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Month: October 2016

Kill Your (Indie) Darlings II

Posted on October 17, 2016 in Computrons Gaming

Continuing my complaints about games that are better than 99% of the garbage out there.

Duskers: So, Duskers is super-cool, right? It has a command-line interface, and works from an overhead map. It’s like the motion tracker part of Alien, only you control drones! Sweet, right?

Duskers betrays itself in a really important way. It is completely unsafe to do this without zooming in on an individual drone and operating it manually. The game basically kills the nicest things about it, by demanding fidgety twitching.



Posted on October 17, 2016 in Culture Introspection

Given the states of both the world and my psyche, I thought I’d run through Homo Sacer again. Unfortunately, I’d forgotten how it starts with a really abusive misunderstanding of Foucault. It’s like he read The History of Sexuality and D&P (worst translated name ever), and pretended that he hadn’t notice The Birth of the Clinic. At any rate, it was too much, and now I’m reading Borges short stories.

Kill Your (Indie) Darlings

Posted on October 15, 2016 in Gaming

So partly because we hardware is lagging behind, and partly because I’m not very interested in what is coming out, I’ve sort of been off AAA gaming. Instead, I have been reveling in the world of quirky indie games instead. Somewhat sadly, I’m sort of off those too, because while I enjoy them initially, I get tired of the busywork that is involved in them. Here are my more-in-sorrow-than-in-anger complaints.

Rimworld: Rimworld is a very cool concept, and I have gotten a lot of mileage out of it, but it’s incredibly micro-managy, and the initial set of pawns (whose skills are absolutely critical to actually getting established) is either a crapshoot, or a tedious manner of rerolling characters until you get a combination that works. Combat, both when you are hunting or fending off raids is either incredibly risky or incredibly fiddly, as your pawns won’t even move to avoid grenades of their own volition. Pausing to set a path for them each time that problem arises is not fun for yours truly.

The hunting issue is more about the accuracy with which your pawns shoot, which is abysmal. Because of this, you can graze a dangerous animal even if you are careful to avoid selecting them as hunting targets. Because the map is so large compared to the travel speed of the pawns (which makes sense, it just makes this part a pain) it is very difficult to get your pawn to safety, or to bring over an ally to help fight off the attacking beast.

Hackmud: Hackmud claims to have a deep, nuanced, and engaging storyline, but before you can interact with it you have to do a bunch of timed-typing to earn enough money to make yourself a meaningful entity in-game. You do through this process in the tutorial level, but then you must start again once you reach the main game, which means to get anywhere you need to engage in the dullest part of the game twice. I’ve opened the game many times hoping that I’ll be able to enjoy the stupid money-gathering, but I don’t. Kind of a waste, really.