Archive for the ‘ Video Games ’ Category

Age of Windows; Age of Suck

In my opinion, Age of Empires; Age of Kings was probably the pinnacle of the “Age of” series.  It’s the best RTS I’ve ever played.  Starcraft I just never could get into and Warcraft was neither immersive or intuitive.  I haven’t played the Total War Games so I don’t know anything about those.  However the Age of Empires series is something I grew up with.

And being developed by Microsoft The Age of Empires Series will last far into the future as long as there are windows OS’s right?  right?

Wrong.  Windows Vista and to an even greater extent Windows 7, both break the graphics of the game.  The break renders the ground textures into what has been called toxic waste.  Now I know windows doesn’t have the best track record with games.  But you would think if their own profits were at risk they would you know patch it or something.

The process to fix this is something that would end with most people calling text support. And even more complicated it differs depending on which OS your using.

To fix;
right-click the icon and select properties
open the compatibility tab
Set compatibility to XP service pack 2

And then possibly;
check run in 256 color
check run in 640×480
check disable visual themes
check disable desktop composition
check disable display scaling on high DPI settings


right-click the desktop
select personalize (windows vista) or screen resolution(windows 7)

(vista)select display settings
select 16 bit in the color tab

(Windows 7)select advance settings
select monitor
set colors to 16 bit

If that doesn’t work alt tab with the game open change it back to 32 bit and then back to 16 bit until it works.

Do you see the problem here? but whatever it is fixable and I get to play my game.


A Few Mini rants

I figure I may do this often but instead of thinking up like 500 words on one subject I’ll do a few small rants of no more than a paragraph or two. looking back over the other posts I notice this is getting kinda angry and I don’t want just anger rants. That in mind I thought a couple of rants praising stuff i like.

Think Positive!

Team Fortress 2

Yahtzee once said that if you had “been remotely interested in online shooters in the last decade” (said in 2008) “you already know everything about team fortress and TF2 is basically that with all the corners cut off and polished to a mirror shine.” seeing as i spent most of 1995-2007 playing a Sony console or gamecube i knew nothing of the desolate wasteland that had become PC gaming. It is still that but like the people in fallout they built several small towns. Some are well run if a bit sinister (steam) and some are raider filled trash dumps (games for windows LIVE).

So with little working knowledge of online shooters I jump in.  Now online I have played halo, I have played call of duty, I have played unreal tournament. team fortress 2 is so much better in so many ways.  And maybe I’m wrong but the population of people I would kill in real life for being totally retarded is ridiculously lower.  I’ve had conversations about aboriginal natives while playing this game.  the classes let you know what you’re suppose to do without being too easy and are deep enough that with enough practice you can become an unstoppable machine.  And thankfully unlike some other games not having disposable income isn’t a hindrance. you can buy all the special weapons if you got the cash or you can just get them in-game for playing. 

After typing this (if child will let me) I’ll probably play it.

Some anime

Netflix (I’ll rant at some point)  recently enlarged their anime portfolio.  Being the gigantic nerd that I am, I am ecstatic! ^w^.  recently butler black and ken-ichi; the mightiest disciple have been watched.   they also have the entire inuyasha series (again will rant) it’s in japanese with english subtitles.  Now I don’t mind this and it’s probably because only like half the episodes were ever dubbed in english but it is weird getting use to new voices for familiar characters.i’ve seen some other stuff I’ll get around to.  I’ll probably rant at some point.

Ken ichi is good in that it’s about fighting and seems like some with a black belt actually advised on the show.  the characters are solid and unlike DBZ instead of starting with the most powerful fighter and having  to make stronger and stronger enemies until you have a god as a main character that’s has to be nerfed at the beginning of the next spinoff it starts off with a know-nothing and progress at mild pace from there.  it’s good in a way I haven’t seen since arc 2 of bleach.

black butler is grim dark and set in Victorian england.  not a lot of action but one hell of a butler.  Lots of subdued supernatural which i like.  i hate when there are giant demons walking around causing havoc and everyone seems to be looking tin the wrong direction at the wrong time every time.  It’s really disturbing and usually lamp shaded or just ignored.  suspension of disbelief and all that.  this however takes the better approach of everything supernatural being just believable enough that yeah if you saw the aftermath you wouldn’t think is was a giant demon dog.

also rugrats seasons were added.  I’ve been forced to reverse my childhood opinion wild thornberries was a better show.  They’re both still okay, but WT is cleaner, better written, and more interesting.  RR gets too stale after awhile which is clear because they kept adding new characters (in order; susie, dil, chuckie’s step sister).  and all grown up is still an annoying pile of failure in my opinion.

Social Games

Farmville, Cityville, Mafia Wars, Treasure Isle, Cupcake corner, World of Vampires, Hotel City, restaurant City, backyard monsters, the list goes on and on.  They are the newest and most popular form of Video Games, Casual or Social Games.  To Normal People, a fun pastime while killing time on facebook.  To gamers either the beginning of the end for Video Games as they know it or less dramatically really stupid little games that your girlfriend wanted you to play so you could send her knick knack 4.

I fall into group 2.  I’ve come to despise the cheeky the little things.  They are perfect for the little social butterflies that populate Facebook and such.  But for more gameplay centered gamers they are crap and stonewall you in a manner that is insulting.

See alot of these games have this thing where you need so many friends or need to get more friends.  If you are say the popular girl or boy in highschool and you have 500 friends then easystreet.  Chances are at least 100 of them play the game.  And even if they don’t you can text like 20 people lower down in the social pecking order to have them play so they can accept your request.

But for the Hardcore Gamer crowd getting friends in this manner is harder.  For first Gamers tend to gravitate to each other.  Playing Halo and madden doesn’t make you a gamer.  Playing a small library of First person Shooters and RPGs and various other genres and completing them all and spending some serious time in multiplayer makes you a gamer.  Anyway there aren’t many of these people but they are around and they find each other and hang together.  they don’t normally socialize like others.  Maybe this is their fault maybe not but in the end if they have a farmville game chances are their facebook friend list is very small. 

So getting to these goals of “Have 25 friends” is hard.  My friends list tops out just above 100. mostly this is family.  We all live pretty separate from each other So facebook is useful for keeping connected and up to date with each other’s lives.  Farmville asking me to have 25 friends is insulting because not being able to complete says three things;

a)you don’t have enough friends because you’re unpopular

b)you’re friends suck because they don’t all play farmville

c)you’re using facebook incorrectly you need more friends even if they are total strangers. 

I don’t want to interact with total strangers and if I do I want to do it on a Team Fortress 2 server where I can stick a rocket up their ass if they get on my nerves.  I especially don’t want to harvest and water their crops and I don’t give a crap about their status updates. 

Now hypothetically I could just hide their status updates and forget about them.  I completed my quest right?  Well one-two punch from farmville is rewarding my proper use of facebook I get a mill.  BUT to start using this mill I need 5 pieces of paper, 5 wood, 5 mules, and 5 shovels.  These things have to be gifted.  So now I have to ask the people whose post I just hid for stuff.  If I hid their post it’s a safe bet they hid either of us asking the other for stuff becomes a problem.

Now the game I’m talking about is actually cityville.  I’ve never played farmville and I never will.  but my girlfriend needed zoning permits and city seals. 

I’m not about to say these game shouldn’t exsist.  Helping out friends through games legitimizes the good effects these games have.  But erecting wall to get through or around is hurting what these games offer.  I’ve seen really cool stuff in some screen shots for these games and I’d like to do some cool stuff myself I just don’t have enough friends.