Sunday, 31 August 2014

WarThunder - Experiments - Fw190-A1 Taxi Handling

Having read this page we have the following snippet...

"The tail wheel is freely pivoting but can be locked by holding the control column back as on the P51B"

This leads me to want to experiment with my Fw190 take off procedure, which right now is:

1. Apply Brakes.
2. Start Engine.
3. Check Rudder trim is neutral.
4. Apply 25% power.
5. Release brakes.
6. Apply slight right rudder.
7. Progressively increase power and right rudder until rolling.
8. Allow the tail to rise at 70 mph.
9. Rotate and pull up at 110mph.
10. Retract gear.
11 At 130mph and climbing raise flaps.

It may have to become:

1. Apply Brakes.
2. Start Engine.
3. Check Rudder trim is neutral.
4. Apply 25% power.
5. Release brakes.
6. Apply slight right rudder.
** As the airframe straightens, pull the stick full back to lock the tail wheel **
7. Progressively increase power and right rudder until rolling.
8. Allow the tail to rise at 70 mph.
9. Rotate and pull up at 110mph.
10. Retract gear.
11 At 130mph and climbing raise flaps.

We can also make use of this, if in the game on the landing, as we flutter on near zero power and touch down, pull the stick full back to keep the tail down and lock the straight running tail wheel.



I've just found this item on DCS handling of the Fw190-D9... You can clearly see that the rudder use is not violent here, and the pilot talks of gentle use of the rudder.

I will be experimenting with the brake stearing in WarThunder later this evening (written Friday before posting, so there maybe another Addendum).

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Cold Call Calamity - British Gas & Virgin Media


I say this because I've had two calls this morning, the first from purporting to be from British Gas, and the second supposedly from Virgin Media... Both have my ire, and both just got up my nose...

lets dissect, the first call came from a Nottingham number, an 0115 land line number, so I was willing to answer... Wondering who would be calling, there are NO BRITISH GAS resources here, so I answer and this is how it goes:

Me> "Hello"
Click, click, clunk

And I can hear a lot of chatter, from a call centre, or at least a room full of a lot of people farming scams on telephone...

Me> "Hello?"

And finally, a voice, with a very strong Indian accent...

< "Hello"

Its a very strong accent, and a very deep voice, almost like a novelty voice...

Me> "Yes, hello?"

< "Hello"

Okay, creepy...

Me> "Who's speaking please?"

< "Can I speak to Mrs Xelous?"

Me> "Who's speaking please?"

< "This is British Gas"....

If he'd have said Korma Gas, or Rogan Josh Gas, I'd have had him onto the wife in a shot, but instead British Gas... with a Nottingham number, going to an Indian Subcontinent Call Centre... This is what is screaming "SCAM!" to me.

Its a local number, and NOT a local line, nor a local accent... Well, not local outside of certain corner shops (no I'm not being mean, I'm just stating the fact this guy was Indian, and did not say "duck" at all, so it was a big give away he was not in Nottingham, not Britain).

Me> "You may speak to me"

< "No, Mrs Xelous"

Me> "I'm the co-account holder"

< "And your name?"

Me> "If you're British Gas and looking at our account details, you can see my name, so you tell me"

< "No you must pass security"

Me> "You called me..."

< "Security, your password, can you tell it to me?"

Me> "No, you just called me, you could be anybody... Prove you're British Gas, you pass my security, how much was my last bill?"...

And the phone hung up... I've been and looked and British Gas seem to call everyone via local internet routing, so I was talking to this guy on a collective IP based network voice link, and it was being routed over the internet to the UK and then out of a Nottingham based service provider.  That explains the number, but the behaviour if the call centre staff is appalling, and I had a good chat with a colleague about how they should handle this.

And Irony upon Irony, my phone rings again, its an 0800 number this time...

So I against my will, but out of curiosity, I answer... And the comic accents carry on.

This time, we have a very deep feminine voice with an extremely strong Caribbean accent, I'd like to say where exactly, but Jamaica, or St Lucia... Somewhere there, I'm not an expert.... So she's called me....

< "Hello"

She's a head of the British Gas man, she's said Hello...

Me> "Hello"

(I swear to god, I heard her suck her teeth)

< "Where Mrs Xelous?"

Me> "Pardon?"

< "Mrs Xelous please"

She's just fucking rude, simple as, no telephone manner, no politeness, just plain rude...

Me> "She's unavailable, who's calling pleaser?"

< "Virgin Media"

Me> "Well, you can talk to me about our account"

< "Give me your password"

Me> "No, you called me"

< "Password please"

Me> "I don't think you understand, you could be anybody, you called me, I do not know you're from Virgin Media, you just cold called me..."

Teeth definitely sucked this time...

< "I'll call back later"

And she just hung up...

Now this is just weird, two calls, both from different companies, both asking for the wife, and neither able to grasp that they were asking me to basically reverse the security order of normality... 

BRITSH GAS  and  VIRGIN MEDIA... If these were your call centre workers, they sucked, they sucked so bad I've come to my blog to record their attitudes for posterity.

The numbers I was called from:

British Gas - 01159540170

Virgin Media - 08004089341

The latter number is apparently a legit Virgin Media number, which has called other people

And these other recipients have also said " they swiftly went off the call..."

Friday, 29 August 2014

Dog Fights, Dye and Death - War Thunder FW190-A1 Simulator Handling

A strange 24 hours have besieged me, first of all, I got to play some WarThunder, I set up Track IR and my flight stick and set off doing touch and go landings in various aircraft under Simulator conditions.  More about that later.

We have had the wife brother visit, all good, except the wife bought a new mat for her room and it was PINK... not Pink, not pink... PINK!... She decided to wash this for the first time, and has promptly dyed a significant number of other articles PINK!... Shesh...

And Death... yes, I was greeted last night with the task of retrieving a dead starling from the flat roof, collecting it up it appeared the poor thing had flown into the window and broke its neck.  But because it has been raining for a couple of days it had been up there at least three days and yesterday was quite sunny... The smell... The Smell of Death... urgh.

Anyway, back to gaming.  I've also been playing Minecraft, lots of Minecraft, my base is coming into some shape, and I've still been doing lots and lots of caving.

But last night my gaming attention was on WarThunder and playing some Simulator battles, not I was not interested in the current furore over bombers flying easy mode in Simulator battles, instead I was out for some fighter action.  Now I'm not an inexperienced online aircraft pilot, having flown lots of IL2 Forgotten Battles, in both personal and squadron time.  My main experience was with the Fw190-D5 and the P51 in IL2.  So I set about flying my American line first.

Whenever I come to Simulator (or Full Real Battle as I still like to call it) I spend a good hours getting myself used to my aircraft, lacking the P51 being unlocked - yet - I took to the P47 my current research focus.  My general practice routine is take-off, three circuits, landing.  Take-off climb to altitude, aerobatics, test nose oscillation (porpoising), test roll, fly inverted, immelman turn, inverted immelman turn, barrel rolls and then rudder turning on hard turns followed by another landing.  And finally a take-off, three circuits, attack the ground target, fly at low-level, usually under a bridge or something else, followed by a landing.

That's pretty much my hours up, of course all this lets me tune my controls, check my seat position with the Track IR and of course get used to the aircraft, its only a pity this difficult flying doesn't get counted on your Pilot log/player card.

Anyway, I did all this practice in the P47, switched to find a battle only to be informed "This Nation is Temporarily Unavailable".

So, I went to my Fw190, unfortunately still only the A1 version but I'm only 5K Xp from the D5... I started off by test flying a take off and I was immediately treated to a wild amount of left hand torque from the prop... A very very strangely high amount of left hand Torque... Now I've read the Bf109 was notorious for this (and experienced that in other simulators), but the Fw190 design was intended to improve on the 109, and they did improve the torque handling... With the wide track undercarriage... I need to recheck my memory against other Sims and perhaps the D5 model.  But the Fw190A1 is very very difficult to control on the ground.

Set on the runway, no problems, Revving up to 25% throttle with the brakes on, and you can move around and taxi effectively.  But the aircraft has a horrible tendency to spin around to the left still.  

If we take a look at the A1's cockpit we can see this indicator

Now, being a game we don't get any Feel for the world, the only feedback is visual and audible, the key visual feedback for the yaw are the two indicators, lets highlight them with a bit of colour

The upper orange line marks where the movement of the impetus we're giving via the rudder, I would love to be an actual pilot and be able to tell you what this control is, but I'm not a pilot so lets call it our "yaw input"... yeah, so our yaw input is telling us how hard against the pedals our legs are working.

The lower purple line marks the current inertial force the aircraft is experiencing in the yaw.  So, if the black dot swings all the way to the left, the aircraft is going to slew its tail left.  To counteract this I need left rudder, to move the upper dot over the lower... Balancing the aircraft whilst on the take-off run is a full time job.

Now, I'm not using pedals, I'm using a finger rudder on the throttle of the Seitek X45 flight stick, reaching this - even with my fairly long typists fingers - Now this makes me immediately scream "Get a pair of rudder pedals", but I can't afford them and I've had precious little WarThunder flight experience.

Here we can see I've put on left rudder, and the aircraft has swung the opposite way...

This series of shots shows us the aircraft swinging around as I test the throttle and rudder together, try this out yourself, taxi around, be patient.  Eventually try some take-off runs.


Here we see us in the air in the Fw190A1 just after take off, we've bringing the gear up, but as you can see the aircraft is effectively flying squewed to the left through the yaw.  I'm pulling opposite rudder and trying to stay airborne.  This gives us a very busy take-off procedure in the A1, and something which feels very alien compared to my experience elsewhere.

Landing with the Fw190A1 was far more of a success for me, coming into line with the runway early is important with that radial engine blocking the view forward, drop the gear and landing flaps at 190mph (yes I fly in MPH not KM) when below 500 feet.  Now the practice runway for the Fw190A1 is not brilliant, there are trees at both ends of the runway.

If this were a real airbase I'd have gone out with a saw and chopped all the approach trees down!  As the number of times I find myself brushing their tops and hearing them was very worrying.  But drop the nose and drop the throttle to near idle and flutter into the landing.

Coming in with power on results in the aircraft wanting to swing and roll left once again, the roll to the left naturally makes me want to push right stick to counter act it and the results are always the same:

The left torque is a killer in the Fw190A1.

That all said, don't always take the Test flight experience as a valid representation of the aircraft, with the Fw190A1 I noted that in Test Flight one can use Aileron trimming, there is no such feature on the combat aircraft.  So the flight models may not be the same... I in fact strongly suspect they are not, because jumping into the A1 in a player combat mission resulted in two very different problems.

The first mission I took off, made it to the cloud base, joined combat on the wing of a 109-F4, who took on a Russian I-16.  As the combat broke I got onto the tail of an I-16 myself and made hits, only to have the Fw190A1 simply refuse to nose over and gain speed, it flew inverted with my pulling back on the stick refusing to nose over and dive.

My idea was to do low yo-yo and come into the I-16 on the upward stroke then roll over and come down again, in a high scissor action.  The actual flight ended up with the I-16 turning flay, my 190 failing to gain speed and then I was hit in the left wing... Looking to my left I saw NO marks, nothing... I'd heard the hit noise and been informed by the game my left wing was hit, but looking there was no mark, the control surfaces were all in place, the control surfaces still moved.  But if I took off any of the right stick I simply rolled left... Crippled I thus flew straight for 5 more seconds as I tried to turn with the rudder and the aircraft just went out of control.

Looking at the replay there was no damage shown on the wing... But clearly the aircraft wanted to handle as if there were no wing on the left side!

A shame, and in the aftermath I simply joined the battle queue again and off I went, this time a desert map - don't ask me to be specific - but the take off run went badly wrong... The 190 left hand torque lifted me far left into the dust, I nosed up too early to miss an AA battery and the aircraft yawed left wildly - despite hard left rudder - and it tore the left wing off on the ground.

This torque seems very wrong, murderous, and combined with my finding the test-flight model to be different has me strongly suspecting a bug or fault in the game.

Tonight I intend to get IL2 Forgotten Battles out and try the Fw190 in there and also the D5 in WarThunder, see if they're the same.  A shame, as I had hoped to buy premium time this weekend and the week after next - a holiday from work for me - and play many simulator hours.

Oh, and the final drama of the day, around half eight a knock at the door found me facing a drunk woman asking for Richard and Porscha... No not here... "This is XXX address"... "yes, but there's no Porscha here"... she was very drunk.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Story Time - My Best Worst Day

Really this is a worst, best, kind of day thing... but first, let me set the scene, I graduated and had a good job I never really applied myself at; but luckily I got head hunted and promised riches beyond my wildest dreams in another job.  Fantastic!  Also I'd gone through five years of secondary school then two years of college and had a massive crush on a girl, and she was now my girl friend... only took me five years beyond the end of college to get her, but I got her...

So, I'm at this nice new job, and I've got the girl I wanted, but... She's a bitch... She hates me really, she was fine until she graduated as a junior school teacher, at which point she became so supercilious and strange she never turned off, and came home and was just a pain in my rear, you know she was either moaning about work, moaning about being a woman (yes this means moaning about periods) or hanging out with her ex - who used to and I believe carried on beating her.. More about that later.

All was going okay, I moved into the new job... But had to spend more and more time trying to please this bemoaning pain in the arse and got more and more tired, things at work got a big sketchy, they didn't really know what they wanted me to do, or understand the technology I could offer them - this was the days of the early internet and people wanted a "program" to happen in browsers but there were basic problems like I was barred from using the internet... To write Internet based applications.... YAWN...

Long and the short a day came when I knew something was going on; my spider senses were twinkling; I got into work, and someone had been on my PC, my password was changed, I was locked out of the network and there was that little note "just pop by and see Vanessa"... Meah, I knew it, I was canned, so off I went canned... Gone, I knew it, and I left no big deal... I'd even thought the writing was on the wall for a week because of a business problem, and project cancellation.

Anyway, I get into the car park, call the girl... No answer... In fact my call was actively rejected, hmm, weird, got some news about me for once, not you... Either that, or she was busy coming on, or coming off or enjoying the seeming fifteen minutes of level brain flight between the two states.  So I called the folks... And I remember laughing as they answered... "Well, that job is down the shitter"....

I wish I'd never said this to my Mother as since then and now (18 odd years) she's never shut the fuck up about it, I've been in my current job for 11 years, and never lost it, yet she's convinced I'm going to loose this job any minute... Not be made redundant or leave, but actively fired for being a douch or something... Yeah, she'd not make a great character reference for me.

Anyway, job canned, I get in the car and I drive home with a feeling of a great weight having been lifted from my shoulders.

But I'm driving home to she who must rule my life without actually wanting to commit to me, or sleep with me, or be nice...

And I open the front door, and nearly piss myself laughing even harder, pushed back through the door are her keys, she's left...

That's why she didn't answer the phone... So I have a scout around the house, yes the tampons, the always panty liners, the cloths and even a picture of her all gone, thank god.

I immediately celebrate with a trip to the shops, buy a huge £20 beef joint and roast it and eat great slices of it on fresh bakery bread... something I was banned from cooking, because she doesn't like the taste or smell... 

Either way you cut this, it should have been a terrible day... Employment lost, girlfriend of four years gone... 

You know what, it was the best fucking day ever!

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Film Non-Sense : Re-Animator

We've been watching some really weird films of late, I've been trying to get the wife to watch something's I consider good, but which she just considers too much trouble...

My ultimate aim is being getting her to watch, understand and get "Amelie" in French and "Night Watch" and "Day Watch" in Russian...

Last night we started off with "Re-Animator", something I consider a classic... I leave the obvious observations behind, but something struck me as hilarious, something I'd not spotted before or at least not been conscious of being a teenager watching this mid-80's video nasty.

There's a scene in the film where they first animate a corpse, and the Dean of the university comes down and challenges them... And... He gets killed... So they reanimate him, of course, like you do... He of course goes crazy, so they lock him up in a padded cell, so the next shot...

We have him in his padded cell, he's salivating blood, he's banding his head on the glass......


And this is where I lost it....

This padded cell, the window opens on his office... With his awards on the wall...!?!?!?!

I was so busy laughing I couldn't figure out, "Did they bring his awards to show him how human he was?"  OR... "Did this sick fuck have a padded cell to watch random victims bounce off the walls as entertainment?"

I'm not sure which was worse?  But it entertained me....

Especially when his daughter is co-oped to sign the frontal lobe surgery in that very room...

Come to think of it, the office is probably the "bad" doctor there... But why has he got a padded cell in his fucking office?!?!?!?

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Minecraft Ordeal 4

For my Minecraft Ordeal of late there's so much to tell... I've been renovating my home base, expanding and linking places with rail, I've been in the nether and finally found netherwart so started to brew potions, I've also found a village and turned it into a fortified position and also caved...

I've caved so much that the skeleton spawner has more than quadrupled the number of skeletons it generates, but my caving duties are still not done through my hole base chunk.


I've done the base out in a combination of yellow and orange colours, notably a lot of sandstone, for which I like the texture I have loaded...

My rail links come into a new arena like area I've opened up off the side of the base

Where rail links slice at a set level I've kept them below ground and capped them with glass causeways

And of course this new rail infrastructure has been pushed down into my dep mines

I've kept the inside pond in the base, for night fishing... Though I'm yet to find any wolves or cats to tame...

My next projects will be a highrise rail link to the fortified village, villager breeding and then I have a stables to build with the many mules I've acquired.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Story Time - My Worst Ever Date

Story Time - My Worst Date

I'm not going to profess to being a cassonova, but I've had my time with the ladies, some terrible, some very good...

I've turned up to dates, blind dates, exciting dates, scarey dates and one date I've wanted to chew my own arm off just to have something to hit the girl with!... Lets talk about that...

It was a late spring day, not cold, and I was given the number for this lass Claire... I can't remember how I got her number, I think though a guy at work... Anyways, we talked on the phone once or twice and then arranged to meet and she chose to meet by some shops in a nice part of the city, so I figured she lived near there and was a nice person (please note I was born in St Anns in Nottingham and grew up on Top Valley - you may see both in the news - so I'm not judging here, trust me).

Anyway, she described herself as an average build, shoulder length blond, with blue eyes and long legs... I myself am a post college karate toned hottie... Yes, I'll be honest, I was dark haired, clean cut, nicely dressed and a black belt toned body... Not a weekend went by I didn't have some interest from somewhere... Anyways....

I pull up, and look around for this long legged blond... No sign... There's a short fat girl by the shop door... Smoking... and she stubs out her cigarette and comes over... and the voice from the telephone comes out...

"Hi ya" <insert hacking cough>....

Yes, this was my first introduction to her, this hacking cough, a proper phlegm orgy in her throat... I didn't like the look of her, her clothes didn't fit, she was smoking (which I hate) and her face was not nice, she had what I can only describe as lines down her face, as if she'd had a tribal tatoo removed, and she'd used foundation to try to hide this, but she'd used three different shades of foundation, a bronzer across her forehead, a very white pale one over her cheeks and then a slightly yellow one over her mouth and down her neck...

She looked to all intents like a coughing ventriloquists dummy...

I shook her hand and said, "If you're not feeling well, we can do this another time, would you like a lift home?"...

A polite, get out of jail card, as I didn't like her, and she was clearly ill... But she did not take the hint...

"Oh no, I've booked a table at a restaurant now"...

SHIT she's not going to abort this... So we get in the car, it wasn't a big car, but normally people fit in it... She's so large she spills out the passenger seat and into me in the drivers seat... Normally this would be a good move in my car, but she was unaware of this spillage, it was her bingo wings on her arms and as she folded into a seating position this globulous hump came out her side... seriously.

So we set off, she assures me the restaurant is just around the corner... We turn and she directs me, and we turn again... and soon we're on the M1 motorway... This is not good... We go a junction, we're still in Nottinghamshire.... We go another junction... She's trying to talk, but everytime she tries she coughs this hacking cough, and I'm pretty sure she wanted to spit out of the window more than once...

As she coughs she's so heavy the car moves in its lane, so I'm holding the wheel and making small talk, but I'm essentially talking to the hacking rocking shoulder of this coughing lump...

And then her eyes start watering, she's coughing so much her eyes get blood shot with the effort, and tears start to stream down her face.

We've gone two more junctions by now... And we're leaving the county... How far is she taking me... "Where are we getting off the motorway?"

"Junction" Cough "27"... We set off from 25.... It is only 2 junctions. But it is now a long way, perhaps too long with this coughing lump.

So we get off the motorway, and she's got tears streaming, and I notice has her perfum evaporates she smells a little... not bodily... she smells kind of stale... I crack the window open, the sun is setting, it's gone the normal time one would be sitting down to eat.

And we're snaking around country lanes going to god knows where, she seems to know where... She says she's been to this place before.... And then I drop the bomb... "So long as its not a fish restuarant"... It is... It almost exclusively does fish and lobster... Fatty wants me to buy her lobster!  But I'm allergic to fish and shell fish in all forms!

So we pull up thie very posh, over posh, gravel drive and I realise she's trying to take me to this very posh place... Its like £70 a plate... We go in and she gives her name and they lead us to a table... This place is empty, dead, the last diners ate an hour before... We're the last to be seated in a completely empty dining room.  And her mascara has been running, so the tribal tatoo effect is just emphasised and she immediately goes off to the loo to sort out her face and I'm left with the waiter, impatiently wanting to take my order...

I order a steak, and ask what sides comes with it... None I would eat... No veg... no chips... Just a steak...  What will she have, no idea... And then we hear her coming back...

She's coughing her lungs up... hacking and choking.  The very posh waiter turns and lets her fall into the chair, which creaks under her weight... And she begins to order...

I'm having a single dry steak remember...

She's orders... 6 king spawn shrimps in some oil sauce thing... A lobster... A monk fish dish and a half bottle of red...

This duely arrives and she eats like a total pig... and I find fish very off putting, I really don't like the smell, and these dishes stink... My steak comes with her second course and its swimming in a fishy smelling sauce, so I don't touch it.

She scoffs and tries to talk between swallows and hacking coughs... And she's now got bits of seafood in her teeth, so as she coughs its landing on me, and at one point she coughs just as I open my mouth to speak and a piece of fish lands in my mouth, and I freak out, I go to the loo, wash my mouth out and take as long as I can.

"Sorry I took so long, I don't feel right, that's why I've not eaten"... I try to let her down easy, shes scoffing... She wants pudding... The waiter - who is the only member of staff left - comes and appologises but the kitchen is now closed, she can't order pudding... Its gone eleven by now she's eaten like a pig spitting bits of food, mouth open chewing, and this constant coughing... So she goes to the loo again and I pay the bill... £215... And I tip the guy £10, fuck 10% this shit just cost me so much and I didn't eat a bite.

We go out into the night and its cold, we get back in my car, and she's sweating now, she smells of fish and moldy wet bread... She's still not making very good conversation, still with this hacking cough, and I want out now, I've been polite, I've made small talk, I've paid through the nose for shit all and I look a complete fool with this girl...

We're back on the motorway and I'm speeding, I'm pushing my little car to 110mph and booking it down to drop her off...

"You didn't" mchhhhaaaaaaaough "have to pay, I have money"... and she did, she had £50... I just smiled...

"Ducky, that cost £215, and I only had a £10 steak"... She just looked at me...

"Oh my god, I".. mmmmmaaaaaaaough.... "didn't know it cost that much, we went".... hackkkkkakaough... "there for my 21st"....

So she'd been, but never paid... Classic... I pull up at these shops where I picked her up, and basically got her out the car, I was loosing my patience, and didn't want to be nasty to her, she was just clueless... She gets out the car, and she before she can come around I pull off...

But... I didn't notice her string like handbag handle had caught in the door....

And she has it hooked over her shoulder.... I drive off... And it yanks her over, but ths bag handle doesn't break, it digs a nasty red line into her already puffy flesh, drags over her face, stripping it over the layers of foundation, and it pulls her over so she bangs her chin on the ground...

I stop and get out appologising and offering to take her to hospital, she says she's fine, but she's sat there now and looking even more of a mess.

Where the foundation has been scrapped off her face its caked in a thick layer on the bag strap and up into her hair in lumps, her eyes are streaming again, she's coughing and as she wrinkles up her chin blood is seeping out the graze of curled abrasion, and her top is all over to one side as the bag strap twisted her to the ground.

All in all, a pretty impossible situation.

She called me again about a week later, and I pretended to be moving house and very busy to talk to her...

She called and called, in the end she finally asked... "are you not interested"....

"No, ducky, sorry I'm not interested at all..."  She seemed very surprised by this.

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Google Gaffs with Greggs

I just love this joke....

But I love it even more, now I've had a look and the news article is actually about the logo I went to see.

I suddenly fancy a hot sausage roll... DAMN IT!

PMSL... Whilst drafting my post, the logo has gone... Search now and it's blank.

And the story hit the Telegraph... 

Friday, 15 August 2014

DayZ on PS4

Are they taking the fucking piss?... Really?... Seriously?.... I bought DayZ pre-release access on Steam over a year ago, and it is still full of bugs full of problems and is basically (last I heard) being re-written from beginning to end...

And to be honest, with all this, I feel like I've been ripped off, the game is essentially unplayable... You can hear Frankie making this point here:

As Frankie points out, they've now announced it for PS4... How about you lax fucks release the game?

I'm very tempted to check my consumer rights and ask for a refund, because there's pre-release access as one thing, there's alpha game play, and accepting that game play... BUT... BUT then there's just being a conman, being a snake oil sales man...

I've personally had enough of Dean Hall and the pontificating morass around DayZ, but no release!

And it seems I'm not alone in my thoughts:

TMan says:

The reason DayZ PC has not been being worked on is because Sony paid him to develope the PS4 version. Sorry, the reason DayZ got any ground was because of the PC mod for Arma II. This just shows he only cared about getting money and not really developing the game for PC. I still play the Arma II mod because it is hands down better than the stand alone. I am glad that I did not donate to this moron.

And I pretty much agree with him...

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Story Time - My Worst Plane Experience

My Worst Plane Experience... I just spotted this from Rhett & Link...

So thought I'd share my story of the drugged, possibly drunk, comic pilot... 1999, Flying from Morocco to London with Royal Air Maroc, they didn't have a plane available, so they had to borrow a 737 from Air Egypt... This thing turned up and looked like it'd not had a wash or been serviced in years... The three business colleagues I'm travelling with sit with me, and the whole rest of the plane is empty bar one German chap sat at the very front of the cabin...

We're sat pulled back 8 feet from the gate for about 40 minute, when suddenly we pull forward again, and a chap is embarked via the rear exit... He comes up past us, he's air crew, he looks like he's slept in a hedge, he's got his crumpled RAF style blue uniform on, he's Moroccan... And smells very deeply like the spice markets in Marrakesh.

He disappears into the cockpit (remember this is pre 9/11, so you could go in and out of them at will) anyway, we now get under way, we pull from the gate, taxi, and after about 10 minutes are hurtling down the runway... This plane is banging and rustling like an old Ford Escort turning onto the motorway... it rotates and we lurch into the air with a stomach bouncing jump.

After about 30 minutes we're at altitude and the screens a head show we're out over the Atlantic... The air hostess comes past and offers us liquor as we're no longer over Morocco (a dry country) and we nip a few scotches....

When suddenly the cockpit door opens, and the dishevelled pilot lurches out, he's not in his jacket any more, but he still has a white neck scarf on, which comically makes him look like something out of Biggles... And he walks down the length of the plane, slaps the air hostess on the arse and salutes us few passengers and goes into the toilet.

After a while, with us all looking awkward... Like... is he the pilot or co-pilot... and asking.. "There is another pilot up there?"... The guy re-emerges from the toilet... and he takes a really long slow sniff of the cabin air... Know what I mean?!?!?... And he strolls now much more confidently back up the cabin and the cockpit door closes.

The air hostess has a smile fixed on her face like a Barbie, and he looks at the other hostess... Bing bong, an announcement, this sparkly voice, with a very strong Moroccan accent comes on the intercom... "We now flying, high, twenny Towsand Feet, fee free to muv arund cabin, dinner serve in fifteen minutes, becos I hungry, ahhaahah"...

I swear to god, that's how he sounded, if it were a film rather than me actually sitting there, this would have been hilarious,  as a character he was pitched far beyond any comic pilot of any film ever, but this guy was for real!

Anyway, we see the dinners taken into them and coffee, lots of coffee... and we fly into Gatwick without seeing him again, no problems... But to this day I wonder... Was he drugged and hungover whilst flying?

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Google - Stop Annoying Me

I've just spotted something annoying with the Google search and the search direct from Chrome... You search from and your results come up, and the bar is there at the top of the page to let you search again...

It has been like this for years, and I'm used to it, I'm used to seeing this search result format and the bar next to "GOOGLE" there with the blue search again button... And I'm positive that I used to get this exact page if I just performed a search from the browser bar as well...

That is, rather than going to google itself and putting the search term into the page, I put the search term as my web address in the browser and it automatically assumed I meant to search for that phrase and gave me the same results...

The point here being I could get to the results and also quickly see to search again...

But I notice today the page has subtly changed:

The result when you search directly from the browser bar is a different page, the same results are shown... But the page is different, and at first I could not see how to refine my search term, because my brain is wired from years of use that the address bar is now not going to be used... You use the provided search term bar inside the page... 

Just like you get from the first style of search...

So I was fumbling and groping for how to actually redefine my search term on this new result page.

It really highlighted to me the change had slipped in, that it is a stealth change, and god I hate google for annoying me with stealth changes, it really annoys me when they do it.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Supermarket Search - Website Failz

So, I have some computer restoration and cleaning to do, this is of a set of four Atari ST's and an older Commodore 16... So I want to get some isopropyl alcohol really, but I'm skint the budget for this project is spent on the carcass Atari STe to re-case one I have which was painted green...

Anyway, a cheap alternative is to therefore look for cheap alcohol based skincare products in the beauty isle... Now I'm at work, and its lunch time, so I hit the internets and I wondered if Asda had anything suitable.... Here's the search


Yes, the search ability of this website is appalling, its not the only super market chain with this kind of problem, Sainsbury's is an online supermarket site I've used a lot and it's search is terrible...

Supermarkets, make this better, or hire me... I'll make it better.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Gaming Update - Atari ST - Heroes and Generals

Its been a long weekend, and a busy weekend, first things first, the main man lab now has a new floor laid - the last one I'm doing in the whole house - someone else can lay a new stair and landing carpet, I'm done!

I've also put up two new wardrobes from Ikea, sorted the garage out and also moved the guineapig into a new hutch.  These last two items were related to the rat issue, no sign of any rats I clearly scared that sucker off... But there were other things living in there... The first things I found were frogs, I don't mind frogs and I gave them a lift out in my hands and set them loose in the lilly pands at the bottom of the garden... They looked well happy... The wife however was horrified I'd pick up a frog and ran for it... Frogs are silky smooth very nice to hold... Not slimey and not cold - least not when the atmosphere is not cold... But she'd have none of it.

Anyway, with them moved we took up the old run the rat had got into, and I hung it on the wall as a kind of giant basket for stuff and filled it with a bunch of things, I stacked and piled things and since the last floor had been laid I now knew I could rid myself of the excess packs of Laminate flooring, so they went back to the shop... I'm yet to get a refund, but they went back...  So lots more space in the already spacious garage... Yay.

I also got some time with an Atari ST... yes, I got one down and I played a few games, notably Verminator... Blood Money... and Escape from the Planet of the Robot Monsters... Lovely.

The wife also picked out a film from pay-per-view... Devil's Due... Utter shit, avoid it at all costs.  I'm staggered such a bad, low tech, inconsequential film was made for 7 million bucks, and made over 38 million at the box office... The film was so bad I was more bothered what happened to their pet labrador then the people, and the film didn't even let you know what happened to the dog.  Terrible, utterly stupid, film with so many dead ends, bad camera work passed off as POV filming, just rubbish.  So avoid that sucker.

Finally, I did get a little time Saturday night playing Heroes and Generals, I was pleasently surprised to see they had a free premium weekend, so I got to play a few missions with premium bonus... And you know what... It was not that helpful... I was making between 5 and 8k  credits per game... and with premium bonus I made between 6 and 9... Nothing to write home about.

But I did have a massive "ahaha I told you so" moment in there... I've been playing with the G43, and complaining about it... and the god damn huge prices for upgrading it for so little return... Anyway, in a mission I pretty much spend my time trying to scround a bolt action rifle... And I found one and had a 14/2 K:D mission... Totally validating my thoughts on the G43, where I can't get anywhere near that without sitting on my ass camping rather than actively playing.

Later on of course I was sent back to a G43... And instantly annoyed as shit at coming face to face with an opponent, putting 4 shells into him... 4 hits... in the torso... and he just turned around and shot me in the face... IN THE FACE PEOPLE... It so unbalanced!

And this ends my rant for the week... Heroes and Generals... I like it, it could be so much better, it needs balancing... Guys over there, go play Day of Defeat for some weapon balance ideas... Oh and weapon sounds, cus the ones currently in game are crap.