For all Steam users out there

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What two posts in one day from the original recluse himself. Yeah but this one is important.

No matter what do NOT download Stubbs the Zombie from Valve's Steam service.

See I bolded, italicized, and underlined; so you know I mean business. But seriously, this game is broken. I downloaded it because, hey it was like five bucks, and seemed like an amusing concept. But every time I try to load it up the game all I see is flattened out mess. The width seems proper but the height is restricted the mid quarter of my monitor. Flatter than a sandwich that was sat on by a fat man. Can't even hit the windows key to exit out, fortunately game developers have a habit of putting the "Quit Game" option at the bottom of the game menu, so through blind guessing I was able to escape that horror. I've tried deleting and re-downloading the local files, updating my drivers (they were already up to date), and trying all manner of options in compatibility mode. Nothing.

The most promising results I've had was when I checked the "run in 640x480 resolution" option in compatibility mode. And it worked, menus were suddenly manageable. Granted large portions of the screen were cut off due to 800x600 being the lowest resolution supported, so blind menu navigation was still necessary in some spots. But I figured if I could change the resolution in the options menu it would work out. WRONG, after setting the option to my desired resolution the game says that it must restart the game for the changes to take place; annoying but fairly normal. Restarting the game only seems to reset the options menu to default settings.

I was a little hot at that point. So I sent a complaint to Aspyr's support staff.Their response: your graphics card and OS may not be compatible. Try running the game in Windows 98/ME compatibility mode and updating your drivers. But remember compatibility with a GeForce 8600 GT is not 100% guaranteed.

Here are a few outside facts for the sake of perspective:

The GeForce 7800 is listed among compatible cards. An 8600 is but one generation removed from the 7800. I can understand them saying screw you five-ten years down the road, but come on; if a game can't make it through the next generation of GPUa then it has some serious problems. The brings me to my next fact.

I downloaded the ID Super Pack from Steam. Freaking Ultimate Doom, a DOS game, runs better through an emulator than Stubbs ever has.

So yeah, I'm totally buying the whole XP SP3 is too modern and an 8600 GT too obscure argument. :roll:

I suppose I could try writing a script or something to force the resolution of Stubbs to something usable. But according to the Steam forums I'd only have more problems to look forward to. So it's likely not worth the effort. I'd rather the developer clean up their own mess.

For your own good stay away.

-Chet_Jones

Just checking in with you...

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Hello internet people... I've not faded into the darkness quite yet, though some days I'm damn close to it. What with all the economic madness, politics, expensive gas, kidney stones, death in the family, and my professors all but saying that they will break me. But enough about that... Onto business.

Last episode I showed off screen shots from the project I was working on for my Game Design course and I think it prudent of me to tell you, my precious few readers, how that turned out. I'd say it was a success; the professor was wowed by my brilliance and I made out with an easy A for the course. Good thing too because Assembly Language was rough...

Now onto this semester. Outside of a couple of math courses I've been putting off there really isn't all that much that would be interesting to the layman. I am taking an Artificial Intelligence course, but the teacher is a little batty, and the book is just horrible. But there's only one teacher for the course and therefore I have to tough it out. Another issue is that she, the professor is a woman, has taken an interest in me. Nothing illicit mind you dirty, dirty internet people, but rather I've suddenly found myself as her goto guy. Whenever she wants a response from the class and doesn't get one, which is always because at any given time roughly 60% of the class is asleep, she'll hover over to where I'm standing and ask me point blank. I guess she finds it amusing when I liken class inheritance to Taco Bell menu items. Yeah I'm weird... even by computer science standards; at least I can still interact with normal humans.

Another big turning point at school is that I've finally decided upon a minor: Information Assurance. Granted for a Computer Science degree they recommend a minor in math, but this complements my skills and interests better, and doesn't look too weird when paired against my major. Besides, course like cryptography and computer forensics are just too cool to pass up.

My current interests:

Music:

Psychostick

Scars on Broadway

Probot

TV:

Fringe

My Name is Earl

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

Burn Notice

Anime/Manga:

Love Junkies- not for youngin's

My Balls- also not for youngin's

Darker than Black- not for youngin's

Allumage- a one-shot from the writer of Elfen Lied

Saikano- anime is okay, manga is better, not for youngin's

And lastly, RIP Toonami.

-Chet_Jones, Comeback King

Chet has pictures

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Meh, haven't been around much as of late. But I won't give alx the satisfaction of using "I'm going to go lie down now" as yet another epitaph. Kind of hard finding time for internet escapism when school kicks in, what with courses like assembly language and data structures eating up large portions of my brain. For once I don't have a lot to say. So as a happy consolation I'll entertain the whole three of you that will read this with screen shots from the game I'm working on for school:

Beach Front

ss1

ss2

Answers to questions that I know will be asked:

Did you really make this, and if so are you on your own on this one?

It's a group project, and I've been designated level design guy, so it was me that crafted the map. And for once I actually ended up with a relatively talented group of lads. I only have to threaten swift death on a bi-weekly basis.

Why are you the level designer?

Because as a group we're a little weak in the graphics department and I agreed to fill in for whatever was necessary. I'm new to this sort of thing and as such it's far from perfect. On the plus side it's the digital equivalent of playing in a sandbox and as such is very good for my ego. (I've found myself screaming at my computer "Bow to my will electronic slave" every time something looks just right.)

Why does everything look like it belongs in Tribes?

Because we're using the same game engine. I'll admit it, I paid for a license for the Torque Game Engine. It's what the ****is being taught to and it's well-coded and stable, which is nice because I've had to deal with some weird stuff while dealing with open source engines. Also they included the source code for the engine. The engine is written in C++, the language I'm most familiar with, and as such I am quite capable of altering it to suit my needs. Which as part of the license I'm allowed to do. Though, for now I'll let things more or less be. I'm actually getting graded for what I produce and accordingly I need it to be running smoothly. On the other hand that's why the Computer Gods gave us DVD burners, so we'll see.

What can you tell us about this game?

At present it's some sort of nameless RPG set on an island, (I'm lazy and don't feel like building up an entire planet of material, besides I only have fifteen weeks to work on this). It's your basic sword and sorcery fare. I know, highly original, but a game such as this has some merits. For one we don't have to be as thorough with collision detection as we would in an action game; ala DMC, pallete swaps for enemies and equipment are pretty standard, even among the industry and pretty much anyone can figure it out. Basically RPGs allow for some shortcuts, not that I'm wanting to put out anything half-assed, it's just that realistically (even with Google Groups) getting together and exchanging our work is difficult. It was more important for us to a complete game at the end of the semester rather than a gimmicky one. That and at the onset of this project we sat down and talked about the kinds of games we all like, to get ideas, and RPG was something we all agreed on.

What's up with the blue guy in all the shots?

He's a place-holder for the player controlled character. I like to include him in screenshots because it provides a sense of scale. And while I'm at it, the red lines near the mountain area marks the edge of the world.

What sort of software are you using?

Torque comes with it's own editors so I'm using those for the landscape stuff. But for interior stuff and environmental objects; trees, bushes, severed hands... I'm using Blender, its an open source alternative to 3DS Max. It's a little intimidating at first but with a little experimentation it isn't insurmountable. And besides, it's well documented online. If you're interested at all in 3D graphics you should give it a Google.

...and to think I said that I didn't have a lot to say. Whatever, I'll post more updates when and if I feel like it. Until then, take care my faceless internet phantasms.

-Chet

Phew... done at last

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By done I of course mean with school... this semester anyway. I was swamped the whole time, especially the last month. Though a fair amount of it was self inflicted. I opted out of a few of my semester finals, choosing to do projects instead. In my opinion it was the better choice. In case you didn't know, I'm a computer science major, *cough* programmer *cough*. Anyway, projects are the better option because the only real way to learn this stuff is to use it. That and the compliler will find most of your errors, and fortunately mine are mostly syntax.

Play with it, crash your computer a few times, and scream at the compiler for not compiling because you're too stupid to notice that you confused the insertion operator with the extraction operator and the compiler didn't explicitly tell you that was what's wrong. Ah, such is the life of a novice programmer. But I think I've finally found my niche/happy place. For anal retentive, egomaniacal, nerd-boys such as myself it's good stuff.

Also something... unpleasant happend this semester. I actually had a professor up and disappear a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving (Nov. 22 for non-Americans). Gone, no warning, only rumors left in his wake. He was a pretty good guy too. Anyway, they brought in a new guy. This "new" professor was one of those old-school programmer types, we're talking FORTRAN. Spent the whole time talking about literals vs. variables, strings vs. character arrays, and logical vs. bitwise operators. His eyes... so cold, his voice was like white noise, and he smelled of death... that and he was one of those guys who turned out the lights and used Power Point in his lectures. I hate teachers like that. So dull. That wasn't even the worst of it. The new guy had thrown out all the work we had done previously and gave us like a million projects to do. Basically the class went from easy A to tedious in no time flat. I've come to despise Javascript

School wasn't all bad however. Of interest to the majority of you I'm considering the Video Game option of my degree. Basically a Comp/Sci degree with a minor in graphic arts. But it looks hella fun. I'll have to shell out $180 for a liscense to the game engine we're using, it sounds like a lot, but I honestly spent more on my books for calculus.

Things seem to have been busy around here as well. The CGU is still active and what's this!?! Alx is leaving the Soldiers of Wii! Scandalous. I'd throw my name in the hat for leadership save for three personal caveats: I'm busy, haven't posted there for ages, and I don't own a Wii. Anyway, expect to see more of me until the next semester begins.

Ever want to strangle someone with their own intestines?

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Sorry... my free time has been nonexistent this week. The short answer is that I had to pick up the slack for two lazy people.

The long answer is as follows:

Damn group projects, why is it that I always end up with the laziest people possible? I suppose a little back story is necessary. In my C++ class we were separated into groups that, ideally, would work together on projects during the course of the semester. I didn't get to choose, I was assigned.

There are only two girls in the class, both of which ended up in my group, and both are proving to be excess baggage. That and there's another guy in our group.

One girl has been totally unaccessible, which is ridiculous, because on day one we all exchanged phone numbers, email, IM, hell the other guy in our group even set up a forum for us to communicate through. Nothing, she won't pick up her phone, respond to email, login to the forum, or even show up for class.

The second girl is just as bad, she nods her head and agrees to anything, but when it comes time to deliver; she's not around. She's across town getting her braces tightened, talking to her adviser, driving a friend around... she tends to be anywhere but where she's supposed to be, and always at the last second too. That and she's the type to throw up her hands and say "I just don't get it," before she even tries. I despise people like that, you don't learn by not doing (tee-hee double negative), try damn it. And if you can't make it work, ask.

As you all well know, I'm the type to explain things in EXCRUCIATING detail. But what you don't know is that I'm the type that can always find time to help people with their studies, I would have driven out to the school, a library, Star Bucks, where ever she wanted and worked with her until she got it. All on my own time too, I've done it before, I'll probably do it again. Hell, I've done that for people whom I don't currently share a course with. All I ask is that they show up and make an effort. I'm practically a saint. And if not me, then why not the teacher? This woman's got a doctorate in the subject, has real world experience, and more office hours than anyone. I thought I was past this crap when I completed all my freshman level courses.

The other guy in my group, he's alright, he shows up when we say we're going to a meeting, he's inexperienced, but picks up quick enough to generate working code. Sorry for the rant, just needed to purge some pent up emotion.

Look everybody, my profile has a theme...

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Changed up the look of my little corner on GS. Yeah, I know, the little monster was pretty cool. But I've had him for a while now and decided that it was time for him to retire. I may put him up somewhere else though, you know, for posterity. If you can't tell the theme of my profile is The Amazing Screw-on Head. Freaking awesome show, it is based on a comic book by Mike Mignola, the creator of Hellboy. Now I know that the live action Hellboy movie kind of sucked, but that shouldn't turn you off to this. This show is hilarious, I mean where else can you here David Hyde Pierce (that guy from Frasier) say things like "I made water in my pantaloons." Really, it's the best thing I've seen since Invader Zim, sadly it didn't make it past the pilot, hence my homage. Buy, Rent, do a search on Google Videos; I don't care, just see it. And speaking of things you should see: Kimi Ga Nozomu Eien, best anime I've seen in a while, watch it, tear up a little and thank me. Sorry, I can't stick around and tell you about it, my brother missed his bus and needs a ride. But before I leave, here's a GIF I made:

I know about the AdGif text, it's what I get for using trial software. But besides that, I like it. I still have the stills, so when I get the time and some other software I'll redo it.

Toodles,

Chet_Jones

Edit- Found some free-ware, so here's the new GIF:

Hmm... the first one looks a little sharper, less faded, and has a smaller file size; 545 K vs 682 K (no big deal for me), yet I don't feel like shilling out $40 for the slight increase in quality nor to get rid of the text. On the plus side the second animation seems a little smoother, and artifacts less. I'm sure I can do better if I use the program more, I'll live.

T-E-X-A-S (that's how you spell Texas)

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I'M BACK!!! Hoorah and hooray. Been home for only an hour, took a shower, ate some pizza... it's all gravy. Except for the part where my dad was in the room next door, Texas was great. It's been about five years since I had visited Dallas. I used to live there way back when, but had to move when I was ten. Seems like the only time I get to visit is when a cousin gets married.Friday was spent just getting to Dallas, it's about a six hour drive from where I live. I ended up driving Mom and my brother down there. Mom's knee has been acting up so she's afraid to drive, and my brother isn't old enough for his driver's liscense, so it was up to me to get them down there. We just barely made it to my cousin's rehearsal dinner. I got a bit lost along the way, but we made it, even got to check into the hotel. Dad was decidedly miffed at us though, the dinner was at 7:30, we got there at an oh so scandalous 7:35. Oh well, at least the food was good, and the margaritas were already paid for. Slept pretty good that night.

Saturday was spent mostly in the hotel room, my cousin was getting married at five and I didn't have much time for my usual brand of tom-foolery. We went to the ceremony, it was nice, the only part of the vow my cousin messed up on was the part where he promised to be faithful... nothing like getting laughed at by your family/inlaws on your wedding day. The reception was the best... OPEN BAR!!! Nothing brings strangers together quite like alcohol. We drank, we danced, we ate, we drank... I held my own pretty well, but alas, there has always been one person who could best me in the drinking arts, not my Dad, Uncle, or any of my cousins; the one person who can consistently outdrink me would be dear old Mom. No joke, and it's not like I didn't put forth an effort, four glasses of Jack Daniels, three margaritas, two glasses of wine and some champagne; all this and more went down my throat, and Mom still outdrank me, it wasn't even close. And to add insult to injury she was on muscle relaxers for her knee. I know when I'm beat, so I quit before I got belligerent. My cousin and his new bride rode off in a Rolls-Royce, it was hilarious because the driver curbed the vehicle a bit as he was leaving. Jackass, who curbs a Royce? Needless to say I slept like a baby that night.

The rest of the week was a blur, I visited the art museum in Dallas, went to Six Flags for the first time in ten years. Drove down to San Antonio and visited the Alamo. Then we went to Corpus Christi, I wanted to spend a little time at the beach, but alas, the gods were not on my side and it ended up raining the whole time. So instead I went to movies and saw Chuck and Larry (biggest game of gay chicken I've ever seen) and later on my brother and I went and saw The Simpsons Movie, I recommend both. At some point I got bored and hoofed it from my hotel room to a nearby Border's to pick a few things to tide me over during the storm, I grabbed a couple of CDs (Era Vulgaris by Queens of the Stoneage and Zeitgeist by Smashing Pumpkins, I need to listen to them a bit more before I can make a call on them) I also grabbed that new Harry Potter, because I'm a sucker, started reading the series when I was in sixth grade and I'm the type stubborn enough to want to see how it ends. All in all I'm relaxed and ready for school to begin, good thing too, because it starts the twentieth.

And he's outta here...

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I'm packed up and ready to go to Dallas for the week. I know it's kind of anal, but I've cleaned my living space and emptied my fridge of things likely to expire before I get back (well actually my supposed friends did that :lol: ); don't want to come home to a stinky fridge and a messy place. Sorry that I haven't been terribly active this week, had to make some preparations for the trip and also worked some overtime; what's vacation without a little spending money? See you a week from Monday.

I'll be gone for a while

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First off, it won't be like that last time. It'll only span about ten days. You see, I got a cousin that's getting married soon so I'll be headed to Dallas the twentieth, next Friday, and I'll be spending the week down there. I should be back by that next Sunday, but probably won't feel like doing anything till the following Monday, the thirtieth. The people this affects most directly would be those in the CGU, particularly the Brawl. It looks like we won't be finishing that game before I have to leave. If anyone would like to take over for me that week, PM me and we'll work something out.

I think I remember hearing that the room I'm staying in has Internet access, but I can't say for sure. Normally I'd be fully aware of this sort of thing, but it wasn't me that made the reservation. It was my Mom, she offered to pay for my room under the condition that my brother stays with me. This was probably more self-preservation than anything. You see, my Dad's a total cheapskate and if Mom didn't strike a deal with me it'd likely be four people, Mom, Dad, Sis, and Bro; confined to a single room. And it's not like either of my sibs are little kids, my sister is nineteen and my brother is fifteen. Yeah, imagine the horror of trying to get them to share a bed, shudders. The point is that I may be able to check in on you Internet people here and there, but I feel that those times will be so few and far between that it would be for the best if you just assumed I wasn't going to be around.

On to GS news, I was looking at my level growth yesterday, just over 98% and could of sworn that by today I'd finally level out of Metal Slime. But wouldn't you know it, it stops at 99.8%, :D evil. On the plus side I got three shiny new emblems this week.

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