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Withywarlock

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Withywarlock last won the day on September 9

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  1. @Crazycrab's tone aside, their message is sadly correct. Leakers don't have the full context for the content they're leaking, and what may have been true at the time can easily change moments later due to the sheer complexity of development. This is assuming they're telling the truth, and recently we've seen a huge debacle over an 'industry insider' being a regular Johnny Youtuber. I'm not going to doubt this Dusk fellow any more than I would other leakers, but the trust I place in them - however correct their past claims have been - is little to begin with. I'm disappointed for you and all the Silent Hill fans eagerly awaiting a new game, but my sympathy can only extend so far when that eagerness is hedged on hearsay and dubious screenshots/video footage. The times have changed so dramatically, where even hands-on gameplay days before release can be totally unrepresentative of what the final product is, so it's hard for me to say "until [x], [y], and [z] happens you should be cautious."
  2. I completely understand where you're coming from, but I'm the sort of person who wants proof it builds the forum (which I don't think even DC can provide because how does one measure such a thing?) and I also don't think people need to be rewarded for posting. Posting should be its own reward. Don't get me wrong, I love internet points. I frequented r/fatlogic as the Reddit karma was intoxicating, but it wasn't a requirement for my continued contribution. But if Reddit were to disappear I'd happily find another forum helping people debunk fat activist rhetoric and myths about obesity. I initially joined this forum not for points, but to lend my experience as a recently former games journalist and an interest in the industry. It has been rather rewarding engaging in discussion and trying to probe beyond the surface of the topics presented. I 100% agree. If the system is to remain it must be reworked. As of right now the only immediate answer I can think of, until we each get more ideas to bounce off one another, is to totally reset points. Have some silly prizes to spend them on, maybe some sort of "Veteran Member" or "Goldmember" badge for underneath your profile picture before they disappear, and we can start again.
  3. I think this only further increases the wealth gap we've both noticed, and also encourages bad forum etiqutte. I've talked at length about the low-effort posts on this forum and the clear reasoning behind why it happens. I still stand by the removal of points and prizes entirely, but until that time comes I'd rather we have something that encourages good conduct. Your idea of referrals is a good one (with the caveat that the points are only rewarded after the referred person has made a significant enough contribution to the forum). Perhaps re-limiting the amount of reacts given per day and rewarding those whose content is positively reacted toward? Might be an idea for prizes where only those below a certain figure can spend points, or things that cost less. I like Steam's way of doing its Points shop: you can buy profile picture borders, mini-profile backgrounds which are animated, and so on. Could be a nice idea to be able to buy cheap forum themes: a Halloween theme, a Christmas theme, showing avatars with jack-o'-lantern borders or Santa hats, with the VGR logo at the top caked in snow and fairy lights. Seeing as there's rarely any prizes I want I tend to amass a ton of points, so more customisation for the forum would be grand.
  4. It's always been that way. The 'bedroom programming' of the late 80s/early 90s remains impressive but is heavily romanticised especially when brought up during a controversy in today's gaming. It's easy to forget how arcade machines traded artistic integrity to gobble up people's quarters. Home console adaptations of arcade games were similar: a very short and punishing game that only has a long lifespan due to the fact that it's so hard to reach the end. Not to mention the video game crash of 1983, a catastrophic event which - thankfully (and bizarrely) - has not yet been met in games history. We can rightly point to big publishers, but it's too easy to single out three (who, in my opinion, don't register anywhere near as awful as Tencent and Konami) and call it a day. What makes them worse than they were a decade ago? Who has improved, who has surpassed them as worse? Gaming's rogues' gallery is a lot more visibly complicated now than at least a decade ago. Agreed. The implementation of online components is a double-edged sword, allowing convenience for both makers and consumers of video games. We can buy, collect and play games easier than ever before... and we can also get them patched just as quickly if the developer(-to-publisher relationship) is so inclined. Which of the two below is more desirable? We go back to the days of games unable to be patched through launchers, requiring them to be fixed through dialling up a bulletin-board system (BBS), having them delivered by snail mail, or waiting for mods/expansion packs to introduce bug fixes? That's if the developer can afford $40,000 to update it. This would however mean that some games may never release because delays are not enough as the project is too much for the developers for whatever reason (financial, competence, time constraints, all of the above), and will not be officially fixed. We stick to what we have? I prefer option 2 because consumers are as informed as we choose to be. Previews, reviews, interviews are available from all manner of sources depending on your preference, discounts are more frequent and consistent than have ever before been in the industry, and refund policies are constantly improving as we usher in a potential all-digital age. Most of all patience has and always will be free, and we have enough games in existence to play whilst we wait. This isn't to excuse broken releases but there's enough people out there with modding experience, enough money going around for safe bet games (ironically they're the ones that frequently and indefensively have issues...) and again enough information to just wait for someone to fix it. If the game doesn't have someone who is enthusiastic about it being fixed, it probably wasn't worth the ire about it being broken in the first place. Until we collectively get our acts together, patience is the only solution and we ought to use it while we still have mod access and clasps on our wallets. Agreed. Games journalism, if it could be called that, was horrendous when it first started out. I'd call it laughably corrupt if I had proof of said corruption; the consistently glowing reviews in magazines were suspicious and in my opinion clearly made as marketing material rather than serving their readership well. Since Jeff Gerstmann's firing from Gamespot, publishers walk on eggshells to curry favour with expensive review camp events and other exclusive goodies. I won't get into the independent versus mainstream, both have their merits, demerits, romanticising and demonising. I will however say that it's going to be an uphill battle to continue uncovering mistakes: from the beginning the industry did a very good job of not only controlling the message, but creating it. There needs to be a lot less cloak and dagger, and I think the first thing we can do about that is not abusing developers and publishers because they're not giving out release dates. More needs to be done besides parroting press releases, and since the Totalbiscuit passed away few seem to have a clue on how to do that.
  5. I think it's more that the focus has shifted from chasing graphical fidelity to chasing other trends, probably because there's more to marketing a game now than high resolution screenshots like touting hours of content, monetisation means, and other not-unique unique selling points (USP). There's still a lot of homogenous dross in the so-called AAA space, and when they choose to spend as much as they do it's only natural they try to make that money back by playing it safe. I don't want to suddenly turn this into an indie reverence circlejerk but the indie scene has blown up considerably. It's done well to shake off the reputation of being just faux-16bit platform games with attempts at tugging at one's heartstrings. Now there's a lot of fun ideas being developed, and there's much more empowerment to put those ideas out there even if they're not particularly well executed. Allowing anyone to use an engine like Unreal or Unity, no longer having to rely on a limited selection such as Quake, Source, or RPGMaker, is a huge plus for aspiring game developers. There's resounding celebration for middle-shelf games from the likes of Spiders, one of my favourite studios. I put this down to people missing rough edges and jankiness minus the game being broken. With how middle-shelf games are turning up, the terms 'Indie,' 'AA,' and 'AAA' ought to be revised. I won't say the industry has improved, but the communication of its faults has, if only slightly. We're now far more aware of wrongdoing with crunch culture, tax avoidance, sexual misconduct and more. It's a given these things were happening a decade ago but we at least know about it now so people can be better advised and aware of what our money gets us, stress casualties and all. I can't say that gaming is better for me or the people producing our games, but at least we know with certainty where it can improve.
  6. I managed to ignore it, but still it does nothing for first impressions. All of them, I can only guess it's the recipe and the process used to create the powder rather than any particular flavour. I don't get it so much now but they still leave me wanting more water afterwards.
  7. I would first of all ask how your ADHD is affected - if at all - by caffiene consumption. As someone who also has ADD, SNEAK does help me with focus more than tea or coffee but it has limited efficiency and the packaging recommends against consuming more than 2 servings per day. My days of bouncing off the walls from caffiene consumption are over but that's because I used to live off Coca-Cola for over a decade. If you feel it's safe to consume though, I'd recommend the cheapest options: there's a random one and there's one where you can choose a number of flavours, and get a shaker.
  8. Not really, but some flavours do have a chalky after-feeling, which then requires you drink more to wash it away. Surprisingly I've not noticed that feeling much with this batch compared to when SNEAK first came out. Nope, no crash but then I am used to energy drinks and brown sodas. I'm completely desensitised to the effects of caffiene and sugar, and because this stuff isn't hugely available in local shops, its marketing will be geared towards people looking for it such as those already consuming energy drinks. It can be used before a workout but that's not its purpose. It gave me enough of a buzz to push on a little further in terms of mental motivation, but it's not going to promote muscle growth any more than a cup of coffee or a multivitamin will. It's purely meant and marketed towards people who play video games, and it's supposed to last 45 minutes thereabouts. Nope. I wish they did a caffiene free version because as I said in my review its greatest strength, bordering on its only strength, is adding some nice flavours to water. But if I'm only allowed two a day and it means I keep rushing to the toilet because of it, I'd rather just stick to plain water and drink them when I'm not busy... like playing a video game. I'd like a decaff version just because the flavour is vastly better than its energetic properties, but I suppose you can always dilute one sachet by pouring it into 700ml of water or more if you've got a bigger bottle.
  9. The Age of Decadence is a really interesting choice for this category. It's true you can beat the entire game without killing people... but it requires a lot of save-scumming because you can easily reach the point of no return. The game is often criticised for being short, but it has to be in order for you to reload a save where you can spend your skill points optimally in order to beat the game. Unlike the frequent criticisms levelled at Dishonored about one being "punished" for using all the cool tools, this game really does punish you by halting all progress if you make the incorrect skill choice. TAoD explicitly states that its combat heavily favours enemies. You can still win but a lot of it depends on luck, and there's few build guides out there that work consistently well. An interesting dilemma. I've not played the game so I don't know its execution of the concept, but I imagine for Sniper Elite 5 to be able to excuse not killing the Nazis it would have to feature significantly greater reward for targeting the greater evil. For example, I like the idea of shooting an officer and seeing the French Resistance hungrily surrounding their surrendering oppressors. But then, can you satisfy both me and the players who want to shoot the officer and the soldiers under their command? It'd be a tough balance to achieve, and I don't think Sniper Elite has a great enough audience to demand such elaborate ideas. I forgot to comment to your first post here about Dishonored. Let's just say that a non-lethal route, while it reduces chaos, can still have haunting results. I recommend it.
  10. It really is meant for gaming, and only the mental side rather than any physical benefits. It gave me more drive when I had it at the gym, but it's the weakest pre-workout programme you could possibly take besides water. Even so, water is the best energy drink you could have because it gives consistent performance increase, rather than the ups-and-downs of energy drinks loaded with sugar and caffiene, and is the most hydrating substance on the planet. SNEAK gives me fewer jitters than other energy drinks, but clean drinking water, moderate exercise and a balanced diet are far more useful (energy drinks are typically recommended as a supplement to those, not a replacement). Failing that, it's an alternative to the amount of energy drinks out there loaded with sugar and glucose. As safe as drinking up to (but not exceeding) 300g of caffiene each day is from other sources such as tea, coffee or other energy drinks, the usual disclaimers applying to pregnant women and persons sensitive to caffiene. If you've any doubts, stick to water. The marketing goes out of its way to sell itself. There are artificial sweeteners, yes. Too many in my opinion; the ingredients and colours are natural, and taste fine, but the sweeteners can make or break the flavour. I recommend drinking them with 700ml of water rather than the 300-400ml they recommend. I wouldn't recommend energy drinks for fatigue, I only suggest them for a short-term boost. Exercise, a balanced diet, practicing safe sleep hygiene and plenty of fluids are what I recommend where possible. SNEAK, or indeed any other energy drink, is a supplement, not a replacement, to those things. I get it can be hard to achieve all of that for reasons outside of your control but energy drinks are not a viable long-term answer, sugar-reduced or not.
  11. Nope. My UTech Venus Smart is a cheapo gaming mouse and is considerably more durable than a Razer Naga(?) that I paid about £90 for. Same buttons, no real difference in sensitivity and accuracy, and it lights up nicely. I've used tons of office mice in my time and they remain fine, at least until my ordered gaming mouse arrives in the mail. More often than not its the person behind it doing the work, not the mouse itself.
  12. The site says about 10 minutes, and the effects last 45 minutes. I'd say that's about right. Monster Energy typically has 86mg per serving, G-Fuel has 140-50g per serving, and Red Bull... it depends on the size of the can. So Sneak's fairly high up, but it's within a healthy adult's recommended daily allowance of 300g. I was about to say 'yes' and leave it there but on the Blue Raspberry tub's nutrition table it does say "Carbohydrates, of which sugars: per 300ml serving, 0.5g," so it does contain some sugar. Good question, glad you asked that as it has me do my due dilligence. Regarding carbonatation and fizziness, there isn't any. It's completely flat. As for speed of consumption it depends on the flavour and how much water you add; the more you dilute it, the easier it is to chug, as mentioned in my review. Not that I can tell, it only smells like it in the packet. Thankfully it doesn't taste like raw sewage, again it only smells like it when added to water. It's just a very sour flavour.
  13. Full disclosure: I had purchased this bundle with 1,000 points from my VGR points balance, earned with creating threads and posting on existing threads. No money or favours were exchanged for this bundle. I have not received any points for the SNEAK Elite programme for this. I was offered to choose the flavour I would receive in the tub. I have experience with SNEAK (and I am going to capitalise every instance of SNEAK because it's too late to stop now) products, and this will compare to past experiences. Reviewing drinks is not my forte. This disclosure is not part of the minimum required 250 word count. The package that was sent to me, in a well-filled with packing paper box of their own branding consists of the following: one Bit Friday shaker; one tub of Blue Raspberry powder (40 servings); and five sachets of Neon Punch, Stealth, Strawberry Millions, and Strawberry Watermelon flavour powders. This would ordinarily cost £70.20 and there's currently an offer where each order contains five Strawberry Watermelon sachets. Each flavour has been taste-tested and consumed fully in 700ml of cool tap water (the recommended amount of 300-400ml is too sweet for me). Bit Friday Shaker: The Bit Friday Shaker is a tinted, ~80% transparent bottle with an ice catcher should you wish to shake it with ice. It doesn't feel quite as sturdy as the "OG Shaker", but not so fragile that it can't survive anywhere near as many solid drops on hard surfaces. Both are plastic (metal is available at an expected premium), and feature measurements on the side up to 700 millilitres (ml) and 25 ounces (oz). While I do like the transparency to see on the outside how much water you've got left in, it doesn't make the contents look particularly appetising, the tint making the water look murky. Even after being washed out it looks like droplets of mud line the inside. The stopper on the lid isn't as strong as the OG Shaker, as shown by how easily it leaks from all sides of the lid at any slightly tilted angle. It fails its job as a shaker, as when it is shaken water goes everywhere. I had originally criticised the OG Shaker for being too hard to open but it's become a positive in this context. The aesthetic is generally pleasing. The faux 16-bit SNEAK logo and SNEAK bunny evoke images of Hotline Miami and play nicely into its pop-culture marketing. Do you like slurping people? Blue Raspberry: I'll first of all comment on the tub and say that it's very secure with long neck and threading, as well as a thick foil lid. It contains 400 grams (g) of powder, which amounts to 40 10g servings, which at approximately £39.95 is one serving per £1 spent. It also comes with a little spoon to pour in a single serving... somewhere, I had to do some digging for it. Given the fineness of the powder I didn't expect to find it at the top. Blue Raspberry is a generic raspberry-flavoured drink, and tastes much better in its carbonated can form than a powder as that reminded me of energy drink Red Devil, which I can't find anywhere else. It's not as tart as other Sneak flavours (bearing in mind, again, I drink these at 700ml and not the advised 300-400ml) and that works for me. It also has less of the chalky after-effect that Sneak has been widely noted and criticised for. It passes my 'gulp' test, which is four large gulps rather than my usual sipping, as it doesn't overwhelm the tastebuds and doesn't make me feel nauseous or dehydrated afterwards. It also passes my sampling test, wherein I hold it and swill it around the gums for six seconds; again, no battered taste-buds and no dry throat afterwards. Neon Punch: A 10g satchet that strangely doesn't last as long as the plastic tub (these will last until September 2022, meanwhile the tub is fine until 2024), but it seems secure enough. I have had expired sachets before and they seemed fine, but you'd best be safe than sorry. Also don't consume more than two of these per day. This sachet is filled with pear and guava flavour, far more pear than guava. Not exactly the Tropikilla, but a refreshing fruity drink that doesn't overpower the senses in either the gulp or sample test. Stealth: "The mystery flavour. No, we're not telling you what it is," says the webpage. This is something I don't particularly like about SNEAK: if the flavour's name doesn't give it away, nothing else will. The amount of threads I've seen people asking "what flavour is [x]" tells me others have the same problem, and I'm reminded of how glad I am to have received these for free. Moving on, Stealth smells different depending on what it's in. In the sachet it has a strong liquorice smell. I don't like liquorice. When poured into the water and shaken it smelt of raw sewage. I don't like raw sewage either, but I'd probably take that over liquorice. Dreading what it must taste like I put it to my lips and found it tastes of neither. It's quite pleasant, but it's very tart. It's an artificial sour flavour that has enough sweetness to not turn me off it entirely. Easily the strongest flavour I've tried of theirs without feeling the urge to throw up (see below). It's nice but it definitely needed to be in 700ml of water, and does not survive the gulp or sampling test. Like the Strawberry Millions next, it needs to be sipped to be enjoyed fully. I don't know why this one was discontinued from the UK, but I'm going to save these for special occasions as a result of that. I'm rather glad I got these instead of my Grape Punch. Strawberry Millions: I must admit I did buy this one partly for its marketing material. It's an attractive packet in that neon aesthetic, a nice change from the street art SNEAK normally go for. Because I've got five of these I'm going to use them more sparingly than not; the dessert to my dinner. It tastes like Strawberry Millions, go figure, but is still rather tart in 700ml of water. It doesn't pass my gulp or sample test, making it much better to savour with small sips. On a side note, I strongly discourage trying the Bubblegum Millions flavour. When I say it's a bad flavour I don't just mean that I dislike it; I'm not a fan of the next flavour but I can at least drink it. Bubblegum Millions tasted exactly as it should, albeit revolting as a drink. I can eat them, I can eat bubblegum lollipops, but I cannot drink bubblegum-flavoured water. It made me sick to my stomach and I had to keep adding water just to finish it. Their mixologists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should. Strawberry Watermelon: Last but not least, the sachet that can't be torn open. For some reason these required scissors as there was nowhere to tear it. This one tastes absolutely as advertised: the strawberry and watermelon flavours alternate with each sip, and even if I'm not fond of eating watermelon it makes for a refreshing drink. With its creamy texture it could be mistaken for juice more than a squash or flavoured water. It passes my gulp test as there's no chalky after-texture, though there is some cloying at the back of my throat which requires another swig to wash it down. The sample test of swilling the gums fails however as it's far too sweet, but at least the bitter feeling it leaves on my teeth washes away quickly. I can easily see this one being my favourite served with ice. How is it as an energy drink? SNEAK Energy is marketed toward trendy young people who wear hoodies and know what 'no cap' means. I'm none of those things. I'm an obese Englishman who would indeed have 'no cap' in a real game of Capture the Flag. That, I believe, is 'no cap'. But does it give me the energy to capture the flag, real or virtual? Not really, no. I will say that I do feel more alert and have a buzz from a single bottle of water laced with SNEAK, but it doesn't make my performance in games measurably better. My awareness has improved but my reflexes see virtually no difference at all, and while I'm more focussed I feel that's because of the water more than the caffeine. Bearing in mind I already drink Diet Coke by default, so having the jolt of energy from changing my drinking habits is more thanks to Yorkshire Water than the ctf_2fort marching powder. The marketing has more energy than the drink itself. It was corny at first but I came to like the appeal of the advertisements, and they probably contribute no small amount of placebo effect to whatever energy gain there is to be had. This drink may well be better in the hands (or throat) of someone who is considerably fitter and healthier. Energy drinks are meant to supplement a healthily balanced lifestyle, not replace one. I don't expect miracles of this, but I'd rather they advertise the flavour than the benefits it claims to have for its target audience. So, is it a Warlock Win? As an energy drink it gets neither a thumb up or down. When I drank this at the gym just over a year ago it was very refreshing and encouraged me to drink my recommended daily intake of water. It was a nice treat and something to look forward to during a long day of exercise. But being sat at my desk it's just a sugar-free drink that's a bit better for my teeth unlike the brown sodas I regularly consume. There is an improvement to alertness and focus, and I do have some get-up-and-go energy, but it isn't a gamechanger quite like replacing a bot with a decent human player in something like SplitGate. As a water flavourer though it's incredible, that aspect easily gets a thumb up. The flavours I've had so far are incredible, and while the ingredients are natural they don't taste it and this is likely due to the intense sweeteners they've added, which is too much even when I'm adding over double the water they recommend. It's done well to encourage me to drink more water, and does a great job of seeing to my sweet tooth thanks to it being sugar free. So all in all, the experience is more positive than negative. If this sounds like something you'd like I recommend picking up a Taster Pack containing six sachets of your choosing.
  14. I'd say it like that also. But then what's deemed a solution? Is stabbing a rat with a sword constituted as a puzzle because stabbing it solves the problem of there being a rat? There's probably examples of that in point-'n'-click adventure games because combat is de-emphasised. Like RPGs, they shouldn't be 'defined' or 'constituted': you know them when you see them. It's not simply a matter of "a game where you play a role" because you can stretch that to encompass everything and get into meta territory of what role the player has. I like this quote. Recently I was playing the rather amusing first Frog Detective game and it really made me appreciate a simple inventory puzzle that plays on the goofiness of old point-'n'-click adventure games. Not everything has to be Amnesia: Justine.
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