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Ling Ling

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About Ling Ling

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  1. MCC banked on the nostalgia for the older Halo's for its success, sure. However, it's potential audience is limited to people who have remained in the Xbox ecosystem for as long as that game came out. The main draw of porting MCC to PC is its sheer ubiquity; regardless of why you left the ecosystem, playing Halo 3 (or whatever your nostalgia beckons) again for a small price on Steam without paying for the console and XLive and all that other stuff will be what draws people back in. The barrier to indulging in a game of Halo 3 after selling your console X years ago will never be smaller. I don't have concrete evidence, but anecdotally, this seems to describe a lot of people.
  2. I think if you're at risk of burning out / you already play MCC on Xbone routinely, you're not the target audience for MCC PC. However, I think the biggest perks for people like us is that we can put Halo on hardware more portable than an Xbone, and modding for this installment is probably going to be a big thing.
  3. A big problem with Halo 4 is that the Didact's motivations are wrapped in a 5 minute long cutscene that literally just "expositions" the entire pre-firing universe. Anyone who has purely been playing the games has no idea humanity even existed before the firing, outside of some subtle references in the games and terminals, which makes the cutscene confusing for newcomers and casual players. The sad thing is I think a slight change in dialogue could have fixed that, but as you'll notice, dialogue is the underlying theme of my criticisms. This is where I feel like I get lost with a lot of people that liked Halo 4's campaign. At a high level, Halo 4 has a very interesting plot. Chief and Cortana get stranded on an unknown Forerunner world, they face a mysterious threat, they meet up with a single human ship, remnant Covenant threats, blah blah blah; I have a few specific criticisms (the Genesong thing is soooooo unnecessary), but its a sufficiently Halo plot, whatever that means. The problem comes in the execution and claims about its execution. For one, my strongest criticism is the dialogue. Its terrible across the board. Nothing about it is believable or convincing. It feels like it was dubbed from a different language. There's nothing inventive, at all, about Cortana's rampancy. There's so many interesting instances of "ai goes bad" in all of fiction, and they decided to go with having Jen Taylor scream her lines in every other cutscene. I could not even imagine a less creative way of demonstrating rampancy. The performance poisons everything else. Chief is apparently at least partially motivated by Cortana's random existential statements and yelling, and considering its a major aspect of his "development", it does a number on my ability to suspend my disbelief. Everything Del Rio says is absolutely hilarious. I couldn't take him seriously to save my life. He's not "Del Rio", he's "antagonizing strict commanding officer" from every piece of fiction that even slightly borrows from that trope. Lasky and every other human character basically don't contribute to the plot or Chief's character development. Within just the context of Halo 4, the Didact is an OK villain. His motivations aren't particularly interesting and basically boil down to being...xenophobic and/or crazy(?) because of the pre-firing wars; he's irrational. There's nothing really wrong with that, but in comparison to the Covenant or the Gravemind, whose motivations have at least some layers and complications, the way he's presented in Halo 4 just isn't that interesting. Its bad that it takes it material seriously if its not so serious aspects were stronger. Bathos and dumb one-liners were frankly the original's greatest strength in terms of writing, outside of just having a generally interesting universe and plot. Abandoning them would require strong dialogue and characters to take its place, and I don't think that happened. I see no reason to praise an attempt at a serious story if it wasn't a good attempt. *Cortana begins dubstep screaming* Halo 4 definitely had this, and I appreciate Halo 4 for what it is. But I think its reported depth and quality is massively overblown.
  4. The positivity towards Halo 4's story is baffling to me. Its paper-thin melodrama wrapped in a terrible artstyle with awful dialogue and terrible pacing, and is largely void of the self-awareness and levity of the original trilogy. When combined with the gameplay, I'd be quick to say that Halo 5 has a better multiplayer than Halo 4 has a campaign, which isn't something I'd claim lightly.
  5. I think you guys are overthinking Fortnite's success. Fortnite's mechanical complexity probably has little to do with its success; it derives its success from being a fulfilling and unique social experience, a story with stakes and real people. All battle royale type games strive for this experience, it just so happens that Fortnite was one of the first to reach a level of quality that spread to consoles while not also being incompetently made. Its not necessarily popular because its "great", its popular because its "good enough" to embody the experience people want to have. Skill floor is a meaningful factor in how well a BR game does, but Fortnite's runaway success as a social experience is a massive confounding variable in our judgement of how a "casual" audience responds to higher skill floors.
  6. It doesn't require too great a deal of cognitive dissonance to both remain critical of 343 and criticize others for creating content that they perceive as nonconstructive. The cold, hard reality of software development is that project scope isn't always what it initially appears to be. Requirements change. Higher-ups change their minds. This sentiment is why game companies like Valve don't communicate virtually at all with their sub-communities. Has Postums actually explicitly called someone a sweaty tryhard, or are you extrapolating from 343's past interactions with the community? Do you think there is any causality between the impolite discourse and said asinine decisions?
  7. He has his own Discord channel. https://discord.gg/NbnSjmf
  8. https://youtu.be/6y0uPZXBjBo Here's a link that doesn't 404.
  9. The actual answer to this is that earlier Sanc settings were "No Snipes" (which meant that the very common "No Duals" ruleset couldn't be used). Snipers were later reintroduced, but "No Duals" didn't take its place, presumably because players were now used to them being there.
  10. The sudden concern over game ownership is interesting to me. Surely you guys also realize you already own very little of Halo 5? So long as the Xbone remains unhacked, you rely on a network of servers to access anything in Halo 5 beyond the single-player campaign; It can be taken away from you just as easily as a "streamed" video game can be. Forge content, gametypes, flims, game patches, are all essentially fleeting. The acceptance of partial non-ownership of console video games is several years old now, its not some theoretical future.
  11. The concept of a decentralized server structure is a very attractive idea until you grasp what your favorite game's primary demographic is in all its pure, unfiltered glory.
  12. I think this is a really understated part of Halo 3's strength, and I think its part of why there is such a strong push for the "classic art style". The sound, physics, lighting, and textures really come together into something really cohesive and grounded. At risk of sounding overly reductive, I find Halo 3's assets to be more grounded and believable (even Covenant/Flood/Forerunner assets) than floating teleporting anime robots that talk and turn into flying orange computer spirits upon death.
  13. While I agree that mixed playlists have been very damaging to H1 and H2 up to this point, single-game playlists should prevent the situation you're describing. 343 has been cognizant enough to realize that the population doesn't have great crossover between games, and therefore each game should be relatively sandboxed from playlist changes from other games. We both know H2 FFA will have little effect on the H3 population because why would H3 kids ever enter a H2 FFA playlist? 343 (should) realize this as well. The real equation is whether or not H2's dedicated population can support a FFA playlist, and how much its existence draws people into the H2 sandbox vs how much it drains people from other H2 playlists. As for your believe that the X360 H3 doubles playlist is still somehow viable, I agree with M. The quality is garbage. I'd far prefer playing doubles in a stunt_man server in CE (the discord lets you organize controller only games) or organizing my own doubles game in H2V than deal with a doubles playlist with little population.
  14. The planned selection of playlists is actually pretty decent, at least as a starting point. My thoughts: I'm a little surprised that CE got 3 playlists, I would have expected just the obvious 2v2 and then either BTB/4v4. I suspect one might go, but I guess we'll see what the population looks like. Remove TS from H2, add Dubs. H2 Hardcore wasn't that far from default anyway. If I were them, I'd test out a dedicated FFA playlist to see if it can maintain a population. H3 looks good. Once again, I suspect you could add Dubs with little consequence to the population. Radical idea for H2A: Remove TS, add Action Sack. H2A's real value is in its Forge scripts and minigames. Make it the minigame/infection hub. It really warms my heart to see H4 get relegated to a single playlist. BTB was H4's biggest strength, so having a single BTB playlist is likely the best move in terms of actually catering to the population and having H4 in MM at all. This. A social/rank split is the only good reason for keeping TS in H2.
  15. I'm really hesitant about throwing scorpions onto the map by default. Scorpions on the map basically nullify interesting Warthog play and promote vehicle hoarding. On a related note, I think another interesting way of incorporating the big maps into your 4v4 settings is with a real Race mode. Team Race: Team Scoring: Sum Race Type: Any Order Team Play: Yes Laps to Win: 25 Vehicles: 4 Rocket Hogs, both sides (could be normal Hogs if we're focused on excluding GB content, but RHogs are more interesting in vehicle vs vehicle) Vehicle Respawn Time: 60 seconds Weapons on Map: -Either Short Range or None The best vehicle race maps are: -Death Island -Timberland -Ice Fields -Infinity Unlike most gametypes on these maps, Race is a pretty focused and succinct, and its a great way of experiencing CE's vehicle sandbox even if we end up without a way to play BTB in CE.
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