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It's funny how the position for boot-licking is so close to the one used for curb-stomping.

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#1
I'm glad to hear you're doing okay, TWJ. I'm... not doing so great, actually, but there's a chance I exit the USA soon and get some real healthcare, so that's something.
#2
I recently found out that not only did I get scurvy a second time, breaking a promise I made to my recently-dead partner, but I also had CRIPPLING copper, Omega-3 and vitamin B-complex deficiencies. There's bound to be even more dire deficiencies we don't know about.

Coincidentally, a couple weeks before this, my live-in partner and I had received in our regularly fruitless trips to the food bank a bag of nondescript Powdery Stuff. It called itself Ka'Chava and claimed to be a superfood.

We can't afford all the supplements I need to survive. We get me Omega-3 and Vitamin C for now, and start working on figuring out how to feed someone so sick they can barely move. We come across The Stuff in the cupboard. It's nondescript powder and claims to be a superfood, we have some yogurt and I can just about swallow a thick paste, but chewing is at the edge. Fuck it, go for it. What the hell else can we do?

Oh. It's delicious. THAT'S weird.

Oh. It has enough of what I need that I'm covered for all but the vitamin C, actually. Even if there are other, secret deficiencies. That's ... exactly what I need.

It's been some days now. I have a scoop of this stuff in a small pile of yogurt every day, and I am rapidly recovering. It's been MONTHS since I've been able to stand up and do dishes on my own. Hell, I can rarely prepare my own food. Two days in a row, I've been able to do some dishes and cook my own food. Stand up without vertigo. Feel my fingers at all times. Insane. So, tonight, just before I tab over here, I decide to look up how much this stuff costs, because there's a lot left still but I kind of want to make sure I have it in stock. I have a fondness for it, given that it literally probably saved my life, and I'd very much love to get more.

80 dollars a bag. It's bougie celebrity health food protein shake bullshit. I cannot get more. But we got it from a food bank. A fucking food bank. For free. No money.

Whoever donated that to the food bank is, bizarrely, a fucking saint. Bougie health food is normally poison to a truly poor person. But this? This is shelf-stable nutritionally-dense supplement that tastes actually good. Could not have gone to a better home, actually, because I otherwise might be bedridden now.

Just. Wild shit.
#3
I have had to beg up money for food for years on end now. I have had actual scurvy three times in the past three years. I have chronic malnutrition of so many forms that it's impossible to tell what is health problems (intrinsic) and what's just malnutrition.

I cannot find work for anything. My partner got a job at Walmart and is about to lose it because we caught COVID, and they want medical documentation that she has COVID while we have no healthcare nor money to get that proof, or they deny her FMLA claim and she gets fired.

We will guaranteed be homeless in March, as a result. We won't have rent because we pay the outrageous healthcare costs, or we won't have rent because we don't and she loses her job.

I have been homeless for most of my adult life. While homeless I have been assaulted, sometimes sexually and sometimes physically, by cops, by bigots, by random passersby. I have the legal protections of an acorn, or a piece of litter: no one cares what happens, so long as I'm out of sight.

Trans people are being genocided. We're being legislated out of existence in multiple states, where existing becomes a crime. Multiple high profile politicians have said that we should just be killed. They have the power and the support to get away with doing that, turning the existing-while-trans crimes into capital offenses.

I'm Jewish. I know of which I speak on genocide.

Finnius, I sincerely hope you suffer like I've suffered. I want you to wish for release. I want you to feel the churn between knowing that death is escape, but feeling that the human body is an animal devised over millions of years of skin-of-the-teeth survival, by any means necessary, against all odds. I want you to start to bleed out after being stabbed and watch everyone walk by giving your screaming, bloody body looks like could you keep it the fuck down? We're on our way to work, here. You're a disgrace. Die where we don't have to look at it.
#4
Yudkowsky still hasn't learned. Also, he's hilarious to watch when viewed through the light of a "rational human being". He's a kook, and when you take him at his word, he even looks like one.
#5
Offering two of my own variations, also revealed to me in a dream.

-Grind up sumac and caraway seed in a roughly 50/50 mixture. You will want to taste this to get it right. You will know when it's right when you have a religious experience that makes you sound like Lil Jon.
-Butter your toast, then spread honey over the butter.
-Add your WHAT to the HUH, enjoy with DAMN.

-Grind up cardamom and cinnamon in a roughly 50/50 mixture. You don't need to get this right, but I encourage tasting anyway. Yummy.
-Butter your toast, then spread molasses (do NOT use blackstrap) over the butter.
-Add your cardamom and cinnamon mixture to the toast, enjoy with a strongly flavored black tea.
#6
His rationalism stuff is polluted by believing that ANY humans are EVER capable of being rational actors. If anyone was, we would simply all live in their example, and oops, you made a cult, better hope your rational actor doesn't have underhanded motives that lead them to rationally form a cult to pursue those underhanded motives.

Addiction to rationality is caused by irrational motivations. if we were truly rational we'd give up on rationality. As Roger was fond of saying, it's no way to run a human being.

What's useful about his rationalism stuff is specifically this: having a toolkit for when you want something else to blame if things go wrong, and the person in charge of yelling at you won't accept "God did it".
#7
Quote from: mx krabs the bepronouned on January 07, 2024, 02:00:04 PM
feel like he'd read like BIP and take away all the wrong messages . if he makes a single tweet about this all of the cryptocurrency/roko's basilisk guys would overwhelm us in seconds

He won't. He's too pig-brained to actually recognize any value in Discordian messaging. The one to worry about is Yudkowsky.
#8
RPG Ghetto / Re: Unified Vidya Games thread
January 01, 2024, 11:33:17 PM
If you do try Lords of the Fallen, I'd say go in expecting less Bloodborne and more Dark Souls 2 tier combat (so still fun, but on the rougher side -- though also without the odd floatiness of DS2) and Dark Souls level design with Bonus Extra Good Times (so extremely interconnected, densely packed with side paths, with a handful of odd tumorous areas that just hang off the rest -- plus the incredible other-world gimmick).

Also, the one design choice people complain about is that regular enemies are TOUGH and placed in medium-sized groups in ways that support each other (so if you see one lone weakling it's probably an ambush with another weak goon, an elite and an archer or two providing backup, etc). If you don't like having to deal with groups of enemies that back each other up well and that sort of combat priority ordering thing, you might not have fun, which is fine. I personally preferred the encounter design philosophies of Bloodborne, Demon's Souls and Dark Souls 2 to the other games, but that's a taste thing. If you DO like it, it's done exceptionally well here and is the backbone of the challenge.
#9
Propaganda Depository / Re: FREAKBAiT
January 01, 2024, 05:55:41 AM
Let me just say, I like you. The thing you linked doesn't appeal to me personally, because I'm old in the way that makes me disdain video content, but you I like. Good signature, great username, fellow queer, good times.

Sorry about all the death around here, forums are basically the sink node of reality these days, but hey, stick around or keep in touch.
#10
RPG Ghetto / Re: Unified Vidya Games thread
January 01, 2024, 12:35:39 AM
I think that can kind of explain Lies of P getting such a strong reception, but I don't think it explains Lords of the Fallen becoming the one to mock and make fun of. One of these games is distinctly better than the other, and it's not the puppet game.
#11
RPG Ghetto / Re: Unified Vidya Games thread
December 31, 2023, 05:31:56 AM
I've been playing this year's two wannabe-Fromsoft entries: Lords of the Fallen 2023, and Lies of P.

My experience is EXACTLY the opposite of the response to those games.

Lies of P has been a slog of an experience outside of bossfights, and bossfights are often so uninteresting that they end up being facetank-and-heal-through-it affairs. Andreus had masterful visual design, but almost no health and an entire military's worth of attacks that will just autowhiff, so it was over in an eyeblink and I hardly fucking noticed. When they aren't, they suck so fucking bad. Puppet of the Future is "what if we made DS2's Last Giant less interesting and put it in a poison poop pool". If you drained the pool beforehand, I'm sorry, you had the worse experience with this fight, because there's almost no positioning, everything has year-long telegraphs and it has little mobility and less reach. Combat in general has the consistency of gravel: rocky and slow with unexpected bursts of hyperspeed that feel totally out of character. You never feel like you need to use anything you don't want to use, which could be a good thing except that the game DESPERATELY wants you to be using Fable Arts and Legion Arms and thrown consumables. I say no. Fuck you.

Lords of the Fallen has been a delight to explore, and the bossfights have been, if too easy, at least very refreshing. They don't just have phases, they have MECHANICS! Knocking the Hushed Saint from his horse. Making sure to stay in the clear lane for Pieta's second phase. Hiding from the Spurned Progeny's nuke. Reinhold's knockdown mechanics. They even spice up the fucking minibosses that end up becoming normal enemies later with mechanics of their own. It's a wonder and a joy, it feels like a step toward a modernized Soul Reaver. The combat mechanics are janky, but overall fluid and consistent, and you really feel like using your whole toolkit when you get to understanding things like using the Lamp to create breathing room, or to stun a heavy hitter so you can mop up the trash in a room. It's designed like a puzzlebox, every encounter becomes manageable once you learn the way to approach it, and they give you a steady evolution of those encounters to teach you HOW to approach it.

Lies of P has the most sickeningly linear level design I've seen in a game claiming to be a "Souls-like". We are talking straight out of the school of Call of Duty. Bethesda does better levels, in the garbage side content they don't care about. If there are shortcuts they're rarely more than perfunctory nods at Fromsoft's use of shortcuts, and quite often there are none. It's like if you turned the progression pathing of Elden Ring's most linear caves into a whole game. Deathtouched Catacombs has more meaningful interconnection of the various parts of it, and I'm not joking. Disgusting.

Lords of the Fallen has a veritable warren of paths that turn its two more or less linear main paths (Pilgrim's Perch->Empyrean, Pilgrim's Perch->Calrath) into a complete maze. Even some completionist players will miss an entire miniboss just hanging out and chilling in the Fen. Paths often diverge and intertwine in ways even Fromsoft can't quite manage. The game is nearly ropy in its level complexity, a million fibers twisting together. Shortcuts are everywhere and make backtracking and dealing with the honestly stellar encounter design into a joyous ride, because you'll find ways to loop around you didn't know were possible your first ten times through. Honestly, the best level design in games right now. People should take notes.

Lies of P has a miserable story that cribs its core conceits from Isaac Asimov, its writing conventions from Ken Levine, and most of its weirder ideas from Nier Automata, all wrapped up in ...fucking Pinocchio. It's shameless in how it rips off better writers, and yet it doesn't even manage to make the results interesting. Yoko Taro and Ken Levine collabing sounds like a recipe for a game whose twists and turns give you violent nausea in the best way, but here they're stealing the existing works and just mashing them together without regard for how well they work together or apart. It feels like plagiarism in the cheapness of it all.

Lords of the Fallen has a main plot ripped straight out of Lord of the Rings and still manages to not only make the characters around that and the evolution of the main plot interesting, but has a dozen or so fascinating sideplots to uncover, deep and rich lore, and it takes time out to try and do right by the original game. It's a 7/10 story but it's the best possible version of a 7/10 story, hiding 10/10 flash fiction in its depths. Truly more than the sum of its parts.

Lies of P has a lackluster art direction that cribs in equal parts from Dishonored, Sir You Are Being Hunted, and either Grim Dawn or Remnant (it's hard to say which because it's the boring parts!) while bringing only dew drops of its own concepts to the table. In the process of mashing these three things together, it sucks the character out of them leaving you with a sparse collection of memorable images that lack any emotional resonance and all inexplicably remind you of better games you could be playing.

Lords of the Fallen has art direction that has noticeable core themes, strong color theory, a cohesiveness, and which borrows from a small handful of aesthetic forebears without actively making me wonder if its legally actionable at any point. It's not the best art direction you've ever seen (call it an 8.5/10) but its very solid and I'm hard pressed to think on approaches for improvement to it.

I do not understand why Lies of P is the critical darling and the fan favorite.
#12
Been busy dealing with shitty life things (like actually running out of food, like for real) but I found the time to do mix feedback for the past two days. It was for the Memorrhage LP2 coming out some time in 2024.

Garry released the first track on LP2 as a single recently, and it's a decent example of what to expect. Really aggressive, unafraid to experiment, maximalist as fuck.

https://memorrhage.bandcamp.com/track/downstone-2

I did vocals on two tracks and synths on another, so expect to hear more.

Taking a moment to just talk shop: I heard one  "hey what the fuck" moment in the entire thing, during my test listen through laptop speakers (I test through a variety of devices to ensure I pick up the biggest balance of listening environments), and it was on something that was kinda strange to begin with. Everything else, my feedback was nitpicking single hairs in a dog kennel. I couldn't even manage that for the headphones listen, that shit sounded magical.

And I don't think a big-bucks, big-name industry-titan producer could have done anything but wreck the fucking thing. All the trends in metal these days are hide the cymbals in a narrow, character-free frequency band, bury the bass guitar in the low end of the regular guitar -- even, especially if the bass is doing its own thing, pump the mids on the guitar track even after the band spends so much time scooping them on their amp settings, compress the drums until the toms sound like kicks and the kicks sound like a training bag in a boxing gym and the snares sound like bursts of white noise, never use reverb for a GOD DAMN THING, I hate it, I hate it all, and this shit is a breath of fresh air.

Musicians, learn to produce your own stuff! It's mostly vibes, it's not hard, and you will do a better job showcasing your stuff than some man who copy-pastes the EQ settings from his last big project for a paycheck.
#13
TST is an entryist neo-Nazi grifting organization run by a man so horrible that anyone choosing to associate themselves with him should be given the same treatment he deserves. We're talking Stormfront-tier levels of bad.

https://queersatanic.com/lucien-greaves-and-the-satanic-temple-have-a-lot-to-answer-for/

In other news, since I'm choosing to finally speak up about your nonsense, how fucking dare you parrot the fucking ADL, the biggest Zionist propaganda organization in the Western fucking world, about anti-Zionism. Multiple rabbis have written at extraordinary length about how Israel as it stands is a project that goes directly against Torah, and how every Israeli soldier and citizen that goes onto the Temple Mount is risking entering the Holy-of-Holies, which given none of these motherfuckers are the right kind of priests (because there currently can't even be the right kind of priests, a whole lot of preconditions are necessary for that!) is an ENORMOUS sin. Like capital punishment sin. Like buddy, you better just convert to another religion, because you're fucked forever sin. Not to mention shit like an IDF soldier touching a Torah parchment (!) with a FUCKING KNIFE (!!!!!!!) ON FUCKING CAMERA. Any Jew can tell you that's layers upon layers of oh god fuck no what the fuck is wrong with you fucking holy shit holy fuck. And Israeli ministers are literally saying shit like "we should turn Gaza into Auschwitz". That's not a misquote or a paraphrase.

The leadership and the upper classes of Israel are all bloodthirsty monsters who have not just forgotten their history but have chosen to repeat it but with themselves in the driver's seat. Their actions will lead to a rise in anti-semitic violence because people will blame Jews as a whole for them, because they claim to speak for all Jews while actively shitting on Torah. Anti-Zionism isn't just okay, it should be the position of any right-thinking fucking person on the goddamn planet.

You are cheering on neo-Nazi entryists and blithely repeating the propaganda arm of a group of genocidal monsters that just so happen to be Jewish. I, a Jew, am saying shut the fuck up forevermore, you politically illiterate dunce. You may speak again when you have the barest fucking understanding of how to check whether the shit you spew is based in anything but the PR wing of a bunch of horse-laughing movie villains.
#14
Finally digging into modern funk rock in an attempt to bolster my theory that funk rock and nu metal are related. Loving this stuff. Howl, you'll love this.

https://theexilemusikmob.bandcamp.com/track/mad-dash
#15
Good to hear things aren't all awful, Scribbly.

I also have issues with work, though it's finding work in my case.