Friday, September 30, 2011

TotD: Just an Observation

Sooo, I was running through Aaron Diaz's list of top 10 worst hero/villain redesigns ever and came to a couple realizations; particularly wrt Zatanna and Harley Quin...

In manga, when they want to do fan service in mass market books they come up with a story reason to do so. "Lets send them to the beach and do a swimsuit special". "Oooo, bath house vacation time!" "Just tossed the heroine in the air, lets let her butt hang out of the skirt!!". But, at least the costumes tend to make sense in the broad sense as something people would actually wear most of the time in the vast majority of cases. (I won't deny the outliers exist, but look at 90% of what's in Jump and....).

When NA comics want to do fan service in mass market books, they throw their female characters in stripper outfits 24/7 that no one would actually ever wear out in public to anything but a fetish leather night. One that likely involves an orgy room because those pants on Zatanna aren't hiding either of her holes for more than one or two steps on their own anyways.

Then they wonder why their audience is increasingly 30+ year olds clinging on to their childhood.

Suggestion: It's because no one can get parents to buy their 8 year olds the books once they see that Harley Quin pinup cover.

Link Storage: Bad Reasons to go to Law School

(3) My parents will be disappointed in me if I don’t do something respectable instead of pursue my dream of being a ____

Semi-employed permanent bankruptcy is in no way respectable, and there’s a very real risk that that’s where going to law school will leave you. Your parents don’t understand this because their knowledge of what being a lawyer entails is based on TV (see (5), supra). If you want to write the Great American Novel you’ll probably fail, but it won’t be the kind of failure that produces $200,000 in non-dischargeable debt while filling you with self-loathing.
This one is true for many professions. The rest are over here at Lawyers, Guns, and Money. I also like #2.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

WoW: Enhancement in 4.3

Let's just work through the relevant first set of notes here, linking the co-related together:

Wind Shear now has a 25-second base cooldown, up from 6 seconds.
Reverberation now reduces the cooldown of Wind Shear by 10/20 seconds, up from 0.5/1 second.
Intended as a nerf to constrain Resto Shaman control in PvP, the proposed implementation has two primary problems with it:
  1. Resto can still get it if they really want to.
  2. Enhancement doesn't take Reverb - the one second really makes no significant DPS improvement - and, furthermore, is now locked to a 25 second cooldown on Wind Shear until Level 82 at the earliest.
Gonna focus more on the later here because it comes down to a conflict between "Classic" Talent Tree Design and "Cataclysm" TTD. In the classic school, leaving Reverb as the Wind Shear cooldown reducer would make perfect sense because you could always hop into the other tree early to grab it if you were looking to Twink out at 60 or something. But, in the Cata school this is not an option because you can not leave your tree for other talents until you drop 31 points in your own.

This means that in a game where people are already predisposed to hating to have to tasked to interrupt you're now giving proto-Enhancement Shaman 82 levels of excuses not to have to do that job before giving them the option of turning into, arguably, the best interrupting spec in the game. That just seems wrong headed and it's also a hefty nerf to any ES looking to join a Twink PvP or PvE guild focused on sub 85 content because the ranged interrupt they need to be competitive in PvP, or the speedy Interrupt they brought to Raids and Dungeons is now gimped permanently sub 82.

So, in the Cata school that reduction needs to be baked somewhere into the Enhancement Spec or Tree if the goal is to not impact either of the DPS specs with this change and Blizzard needs to put more thought into where that could best be.
Flametongue Weapon no longer increases spell damage. It now increases all non-physical damage done by the wielder by 5%.
Mental Quickness has been redesigned. Instead of granting the shaman spell power, Mental Quickness now causes Enhancement shaman spells to behave as though the shaman has spell power equal to 55% of attack power. Enhancement shaman spells no longer benefit from spell power from other sources.
Death to Spell Power Weapons and Caster Enhancement. As much as that will upset some people, good riddance. There are enough abilities in our priority queue without having to come up with buttons for Lava Burst and other Elemental abilities that periodically came into flavour whenever the theorycrafters were smarter than the designers.
Call of Flame no longer causes Fire Nova to extend the duration of Flame Shock.
Improved Lava Lash now causes Lava Lash to spread a Flame Shock debuff from the target to up to 4 nearby targets. This excludes crowd-controlled targets and those who already have a Flame Shock debuff from the shaman.
Improved Lava Lash no longer increases base Lava Lash damage by 15/30%. This increase has been rolled into the base Lava Lash skill.
Death to Tab Target Flame Shock. Fucking A. The only downside to this is that Lava Lash functionally becomes a Cleave by default - as long as you've a Flame Shock on your target it's going to get pushed to the others in the same way Mages can push their dots with Impact. This means you're going to have to be aware of when you're hitting Lava Lash because there tends to be those occasions where to Cleave is bad - think not wanting to pick up all the spiders during the Nightmare Gauntlet in Deadmines.

The simple solution to that is to trade the Flame Shock for Earth Shock when it's absolutely critical to not cleave because you can't spread what isn't there. The long term solution may be for Blizzard to rename Improved Lava Lash something like "Slashing Flames" and have it turn Chain Lighting into Flame Chain Lightning to spread the Flame Shock dot instead of Lava Lash. In this sense, that part of the talent could function in the same way that Frost Mages see Flame Orb turned into Frostfire Orb to better directly benefit them and have our traditional Cleave do the work we're trying to foist on our primary nuke. I suspect the primary problem with doing that right now - other than making the Art Team cry - is the "those who already have a Flame Shock debuff from the shaman" part which could make Chain Lightning pathing... interesting to code.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Rant: Diablo III ONLINE.


Client/Server Program.

Interesting Fact: Diablo III is the later and all you're doing when you sit there and bitch about the "always online DRM" is demonstrate your lack of knowledge of how things work and why.

The reason for the "Always Online" requirement is that all your character information is now going to be stored remotely on the Battlenet servers instead of locally on your computer and without access to create or load your character info, the game will be really hard to play*. Why is this being done? Because when they allowed local storage Joe Jackass would hack the fuck out of his characters and make online play miserable for everyone else. Take away local storage, problem solved (likely).

So, while I can understand that folks are annoyed that their "single player game" is now... not, in a sense, sitting there and going apeshit about "DRM!!!!!!!" is so far up the misguided tree you've run out of branches and are now swinging from the clouds 60's Spiderman style. Limit your complaints to the fact that you don't want to have to be online to play the game and I'll have much more sympathy for your position instead of thinking you're a posturing idiot throwing out fanboy curse words in an effort to drown out legitimate discussion over the pro's and con's of this change.

* I especially love the people sitting there going: "I'm going to wait until pirates hack out the always online DRM!!!!". While this is not impossible - the existence of private servers for WoW demonstrates that - I often wonder if they do realize that said hack will require installing an entire back end database application on their computer to replicate the D3 server functions that's going to be provided from... shall we say... questionable sources...

Friday, September 23, 2011

Lazy Friday: Nice Official Mashup....

Professor Layton VS Phoenix Wright.

That sound you hear? Millions of adventure/puzzle gamers collectively orgasming.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

TLU: Some Personal Responsibility Required

Her: I want my first time to be with someone who wants me so much they just take me no matter what I say...
Me: ... how do you expect that to work when you tell every guy you date rather implicitly that you're waiting and throw up stop signs at every stage? You really want them to just go ahead anyways?
Her: Yes.
Me: You do realize your position is functionally equivalent to expecting someone who's supposed to be "in love with you" to rape you, right?
Her: Well, I wouldn't file charges if I like them...
Me: Unhuh... I'd normally think the appropriate response here is: "good luck with that" if not for the fact that I wouldn't wish that kinda luck on anyone....

Monday, September 19, 2011

TyL: A More Apt Address I Could not Imagine...

The website for Dark Souls is at

You could make an argument that this is a reference to the gameplay mechanic that will see you spend time in the game as a "soul"; an astral being like state lacking in a physical body because it has died.

Anyone who's played Demon's Souls will shatter this delusion. The real reference here is to the reality that these games are utterly unforgiving and you are going to die. A lot.

The first game was awesome though; with some unparalleled atmosphere and compelling gameplay. If they've boxed any of that in here it's ending up on my shelf in short order.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Lazy Friday: Let Your Inner Child DragOn....

They're having way too much fun here. This gives me hope.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

TotD: There are...

... two Snow White inspired movies coming out next year featuring ass kicking Snow Whites seeking to overthrow an evil witch of a queen.

Anyone who tells you this has nothing to do with Hanna is selling something.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

CBCR3: Fall(ing out of Favour) Update 2011

Been a whole year since I did this originally. Time to take a serious pile of stuff behind the barn and... um... let it go off into the woods... exploring...


Those cracks? Celebratory fireworks as they move onto a new phase in life...


Out With the Old
Rah Rah - Betrayal pt. 1
Darrelle London - Understand
Carbon Dating Service - Light Up The Synchrotron
Meredith Grant - Stars
Memphis - I'll Do Whatever You Want
Ben Globerman - Pirate Games
Racoon Bandit - Train Song
Beast - Mr. Hurricane
Janet Panic - Lousy Wife
Buck 65 - Indestructible Sam
The Wheat Pool - Lefty
Luke Doucet - Broken One
Julie Doiron - Consolation Prize
Sam Roberts - The Canadian Dream
Young Rival - Poisonous Moves
David Vertesi - Gentlemen Say
HotKid - Yours and Mine
Attack In Black - Half Moon On The City High
The Creepshow - Creatures of the Night
Great Lake Swimmers - Gonna Make it Through This Year
Blurtonia - Foxy by Proxy
Laura Peek and the Winning Hearts - Stay Sharp
The Love Machine - Love Is On Your Side
Elk - Shaking Hands 3:46 CBC Radio 3
Tacoma Hellfarm Tragedy - True Love Killed My True Love's Love For Me
J.J. Ipsen - DaDaDa
The Five Hole Band - (Thinking 'Bout Your) Five Hole
Gramercy Riffs - Call Me

Yeah... Bit of a purge there of stuff that I'd basically started just skipping past to get to the meat. 28 songs heading off on new adventures to be replaced by...

In With the New
The Super Friendz - 10lbs.
Mocky - Birds Of A Feather
Blue Hawaii - Blue Gowns
Extra Happy Ghost - So At One
Long Long Long - Mandarin Collars With Women
Arcade Fire - Wake Up
Royal Canoe - Me Loving Your Money
The Organ - Memorize The City
Suuns - Gaze
Imaginary Cities - Marry The Sea
Oh No! Yoko - 90s Kids
Young Liars - Marathon
Braids - Same Mum
Yukon Blonde - Brides Song
Handsome Furs - Repatriated
Austra - Lose It
Pure - Chocolate Bar
Junior Battles - Birthdayparties Vs. Punkroutine
Arcade Fire - Empty Room
Two Hours Traffic - Better Sorry Than Safe
The Bicycles - Won't She Be Surprised
Zeus - Permanent Scar
The Sadies - Another Year Again
Slow Down, Molasses - Light
Metal Kites - The Missionary
Adaline - Famous For Fire
The Swallows - Not To Be In Love
Timber Timbre - Creep On Creepin' On - fastest drop ever. On further play through, want nothing to do with it.

28 27 new songs. The purge was coming anyways, but the fact that it's been a really productive few months certainly didn't hurt things.

As always, to be found over here