Raven10's forum posts

#1 Edited by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

@quarters: Arrow is an interesting case study in modern TV show pacing. It has so many subplots going on at any one time that many episodes feel hectic and quite a few feel pointless when they first air. I think the brilliance of the show, and why I always watch despite some episodes not being all that great on their own, is that by the end of each season, each and every character in every single episode ends up having a purpose. It's hard to imagine how certain episodes will amount to anything more than filler, but then suddenly these seemingly unrelated things all tie together in a way you don't expect. In SHIELD this season I don't think they've had one bad episode. But the overall structure of the show isn't as tight from a storytelling perspective. It can be hard to get into and stick with Arrow, but if you are willing to watch a show that is MUCH darker than SHIELD or The Flash then I would give it a go. It's a dark and brutal show, the type that The CW normally doesn't put out, but I think the way the story arc of each season concludes makes all of the tonal issues and seemingly pointless characters and sub-plots feel worth it and in a way even intentional.

@theht: It's truly amazing how SHIELD went from a mediocre teen melodrama with occasional sci-fi elements to one of the best parts of the MCU in such a short amount of time. It really makes you wonder what would happen to other shows with great premises that start off on the wrong foot if they were given a chance to right the ship for a second season instead of getting cancelled after three episodes. Networks are so obsessed with having the very best ratings every single week they don't give shows enough time to grow. I always mention Looney Tunes when things like this happen. While not a TV show, WB put out its first Looney Tunes short in 1930. But they didn't introduce Daffy Duck until 1937, Bugs Bunny until 1940, and most other popular characters until after that. If the studio had cancelled the project after a couple mediocre episodes, instead of 40 years worth of incredible cartoons we would have had 40 minutes worth of crap.

#2 Edited by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

So I thought that there are probably a lot of comic book fans among us and we just saw the midseason finales of The Flash, Agents of SHIELD, and The Arrow. So I'm curious what people's thoughts were on the finales and the shows themselves so far this season.

So spoiler alert for anyone not caught up on those three shows!

At the start of the season I was pretty meh on The Flash. The super corny monologues and overdone melodrama just weren't doing it for me. But I think they have found their footing by now and I really enjoyed this last episode. Of the three I think it is the only one that didn't happen almost exactly how fans predicted it. Is Wells the Reverse Flash? Are they separating Zoom and Reverse Flash into two characters and having them both? I admit that I know next to nothing about The Flash as a character but I have no idea who or what Wells is going forward. All the action scenes were also great and the pacing was much improved over the crappy crossover episode and some of the earlier episodes. It was a solid 4/5 to me.

Arrow started out the season super strong with that amazing opening episode and the even better second episode. But it kind of lost its way after that. The Arrow always has that issue midseason where you aren't sure where they are going with everything and certain episodes feel pointless. But if this season turns out like the last two I'm sure everything will end up falling in place. Meanwhile, I guess I didn't expect Thea to be Sarah's killer but I think it will end up being an interesting way to evolve the character. And I'm really glad the epside ending with Ra's just butchering Ollie in like 30 seconds without even trying. It shows just how powerful he is compared to every villain on the show thus far and it will be interesting to see Arrow's version of the Lazarus Pit as that is obviously the only direction for the show to go from here. The Lance family portions of the episode didn't really go anywhere, though, so I would say this episode was maybe a 3/5.

Last season SHIELD suffered from major tonal and pacing issues. They got things down by the end of the season but this season just took things to a whole different level. Talk about most improved show. Every character has changed for the better, and while Skye being an Inhuman I think has been obvious for a while, the reveal of her being Daisy and her father being Mr. Hyde was well done if not unexpected. I just really like the acting and writing on SHIELD. In any other show(or movie honestly), Skye would have let Ward turn around and give her a speech before shooting him. Same with Coulson and Whitehall. It was great to see highly trained special agents behave like highly trained special agents. And I am really glad Skye (or should I call her Daisy now?) didn't just forgive Ward like, again, she would have done in most other shows. The special effects may have been a step below those of The Flash, and neither show is shot and edited nearly as well as The Arrow. But overall I think I enjoyed it the most of the three finales. 4.5./5

So what did everyone else think?

#3 Posted by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

@privodotmenit: Okay, I'll concede that there are certain situations where it would be helpful. But for $500 he isn't going to be getting anything ending in 50. Most laptops in that range are lucky to have a dedicated GPU at all, and if they do it is a couple generations old and on the very lowest end of the spectrum.

#4 Posted by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

I'm not entirely sure what you are asking but if you are asking if Jeanne D'Arc will ever come to PSN in Europe, I have no idea. It's a fun game, though. I would maybe say it is Level 5's most underrated RPG.

#5 Edited by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

I would never recommend a laptop for gaming for any number of reasons, but if you are going to stick to older games and indie games with simple graphics then you might be able to find something. Try to find a computer with a quad core CPU (like a Core i5 for example), at least 4 GB of RAM (although six will give you more legroom so to speak) and a graphics card with a minimum of 1 GB of RAM that supports DX11. For AMD graphics cards you want the number to end in 80 or 90 (or 870 or 950 for older models) such as a Radeon 280 for example. A 270 might do as well but that is very low end for gaming. On the Nvidia front you'll want something ending in 60 or 70 (with the 750 ti being the bare minimum I could recommend if they have a laptop version of that card). The ones ending in 80 or 90 are better but they cost more than $500 alone.

EDIT: Looking through that list the only one I could recommend as even a light gaming machine would be the HP Envy Touchsmart. You are absolutely not going to be running any game released in the past several years at all and older ones only on the lowest settings at no more than 30 fps, but 2D games and games more than 5 years old should run just fine. checked the minimum specs for Dark Souls and I'd say a desktop version of the GPU in that computer would meet the minimum specs just barely but a laptop version I wouldn't recommend.

#6 Edited by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

I try to combat that by playing both an open world game and a linear game at the same time. I think a bit of the problem this year specifically is that there were far fewer AAA games released than most year's and Ubisoft managed to get like four or five games out there. Normally you'd have a bunch of other games to play in addition to those but so many games got delayed that people who want to play AAA stuff really have very little choice outside of Ubisoft games. And sadly (in a way) the few other games that made it out this year also had either a partially open world structure(like Destiny) or happened to be major open worlds themselves(Infamous, Dragon Age, Sunset Overdrive, Shadows of Mordor). Part of the problem is that a lot of developers had to work with such crazy RAM constrictions last generation that they jumped at the chance to make something more open. But that ended up being the strategy everyone used which obviously made it hard to find quality linear games this year.

#7 Posted by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

I wasn't a massive fan of The Unfinished Swan. Some of the puzzles were clever but others were just frustrating and I didn't find the story and affecting as some people did. So while I hope this game turns out good I'm more looking forward to the other indie games announced this weekend from Hazelight and The Fulbright Company.

#8 Posted by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

@dussck: All the bouncing light and shadow in the cave was super impressive. I didn't mention it because you could mostly see it even in the compressed video, but their lighting engine is definitely incredibly impressive. Really my only issue was that when the light was reflecting off the wet rocks it caused some shimmering artifacts I assume were caused by some post-process technique, maybe AA. The skin shader was definitely super impressive as well. I think their work with small facial movements are great and they also have character's eyes move around slightly and focus on what they are looking at which takes away from the dead eye effect seen in so many other motion captured CG sequences in both games and movies.

#9 Posted by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

@aegon: I was glad to see them taking cues from The Last of Us with the AI that lost Nathan when he hid and that jumped between ledges and such. And the larger level seemed to let you get through the encounter in several different ways. If all the encounters are like that I would say they fixed my main problem with the previous games - the fact that the combat was boring if it didn't take place in some set piece area.

@sammo21: Well in their defense Naughty Dog usually shows one of their big set pieces for these reveal demos and they took another route here which I think disappointed some people who just wanted to see shit blow up. This demo, though, let them show the improvements to gameplay they have made as well as all their cool new tech, but if you were expecting a falling building or crashing plane then this might disappoint.

#10 Edited by Raven10 (2048 posts) -

@spazmaster666: Sorry. To clarify I mean they don't compress it further than what they get. This 1.6 GB video is what Sony sent to media outlets and most then compress that video into a variety of resolutions and container types. So they are compressing an already compressed video which, when it comes to lossy formats is the type of thing that quickly degrades quality. So yes, it is lightly compressed in its original form but at 1.5 GB we are talking very, very minimal compression to the point that it isn't noticeable by the naked eye.