General Discussion

Started by Emily, March 10, 2019, 08:20:31 AM

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Pick your selection for the most brutal faceoff combatants, the top two will be the fight of the century

Vanessa Carlton's sentient and self-driving piano
7 (53.8%)
Bill Gates, but with spider legs
6 (46.2%)
The singer of the original Pokemon intro with no additional powers
4 (30.8%)
Pope Formosus in his present condition
2 (15.4%)
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, as The Thing from Fantastic Four
2 (15.4%)
The rotating crew of BBC personnel that pose as David Attenborough
4 (30.8%)
Elizabeth II, where every current object bearing her likeness may be an additional combatant
6 (46.2%)
Conor McGregor
2 (15.4%)
A crazed Theresa May, visibly bleeding from a gut wound but in posession of a light saber
3 (23.1%)
Meryl Streep with no additional powers
4 (30.8%)

Total Members Voted: 13

HumanSanity

Quote from: Luca on January 08, 2021, 06:01:07 PM
Looks like it's about that time for a sudden burst of activity
:tinyclaps:

*bows* I'll be here until I get distracted
I am juuuuuust a pony
I make mistakes from time to time

DyllonAvocado

makes the forum post channel light

Hey :)

I'll be taking a break from Discord cause when I rejoined after a couple days I got really nervous and just couldn't take it again. So until I'm perfectly ready I'll imitate a talking mongoose and live within the walls of this topic baking y'all yummy cakes! ^_^

A short and gentle confession I wanna get off my chest is every time I've heard references to a particular website it made me uneasy and got progressively more painful each time I heard it. I then felt largely unincluded and like I was missing out on something and once even considered rejoining the website, despite being constantly reminded of ways that it hurt me when I thought about it. But as wise people have told me, I don't gotta do that.

Please know that I adore every one of your souls and I am proud to call you lovely tea dragons my friends  :purpleheart:
Y'all mean the  :planet: to me
Dyllon!

There'#039s a light inside your soul that'#039s still shining in the cold, and the truth - the promise in our hearts
Don'#039t forget, I'#039m with you in the dark :)

Emily

Hey Dyll 💚

I'm glad that you're posting here, because this was where I retreated to when discord was making me feel extremely anxious as well, and I just hung out here until I felt better again.

I don't blame you for feeling the way you admit in your confession. We're hoping to provide that extra separation so that you can just mute the floors in the admin tower and not worry about it too much. Obviously a lot of our people are still coming in from that place, so there's going to be a lot of discussion about it. But one thing I'm really happy about over the past few months is that there's been more and more of that separation, people are just happy to hang out and be friends, and I think that's a good thing.

I adore you too <3 and I'm happy that you're here.

Luca

HELLO DYLL

I'M SO HAPPY TO HAVE MORE REASONS TO POST ON THE FORUM

WE JUST PASSED THE MOST POSTS SINCE 2011

HYPER EMOTE

DyllonAvocado

Em! Luca!  :purpleheart: :purpleheart:


Thanks Em, that means a lot really :) I'm really grateful that my reaction to it has been taken with love. I'm also grateful that things are being done, because the way seeing references to it makes me feel is not healthy for me



Dyllon!

There'#039s a light inside your soul that'#039s still shining in the cold, and the truth - the promise in our hearts
Don'#039t forget, I'#039m with you in the dark :)

DyllonAvocado

Dyllon!

There'#039s a light inside your soul that'#039s still shining in the cold, and the truth - the promise in our hearts
Don'#039t forget, I'#039m with you in the dark :)

Emily

Quote from: DyllonAvocado on July 14, 2021, 08:47:08 AM
I love you guys <3

*hugs*

What do you think of potatoes, young Dyll? I wish to know your potatoiest thoughts.

DyllonAvocado

They cute and super good with ketchup
Dyllon!

There'#039s a light inside your soul that'#039s still shining in the cold, and the truth - the promise in our hearts
Don'#039t forget, I'#039m with you in the dark :)

DyllonAvocado

So my recent break lasted five days, I don't know why or how I thought that was enough.

Last night was pretty bad for me emotionally and this is the first time I've gotten out of bed since like 7 in the afternoon yesterday. Needless to say, I can't keep projecting my traumas on other people and I need to seek therapy and focus on my mental health. I really don't want to have a negative impact on anyone so I'm gonna try my best to stay away from the discord server until I am okay, which won't be easy cause I adore you all and I'll miss you guys. If I'm doing things right, I won't stop by for a bit.

You can always dm me on discord if you'd like! Talking makes things better :)
Dyllon!

There'#039s a light inside your soul that'#039s still shining in the cold, and the truth - the promise in our hearts
Don'#039t forget, I'#039m with you in the dark :)

Emily

Quote from: DyllonAvocado on July 25, 2021, 10:08:38 AM
So my recent break lasted five days, I don't know why or how I thought that was enough.

Last night was pretty bad for me emotionally and this is the first time I've gotten out of bed since like 7 in the afternoon yesterday. Needless to say, I can't keep projecting my traumas on other people and I need to seek therapy and focus on my mental health. I really don't want to have a negative impact on anyone so I'm gonna try my best to stay away from the discord server until I am okay, which won't be easy cause I adore you all and I'll miss you guys. If I'm doing things right, I won't stop by for a bit.

You can always dm me on discord if you'd like! Talking makes things better :)
I went through a period where something about Discord just gave me nonstop anxiety. I couldn't get through it, it just got worse the more I was on there. It helped me a lot to uninstall it from my phone and to no longer check it while I was at work or in places other than home. I found that I'd just gotten too attached to the internet and really needed some more time away from it.

If it helps, I'm certainly trying to get more things running outside of you-know-where.

Emily

So I wrote the following as a review for Road 96 on Microsoft Gamepass, but it apparently won't actually let people post reviews? Or maybe just bad reviews. Anyway, since I'm not going to buy it for Steam just to review it, I thought I'd share it here (and not make a thread, because I like Natalie's).

QuoteRoad 96 - "The Shallowest Game of a Generation"
1/5 stars

For a game so heavily marketed on being a procedurally-generated hitchhiking experience where choices matter, the only true word within that description is "hitchhiking". Road 96 is a game where you take on the role of a handful of rebellious teenagers who are fed up with the fascist dictatorship that rules the country of Petria and decide to leave by any means necessary. To do this, you will walk, hitchhike, take the bus or taxi, or steal cars.

The overarching storyline of this game is a badly-realised and extremely shallow observation of the political situation within Petria. You have the moustache-twirling villain of Tyrak, who will abduct teenagers to put in work camps, have his police shoot non-violent protesters, and make enigmatic evil statements with seemingly little motivation. For a fascist country, Tyrak's posters and the border wall imagery seem to pull a lot from Soviet or North Korea-style imagery, neither of which were or are fascist states. Against Tyrak is the invisible Flores, the best and last hope for the neoliberal apologists the game wants you to sympathise with, but who you never see. And then, finally, are the Brigades, pseudo-leftist revolutionaries whose storyline ultimately boils down to "is it too radical to fight back?"

Along your various trips through Petria in your attempts to escape, you'll meet many badly-written and abysmally-voiced characters. There's Zoe, the extremely-privileged actual main character of the story, who cajoles you into helping her and gets the most important role of the story despite caring the least. Then there's John, who has the only competent voice acting in the game but is trying to undermine the revolutionaries from the inside. Fanny, a cop you're forced to help even if you would never actually help cops, and her son Alex, an incredibly annoying whiz-kid, both force you into comically-bad conversation writing, where if you don't say the choice they expect, they'll respond to the option you didn't choose anyway. Finally, there's Stan and Mitch, entirely useless characters, Sonya whose pitch-shifted shrieks I dreaded every time she showed up, and Jarod, who you're supposed to sympathise with even though he only ever shows up as a raging serial killing psychopath.

The game is split into multiple vignettes, either in the modes of transportation you're using or in the locations that you stop in along the way. Each of these vignettes has one possible outcome, and will shove you toward that no matter how hard you try to avoid it. They will occasionally give you extra bits to interact with along the edges of the world, like trash cans to rifle through or safes to open, but these rely on skills rewarded to you through specific vignettes you may never get. I ended my first (and only) playthrough only having the ability to make intuitive connections in what people were saying, extra energy, and the "lucky star", which allows you to open trash cans and gives you better odds on percentage chance options. And I imagine there's a chance I could have ended with even fewer options. There's really no reason not to have multiple opportunities to get these extra skills through different scenes, but that would require competent game design.

The most telling aspect of this game came at the very end, when during the credits I saw more people on the marketing team than on the development team. There is, somehow, a huge following for this game. This more than anything compelled me to play all the way through to make sure I wasn't missing anything because I couldn't imagine how people could enjoy this. Instead, all I got was lousy writing, false choices (seriously, just make it a visual novel, it's fine to not have choices if you're not interested in following through with them), the worst voice acting I've ever seen in a game, and the feeling that it could have been good if developed by anyone else.

Natalie

You can make a thread. :P  I wonder if I should have just made a general reviews thread instead.

Do you think it's a failing of a "make your own choices" game when the choices don't necessarily align with the player's ideals? You mentioned being forced into helping a cop as an example of frustrating writing, and I think that speaks to an interesting aspect of these CYOA-influenced games where people tend to want to self-insert and view the choices as theirs rather than the character's. I'm not sure where I'd land on this, whether it's the intent of the writers for the player to identify with the decisions or not.

Emily

I think a CYOA game where choices reflect who the character is instead of who you as the player are are totally fine! One of my favourites in the genre is actually The Wolf Among Us by Telltale, and you have enough wiggle room in that to make your character either a violent irritable detective or a slightly less violent irritable detective. And it works because the character is fully realised and well written.

The major issue with Road 96's choices, I think, is that they don't fulfill either option. They obviously don't let you do anything you want as a player, but they also completely lose sight of the fact that your characters are so angry and hopeless in the face of their country's totalitarian dictatorship that they're getting out. So while you're in a scene with the Brigades, you are automatically on their side. While you're around the liberals, you talk about the virtues of voting. And while you're around cops, you fully cooperate no matter what. It's so meandering and confused that it just doesn't end up saying anything at all.

And that's so annoying for a game where the central conflict is extremely political (or has the potential to be). It's marketed as such a choice-heavy game where the things you say really matter to the world and affect things that are happening, but absolutely all of that is untrue. You only make a difference by nudging the final one-of-three endings to a higher probability by spraypainting campaign posters.

One of the surprisingly few negative reviews of Road 96 said it's just a visual novel that lied about the type of game it is, and I think that's ultimately true. You can walk around, you have a very small list of actions you can do, but ultimately you have zero control or choice over what happens. It's crazy to me that No Man's Sky was dismantled for lying about what was possible in the game, when this game has done just as much but was game of the year material for a majority of its players.

Emily

Hello everyone, I compiled this list for a blog elsewhere and thought it would be fun to share here. It's split into two separate lists, books I've read for uni and books I've read in off-time for fun:

Books I've read for uni in no particular order:

  •     Beowulf
  •     Hildebrandslied
  •     Cú Chulainn
  •     The Völsunga Saga
  •     Nibelungenlied
  •     Parzival - Wolfram von Eschenbach
  •     The Faerie Queene - Edmund Spencer
  •     Troilus and Criseyde - Chaucer
  •     Morte D'Arthur - Thomas Mallory
  •     William Shakespeare*
  •     Gulliver's Travels, A Modest Proposal, short stories - Jonathan Swift
  •     Javanese Gentry - Umar Kayam
  •     Dumb Luck - Vũ Trọng Phụng
  •     White Tiger - Aravind Adiga
  •     Untouchable - Mulk Raj Anand
  •     Fantomina - Eliza Haywood
  •     Things Fall Apart - Chinua Achebe
  •     Purple Hibiscus - Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche
  •     Darkness at Noon - Arthur Koestler
  •     The Female Quixote - Charlotte Lennox
  •     Romance of the Forest - Ann Radcliffe
  •     Tenant of Wildfell Hall - Anne Bronte
  •     Bleak House - Charles Dickens
  •     Dracula - Bram Stoker
  •     The Neverending Story - Michael Ende
  •     The Grimm Brothers' Fairy Tales
  •     Kiss of the Fur Queen - Tomson Highway
  •     Monkey Beach - Eden Robinson
  •     Noopiming - Leanne Betasamosake Simpson
  •     Medicine Walk - Richard Wagamese
  •     Soucoyant - David Chariandy
  •     The In-Between World of Vikram Lall - M. G. Vassanji
  •     The Divine Ryans - Wayne Johnston
  •     All My Puny Sorrows - Miriam Toews
  •     The Book of Negroes - Lawrence Hill
  •     The Handmaid's Tale, Moral Disorder - Margaret Atwood
  •     Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus - Mary Shelley
  •     The Scholar's Guide - Pedro Alfonso
  •     Poetry by Me'ir of Norwich, Marie de France, Berechiah HaNakdan
  •     The Dead - James Joyce
  •     Waiting for Godot - Samuel Beckett
  •     Spreading the News - Lady Gregory
  •     Playboy of the Western World - John Synge
  •     Translations - Brian Friel
  •     Angela's Ashes - Frank McCourt
  •     Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
  •     Shambleau, No Woman Born - C.L. Moore
  •     The Left Hand of Darkness - Ursula K. Le Guin
  •     Woman on the Edge of Time - Marge Piercy
  •     Adulthood Rites - Octavia Butler
  •     Fun Home - Alison Bechdel
  •     Clade - James Bradley
  •     The Tiger Flu - Larissa Lai
  •     The Annual Migration of Clouds - Premee Mohamed
  •     Greenwood - Michael Christie
  •     The School for Scandal, The Critic - Richard Sheridan
  •     The Beggar's Opera, Polly - John Gay
  •     Jonathan Wild - Henry Fielding
  •     The Rape of the Lock, The Temple of Fame - Alexander Pope
  •     The Iliad - trans. Alexander Pope
  •     The Way of the World - William Congreve
  •     A Sentimental Journey - Laurence Sterne
  •     The Belle's Stratagem - Hannah Cowley

* The Tempest, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Othello, Hamlet, MacBeth, Romeo and Juliet, King Lear, Anthony and Cleopatra, Richard II, Henry IV Parts 1 & 2, Henry V, Henry VI Parts 1, 2, & 3, Richard III

There are more, of course, but these are all I can find record of and remember well enough to list.

For fun:

   
  • The Ocean at the End of the Lane - Neil Gaiman
  • Shadow & Claw - Gene Wolfe
  • Sword & Citadel - Gene Wolfe
  • The Last Wish - Andrzej Sapkowski
  • Sword of Destiny - Andrzej Sapkowski
  • Blood of Elves - Andrzej Sapkowski
  • Time of Contempt - Andrzej Sapkowski
  • Baptism of Fire - Andrzej Sapkowski
  • Tower of Swallows - Andrzej Sapkowski
  • The Collapsing Empire - John Scalzi
  • The Consuming Fire - John Scalzi
  • The Last Emperox - John Scalzi
  • Too Like the Lightning - Ada Palmer
  • Seven Surrenders - Ada Palmer
  • The Will to Battle - Ada Palmer
  • Perhaps the Stars - Ada Palmer
  • Gardens of the Moon - Steven Erikson

If there's any interest, I'll group/categorise these and give recommendations from the list.