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Topics - Verkinix

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Spore: General / Spore & RA3 loading issues - Solved
« on: January 14, 2009, 05:55:29 am »
Hey all,

I finally solved my problems with loading Spore, RA3, and Sims 2.  Previously, I would load any of the programs and they would hang at 50% cpu and 11k-14k loaded and I would have to end task over and over again until it would take.

So, I thought about what might be conflicting and causing issues.  I stumbled upon where my EADM was installed.  Turns out that EADM was on my main C drive and my games are loaded onto my games D drive.  Two separate HDDs within my laptop that only run at 5400 RPM.  So I uninstalled EADM completely from my machine.  Now I load RA3 & Spore immediately.

So it turns out that either EADM is causing the conflict or the fact that it was on a different physical HDD that was causing the problem.  It could be, too, that the HDDs are just too slow in the laptop to load in a timely manner.  Simplest solution seems to be getting rid of EADM crap all together until it's actually needed for patches and such.  But EA has one patch every 6-9 months so its not a big deal to not have it loaded.

Anyway, I hope this helps those with similar issues.  Also, feel free to add to this if you all find other solutions.

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Spore: General / Escape Key Woes
« on: October 05, 2008, 10:53:18 am »
So, since the patch, the escape key no longer bypasses the EA splash screen and has issues on normal cinematic screens.

Basically, when I die at any point in the game and hit the escape key to skip the stupid cinematics, my creature/ship/whatever does not spawn if I hit the escape key before the creation "launches" in the cinematic.  What does happen is the camera will get locked to something "under" the ground and become unresponsive, immobile, and there is nothing to do, but quite the game, losing all progress to that point.  Further, the escape key will not bring up the menu screen.  And if you open the menu manually by the icon and save, then reload the save, the game returns to the same state.

Now, I've tried contact EA tech support several times now and have yet to get a response. Half the time, the tech support site doesnt even load. This has been going on since the patch released and is irritating beyond measure.  So I am posting this here in hopes that someone from maxis will actually read it and report the bug through the proper channels.

I honestly dont know why the cinematics need to play EVERY time you die. I mean geez, you're already PO'ed that you die and now you are being enraged further because you're being prevented from getting right back into the game. This is especially compounded in the space stage where you can die 6 or 7 times in a row because you load at the city thats under attack and get raked over the coals upon load. So 34.6 minutes to load the cinematic and 2.3 seconds before you die again. So hitting escape helps a little bit, only 3 minutes of loading cinematic and 2.3 seconds alive before getting destroyed. The cinematics just need to be removed.

On a side note, there needs to be some kind of defense IN space. You enter a hostile space and get destroyed before you make it to the system to actually talk to the enemy. Or you are trying to leave the planet and get destroyed in space due to loading and needing to take 15 minutes to scroll.

Anyway, I would try reinstalling the game, but I dont want to lose an install/activation. Such an infuriorating psuedo fun game.

I hope things improve soon.

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Spore: General / I'm having issues
« on: September 20, 2008, 09:57:47 am »
So I decided to get Spore against my better judgement on the day of release. It took a while to install and once installed it would not run. After some tinkering, it finally ran (setting admin mode and XP compatibility mode). But it still takes 3-5 tries every time I want to run it in order to get it to run. Most of the time it loads and then says something about program failure, shutting down. Other times it just hangs when the exe is 14kbs loaded. I then end process and start it over again. Most of the time I can get it to work when I shut down the EA download manager (not sure why thats loading at all in the first place) and retry it. Anyway, I'm not sure what the conflict is apart from Securom and the rest of windows. I would just like to be able to run the game first time without having to resort to admin mode and XP compat. Are there any suggestions that I might try to resolve this?

Next is the in game cinematics. EVERY time I go into an editor, progress through the game, or come back from an editor, I have to watch the cinematics. It was fine the first dozen or so times, but now its just getting irritating. Is there a way to turn that off? My esc key is getting a bit worn out and not responding as often as it did before I started playing spore.

Further, the cinematics EVERY time you die in space game is just annoying. I mean come on, you are already pissed off that you died in the first place, then you end up going to a movie? What genious thought that that was a good idea? And when you die 6 times in a 3 minute period because the enemies are insane (hard mode) it just adds fuel to the fire. I guess here my question would be, how does one fight off these big invasions effectively? I have my ship and 2 allies, but we are no match for the dozen or so enemy ships flying around. And after the allies are destroyed, they are no longer available. Perhaps it would be nice for your civilization to have their own defensive ships. I mean I'm getting invaded on all 3 of my planets simultaneously and I am only one ship. By the time I get to the third, most of the colonies and all of their defensive structures are wiped out. Now add to this that right after finishing off the last enemy and saving the day, I am invaded IMMEDIATELY because the invasion timer is reset. Needless to say, my funds are nonexistant from trying to reequip my cities and having no income due to battle.

Maybe I am just doing something wrong. And I cant get any new tech because I have no money. I should note that my colonies and economy were strong prior to the constant invasions. It would just be nice to have defensive ships to guard my colonies when I'm away or dealing with my homeworld. And maybe there are and I just havent found it yet.

Finally, is there a way to change and/or set hotkeys? I would really like to change my wasd controls in creature stage and space stage so that a and d are strafe and not turn. Thats they way I play on all of my other games with said configuration, and this messes me up to no end. I havent found any way of changing my keys, but perhaps someone else knows how. Any help on this would be appreciated. I would like to add that holding down RMB in creature stage should keep the camera locked to the mouse look, but it doesnt seem to. Moving is somewhat tedious at times in creature stage. Especially when fleeing from an attacker. Any suggestions on how to improve this? Maybe I am just doing something wrong.

All in all, Spore, in it and of itself is a fantastic game. It could have been much better, but hopefully expansions cover those bases. The creaters are good, but can be somewhat limiting. I was trying to put a leg on another leg (as shown in one of the earlier demo videos) but that functionality seems to have been taken out which is really annoying IMO. I've also been trying to bend the spine horizontally in an S shape like a snack on the ground, but that seems to be locked too. I havent tried any "cheats" or such yet, so maybe thats still possible. Could anyone verify that these are possible or not?

Thanks

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Spore: General / EA Forum Polls
« on: September 05, 2008, 06:13:17 pm »
Interestingly enough, EAs forums have a whole sub category for polls. Most notibly for the limitations on installions being removed. What is funny is that it is 100% in favor of removing the limitations. The following is the link. Please vote and let EA know what you want!

http://forums.electronicarts.co.uk/voting-booth/335168-spore-mass-effect-3-activations-limit.html

Have fun!

Edit: I should add that I am not against limited simultaneous installations and activations. I just want the ability to deactivate an installation if I decide to update hardware or get a new machine and reinstall the game. My AV software has 3 activations which I have on my 3 computers and I will deactivate one when I get a new machine and reactivate it on the new machine. It is no longer useful on the old machine, but I am still able to use the product on the new one. Anyway, I dont think that is unreasonable.

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Spore: General / Direct2Drive Version... SecuROM free?
« on: September 05, 2008, 03:39:47 pm »
I was reading some articles on gamespy.com and remembered that they are affiliated with direct2drive.com. So I figured I'd check to see if d2d will offer spore. Sure enough, they will release it at 7am on sunday. This brings up the question of whether or not their version will contain SecuROM. I cant seem to find any information specifically so I figured I would converse with the community to see if they know anything more then myself. IF d2d version is free of SecuROM, I may, once again, consider purchasing the game.

Currently I am completely miffed with the way EA is treating it's customer base (see other forum threads for details). I've just had alot of bad luck with anything product porting SecuROM and I dont think it is necessary. Especially since the game is already cracked and now SecuROM simply makes loyal customers bend over and take it in the tail pipe.

But I am getting off topic. I would just like to know if D2D will be SecuROM free or not.

Thanks

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PC Games / War Front - Turning Point
« on: July 31, 2007, 09:08:43 pm »
So I picked this up during a trip to my local best buy when my intention was to get the new Civ4 expansion BTS. I looked down and there was this new $20USD game that I had never seen before. So I thought, eh, what the heck, I'll try it out. I have to say I wasnt disappointed. It turned out to be a decent RTS with a few minor polish and balance issues. Moreover the concept of a fictional WWII is far more entertaining to me then the usual WWII games that many companies are currently over doing.

As shocked as I was at the price for a new RTS, I was even more surprised by the fact that it was released around the same time as SC and CnC3. Aparently many stores havent been able to stock it until recently.

I was wondering how many others have played this game. Please comment on what you liked and didnt like about the game.

Thanks.

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Hey everyone,

I was just wondering how others determine how much they will spend on a video game and what their motivating factors are. I, personally, have my own little system to determine how much I will actually spend on various types of video games.

Wont Bother - If a game has poor graphics and poor game play.
$10 - Older classics with dated graphics but fun gameplay.
$20 - Newer games with great graphics but poor gameplay I wont invest much in if at all.
$30 - Decent gameplay, fair graphics, newer game. Nothing extravagant but has its playability.
$40 - This slot is for those games with great graphics, great gameplay, but no multiplayer. If a game has no multiplayability, it will be tough for me to justify spending more.
$50 - The game must be top notch, Terrific graphics, solid game play, decent multiplayer and good controls.
$60 - This is a very rare category for me. I will tend to not buy games over $50 because these are usually "hype" games that will reduce in cost fairly soon and usually aren't all that they are cracked up to be. If a game was exceptionally well made and basically perfect, I might be able to justify this cost.
I wont pay anything higher.

That is a general format that I use but this is also based on genre for me as well.

<$10 - racing, flight simulator, sports, arcade - They for the most part don't interest me, but on occasion I will find one that I like.
$10-20 - FPS - I'm not a big FPS fan so I wont pay much for these if I buy them at all.
$20-30 - 3PS (third person shooters) - I may go as high as $30 because I prefer 3PS to FPS. It would still have to be a pretty terrific game if I am to concider adding it to my library.
$30-40 - RTS - RTS games are my favorite overall, but companies have been putting out some pretty halfassed RTS's in the last few years. Many balance problems, limited gameplay and multiplayer, poor controls have pushed this category down from its $50 slot which it used to have for me.
$40-50 - MMO, ES (epic strategy), RPG - MMOs are becoming lower in value to me as the monthly subscriptions have become restricting in how many MMOs I can play at one time. ES games I concider like civilization, spore, the sims, and others along those lines. RPGs are among my favorites. For me personally, Guildwars is worth $50 (maybe even $60) because it has the essence of MMO, RPG, and strategy.
$20-30 - Expansions - Most expansions are best to get as a complete package with the full game and any other expansions. A full package for a dated product would be worth around $30 to me.
$10-20 - Movie "hype" titles - These games are usually made halfassed just to make a quick buck at the expense of the consumer. There are, however, a few decent games that have been made from movie titles (ie spiderman 2 console version). Most of these aren't worth getting.

Finally different platforms hold different values to me.

$10-40 - Consoles - Consoles are mildly fun, but controls are generally what makes or breaks the game for me. I cant stand the xbox or ps2 controllers thus I have never gotten those systems. GC has a fantastic controller and generally tight controls which is the main reason I have a GC. Older systems had pretty generic controllers and games were well made for the controls.
$10-40 - Handhelds - Portability, improving graphics and decent games. I would pay higher then the standard for most of the newer handheld games. Mostly the DS as there are some really unique and fun games as well as expanded functionality with wifi and dual screens. I hope to get a DS lite when it is released, just cant afford it right now.
$10-50 - PCs - nothing beats a good PC. Mouse/Keyboard is ideal for most games as well as the high capacity storage and expandable resources. Highly customizable and useability makes the PC superior to other platforms in my view.

To recap, I concider myself a seasoned gamer with particular tastes, but I like to try and keep and open mind about games. Sadly it has been within the past 5 years or so that has made me hesitant to try new games. Companies have been coming out with games that have their pockets in mind while neglecting the end user. These being poor controls (which is a big nono in my book), poor gameplay, and/or poor balance. Graphics are my minimal requirement when determining a game, but companies have been using graphics as a driving force to sell their games. Too many games are promoted by their graphics while neglecting gameplay or playability.

Another determining factor for me is how limited the game is. Guild Wars is one of my favorite games, but it doesn't reach my most favorite because of the "boundaries" within the game (not being able to jump down a cliff or swim or fly). If this game wasn't fantastic in other aspects, I wouldn't even concider it one of my favorites. Other games (esp FPS) have limitations in the map sizes. I understand the need for these limitations, but they become repetitive and boring after a few runs. RTS maps also have these limitations which is why it is good when a company puts in a map editor and/or a random generator.

All in all, I have become skeptical when a new, great release comes out (esp starwars license games) because of the reasons above and thus is why I wont spend a dime on a game without doing extensive research into the game before considering it. Player and gaming site reviews as well as demos have helped me weed out most of the poorly made games from the high quality ones. My primary factors when deciding a game are replayability, multiplayability and controlability. If those aren't there, other aspects of the game must be perfect in order to get me to buy them. I can actually live without MP, but lack of MP goes into the limitations category stated above.

Under a personal opinion, I think what Will Wright is doing with Spore is great. Like others on this site, I think its revolutionary in the way games can be made and presented. From what I could see from the GDC 05 demo, the interface looks streamlined and easy to use, the graphics are wonderful, the gameplay is phenomenal, and the replay value is high. Lack of direct multiplayer with hurt it slightly, but in the grand scheme of the game, it will be negligible (much like the sims). I will gladly pay $50 for this game. I only fear what EA might do with it like the sims. Milk it for more then its worth until the game has become so overwhelmingly complex and expensive that the casual gamer of the series will have no desire to play it (the reasons I haven't bought the expansions for sims 2 past university).

Anyway, I have rambled long enough. Just let me (and every one else who reads this thread) know how you determine the games you buy and how much they are worth to you.

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