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Posts posted by Fez

  1. 21 minutes ago, ThinkerX said:

    Given the stunning display of arrogance and complete incompetence demonstrated by republicans thus far...I could almost see it happening by accident - eight or ten R's voting present instead of for whoever, thus handing the victory to Jefferies. But, yes, still absurd...for now...

    If there was some incredible fuck-up in GOP vote counting and they end up having a Speaker vote when more Democrats are present than Republicans (which is possible if Jordan's latest idea of "endless back-to-back votes all weekend" happens), I have to think it'll only be a matter of hours for Republicans to get enough members back and hold a motion to vacate to kick Jefferies out.

    Although, it would be a hilarious moment. Unfortunately, I don't know enough about House rules to know if Democrats would be able to ram through any off-the-shelf bills they have during their short-lived majority. Though presumably Senate Republicans would filibuster any such bills simply on principle. 

  2. 8 minutes ago, Maithanet said:

    As crazy and dysfunctional as the Republican caucus is, it still feels very unlikely that Republicans are going to find more common ground with Democrats than with other Republicans.  I remain convinced that in the end, they will elect a speaker (or somehow empower someone without the title) via coming together as a party, rather than building a bridge with Democrats.

    The other option, which some former advisors to past GOP Speakers have been arguing, is that McHenry already has the power of a Speaker and just isn't using it yet. And that, so long as a majority doesn't vote to stop him, he could proceed with House business. That kind of passive allowance may be more palatable to Republicans. But it would also require the consent of Democrats unless less than 4 Republicans want to stop it (which is doubtful).

  3. 37 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

    Just turned on MSNBC and they're reporting the McHenry path is dead with Gaetz spiking it. Apparently another rep tried to strike him in some way.

    Clowns. All of them.


    It's not about Gaetz, it's about a split right down the middle of House GOP leadership (so called) about whether to go for it or not. And the Republicans blocking Jordan are not, so far at least, willing to go it on their own with Democrats.

  4. 24 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

    So… will Emmer be “Speaker”?

    2 minutes ago, A Horse Named Stranger said:

    Emmer, not McHenry?

    Sorry, meant McHenry. Got my "slightly less crazy, former McCarthy allies" mixed up.

    If this happens, his title changes from "Acting Speaker Pro Tem" to "Speaker Pro Tem". So he's still not really Speaker, but would presumably basically have all the powers until/unless there's a real Speaker.

    Also, it sounds like a lot of Jordan's allies are turning against him in the House GOP conference meeting going on over this, so who knows what might change today.

  5. 19 hours ago, Fez said:

    #4. Tom Emmer gets empowered while still being only Speaker Pro Tem, which almost certainly requires affirmative Dem votes and therefore is a different thing than #2. It also probably will be in short-term increments that require further votes every X days for the rest of the congress.

    Sounds like this is what's happening. Jordan has said he won't seek a 3rd Speaker vote, but will remain speaker-designee and reserve the right to call a vote in the future. And in the mean time he'll support the plan to remove 'Acting' from Emmer's title.

    There are a chunk of Republicans who oppose this, so Democratic votes will be required. 

  6. 2 hours ago, Maithanet said:

    If the Speaker deadlock continues, then eventually we'll get a government shutdown basically by default, because no further funding can be passed.  There is a segment of the Republican party that wants that shutdown, and probably aren't afraid to continue the leadership impasse in order to get it.  So there's a few possible avenues out of this mess that I see:

    1.  The "moderates" cave and elect someone that is acceptable and beholden to the far right.  Could be Jordan or someone else. 

    2.  The "moderates" stay unified and negotiate with Democrats on some concessions in exchange for electing a Republican that is acceptable to most Republicans, but not the far right.  This would presumably mean a bunch of Democrats voting Present rather than no.  Most likely this would be in exchange for some spending priorities in the upcoming budget fight. 

    3.  The far right caves and elects someone that the moderates can also support (possibly McCarthy).  This probably requires an agreement to give some power back to the speaker (raise the threshold to vacate to 5 or 10 votes maybe).  This would really only happen if the far right gets sufficiently worried about option #2.


    By far the most likely is #1.  This is exactly what "moderate" Fitzpatrick (from a Biden seat outside Philly) said when he agreed to endorse Jordan, that he was angry about "extremists" ousting McCarthy, but the Republicans need to get back to work.  But given how pissed off much of the Republican caucus is, it will take some time before the moderates are willing to just fold.  They are upset about the disproportionate power that the freedom caucus had under McCarthy, and if they go down this path, that will only get worse. 

    #4. Tom Emmer gets empowered while still being only Speaker Pro Tem, which almost certainly requires affirmative Dem votes and therefore is a different thing than #2. It also probably will be in short-term increments that require further votes every X days for the rest of the congress.

  7. On 10/13/2023 at 1:53 PM, Ser Rodrigo Belmonte II said:

    As someone who initially got into gaming with RTS titles like AoE and Rise of Nations, this is pretty sad to hear lol. I don’t think the genre is completely dead with sub genre games like the total war series still running strong but yeah it’s facing tough times. 

    battle.net used to be my favourite multiplayer community servers back in the 2000s, they had some fantastic modded games.Hated what blizzard did with it through the disastrous launch of Reforged. 

    They can still continue Warcraft 4 as an alternate universe to WoW canon.A man can hope….

    Most of the RTS space was taken over by MOBA games (DOTA, League of Legends, etc.). They are a continuation of the trends set by the hero-focused RTS games like Warcraft 3. There are still some indie RTS games that release now and then, but I think the biggest RTS game right now is probably actually AoE 2. It always retained some popularity, but got a big boost when the 2019 definitive edition came out; and has gotten 4 new expansions released since then. 

  8. 2 minutes ago, Maithanet said:

    Democrats providing thier votes to some Republican speaker in exchange for some concessions is at least possible, although still not likely.  It would allow that Speaker to not have to kowtow to the freedom caucus.  But it's always easier in theory than in practice.  Even the "moderate" Republicans have very little in common with Democrats.

    The problem is the only remaining potential Republicans left who could potentially do this all want to have many more years of political careers. There's no about-to-retire moderate left who could step in as a career capstone, like Fred Upton. 

  9. 3 hours ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

    I’m just curious on how this will affect the senate judiciary  

    Yeah, we'll have to see. Republicans had previously threatened to block Feinstein from stepping down from the committee and being replaced. But they didn't say what they would do if she died or retired and there was a new senator from CA. Maybe that would be a bridge too far for some of them.

    But theoretically they could still block a new appointment and the committee gets stuck for the rest of the session. And getting around that would require one of Manchin or Sinema to vote with the other 49 Democrats+Harris to change the rules. 

  10. 47 minutes ago, Arakasi said:

    It somewhat surprises me (but then it doesn’t) coming from someone who works at a big developer that Larian is getting multiple passes on things we’d get roasted for. If we released the exact same game I doubt it’s anywhere near as well received. That’s life I guess.

    I agree with the sentiment that Larian's been shielded by the fact that Act I is so polished. Which means that people get 30+ hours before they see any issues and 50+ hours (Act III) before things get really bad. So there were multiple weeks where all the discourse about the game was purely positive. And then, since players hit Act III at different times, there was never a critical mass of people all at once complaining about the problems. Also, many of those players were predisposed to give Larian every possible benefit of the doubt because they had enjoyed the game so much up until then.

    It's a very different experience from a game that has issues right from the start of playing it.

  11. 11 hours ago, Slurktan said:

    It hasn't been delisted on the PSN yet so don't be an idiot just because it happens to be a game you love.

    Cyberpunk 2077 wasn't delisted because of bugs. There's far buggier games out there on the PSN store. It was delisted because CDPR told consumers to contact Sony if they wanted a refund.

  12. 56 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

    What happens if Alabama flatly refuses to abide by the Supreme Court ruling?

    I think they will. To me, this was more that the Republicans in the state legislature didn't want to be the ones actually creating the district and then all get primaried as "RINOs" by people who don't understand that they literally did not have a choice. But I don't think they're at the point yet where they will refuse to passively comply with a court-created map.

  13. 8 hours ago, Caligula_K3 said:

    All right, I'm going ahead and getting an X Box Series S. And now, the big question: which of the humongous games that I've missed out on over the last six years should I start with? Baldur's Gate 3 isn't out yet, so that'll have to wait.

    Starfield? It's recent and included in Game Pass, so that's a plus.

    Cyberpunk? New expansion just came out and I hear it's a lot better than launch.

    Elden Ring? It's ELDEN RING, and probably the game I'm most excited about playing. On the other hand, Dark Souls games are stressful and should maybe wait for a vacation.

    Red Dead Redemption 2?

    Of your list, Elden Ring. It's amazing and way less stressful than most From games by nature of it's open world.

    I'd also strongly rec (if you haven't played them): NieR Automata, The Witcher 3 (just in case you haven't, it is 8 years old now though), the entire recent Hitman trilogy, and Yakuza: Like A Dragon (if you like turn-based games) or Yakuza 0 (if you like action bralwers).

  14. 8 hours ago, Werthead said:

    RPS has done it's reader-nominated Top 25 CRPGs ever list.

    I'd probably agree, although I'm pretty sure last year they made it a Top 100 but whatever. Also, technically, Mass Effect 2 is on here twice.

    1. Disco Elysium
    2. The Witcher III: Wild Hunt
    3. Planescape: Torment
    4. Baldur's Gate III
    5. Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn
    6. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
    7. Deus Ex
    8. Dragon Age: Origins
    9. Fallout: New Vegas
    10. The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind
    11. Divinity: Original Sin II
    12. Mass Effect 2
    13. Fallout
    14. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
    15. Elden Ring
    16. Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines
    17. Mass Effect: Legendary Edition
    18. Dark Souls
    19. Chrono Trigger
    20. Baldur's Gate
    21. Fallout 2
    22. Arcanum: Of Steelworks and Magick Obscura
    23. Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    24. Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous
    25. Final Fantasy VI

    Generally a strong list; though I'd bump up Pathfinder: WoTR a lot and probably push down BG3 at least a few spots. Also, I feel like Final Fantasy Tactics is a notable omission; maybe drop Mass Effect 2 since it already counts as part of the Legendary Edition (and bump that up a bunch).

  15. 5 hours ago, Tywin et al. said:

    Last I heard was if he was still trying to get to Miami they'd have to offer them something. But yeah, I wouldn't want him either with that line. There are some back ups though that are better options than Wilson. The one I really don't get that people are talking about is bringing in Cam. He's extra washed. 

    I'm not sure any of the back-ups actually available are any better than the basically retired veteran free agent QBs; Matt Ryan, Blake Bortles, Colt McCoy, Carson Wentz, etc. Probably better to get one of them for free rather than make a trade.

    All ugly options, but the Jets legit need to sign someone. Even if they think Wilson is actually the best available option right now, they at least need some sort of back-up for him. Last night, if he went down (and he did look a little concussed one play), Randall Cobb was the available QB3.

    Unless any of the actually good back-ups are available. But I imagine any team would demand a (relative) king's ransom for them, knowing how desperate the Jets are.

  16. 38 minutes ago, horangi said:

    OK thats quite an endorsement- I was put off a bit from Kingmaker when I kept running into no win situations.  Does WotR provide a bit more balance or is reloading 'the way'?

    Depends which situations you mean. The crusade system, which is the replacement of the kingdom system, is much easier; almost impossible to lose if you read up a bit on how it works. And you can fully automate it if you want (though you do miss some cool scenes if you do that; also it locks out 2 of the evil mythic paths, which require certain crusade buildings to be manually constructed).

    For the regular gameplay though, it depends. There are certain fights for instance that are a breeze if you have a certain buff already up (e.g., fire resistance) but very hard otherwise; so you might run into a few reload situations like that. Overall though, I think it is more balanced, with a more smoothed out difficulty compared to Kingmaker. And there are some QoL changes to help out, built into the mythic powers system. Like by mid-Act II you can have your main buff character's buffs that last over 5 minutes last for 24 hours instead, so you can just cast all of them right after a rest instead of trying to guess which fight it makes sense to use them for.

    Overall, there's still that heavy, heavy "crunch" that the Pathfinder 1e system has, so it really depends on how you feel about that. I adore it, but I get the frustrations around 'trap' builds and the like. If you can at least tolerate it, the game has a really compelling narrative; with way larger, and more meaningful, choices than you usually see in an RPG.

  17. I first installed Steam in 2010, but didn't start to seriously use it until 2014. I had been a console gamer mostly, with a handful of physical PC games plus WoW. But I didn't really have the money at the time to upgrade to the PS4/Xbox One era; and also I'd been a 360 guy and really didn't like the Xbox One (but didn't want to switch the the PS4 eco-system either). 

    I think I may have gotten a couple free games in 2010/2011, but my first steam purchase was Fallout 2 for $4.99 in July 2012. I had 3 more purchases in the next 25 months. And then floodgates opened in August 2014, beginning with Divinity: Original Sin 1. 

    I now have 5,404 hours (which is actually lower than I'd have guessed, but I guess I do still play a fair amount on PC outside of Steam) spread across 451 games, which is eerily similar to Wert's numbers.  

    My top 15 most played are:

    1. Pathfinder: WotR- 1,013 hours (I have a problem, I know)

    2. Pathfinder: Kingmaker- 309 hours

    3. Stellaris- 255 hours

    4. Divinity: Original Sin 2- 232 hours

    5. Secret World Legends- 205 hours

    6. Europa Universalis IV- 187 hours

    7. Civilization V- 182 hours

    8. Troubleshooter: Abandoned Children- 166 hours

    9. Baldur's Gate 3- 149 hours

    10. Elden Ring- 139 hours

    11. The Witcher 3- 133 hours

    12. Cyberpunk 2077- 129 hours

    13. Mass Effect Legendary Edition- 115 hours

    14. Hades- 112 hours

    15. Pillars of Eternity- 93 hours


    It's interesting to me how top-heavy the list is; and also just how big the COVID effect has been on my gaming habits. Most of these are games I've played in the past 3+ years. I think I am gaming more than before, but also gaming on more steam than before. I certainly use PC Gamepass still, but my days of using other launchers seem to basically be over now.

  18. 31 minutes ago, Ser Rodrigo Belmonte II said:

    Well one vote of confidence will be if they get Grey DeLisle back to voice a Malkavian :P she was so good as Jeanette. Yeah I’m willing to wait for it to come out and let the reviews and user experiences help me decide whether to get it,rather than on day one.I just hope it comes out next year now. It’s been in development since 2015 ffs.Paradox has done a terrible job of managing this franchise. The original writer had said that he had done his work on the story and the firing came as a nasty surprise. 

    Hardsuit Labs fired a lot of people in the lead-up to Paradox yanking the game away from them. There's still never been any clarity on exactly what was going down, but it seems like the state of the game must've been awful.

    Whatever it was, considering how long The Chinese Room will have had the game by the time it comes out, and the fact that the plot appears to be entirely different, it seems likely that they basically scrapped everything and restarted from scratch. The optimistic take is that the game we get is fine and everything has been fine the past few years and the problems were isolated to Hardsuit Labs; with Paradox just being too hands off. But who knows?

  19. 1 hour ago, Ser Rodrigo Belmonte II said:

    Unfortunately I read that the original writer for the first one has been fired and this studio has also undergone mass layoffs, so not looking very positive right now. Also the trailer only shows some fairly mundane combat and they’re apparently reworking the entire story from scratch where you’re an elder instead of a thin blood….which is just baffling. Sigh….this franchise could have soo much potential, VTMB was possibly the most atmospheric game I’ve ever played.

    I believe the original studio of the new game, Hardsuit Labs, has undergone massive layoffs since the game was taken from them. But the new studio who put out this trailer, The Chinese Room, has had a huge hiring spree to staff up. (They did have their own mass layoffs back in 2017, but that was a separate issue that happened before they got the game).

    Also, The Chinese Room has only done story-games before ("walking sims") so there's a good chance they put out a combat-driven trailer because they figured that's where the most skepticism would be.

    And, yeah, at one point, while Hardsuit Labs still had the game, Brian Mitsoda was fired. He wasn't the only writer for the first game, but certainly was very important. Although, the fact that the first studio fired him and the replacement studio ignored all his work suggests that maybe there were fundamental problems with whatever he had come up with. Certainly, I remember a lot of fans being disappointed with the reveal of the thinblood plothook.

    The development of this game has been incredibly snakebitten and there's every reason for skepticism. Still, I'm willing to wait and see what the new devs have done before writing it off entirely. 

  20. 1 hour ago, Arakasi said:

    What Fez was getting is that in PF1 while there is a bunch of broken stuff there is also like a bazillion different ways to get it. So there is lots of ways to get very strong builds and the toolbox is so big there is a lot of flexibility and creativity in how you throw it together. Ofc you can just go more vanilla and that works fine depending on the class. (It’s not like 5e doesn’t have sucky classes like Ranger or druid or monk either) 

    Yeah, exactly. And also, because all of the broken things can be great fun there's no need to try to find the exact perfect, optimized build. I'm not even sure if there is one (though I assume it involves vivisectionist levels somehow).

    The weak character building aspect of 5e is the one big complaint I have about BG3. Some of the best fun I had in the Owlcat pathfinder games was simply figuring out what I wanted to do on the level-up screens. 

  21. 5 hours ago, Arakasi said:

    That’s been a problem with all forms of D&D. Give someone a hammer and everything looks like a nail. There have been attempts to push more versatility in options but they consistently fail to players desires to optimize the one best thing.

    It's just too easy to optimize in 5e though. I don't seek out perfect optimization in Pathfinder 1e because there's no need and because there's so many ways to do it. But in 5e, it's so obvious usually.

  22. I got back in my new playthrough to where I was in Act II at the last light inn. And, despite 2 patches (one of which seemed to claim to fix this), I'm having the exact same issue as before: In the initial conversation with Jaheria I pass a DC 21 CHA check to hide the existence of the artifact; but then in the follow-up conversation she talks all about how the artifact will protect.

    I don't usually get this hung up on relatively small stuff, but this completely breaks my immersion in the game and really puts me off playing any further. If my dialog choices are ignored this easily, what's the point of any of it?

  23. 2 hours ago, Raja said:

    76 was rightfully panned by a lot of critics given the dubious market practices by Bethesda and also the terrible state the game was released in; approaching the next release with skepticism makes perfect sense to me and there's no 'bias' in that.

    Though I guess I understand Bethesda staff being miffed about Skill Up coming out with that review - but I think the proof is really in Bethesda's response to Eurogame - as soon as Eurogamer made it public that

    1. They did not receive review codes

    2.  That is unprecedented for Eurogamer and hasn't happened to them in a long time and how that's bad for transparency & reviewing of games

    Once that article was made public, Bethesda released a review code in 2 hours for Eurogamer, which tells me it's just not great behaviour from bethesda and once the optics didn't look great they decided to release the code to them immediately

    ( It's also not just these two, there are quite a few other outlets that haven't received codes)

    Fallout 76 is hot garbage, especially in it's release state. But "skepticism" is not the same "actively hostile" when thinking about a potential future game.

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