Taedium Edax Rerum

If there’s a bright center of the Internet, you’re on the blog that it’s farthest from.

Posts Tagged ‘blah blah blah’

Death of Two Boxes

Posted by Yamane Ishi on June 17, 2009

Ok so here’s the story.  Way back when, launch day for the Xbox 360, I drove my arse thirty something miles to pick up my preordered Xbox-o-fun.  So I suffered through the dull launch line up and hearing about the “Red Ring of Death”, mine ran fine. The months dragged on much better games came out and I bought what I was interested in both crap and damn good titles. Then it happened, I got the dreaded ring…and then it went away. Cool I though, I got lucky. Yeah I don’t think so skippy, last October it finally happened. The ring of death killed my beloved Xbox. Oh well I had been looking at the new elite systems anyway so I bought one off Amazon, saved $60 too.  So after buying Gears of War 2 and playing co-op split screen with Doug I decided that I would look into getting the old launch system repaired. So I went online and filled out the form and had them send me a box to ship it off in. I sent it off and within a week they sent me a referb at no cost to me even though the warranty had expired two years ago. Cool I thought as I sent the referb home with Doug. For the next couple of weeks I bugged him to buy Gears and get on live which he did and we had fun beating Horde with just the two of us. So it’s been a few months since then and I’m setting in my chair playing [Prototype], good game, and the screen goes all weird on me. I can only describe it as the matrix code without the scrolling. Crap…I cycle power…Crap!!…it still there. I unplug the system and plug it back in…cool normal again. NOT…so it seems to go away after I unplug the system or let it set awhile. So I swap cables just to see and what does it do? It gives me the E47 message…great… So I go online again and fill at the form but this time I’m prepared, I got a box so I just print off the shipping label. What is really funny is that it died Saturday and I just sent it off today and I got the new Ghostbusters game in the mail yesterday….. Now I have to wait at least a week to play it. Oh well at least I don’t have to pay for this repair either; and even if I did I would.

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Posted in Games | Tagged: , , , | 4 Comments »

Designing the Mecha Monogatari RPG

Posted by Doug on May 16, 2009

What follows is a series of thoughts and design ideas for the new version of the Mecha Monogatari RPG that I am currently working on.  The gameplay mechanics are still nebulous, so don’t be surprised if very little of this makes much sense.

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Posted in Games, Traditional RPGs | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

I Just Hope They’re Not Talking About Me

Posted by Doug on April 27, 2009

The possibility exists that I might be serving as Dungeon Master for a player new to Dungeons & Dragons, and so I have been trawling the official D&D Fourth Edition forums, partly for general inspiration, and partly in the hopes of finding some nuggets of wisdom relevant to the task of DMing a new player, and partly just to pass the time.

Posts like “1001 Worst DMs to Ever Have in a Game“, while generally long and whiney, do speak to an underlying truth: some DMs, simply put, suck, and quite frequently the individuals in question are utterly unaware that they do, in fact, suck.  The worst part of it all is that as I read the comments in threads like those, I inevitably start finding descriptions that are eerily familiar, almost as if I’m looking at a mirror…

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Posted in Games, Traditional RPGs | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

To-Do List

Posted by Doug on April 21, 2009

Or: A Not Particularly Long Post Dedicated to Briefly Mentioning the Things I Really Ought to Post About Instead, But Just Lack the Motivation to Do So At Present Time.  This post is going to be almost entirely blah blah blah, so if that’s going to bother you, you might want to relive some of the glory slightly less sucky days of Taedium Edax Rerum, like those Japanese girls singing that really cheery yet incomprehensible song or something.

Serious blah blah blah follows.  You have been warned.

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Posted in Anime, Writing | Tagged: | 2 Comments »

Thoughts on the latest Final Fantasy

Posted by Doug on April 17, 2009

A hour-long playable demo of Final Fantasy XIII will be released in March, it seems, and having been a Final Fantasy fanboy since forever (well, at least since Final Fantasy II on the SNES…which was really Final Fantasy IV, but nevermind that right now…) I have been awaiting more information on this next installment of Squenix’s flagship series.

But not in the same way I might have a decade ago.

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Posted in Console RPGs, Games | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

An TWO Annoying IncidentS in a Good Game

Posted by Doug on April 7, 2009

I finally broke down and bought Star Ocean: The Last Hope the other day, and it is wonderfully addicting.  For those who don’t know, SO:TLH is a Japanese RPG for the XBox 360; your main character is Edge, who, despite being a junior officer in a interplanetary exploration organization with faster-than-light-capable starships, fights with a sword.  Then there’s his childhood best friend Reimi, who fights with a bow-and-arrow; they soon meet space elf Faize (another swordsman), and the kindergardener mage Lymle, who, having come from a technologically less advanced civilization, is the first character who has a real reason why she doesn’t fight using technology.  Then there’s cyborg Arnold Schwarzenegger (did I spell that right?) wannabe Bacchus, who has a weakness for girls in maid outfits and/or traditional gym clothes; stripperiffic catgirl Meracle; and the stripperiffic space elf chick Myuria.  There will probably be another character picked up somewhere, but I haven’t got that far yet.

In any case, SO:TLH is pretty fun (I will withhold judgment on its place in the pantheon of Great Console RPGs until I have completed it)…except when the game freezes up for no apparent reason.  Now, if this had happened yesterday night, after I had been playing for eight or nine hours straight, I would not have thought much unusual about it.  Shit sometimes happens, amirite?  However, this little lockup came after only a mere hour of gameplay today.  It locked up right here:

star-ocean-freeze-up-2

Fortunately, I’m a firm subscriber of the RPG Player’s Prime Directive, the most useful advice for playing RPGs ever: Save often, save frequently, save every fifteen minutes, save every time you run into a save point, save often, save before each boss fight, save after each boss fight, save, save, save, save, so I think I’ve only lost about ten minutes of my efforts…

UPDATE: It happened to me again, in the same place—the Purgatorium on Disk Two—and at the same time—during the “victory dance” animation after winning an fairly mundane fight.  Most annoying.  According to the Gamefaqs Forumgoers of Considerable Knowledge, this is an issue with the game resolution—if your XBox is set above 720p, it will freeze.  720p doesn’t look any different from 1080p to my eyes, so I will try this to see if the problem persists.

Posted in Console RPGs, Games | Tagged: , | 5 Comments »

SNAKE! SNAAAAAAAAAKE!

Posted by Doug on March 28, 2009

Solid Snake’s a roadmap on my way to be a man*.

Reading the TV Tropes Wiki’s list of Crowning Moments of Awesome led me, through a rather convoluted sequence of hyperlinks to a performance of the Metal Gear Solid theme by the Eminence Orchestra…which led me to dusting off my poor, neglected PlayStation 3 and putting Guns of the Patriots in.

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Posted in Games, Tactical Espionage Action | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

A Long-Winded Rant About Homebrewing a Roleplaying Game System

Posted by Doug on March 16, 2009

This post is exactly what it says in the title.  Writing usually helps me sort out my thoughts, and lately my thoughts have been consumed by the task of rebuilding the Mecha Monogatari roleplaying game.  There is a strong possiblity that this post will make no sense whatsoever.  You have been warned.

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A d20 Versus the Chi Squared Test

Posted by Doug on February 10, 2009

So I was trawling through the official Dungeons & Dragons forums, and came across one thread where a DM claimed that he had a player who had rolled a 20 on a twenty-sided die a total of twenty-three times in a row.  Of course, given that the odds of this occuring are 838,860,800,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 to 1, the consensus of the community seems to be that either the “lucky” player is cheating, or that the DM is full of it.

Of course, the player may not be consciously cheating, and the DM may not be deliberately lying, but just consider: assume that the odds of a player cheating (consciously or not) are 1 in 1000 (generous) and the odds of a poster in a forum repeating nonfactual information (consciously or not) are also 1 in 1000 (veeeeeerrrrrry generous).  This means that either a cheating player or a nontruthful poster are 838,860,800,000,000,000,000,000,000 times more likely than a non-cheating player actually rolling twenty-three 20s in a row.

The other forum-goers who decided to chime in brought up loaded dice (a possibility that the DM vehemently rejected), and this got me to thinking about my own dice: were they fair?  Does, for example, my green-and-white Chessex d20 have exactly the same chance of landing on any one of its twenty faces?

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Posted in Games, Mathematics, Science, Traditional RPGs | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

“Dream Fighter” and Unrelated Blathering

Posted by Doug on January 22, 2009

This video was released by Perfume back in November ’08, but I just recently noticed it.  I’ve said before that part of the charm of jpop is the fact that I can enjoy the music without being distracted by the pesky lyrics, but that being said, I still would like to be sufficiently fluent in Japanese to permit me to, say, watch an anime in the original langauge without subtitles.  I know trying to learn Japanese from watching anime probably wouldn’t turn out too well (imagine a Japanese person learning English by watching nothing but Disney movies and The Simpsons), but I have picked up a smattering of words and phrases that, were I to utilize them for communications purposes, would result in me being laughed at by every native of the Land of the Rising Sun (and about 5% of the population of the Aloha State.  Mendōkusei…).

I’d love to take classes in Japanese, but the non-English languages the higher-education institutions in these parts offer seem to be limited to Spanish, French, German, and maybe Latin.  French and Spanish I can understand: Canada is to the north of us, Mexico to the south.  However, there is an ocean in between here and Germany.  Not too many people sprechen Sie Deutsch around here.  Latin would be cool, but let’s face the facts: Ancient Rome produced approximately zero animation of any quality.  The motivation just isn’t there for me.  Really, if some Kenyan animation company produced a kick-ass awesome show and/or movie, I would feel compelled to learn some Swahili (actually Swahili is pretty high on my List of Languages I Would Like to Learn, but that’s beside the point).  Ah, to be a polyglot, and mix-and-mangle metaphors from Mandarin, Macedonian, and Middle Dutch, as well as understand J-pop without having to Google dream fighter lyrics.

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