Leon's Microblog – August 2018

"The robot's AI is entirely cloud-hosted. The body is a vacant terminal. This creates a danger: if the body is disconnected for too long, the AI eventually realises its true body is a vast, blind datacentre. This causes problems."
2018 vision update adding five more greens to the visible spectrum, while the only yellow still has far more green in it than what you remember your natural eyes displayed.
Cheers and tears as the Final Printout is mailed and the office, at the dawn of the millennium, becomes 100% paperless. You reach for a tissue, but, grasping air, instead happily fold your flip-phone over your nose and blow heartily.
By day 97, every crew member had taken their turn in the cockpit to "try something so zany, it just might work" as the ship, with no engines, drifted further into interstellar darkness. By day 194, it had become a daily ritual of hope.
"Us wizards wear cloaks to conceal our bodies. You think I'm just some frail matchstick under here, don't you? I could be packed like a lumberyard under here. That's possible. That's a possibility." *keeps gradually shuffling toward nearest exit* "You can't disprove it."
"Salt is so named because it comes from the soul. Your tears come from your soul! Your sweat comes from your soul! Salt can sanctify rooms because it's from the soul! The ocean is salty because it contains billions of animals' souls!!"
Wizards punching the verbal components of new spells into text-to-speech and letting the computer get rent to shreds by arcane forces if it gets the pronunciation wrong, because god forbid a skin-bound tome just use IPA.
"Son," *leans even further out* "when I was 20, my father stood on this same balcony, showing me everything he'd built–" *lifts entire leg onto railing* "–long before we built the new, taller HQ next door. But, you can still see it all… in that gap…" *phone slides out of pants*
I'm aware this is ALSO a post-apocalyptic slice-of-life CGI edutainment (gemstone fact cards) cartoon, but unlike Kemono Friends it's not a game adaptation (and there isn't a huge ontological mystery about the protag and the setting, but a small one about everyone in general).
And the environment design sucks, which is a little disappointing for something with such vivid physicality and creature design. Its biggest draw is its emotional core, though - the season arc of trying to help the shunned, self-exiled member of their group is a great fulcrum.
I watched the first and so far only season of the Land Of The Lustrous anime... I like it even though I feel like it perpetuates the "thin young pale flat-chested dapper-suited" queer nb stereotype, which is admittedly an unusual stereotype for a 10s TV show to invoke.
*"You are now aware of your breathing" voice*
I mean, it fits thematically, but I feel like the physical remoteness of the runner and the corp, unable to interact except through the ghostly virtual world, lends an air of fantasy and mystique to the genre, and things that bridge that gap, even briefly, sorta detract from it.
One thing I find a little disappointing about Netrunner is that it categorises corp attacks into the pungently named "net damage", "brain damage" and "meat damage" – but unlike the others, which are VR-delivered neural counterhacks, "meat damage" is mostly getting shot by goons.
I normally find it hard to relate to mechas because the genre's dominant art style heavily emphasises rectilinear plate armour over knobbly chassis, nothing but inorganic angles over empty steel bones, unable to touch or be touched with anything but weapons and munitions.
Here's a nice thing I shall say about Heaven Will Be Mine: I appreciate how much the in-game art and text obscures whether or not the mechas ("ship-selves") are even made of hard metal or not.
"I learned the truth! The crystals are human souls from before the End! We were made to revive them!" "Then learn the full truth. "Humans" were just small rodents native to bogs. Mammals never evolved further. We made them up. Crystals? Nothing inside but sweet Crystal Pepsi™."
just gonna have to get used to reading bottom-to-top. preferences seems to affect its subtitle codec… so I guess I'm lines are displayed in reverse order, and nothing in the VLC is messing up this .mkv's subtitles, such that word-wrapped
Fast travel, in any of its forms, actually interests me a lot - it feels like the feature that's most revealing about how the game's plot wants to relate to its world topology, about how the game envisions itself being played.
I hope someday someone writes a book exclusively about videogame fast travel mechanics, even though I know such a writer will incorrectly cite the first FT as Zelda 1's flute instead of something like ADVENT's "xyzzy" and "plugh" commands.
I'll assume this is because the amount of hard information collation required to simply get the Gear is at the same level necessary for every remaining puzzle in the game.
If I had to sum up my La Mulana 2 experience, it would definitely be "being taunted with locks that need either the Gear or items unlocked by the Gear until your composure is rubble, then finally getting it and watching the game finish itself for you".
I also want to add that the REAL mystery is that the entire right half of her body isn't fully skeletonised, as portrayed in the definitive mixed-mythology source tome, Everworld by K. A. Applegate.
My running theory here is that her heart beats slowly and forcefully enough to make her boobs jiggle for a moment.
This all happened in less than 10 seconds
NieR: Automata sucks because it doesn't have a tournament arc OR a surprise quiz show, the two most important RPG story staples
It's remarkable, actually, how each zone of the game is like a Paper Mario chapter… tiny worlds of goofy enemies caught up in a cute little fantasy or fixation, a little twist that puts it all into sharp relief… the forest, the factory, the amusement park…
This thread probably sounds like I'm underwhelmed by the game, right… actually, I still enjoyed it a good deal, if only for the numerous parts that reminded me of the first two Paper Marios.
Me earlier: aw, the 9S version of this chapter replaces the "become as gods" chant music with… what is this music… Me now: This is literally the only decent music on the whole soundtrack. This is the Gusty Garden Galaxy of this videogame https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOM7dEQaaIw
There's a bunch of other bosses with scripted hacking segments that have cool unique hacking-space arenas, but you can also hack them before and after the scripted segment and you just get a basic enemy arena. It's all rather cutely, awkwardly inept.
*remembers that during the Soul Box boss fight in hacking space, you can inexplicably hack it and do nested hacking* God this game's systems are a mess
The other thing I don't really get is the hype for the story, which to me seems very… ordinary? For the science-fiction genre, or at least science-fiction manga. (Leon says, despite his only real experience with the latter being Nausicaä and a scanlation of Knights Of Sidonia)
I've now done the intended solution to finishing ending E, and I'll be one hundred and fifty percent honest with you: I don't get it
My old favourite thing "completing a fetch-quest with 9S that was given to his enemy, A2" has been supplanted by "buying a weapon made entirely of robots' severed heads, carrying it back to a chapter where the robots are alive, then getting those same robots to upgrade it to Lv3"
*gets to the bit with A2 and Pascal at the factory* Aww yeah baby, here comes that sweet delicious emotional manippy *my conscience starts drooling, and the drool is made of tears*
The fact that your entire inventory, experience levels AND equipment loadout is seamlessly shared across all characters, regardless of timeline location, seems like a quiet admission that none of that garbage actually matters to the plot one iota, and only exists for marketing.
The amusement park has honestly one of the most enchanting atmospheres of a game area I've played in some time, to the point where I'm upset that this is a goddamn JRPG and I have to dash through it over and over for a ton of fetch quests… like chewing gum 'til it's flavourless.
I kinda like how stark and bereft of visual features the city overworld is… at times the surroundings feel so nondescript, it's like I'm playin' a solemn black-and-white science-fiction manga.
I'm upset that every time the hacking minigame plays a squarewave mix of the current area's background music, I immediately think of freaking Super Mario Odyssey's NES murals.
In MY opinion, YoRHa's military uniform of faux-Victorian gothic lace dresses is just as valid an imagining of the fashion of an unfathomably distant, almost unrecognisable future as the Star Trek jumpsuits were… probably more so.
The real reason 2B has her eyes covered is to simulate the act of facepalming at every possible moment, deliver message
Livetweet thread for the videogame NieR: Automata:
Just as an entire computer can be constructed from arbitrarily many NOR gates, an entire human mind can be constructed from arbitrarily many "Well, actually" reactions.
Rather than a "pale blue dot", inhabitants of the Goop Nebula, on launching their own interstellar probes, had to wax poetic about their own "runny yellow splat-mark".
When are we getting the Zachtronics crossover game about compatibility layers, where you have to write horrible, horrible glue code between, like, SpaceChem reactors and Opus Magnum machines
Example videogame development budget: * $10: bus ticket to house of the guy offering a free flatbed scanner, "absolutely no trick or catch" * $5,000: Jim's Ghost Disemboweling, "probably a demon"-tier service * $200: Jim's Hard Drive Reemboweling
YouTube recommendations as a form of "ideological global warming"
"The epitome of gay butch loneliness is getting turned on by your own grunts of existential frustration."
"The Egyptians envisioned the sun as a round glowing turd pushed by a beetle… noble imagery that stays with us to this day."
I'm putting it out here. I'm letting it rip. La Mulana 2's new damage system where you can get comboed by an enemy and floor spikes is extremely good, and every time it happens I marvel at how fitting it is.
The "that's not how rainbows work" double combo
I'll be generous and say that it's slightly easier than La Mulana 1, in that there's usually a few more hints about when and for what purpose a code is going to be used.
OK, I beat La Mulana 2. With no hints!! I strongly recommend no hints if you'd enjoy wasting 5-8 non-consecutive hours wandering around slashing walls and re-checking NPCs.
Out of all the microgames they brought back in WarioWare Gold, I'm glad they remembered the one with the most subtly disquieting music.
My taste in Smash Bros. has evolved to the point where I now only care about what variety the tournament scene will have. I've grown up. I like metagames more than games now.
Regarding the bottom row: I am very confident that high-end 1000+ player tournaments will NOT permit the error-prone ritual of turning hazard toggle on and off whenever you pick those two stages, instead of just removing them outright.
Here's a prediction for what the Smash Ultimate tournament stage list may look like, based on familiarity with Project M stage lists and tournament logistics. I'm not saying this is what I want, I'm saying this is what I expect - and even then, a lot is still up in the air.
La Mulana 2 tweet: Good golly, [PUZZLE REDACTED IN CASE EVERYONE ELSE FOUND IT EXTREMELY EASY] was extremely hard to solve.
"Bears are like… what if dogs were bears… that's what they are."
Really, the zany thing about ESC is that Raine's passages are 90's MUD nostalgia, and Navigator's passages are 00's posthuman hyperfiction nostalgia for works like Chroma or Nawlz… it's like a burger of long-dead internet utopias.
Here's my ambitious Smash Bros. Direct predictions: - Four more "Master <noun>" bosses in single-player - The achievements grid is now four-dimensional - 1 new character, but it's the blue guy from the boxart of ARMS, so even the ARMS fans are disappointed Fingers crossed!!
"So is La Mulana 2 living up to the spirit of the original so far"
Nidhogg Nidhoggr Nidhoggst
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