December 6, 2017

Make Your Slow Nexus 5x Faster

My Nexus 5x recently became so slow that I decided to look online for a quick way to make things a little bit faster. I found a quick fix that seems to do the trick up to now.

  1. Go to Settings / System
  2. Go to Developer options, and switch OpenGL Renderer to from OpenGL(Default) to OpenGL(Skia)
  3. Reboot your phone

It made most lags and slowdowns go away at once. Good deal!

August 14, 2017

2010: Odyssey Two

The next logical step after reading 2001 was to dive right into its direct sequel, 2010: Odyssey Two. I read that one once in the past when I was still in high-school so I still remembered big chunks of it, but to my great surprise, not as much as I thought. I forgot most of the second half of the story for some reason. I’m somehow glad I forgot that much, as it unexpectedly allowed me to pretty much enjoy it a second time, something that doesn’t happen often.

2010 is very similar to 2001 in terms of overall pace and story depth, although there’s much more action and stuff going on this time. That’s probably why I preferred it to 2001 back when I was a kid. Many of the unanswered questions from the first installment are tackled again in some form or another, some of which are partially answered. The mystery around the monolith remains mostly intact, or perhaps gets even bigger, as, by the end, we’re given a neat idea of what it’s capable of.

2010 is just as good as 2001. It does indeed have some elements to its story that might be even more compelling than what we can find in 2001… But nothing makes me put it before or after the original. It’s definitely on par with its 1968 counterpart. A great read!

June 5, 2017

eXplorminate: All That Glitters Is Not Gold

A lot of 4X strategy games released in the past couple of years had some major shortcomings at release... Why?

Fellow 4X gamer Oliver "Mezmorki" Kiley from Explorminate shares what kind of issues have been plaguing most 4X strategy titles released in the past 5 years.  He pretty much hits the nail right on the head for the most part.

Here's a quick teaser before you dive into the whole article.
With the release of Endless Space 2 (ES2), a wave in the space 4X ocean has crested. The “Big 4” space 4X games –  Master of Orion: Conquer the Stars (MoO:CTS), Galactic Civilizations III (GalCiv3), Stellaris and ES2 – have all landed within the past year along with major expansions for GalCiv3 and Stellaris amidst a host of other titles.

And yet I can’t help but feel let down by the collective state of 4X gaming – specifically the prolific bugs and unrefined mechanical systems – especially considering that the above games were released by major, established developers. What began as an era of unprecedented promise and excitement has given way to the malaise of an after party hangover.

Example #1: Development of MoO:CTS appears to have stalled shortly after release with the game failing to have a lasting appeal among the core 4X audience. Will we get any additional content? Probably not. Example #2: GalCiv3 was a buggy mess that under-delivered compared to the highly touted and respected Galactic Civilizations II. Example #3: Stellaris, the innovative darling has just recently, at the one-year mark started to feel polished – but it too has been plagued by bugs and mechanical systems that remain lackluster. Example # 4: ES2 was released as an unpolished beta – and despite the preview build being solid, the release version was riddled with new bugs and plenty of balance issues remain.

So what happened? 
Read the full article on eXplorminate: All That Glitters Is Not Gold - eXplorminate

May 25, 2017

How To Handle Troublemakers On Your Forum

Running a community has its downsides. One of them is that it requires moderation. During your journey toward success, you'll encounter a ton of great people, but also some trouble makers who want to harm your community. Since such bad individuals are a true poison to online communities like yours, let's see what are the best ways to handle them (get rid of them!) effectively.

Just to make it clear, we won't be talking about light moderation or how to ask someone to calm down a bit. We're talking giant trolls, serial posers and sock puppets. Brace yourselves!!

May 10, 2017

FreeOrion v0.4.7

The folks over at released a new stable a few days ago. I gave it a quick try tonight in order to see if it’s more stable and optimized than v0.4.6 and it definitely is. v0.4.6 felt sluggish during some games and turn processing was slow most of the time, even in a small galaxy. This one feels all right and seems to be properly optimized. 

May 6, 2017

Brood War Patch 1.18

If you’re a StarCraft fan, this is probably old news. Patch 1.18 makes Starcraft free to play and compatible with modern operating systems. You read it well! You don’t need your old scratched CDs or your old computer running Windows 98. That’s the biggest update since 1.08. (1.08 was released in May 2001 and thoroughly reworked the game balance)

1.18 also integrates a revamped that works. It’s still being developed, so new features (like profiles) similar to what we can find on for other Blizzard games are to be expected. We should be able to discover them between now and the time Remastered is released. 

March 30, 2017

Starcraft Remastered

Can't believe they finally decided to go ahead and give Starcraft the HD treatment it deserves. 20 years later, we'll be able to enjoy this masterpiece once more on modern systems without having to fiddle with weird plugins and hacks to make it work right. Also, they're assuring us that game mechanics won't change. Cool! :)

Starcraft has been one of the first PC game I've ever played and I still consider one of my favorites, 2 decades and thousands of hours later.

They didn't announce yet how much it'll cost but who cares, this is Starcraft Remastered... TAKE ALL MY MONEY!!!

They updated, so check it out and visit often to make sure you don't miss any update:

Can't wait!

March 21, 2017

Why I Switched Back From WordPress to Blogger

Switching between blog platforms is now a yearly thing for me. It seems I can’t satisfy myself with one single platform on the long run. I’ve been enjoying WordPress for a while, until I figured it contained a ton of cool features I didn’t need after all. I gladly traded these bells and whistles for increased simplicity and ease of use. 

I’m going to share what made me ditch WordPress and move back to Google’s Blogger. 

March 4, 2017

2001: A Space Odyssey

I was recently able, almost by accident, to get a hold of a copy of 2001: A Space Odyssey and decided to give it a go. Being a fan of all things sci-fi, I was eager to re-read the classic and unique tale Mr. Clarke gave us so many years ago. 

Boy, I wasn't disappointed! The story still felt super compelling and interesting from cover to cover. The way every detail is brought up, developed then put together with the rest to form an amazing story is incredible. Contrary to the first time I read it, I didn’t feel the first part of the novel (the apes) was too slow. Like the rest of the story, it was fine and every single little element of the story fits perfectly in the right spot. 

2001: A Space Odyssey is a massive classic that's very hard to comment or review, other than admitting it's quite possibly the best sci-fi novel one can read. I highly recommend it. 

February 8, 2017

Dropbox Paper: When Less Is More

I’ve been a regular Evernote user for a few years now, using it numerous times a week to compose blog posts, articles and announcements for several of my websites. Evernote allowed me to write in a somewhat distraction-less environment that made me focus totally on my content, not on its form.  

While I love Evernote, I sometimes find myself forced to fool around with fonts families, font sizes and the likes… stuff that sometimes takes my attention away from my content. 

I’m surprised that I discovered Dropbox Paper just a few days ago, because it’s been in beta for half a year! It caught my attention immediately as a potential upgrade from Evernote, so I went ahead and tested it. 

February 1, 2017

Project Space Sector

Project Space Sector is a spiritual successor to Master of Orion 2, the turn-based space 4X strategy game from the 90’s that we love so much. This will be a faithful successor, that is true in spirit to the series. With all the complexity and depth of a big and complex 4X game.

You can follow the team’s progress here:
Space Sector | Everything about Space and Sci-Fi Strategy Games.

I’ve been following this blog for years. The folks behind both the blog and the game know what they’re doing, so the result should be very interesting. I hope they’ll be able to give an estimated release date in the next few months.

To be continued…

January 26, 2017

Riven: More Cryptic Than I Expected

Last year, I enjoyed a great timeless classic: Myst. This time, I decided to go ahead and play Riven, The Sequel to Myst. I knew, among other things, that Riven is considered the hardest episode in the Myst series, but I had no idea how that would translate in the game.

As I expected, Riven is an amazing game. Cryptic, but amazing.