Stoatboy Comments

Page 1 of 24

  • Tempest 4000 is real, Jeff Minter is developing it and Atari is publishing it

  • Stoatboy 08/08/2017

    @SpaceMonkey77 Van Gogh painted a silly number of pictures of sunflowers. They're all pretty good, I reckon. Revisiting a familiar theme is stupidly common across all media - and often by some of the very best artists. Evolution is as valid as revolution. Reply +4
  • The Overwatch dialogue that everyone remembers but doesn't exist

  • Stoatboy 27/07/2017

    "It received its namesake from troops of people claiming, assuredly, that Nelson Mandela died in prison in the 1980s. Of course, Mandela didn't die until 2013. It's far from the only cited example. Hannibal Lecter never says 'Hello Clarice' in Silence of the Lambs, the Berenstain Bears was never spelt with an 'e' instead of an 'a', and Sinbad never made a genie movie."

    I'm 45 and I honestly don't remember anyone claiming Mandela died in prison (or maybe if I did the fact that he was famously released and became president of South Africa made any such claims ridiculous). I've never seen Silence of the Lambs, but I'll admit that makes me the outlier. I'm only vaguely aware of the name "Berenstain Bears", but haven't the first clue what they are. And I'm not really sure what the Sinbad genie movie thing is even referring to. (Then again I know nothing about Overwatch either, so perhaps these examples are fitting.)

    Surely something like "Play it again, Sam" or "We're gonna need a bigger boat"
    would be better examples though?
    Reply +8
  • Pyre review

  • Stoatboy 24/07/2017

    @Nobunaga Whenever somebody starts a post with "I'm sorry" I'm pretty sure they're not sorry in the slightest, and use the fact that they opened with a lie as a handy pointer that anything that comes afterwards is probably equally not worth caring about. Reply +15
  • Behold the Kickmen: the football game from a developer who doesn't like football

  • Stoatboy 24/07/2017

    @mrcheesyelf It's not sneering. It's parody and mockery. There's no ill-will or maliciousness. It's just a send-up. The kind of thing grown-ups accept as a given in any other medium.

    It's in a similar vein to the Alan Partridge sports commentary from The Day Today, and this Mitchell and Webb sketch, which no football fan with half a brain would accuse of being "sneering":

    Reply +11
  • Stoatboy 24/07/2017

    @Brave27heart Sports journalist for the Guardian. Very good at his job (which sadly makes him a bit of a rarity). Reply +3
  • How developers really deal with bugs

  • Stoatboy 20/07/2017

    @Foxtrot-Oscar The current situation is not acceptable. The problem is that the blame for the current situation lies all over the place, and IMO the developer is actually often the least of the problem.

    The publisher is the main problem - they set the release date. They fund the game, and set the required feature list (often changing it many times during development, frequently very late in the day).

    When it comes to the crunch the publisher will prioritise whether to fix bugs or add new features, or later on whether to ship the game as it is with loads of bugs still present.

    But they want to have their cake and eat it, so they won't move the deadline, but will keep adding features and demanding changes, even while the known bugs are piling up in the database.

    The developer is hired by the publisher, and whilst they'd like to make the best game possible with as few bugs as possible, they have to deliver what the publisher asks for. They're paying the wages, after all. If the publisher asks for feature X and it prevents you fixing a dozen bugs then so be it. They're the customer as far as the developer is concerned, and they're always right.

    This is perhaps the key problem with the way the industry works. The developer has to please the publisher, rather than the player they're aiming at. And the publisher is most interested in pleasing their shareholders, who couldn't care less about gameplay features, game-breaking bugs, or poor user experience. As long as the money rolls in they're happy. So if gamers put up with day-one patches whilst still pre-ordering games that's fine, as far as they're concerned.

    A developer working autonomously would have the choice to push the deadline back and fix everything, or remove a couple of features and bring everything in on time with no-one else any the wiser. That's the ideal situation - but it happens very rarely these days.

    So you end up with a game that may ship on time with a dozen more features than was originally planned, and a database full of unfixed bugs still in it, because that's what the publishers think will make their shareholders money.
    Reply +3
  • Stoatboy 19/07/2017

    @Foxtrot-Oscar Yours is a big old post, but the bit I want to respond to is this:

    "I've read on many occasions that once a game is 'finished', in the couple of weeks it then takes before the game hits stores, and online services that this time is spent making final fixes, bug testing, etc, with the result being the now inevitable day one patch"

    This is wrong. There IS a period at the end of development when nothing else happens other than bug fixing, and it may only be a couple of weeks - that much is true. But bug fixing happens throughout the entire duration of the development, and QA testing will start many months before the game is finished.

    Even before QA come on board the game always has to be in a playable condition because it's impossible to develop a game if you can't actually play it. Artists need to see their work in game, and designers have to constantly play their levels to make sure everything works - so when it doesn't they'll raise bugs to get it fixed.

    When QA IS assigned to the project the number of bugs reported ramps up massively. From my experience how this huge swathe of bugs is dealt with is the big problem, but it's too big an issue to go into here, and almost certainly varies from developer to developer.

    As a game nears completion you get to a point where you stop adding new stuff in case it breaks things, later you may then stop everything bar bug fixes, and then finally for a short period everyone steps away, and only class A bugs will be fixed - crash bugs, TRC fails, and show-stoppers. It doesn't matter how many other bugs are left at this point - they won't get fixed for release.

    The reason lower priority bugs may not be fixed in this period is that any changes you make anywhere risk breaking other more important things elsewhere, and there will be a deadline looming that the publisher absolutely has to hit.

    One final note, all the QA people I've worked with have been really good, and as thorough and helpful as you could wish for. They report all the bugs they find, and if more detail is needed they're always happy to help. The problem exists after the bug reports have been filed - either with prioritisation, scheduling, procedure, and any other number of issues. Edit to clarify - if a game goes out with bugs in, QA are probably the last people I'd look at blaming. They're probably reading the reviews at the end going "yep - reported that one", "and that one", and "that one"...
    Reply +7
  • Stoatboy 19/07/2017

    A couple of stories from my time in development.

    First - the bug that was put back in. Working on Fuzion Frenzy - we got right up to the day before master when a bug was found on one of the mini-games (Volt Vault IIRC). Basically one number that controlled the speed of the game wasn't initially set to zero at the start of a new round. This meant when the game was first run it was fine, but if you keep replaying it, the number just keeps getting bigger, because it's never set back to zero. So the game gets faster and faster the more you play it.

    This was a stupidly easy fix, and almost certainly couldn't have led to any repercussions whatsoever, so it was made and sent off to Microsoft. Microsoft then got back and said - nope - if you make that fix we will have to retest the entire game all over again, and we're mastering tomorrow - put the bug back in. So the code was rolled back, and the bug stayed.

    Secondly, Pac Man World 3. I designed a lot of the levels for this, and was a bugger for hiding secrets in hard to find places. Towards the end of development, as often happens, some of my levels were given to other designers for finishing off and bug-fixing. We got right up to the last couple of days before master, and I spot someone playing one of my levels and I see that something has changed - a door that I had always planned to stay open, now slowly closes over time (the change had been made as an easy fix to help level streaming - if the door shuts behind you, you can never go back, meaning the game can ditch all the assets that are no longer needed).

    I was horrified. The setup for the room was that you opened the door from a switch in the middle of the room. The door stayed open so that it formed a narrow channel with the side wall of the room. You could then run over to it and repeatedly wall jump between wall and door to get up to a hidden area where there were some minor trinkets, but also the hidden Galaxian collectable for that level, that unlocked a classic pacman level, and would also contribute to 100% completion of the game.

    But now the door slowly slid shut, meaning the channel you needed to wall jump up was getting wider and wider all the time. I grabbed the controller and had a quick go at reaching the secret, but failed miserably. It was too late to change the level back - it was a huge amount of work, but if you can't make that jump you can't get 100% completion.

    So all we could do was sit there and try to make this impossible-looking set of jumps. Three or four of us took turns. We were at the stage of dev where we were actually not at all busy - the lull between the mad crunch in the run up to mastering, and confirmation that we were done, with only occasional essential bug fixes to deal with, so we had plenty of time. I honestly can't remember how long we spent attempting this - it seemed like hours. Press the button, run across the room, leap into the channel, wall jump, wall jump, wall jump, miss the ledge, fall, run back, try again.

    We tried every trick we could think of, getting achingly close to making it sometimes, but it looked hopeless. Then finally my mate nails it somehow - some fluke combination of timing that allowed him to finally grab the ledge by a hair's breadth and clamber up, after hundreds and hundreds of failed attempts.

    Sweet! It's gettable then. There's a wafer thin difference between impossible and almost impossible, but it's better than nothing. I wasn't happy that my level went out with perhaps one of the hardest platforming sections in video-gaming in it (especially because the original design was rather elegant I thought), but if it had gone out impossible I'd have been gutted.
    Reply +14
  • Nine Inch Nails' new music video features Polybius

  • Stoatboy 14/07/2017

    There's an article on Ars Technica about the collaboration here: NIN Polybius video Reply +1
  • Tony Hawk's Pro Skater HD to be removed from Steam next week

  • Stoatboy 11/07/2017

    It's true that this isn't quite right, but it's far from being as bad as many folk are making out. For the price of half a sandwich, it's well worth a punt IMO. There's an awful lot of game there for the price, and a little clunkiness and slightly shonky physics isn't enough to stop it being well worth a play.

    It's true it ain't no THPS2, but then, what else is? (although if you can get hold of a copy of the PC version of THPS2 that's a better option, since it's actually a decent port).
    Reply 0
  • The making of Barbarian: The Ultimate Warrior

  • Stoatboy 09/07/2017

    @stonybridgeironhole Probably my favourite move - the sound made it feel so satisfying.

    There aren't enough head butts in games. Such a simple move, but wonderfully visceral.
    Reply 0
  • Watch: Johnny cooks peanut butter nachos from Overwatch

  • Stoatboy 06/07/2017

    Bananas in cookery is a bad call IMO. They're OK as they are (providing they're not too ripe), but cooked they tend to be minging - sickly sweet, overly-powerful and cloying. Banana bread is pretty much a crime. Reply 0
  • Microsoft allows Halo PC fan project to live

  • Stoatboy 29/06/2017

    Microsoft have been comparatively good on this stuff in the recent past. I seem to recall them releasing a fair few assets for non-commercial use a while ago. Maybe they understand that fan-created content never really hurts the brand?

    Even if this is wildly successful it will only help to grow the market for official Halo products. No-one who loves Halo is not going to buy the next Halo game because of this, and chances are it'll create new fans who're also potential new customers.
    Reply +10
  • Watch: Johnny cooks a chicken dinner from PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds

  • Stoatboy 28/06/2017

    Whilst I don't bother peeling spuds for most things, mash is the exception. I know even bad mash is actually pretty good, but I think it really benefits from being done well (and it's really easy to do well).

    Peel them, boil them, pass them through a ricer*, add lots of butter and a little milk and salt and mix in with a fork. Glorious.

    *I've bought silly numbers of kitchen gadgets in my time, but there are only about 3 I'd actually recommend, and a ricer is one of them. A pain in the arse to wash, but worth it for brilliant mashed spuds (also works well on swede, turnips etc.)
    Reply +1
  • Sniper Ghost Warrior 3 dev admits it screwed up, explains why

  • Stoatboy 27/06/2017

    @leeroye They generally don't. Developers don't choose how games turn out, publishers do.

    Publishers see that the most successful games are often open-world, and these can make vast sums of money.

    If there's one thing publishers really like it's money, so they will then look at every project on their books to see which ones they can make into open-world games in order to try to get a piece of the action.

    Then they get the developer to redesign the game accordingly - even if it's completely unnecessary, unsuited to it, or down-right damaging to the original vision.
    Reply +7
  • One of the ugliest controllers ever is about to make a comeback

  • Stoatboy 12/06/2017

    I thought the Duke was great, and I have fairly small hands (my party trick is that I can just about get my fist in my mouth - but then I've got a pretty big mouth, and I do end up with severe tooth marks in my knuckles).

    It was big and kinda heavy, but it was super comfy - felt just right.

    Remarkably it's the only controller I've ever smashed. (I was so annoyed at myself after fluffing a crucial shot in Links that I flung it across the room, and it hit probably the only thing I own that was tougher than it - my dumbbells. Probably for the best in hindsight, otherwise it would have damaged the wall...)
    Reply 0
  • Watch: Johnny cooks Crab Rangoon from Far Cry 4

  • Stoatboy 01/06/2017

    Crikey - I use a tad over 400 grams of flour to make a nice loaf in my bread machine. 500 grams for a few crab-wraps is verging on the feeding of the 5000 territory. Reply +2
  • Ultra Street Fighter 2: The Final Challengers review

  • Stoatboy 25/05/2017

    @Der_tolle_Emil But Top Gear ALWAYS pulled up cars for being stupidly expensive. They'd sometimes recommend expensive cars over cheaper ones because they felt so much better, even if they were lacking in features, but the reasoning was always explained. Things can cost a bomb and be worth it, but they really are absolute exceptions for the most part. But if one car is 100 grand more than another and isn't really super special, it tends to get marked down for the ridiculous price tag.

    I've been gaming for over 40 years, and whilst I find it hard to pick my favourite game ever Spelunky is top 3, definitely. If I get talking to a gamer who hasn't played Spelunky I will bore them senseless about why they should buy it immediately and play the hell out of it. (I've bought it 3 times myself at full price on various formats - so I've paid my dues). If it cost £500 I would tell people not to buy it. I'd tell them it was brilliant but not worth the money. I absolutely couldn't recommend the game at that price. I'd hope they'd remember and pick it up if they ever saw it at a sensible price, however.

    As much as it galls me to say it, a game review is definitely a buyer's guide. It's not like most film reviews, which can stand the test of time. The medium of games is very different and still changing too fast, whereas cinema is largely fixed (and the cost is fixed too).

    To push the analogy to breaking point, this game is like the most edited enhanced version of the original Star Wars film being sold at 3 times the price of the original. There are some plus points, and some big negatives, but the base material was definitely a classic. The reviews for that still stand.

    The review for this acknowledges the classic status of the original, but absolutely cannot recommend paying for this version.
    Reply +2
  • Stoatboy 24/05/2017

    I used to think that reviews shouldn't take the price into consideration, but I've changed my mind of late - possibly because there's so much more competition now, possibly because I'm much poorer.

    But games are just a commodity, and almost everything else gets reviewed on value. Car reviews will tell you a car is great but not worth the money. Food and restaurant reviews will always take price into consideration. You might be fine eating a nicer sandwich from the deli than something bog-standard from Tesco for a couple of quid more, but would you do it for ten times the price?

    To use Eurogamer's ratings at a fiver your deli sandwich might be "Recommended" or even "Essential", but at 50 quid it would be a definite "Avoid". It doesn't matter how good it is, you'll probably be able to find something nearly as good for a lot less.

    This for £35? Nope!
    Reply +2
  • Stoatboy 24/05/2017

    @AndyboyH I like this one:

    Reply +12
  • Searching for a video game hero

  • Stoatboy 20/05/2017

    @spongebob You've jumped to the conclusion that it's a bullshit article, just because Twin Peaks is suddenly newsworthy again. When the likelihood is that the article is a genuine response to Twin Peaks becoming newsworthy again.

    I've only watched Twin Peaks once - back in the day when it was originally broadcast, and I loved it. TO THIS DAY on the very rare occasion I buy myself a cake there's a quote of Agent Cooper's that springs to mind - something like "Every day you should take time out to be nice to yourself". That's a really good rule to try to stick to.

    It wouldn't occur to me to mention that to anyone else ever unless the topic of Twin Peaks had already been raised, but it is entirely genuine. I wouldn't call him a hero of mine, but I've definitely been influenced by him for well over half of my life.
    Reply +7
  • Watch: Johnny cooks Rigglefuzz's BBQ Buzzard Wings from WoW

  • Stoatboy 18/05/2017

    I have absolutely no idea why unsalted butter is a thing. Even for sweet things a little bit of salt helps the flavour, but here the recipe actually states that you use unsalted butter, and then add an unspecified amount of salt. Why not just add regular butter, and then a slightly smaller unspecified amount of salt? Reply 0
  • Watch: Johnny cooks Kwama Egg Quiche from The Elder Scrolls Online

  • Stoatboy 03/05/2017

    "How, and why, does that taste of fish?" - haha, great!

    Again, another recipe clearly written by someone who's never cooked anything more complex than toast. It's such a minor part of a game as huge as TES obviously, but for anyone who has even the first smidgeon of cookery knowledge this recipe just breaks any illusion of authenticity.

    For starters, by definition a quiche is open - it's a flan, and those don't have a top on, let alone a middle layer of "pastry" (never gonna work in a million years).

    And whilst I've never cooked a quiche I do know that the eggs are there to set the milk or cream that would be the bulk of the mix, rather than just being baked egg.

    As to the pastry - I'm no baker but there are only two things I know you can make from just flour and water. One of them is a chapatti (needs wholemeal flour, and benefits from a pinch of salt but otherwise it's all you need - mine worked out really well FWIW). The other is the glue for papier-mâché - which is probably what the middle layer of this turned out like..
    Reply +2
  • On NASA, the video game developer

  • Stoatboy 29/04/2017

    The easiest response to the nutjobs who think we didn't land on the moon is to ask why didn't Russia debunk it at the time?

    They were the ones who got beat by their most hated enemy. If there was a shadow of a doubt about it, Russia would have put all their resources behind proving it was bollocks as the most epic slap-down in cold war history, and yet they didn't. Because they couldn't.
    Reply +4
  • Watch: Johnny makes Cook Cook's Fiend Stew from Fallout New Vegas

  • Stoatboy 19/04/2017

    I'd have thought 2 bottles of Punk IPA would be a bit feisty for a stew, but then I guess with so little else to give it any flavour you probably need something with a bit of zing. Reply +1
  • Why Dwarf Fortress started killing cats

  • Stoatboy 14/04/2017

    @VoxyGon The main point of the article is a ten minute long YouTube video that goes over it at length from the outset. The soundcloud link is an extra. Ten minutes ain't much of an ask. Reply 0
  • Stoatboy 13/04/2017

    Fantastic. I haven't played DF in at least 5 years, and it's still comfortably my favourite game ever. It's bonkers on a completely different level to anything else that's bonkers.

    Nice fun video. I don't generally like video content, but you can talk to me about Dwarf Fortress in whatever format you like, as far as I'm concerned. Do it in Braille, and I'll probably have a stab at learning that (I've learnt to play DF - how hard can Braille be?)
    Reply +5
  • Watch: Johnny cooks monster lasagna from Don't Starve

  • Stoatboy 12/04/2017

    Good stuff again. I'd have cooked the flour for the white sauce out a little more personally - but that might be because of the nice biscuit smell you get rather than because it helps at all.

    How about making something from Stardew Valley? I'd suggest the Strange Bun - you just need some flour, some periwinkles and some Void Mayonnaise.
    Reply +1
  • Sine Mora EX slated for Switch via Brazilian ratings board

  • Stoatboy 11/04/2017

    @Samildanach : I'm pretty awful at shoot-em-ups too. I'll never get a 1CC - I wouldn't even try.

    But it's my favourite genre regardless.

    And yet Sine Mora disappoints. The real issue is that it "feels" wrong on a very fundamental level. It doesn't push the right buttons at all, for me. The pacing, the challenge, the attitude - it's all slightly wrong for me.

    It's in the right ballpark, but it never quite works. YMMV, of course.

    And finally, I 've recognised where your user name comes from. One of my favourite books, but it's been a bastard-long time since I read it. Man, I miss David Gemmell...
    Reply +8
  • Stoatboy 11/04/2017

    This is a shoot-em-up for people who don't generally like shoot-em-ups.

    Exposition-heavy nonsense shoved in your face at every opportunity, and not that brilliant when it comes to the gameplay.

    Great for getting people who wouldn't normally play a shmup to give it a go, but nowhere near good enough to convince anyone else that this is the absolute best and purest genre of gaming ever...
    Reply +4
  • Watch: Johnny makes the Sandvich from Team Fortress 2

  • Stoatboy 29/03/2017

    Lovely looking loaf - shame it was a tad under. If I had the time to make it by hand I'd love to, but for now I use a bread machine (5 minutes to set up, 5 hours later lovely fresh bread, 2 minutes to wash ready for the next time - best kitchen gadget ever).

    Got to say though - I hate the skewering of sandwiches and burgers with sharpened sticks - even if they do have goodies on them. I think it goes back to watching Scooby Doo - where he'd chuck the sandwich in whole - stick and all - and I'd just imagine it impaling the roof of his mouth. Ew!
    Reply +2
  • Watch: Johnny plays Crusader Kings 2 for the first time, sleeps with daughter-in-law

  • Stoatboy 24/02/2017

    Such a fantastic game. If I had more time I'd waste it playing this.

    Good video - showed why it's worth learning the awful interface to then royally fuck with everyone else in the game whilst your luck lasts.

    And then enjoy reaping the whirlwind.
    Reply +2
  • For the first time ever, Australia is in Civilization

  • Stoatboy 21/02/2017

    It'll be the first civ where most of the Great Leaders are mentioned in Wisden.

    Their special power should have been sledging to demoralise enemy troops. And they'd automatically get massive combat bonuses against England until 2005.
    Reply +4
  • You can spend £8 on a hat in Pokémon Go

  • Stoatboy 20/02/2017

    @The-Doctor Um. If they were trying to nickle and dime you to death these would cost a nickle or a dime. £8 for a hat or thousands of dollars for a ship is very definitely not that.

    Also, some people actually like paying for things they've enjoyed to show their appreciation - even if they don't have to. If the game is free, and especially as in this case, the item for sale does nothing to affect the game then you can view it as voluntarily paying for something you appreciate - sticking money in the tip jar, as it were.
    Reply -1
  • Minecraft adds textured terracotta blocks

  • Stoatboy 09/02/2017

    Good grief - I can make a hell of a mess with those! Top stuff.

    I'm thinking using the darker of the two pinks for all the floors and ceilings, and the lime green for all the walls would make a somewhat bold statement...
    Reply +1
  • Broken dragons: In praise of Morrowind, a game about game design

  • Stoatboy 07/02/2017

    I loved Morrowind too. It was just such an interesting and fantastic world. Still one of my favourite moments was turning up in one of the early locations where there was an ash-storm raging, and all the inhabitants were shielding their eyes from the stinging wind - it genuinely felt like a properly hostile alien place. I was so disappointed when Oblivion turned up and much of it looked like rural Warwickshire.

    And reading earlier posts reminded me of another moment. I was a fair way into the game, had stolen myself a home after killing the previous owner, so was fairly settled. I was working my way through the missions for one of the Houses, and it asked me to assassinate some chap. I can't remember how long it took me to figure out that it just happened to be the old owner of my home, and the game didn't register that he was already dead. So I had a quick look online and found the console command to bring a dead character back. So I used it and brought him back to life, just so I could kill him again to complete the quest. Poor bugger!
    Reply +13
  • Watch: We made etoile blanche from The Witcher 3: Blood and Wine

  • Stoatboy 05/01/2017

    @robg Well played! That may well be comment of the year (and it's only January) :D Reply +1
  • Ariana Grande is a Final Fantasy character

  • Stoatboy 03/01/2017

    @Trinitron I have also honestly never heard of her, or the doughnut incident.

    I have absolutely zero interest in celebs, or pop culture in general, and beyond a quick scan of the Guardian online's front page before I have a crack at the day's cryptic crossword I don't check the news because experience tells me it's almost always a pointless waste of time (if anything's genuinely newsworthy you'll hear about it fairly quickly without wasting any time trawling through meaningless non-events involving baked goods (you say it was a politically-charged moment, but did it have any lasting repercussions? Because if it didn't then it's not worth knowing about, IMO)).

    It's actually really remarkably easy to exist online, and not know that much about celebrities and their comings-and-goings (however major or minor) - even if they do somehow make the news from time to time. If you're surprised that I'd not heard of this one, I could probably blow your mind with some of the stuff I don't know about even major superstars.
    Reply +7
  • Assassin's Creed film review

  • Stoatboy 21/12/2016

    @vert1go Yeah - and what you did was nonsense, because you compared something that is always only negative - lots of pain, bleeding, potential disfigurement, with something that you can only guess at until you've seen it - whether a film is enjoyable.

    It's like trying to review a pint of beer without drinking it. It doesn't matter a jot what you say about it, your opinion is still meaningless unless you've actually drunk the stuff. Saying "It looks like it tastes bad" is utterly worthless, and would make you look like an idiot - spaffing off ideas as fact without anything to back them up.
    Reply +6
  • 'The bug isn't good enough'

  • Stoatboy 21/12/2016

    @oldskooldeano The sound in William's games is phenomenal. When I think back to the arcade I pretty-much lived in as a kid, the sound I imagine is full of the menacing drones and chirps and chattering of Robotron, Joust and Defender. Sublime. Reply 0
  • Dara O Briain's Go 8 Bit gets second and third series

  • Stoatboy 15/12/2016

    Good to hear. It obviously needs a bit of work, but it was a decent start point,and it's ideal fodder for Dave if they can get it right. Reply +1
  • Watch: We made Pig Oat Mash from Dragon Age

  • Stoatboy 15/12/2016

    I've been meaning to try experimenting with making savoury porridge - I'm thinking lots of garlic and herbs, maybe onions and cheese. Sounds like it might work (or possibly be utterly minging). Will give it a go - but in very small batches.

    Fun video again (liked Lunar). You're maths is out on the liquid though - if a cup is 236 mils then 2 is well under a pint (568 mils) - which only makes the hour cooking time even more ludicrous.

    As a game designer this recipe annoys me a little, because it's so incredibly inauthentic. Firstly the name "Pig Oat Mash" has been deliberately chosen to sound unappealing (probably as a cheap way to make it sound very peasant-y), but no-one sets out to make food sound unappealing. They'd do the absolute opposite in fact - especially if the ingredients were ropey as hell.

    Secondly the cup measurement is typically an American standard which would have no basis in a fantasy realm where a cup would be whatever size the local potter made them. If everything was measured in cups this wouldn't be an issue, but the oats and apples aren't, so cup size is important (as the actress said to the vicar).

    Finally that cooking time is ludicrous (as Johnny spotted immediately), so it's clearly been written by someone who doesn't have the first clue about cookery. It's not even in the right ballpark, so anyone who knows how to boil an egg probably knows instantly that this recipe is absolute bobbins.

    It's this lack of attention to detail that often lets the writing in games down, IMO. "Game designer" is one of the few jobs where you can legitimately spend ages browsing the net researching this kind of thing, and yet still people crank out nonsense like this that doesn't stand up to the most basic scrutiny.
    Reply 0
  • "She can't understand how someone she's never met would be so kind"

  • Stoatboy 07/12/2016

    @xaml Asking the internet is a perfectly legitimate approach once you've taken care of the short-term necessities, especially if you know online communities that are likely to have had similar experiences and will give you trustworthy advice. It's very likely that the guy had a list of other people to contact anyway, but just wanted feedback from people who'd "been there and done that already" to approach things forewarned.

    Your suggestion that they should first talk to the management of the facility where the incident happened on the other hand is really bad advice, because, unless you go into that properly informed, it only gives them opportunities to distort facts and suppress any wrongdoing on their behalf.

    Also, it wasn't just an individual who sent a gift, it was loads of them all from the same forum, who rallied together as a community because it seemed like a really nice thing to do.
    Reply +1
  • PaRappa the Rapper spotted on Korean ratings board

  • Stoatboy 03/12/2016

    Always preferred UmJammer Lammy to Pa Rappa, personally. Pa Rappa was more iconic maybe, but Lammy had the tunes.(She was also more likeable.) Reply +2
  • Watch: We made a hoorntooth pie from Final Fantasy 15

  • Stoatboy 01/12/2016

    @emysdk Yeah - I think a vent certainly wouldn't have hurt. I've only made shortcrust myself though.

    Also, I personally don't bother draining tinned beans these days if they're going in something wet. The water they come in is nice and gloopy with beany-ness and it helps to thicken whatever you're making (and it saves faffing about with colanders or losing a few beans as you try and drain them through a small gap between the tin and lid).
    Reply 0
  • The best Cyber Monday deals

  • Stoatboy 28/11/2016

    Mad Max for PC is £3.29 on CDKeys right now. Grabbed it earlier, and it's just finished downloading... Reply +5
  • Watch: We found a recipe in Dishonored 2 and decided to cook it

  • Stoatboy 25/11/2016

    Nice idea. I wouldn't normally watch a video article, but the cooking angle lured me in. A plus point for the decent knife-technique. Reply +1
  • Capcom Vancouver defends Dead Rising 4's "super-polarising" changes

  • Stoatboy 24/11/2016

    @kangarootoo I agree on some levels, but I think the timer WAS the spine of the game. After I wrote my first reply I went for a walk, and the extra time helped a few thoughts crystallise.

    I'd meant to add a point about the need to restart meaning you became more and more familiar with the mall, which became your "turf". Dead Rising is a game where knowing the lay of the land is super-important, and having to retrace your steps helps you learn it intimately. Very few games have that sense of "home turf" (it's something GTA tends to get right in many of its instalments).

    What occurred to me after is that Dead Rising makes you do it not just for space, but time too. You become familiar with the mall over a period of time, and that bundle of space-time is now your turf (if that makes sense).

    That's something rather special. You're essentially playing Groundhog Day, and each replay you're aiming to try to nail the perfect run, building on the experience of all the runs that came before. It doesn't work half as well as a one-shot rinsing affair - you have to have tried and failed again and again to build up the knowledge to finally succeed.
    Reply +1
  • Stoatboy 24/11/2016

    @kangarootoo I do. The timer forced you to make difficult (and therefore interesting) decisions. And as Sid Meier says - a game is a series of interesting decisions.

    With no timer you're free to just hoover up whatever the game has laid out for you at leisure. There's no jeopardy, bar the second-to-second fight to stay alive. If you can just survive you'll see everything. No planning required, no forethought - you can just brute-force your way through the game until it's done, then move on to the same cookie cutter experience in the next game you play.

    With a timer you have to set goals for what you want to achieve this run, and adapt as the situation changes. If you fail, you move on to the next thing, but now you probably have a bigger urge to do it next time. And when you finally crack it, it'll be far more rewarding for the planning it took to get there, than just doing it because it was the next mission that needed checking off the list.
    Reply +4
  • Outlast 2 dev launches Kickstarter for "companion diaper", really

  • Stoatboy 23/11/2016

    I'd imagine this is probably entirely sincere and not just a gimmicky way to achieve easy press coverage for the new game. Reply +9