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Topics - Pinstar

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Console Games / Harvest Moon: Tree of Tranquility
« on: October 07, 2008, 03:18:19 pm »
The newest in the Harvest Moon series now out on the Wii.

Gamespot gave this game a 6.0

Now, as much as overinflated scores irk me, I didn't realize how bad understated scores are by comparison.
If you are a fan of the Harvest Moon series like I am, this game has that core gamplay feel that made the earlier titles in the series the guilty pleasures that they were.

If you are a fan of the Harvest Moon series, and you happen to own a Wii, I would reccomend buying this.

That being said, it is not without a few flaws.

1. Loading screens. It reminds me of the PS1 days where you have about a 3-4 second load between areas. A little annoying, but not a game-breaker.
2. Frame Rates. The frame rate can slow down a bit when it rains. Again, not unplayably so, just slightly annoying.
3. Camera Angle. On the upside you don't have to wrangle with a camera. On the downside, this is because you can't. It is pretty much a fixed angle everywhere you go. Granted, most areas are designed with this in mind and you can navigate pretty well, but sometimes you just want to shift it over or zoom out a bit to see a larger area. Like the first two, a bit annoying but nothing game breaking.

These three items combines are not enough to sour my enjoyment of the game. There are enough new characters, animals, mechanics, jobs, and storyline items to more than make up for these three flaws.

In short, don't get scared off by the 6.0 gamespot score. The average user score (8.4 at the time of this post) is much more accurate to the game's true enjoyment factor.

Spore: General / Epic kill in creature stage; no acheivement awarded
« on: September 11, 2008, 08:36:15 pm »

Not sure if this is a bug or what. The epic in question is "Mr. Pip"

Spore: General / What actions lead to what traits.
« on: September 09, 2008, 02:46:49 pm »
Both a guide and a question. I would like to share the traits I have found, and also ask what combination of actions produces the other traits.

I have gotten the following traits:



(started new space game from main menu)

Bard (This was tough, had to change history row with each stage)

I'm curious to see if anyone else has 'naturally' gotten the other talents, and what categories you were in prior to get that trait.

Spore: General / Possible issue installing on some brands of DVD-RWs
« on: September 03, 2008, 03:14:23 pm »
I'm a Sims geek, and to help bide my time before I could get my paws on Spore, I picked up the latest (and possibly last) Expansion pack for The Sims 2 "Apartment Life"

The problem was, I couldn't install it. Not right away anyway.
When I inserted the DVD, the disk would not recognize wouldn't spin up, no autorun. Even clicking on my DVD-RW drive would give me a "please insert disk" message.

Yet this same DVD-RW drive would play and install other games, even DVD rom games like the PC version of Mass Effect.

The ONLY other thing it couldn't handle well was actual DVD movies. I could not play DVD movies on my computer for some reason. It never really bothered me because I own a normal DVD player.

The point of this whole thing was that I ended up having to buy a new drive. I purchased this drive:

After hooking the drive, I was able to install my game just fine.

Why am I babbling on about this on the Spore forum? Because The Sims 2: Apartment Life and Spore are coming out within several weeks of each other, by the same company. To infer that they are being encoded the same exact way would not be too long of a leap. That being said, I know I would commit several human rights violations if I found that my computer couldn't play Spore the day I got it, so I wanted to give everyone else a heads up.

If you think your drive might be like my old one, either swap it, or go for the digital download.

Spore: Sporepedia Exchange / Creatures for profit.
« on: August 02, 2008, 07:22:44 am »
Many creatures are made with the purpose that they will eventually gain intelligence and rise up to be a major galactic power... but not all of them.

There are some creatures that remain just that, creatures.

That doesn't mean they are not without use to the highly advanced races.

With the development of the interstellar economy and the trade between different systems, there has emerged a new class of creature that has had the fortune, or misfortune, of being very very profitable.

This thread is to highlight the galaxy's most profitable creatures.

I'll start us off with two creatures.

CreatureCreator's Skitter

Leveraging its cuteness, this small cute package is big bucks in the galactic pet trade, leading to a new line of pet shop, specializing in the trade of the adorable little bundle.

The second is the Terralyte

Being labeled as one of the fastest creatures in the Western wing of the galaxy, the sport of Teralyte racing has become big bucks. Having a successful Teralyte can make you a fair amount of credits. Knowing who has the fastest Teralytes and betting on them will net you even more. While most Teralyte racing is legal, several illegal 'private' racing rings have cropped up, mostly to avoid the taxes on gambling wins levied on legal racing.

A second market has also developed for the swift creatures.
Young, swift and strong Teralytes make horrible pets. They have almost limitless energy, making them very destructive if not given a chance to expend that energy. Older Teralytes, having spent their energy on the racetrack, are calm enough to make good pets.

What other creatures make for big business? Post them here and what sort of footprint they leave on the galactic economy!

Forum Games / Name that game quote!
« on: July 04, 2008, 05:46:45 pm »
Here is how its played. I will put out a gaming quote. It can be from any game on any system, but it has to be a GAME, not a movie or song.

The first person to get the game right will then follow up and post a random game quote of their own. And so on and so forth.

So let me start things off with thise one:

"And, my friends, when it comes to mysteries, those panties are the promised land!"

Spore: General / DNA "cost"
« on: June 21, 2008, 10:37:40 am »
So with the creature creator in our hands, we all know the exact DNA cost of every item.

Thats all well and good, but it did not answer a deeper question about DNA costs. In the grand scope of things, how much *is* 2000 DNA?

My thesis is that as far as DNA goes, you'll be counting every point. Here are my reasons:

1. It is almost impossible to spend all 2,000 DNA points without hitting the complexity cap in the CC. This leads me to believe that the CC was designed to be a 'sandbox' tool, where cost is not an issue when designing your creature. Therefore, 2,000 points is an extreme high mark for a DNA budget.

2. Higher 'ranks' of creature parts that look similar, have similar stats boosted but give a strictly greater boost cost only 10-20 DNA points more then their lower 'ranked' counterparts. The only time you would ever want to use the lower ranked parts (from a strictly min/max perspective) would be if you could not afford the higher ranked ones (and/or haven't unlocked them yet). In order for that 10-20 DNA jump in cost to make the decision something that could go either way, each of those 10-20 DNA points must take some effort to earn.

I'm thinking that earning 1 DNA point in Spore would be like earning 1 gold in World of Warcraft. In the very beginning, it takes awhile just to get 1 point, and a purchase of 20 points is a major investment, but once you get to higher 'levels' with higher tier parts on your creature, going against/avoiding higher tier creatures and completing more complex missions, it'll become easier and easier to get DNA points. The end game for creature, of course, will be buying bigger brains which will allow you to go to tribal. I'm guessing the highest level of brain will be the most expensive part in the game.

Of course, this is all just speculation. If anyone has any hard facts, articles, screen shots or other theories that either support or contradict this theory of mine, please post it!

Spore: General / Two words: Spore Machinima
« on: June 18, 2008, 05:09:55 pm »
Imagine the possibilities once we have the full game. People already make some GREAT Machinima using less 'open' game engines/settings. Imagine what one could do with Spore...

Spore: General / Quality vs. Quantity
« on: June 17, 2008, 01:10:22 pm »
I've been seeing quite a few creatures on the sporeapedia. Many of them are sheer works of art, complete with lovingly placed and molded detail parts and a well written bio to boot.
I've also seen tons of creatures that look "meh" and have no descriptions.

While the Spore CC is designed so that anybody could throw a creature together in 5 minutes, do you think one should?

On one hand, the more creatures you have out there, the more of a chance that one of them is going to be sumbled upon, liked and shared. On the other hand, waiting for the right inspiration, taking the time to make sure every single part is positioned *just right* that you pick out *just* the right shade of blue, that the thickness of the calf is *just* right then topping it off with a creative bio will make for a higher quality creature, but you won't have as many out there if you take that much time and effort to make each creature.

So I guess my questions are:
Do you go for the quality or quantity?
Do you think the sporeapedia has the framework to allow truly good creatures to rise to the top?

Spore: General / CC no longer working
« on: June 17, 2008, 05:18:22 am »
So I get up this morning to fire up my trial CC hoping that the database will be unlocked so I can upload my works. I fire up the game, it gets to the ESRB screen...then suddenly closes itself and drops me back to the desktop. No error message, no crash message, no nothing, just pops back to the desktop and closes. It does this every single time. I've even tried uninstalling and reinstalling it and to no avail.

Anyone else get this? Anyone have any idea on how to fix it?

Spore: Sporepedia Exchange / Pinstar's Petting Zoo
« on: June 15, 2008, 05:53:38 am »
I've condensed my petting zoo to cut out the clutter.

Please check out all my creations in detail at
Ratings and feedback are ALWAYS appreciated, and will be returned in kind  ^_^

I'll start with my signature creature, the Teralyte

Here is the rest.

Spore: General / 2 people, 1 copy of Spore
« on: May 11, 2008, 07:32:39 pm »
I was reading this headline on the GS front page, and came across two interesting bullet points.

# The new system means you don't have to play with the disc in your computer. And if you are like me, always losing discs, this will be a huge benefit.
# You'll still be able to install and play on multiple computers.

Now my fiance and I have two separate computers side by side. We both connect to the internet through a router (so same IP address).

Would we be able to get away with purchasing only one copy of spore?

By the sounds of it we could install one game on each other's systems and both get updates through one spore account.

But maybe I don't fully understand the system (or maybe this is plain illegal)

What do you all think?

Everything Else / Ikariam
« on: May 02, 2008, 07:49:01 pm »
So with Steve talking about browser based games I couldn't help but perk my ears when another podcast I listen to, Control point mentioned a web-based browser game called Ikariam.

Basically its like a city building, island empire sim-type game. The other nifty thing is your ability to ally with and trade resources with another player.

Check it out at
randonazz: Monstrum Novus [30:53] Rehios: Vineyard

Caerbannog (Masterchitoes): Caero [71:70] Rishuos: Vineyard

We also have an alliance! Name: Gaming Steve Tag: G S

If you want join the alliance, here is a little guide on how to do so:

Want a little mini-guide? Try the wiki

I'm on the Eplsilon server. City name is Pinstar
I've only just started, and you need a few techs to start trading, but perhaps we could start up a gaming steve alliance.

Here is a list of everyone from Gaming Steve playing:

Forum Name(Game Name)Town NameLocationResource
762(Rook218)Georgia[68:38]Sulfur Pit
Andrew RyanRapture[39:81]Vineyard
Blitzonator(ninteen45)Scizeel[44:56]Crystal Mine
BrandonazzMonstrum Novus[30:53]Vineyard
Celdurthat one place[28:35]Quarry
CeldurNothing here[30:37]Vineyard
Celdurthe other place[27:39]Sulfur Pit
Cobra(Cobraven)Explodium[29:38]Sulfur Pit
Cobra(Cobraven)Shard[30:36]Crystal Mine
DideroDideropolis[50:73]Crystal Mine
DideroDideros Winery[51:74]Vineyard
DoctorZKationa[70:67]Crystal Mine
Great DistanceFar Away[78:43]Sulfur Pit
Great DistanceWorlds Apart[78:44]Vineyard
HenqixPizzapolis[56:82]Crystal Mine
jbobpokepark_crys[30:41]Crystal Mine
KaizerMedic Haus[76:44]Vineyard
Krakow SamCherovka[38:34]Vineyard
Mr. Wizard(Master_Wizard)Fikriyya[61:58]Sulfur Pit
Mr. Wizard(Master_Wizard)Calferay[71:70]Vineyard
MasterChiToes(Caerbannog)Caerville[70:67]Crystal Mine
MasterChiToes(Caerbannog)West Caeropolis[68:69]Quarry
Met(Metnik)Big Whiskey[45:82]Crystal Mine
Mr. ConsiderationConsideria[75:42]Sulfur Pit
neoadeptHaldora[77:60]Sulfur Pit
neoadeptThe Way Station[66:56]Quarry
PatMan33PatCon I[30:38]Quarry
PatMan33PatCon II[29:37]Crystal Mine
PatMan33PatCon III[30:37]Vineyard
PinstarPinstar[61:40]Crystal Mine
TomasgaquinoTomania[33:27]Crystal Mine
TomasgaquinoTomsville[33:26]Sulfur Pit
YannickFlargin[49:31]Sulfur Pit
YuuLuminopolis[81:48]Crystal Mine

Everything Else / So I'm lookin for a new car...
« on: May 01, 2008, 06:21:42 pm »
because gas prices are killing me and I want to trade in my Volvo while it still has a fair amount of value (and before the repair bills start creeping up).

I'm looking at the Honda Civic... that 40/45 MPG definitely looks better on the gas budget.

Does anyone own a Honda Civic, or know much about the Hybrid's reliability, pros/cons?

Books / Cheap Audiobooks?
« on: April 19, 2008, 11:17:21 am »
Anyone know some good and cheap audiobooks out there? The ones on Itunes are way too pricy, but I love listning to them during my commute on my Ipod. Any suggestions?

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