December 08, 2019, 07:46:44 AM

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Messages - Neveesandeh

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Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: Favorite Standalone Book
« on: November 17, 2019, 09:00:04 AM »
I'd go with Strange and Norrell, and Perdido Street Station, if the Bas Lang books count as standalones.

Non-Fantasy Books / Re: Modern and Postmodern narratives
« on: November 09, 2019, 03:51:37 PM »
An idea I've come across is that modernism is a reaction to the declining importance of religion in society, and an attempt to replace it with over ideologies (Objectivism and Communism being two examples). Postmodernism in turn is a reaction to the decline of Modernism and opposes any 'big, unifying explanation'. I think a big part of that is a response to WWII, belief in 'big explanations' was considered by postmodernists to be a major cause of the conflict.

I'd say the OP is spot on. My understanding of it was always something along those lines.

Non-Fantasy Books / Re: What is "non-genre fiction"?
« on: November 09, 2019, 03:45:35 PM »
I used to have a flatmate who pretty much refused to read any fiction less than a hundred years old. When I stumbled across some writing on the development of more mainstream or literary fiction, I started to see his point. In the twentieth century, a lot of writers began to consciously move away from what they thought was too much of an emphasis on plot, and starting writing stories that focused mostly on character, with little plot development. Because a genre is mostly defined by specific plot beats (fantasy and Sci-Fi are more defined by their settings in my opinion, but let's skip over that for now.) This had less of an effect on genre fiction than on mainstream or 'literary' fiction.

Here's the problem. It's really hard to write a book with not much plot and actually have it work, and in my opinion, most writers can't pull it off. I've read many fantasy novels of varying quality, and never have any of them been about someone sitting in a room whining to themselves for three hundred pages. A lot of mainstream fiction these days is character studies with boring characters, so I hardly ever read it, but I can read these plot heavy nineteenth century novels no problem, even if the characters are pretty flat. Mythology has some of the oldest and most enduring stories in all of history, and the characters are often two dimensional archetypes.

I'm plot trying to say plot is more important than character, in many ways I think that's a false and unhelpful dichotomy. But for me, fantasy offers more than just imaginative monsters and magic systems I can't find elsewhere. It has epic, sweeping, important feeling stories that most mainstream fiction hasn't had for almost a century.

Started playing Dishonored 2 for the first time. So far I like the game, it's a lot like the first one with some interesting improvements (although I'll probably end up liking the first one more.) Only problem is, my PS4 absolutely hates it. The fan goes berserk when I put the disc in and it crashed after I beat the first mission, though thankfully my progress was saved.

I'm actually quite scared to play it again, because I'm worried my console will burst into flames.

General Discussion / Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« on: October 31, 2019, 06:30:45 PM »
I wouldn't say I'm a hardcore democrat, in the sense that I agree wholeheartedly with Churchill's description of it as the 'worst possible system, except for all the others'.

But the greatest strength of any democracy is term limits, and there should never, in my opinion, under any circumstances, be more than two. Any leader in power for too long, regardless of how well they governed at the start, will end up both tyrannical and incompetent.

Any leader who even mentions the phrase 'third term' in passing should be instantly thrown in prison. Every time someone has managed to amend the constitution to get a third term, he's still been in power thirty years later and doing a pretty poor job of it.

For me it's more important for a system to purge bad leaders than to select good ones.

General Discussion / Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« on: October 29, 2019, 07:35:53 PM »
I feel for the eight year old boy that just wanted to be loved, but I'm afraid he's dead for a long time and now we got this thing that pretends it is a normal human being (or even a stable genius).

I would say Trump would make for a good fictional villain, except his behaviour is way too outlandish and ridiculous.

If one good thing comes out of this nightmare, it will be people finally basing their fictional evil empires on someone other than the Nazis.

Yeah, he is tough. Hits hard, hits fast, and doesn't give you much openings. I think I played through the game four or five times now, but when I wanted to farm sunlight medals through co-op support, he was usually the boss where you got summoned the quickest, so I probably have fought him 20 or 30 times now. And a shield is just amazing.  ;D

The one boss that I never defeated by myself is the one in the big hidden area. Even with 3 player co-op that one took me a lot of tries. I have no idea how people beat him alone.

The Princes were also really tough when I first encountered them, but once you have them figured out you actually can very well dance around them. This really is one of the things that make all the games so utterly fascinating. You can work your ass for hours and dozens of tries the first time you play the game.
Iudex Gundyr was really tough the first time. Now I start a new game and easily kill him before he can even transform into his second phase.

There is always a temptation to think "the thing I just did avoided getting hit and dealt a bit of damage to the boss. If I can repeat this perfectly for 5 minutes without break, I can beat him." And then you try and try and try until you nail it. But then later you see videos of someone using fire or lightning damage instead and killing the boss with four hits in under 10 seconds. But it just never occured to you that you might be using a really weak attack form.

To be honest, I find the idea of repeating the same reasonably active attack until the boss is dead more fun than applying lots of buffs and one or two hitting it. I like these games to be a challenge. I see videos of speedrunners and people who win first time every time and I can't help but think they've ruined the game for themselves a little.

There's one boss notorious for dying in one hit, and when I killed it, I actually felt kind of guilty. There it was, standing there, doing nothing to hurt anyone, and then some guy just drops out of the sky and sticks a sword in its head. It made me feel like an elephant poacher.

I always found Iundex Gundyr easy, but I had no idea he could be killed before he got to phase two. That's amazing.

General Discussion / Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« on: October 24, 2019, 08:36:27 PM »
I just found an article in The Independent about a businessman in China who hired a hitman to kill a business rival. The hitman then hired another hitman to do the job for him. This hitman then went on to hire another hitman. This went on until the fifth hitman was hired, who then approached the man he'd been hired to kill and offered to help him fake his own death. In the end no one died and they all got caught.

When you have a shield and the discipline to keep is raised when he can make a tail swipe, Oceiros can't really hurt you.

It also works really well with the Dancer, the Pontiff, and the Prince. They can only hurt you when you let them hurt you.

Crystal Sage I found very easy, but that was because I had played through Demon's Souls and Dark Souls before.
Spoiler for Hiden:
It's the same fight as Fool's Idol and Pinwheel.

I actually had to look up a guide for the sage. It is similar to pinwheel, but unlike pinwheel, the clones actually try to attack you. Once you work out which is the real boss and just focus on that it's pretty manageable though.

Spoiler for Hiden:
Pontiff was the boss I was ranting about earlier. I'm on the Twin Princes now and I have yet to find a fight as hard as the pontiff. He's as relentless as a Bloodborne boss, but much harder to dodge, and that five hit combo destroys me every time unless I have enough space and stamina to run away. He's the only boss I had to summon for, and as far as I'm concerned, continues the trend of putting the hardest boss in the middle rather than at the end that began with the O&S fight, another one I could only beat by summoning, and even then it took me about thirty tries.

There are a couple of bosses that can be killed quite easily if you figure out their trick early and you happen to avoid them using their strongest attack. Crystal Sages, the Deacons, and Wolnir come to mind.
But then there's also the fast duel bosses who zip all over the place where it's all about constant dodging and blocking. For replays, those are the really fun ones, but the first time they can be really tough cookies.

Too my suprise I got bored of Horizon and returned to Skyrim. After 8 years, I am finally really enjoying Skyrim for what it is.

I actually struggled with the Crystal Sage and the Deacons. Wolnir was just as pathetic as everyone said he would be though. Oceiros was unbelievably easy. I found him with three or four estus left and still beat him on my first try. I felt kind of guilty about it actually, like I'd just mugged an old man.

Fantasy Movies, Comic Books & Video Games / Re: Anime Favorites
« on: October 22, 2019, 04:48:12 PM »
Netflix doesn't have Jojo's for some adventurously bizarre reason, so I've been watching 'Tokyo Ghoul' I'm enjoying it so far, but I wish there was an option to view it subbed instead of dubbed. The dub isn't bad, but I prefer to view things in the original language.

Well, the new controller certainly works well. I beat three DS3 bosses today, one on my second try and another on my first try. I'm well into the second half of the main game and I am feeling so smug right now.

I'll probably be stuck at the boss I'm on now for a month.

Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: Magic vs Technology
« on: October 20, 2019, 03:50:32 PM »
I don't really see why so many see the 'vs' aspect of this. To my mind, magic and technology are best when they do very different things. If you want to kill a bandit, you grab a sword. if you want to see the future, you visit a prophet. or at least, that's the way I tend to handle things. Neither one is better than the other, because they're not competing in the same fields.

It's a variation of Science vs Religion theme.

Sort of. Depends on how you handle it. It could be a sort of Romanticism vs Enlightenment theme as well. Magic could stand for backwards superstition or chivalrous values, depending on how you frame it.

But I like the idea of a magic vs technology conflict because in most settings magic is only available to a select group born with magical powers. Technology isn't available to everyone, but everyone can, in theory, obtain it. It that way, technology is more likely to enforce equality, or at least equality of opportunity, and magic hierarchy, in particular a hereditary hierarchy.

General Discussion / Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« on: October 18, 2019, 08:51:38 AM »
According to some sources, Erdogan responded by chucking it straight in the bin.

General Discussion / Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« on: October 17, 2019, 11:40:06 AM »
Looking at Trump's statements on Syria and Turkey, I have to wonder, is he okay? I mean, he's always been rambling and incoherent, but before it seemed more like an act to make him more relatable to his voter base. Now, his latest statements make it look like he has barely any idea of what he's saying. It's like he's changing his mind every minute.

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