dwarf

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Everything posted by dwarf

  1. PlayStation 4 Console Discussion

    Was terribly bored this evening and realised I hadn't played anything in a while. Decided that I might like to try out the Hitman games. As it turns out, one doesn't simply try out the Hitman games. Figuring out what entry to buy, alongside which DLC, in order to get a reasonable price for the main content... I honestly just gave up. I feel like I'd sooner hack into MI5 with a Nokia N-Gage. IO Interactive, if you're listening - you can get in the bin. You'd have my trilla if you weren't such bastards about this whole affair. Ye just don't deserve it, DO YEE!?
  2. Reviews are saying this is rock hard, which I wasn't expecting but it definitely piques my interest as that's what I liked about the originals. And it's also good, apparently. If it was £30 I'd be tempted but £50 is steep.
  3. Cyberpunk 2077 (10th December 2020)

    Sorry I should have made it clearer: by worker productivity I mean the value workers create through their labour has shot up (because they're more skilled, the technology they use is more advanced, etc), but instead of getting paid more in recognition of that, that extra value is taken as profit by employers. Completely unjust, but this is what happens when you don't have unions. Fab post all round though, especially the bit in bold. The phrase 'living for the weekend' also hints at a broad discontent among the public with regards to work time issues. Glad this has been fruitful though! Without derailing the thread or trying to force more socialism down your throat, I'd argue the lack of positive change has been down to the marginalisation of the left. Labour has lost its roots in trade unions (restored somewhat under Corbyn but that ship has sailed now), and the Tories have only ever spoken in the interests of capital. Both have bought into the market fundamentalist ideology I mentioned earlier, so it's just been a relentless torrent of shit for working people. The Tories just happen to be significantly worse. But yeah... Cyberpunk looks sick.
  4. Cyberpunk 2077 (10th December 2020)

    I promise I'm not being contrarian for contrarian's sake, but I'd really stress the material conditions as the overwhelming reason for increases in overtime. If people have to work harder and longer to maintain the same standard of living, they're going to do that through lack of any other choice. If people are working more overtime in other industries, and in other countries, that's because rising inequality has been a global trend. Stagnating wages, the privatisation of public services, a less generous welfare state, etc, have forced workers to work longer, and historically low union power means they've been unable to mount any opposition to the economic exploitation they've faced. The games industry shouldn't be let off the hook because people everywhere seem to want to work more these days. The question here is about the extent of exploitation, and the games industry happens to be a particularly egregious example because union density is lower than in other industries. If game designers were in a position to collectively bargain for better wages, realistic release date schedules, and reduced hours, they wouldn't have to do the overtime. Working to hang onto your job is a material question. Saving up for a wedding is a material question. Someone might be 'happy' to work 6 days to see a game off, but again, is it really a choice if they need to work those hours to hold onto the job? If they had the option to push the release date back and work 5 days a week, I'm sure most would take that option. These people have lives to live. If the rich fucks at CD Projekt and/or the publishers have to take a slight hit to account for that, then that's the sacrifice that has to be made. You could ask: well why is union density low? Isn't that a cultural issue? Well yes and no. Material and cultural explanations are intertwined. A market-driven ideology has ruled the world for the past few decades, which comes from the top. Leaders have introduced laws that make it harder to unionise. The greater variety of jobs, and types of work contract (zero hours, temporary, freelance etc) also make it harder for workers to unionise, as they seemingly have fewer shared interests to unite over. All of this worsens people's material conditions. This then drives changes in culture - people have less time and money to support other people, they become less used to engaging in collective efforts, they meet more of their needs in the market rather than in publicly provided services, they're fed stories in the billionaire press about poor people being scroungers, and so on, so they become more individualistic. Individualistic people are more easily exploited because they don't support each other, which leads to worsening material conditions, and the cycle continues... It wasn't the case back in the day, but the galaxy brain take in today's world is that work is a political issue. Workers need to build collective power to oppose things like crunch, plain and simple. The idea that we have work-life balance in a five day week is a myth, let alone in a six-day week. That this is isn't obvious shows how far we've fallen. For full disclosure, I consider myself a socialist (or at the very least a social democrat) and I'm working on a video about the idea of a four-day week (as a political policy), hence the essay! With that said, I don't think you have to be terribly left wing to agree with most of the above.
  5. Cyberpunk 2077 (10th December 2020)

    Worker productivity has increased dramatically over the past forty years or so, but in the same period that hasn't translated into higher wages (in real terms) for the average employee as the value they're producing is increasingly lining the pockets of the top few earners. It's therefore likely that people are working overtime to make up for the money they've lost out on; so on some level it's contentious as to whether you call that overtime voluntary or not. Cultural changes have an impact on people's willingness to work overtime, sure, but the underlying material explanation might be more compelling.
  6. Demon's Souls (12th November 2020)

    The difficulty of the Souls games is exaggerated, true, but they're still difficult when push comes to shove. And it's one of the few series where seeking out tips and guidance online comes recommended - if you go in blind you unwittingly handicap yourself in a big way, as the mechanics aren't made transparent. I'd also disagree slightly with buddy Goron: some things in the series are outright unfair, but like other unconventional aspects of the game (including the opaque systems, minimal dialogue etc) in most cases they make the game better, darkly funny, or at least distinct. We could pick bones about what encounters are fair or unfair, but ultimately we'd all agree that even the hardest sections are worth persevering with. Also not mentioned: the sense of atmosphere and reward you get in Souls games is unmatched, and so many details contribute to that. My personal recommendation would be to play Dark Souls first. Play the best, I reckon, and then try the other entries if you like it. I love what they've revealed of the Demon's remake so far, don't get me wrong. The FOV makes it look way more cinematic than I remember it being, and it'll still be a treat to play even after all this time. But some of the less polished aspects of the game could put new players off, so you may as well try the series at its peak if possible, and it's cheap and easy to do. I didn't get along with the movement/combat of Sekiro so I didn't stick with it, but that might've been from general Soulsborne fatigue more than anything else.
  7. Last of Us Part II

    Don't get me wrong - it's a good way to build tension. It's just that it makes up too big a proportion of the game, especially on harder difficulties which require you to stock up.
  8. Xbox Series S | X Console Discussion

    Why has nobody in the boardroom suggested they stop dicking around for five minutes? Give it a sensible name, invest in new studios, and you're half way there. UGH.
  9. Last of Us Part II

    See I'd be interested in going for the grounded trophy, but I just can't be arsed to go through the slow-paced item collection. Maybe one for when I upgrade to PS5 and have an itch to replay it. You'll hear from me in a year's time when I nope out after the first proper mission.
  10. Game Maker's Toolkit

    I'm glad she raised the fact that indie game UIs are generally more flamboyant/eccentric. While I generally prefer minimalist or customisable designs, there's definitely still space for other approaches. I remember enjoying Papers Please for its more creative aesthetic, and the fact that certain areas of the screen appeared to be bigger than they needed to be - as if the developer was making a virtue of sacrificing functionality in favour of style. Retro UI designs probably also play into a nostalgia for outdated operating systems or software. Papers Please took me back to using Windows 98, or playing Monkey Island, when elements of the UI weren't responsive to your mouse pointer. Today everything on your desktop animates or changes colour depending on your mouse position, which is obviously helpful, but it's nice to revert back to a time when things weren't so slick. One of the pleasures of Monkey Island was the fact that you never knew if you were about to click on the right area of the screen until the game world reacted to your click. Contrast to today's games, where the interactivity of certain objects in the world is revealed (or 'spoiled') to you before you make the effort to interact with them, be it through button prompts, the colour of the objects themselves (e.g. if they have a shiny quality to them) or other signals. Also, was reminded of this after sharing the last video. Great channel:
  11. Game Maker's Toolkit

    Posting this here because it's the kind of video Mark Brown would make, and the presenter is hilarious. As mentioned in top YT comment, it's great that she sticks to her own opinion despite the fact that the developers she interviews offer the opposite view.
  12. Ghost of Tsushima (PS4/PS5)

    People got suckered into thinking this would be great because the 3D, windswept foliage looks cool.
  13. Last of Us Part II

    Don't take it personally - that's just how I react to bad takes and dishonesty.
  14. Last of Us Part II

    Neil Druckmann posted this on Twitter in September last year: I'm guessing they would've had to delay the game well into PS5 territory if they wanted to include the multiplayer mode, which was probably financially untenable. When asked about the game in recent interviews Druckmann mimed his mouth being zipped, so it's presumably still in the works. As for Part 2 having coop from the start - did a guy in an internet video tell you that or did you make it up? I'd probably play a NaughtyDog game that was built with co-op in mind, but then again I'd play practically anything they came up with. Bolting it onto TLoU would've been a waste of development time. As soon as you introduce another player into a narrative driven game like this, you detract from the connections you make with your companions, which should feel intimate. Having your friend run around as Dina, guns blazing, sprinting ahead to pick up all the loot before you do, would completely ruin the experience. Your companions in this game tend to you, ask you how you're feeling, set the tone and pace, set your expectations about what's coming next (e.g. a period of reflection or a tense fight), and spontaneously react to and interact with objects in the world. All of that collapses when your mate Steve takes control. Resident Evil was built with co-op in mind, and it's a fun action series for what it's worth, but you don't come away feeling like you've bonded with your companion. Now that's as much to do with the dreadful writing as anything else, sure, but it's also to do with the lack of meaningful interactions you have with them during gameplay aside from shooting zombos in the face.
  15. Last of Us Part II

    Lol why are you passing this off as a prediction? NaughtyDog said they'd release a multiplayer game based on the Factions mode from the original. Seems highly unlikely that you'd pluck the word 'factions' from thin air. Very odd.
  16. Last of Us Part II

    Thanks @dan-likes-trees for thoughtful posts as usual. Feeling similarly overwhelmed @Shorty in terms of the amount of things I could discuss having just completed it, although I'm probably less bothered than you are about questions of player agency (and in the instances you mention I think the inner conflict of pressing square is actually the point). Overall I thought this was an absolute riot. Loved it. Somewhat surprised to hear about the fan backlash, but then again not so surprised either. Trying to defend a game against entitled, butt-hurt fanboys is a pointless and thankless task, so I'll steer clear of that. Getting on the sesh now so I'll post thoughts in full at some point this weekend.
  17. Cyberpunk 2077 (10th December 2020)

    I agree. They set a benchmark with Fallout 3, but since then the world has moved on without them. Not that it gives me any pleasure to say so. Cyberpunk is due to release about two years after Fallout 76, but the gulf between the two is staggering in terms of what can be expected of an open world game. Fallout 76 might be perceived as something of a disastrous misstep, a 'dud', but for me it's emblematic of a long term downward trajectory in Bethesda's ability to come up with fresh ideas, or deliver a finished, serviceable product which works on its own terms. Now we'll have to wait and see if Cyberpunk performs as well as it appears to, but if it does, I don't see how Bethesda can show their faces afterwards. There's just so much ground to make up. What game could they possibly show to restore the prestige they've built up over all these years? I suspect they've got nada.
  18. Cyberpunk 2077 (10th December 2020)

    Bethesda are probably looking at this and shitting themselves.
  19. I think they tried that in some respects with Crash Twinsanity but apparently it didn't work. Trailer is more promising than what was originally leaked but I dunno man... platforming physics seem a bit off and it's a shame it doesn't have the weight of a big developer behind it to give it that polish. Will reserve judgement though
  20. Last of Us Part II

    The fucker's arrived. Ordered from ShopTo and got in an hour ago @Ganepark32, so still some hope?
  21. It's incredible how off-putting the modern character model is, but cool if true. The description and box art seem suspect though.
  22. Last of Us Part II

    Just noticed I received an email at 5pm saying the same. Really hope they dispatch tomorrow! I just want to congratulate myself more than anything for knowing next to fuck all about this. All I've seen is the original guitar playing trailer from ages ago and the odd couple of seconds of advert footage when scrolling through Facebook. Still a bit devod they removed factions. If they still plan on releasing the standalone factions game, and it's built for PS5, I might be convinced to make the generational leap.