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Posts posted by Fez

  1. 26 minutes ago, Whiskeyjack said:

    I feel like you maybe didn't get deep enough into Act 3?  The coronation at Wyrm's Rock gives you some direction, and if you progress through the Lower City its pretty clear which areas are connected to which characters.  There is definitely a lot of side content too, so maybe you got bogged down with that.  But there's also a strong narrative and quest (or multiple quests) for each companion, with most of them also linked to the main story.

    Maybe. But the issue is:


    I'm playing as the Dark Urge and I felt it made sense to side with Gortash at Wyrm's Rock (also, I have Minthara; which means no Karlach or Wyll connections to anything; so I don't care about Ravengard for instance). And I happen to know, despite not reaching that point, that Gortash never betrays you (at least if you're the Urge, not sure about for other PCs) and I don't feel like it would make sense to betray Gortash. Which means a lot of the Act 3 content kinda just feels "there" without good reasons for me to do it.


  2. 42 minutes ago, IlyaP said:

    I've heard Larian fixed a lot in DOS2, especially the latter half. How much got tweaked in the game between release and the current edition?

    A lot. They substantially reworked the narrative of Act IV, with new quests, changes in flow between existing quests (to better tie events together), and more companion reactivity to events. Apparently over 150,000 words of text were changed and 130,000 new words were recorded by the VAs per https://www.neoseeker.com/divinity-original-sin-ii/guides/Definitive_Edition_Differences

    They also made a bunch of balancing and leveling changes throughout the game.

  3. 1 hour ago, Heartofice said:

    Can't talk about it in terms of bugs.. but it's.. a bit dull. I know they have talked about the storytelling for Act 3 in interviews, but it really does just throw you back to square one a bit and the momentum totally dies. I still haven't finished the game. 

    Yeah, honestly as much as I love the game overall, Act 3 completely kills my interest in the game. The last time I played, I managed to plough through Rivington but once I hit the lower city I just had no desire to keep going (it also didn't help that Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth just released and is incredible). It's actually too open-ended, and too disconnected from everything you've been doing up to that point. Act I is open-ended, but it's also very tight in that everything you do relates to learning about your tadpole and possible options for getting rid of it. Act II is extremely focused. And then Act III is open-ended again, and not really in service of anything specific. I hope a director's cut eventually changes it as much act IV of Divinity Original Sin 2 got changed.

  4. 14 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

    We know for 100% certain that a candidate can win the White House with a lower NPV than the losing candidate. It's just that this only seems to be achieved by Republicans because of structural advantages in the EC. However it would still be theoretically possible for a Democrat to pull it off.

    There was a real chance of it happening in 2004. Kerry lost the national popular vote by 2.5%, but only lost Ohio (my how things change) by 2.1%. And if he won Ohio he'd have won the election.

    Then, in both 2008 and 2012 Obama won the tipping point state (Colorado, in both cases) by more than his national popular vote margin. In 2008 he could've lost the national vote by up to 1.7% and still won the election, and in 2012 by up to 1.5%

    Up until 2016, it was more often Republicans talking about abolishing the electoral college to erase the assumed Democratic edge there. Although it was only Democratic states actually passing the national popular vote compact to do so.

    In general, the electoral edge has bounced back and forth between the parties. And the current Republican edge isn't even the worst it's been, it's just that elections used to more frequently be blowouts so it masked the issue. 

  5. I'll also chime in to note that Biden is certainly old enough to remember the 1968 election. LBJ was actually eligible to run for another term, decided not to, and the Democratic party split into several major factions immediately. The result was a chaotic Democratic convention and Nixon beat Humphries in an election that was actually close in the popular vote but was an electoral blowout.

    The conventional wisdom is that LBJ was so unpopular from the Vietnam war that he would've gotten blown out in the election and so he decided not to run to spare himself the embarrassment and to hopefully improve Democrats' chances that year. However, the limited polling at the time suggests that LBJ actually was in a good position to win and there's a variety of theories as to why he ended up not running.

    I think Biden thinks he can win and he doesn't want to be another LBJ.

  6. 15 hours ago, Tywin et al. said:

    Logically speaking MAGA should already be a dead end. That's a large part of the problem. General failure in last few elections hasn't caused the right to move back to a more normal position. 

    I disagree. The problem is that Republicans are still in an excellent position to takeover, and hold significant amounts of power as is; especially at the state level. I do think this is despite MAGA, not because of it. But the harms of MAGA to their political aims hasn't been enough to make them risk pissing off their base yet.

    The only way I see MAGA starting to break is if Biden wins re-election AND the 2026 midterm resembles the 2022 midterm (especially if Democrats have the senate after 2026, and there are a few decent pick-up opportunities there). I think that, and pretty much only that, would lead to a 2028 Republican primary where MAGA starts getting ditched.

    And the problem is, that's a really tall order. Even if Biden wins, I think there's a very strong chance that 2026 is a more regular midterm incumbent bloodbath.

  7. 13 hours ago, kissdbyfire said:

    Exactly! It's bonkers. I mean, just those... 15? votes to get the gavel and even then he only manages b/c he agrees w/ basically everything the maga nuts want, and he didn't see it coming? Not very smart, is he? Perhaps he can get a gig at MaL filling golden jars full of red & pink starbursts. What a  pathetic excuse of a human being. 

    It was always an open secret in DC that most of his colleagues (and most reporters) think McCarthy isn't that bright. Entirely independent of ideological leanings, he just pretty dumb. And it shows. 

    Here's an Op-Ed from Politico in the summer of 2022, making the case about the reporters knowing it but it being taboo to directly say: https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2022/06/03/kevin-mccarthy-washington-media-taboo-intelligence-00036894



    Is Kevin McCarthy a great big dummy?

    That’s not a rhetorical question. Read between the lines of some of the coverage during McCarthy’s 15 years in Congress and you start to suspect that many folks who pay close attention to our likely next House Speaker don’t think he’s the sharpest tool in the shed.

    The hints slip in, often as asides: McCarthy is “a golden retriever of a man,” “not known for being a policy wonk,” “not known for his immersion in policy details,” “not known to have a mind for policy,” “a coastal extrovert of ambiguous ideological portfolio who … would far rather talk about personalities than the tax code” and “not necessarily a policy wonk or political mastermind like his predecessors in House leadership.” His elevation would mean that “even though the fractured House Republican caucus may benefit from McCarthy’s networking abilities, others may have to step up to help filter out the details of policy quagmires to come.” No wonder “many believe he lacks the political and tactical gravitas to be a force” and “there are those who privately question his policy chops and intellectual abilities.”

    It’s not hard to conclude that the authors of these lines may be trying to tell us something.

    Granted anonymity, some journalists do just that. “He’s a lightweight,” says one veteran political journalist who has covered McCarthy.

    “I would never consider him to be smart,” says a TV figure who has interviewed him several times.

    “In a strange way that is hard to explain, he’s gotten more stupid the longer he’s here,” opines a longtime Capitol Hill reporter who has watched McCarthy since his early days of palling around with the wonkier likes of Paul Ryan and Eric Cantor.


  8. 12 hours ago, Relic said:

    Weird logic. I'd rather discuss things that are rooted in reality instead of random conspiracy theory xyz, especially when it applies to the deeply sensitive topic being discussed. 

    By the way, did you know that some people claim humanity has never left Earths gravity well, and that all of space exploration is fiction? Isn't that interesting? 

    If it's false, it's noteworthy that the group felt the need to make the accusation. Just like liberals share the weird, false accusations that Trump, MTG, Boebert, et al make all the time.

    And if it's true, it's obviously a big deal in it's own right.

    Either way, it garnered enough attention that the media orgs felt the need that they had to respond. https://www.washingtonpost.com/style/media/2023/11/09/cnn-ap-photographer-hamas/



    CNN, the Associated Press, Reuters and the New York Times, which all published photographs by the freelancers, denied any advance warning of the attack.

    But CNN and the AP chose to cut ties with Hassan Eslaiah, one of the freelancers, though they did not specify why. Eslaiah got extra emphasis in the HonestReporting story, which resurfaced a several-years-old photo of him posing with Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar.



  9. 12 hours ago, Relic said:

    Honestly, what's the point of sharing this shit? Either wait until you know it's true, or share some space lazer news, too.

    What's the point of posting anything? Just fodder for thought/discussion.

    And I sure haven't seen such complaints about not fully vetted Palestinian claims.

  10. 7 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:


    It's "the system" in a broad context in the sense that there is still a concept of 2 big parties to either side of the centre that are not supposed to form a govt together, unless for some emergency reason people think it's necessary to have a special thing called a government of national unity. If Likud and Labour had historically formed govts together rather than almost always seeing to be the one big party that cobbled together majorities by working with parties or greater or lesser extremity things might look a bit different. In the US context PR would lead to the splintering of the two parties, but they would probably remain the two biggest parties in congress. But the unwritten rule would be that you would never see R+D as a bloc forming the majority. R will always be expected to go with parties to the right or R and centre parties largely made up of former Rs. D's would likewise be expected to only work with parties to the left and centre parties of former Ds.

    That's a rather odd way to describe Israel, considering that there were 10 parties that got seats in the latest election; 5 of them with at least 10 seats and Likud itself only got 32 of the 120 available (and Labor got 4). Things have gotten more polarized since 2019, but Israel historically has been well-known for having a huge number of parties that make it into the Knesset. And a lot of them don't just fall onto a left-right spectrum; e.g., there's the party for Ashkenazi Haredi, the party for Sephardic Haredi, the party for Russian-speaking Jews.

    Also, 4 Prime Ministers since 2001 haven't been from Likud (or Labor), and not just the two briefly last year. From 2003 to 2009, Kadima was the dominant party in government; swapping out Likud and Labor (among other parties) as junior partners as needed.

    Further, Labor and Likud have formed a government together that wasn't a "national emergency" government. After the 1984 election the math was basically impossible to make a government that didn't involve both parties, and they didn't hate each other as much back then, so they made a government.

    Lastly, the most recent Likud government (pre 10/7) was the first time there was such an ideologically cohesive government. E.g, Labor governments regularly included the religious conservative parties, and Likud governments used to regularly include single-issue liberal and moderate parties.

  11. 44 minutes ago, maarsen said:

    You do know that Israel has this type of system leading to their inability to deal with issues of national importance without including the loony bin contigent in the decision making? 


    29 minutes ago, kissdbyfire said:

    Is it the system in Israel? I mean, I think it’s messy as hell but I didn’t think it was Israel’s system. 

    It's not. Israel uses a nationwide party closed list proportional representative system with a 3.25% electoral threshold. It's like what Spain uses for it's lower chamber, only the entire country is one giant district.

  12. There's a hell of claim out there today, albeit not from an unbiased source, claiming that Gaza-based photojournalists employed by the AP and Reuters were actually embedded among the Hamas terrorists on 10/7. If true, it means that journalists (and perhaps, although not likely, their employing news agencies) knew of the attack in advance and didn't alert anyone. Or, alternatively, the "journalists" are actually members of Hamas. Either way, it would call into question the accuracy of quite a bit of reporting coming out from the ground in Gaza.


  13. As great as the outcome of last night was overall, there are still some warning signs for Democrats:

    First of all, in Virginia Republicans won every senate district that was less than Biden+8 in 2020. In a lot of ways last night was actually pretty similar to 2021, it's just that the lines favored Democrats a bit. And yes, they won back the state house, but the district lines there were different than in 2021; overall voter preference seems pretty similar to what it had been.

    And secondly, New York Democrats continued to lose ground in and around NYC. When abortion isn't on the ballot (and, in fairness, the Long Island suburbs of NYC are probably the one place left in the country where there are still a large number of pro-choice Republicans— including some of the local candidates who won last night) things can get bad quick. If Republicans are in some way able to make the economy the main focus of 2024, it'll spell big trouble.

  14. 21 minutes ago, Phylum of Alexandria said:

    About to go out and vote in VA's elections. Really hoping we can quash any chance of abortion regulation, and send fucking Youngkin the message that his 2021 win was not any type of mandate for his radical personal beliefs.

    Fingers crossed!

    It's just a shame that I'm in such a blue part of NoVA that my vote basically doesn't matter since there's no statewide offices up. We do have a kinda competitive county board vote, but I think my state delegate and senator are running unopposed. Still gonna go vote in a couple hours though of course.

  15. 6 minutes ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

    Literally every single Jewish person can turn out to vote out for trump in response to Biden actually getting tough on Israel  and he’d win them all

    They’re solidly blue and the loss would be eclipsed by the Arab Americans and young people who’d appreciate the change


    Jews are 3.34% of the population in Pennsylvania (Biden won by 1.16%); 2.46% of Nevada (Biden won by 2.39%); 1.49% of Arizona (Biden won by 0.31%); and 1.20% of Georgia (Biden won by 0.24%).

    Meanwhile, Arab Americans' population is greater than Biden's 2020 margin only in Arizona (0.46%) and Georgia (0.26%), both of which are smaller than the Jewish population. From a purely political perspective, Biden's making the smart play.

  16. And speaking of the problems of PC gaming, I think I've encountered one. My secondary SSD (which is 6 years old) appears to have suddenly and completely died overnight. It's no longer recognized by my PC at all, not showing up in device manager, disk management, or BIOS. Question for those more knowledge than me:

    If I've confirmed that the motherboard port is still good, the SATA cable is still good, and the power supply connector is still good (I was able to test all them with a third drive), is there any other issue I could be facing besides it being that the SSD has died? 

  17. Speaking of Gamepass, I just played a neat little game on it called Jusant. It's the first game I've played that made climbing an actual engaging activity (which is good, because it's the only real mechanism in the game). It took about 5 hours, and was generally a pleasant, neat experience throughout. It's not really that difficult, and it's impossible to die (you can have to re-do short bits of climbing but that's the only challenge you can face). So in some senses it's basically a walking simulator with a bit more going on. Not sure if it'd be worth the $25 (I think) that it's on Steam, but definitely the kind of game that makes gamepass shine.

  18. 3 hours ago, Bironic said:

    Can someone explain to me why 31 democrats sided with the majority of republicans no to expel George Santos?



    There's only been 5 members of the House expelled in US history; 3 who joined the Confederates in the Civil War and 2 who were convicted of felonies. I can see the argument that the standard for expulsion should remain as high as it has been; and Santos hasn't been convicted of anything yet.

  19. Johnson seems likely to win on the first vote on the floor. All the Republicans either like him or are too exhausted to keep going. Bacon, one of the most moderate members left, just voted for him. And Buck, who is OG crazy conservative but also anti-MAGA and opposed Jordan because of his 2020 denialism, has said he'll vote for Johnson.

    It seems likely Johnson will happily allow a shutdown to happen next month, and then it'll be a question of if he ever blinks (and therefore goes the way of McCarthy) or if the moderates eventually revolt again. The flashpoint may be even sooner, over the Ukraine/Israel aid package that the Senate will pass.

  20. 13 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:


    We'll see. This man has an amazing track recorded of failing upwards despite the odds. My concern is he could get through just because Republicans need to pick someone at this point and they're running out of options. 

    He might get through on fatigue alone at this point. Although apparently in the first internal roll call there were 26 Republicans who said they wouldn't vote for him on the floor. That's better than Jordan, who had 55 no's in his first internal roll call. But these 26 are all hardcore MAGAs, and much more likely to be steadfast no matter what. 

    Interestingly, some of the fringe are already okay with Emmer though. Gaetz, Boebert, and a few others have said they'll support him.


  21. 26 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

    Also Tom Emmer is now the nominee for Speaker. You've got to be fucking kidding me. The dude is a weasel talk show host who is dumb as hell. That fucking coward was afraid of teenage college kids in his mid 40's, but he's tough because he played hockey. GTFO with this piece of shit. 

    And yet, of the 9 Republicans who were running, he is by far the most palatable. Which just goes again to show how far we've fallen.

    I don't see how he gets to 217 though. He seems like he'll have the exact same problems Scalise had, with the added challenge of Trump explicitly saying he didn't want him as Speaker.

  22. 2 hours ago, Caligula_K3 said:

    I think this is what I worry about too. I haven't bought it yet (because Starfield), but I'm sure I will at some point. Streams I've watched have made the game seem really fun and funny to experience, but there has been next to no platforming challenge. I was watching early levels, but still - without some challenge even in the early levels, I'm not sure I could replay Super Mario World every couple of years.

    There is no challenge (so far) in completing the levels or in getting all the bonus wonder seeds. But I think there is a bit of challenge, in some levels, for anyone trying to 100% the game. Some of the levels so far have had some decently hard to get 10-purple coins; albeit usually because they're hidden in some way rather than being mechanically challenging to reach. And there's one level in W1 with p-switches and blue coins that I haven't been able to get all the blue coins yet and so have no idea what the secret there is, but it's been tough (and is the only level I've seen so far with blue coins).

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