This is the second instance in the Deponia series. It brings back the “Deponia” experience playing Rufus again, the notorious, infantile boaster. And you meet the characters of the first episode again, like Goal.
Though, I have to admit, that this game feels like the developers wanted to spin the story further of Rufus been in love with Goal, fighting his rival Cletus, getting to Elysium and saving the planet… but run out of ideas. The riddles are abstruse (e.g. the music in the dark alley) and sometimes just weird (e.g. the baby dolphins). Quite often you (at least me) have to resort to trial and error. Hints are super subtle.
The main character, Rufus, is a charm, and the humor is there. But, uhm, I think the one word which sums it all up is “awkward”.
A big minus for the riddles but still a big plus for the setting and the protagonist: Rufus at Deponia.
Finished Pillars of Eternity. All played on Kubuntu Linux.
Pillars of Eternity is are a very nice remembrance of one of the golden ages of RPG: it’s a Baldur’s Gate arrived in the modern days.
You play a “Watcher”: someone who is capable to look into one soul and see memories of this particular person. This knack let you know if someone is telling the truth or lies to you. On a new world called Eora, you strife the landscape of Drywood. Here chances are, that babies are “Halloborn”, without a soul. The locals are desperate and taken quite fanatic actions, e.g. killing advocates of the so-called animancer. You are to investigate this phenomenon and as it turns out will confront the history of this place, the gods, and a lot of opponents in the path.
The whole story is narrated textual. There is a ton to read and shows how much the developers of the game lay their heart in it. The landscape is a beautiful design and the combat is fun and one major plus-point of the game.
Though the story got confusing from time to time and characters are seldom rememberable. Also, I can’t help to repeat “less is often more”. There are tons of buffs and spells with little variance as it seems to me. There are three things, which annoyed me most: the artificial restriction to only camp a limited number of times by having a maximum of 4 “campfire supplies” (for whatever this is) is stupid (if I consumed more, I have to return to some settlement to buy new one. What a waste of time!), the loading takes “ages”, and the difficulties of dragons. For the last, I got my party up to level 16 and still could not face the Adra dragon or the alpine dragon. Everyone else was a piece of cake. So I let all dragons (but the Skydragon).
And beside some bugs (once I had a full crash) the game runs smoothly on my Kubuntu Linux.
A feast for friends of old RPG with some minor quirks.
Finished Outlast and its DLC Whistleblower. Phuuu! Played fully on Linux.
Outlast is a nice first-person survival horror game. You are an investigator researching the rumors about the Mount Massive Asylum. You arrive with your car, park the car just at the gate and from this point on you are on your feet, walking around the manor. No one is seen, doors shut tight. Then you find an opened window and you crawl into the building… starting the horror.
Pretty soon you find remnants of brutal massacres. Entrails, heads, limbs, and blood – gallons of blood – everywhere. This is the “good” old school of American horror: gore, gore, GORE! There is no time for a subtle inkling of some ‘thing’ which causes you goosebumps. Mhm, nope. It’s pretty expressive, direct. Brutal. And as if it isn’t enough, the DLC masters to even add to this already very high level of gore. Whistleblower introduces yet two other lunatics with a very unhealthy sense of body fixation. Along with several pretty hefty cutscenes.
And, oh – btw – the graphics are excellent. Light, shadow, smoke, all are very good placed. Some light bulbs are blinking, some lights are shaking. More than once you need your camera with some night vision capabilities to view your path in more or less absolute darkness. These all add to the atmosphere.
From time to time you find documents revealing what has happened to the asylum. The story which started off been rather some sort of cliche turns out to be quite interesting.
Then the gameplay: rather soon you discover to be not the only survivor in this pretty large building. Some inmates are afraid of you, some ignore you, and some … try to kill you. Namely, one big super strong guy, Chris Walker, is very keen and eager to get a “grip” on you. Pretty explicit when he succeeds…
Sadly you are not able to interact with the environment in any other manner than open doors, pick up batteries, jump over obstacles or crouch under them, pressing some buttons, moving some boards and pickup up keys to unlock doors. There is no inventory. You may not combine anything on your way through the manor. No nothing you can use as a weapon to defend yourself. Oh, and no health bar too: run for your life! … or hide under beds or in lockers and pray not to be discovered.
This is also the critic on the game: as a player, you have virtually no agency. There is always exactly one single way the developer wanted you to go. Sometimes faster under stress as been chased to death, sometimes with some leisure. However, you do not have any real choice. As such, Outlast is likely more a horror “movie” than a horror “game”. There is nothing for the player to do as to exactly do what the developers wanted to. Point. No (or at least a very, very limited) interaction with the environment. You can’t even turn the lights on (or off, if you really wanted to be it even darker than in the first place).
If you are interested in good stories, riddles, interesting places look elsewhere. If you are into the most extreme American teenager horror money can get you: welcome.
Still, the enacting, the presentation of the game is really engaging.
Finished Warhammer Quest. Completely played on Linux via Steam.
Warhammer Quest is the PC version of the famous Warhammer Quest Tabletop game. You have a party of up to four warriors including a warrior, a dwarf, an elf and a mage. You delve into dungeons of various sort to either kill a special mean boss enemy or grab a precious item from the very depth of the labyrinth. All these “quests” are embedded into cleansing three rural regions of the Warhammer universe realm of Goblins, Orcs and Skaven. On some quests you come along some Vampires and Undead which provide a some more challenging task since Vampire Lords are very powerful and while wielding some magic spells they can also deal a very serious amount of damage in melee. Between the dungeons you travel from village to village where you can sell your loot, buy new equipment and visit the training grounds to achieve new levels and therefore skills for your character. As such Warhammer Quest presents itself as a typical Hack & Slay Dungeon crawler viewed from atop when navigating your party through the dungeons.
It is fun. It is entertaining.
But huge epic quests are not found in this game. The dungeon runner part of the game is good looking and plays well. Tactics is seldom an obstacle: leave your mage and the archer (elf) behind and rush in with a berserk and the dwarf. Usually this is solves any problem. On higher levels micromanagement of potions and spell points (healing) of your staff is a bit demanding but this game is not a real hard problem to get around. Graphics and sound are nice done and appropriate.
In a village the menu dealing with inventory and merchants goods could be solved a bit better. Buying and equip you fighters could have been done less awkward, though the way it is done may be better suitable for Tablets and/or XBox or Playstation. Not a real nuisance, but leaves you easily with an idea that it could be done slightly better than it has been done.
The real fun stops, when you characters reached the level limit. And that’s quite too early in the game. After this the game gets highly repetitive. You get the best equipment fast, learned all spells and even the toughest opponent does not bear any really real threat to your party. So about 1/3 of the game you simply do the same over and over again.
But as stated above: it still provides you with fun sweeping through a dungeon.
I never played the original tabletop but I assume that this game strictly obeys to the rules found there and serves as a nice game for up to 4 players each one controlling his own character. This is different to a single PC player game. Here you lack the (unknown) decisions of your co-players but have full control. E.g. swapping one heal potion from one character to the next is not a matter of discussion and arguing among the players but rather a sole act within one, two mouse-clicks. Attacking the mean boss behind with the archer or the nearly dead minion in front of the archer so that the heavy berserk can right walk up to the dangerous mage nearby is not a group act, it’s one single player choice. So this is a different environment and targeted audience to entertain. This is fun on a tabletop where social group interaction of the players contribute to the fun. On a single player PC game this is inherently lost.
So, Warhammer Quest succeeds in bringing the original tabletop game to the PC and creates fun. Could it have been done better? Yes, of course. But only if you bend the core rules of the original and this would then render another game, not entitled to “Warhammer Quest”.
Despite some claims I read elsewhere I never had a crash or some technical difficulties encountered. The game runs smoothly.
Yesterday I found myself in the mood to play a game again. So I turned up my Windows 7 partition and tried to play Bioshock. But: there was no in-game sound. After the very first cut-scenes (the airplane crash) you float in the middle of burning water but mute. No sound, no beep.
So I googled around to fix that issue and discovered there is a ton of people suffering from the same problem. I followed several recommendations but nothing changed. There is even a YouTube video for the very dumb with several tips, but none (none!) enabled the sound. It took me about 1 hour along with several reboots and changing Windows 7 core components. Finally I gave up, frustrated. And I’m not alone with that. It seems that Bioshock under Windows 7 (or Vista) is a No-Go.
Today I tried the same game under Linux and within 5 minutes going for the mouse fix I had it up and running! With full sound enabled!
I can’t believe that applications made for Windows do not run under Windows but under a Windows Emulation on Linux. This is crazy. One should expect that applications should run better or at least with equal performance on both operating systems. But having Linux being superior to Windows on Windows own playground … is this yet another sign of dying M$ technology?
So, everyone wanting to play Bioshock but is suffering from the sound problem: get yourself a Linux installment! I guess any will do. Bioshock does run on your machine – but not under this operating system.
So I wanted to backup my crypt file holding all my valuable files. This crypt file has 20GB. I tried to copy this file at once on our server. No luck.
Tried within KDE (4.9.0), no luck. Tried in bash with
$ cp crypt-file smb/server/home
(I use to mount Samba shares in ~/smb/SERVER/SHARE) No luck.
Tried with scp: no luck.
The effect: at a certain point of time the transmission starts to either abort or – in the case of scp – is stalled. That is when I got around 11GB on the server. So scp got stalled and I tried it with the -l option:
$ scp -l 8192 crypt-file user@server:
But this takes an eternity for 20GB! And there is no guarantee of success either. No luck.
Next, I dropped the TCP SACK ability, which occasionally causes scp to get stalled:
and encrypted there by using gpg the tarball of credentials holding passwords.
So rsync is the salvation. But then it is put there in plain on the server. I admit: this *has* some advantages but the drawback is: that you have to go and find all your precious files which ought to be protected and find yet another way to encrypt them. With the help of $ gpg -e FILE this is ok but cumbersome.
… simply doesn’t work at all. Investigated to much time for this (some hours) without any results but this: it’s totally broken. What a pity. OTOH the phpBB3 devs do not support multiboard on VirtualHost in the first at all. So the Debian people tried hard but failed to find a convenient way to do this.
What a pity.
To have a multiboard running on the machine it is best to kick the update possibilities offered by apt (*sigh*) and go for the plain, manually install into the VirtualHost’s folders. Each with an unique phpBB3 installment. Yes, this works, but leaves the user with the nightmare in upgrading each board in separate, which is very, very cumbersome.
I hope the phpBB3 devs some day realize that multiboard and/or VirtualHost support is needed right out-of-the-box.