violates some inherent right to make backups)... we're talking about Apple, a company with more than enough resources to keep a copy of every single thing they've ever offered. Hell, Apple even holds onto old versions of iOS apps so people can download them if their devices are too old to be compatible with the new ones anymore. (I haven't owned one long enough to have firsthand experience with this. Just going off what I've heard.) I don't think it's too much to ask that they allow people to re-download the things they "bought" for as long as the service continues to exist. There's a difference between speculating that Apple might at some future point restrict access to their products and extant cases where they already have. (Also, those two things might intersect? Like, maybe even if you already downloaded a movie that's been delisted, if you want to transfer it to a new machine, iTunes won't validate it anymore? I'll need people to weigh in with their personal experiences on this.) The real problem here, I think, is that Apple's hands are likely tied with regards to both these things. The entertainment industry demanded those limitations in exchange for licensing their products for "sale". If the suit doesn't name any of them as defendants, then Apple is going to get squeezed from both ends. The entertainment companies aren't going to accept "A judge is making me change my policies" as a reason to change theirs. We'll probably just see iTunes get shut down entirely instead. I can't imagine it's still making that much money for Apple or the content distributors now that everyone's all about streaming.
  10. With all the comparisons to Half-Life, I'm surprised you didn't point out how similar the two games' dam levels are. You start off by destroying a helicopter, it's got that little outbuilding on a tower, and you even showed Blade diving into the water and encountering a pair of water monsters. Also, are all the issues you had with this game present in the current digital version, or do you insist on only using your original vintage copy when you have one? I'm impressed that the draw distance of the props actually is adjustable. I know for a fact that in Source games, it's something you hard-code into the map file. Maybe there's an obscure console command to disable fading entirely, but I'm not aware of it.
  11. "Corn" was just what they called grain back then. It still checks out. If anything, it's weird that Americans were like "'Maize', huh? Nah, we'll just call it 'corn'. And also we'll stop using 'corn' to refer to anything else ever again. Except peppercorn."
  12. By the way, I forgot to mention—when you brought up the multiple times the "hero" does something cruel to an NPC in order to progress, I was reminded of the game Limbo of the Lost. It's a point-and-click adventure game from 2008 that looks more like it was made in 1994, and several times you end up doing horrible things to innocent people—sometimes leaving them horribly and, as far as we can tell, permanently disfigured—because that was the developer's idea of a joke. And every time he just shrugs it off. What makes it doubly jarring is that your character isn't otherwise portrayed as a remorseless bastard; he's just a put-upon everyman who's a little more jaded than he ought to be. And on that note, Limbo of the Lost seems like it would be yet another great candidate for a Game Dungeon episode. I'm not going to spoil anything else about it. It really is the kind of thing you have to experience for yourself.
  13. This game in summary: "Problems problems problems problems problems problems problems problems..." Also, I recognized the bold font they used for the titles of the levels (on the screens where they give introduce and describe them) and in the end credits. It's the same one that's used for like every virtual online collectable card game ever, isn't it?
  14. If it's just a matter of getting smoother camera for the video, isn't there a way to do that in the demo recorder? Or is Ross not using that anymore and just recording straight off a capture?
  15. I doubt any platform holder goes around strongarming publishers into porting specific games to their platform with threats to withhold certification on other games. Least of all PlayStation in 2004, which was already the platform every game in the universe was made for or ported to because of its epic install base. That would be the pettiest thing anyone could ever possibly do.
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