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About Streamlock

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  1. Well, as someone who does work in R&D I have some pretty hard set realities on an individuals or groups right to protect their IP. I could write 20 pages on the subject probably.....So to try put this more succinctly.... An individual or group not only has the right, but the responsibility to protect their IP from theft, abuse or fraud. Regardless of the source of that IP (something tangible, like a better mousetrap, or less so like the script of a book or code of a game). Unless or course the creators of said IP explicitly choose to allow others to utilize/share it in a specific or non-specific way. (You know, I want everyone to share in this beautifully written prose, or I just hate mice and want everyone to apply this knowledge in building the better mousetrap to assist in ending the mouse scourge). For a capitalist based economy to function-this has to be the case. The copyright and patent protections are in place to facilitate this. Allow the free flow of ideas within society while encouraging open competition, profit motive, and private investment. (It's of course a little more complicated-but you get the jist of it) That being said, as a consumer there are some things one expects when allowed the right to exploit the works of another (whether the right to make and market a better mouse trap utilizing another's contribution to mouse trap design, paying to listen to a single performance of a song, or purchasing the right to enjoy that song anytime one wishes via purchasing a CD or MP3) This is where it starts to get a bit complex.....To focus on the applicability to PE, at what point does the content creators responsibility (not just right to) to protect their creation unfairly (both legally and morally) begin to interfere with the groups/individuals consumption of that creation. Consumption that included transfer of material wealth for the right/ability to consume that content? It's not an easy question to answer. Truth of the matter, PE, or any other digital content is created and distributed with technology specifically designed to allow for fast and easy transfer of information, not one designed to limit it. The technology simply does not exist at this point to fully reconcile the situation/s when applied to digital content creation and distribution. It has become a mathematical equality. You can no longer take away from one side of the equation without taking something away from the other. Technology is quickly evolving, and hopefully one day something comes along that can change that equation, but for now we are stuck in this quagmire of DRM and consumer rights with no specific solution. As a final note, or warning even.....Using the math analogy from above-setting one side of that equality to zero always end up getting the other side of that equation solving for no value. And that is not a situation beneficial to anybody. (Note: I was kind and did not use a calculus based analogy) (edited)
  2. I think they should model them after cheesy white guys pretending to be asian dudes who draw the power of their inner chi' via the anient and secret technique of auto-erotic-asphyxiation........... Or something.
  3. Detailed is fine, as long as it makes some kind of sense and the interface is designed to handle it intuitively. For instance, when swapping out party members, to have to swap one out to get both your party so you have to manually transfer every item, then swap again......Or in classic Buldar's gate fashion, have to dump 2 of potion A to make room for a full set of dragon scale armor just becuase they wouldn't stack in the same square as potion B-that you have 50 of (and carry another 49 of without penalty)...........Is just silly. The inventory system of the old infinity engine games are not bad because they were to detailed, it was just plain bad. It could be argued that the lack of 'detail' (a single arrow taking up the same space as a full set of armor) was as large as an issue as inculsion of a detailed inventory. Project Eternity would benifit from a detailed and easy to use/intuitive interface and design. The two are not mutually exclusive. It doesn't need an option to enable bad game design for nostolgia's sake.
  4. Oh, for the love of all that is good in gaming. I know this game is supposed to hark back to the old Infinity engine games, but the inventory management mini-game that was Buldar's Gate was just stupid. I don't mind items having mass, I don't mind items taking up some kind of space in your backpack/bag/whatever.....But that whole game of squares was just got horribly absurd. I actually didn't mind it the first 50 hours or so of a playthrough-but whatever novelty it held wore thin, ruptured, then collapsed in on itself. I'm dead serious, the "Micky Mouse Backpack Organizing Simulator" very well may hold some value as some kind of Facebook social nongame-for for the love of God-Don't bring that part of the classic Infinity engine games back! If you want a backpack simulator-go boot up an old Ultima game (talk about silly). (I'm probably going to get hammered by the folks that think mages should have to manually fix the bindings in their spellbooks in some obtuse click and drag fashion, but oh well).
  5. Some good points. (Ha, for starters-in a cruel sense of irony, the hand-holding from modern word processors has killed my spelling skills) Firstly, I guess I came off as promoting a GTA style sandbox or even a Skyrim open world above and beyond all things. That was not my intention. In fact, I have not been able to play more then a couple hours of GTA IV (I don't have a logical reason for this honestly, I played Vice City and San Andreas just fine. For whatever bizzare reason I can't get into it). Those open world games are fine, but you can have a more contained, dare I say even-a more directed gameplay experience without sacrificing player agency and/or taking the gaming away from the gamer. Secondly-perhaps throwing the modern mil. shooter into the discussion was....unfair? I would agree that the single player portions of that genre have become little more then a giant promotional peace to sell the MP experience on. Maybe at best a pretty distraction. And that may be as much by design as anything else. Also, I don't think what I've been refering to as the 'cinecraptic' gaming experience is without some merit. Though it runs counter to my argument, I did enjoy the FMV mess that was Wing Commander III back in the day. (Though I will go to my grave proclaiming the original Privateer was the best the series had to offer). Is homogenization the problem? A focus on recent releases on a more cinematic experience? Are wonderful models, animation, and VO's mutually exclussive to the players ability to, if not effect the story, to have some level of agency on how it is paced, viewed, or interacted with? Is it just cost prohibitive to do so? ...../shrug
  6. (Warning-this may be long). Let me start out by a childhood story. I was at the local Fred Meyer's as a child. So young I had to be held up by my armpits to play the arcade boxes. This game called "Dragon's Lair" cought my eye. I was so totally enthralled with it. I begged my Dad and Uncle to play it. The response (Son, that is not a game, it's just a cartoon you have to put quaters in to watch and hit buttons every once in a while) Once I got older, and found an old box, I realized they were correct. It was not a game at all. Several years later, and home/PC gaming was introduced to the CDrom. I remember playing some PC Lawnmower man, and wodered what the hell I was even doing. Just totally on rails. This was right at the start of the FMV hell period in gaming. "Cinimatic" experience played out via a few button presses. Fast foward to today, and video games are rendered in greater detail, in real time then alot of those old FMV's. But the effect is the same. I just came off of a Halo4 playthrough, and just put the controller down during the 2nd campaign playthrough. Weapon's dissapearing, quick time events, sandcrawler rails section, rooms that you just went through locking for no appearent reason, wave combat, after wave after wave.... Yeah sure, the story was always a linear on rails affair, but the gameplay. It had a wave scenario, or a turret scenerio sprinked in here and there, but the battlfield was emergant. Here is where you have to go-have fun getting there. The modern military shooters have become a running joke as of late. Even Bioware, the old masters of the RPG has went down this "cinecraptic" experience hell-hole from where gameplay cannot escape. FFS, if I want a cinematic experience, I'll go to the damn cinema! I love really pretty graphics and the occasional cool as hell cut-scene just as much as the next guy. But where is the gameplay? "Press button to watch next in game scripted sequence". Thats not fun, that's the Dragon's Lair of 20 some-odd years ago with photo-realism esque graphics. Whats the difference? I can turn my head a bit-if I'm lucky? Hack down dude A before dude B? Maybe I"m preaching to the choir here, but the whole "cinimatic experience" is not just ruining my hobby-video games, it's actually removing the game out of games. They are hardly games anymore. Give me agency. Create an interesting world, with interesting characters, with good fun mechanics and let me loose. I'm at the point were I'm just going to not buy the latest AAA release and watch it on youtube. At this rate-is there really much difference? 60$ for 7-9 hours of gamplay with little to no replayability? I don't care how pretty it looks, or how well scripted the events are-that is just not very good value for the money. Sorry-just had to rant a bit. In my opinion, the cinicraptic experience is ruining every game it touches. Or maybe just like the FMV hell hole of years past-it will die a horrible death. (Here is hoping at least).
  7. I just didn't buy the damn thing. Vote with wallet.
  8. Ooops, let me phrase what I asked above in a different framework-I only have available a 360 and PC to game on at the moment....
  9. On JRPG's.....Let me make an admission of guilt-As much as I now rag on JRPG's, I used to be an ardent fan of them. Up until FF VIII. I could not bring myself to finish that horrid excuse for a game. (I think I got to the part where you find out your all orphans of the evil witch Mom, or some nonesense). I am a bit of a compleionist, and for me not to follow through and finish a game I started is rare. It jaded me so horribly bad, that I have not been able to get into another JRPG. The same thing happened with 1st person RPG's, the second Ultima Underworlds was so horrible, I refused to purchase/play another 1st person RPG. Skyrim changed that, it was the first 1st person RPG I had bought in ages, and despite it's myriad of shortcommings, I really enjoyed it. Though most of my friends say I'm not missing much, I'm thinking there is some JRPG gem out there that is not totally some sick mess of "Saki puke on a story board, sexualization of 14 year old school girls, adrogynous ansgty teen, ridiculous outfits and hair, mini-game/quick time event" crap. Is there something out there worth checking out? Or am I just to jaded?
  10. Yeah, I guess if I could have found a way to work in accountant side boob, the realism of accountants in full a plat thong, or how the tax code of old was supperior to the newb 1040 EZ forms AND figure out a way to work in an argument about inclusion of romances in Obsidians next 1099 filling......... Well-it would have probably garnered more views if nothing else.
  11. Well, looks to be ways to work it so Kickstarter funding/investment does not get evaporated prior to the products release if nothing else. Good to know, also it appears that some networking of Kickstarter devs is going on behind the scenes, so hopefully the lessons learned from one group is being shared with other developers/what have you. If what some have said is truly the case, and if you can not significantly reduce the tax liability for project investment funds, and it just gets defered until the delivery of goods.....The downside is a major tax bill on the back end, that has it's own headaches. Regardless, an ealier post stated that Obsidian knows, or hired someone to navigate the overly obtuse tax code, and that the KS funding will be utilized more toward it's maximum potential and not "lost in (tax) spaaaaaaaace". More to the point, they should not have to spend massively at the beginning of the project-for better or worse.
  12. I have no idea really, from just a quick job on the interwebs, this is from Forbes.... "In basic terms (and this certainly doesn’t constitute tax advice!) if you spend all the money you raise on producing your reward items within the same business year, then your tax liabilities would be reduced. If you don’t manage to buy all your bits and are left with a surplus at the end of the your financial year, then tax could take a sizeable chunk of it, leaving you with less to spend on your project." On the subject of Kickstarter fundraising. Also...."in 2011, Kickstarter started filing crowd-sourced funds as taxable income. Amazon (Kickstarter’s payment processor) files a 1099 on your behalf to the IRS– so the IRS definitely knows about the money you’re making, and counts it as income." that information is a year old or so though.
  13. I had read from a couple developers that previously, any money collected from kickstarter donations not spent by the end of the fiscal year are considered 'profits' from a taxation standpoint (in the States at least) and as such is treated as taxible buisness income. I had also heard some rumblings that in Washington they were considering passing legislation to treat crowdsource funding as a sort of investment, and give exclusions to such taxation until actual sales/services are rendered. As it applies to PE, will that force to 'frontload' a lot of the dev work in the 1st year to avoid....that is the wrong word, 'utilize' the current tax code in such a way to make the most out of raised funds? Music, art, sound assets, any farming that needs to be done? I guess I'm seeing a scenario where that to make the most use of available funds, discissions have to be made early that may or may not mesh well with a traditional 2 year+ game dev cycle. Dunno though, not an expert myself.
  14. I don't know if you can not ruin your experience like PE if you choose to beta it. I mean, I guess it does not matter for some people, but I would be inclined not to participate. I guess ruin is to strong......Lesson the experience?
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