Things I learned over the weekend - Monday, 4 October 2010

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buzz_clik

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Edited By buzz_clik

Another weekend, another update to my brain's vast catalogue of probably-not-going-to-save-my-life knowledge!

Eat Lead: The Return of Matt Hazard has some genuinely funny moments in it.

I bought Eat Lead on the cheap last Friday, for two reasons. Firstly, after finishing Halo: Reach a couple of times, I just wanted some inexpensive shootery action before diving back into Oblivion. Secondly, my boss is away in America for 8 weeks and I really want to go some way to bridging the gap between our GamerScores (he's about 22,000 ahead of me). While most of the attempts at humour are pretty weak – Will Arnett's doing the best with what he's got – there have been a few spots where it dragged the chuckles out of me.

The first was when you come up against the Final Fantasy parody character, Altos Tratus. Because he's a spoof of JRPG characters, his dialogue pops up in text boxes which Hazard has to manually skip through himself. During your battle with Tratus another box will appear, showing his health and magic points, and the list of spells he can select from. Shooting Tratus will also cause a red number to float above his head, indicating the amount of health you've chipped away. Chuck in a dig about the overabundance of ellipses into the mix and it's a pretty solid encounter, both in the battle and the laff quotient.

Other amusing bits are a crack about long elevator rides (although they use this gag twice) and a section that emulates the look of Wolfenstein 3D (there are flat enemies to match, but it was the bright blue bricks that made me smile).

As for the action, I'm actually enjoying it despite myself. I know it's a pretty clunky game overall but there are some cover mechanics I think are pretty nifty improvements in the stop 'n' pop sub-genre. I'm certainly not in love with the game but for what I wanted going in and the price I grabbed it for, it has been the perfect thing to switch my brain off with.

There's a difference between Kaffir limes and Tahitian limes

 Aussie summer + alcohol + lime = YO
 Aussie summer + alcohol + lime = YO
(Yes, Sweep, more gardening!) I guess this one's obvious, since they have different names. I guess what I really learned is what makes the two stand apart from each other. Kaffir limes don't grow any reasonably useful fruit - as the dude at the nursery said, they look like "little withered brains." The Kaffir lime is only really used for its zest and its leaves when you need them for cooking.

If you want to grow lime fruit that's edible – y'know, like the one you'd fish out of your vodka, lemon, lime and bitters – you need to go with the Tahitian lime. And this is exactly what my lass and I have done, with a darling little dwarf Tahitian lime tree sitting in a large pot just outside our back door. This has been more my girlfriend's initiative, and I asked why she wanted one so. She replied that it'll be perfect for making our own mojitos at home. Always thinking, she is. What a gal.
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buzz_clik

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#1  Edited By buzz_clik

Another weekend, another update to my brain's vast catalogue of probably-not-going-to-save-my-life knowledge!

Eat Lead: The Return of Matt Hazard has some genuinely funny moments in it.

I bought Eat Lead on the cheap last Friday, for two reasons. Firstly, after finishing Halo: Reach a couple of times, I just wanted some inexpensive shootery action before diving back into Oblivion. Secondly, my boss is away in America for 8 weeks and I really want to go some way to bridging the gap between our GamerScores (he's about 22,000 ahead of me). While most of the attempts at humour are pretty weak – Will Arnett's doing the best with what he's got – there have been a few spots where it dragged the chuckles out of me.


As for the action, I'm actually enjoying it despite myself. I know it's a pretty clunky game overall but there are some cover mechanics I think are pretty nifty improvements in the stop 'n' pop sub-genre. I'm certainly not in love with the game but for what I wanted going in and the price I grabbed it for, it has been the perfect thing to switch my brain off with.

There's a difference between Kaffir limes and Tahitian limes

 Aussie summer + alcohol + lime = YO
 Aussie summer + alcohol + lime = YO
(Yes, Sweep, more gardening!) I guess this one's obvious, since they have different names. I guess what I really learned is what makes the two stand apart from each other. Kaffir limes don't grow any reasonably useful fruit - as the dude at the nursery said, they look like "little withered brains." The Kaffir lime is only really used for its zest and its leaves when you need them for cooking.

If you want to grow lime fruit that's edible – y'know, like the one you'd fish out of your vodka, lemon, lime and bitters – you need to go with the Tahitian lime. And this is exactly what my lass and I have done, with a darling little dwarf Tahitian lime tree sitting in a large pot just outside our back door. This has been more my girlfriend's initiative, and I asked why she wanted one so. She replied that it'll be perfect for making our own mojitos at home. Always thinking, she is. What a gal.
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Sweep

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#2  Edited By Sweep  Moderator

Did you know that Mexicans put lime in the neck of their beer not because it improves the taste, but to prevent flies from getting into the beer. 
 

Knowledge is power. 

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Dalai

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#3  Edited By Dalai

Shouldn't this be in the lime forum? Yes, there totally is a lime forum. 
 
And FYI, I hate lime.

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KaosAngel

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#4  Edited By KaosAngel

...you mean October right?

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buzz_clik

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#5  Edited By buzz_clik
@Dalai: It's attached to the lime page, but the whole blog's about more than lime. Also, lime speaks very highly of you.
 
@KaosAngel: Ha! You're so right. Fixed now. Cheers, mate.
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#6  Edited By turboman

I've always wanted to sit through Matt Hazard, because that game just kind of looked appealing to me, but it also looks like it controls like many other generic third person shooters with bad controls

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buzz_clik

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#7  Edited By buzz_clik
@TurboMan: The controls have their good moments and bad. The cover system actually has some cool run-to-the-spot-I'm-pointing-at action going on, with an option to stay in cover while sliding around corners, too. But on the flip side, the stickiness of the mechanic is a bit hit and miss. There are times where you want it to stick and it doesn't, and vice versa.
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#8  Edited By Milkman

The secret is exposed!

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gamer_152

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#9  Edited By gamer_152  Moderator

Eat Lead always looked like a rather lackluster game to me but it's good to hear there's at least some laughs in there. Good luck on growing your own limes sir, I don't think I've heard of a gardening project quite that cool before.

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#10  Edited By turboman

I deleted my post because I don't want to give it away, all I have to say is... how does it feel to be special?

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#11  Edited By Hamz
@buzz_clik: Games like Eat Lead that are obviously clunky and not so great games always end up being pretty decent purchases for lower prices. Half the battle today is that the games dubbed as 'bad' are only bad in comparison to the price being asked for them. Grab a poor game at a bargain price and it almost becomes a good, dare I say great, game at times. 
 
It's part of the reason Steam's massive sales end up bankrupting folks. All those games they've been eyeing up for ages that didn't feel worth the price being asked suddenly having 50-75% reductions, it's like striking gold! 
 
Good luck with the lime trees. I actually grow a few vegetables myself during the summer months. There is something oddly rewarding about harvesting what you grow and enjoying the fruits of your labours.
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buzz_clik

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#12  Edited By buzz_clik
@TurboMan: Me, special? Anybody can play Matt Hazard if they want! ;)
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KaosAngel

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#13  Edited By KaosAngel
@Hamz: ...I want to see said vegetables.  Summer is finished, so there should be some loot.
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#14  Edited By coreytn81

I have a love hate relationship with limes. I love sour foods such as limes and lemons. Back in high school over summer break I ate lemons all the time and consequently wore the enamel off of my teeth (which despite the toothpaste commercials, cannot be repaired) and have severe cold sensitivity in my teeth because of it. I've never actually grown fruit or vegetables but I have grown sunflowers for the hell of it, and that was fun to go in to the backyard every now and then and see them sprout up until a month later they are at eye level with you.

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Baillie

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#15  Edited By Baillie
@buzz_clik: I immediately went to the Matt Hazard page and looked at images. There seems to be no evidence of these so-called spoof characters and retro levels. Any equipment to get them up there? You have also peaked my interest, might have to pick this up.
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#16  Edited By mike
@buzz_clik: You can use lime rinds to freshen up your sink - just run them through the garbage disposal. Are you going to grow your own mint as well?
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KaosAngel

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#17  Edited By KaosAngel
@MB: Mints are awesome, and that's a fantastic question.  >;]
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buzz_clik

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#18  Edited By buzz_clik
@Hamz: I had the same thing happen to me when I grabbed Too Human for sweet FA. I also have a genuine enthusiasm for wanting to play bad games, so a semi-decent title with a cheap-as-chips price point is always gonna have some wiggle room.
 
On the vegetable tip, though, I've got my beds sorted out but I've gotta get some dirt delivered to fill 'em up. Oh, and some stuff to put in said dirt may be a nice addition to the project, too. 
 
@MB said:
" @buzz_clik: Are you going to grow your own mint as well? "
Mint is already planted and ready to roll!
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#19  Edited By Marino  Staff
@buzz_clik: Good luck with the limes.  Can't say I'm much of a green thumb.  Probably has something to do with being forced to pull weeds all summer for my mom when I was a kid.  I'm sure that ruined it for me.
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#20  Edited By Clouise
@buzz_clik: Good luck with the Limes. I grew some stuff this year too. Had so many tomatoes I didn't know what to do with them. Oh and my strawberry plants produced a whole two strawberries between them, lazy guys. 
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#21  Edited By ptys

I no longer want to play Halo: Reach... Entry level in multiplayer is no longer fun, just torture.

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Azteck

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#22  Edited By Azteck

Links in spoiler-boxes makes my eyes hurt. )':

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#23  Edited By Arbie
@Sweep said:
" Did you know that Mexicans put lime in the neck of their beer not because it improves the taste, but to prevent flies from getting into the beer. 
 

Knowledge is power. 

"
I did not know this but I'm glad I do! I'm going to try 1up the bartenders at my local! 1up?..oh dear
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MattyFTM

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#24  Edited By MattyFTM  Moderator

Why are the limes in that picture round? Shouldn't limes be longer with pointy bits at the end? Basically lemon shaped? Like this:

No Caption Provided
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#25  Edited By Video_Game_King

Things I learned over the weekend: Other M is controversial as hell, for some reason. I feel like I could've gotten the same results with your lime experiments :P.

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#26  Edited By citizenkane

Well while this information certainly won't save my life in a desperate situation, at least I have learned something new this week.

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#27  Edited By Finstern
@MattyFTM: Yeah, I've never seen a round lime... 
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#28  Edited By Jasta

Our neighbors grow so many different kind of fruits and so much of it (they hand it out around the street) that it seems almost pointless in trying. Still, the mother has a tomato plant and has been trying to grow rhubarb for a while now, with no success. 

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#29  Edited By Sweep  Moderator
@buzz_clik: Gardening is like a videogame, except with mud and tree's n' shit. Grind out that level 2 Cabbage!
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#30  Edited By Red12b
@MattyFTM:  
no, not necessarily,  
 
@Sweep:  
lvl 2 cabbage is nuthin, wait till you see my lvl 5 tomatoes 
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#31  Edited By tebbit

If I grew my own limes, I'd also have to grow the lemons, somehow generate my own bitters, and blow some glass to drink it in. And frankly I am far too lazy to comprehend sustaining the life of anything beyond myself. In fact, my diet is slowly killing me, so I haven't even got that base covered! 
 
But dammit if I don't enjoy a good lime.

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deactivated-57beb9d651361

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@Sweep: But is DOES improve taste ;) 
 
Great side-effect...
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buzz_clik

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#33  Edited By buzz_clik
@Marino said:
" @buzz_clik: Good luck with the limes.  Can't say I'm much of a green thumb.  Probably has something to do with being forced to pull weeds all summer for my mom when I was a kid.  I'm sure that ruined it for me. "
Cheers, mate. And ugh, weed pulling is pretty naff work. Why is it that the ugliest, shittiest plants are the ones that are most abundant and grow the fastest?
 
@Clouise said:
" @buzz_clik: Good luck with the Limes. I grew some stuff this year too. Had so many tomatoes I didn't know what to do with them. Oh and my strawberry plants produced a whole two strawberries between them, lazy guys.  "
Thanks! Yeah, I really want to grow some tomatoes myself, maybe some of those black ones. Nothing beats grabbing a freshly grown tomato and eating that sucker like an apple. God, I'd best stop now lest I drown in my own drool.
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buzz_clik

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#34  Edited By buzz_clik
@Azteck said:
" Links in spoiler-boxes makes my eyes hurt. )': "
Dude, I know! I'm gonna shoot someone a message suggesting it be changed.
 
@MattyFTM said:
" Why are the limes in that picture round? Shouldn't limes be longer with pointy bits at the end? Basically lemon shaped? "
I've definitely seen both kinds. No idea what the distinction is there, though.
 
@Sweep: I'm shouldering my +2 Spade of Swift Digging as we speak!
 
@Tebbit: I've got a lemon tree too! It was already there and well established when we bought the place, and it has turned out to be very handy.
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Video_Game_King

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#35  Edited By Video_Game_King
@buzz_clik said:
"@Tebbit: I've got a lemon tree too! It was already there and well established when we bought the place, and it has turned out to be very handy. "
As grenades to throw at your enemies' eyes, right :P?
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#36  Edited By mracoon  Moderator

Did you like the game enough the get that side-scroller they made?

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KaosAngel

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#37  Edited By KaosAngel
@mracoon: If I told you I was trying to make a mod with your avatar in a 2d scroller that was TF2 themed, would that be a quote worthy comment?  
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buzz_clik

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#38  Edited By buzz_clik
@Video_Game_King: Precisely. Their anguished squeals are food for my soul.
 
@mracoon: Nah, not yet. I'll never say never, though.
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#39  Edited By Video_Game_King
@buzz_clik: 
 
Hooray, I'm finally finished with that quest!....Wait....FUCK!!! *puts on goggles* I'M INVINCIBLE!!!
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buzz_clik

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#40  Edited By buzz_clik
@Video_Game_King: Careful, that's what this guy thought, too...

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#41  Edited By Video_Game_King
@buzz_clik: 
 
*sigh* Couldn't bother with The Simpsons, could you?
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trace

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#42  Edited By trace

You should post a picture of the lime tree sometime. I've never actually seen one, outside of the cropped images from taking a glance at Wikipedia's lime article just now. Regardless, best of luck with that, and hope it bears well.
 
Reading that sort of gardening stuff makes me think about wanting to grow something citrus-y or just fruit-bearing, but my family and I have real bad luck with that sort of thing. We tried growing tomatoes about five or six years back, and unfortunately, our surroundings are a little too woodland. The tomatoes came out fine, but raccoons and other critters got to most of them before we could get our hands on them (despite fencing and other deterrents). It also put a fast-growing vine into the ground that messed with a lot of our other plants worse than the usual weeds, and was a tremendous pain to deal with.
 
Ah well. Growing can be kind of neat to read about when you don't have to deal with the disappointing or work-intensive bits.

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#43  Edited By ZombiePie  Moderator
@buzz_clik:  Not much of a citrus growerer. I prefer tomatoes and onions as well as peppers. Fresh Pico de Gallo is great. Tried growing pumpkins once but it takes up too much space.
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#44  Edited By KaosAngel
@ZombiePie: That is the best thing you ever said on the site, you can quote me on that.
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buzz_clik

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#45  Edited By buzz_clik
@Video_Game_King: I'm not one to do what's expected of me.
 
@PsEG: The lime tree is tiny at the moment, but I'll post something once it's a more impressive bit of flora. I know your pain with critters making off with your produce, too - we've got a fig tree and birds keep getting to it before we do. That same fig tree was also being overgrown by a goddamn overzealous creeping plant that I had to wage war on before I could prune the tree's branches. Seriously, creepers can be the worst, fer sure.
 
I find it really curious/odd/encouraging/cool that people actually find this gardening stuff interesting to read about. While I'm not ever going to concentrate purely on the greenery (gaming > green thumbs) it's fun to pepper some blog posts with my (mis)adventures in the back yard.
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#46  Edited By ZombiePie  Moderator
@KaosAngel said:
" @ZombiePie: That is the best thing you ever said on the site, you can quote me on that. "
What did I say? Off to Urban Dictionary to figure out what I have unintentionally said!
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#47  Edited By KaosAngel
@ZombiePie: I <3 you.  I promise, one day I will find a way to repay you.  :)
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#48  Edited By Video_Game_King
@buzz_clik: 
 
Even when it works better than what you just did?
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#49  Edited By buzz_clik
@Video_Game_King: Especially so. Detrimental recalcitrance, thy name is buzz_clik.
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#50  Edited By Video_Game_King
@buzz_clik: 
 
And thy surname is confusing.