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Everything posted by 213374U

  1. It's a big problem with Stellaris specifically because the game has introduced several fundamental design changes over the years. The phasing out of the different FTL modes in favor of starlanes for everyone, the move from tiles to pops, etc. Though that's also the fault of Steam's mandatory patching feature/policy to a significant degree. It's just not possible to play the game you bought originally unless you kept a pirated version or something. Steam and Paradox, working hand in hand to make your experience worse since 2014.
  2. Heh. And that's considering that I'm playing with a mod that basically does away with item leveling. A gun is a gun is a gun, and that snazzy tank top doesn't provide any armor. So I have zero incentive to go fishing for loot. Can't help it though. Some of the side content is pretty good too. It's a 'problem' with the fundamental design of a story-driven open-world RPG. There's an obvious disconnect if you let the player roam freely on a massive open world and have the urgency of the main plot be conveyed only narratively. There have to be gameplay mechanics to enforce it, but I don't think I've seen many people praise the 150-day countdown until water runs out as genius design.
  3. My own lack of focus, probably. I finish a side gig and oh look what's that cyberpsycho icon there, hey what's that shootout in the alley there, oh a ripper I haven't visited before... you get the idea. I'm not actively trying to 100% the game, it's just that it's hard for me to stick to the main missions and ignore all the stuff that the game throws in my face all the time while trying to get from A to B. I don't always use the QT terminals so that's a factor too. While I would have liked more resources devoted to a bigger, better main plot, I understand how all the side stuff is necessary because the map is huge and would be pretty empty otherwise. It still is to a degree.
  4. 102 hours into CP2077 and still not making much headway. I am starting to think I'll never finish this game.
  5. No, it is irrelevant. In fact, your whole discussion of Minsk has boiled down to bringing up irrelevant stuff to distract from the fact that you somehow didn't know that the agreements did not involve any loss of sovereignty for Ukraine at all. The Minsk agreements were drafted with Ukraine as a signatory, as a starting point for a negotiated exit out of the war in Donbas. Whether "Russia is the aggressor" isn't factored in the agreements because the scope of application is Donbas, not Crimea. Also, where have I said that Russia isn't the aggressor? In fact, I have actually said the opposite. You really need to stop seeing enemies in everyone that disagrees with you, guy. "Regularly whatabouting"? You mean expecting the west to abide by the same principles they demand others adhere to? Ah yes, such a unforgivable crime. I'll stop pointing out hypocrisy and double standards from the west now -- only Russian lies, hypocrisy and brutality are fair game. The EU is very much France and Germany's territorial integrity at this point. Open borders, a common economic space and single decision making apparatus make an aggression on a member as compelling a reason for military response, in fact, as a mutual defense treaty -- even more so considering that we were discussing a hypothetical scenario where both would be in place. And yeah, the US rarely gets involved in stuff where its geopolitical interests aren't at stake, that's the thing. Power politics. But we are talking a scenario where the calculus is "interest" vs "credible existential threat". Knock yourself out. Don't cry though when you get called out for coming up with simplistic arguments, or on your lack of understanding of the topics you are "discussing". Cf. Minsk. You mean you haven't repeatedly done both? I'm happy to discuss each claim and event separately, but it's hard when it seems all you are interested in is going on furious rants and hurl insults at Russians in a forum where, to my knowledge, there are none. We get it. You don't like Russians. But no one really cares because no one here is Russian or works for Russians or even likes Russians that much. Settle down. Nah. When a narrative becomes widely accepted by the people, decisions justified by that narrative become acceptable. Dehumanizing the enemy and oversimplifying matters to make expedient political decisions more palatable are the oldest tricks in the book. Even more so in the context of nominally democratic societies where making unpopular decisions can have serious consequences short term.
  6. Note that not even the US have made any definitive statements about Putin's supposed mental state. Conjecture is all well and good but let's not lose perspective that that's all it is. Yeah, you're not wrong. But the converse is also true, war is another means of conducting negotiations for Russia. This is nothing new, and it's been repeated to death that Russia follows the old Clausewitz maxim that war is a continuation of policy with other means. You may disagree with their goals and condemn their methods, but that's still way more useful than chalking everything up to insanity and drawing tired, facile parallels to Hitler. Interesting read, by the way.
  7. I'm not nitpicking, you are conflating NATO with its members when they are separate entities. Member countries are not directed, coordinated or required by NATO to provide military material aid to Ukraine. That makes sense because that's not what NATO's mission is. So again, NATO is not the reason the Russian offensive has petered out. I posted a NATO link where it says NATO is not doing what you say it is doing. Apparently a google search of headlines supersedes NATO's own official statements. Today's political discussions in a nutshell. That's irrelevant. Implementation of the Minsk accords would have ended the war and returned overall control of the state border and disputed territories to the government of Ukraine, putting it in a much stronger position to actually defend against Russia than letting the conflict fester. Minsk also wasn't an imposition from Moscow, it was a negotiated agreement under the auspices of the so-called Normandy group. Hell, Russia refused to get involved in enforcing implementation because it was an "internal matter" of Ukraine. So yeah, there's plenty of blame to go around for the failure of Minsk, and it isn't all Russia's. Further, I went through the EU's documentation on linguistic diversity and nowhere it's stated that all of that ceases to apply if Russia is your neighbor. You mean the members that have no skin in the game and for which it's entirely a question of geopolitical interests? So France and Germany would not react to a direct threat to their territorial integrity but the US would in the same circumstances because... reasons. Heh, OK. I mean, you already can see how reluctant the US is to spark an actual war with Russia because being on the other side of the pond doesn't protect you from ICBMs -- those are the stakes. Maybe it would be good to start abandoning any delusions that NATO nowadays is little more than a cudgel used to bludgeon non-nuclear states that don't wanna toe the line as laid out by Washington. Where did I say that there is no war? That Russia isn't responsible? Stop tilting at windmills. What I am disputing is the reductionist and caricaturesque view that Russia never stopped being the Soviet Union, that they always aimed to take over all countries that gained independence after 1991, and that the ultimate reason for this is that "orcs" with "Putler" at the head are stupid and/or insane. Because observed facts over the past two decades simply don't fit that interpretation and looking at international conflicts in terms of "the enemy isn't rational and barely human anyway" makes any sort of negotiated solution much harder. And in this context, the stakes are super high. It has been explained before that, for Russia, war is simply another item on the diplomatic toolbox. As is propaganda. Despite the prevalent narrative as told by British tabloids, a land grab wasn't the point, but rather to massively increase the costs imposed on Ukraine to force them to change their stance on rearmament and the status of DPR and LPR. This is why we saw Ukraine and Russia in talks a few weeks ago, even before it was clear to what extent Russian performance wasn't so great: because for them war is on the same spectrum as diplomacy and one doesn't preclude the other. So, again, if they simply wanted to take more territory, talks would be pointless, and the timing is poor. There were no talks in 2014 when Russia annexed Crimea. That is also why Russia isn't yet doing all they can to flatten any city within striking distance -- because going full out actually reduces their leverage. But no reasons or facts are going to matter if your preferred fall-back to argument is that Russians are simply cartoon villains twirling their mustaches at every opportunity. That's not only eyeroll-inducing boring, it's also fairly dangerous if it becomes the accepted view at the decision-making level because the only path it leaves open is escalation.
  8. Is making a distinction between NATO and its members "playing with words"? NATO is not coordinating delivery of military supplies. This is per, er... NATO. 4. What are NATO and Allies doing to help Ukraine? NATO is helping to coordinate Ukraine’s requests for assistance and is supporting Allies in the delivery of humanitarian and non-lethal aid. Individual NATO member countries are sending weapons, ammunition, medical supplies and other vital military equipment to Ukraine, including in such areas as cybersecurity and protection against threats of a chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear nature. Arms and training have been a huge help to Ukraine, but they have not been delivered under the auspices of NATO, and so it makes no sense to assume that they wouldn't have happened if NATO didn't exist or, especially, if an European alternative to it was in place. You may be thinking of the CAP, but that falls squarely under military advice, something that isn't exactly a NATO invention. The US would continue supplying weapons and training much like they have done in other parts of the world for the past, uh, 80 years. The largest efforts of military equipment delivery to a foreign power happened before NATO was even proposed -- Lend-Lease and destroyers-for-bases. So no, nothing NATO is doing in Ukraine couldn't happen without NATO, and NATO is not the reason why the Russian offensive has failed to break Ukraine. I don't know man, sounds like a massive wager to assume that Europe wouldn't catch a nuke or two if they started flying in a civil war inside Russia. That's not really comical. More like a plain old rant, honestly. And Minsk did not involve handing any territory to anyone. It involved a degree of autonomy lesser than that of German federal states, local elections and a special protected status for the Russian language not unlike what we have for instance in Spain. Madness, no doubt. So, it's just your opinion, and based on nothing in particular then. OK, but if you don't believe that France or Germany would honor a commitment to defend the EU if such a mutual defense framework existed, why exactly do you think they would honor an Article 5 invocation under the same circumstances? Or... maybe that's just you jumping to your "Russians are mad and/or stupid" premise and reasoning back from there. Bucha doesn't seem to be policy, and not even Ukraine have stated that it is. But even if it were, that's not incompatible with bombing Kiev proper to rubble, and there's very little Ukraine could do about it if Russia started to fire Kh-101s or Iskanders at Kiev from inside their territory.
  9. You keep moving the goalposts -- stop it. You said that the reason Russia can't cross the Dniepr is NATO. It isn't -- NATO is a military organization, and it's not a participant in the conflict. it's the countries that conform it that have been sending supplies, but they aren't obligated by NATO to do so and it's not a NATO initiative. The US training isn't contingent on NATO because they have a long history of training foreign militaries. So again: how is NATO stopping Russian advances in Ukraine? And no, despite what you may have heard, Russians have been fairly careful not to touch Kiev itself. Their military goals have been clearly to inflict as much damage as possible to Ukraine's military to force them to accept terms.
  10. NATO is preventing Russian advances in Donbas how exactly? With strongly worded condemnations? NATO isn't a belligerent. There are no NATO units involved in the fighting and Russia's offensive seems to have run out of steam way before Ukraine started to get heavy weapons from the west. Again -- Russia isn't the Soviet Union. They did away with mass conscription a long time ago. They do not have the infrastructure to mobilize, train and equip ten million men any longer. They could perhaps over the course of the next few years, if the conflict isn't resolved and Russia keeps getting more and more isolated, seek to rebuild that capability. But that's a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy, don't you think? Ah yes, Russia shat on those agreements, but not the guarantors or Ukraine when they decided to crush resistance in Donbas militarily instead of going ahead with the implementation. Yes, everything and anything is Russia's fault. And let's not forget that they are mad and/or stupid. So you're saying that if Russia attacked an EU member, the EU would not mobilize a military response. It's an interesting theory, but let's see some evidence. Keep in mind that "they would only because NATO exists" is a bad argument because it cannot be falsified. So try something else. Sigh. Again, if Putler had wanted to conquer Ukrainian lands, he could have done it in 2014 when the Ukrainian military was in tatters, and whole units were defecting to separatists. Trying to do it now after 8 years of preparations and fortifications makes no sense. Let me guess... Russians are mad and/or stupid. 20 GOTO 10.
  11. ...do you really see Russian tanks getting anywhere near your neighborhood? Consensus seems to be that they couldn't even cross the Dniepr if they wanted. So which one is it? Are Russians a joke militarily or an unstoppable juggernaut that only America can face down? It's getting hard to keep track because the perception seems to shift back and forth depending on the point the speaker wants to make. NATO made sense when the Soviets had hundreds of thousands of soldiers and thousands of tanks parked in East Germany. Pretty sure that an European defense pact would be more than enough to beat back a Russian attack on a EU member. Can't blame you for your misgivings about the French, though. Oh, I don't know. How does implementing these Minsk agreements that were supposed to prevent the very war we are seeing today sounds for a start? I mean, I get that the current narrative has literally turned into this. So it turns out, the story goes, that Putin's master plan was always to re-create the Soviet Union. That conveniently justifies any degree of escalation of the situation because if not Putin will be worse than literally Hitler or something. Doesn't matter that that flies in the face of observed facts, statements and policies over the past 20 years. We have "Putler" to fight now so that's a fight to the death and... that's the entire depth of the argument. Am I missing anything? It's pretty funny. People keep (rightly) laughing at Russian propaganda aimed at convincing Russians that they are fighting literal nazis in Ukraine. And over here, we keep trying so hard to paint Russia as the actual nazis, with unironical references to "Putler". Obligatory:
  12. The biggest obstacle to a Nordic or European defense alliance that has European interests and security in mind is... the US. Never going to happen so long as NATO exists. I suspect Putin has a tighter grip on the local media than Nicholas had Edit: The Romanovs were not exactly popular with the people in the first place. Iirc, he (the Czar) needed victories very badly after the disastrous Far East war with Japan as the peasants had started to get very restless already, 10 years before WWI. Yeah, but it's a really awesome parallel. Let's actually stop for a moment and consider what could happen if Putin is removed via internal coup or a civil war*. Last time that happend, by all accounts, you got people in power who were even bigger butchers than the incumbent by quite a bit. Do people really think that a Putin ouster is going to end with Mr. 4% support taking over so that we can all go sing kumbaya in the Red Square? Look at the political landscape in Russia and realize that Putin is actually the moderate guy there. Is the endgame a rehash of the Western 1918 expeditions into Russia (but guys I'm sure this time it'll pan out) to put cool guy Navalny in the Kremlin or what? How do people imagine this playing out in their heads? *civil war in a country with the largest nuclear stockpile is a truly terrifying prospect and I'd argue that anyone should consider the status quo better than that possibility, but here we are.
  13. At least we have finally moved past the fake care for heroic Ukraine and started to openly admit that it's all about power politics. This also explains much better the 'fight to the last Ukrainian' stance because the goal is to take Russia down, not avoid a long and destructive war and the escalation risks it entails. Progress, of sorts. Russia isn't going to stop because the whole point of the war is to compel Ukraine by cost imposition*. If the goal had been mainly to grab land, sending ultimatums and applying pressure on Ukraine for months or years before attacking would have been counterproductive. Of course Russians are insane/stupid and didn't think of this, but us galaxy brainers at Obsidian Entertainment forums see the picture clearly. A general mobilization would help Russia little. Doctrinally, Russia has abandoned mass mobilization and lacks the reserve units and officer/NCO corps required to effectively train a large number of conscripts into something resembling competent soldiers. They may extend conscription terms and perhaps recall freshly discharged recruits who still remember which end of an AK goes toward the enemy, but options are limited. *seems to have blown up in their face though, and now the costs imposed on Russia are considerable. Still, the war is being fought in Ukraine, and if Russians decide that all they can do is dig in and simply crank up the damage with standoff weapons and artillery, it'll become a test of endurance which Ukraine may not win. For example, Ukrainian air defenses may currently prevent effective Russian air support of ground operations. But they may not be able to prevent Russia from using its massive strategic bomber fleet to level cities with iron bombs. And then we would see what indiscriminately targeting civilians actually looks like. Hopefully it won't come to that, but the outlook isn't good.
  14. I mean, if we're going to start pointing fingers at countries doing business with unsavory international players and/or exploiting war as business opportunities, I'm pretty sure that's not going to go the way some folks would like. But let's do it because all that copium ain't gonna inhale itself. Off the top of my head, arms deals alone (that's not even considering commodities and services exports): France: Apartheid South Africa Videla's Argentina Various Gulf monarchies and Turkey Egypt Er... Russia, in circumvention of EU sanctions and until ~2020? Germany* (actually ahead of France in volume): Saudi (of course), UAE, Qatar... Egypt Pinochet's Chile South Africa (until '92) Indonesia Turkey Italy and Spain are basically more of the same. They just have a proportionally smaller arms industry. United States: LMFAO Starting to see the pattern yet? Daily reminder that: Saudi Arabia is currently engaged in a war on Yemen that's allegedly an actual genocide, but we don't care and don't talk about that because Houthis are too brown to matter anyway. Egypt is since 2013 a textbook dictatorship but we don't talk about that either because they pay well and it's an unfortunate product of the Arab spring revolutions that were sure to bring peace freedom and justice to my new empire. *Bonus: German-made ATGMs have been used to blow up German-made MBTs in Syria, can't make this **** up.
  15. I'm like 80+ hours into CP2077. Haven't managed to complete anything but the first round of main jobs. I'm enjoying it quite a bit. But it does seem to have the same problem as literally every other open world game out there -- there's this super urgent main plot to save the world or whatever but you can postpone it indefinitely to go rescue cats from trees with no repercussions. Just finished this side mission about some fool that hires me to do a hit on someone. Scripted shootout sequence after a scripted driving sequence that won't let you save at any point during it once you start. That's after one of the very few convesations in the whole game you can't spacebar through, btw. I read that I'm supposed to basically take my hands off the keyboard and watch the whole thing play itself so I can listen to some deep message about something over a chain of side missions. Yeah, nah. I shot the cop in the face after the script removed his godmode (long sigh) and took my eurodollars. Scripted quest design overriding the game's own rules and player agency can suck a ****.
  16. Yeah, the reason why that take's hotter than a whorehouse on payroll day isn't because it's based fully on conjecture, indirect evidence and a metric ****ton of wishful thinking. It's because if even 95% of Russia's nuclear arsenal is inoperable due to incompetence, grafting and embezzlement, you're still looking at hundreds of millions of casualties potentially.
  17. I'm tempted to say that it can't be worse for Deus Ex than SQEnix ownership but experience has taught me that it can always be worse.
  18. Do you have any post-processing or added lighting effects stuff going on there, or is that plain old ray tracing? Game looks nothing like that for me. Not that I'm about to shell out 800 bucks for a 3070 when next gen is coming out in a bit over half a year but... damn.
  19. How indeed. Oh wait n/m they dropped "alleged" in there, so it's not like they really believed it, and it doesn't matter if they did anyway because it's OK to spread bollocks if it helps the war effort or something.
  20. Daily reminder that "US officials assert" =/= evidence. https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/national-security/us-using-declassified-intel-fight-info-war-russia-even-intel-isnt-rock-rcna23014
  21. That's not three copies of the game. Those look like expansion packs (Outdoor Living Stuff and Master Suite Stuff, can't make out which one the one on the left is). Who even buys boxed expansions these days is another matter, but AFAIK there's something of an illegal CD market in Russia still. Honestly, it is dumb to put copies of the Sims of all games alongside supposed nazi paraphernalia, but perhaps not dumber than going "hurr durr fsb cant tell difference between computer game and phone cards ". The theory about it being a tool to give teh gay to unsuspecting Russian youths works much better. But whatever, it's twatter anyway, so, eh.
  22. Imagine not having a military-industrial complex focused on perpetually producing an excess of heavy ordnance that you can throw/give away with no negative effect on your military readiness.
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