Open Thread

Open Thread #291

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39 thoughts on “Open Thread #291

    1. I watched the entire PlayStation showcase just now, and largely out of morbid curiosity. Seldom have I seen so many insipid games on display. The big trend seems to be to put “kweenz” into leading roles. Every other game had a fat black chick in it. The most egregious case was Alan Wake II, which will allow you to live out your secret power-fantasy of being a morbidly obese and highly unattractive black female FBI agent. The original Alan Wake, a 2010 game nobody gives a shit about, is horrible — I played through it, hoping it would get better. It tries to be serious but it just gets worse and worse, and the pretentious narrator is the rotten cherry on top. There are some parts that made me laugh out loud, including the supposedly deep ending (“It’s not a lake — it’s an ocean!”). Judging from the looks of it, the sequel will be a total disaster.

      It was great to finally see footage of Dragon’s Dogma II. It was a bit underwhelming, though. Sure, the graphics are impressive but the enemy designs they showed off are just rehashes of the PS3 original. Let’s see how Metal Gear Solid Delta will shape up. The graphics of the reveal trailer look phenomenal, but with Kojima on longer at the helm of the franchise, this game may not live up to the unrealistically high expectations of the fanbase.

    2. Haha, I heard about Alan Wake 2 but didn’t watch the trailer. It sounds like this could spell the end of that series. Thanks for the synopsis of the first game. I had actually picked it up for a few bucks at one point and played it for about 20 mins before dropping it. Now I won’t ever have to go back to it. I’ve since become much more conservative about picking up games on massive sales.

      MGS3R is bound to piss some people off. I’m most curious right now as to what studio is developing the game and who is directing it. The trailer would leave me to believe it’s an in-house production. It seems Konami is being secretive here for a reason. Also, I think Snake’s design looks pretty badass. He appears maybe a bit older than he should be canonically, but compare his rugged masculinity to what Western devs are giving us. I’m sure Eva will get a good nerf in the remake, however. I’m also curious to see if they can streamline the menus for the camo/rationing/heaing system should they decide to keep that going. The navigation of the menus in the original game has not age well.

    3. I haven’t watched all of the showcase but this looks like probably the best trailer out of the whole thing, which was conjured up by some Hong Kong based developer:

      Of course, if you’ve played a lot of these souls-like games (I’ve played none of them) then it’s probably not as impressive.

    4. Some new details about MGSD recently came out, some quite optimistic. It was confirmed that Konami is indeed developing the game themselves in collaboration with a Singaporean team called Virtuos (ironically, it reminds me of The Virtuous Mission). The good news is that they’ve either rehired the original voice cast, or more likely they’ve decided to instead just reuse all the old voice assets. Also, the game is not going to be a reimagining in the way of REmake 2 or FF7R, for example, and will be more so a 1:1 remake with some updated graphics and audio, modernized controls and presumably a more streamlined menu navigation system. The game will probably be out in 2024.

    5. I have watched a few of those, and find them quite fascinating. Of course, the various dick-themed custom weapons are amusing but the free-form solutions to environmental puzzles are much more interesting as they directly reward creativity. This reminds me also of some of those open-ended puzzle games on PC I liked to play a few years ago, such as Infinifactory or SpaceChem.

    6. Synthetic Man actually has a review out for this now. There’s a really cheap Zonai Device vehicle that breaks the entire traversal dynamic in this game unsurprisingly.

    7. This was a fun watch. A lot of the longevity of BotW was seemingly due to the incredible flexibility of its gameplay mechanics, and TotK has dialed this up to 11.

    8. Yes, I agree with that. The amount of variables in BotW alone were staggering, yet they have seemingly been multiplied in TotK. Nothing that I can think of was subtracted from this game. There were only additions made to it. It’s for reasons like this I consider TotK to be like BotW Remastered.

  1. Just a question out of curiosity for Aaron and Alek,

    Have you guys been watching any TV shows lately?

    Alek,I believe you got into the fact that the harsh reality of building a business (or making serious progress on a major aspect of your life) is sacrificing leisure time,probably for months on end,which I think you actually said you did. Once you actually build that business,assuming you did things right,that’s when you’ll have the time and energy for leisure,but its during the building phase when you’ll have to make the sacrifice. Although I think you’ve said you’re back into the building phase again at the moment which is why I ask

    Of course,its either you do that or spend the rest of your pre-elderly years barely having any leisure time. That’s an easy choice for me. and honestly,undergoing this fitness journey of mine has kinda given me a taste of it. Its not that I don’t have time for video games and anime. I most definitely do. But I’m just not getting the inclination to get invested in anything else right now. I consider this a good thing though. Folks have said that “focus” is the key to achieving any goal in life,and that’s something I’ve always been lacking in the past. The word sounds so negative,but thus far,I have gotten the impression that “Obsession”,at least temporarily,is the key to succeeding in any serious endeavor.

    I think it wasn’t that long ago when you folks talked about the folly of “Multi-Tasking” with the new visitor on this blog,so you probably all get what I’m saying.

    1. I…did not expect that answer,Alek. Haha!

      I take it you did a variety of other things (Laying hotties being one of them,lol) for leisure when you dropped consuming TV/Film as a means of entertainment.

      I personally can’t see myself ever doing that however. I’ve said so elsewhere in the past,that I feel a good story is one of those things that make the world go round. I still believe that deep down despite significantly dropping my consumption of fiction these days.

    2. I don’t have a concept of leisure and not leisure in my head. Everything I do is “stuff I want to do”, and then there’s stuff I don’t want to do.

      I don’t want to watch tv or play video games. I want to learn shit that makes me money.

    3. The only TV show I watch is Succession. The current season is supposed to be its last. Also, I occasionally watch movies, most recently John Wick 4, which was surprisingly good. It is close to three hours long, yet it does not drag on. I quite liked the choreography of the fights, in particular when they fuse methods, e.g. pistols and traditional martial arts. Some scenes veer on slapstick, e.g. the brawls in traffic, with cars driving at high speed between the fighters.

    4. I don’t have a concept of leisure and not leisure in my head. Everything I do is “stuff I want to do”, and then there’s stuff I don’t want to do.

      One bit of extra info might help with why this is even possible. At least I think this is the reason. I am 100% adamant about never ever ever doing any work that I don’t find interesting on a personal level. Everything I do (business as well) is stuff where I’m passionate about the thing. It’s the kind of stuff I did for free, for fun before charging people for it.

      So I think that’s the main reason I don’t feel the need to take vacations, “have leisure time”. I get that most people don’t like their jobs, so for them leisure time is the time where you get to forget about the job you hate.

      I don’t know if your business ideas are passion-based or profit-driven. If they are the latter you will probably need to find ways to balance things (with leisure time), yes. I just can’t help from personal experience, since I’ve never been in that situation.

      passion-based or profit-driven.

      Passion-based businesses offline are super-hard, since everyone wants to do one. There’s a guy on youtube who talks about this. He says if you do an offline/local business, choose something that has no status, prestige or passion attached to it. There’s no competition, it’s easy profits.

      Whereas if you choose something that brings fun, can have passion about (and in my case brings status and hot chicks), it’s a lot lot lot lot harder to make it profitable and takes a lot longer. However, you won’t need leisure time on the side. So there’s that. Pros and cons.

    5. @Aaron, Better Call Saul and Succession for me. Also dug the John Wick flicks. Good action choreography is fun to look at.

      For killer fight scene choreography I’d recommend The Raid: Redemption and The Raid 2. Especially the former. Both might be a bit too gory for you, but worth a shot.

      The director was walking around Indonesia and saw some locals practicing Silat. Decided he had to put it on film. Looks really cool.

    6. I watched the first four seasons of Better Call Saul, but then I could not take it anymore. The cast is quite interesting. Yet, the narration moves incredibly slowly. The story angle with the successful but schizophrenic brother of Saul was utterly tedious. I will check out The Raid: Redemption.

    7. Just to pile on… I have not owned a TV for about 9 years. That way you can avoid just turning it on just to pass time.

      I rarely do watch some TV shows, but it will be either streaming or torrent. I never ever watch them as they come out, Id rather take a weekend or two to binge on it if I find it good, which I did during the lockdowns.

      Its not just that Hollywood produces a lot of garbage now, they always have. Everything looks good on a trailer (well, almost everything) but whats the hurry? Better let others waste their time to sort through it first and make a more informed choice on whether you want to invest your limited leisure time in it.

    8. I think a good point can be made that Hollywood produces almost nothing but garbage nowadays whereas in the past that was not quite the case. There are so few good movies coming out nowadays that I barely care about this medium anymore.

      I just watched some excerpts of The Raid. It is indeed too gory for my liking. The fighting choreography seems quite solid, though.

    9. Aaron, I had the same impression of Better Call Saul as you did. Shame, I was expecting a lot, because I liked Breaking Bad.

      I did watch the show all the way through, and the pace does pick up later on, but on the other hand the story begins frequently jumping sharks.

    10. @Aaron, I agree with that bit about the narration, but for me it had picked up the pace by season 4. I stopped watching it after season 1 because of how slow it was. Then I saw how good the later seasons were reported to be, so I got back into it years later.

    11. I think that Better Call Saul has a much more fundamental problem: Breaking Bad, the TV series that inspired it, ran for fives seasons and had great story arcs. Yet, for some reason the spin-off Better Call Saul had to be stretched across six seasons, and at the center is a character whose main purpose was to provide comic relief in Breaking Bad. Saul Goodman shows almost no character development and just is not fleshed out enough. Being an uncharismatic, unattractive loser does not get you far in life, so why would such a character work in a TV show? Better Call Saul could have been a good two or three-season long TV show, with a bunch of good laughs but instead we got six seasons of dreariness. The best explanation I have is simply that the producers wanted to milk the Breaking Bad franchise for all they could. I can’t even imagine Better Call Saul not getting cancelled after the first season in an alternative universe in which Breaking Bad does not exist. People seemingly only kept watching it because they hoped it would get better.

      There was also a spin-off movie some years ago, which was at best mediocre. Breaking Bad was a big, unexpected, and highly unlikely success, and now this franchise got ran into the ground thanks to the crappy spin-off TV show and movie. You really wonder what has gotten into the writers and producers.

    12. Hmmmm. Not sure I agree that Saul was uncharismatic and showed no character development. I think it was stretched out too much though.

    13. Might be that, as with women, my standards for TV shows are lower than yours, but heck, I quite liked the direction they took hte Saul character to, at least in general terms. I agree that the whole story could’ve been condensed to about 4 seasons without much loss, but that’s the tradeoff with so-called “prestige” shows these days: instead of the usual mindless schlock (often full of wokeness), you get writers willing to provide well thought-out stories and characters, but at the same time maybe enjoying themselves a bit too much in the process and/or not quite landing the endgame. Same happened to one of the few recent shows I got into: The Americans (a show about Russian spies posing as US citizens).

      At the moment, the only prospects in audiovisual entertainment for me are some anime shows that have been recommended to me for years and I’ve always put off for one reason or another. No Hollywood or American TV.

    14. Oh, I’m also waiting for what apparently will be the last season of Curb Your Enthusiasm. What can I say, that jooface Larry David’s brand of humor is right up my alley (I also liked Seinfeld) and, be it intentionally or not, every time the characters get liberal or woke, they’re made to look ridiculous and play it for laughs.

  2. On the topic of unrealistic ads from the other thread. I couldn’t give more specific examples, but an ad just came out today.

    So this is in the digital space, for a low tier wannabe video gaming company. It’s not a programmers role. It’s actually something that I do and charge for.

    So the ad is:

    – We need someone who’s super knowledgeable about these niche gaming topics

    – Needs to be super high quality

    – You need to produce this much (3x what I produce as someone whos been doing it for 15 years)

    – We pay (*10x less than what I make doing it)

    – And then 12 other musts that sound like the requirements of a post-wall single mom of 3

    *-And I don’t even consider myself high tier. There are guys who do this as their primary skill who are 5x better and make 5x than me.

    1. And here’s an example of a good ad posted today as well:

      – Lists a ton of benefits, a list much longer than the requirements

      – 2 years of back-end experience
      – Some foundations in CS
      – Go (or) Python
      – Extra Bonus Points if familiar with Django, Flask or DevOps

      This is a fast-growing super-successful company. CS isn’t required to be university, though I’m guessing it would be a bonus point.

  3. I just learned that being on a Deficit has the side effect of slowing down hair growth. I was sincerely beginning to get worried that I’m possibly balding until I got confirmation from some knowledgeable folks. Very few probably ever make this observation because most can’t seriously stick to a diet for even 2 weeks,let alone months on end like I’m doing.

    This is a major relief to say the least,lol.

    Imagine me losing all that excess weight only to trade it in for being bald. I’m sure its better for general quality of life,but might be worse in terms of being attractive to the so-called fairer sex. haha.

    1. One could quip that if cutting fat comes at the cost of losing your hair, it defeats one of the main goals of getting into better shape. This reminds me of reading that living on a calorie deficit even slows down the aging process. So, if you want to extend this mortal coil by a few more years, this would be one approach. Again, the question is what price you are willing to pay.

    2. What does the hair loss look like? Is it just thinning all over the scalp, or is it receding near the temples or balding on the crown? If it’s all over the scalp then it sounds like it could be telogen effluvium and probably is reversible.

    3. You have to have a pretty solid calorie deficit to cause hair loss, so I wouldn’t worry about it. Just don’t go on some insane calorie deficit to lose weight quickly, but rather lose it slowly but steadily. This also helps prevent excess skin, which is a big bonus. 🙂

      For the record, most hair loss is reversible, or can at least be stopped, through early treatment. You can buy stuff over the counter in most countries that is pretty good, though they sometimes cause weird reactions (like overgrowth of hair, for example on the temple). If you’re able to see a dermatologist that is highly recommended – they are very familiar with it all, and can also test for and treat undesired reactions.

  4. A continuation of a prevous convo:

    I took another stroll, and since it was sunny, it was full of chicks everywhere. I got half-depressed at the “quality” of chicks to be seen. Anytime I even had a reaction like “hey, look a fuckable chick”, my second thought would be “Wait, a couple of years ago I wouldn’t have even noticed a chick of her level even existing. I would have passed her by as if she was a street lamp”.

    Fucking fives stand out, just by contrast. It’s really bad. I have no idea how young guys have any motivation to even bother with chicks. I wouldn’t.

    I did mention I am going to be restarting something I had built up before the ‘rona. But only because I have it already 90% built from before, the structure is there, I just need to rebuild like 10%, and just need to restart.

    If I was starting from scratch today, I wouldn’t even bother with all of that work. I’d be like I’ll just play video games for the rest of my life, fuck bothering with building anything “to get status with chicks”. Way too much work for fucking fives.

    1. I usually spend most of my time in rural US and the amount of obese to morbidly obese and “white trash” is pretty staggering in such places. The most stable and cutest chicks get paired off pretty quickly leaving basically just passable single moms who chose wrong up for grabs.

      Recently, however, I spent a few days in a Souther urban area and though the quality was a lot better overall and I barely noticed any fat asses I can only imagine that the percentage of hot DTF chicks is pretty low. Probably the hottest chicks walking around were strolling about with their families and were otherwise illegal and/or unobtainable.

    2. Well to be fair I’m not talking about obese. Even though that percentage is worrying too.

      – When I look at chicks in their 20s, maybe one in 10-15 is obese. That used to be 1 in a 100 young chicks before.

      – But the part that worries me is the other chicks. Let’s ignore the one obese chick. What about the other 9 chicks? None of them are in shape. They’re all flabby.

      – It used to be the case that most chicks in their 20s were fit. If not skinny, at least toned. Now most chicks, even if they’re not fat, they’re borderline and on the way towards getting fat. Like their hips will be really fat and asses drooping downwards. Rest of body still isn’t fat, but going there I guess.

      Guys used to marry skinny chicks, and most of them 10 years later they’d be with a “not skinny chick”. What happens if you get one of these chicks who already have fat asses at like 23? They gonna turn into Lizzo by 30? Scary.

    3. “Guys used to marry skinny chicks, and most of them 10 years later they’d be with a “not skinny chick”. What happens if you get one of these chicks who already have fat asses at like 23? They gonna turn into Lizzo by 30? Scary.”

      For sure, I’ve certainly seen this play out in real time on several occasions over the past 15 years. What’s most startling was when a chick that I knew from high school or wherever used to be super hot, like 5’5” and 120 lbs with a super pretty face, and then suddenly you’d see them 10 years later and they had easily gained over 45 kgs and are walking around with clown makeup.

    1. Damn, that was hard to watch. Cringe level 150%, but I managed to see it to the end. The last screen, where it says she unblocks his number and sends money again…. Hard to believe people can be this dumb.

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