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Everything posted by Hajile

  1. Exactly. You cannot run a country on "Yay Scotland!" I'd say that the case Salmond has presented doesn't hold water, but that would imply that he has, in fact, presented a case at all.
  2. This is an interesting debate and a potentially fascinating referendum, so it's been very disappointing to see a large portion of it degenerate into nationalistic "Fuck the English" nonsense that heavily implies that Scotland has never seen anything constructive from the union. The UK is not some totalitarian regime which has held them in thrall for centuries and has only ever taken things from them. Like they'd do any better and the perfect, flawless wee bonny Scotland would be a prosperous and plentiful utopia without the big old meanies from the UK taking all their stuff and keeping them in penury. That confidence trickster Salmond has already shown himself to be a corrupt, delusional bully, more sinister and unsavoury than anyone in Westminster, but he's got half of Scotland so stirred up in a jingoistic miasma they won't realise until it's too late that his position is all wishes and rainbows. Half my family is Scottish and I've spent most of my life listening to them bitch and moan and pin all of their problems and failings as a nation on the English. A small part of me almost wishes they'd get a yes vote, just to see the looks on their faces as they watch their country goes tits up.
  3. Ah. So that's what it looks like when an industry too stupid and arrogant to know better continues to cling to a technology that the majority of their customers have already rejected. "Roll up, roll up! New 3D, Not quite as shit as old 3D! And still nothing like as good as 2D! But who cares about that! Look at the shiny shiny!"
  4. It should also be noted that 3D has a terrible effect the well-being of the performers. Famously, the necessities involved in shooting the Hobbit in 3D almost put Sir Ian McKellen off movie acting permanently. There is of course the main reason why film studios continue to push 3D in cinemas - attendance levels are way, way down and it can cost up to twice as much to see a film in 3D, so movies can be seen by half as many people now and still make the same amount of money. Look at the gross for Lord of the Rings versus The Hobbit: The Fellowship of the Ring - worldwide gross $871,530,324, budget $93 million The Two Towers - worldwide gross $926,047,111, budget $94 million The Return of the King - worldwide gross $1,119,929,521, budget $94 million An Unexpected Journey - worldwide gross $1,017,003,568, budget $200 million The Desolation of Smaug - worldwide gross $958,366,855, budget $225 million Cost of production is going up (the first Hobbit film cost almost as much as all three Rings movies combined!), but gross is staying relatively consistent. Hobbit is much less successful, much less of a cultural phenomenon, and its pop culture penetration is much narrower and more modest, but you wouldn't notice that for the movie gross. 3D is a cheap and lazy way of bolstering a film's profits artificially. When faced with a choice between going to the effort of actually making a film that more people want to see or just slapping 3D on it and rolling it out, which do you think the majority of execs and producers are going to go for? They're far too busy snorting coke and getting blown by starlets who want their first big break to decide on the former. That's why I appreciate directors like Chris Nolan. TDKR was a bit bloated and stodgy, but I can respect a man who has so far utterly rejected any attempt to put his films in 3D. Execs have tried to pressure him into using 3D in every film of his since The Prestige, and he has refused every time because he understands that it does not enhance films. Conversely, Jackson has seemingly been dazzled by dead-end technology like 3D and HFR, and the Hobbit movies have suffered because of it.
  5. 3D is a tawdry and crass gimmick, which makes movies for which it is employed seem all the tackier and more unworthy for its inclusion. It is used to the detriment of films. It is not some magnificent leap forward in film-making technique. Such things are universally relevant to all genres of movie. Can you imagine they would ever re-release Schindler's List in 3D? Of course not. It would look hugely sleazy and exploitative and there would probably be boycotts and protests. Would they ever bother to re-release The Shawshank Redemption or Mr. Holland's Opus in 3D? No. Because it would add nothing to already-great films, it would only detract from their greatness. It has been shown to cause migraines and nausea, and no studies were done regarding its long-term effects prior to the implementation of the newest version of the technology in screens the world over. Still haven't been done in any significant way either, which is especially sinister and irresponsible when you realise that it's marketed primarily towards children and their still-developing eyes. Who knows the ill effects it is causing as we speak? Not the movie studios, that's for sure. They don't give enough of a shit to even research what they're shoving onto people.
  6. The only thing newsworthy about that story is the fact that people continue to think that it's newsworthy or "a sign" of something amiss, even though it happens, without exception, to every MMO ever when it hits this stage of its life. I'd almost say Massively should know better, but they're Massively. Giving idiots ammunition to use to try to tear something down is kinda what they do. And oh look, the imbeciles in their comments section have, right on cue, jumped on it with all their end-is-nigh histrionics. I'm starting to think the internet just isn't for me.
  7. After a mine-month holiday from MMOs, I have (possibly foolishly, considering the fact that I was out) been delving back into a few. I think that's how I'm going to play them from now one - dip in every once in a while, then banish them for a long stretch to allow a nice backlog of new content to accumulate. Currently I've been playing Secret World, SWTOR and Final Fantasy XIV, which are pretty much the three best ones on the market right now. I have a bunch of others installed, including Rift, ESO and WoW, etc, but they don't get much of a look in. Recently installed LOTRO again too. Quit playing that entirely before Wildermore released. When I get to l100 I might post my thoughts on it in its current state. It's surprisingly not entirely negative. Only almost entirely negative.
  8. Turbine weren't overly concerned about people being "too attached" to their characters when they decided to implement massive overhauls that nobody asked for or wanted to the fundamental structure of each class, so that excuse is BS. They haven't updated the character models because a) there's no way for them to spin it into store items, ergo no way for them to make money from it, and b ) if they can't make money from it they can't be arsed doing it, period.
  9. The four I have on rotation at the moment are: FInal Fantasy XIV The Secret World Star Wars - The Old Republic The Elder Scrolls Online. I rounded out my choices with World of Warcraft, because it's the daddy, always has been and is so for a very good reason.
  10. Trailers always show films in a positive light, and seeing this really hammered home all the things they got right, and there is a lot they got right. The naysayers and their melodramatic histrionic warbling can fuck right off if they think there is nothing positive to say about them. If the film-makers had kept their focus and their integrity and not got so mired in self-indulgence, these movies could have been magnificent. The cast are, with one or two exceptions, wonderful. Most of the dwarves are spot on, and they should have been given the opportunity to show their personalities more. Bard is not what I expected, but Luke Evans has done an excellent job depicting him as something other than the Proto-Aragorn he was in the books. And Lee Pace's Thranduil is absolutely dead on the money. These films should have featured much more of them and much less of tacked on, incongruous and insipid girly elf Tauriel. Damn. Imagine how good these films could have been if the script and direction had been up to the standard of the casting...
  11. Erm, elvish souls do not work that way in Middle-earth. When separated from the body, they go to the Halls of Mandos where they await redemption or reawakening in a new physical form. While it's possible - if rare - for an elvish soul to remain in Middle-earth as a ghost, this in itself is a sign of corruption and therefore vulnerability to Sauron's influence, hence his title "The Necromancer." Ergo there are no 'good' ghosts of dead elves, and certainly none who would be working in opposition to Sauron. If anything, this ghost of Celebrimbor would be a slave to him. The entire plot of this game is bunk. I'm all for people telling untold stories set within Tolkien's legendarium, filling in the wider history with stories of their own. I'd just prefer it if they weren't complete bollocks that flies in the face of all we know about Middle-earth.
  12. I don't even know how a logical mind in control of itself can leap the gap from "Do your own fucking research" (which Is what I said, in case you weren't paying attention) to that. Are you sure you're not heavily medicated right now? You're becoming even more rambling and incoherent by the post, and I'm not going to engage with you any more. You're either taking the piss or you're an imbecile.
  13. The answers you are asking for are within easy reach. Do your own damn homework.
  14. Oh for Christ's sake. You've got Google. Use it. Search for "Fox News Factual Errors" if you insist on specific examples. It'll take you all of eight seconds to type. Even less to ctrl-c/ctrl-v. Then you can stop pretending there aren't hundreds of examples of the things you claim don't exist. You're making yourself look like an idiot.
  15. Moria, mainly because the game has never received a proper expansion since. It's the only genuine full-sized expansion the game has ever received - everything else has basically been a dressed up content patch.
  16. Hajile

    U14 Beta

    That's smack bang in the middle of Gondor. "Western?" And Dol Amroth looks like it's recycling heavily from Annuminas. They've given it a slightly greyer palette and changed the heads on the towers, but other than that it's almost a carbon copy, only far less impressive. Despite the fact that Annuminas was designed, modelled and released years ago. I'd ask "is that the best they can do?" but we all know the answer to that by now.
  17. Sounds like this is going to get very messy and embarrassing for WB/Saul Zaentz. It appears there's a mound of evidence confirming their knowledge of the terms of the contract and their complicity in violating those terms, so they're doing what they can to get the court to refuse to accept it. If that's the case then there's nowhere for them to go other than to settle. They certainly have no position to attack from and their counter-suit seems spurious and flimsy. No wonder they're rushing Shadows of Mordor out the door. They probably have no idea what rights they will have to surrender as part of the settlement. That will almost certainly be in the hands of the Estate in how far they intend to push before accepting terms.
  18. In the last trailer I saw the protagonist make someone's head explode, a la Scanners. The Hero. Used his Wraith powers. To make an orc's head explode. Nuff said. I hope everyone who buys it enjoys playing their silly Not-Middle-earth game.
  19. So that's, what, ONE DAY after the ruling was announced and it's already being abused? Says it all, really. This particular brand of nonsense needs to be stamped out immediately, before the truly corrupt get their mitts on it. By that point it'll be utterly impossible to reverse.
  20. Hajile


    To indulge the tangent for fact fans and trivia affectionados, the most interesting thing I've read about American accents is that the accent you hear the most on TV and in film, and the one that is taught to people learning the language, doesn't exist in reality. It's called General American or Standard American English, and it's effectively the American equivalent of British Received Pronunciation (otherwuise knows as BBC English) - a neutral accent designed to be clear and easily understood by everyone. It's close to a Midwestern accent in the same way that British RP is close to, and is based on, Estuary English. American newsanchors are trained in General American, and it's part of the syllabus of many acting schools, so it has become the defacto accent of a lot of American visual media, including video games. It's also used a lot in Canada, which is why Canadian TV often sounds the same as US TV to non-North American ears and why Canadian actors can seamlessly integrate into US media. It's also why it stands out so much when you do hear regional accents in US film and TV, and why actors like Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson are so unusual because they tend to keep their home accents in whatever they appear in. It's a lot like Sean Connery keeping his Scottish accent while playing Russians, Egyptians, Irishmen, etc. US Politicians mostly keep to General American too, with certain exceptions like Bush, Clinton and those within the grass-roots movements. It's why some people from outside the US are under the misconception that there are fewer American accents than there are - many of them just don't get represented very much in the media, and when they are attention is drawn to how out of place they are. Video games aren't any different - mostly General American, so when stuff like the valley girl speak in Wildstar, or the Texan accents in The Last of Us occur, it's something people notice.
  21. Hajile


    That has not been my experience. Admittedly I only have my own anecdotal evidence to go on, but I've found the online hype for both TESO and WS to be roughly comparable. There was a time where you couldn't go to the front page of any gaming website without seeing the word "cupcake." Sites like Massively, Neogaf, Escapist et al have basically treated WS like the second coming of MMOs, while the general attitude towards TESO is that it's "the next SWTOR," the narrative being that it will hang itself through its own hubris, just like SWTOR. Even though it didn't. What has not been comparable has been the concerted hype backlash conducted by forumgoers and feature-writers that has been directed against the one and not the other. One can only assume it's because WS is seen as a plucky underdog, while TESO is seen as the output of big nasty money grubbing businessmen. We all know which camp internet blowhards and forum warriors like to pitch their tents in, ergo... In any case, This thread is about Wildstar, not people's attitudes towards it. I'll give it the rest of the weekend to impress me. If I get invited to any more betas between now and launch I'll check them out, but my opinion right now is that it's cumbersome and below par, and not worth people's time.
  22. Two key points - yes, the Hobbit films have been more expensive than LOTR. A LOT more expensive. LOTR was described at the time as the biggest low-budget movie of all time, which is true because if I'm remembering my figures correctly the total budget for all three LOTR films was somewhere around $270 million. That is frankly pittance for three movies of their size. The first Hobbit film alone cost over $200 million, and I'd expect the budgets for films 2 and three to go even higher. Just let that sink in for a second. The first Hobbit movie cost almost as much to make as all three LOTR films combined. They cost a third of the price to make, so it's clear that even without adjusting for inflation (FOTR was released in 2001) the LOTR movies have been far more profitable than the Hobbit ones thus far. Also don't discount that Hobbit tickets have been on average more expensive than the LOTR ones were, thanks to all that pointless shitty 3D gimmickery. It's probably likely that in addition to being less profitable than LOTR, fewer people have seen the Hobbit films. You can tell a lot from each trilogy's market penetration. LOTR entered the public consciousness and became a cultural phenomenon. Hobbit's presence is entirely artificial and due to marketing ubiquity. All of the money and none of the soul. Things tend to get cynical when you introduce luxury to a director who has famously done his best work on a shoestring.
  23. Hajile


    Been trying this today because I finally got into the beta. What a letdown. I have absolutely no idea why TESO is getting such a hard time but Wildstar is getting a free pass. Everything TESO does badly is even worse in Wildstar. It's built on a similar system of phasing and how mobs are tagged, but in Wildstar you feel funnelled from hub to hub at a time when hubs are starting to seem old hat. Also the zones are very haphazardly laid out, with a seemingly poor eye for design or worldbuilding. It also doesn't help that the mapping and navigation that has been designed for it is so nonsensical and unintuitive that it actually makes it more difficult to find your way around. In addition, the quest text is so half-assed and poorly written that once you get to your destination you frequently have little idea what you're supposed to be doing. It's utterly riddled with quite appalling gamebreaking bugs, even at this late stage. It's extremely poorly optimised, which means that although TESO is a far better looking game, Wildstar framerates are significantly worse. The combat is neat, but nothing we haven't seen before, and in general I found the interface to be clumsy and obstructive to my gameplay. The presentation is all over the place, with no clear indication of what anything is, what it does and what it means, nothing is made clear and it often seems like the game wilfully obfuscates pertinent details to give what is an incredibly linear experience the illusion of being more free-roaming and open-ended than it is. It's also highly derivative. It does very little that's new, and it's essentially nothing more than WoW's cartoonish visuals combined with Neverwinter/Tera's combat system and SWTOR's presentation. Nothing more, nothing less. Everything it does is done better elsewhere. It's bewildering how so many people could have come to see this as the next Great White Hope of MMORPGs when nothing it does stands out from the pack. I can only assume that people saw the trailers and bought into its sense of humour, because that's literally all it has going for it. Ungainly, awkward and very very disappointing.
  24. I probably should have made it clear that I was referring to the nebulous attitude of negativity that pervades most online opinion of TESO rather than referring to Joe in particular. I enjoy his reviews. He's at least able to articulate from his perspective, even if it's a perspective I more often than not don't share. However he's susceptible to bouts of playing to his audience by blowing minor quibbles out of proportion, in the case of some of his more trivial complaints about TESO. Regarding that wider attitude of negativity, I've pointed out previously that it's more than possible to sully a good game's name to the extent that it struggles long term. This is particularly true of MMOs, and sub-based MMOs doubly. The consensus of negativity that springs up in these cases often seems like it occurs through happenstance, but is essentially a concerted and coordinated effort from likeminded trolls, which is encouraged by hit-chasing editorial leeches (mentioning no names coughmassivelycough.) They foster a feeling of camaraderie and community in bitterness and schadenfreude. They are effectively orchestrated smear campaigns against certain games or developers. As soon as a game or developer is labelled 'the enemy' by some sectors of the internet their every move is called into question and they are pilloried with such vehemence it's often been hard to believe certain comments have come from rational human beings. The latest 'enemy' to arise is TESO. Joe's review, while not guilty of these things itself, is certainly symptomatic of the growing and misleading consensus that what is actually a decent game is totally substandard in every way. And when consensus is reached, it no longer matters if the consensus is true. In the case of TESO, it's largely motivated by old complaints. People are still resentful of certain early announcements. For committing the cardinal sins of having classes, not being made by the original developers and not being enough like the single-player games on which it is based it has been sentenced to be burned at the stake by the lynch mob of online opinion. That's just straight-up petty, but unfortunately that'll be what sinks the game, not any genuine lack of quality on the game's part. Anyway, rant over, apologies for the derail.
  25. Meh, TESO is fine. It's simply the latest in a long line of video games that get an undeservedly negative shake of the stick because internet crybabies have decided that it's the next game they are going to run down. Simply because it's a big budget, high profile game that has the temerity to be - gasp! - not perfect. Or in TESO's case, because it's not developed by the original developers and had - the horror - made some concessions to make it work better as an MMORPG. That should sound familiar to anyone who was paying attention during the first six months of SWTOR. And that's all the ammunition some people need to pour a deluge of scorn on something. The horror, we must lambast it for eternity, etc etc etc. Some people decided in advance that they were not going to like TESO, they laid the groundwork for their opinions before Zenimax even opened the game up to beta and went looking for reasons to complain as soon as the doors opened. I haven't seen so many pre-emptive "is TESO going to fail?" style articles since the same people adopted the same tactics when attacking SWTOR. Meanwhile stuff like GW2 and Wildstar get a free pass because they are the little pet favourites of those same people, despite being similarly flawed. TESO is mediocre in places, yes, but when it's good it's excellent. Net result is something pretty good, and the scope of the endeavour and what it has managed to implement in time for its launch is commendable. Anyone who awards it less than a 7 on a scale of 10 is a spoiled brat.
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