Friday, March 11, 2011

And a Big Fuck You to... Wisconsin Gov. Walker and His State Legislature Cronies

If you've been watching the news at all, you're no doubt aware of the recent situation in Wisconsin.  If not, basically the state's governor, Scott Walker, and the republican state legislature have been attempting to strip all public (government) employee unions of their collective bargaining rights.  Collective bargaining is what makes a union what it is, so essentially, they're trying to destroy unions.

Originally, they tried to pass this as part of a state spending bill to help alleviate Wisconsin's budget deficit.  Several pay and benefit cuts are also included in the bill, which the unions have agreed to give.  They've even said they'll give more, they just won't give up their right to bargain.  With their right to collectively bargain as a union they could eventually raise pay and benefit levels when the state could afford it again, so they don't mind giving up the money, just not the right to get it back.  Can you blame them?

Monday, March 7, 2011

Update: Battlestar Galactica Online Chat Filter

I've had a bit of a yoyo with this game, but after taking a stroll over to their forums today, I found they finally listened to the hundreds of angry customers.  The chat filter system has been changed and I tested it out for a few messages earlier today.

Some of the lesser words, such as damn, no longer activate any sort of filter at all.  Something like shit however, will make your message show up as "***" in chat.  This is to combat one of their main arguments from the past, that simply replacing just the offending word still led to issues since everyone would know what it really was.  In that same vein, you can't turn the filter off.  I didn't get a chance to test it, but I would assume it all still applies to party, whisper, and guild chats as well.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Preview: DarkSpore, Maxis' New Sci-Fi Dungeon Crawler

I recently got my hands on a DarkSpore beta key and had a chance to take a look at this rather interesting new dungeon crawler.  The game does share some small relations to the spore series, but this is only readily apparent in the editing mode.  The game is primarily an Action RPG game, taking place on various planets throughout the galaxy.

Friday, February 25, 2011

World of Warcraft Patch 4.1 Hits the PTR

The first major content patch of Cataclysm hit the PTR last night, and that of course means new patch notes to go over.  There're several highlights worth noting, including:

  • ZA and ZG are coming back as Heroic 5 Mans with ilvl 353 loot.  You'll need to have an ilvl of 346 to queue and reskinned versions of the old mount drops will be available.
  • Several new mounts and pets along with achievements for 100 and 125 pets.
  • Removal of diminishing returns on the stuns from Warriors Charge and Intercept, that was added in patch 4.0.6
  • Removal of Ignite procs from DoT's in an attempt to fix ignite munching.  A bug which can increase damage under rare conditions, and decreases it the majority of the time.
  • Several existing spells are receiving new effects.
  • Spells will now cast or queue upon the key being pressed instead of when the key is lifted.  You will be able to revert to cast on key up in the options.
  • Twin Peaks is receiving some very odd (in my opinion) changes to GY spawning.  Attacking players respawn at their base, while defending and midfield players spawn in the middle.
  • "Work has begun on a new Looking for Guild system.  Further details will be provided when we are ready for feedback."
As always, you can find the full patch notes on

Also of note, datamining has found indication that the new legendary caster weapon, previously mentioned at BlizzCon, might be coming in 4.1, along with the raid it's attached to.
"Caverns of Time - Caster Legendary - Camera Bunny 00"
Camera bunnies are essentially used for the game to take over camera control, typically for cutscenes.   We already know that Caverns of Time - War of the Ancients will be a raid in the Cataclysm patch cycle, this being located in CoT means that the staff is likely tied to the War of the Ancients raid.  This doesn't necessarily mean that it's all coming in 4.1, it could just be preparation for a future patch, but we do know they want to continue the model of a few smaller raids, versus one long one, and Firelands has been the only confirmed raid so far for 4.1.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

And a Big Fuck You to... Battlestar Galactica Online

And a big fuck you returns for another round, officially our first recurring segment, congratulations!

As you may know, I recently wrote a fairly positive review of the new Battlestar Galactica MMO from Bigpoint.  While what I wrote still holds true and it is an enjoyable game, especially for a free to play, I recently had a run in with the games Chat filter which is so extreme, I must rescind my recommendation.

While talking with a friend of mine who I got to start playing, I had an odd occurence.  We're talking in whispers and all of a sudden I get a message saying I could no longer use chat "Reason: You has been banned." (Yes, it says "You has been banned")  The game gives no further detail as to what I had done wrong, but since it allowed me to chat again almost immediately, I figured it was similar to WoW's anti-spam feature.  Which essentially stops you from sending a msg if you send three or four in quick succession.  Since I was explaining various aspects of the game, and thus doing a lot of typing, that seemed like a good fit.  I later got another notice of ban near when I logged off, but again thought nothing of it.