Sixteen microblogging bits from ActivityPub.

Microblogging Journal through 3/11/2024

1,491 words.

Microblogging Journal through 3/11/2024

Dispatches from

Monday 03/04

  • 08:42 # Another problem with Lords of the Fallen is that, where I’m at in the game, I can’t upgrade any weapons beyond +5. Tier 1 and 2 upgrade stones are infinite (as long as you farm for souls), but the tier 3 upgrade materials to upgrade weapons up to +8 are extremely rare, so I’m stuck with the one +8 weapon I picked first, and I can’t switch to any of the other weapons that keep raining like candy down on me all over the place because they’re all underpowered at +5. The stats are weird in this game in general. There’s not much difference in power from the beginning of the game to the middle of the game. Pumping tons of points into your health stat doesn’t increase your health much. Damage numbers don’t go up very much. Things like that. It’s very un-Souls-like. In Souls games, level up stat changes make very noticable differences in gameplay. Not so much in Lords of the Fallen.

  • 09:37 # I’ve just noticed that the video encoding on my YouTube uploads isn’t very good. Can’t tell if it’s me or YouTube. Trying a different encoding process in the script. (I was using nvenc which is gpu-based and faster but now I’m going back to libx264 which is cpu-based and slower but visually better.)

  • 19:04 # It would be nice if Enshrouded didn’t compute shaders for six hours every time you launch it, so I wouldn’t immediately think of something else to do instead.

Tuesday 03/05

  • 09:01 # With all the talk of survival games this year, I went back and installed Sons of the Forest. It’s nice to see a survival game that looks polished and complete, as opposed to all these minimum viable products like Nightingale. It has such a bizarre UI for interacting with the world though. You pretty much have to Google how to build a fire. Much like The Forest before it, it’s such a beautifully rendered forest environment that you just kind of want to sit around looking at the scenery.

Wednesday 03/06

  • 09:00 # Late last night I ran into Tancred, Master of Castigations in Lords of the Fallen, which I have to assume is the guardian of the fourth skybeam. I concluded it would be a nightmare fight and left it unfinished, to work on it another day. That day being today, probably. Finally I’m seeing enough tier 3 weapon upgrade materials to upgrade another weapon beyond +5. I have chosen the Beast Axe, which is indeed a beast of an axe for dual-wielding. So much so that I assume it will get nerfed in a future patch.

  • 09:06 # I’m rather appalled at what YouTube is doing to the quality of the videos I’m uploading. Even after changing my ffmpeg settings from nvenc to libx264. These game videos look gorgeous when they leave my computer but they turn into blocky garbage on YouTube. So much for using YouTube as a backup service. I’ve done some reading and apparently the fix for this is to upscale 1080p videos to 1440p to trick YouTube into using a higher bitrate when it re-renders your videos to try to destroy them. I might experiment with recording the videos at 1440p to start with. That’s the resolution I play in anyway.

Thursday 03/07

  • 21:32 # Got through Tancred in Lords of the Fallen tonight, on the third night. Wasn’t really complicated, just had a hard time maintaining the intense focused concentration necessary to get every dodge exactly right and avoid excessive mistakes, so it took like 30 tries over 3 days. In the end I somehow got through 90% of the entire second phase without any healing. Was expecting to cleanse the fourth skybeam afterward, but the boss room seems to be a dead end. Confused.

Friday 03/08

  • 09:22 # I did indeed get the Dragon’s Dogma 2 character creator and immediately made an old lady and an old man character for heroic fantasy adventures. It’s one of the best combinations of a deep character creator with a zillion sliders (the bad old antiquated kind) with a just-click-some-buttons-and-get-me-in- the-game character creator (the hip new good kind) I’ve seen yet. And tons of kudos for having the option to make characters that are, you know, characters, and not just genetically engineered teenagers.

  • 09:38 # Still annoyed at how bad my videos look on YouTube. I’ve tried tinkering with my encoding settings before uploading to YouTube. I don’t think it matters. YouTube re-encodes whatever you upload and turns it into garbage no matter what. That’s one of the only things I liked about Twitch. It doesn’t re-encode your videos. Or at least it didn’t used to. Sadly it doesn’t matter because Twitch deletes your videos after a while. Anyway I read a rumor that upscaling to 1440 would force YouTube to use better re-encoding settings so I’ll try that next.

  • 09:44 # Still looking for that elusive YouTube alternate video hosting solution that doesn’t, you know, suck. Or cost a fortune. Looked at self-hosting with some open source solutions but the storage space requirements to hold some 2+ TB of video files every year are somewhat cost prohibitive. Well, not that, but it would be insane to spend any amount of money more than zero for what is essentially a completely worthless project to increase the quality of my online videos.

Saturday 03/09

  • 09:50 # Last night’s video uploads were upscaled to 1440 and they do look less blocky to my eye. However when I compared them to the previous videos, the 1080 ones looked less blocky too. I wonder if YouTube does multiple passes of re- encoding on uploads, one that’s immediate but looks terrible, one that takes a day or two but looks better. I dunno. It’s inscrutable.

  • 11:16 # I’ve seen a few of the negative reviews on Steam for Lords of the Fallen saying things like “the runbacks were awful” and I can’t help but wonder if those people somehow missed the Vestige Seed mechanic that lets you plant a checkpoint pretty much wherever you want. Running back from every major Vestige would definitely be ridiculous and way harder than the original Dark Souls. But I’ve never had to do that. With the Vestige Seeds I respawn pretty much right outside the boss fight area and run back in seconds. Maybe that was something they added after launch. It does seem like they launched the game in a somewhat unfinished state.

Sunday 03/10

  • 11:09 # I’m working on the fifth beacon area in Lords of the Fallen, the Abbey of Something Something, and my strategy now whenever I encounter one of the extremely frequent parts that are “here’s a former boss paired with another former boss and a couple of dogs and archers thrown in just for fun” is to just run past it to the next place I can put down a Vestige Seed. They really just kind of phoned in the enemy placements toward the end of the game. Really feels like they launched the game about a year and half early, before they did any, like, you know, playtesting. Still, I don’t regret playing it. Still way more fun than Lies of P.

  • 11:16 # Speaking of Lies of P, I had an idea to replay the game and try the bosses solo instead of summoning the Spectre all the time, to see if maybe I was a little unfair in saying every boss fight was an arduous chore and not even a little bit fun. Turns out, I was exactly right in my evaluation. Every boss fight so far: Not fun. Even less fun solo. Every boss attack in every boss’s moveset is a trick, a fake out, shaky arm movements you can’t read, a backward swing, a long windup followed by a super fast strike, fury attacks that always seem to appear right when you’re low on health, etc. etc. Just constant player trolling. The only way to play Lies of P is to hate-play it.

  • 13:28 # You know that feeling when you look at how many hours you’ve played an MMORPG and feel bad about your life choices? Well I just went through all my videos on YouTube to pick out the the boss fight videos to put into a playlist and there are almost 3,000 videos on my channel.

  • 17:27 # Well it took me 35 minutes just to get through the first phase of Judge Cleric in Lords of the Fallen, which doesn’t really bode well for the entirely predictable surprise second phase, in which I died in seconds. Sigh. Another excessively long boss fight I’m going to have to load into a video editor and work on later. That’s why I made a playlist for them. Because I put more work into boss fight videos than any other ones on my channel.

Hey look, I added comments again, because it was easy and free. I don't recommend writing anything that you don't want to lose, because I don't know anything about the stability of this platform.