Sins of a Solar Empire impressions.

I finally managed to find this game...

The horizon is made out of pixy-sticks.
So, impressions right? Well, I can sum this entire blog up with the words 'Slow', 'Fun' and 'A shitload of options'. But I won't.

Sins of a Solar Empire is quite frankly, the slowest of the slow paced games out there. Infact, I used to turtle up in most RTS games and wait until the enemy either gave up or nuked the hell out of me, so I'm used to working slow. But this even got me surprised. See, I'm still playing this skirmish with 11 AI's. As there's no story mode or anything of that sort. But back to the story - With still, I mean: It's my very first match I played within the game. And I have the game for well over two days now.

Heck, according to the ingame timer - I've been playing that match for nine hours already.

And wanna know how much progress I made in nine hours? I got a big-ass fleet of ships(around 200 seperate), three (big-ass) capital ships, nine planets under my control and a crapload of astroids being sucked dry due to my powarz.

Now, that might just look like alot, doesn't it? Wrong. Look at it again, when comparing it to the max. limit.
200/1750 ships, 3/16 Capital Fleets, 9/187 Planets...

Hell, there's roughly around the 40-50 planets per star system. And there's FOUR of those too!

So in a nutshell - The games mothafuckin' huge. And that still remains to be one big understatement.
But I like it. It's got quite a bit of depth, while missing a storyline, they sort-of promised that to come with the new expansion pack that should arrive within the next two or three months. Nontheless, it's the only game that doesn't flatout lie about what is on the cover:

"Unrivalled Scale". That ain't no lie. It took my fleet nearly 20 minutes to travel from one star system to the next one.

Also, about the graphical side of matters. This game is truely breathtaking. From millions of light years away, it looks amazing. And even looking at bird's eye view over a ship, it still looks amazing. I got all the settings on "Very High" and it never stutters or anything. Not even when there's nearly 1500 ships on screen, duking it out for a floating piece of rock.

What? I didn't say anything negative about the game? Well...

The AI in this game is so damn good, it sort of gives me the feeling that I shouldn't even be there. All I gotta do is "Build Ship" and then the game seriously can take care of itself, and be even better than me. Sure, it's necessary considering you can't simply check up on nearly 30 different fleets over up to 10 different star systems - But Y'know, seeing as this game is already this slow paced and doesn't give you that much to do while waiting for these bastards to fly from one globe to another; Having AI that makes you feel obsolete doesn't make you feel any more entertained.

Yeah, yeah... Thumbs up.
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The most annoying achievement in GTAIV...

Gobble fuckin' Gobble, you bitches!































Now, on the X360/PS3 versions of GTAIV there's a simple trick to pulling off strikes. One step left, hold the trigger back for one second, push it forward for one second.

On the PC, you have to play these minigames as if it's a Wii.

I have to swing the mouse back and forth like I'm trying to swing a sixhundred pound lead ball across a goddamn field. Hell, thanks to that - I even threw the ball onto the lane next to mine. I didn't even knew that was possible...

But eventually, mainly due to Niko's slick outfitting(Average Joe ftw) I got 3 strikes in a row, pissed my pants with joy and came to the sad realisation that it's just an achievement and that I gain numbers and not monies.

I just broke your stride. And my own, but let me enjoy my moment.
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A few things...

See, I even have GTAIV TWICE.
Yes, if your memory works you remember the hordes of GotY blogs. I forgot about mine. So in a nutshell, Call of Duty: World at War 3rd, Fallout 3 is 2nd and GTA:IV's the winner. I would've picked Saints Row 2 as my third place... sitter. But after having listened to the mindless babble of a man who wants to be Billy Mays and Bob Saget's bitch, I came to realize that I'm a fanboy to anything that is GTA or something alot like it.

Also, I wanna make a small shoutout(WTF does shoutout mean? MySpace'd 'Shootout'?): Bruce Willis needs to grow his hair back. How? Well, a wig'll do. He needs to pick up a Glock, invite the most insane German actors who've either recently been in A: A German Schiesser Movie, or B: Can say "Motherfucker" as if they're trying to say "Frankfurther sausages". And then think of some whack-job plot only John McClane can star in. Then make a good Die Hard 5.


Anyway.

  • For a good while now, I've been busting my ass trying to find this PC game called "Sins of a Solar Empire". I've been looking in local stores, and even online. Local stores don't have it, and ordering it online has a 4-6 weeks delivery time to it. IGN called this their PC game of the year, how can it be so hard to obtain?
  • Call of Duty: World at War's a damn good game. Even though it's almost so alike to CoD4 that it could've been a mod - I gotta say; Well done Treyarch.
  • When the hell does Alan Wake come out?
  • The GTA:IV Episode 'The Lost and the Damned'... It just doesn't appeal to me. I mean, I already HATED the bike missions in IV... Even more for 20$? Lovely.
  • Also, modding GTA:IV's a bitch. I understand with the whole Hot Coffee thing being just 4 years back, but this game is designed watertight. Infact, all GTA games had this... issue. For instance, San Andreas was like a brick wall. It took people months to smash through and tear it to hell. GTAIV's a whole different story. Hell, it looks like they designed it to fall apart when people try to look deeper into it. Though, some modders already made file extention mods, which allows the user to read/open/alternate any of the files. And so it starts...
  • It's been snowing like crazy overhere in New York lately. The daytime traffic which usually goes at an amazing pace of 12MPH avg. now goes 2-5MPH.
  • One more thing about Call of Duty: WaW - The Red Army campaign is amazing. Truely brutal, cold and for one - It's a breeze due to the PPSh-41. I completed all but two Red Army missions on Veteran. While I struggle to get to the first checkpoint in most American missions on Veteran. Also, it's good to know that Treyarch copied the lovely little "Enemies throw grenades like pro MLB MVPs." thing. I live through hordes of bullets, until half a dozen grenades end up right next to me.


That is all.

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And so shit hits the hyper-drive.

I guess this ain't the place to say this sort of stuff, but it beats talking to a wall. Or chair.

My girlfriend called me around three hours ago, and sounded as if she cried. She said "NJ, I'm pregnant" and hung up the phone. I tried calling back, and we started talking. She was sick for a week or two now, bit worse than usual. The local doc. called it natural, but eventually her female roommate(who was in the same situation two years ago, so I've been told) told her to get a pregnancy test. One of them home kits. "Just to be sure", she said.

It was that time of the month, she checked the thing again after sometime and it came back positive. She went Oh-noes, she called me and I said Oh-shits.

But skipping to the point...

She's pregnant, she's about to turn 20, I am 20, it's January 1st, I'm a UPS driver, she's a secretary, I live alone, she's with a friend, my VISA's screwed and I'm still on the verge of getting deported out of this country, I didn't tell my folks yet, neither has she told hers, we both hate protection AAAANNNNDDD... The first time I ate at her folks' place, first her lovely pops stared at me for an hour, then her father showed me his little friend in his cars' trunk. A sawed off shotgun. He then blinked, and made me shit my pants. I can safely consider my ass to be dead.

Yeah, I've had better news before.

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Quote of the year 2008.

The quote of the year is...
"Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!", by Sgt. Reed Roebuck(voiced by Kiefer Sutherland) from the game Call of Duty: World at War.

Why?
Cause it can go along with everything...


Reed, I did your wife last night.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

Roebuck, your car has been stolen, your wife left you, your house caught fire and you owe the IRS half a million.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

The mailman is the father of your child, sir.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

Rosie O'Donnell's gonna get booted off TV.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

I took all what you have, all your base are belong to me.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

You're so sued.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

Mr. Roebuck, NYPD. You're under arrest.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

When you jumped infront of that bus for insurance money and broke all but one bone in your body - You didn't have any insurance, sir.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

7-kill streak, bitch.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

Your son pissed in the sink, and shat in the dresser. I hope you're proud of what you taught him! <sad face>
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

I'm sorry to inform you, Mr. Roebuck... Your wife did not make it.
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

LCPD, motherfucker! WE GOT YOU NOW, ASSHOLE!
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

We defeated them Nazi bastards!
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!

... And so we all became Communists, wonderfull, huh?
Outstanding! Out-fucking-standing!



See?

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Damn, I'm good.

Yes. I broke my computer once again.

BUT! THIS TIME IT'S DIFFERENT!
For once...

I completely did it myself this time around. No-one to blame but me, myself and that lousy chick-flick Titanic.

See, I stopped listening to my own stupidity for a while and decided to replace the parts which I thought were causing problems. I bought a brand new 600GB Samsung HDD, a new Nvidia 8800GTX(same one as I have right now... It's quite a good one, still) and a new set of speakers while I was shopping anyway. Now, I might be the biggest damn bonehead you can possibly find - But I didn't attempt to replace the parts all by myself.

Considering I spend nearly 400$ on parts, risking these while under my sole control is like letting a thief keeping a eye on your unlocked sportscar.

Oh, by the way... I had a 12-month warranty going on the thing, but that expired last November - So it's either replacing the essentials, or spending two second-hand cars worth of money on a new brick.

So I called the guy who put my PC together, and he was kind enough to guide me through replacing these parts... We'll see about that phone-bill soon.
Anyway, I replaced the HDD first, as that was a matter of unplugging the BIOS cable and unscrewing the thing, replacing it and plugging that cable back in. The graphics card wasn't that much more difficult either...

The problem was more or less the fact that the thing was directly connected to the motherboard, and took more than just a screwdriver and a shitty mood to take out. He pointed out again that the thing is designed to slide into the slot, so it's a matter of pulling it out at a discrete 90 degree angle. I told him that the thing was is the highest slot, and was more or less stuck underneath the motherboard plug-ins. (Keyboard, mouse, printer, USB's, internet cable, etc).

He simply said "You already unplugged all the wires, right? If you did, push it out with one hand and catch it with the other.". I said that it's stuck, and he said, yet again, to push it out.

Now before I go on. I should point out that the simple PC case I ordered with the thing was for a reason. It's a highly customizable case, so adding or removing stuff wouldn't become a puzzle. Basically, you can remove entire walls within the PC and add entire walls(Walls = Those grid-things specially made to hang up PC parts)...

Anyway, I started pushing the thing out. And suddenly, I just boosted the thing out like crazy, breaking down the entire rear-wall out. I never knew it could be customized this way, that you could remove all of the graphic-card slots from the rear.

To sound less cryptic...
Simply put - I forced the entire back-wall out. So my GFX-card launched out, ripped out all the USB slots, keyboard/mouse slots, and the like. The only thing I didn't magically damage was the processor and the motherboard. Mostly.

Technically, I should be able of shoving the blame on the guy because he told me to push it out. But, there's two things that I should've taken into consideration before even doing all of this.
- The computer case was 12$. It was the cheapest I could find. It's even made in motherfuckin' Mexico. I didn't even know they made PC cases overthere.
- Prime lesson for when working with parts that break faster than glass: NEVER EVER use brutal force.

But yes... I thought, what the hell. I got time. I already have the parts, I'll call the fella' and see how it'll go. Yeah, kinda screwed the pooch.

Also, for once. It has sort-of a happy ending to it. The fella's a really nice guy. Infact, weren't it for my subbornness, this wouldn't have happened; He offered to replace these two parts twice already, for a small fee. Really, a great guy. Don't find too many of those here in New York City. Tomorrow, he's willing to repair the entire damn thing for 50$ and even replace those parts properly. All I gotta do is bring the PC, and the parts to him, and I can pick it up again on January 2nd.

So... Did I learn my lesson? To never meddle with high-tech crap again, using brute force?
The hell do you think? Of course not.

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