Wednesday, December 23, 2015

The Devil Is a Part-Timer! (Season 1)


I finished watching The Devil Is a Part-Timer! season 1 (a.k.a. their only freakin season) on Netflix and I got to say I loved it. Unfortunately there has only been one season made of it and I don’t see plans for more, but I do see that there are light novels and mangas made and will look into them.

The Devil Is a Part-Timer!, or Hataraku Maō-sama! for all those who prefer the Japanese title, is about Lord Satan and the Hero Emilia fighting a grand battle for their world, Ente Isla, and just as Emilia looks to be delivering a fatal blow to Satan, Satan takes off through a portal and followed by his general, Alciel. This is about 5 minutes and we are now getting into the real show. Satan and Alciel find themselves without magic and in human form in this new land, modern Tokyo, Japan. They then spend a year off screen getting used to their new surroundings and try surviving in a world without magic. During the rest of the first episode, you see how Alciel and Satan are dealing without magic, taken on special roles and determining what it is they want to do from there. Either to try and return, or stay and subjugate this world instead. At the end of the episode, Satan, now Sadao Maou, comes across a lady he interacted with earlier only to discover she is actually the Hero Emilia, now Emi Yusa. She followed them through the portal and had to learn to deal with a life without magic and her celestial powers while looking for Satan to deal justice. And all that is just one episode!

Much of the show is about how the characters interact with each other, trying to discover the other’s motives and intentions in a humorous fashion. The characters are unique and I loved how Emi and Sadao constantly clash at each other in a frenemy way. To be honest, I was picking up a huge Slayers vibe - an anime that’s in my number one favorite anime slot. I really wish there was more than just the 13 episodes available to watch, but I’m going to be looking into the light novels and mangas now just to get more of these characters because I can’t stop now.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Terminator: Is Kyle Reese really the father?


Terminator; a death dealing robot that hides in a human skin in order to terminate life. These are scary killing machines, hell bent on carrying out their orders from Skynet. We all know in order to beat the robots, we’ll need the strong leadership of John Connor. And we all know for John Connor to exist, Kyle Reese has to go back in time to save Sarah Connor and spark that magical moment while protecting her.

But is he really the father? I come to you with another conspiracy theory my brother proposed to me. The likelihood for him to be the father is astronomical. What if he wasn’t the father, but is told to John like he was. Someone for John to look up to and explain his existence and coming role after the robot apocalypse.

Going back to the first movie, Sarah was living with her friend, Ginger. A couple of party gal bachelorettes that just want to have fun. What if John’s father is just a one night stand that happened slightly earlier or a boyfriend that was never mentioned. We know nothing about what happened before Kyle and the Terminator showed up. A situation like this could have actually happened and the story wouldn’t have been any more different. Plus we can get around the paradox that if Kyle never went back, then John would never have been born, hence why Skynet would send a Terminator back to kill her.

In other Terminator news, I was thinking how the franchise can finally move on and become something more. Arnold Schwarzenegger isn’t getting younger, and movie graphics still aren't where I’d believe him to be. So who could become the new Terminator? The more I thought, the more I came to terms that no one could fill this role for me… for this timeline. We know the Sarah and John Connor timeline far too well, and movies are just trying to retell this too us when there are perfectly good movies out there. One and two for me. So I suggest we need a new Terminator telling a new story in another location. We know the human’s side of the story, but what about Skynet’s. Maybe set out to ensure the creation of Skynet, or to help Skynet reach further, but a new set of heroes thwart it. Or sending back soldiers to stop the creation of Skynet and a Terminator sent back to protect it. The soldiers can come to terms that carrying out this order could mean they are no better than the machines and/or allowing Skynet a glimpse into what it means to be human.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Fallout 4 Settlements


Settlements are the best thing they could have added to Fallout in my opinion, and I’m hoping they do the same for the next Elder Scrolls game. There’s a lot of information already out there on making settlements or tips and tricks, or explaining how to get things. What I’m going to do is try to list what I know about them so far, especially stuff I had to look up, into small bite size explanations to get you on your way.

Edit Jan 4, 2016: Made a few edits to this as I become more familiar with the settlement system.

How to start a settlement

Settlements will have a workbench you can search in order to activate it as a settlement. Some require quests to activate (most likely through Minutemen), some require clearing out enemies, and some can be activated right away. Here’s a list of all the settlements if you want to look for one specifically.

How to get a flat surface on uneven terrain

Under the structures tab > wooden structions > floor, there will be objects where you can create flat surfaces. Either with the standard floor, or the cement block, or the wooden floor with posts.

How to unlock more stuff in your workshop to build

There are two ways to unlock more stuff to build in game; finishing certain quests (like the one after retaking the castle or completing the Cabot quest line), or finding Picket Fences magazines. There are 5 magazines to find in all and here’s a list of all the Picket Fences if you are struggling to find them. There are mods you can add to the game to unlock more stuff as well.

How to select and move or scrap a group of objects

You should be able to hold the button you use to select the object, default ‘E’. Hold it long enough and it’ll select that object, plus any object that is connected to it, plus any object that is really close to that group of connected objects. Accidentally got a hold of some corn when trying to move a wall, had to temporarily store it to get just the wall.

I had to strikeout group scrapping because I've never been able to do it. I've read you could, so it might exist and my game is bugged out, but for now I can't do that.

How to defend your settlement

You’ll mostly be attacked either from wooded areas or roads when you port in to your attacked settlement. Lay walls mostly at those vulnerable places with some turrets or guard posts. You also will get attacked from enemies sometimes that will already be in the settlement when you arrive, so have a turret or two, or guard posts, pointed inside your settlement as well. To safely port in, set up a small defensive spot that gives you a good vantage over the settlement and set the port-in rug there. The port-in rug is under resources > miscellaneous.

How to find a miscellaneous item

If you are having trouble finding something under the miscellaneous tab, it’s because it might be under another one. The main three miscellaneous tabs are under furniture, decorations and resources. Furniture has the majority of stuff you are looking for, decorations has radios and the jukebox, and resources has the scavenging station, brahmin feeding trough and home port-in rug.

How to connect settlement’s junk inventories

You’ll need to get the 1st Local Leader perk under the 6th level of Charisma. Then you will need to find an unused settler in each of your settlements and go into workbench mode. Then highlight the settler and you can set them up as a supplier, default ‘Q’. Select the settlement to connect to and confirm. Once you do, those two settlements junk inventories are now connected. Bonus that their water and food productions are shared too, so if you had a settlement with a lot of water, they can share that overproduction with any settlement attached to the supply line. Same with food and junk inventories.

Sharing food, water and junk inventories doesn’t have to be a direct supply line. Settlement A sharing with B, and B sharing with C means A is also sharing with C through B.

Important note: You do not have direct access to other settlement inventories to deposit and withdraw from, only when you are modding, crafting or building will those shared resources be accessed for you. Example is I've put wood in Sanctuary, and go to Red Rocket. I can not pull out that wood, but when I start building, it'll show I have that wood to build with.

How to harvest extra food, water, junk and caps from settlements

Any over production of water or food will be placed into the local workbench of the settlement that is producing extra. So you can collect extra purified water or farmed food like mutfruit, corn and tatos at the local workbench. Scavenging stations produces junk to the local workbench and stores produces caps. Stores need the 2nd perk Local Leaders under the 6th Charisma column. To build the largest stores, you’ll need the 2nd perk of Cap Collector under the 1st Charisma column.

How to make caps off shops

According to the shops, you just need to make them and assign a settler to it to start generating caps in the workbench.

However, it looked like I wasn’t generating caps initially. From what I’ve read online, for shops to make money, there may need to be unassigned settlers in that settlement to “purchase” stuff at stores. It may have been coincidence, or a bug, but when I did that, it looked like I started to get caps.

Except the food store. Settler’s will gather around the food shop early morning and late evening to eat even if they are assigned duties.

Upon further playing, it looks like I get caps whether or not I have any non-assigned settlers. I just need to have the store and wait a few days. Caps generate kind of slowly.
What can settlers do in settlements

Settlers can be assigned to food, guard posts, scavenging stations, stores, or supply lines. They can also be assigned to another settlement if one is overcrowded for you or in need of more settlers, and can be assigned to specific beds.

When settlers show up, if you do nothing with them, they’ll either auto assign themselves to food or guard posts, and to unassigned beds. You will have to assign them to be a supplier, work the scavenging station or the store.

Unused companions can double as a settler

You can assign companions you aren't using to do stuff in your settlement like farming, guarding or even scavenging. Unfortunately they are really buggy when doing this and unstable so I usually just let them roam around. 

If you have some neat information about settlements that took you a while to learn about and you’d like to share, please let me know and I’ll add them here.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Working Paralysis and Overthinking


Apologies for the title. I tried to be as descript and on point of what this post is supposed to be about and this is the best I could finally put down. This won’t be a game post, but a post about trying to get projects done and finding myself not doing them. I’m talking about becoming paralyzed at the thought of doing them that I eventually just break down and do something else just because finally doing something is better than sitting around thinking about it, even though I just pushed what I wanted to do further down the road. For instance, thinking about doing this post and I started watching YouTube instead because I just wanted to feel like I’m accomplishing something.

This is a problem I’ve had for a long time. I’ve wanted to make comics, become an animator, a game developer, computer programmer, podcaster, youtuber, artist, musician, blogger, etc. This would be choice paralysis, something I’ve come to terms with a while ago and learned to fight. I’ve solved this by basically either pulling from a hat, or working down which I can possibly do at the time that’ll make me happier. So far, I’ve chosen youtuber and blogger since I’m a web developer and they are close to my skill set and feel I can accomplish with better success.

Currently, I’m still struggling with something I call “working paralysis”, where you are set to do something, but just sit there not actually doing it. This is either because I’m afraid of doing it, have low motivation, not sure how to do it, feel that no one would appreciate me doing it, too overwhelmed with the idea of doing it, etc. I had no idea for the longest time why I had this issue, and it frustrated me to no end. I thought it was just from having low motivation even though I always had the desire to complete my projects, just never could get myself to do them. Now I’ve come to realized my issue is overthinking the problem. I would sit there and try to think out every step, then what I would need, and where to start, who would like it, when would I start this, how would I start this, who I’ll need help from, what skills I’ll need, and the list goes on forever until I become paralyzed and overwhelmed that I just break down and boot up Steam. This has hurt me even doing simple tasks like brushing my teeth. I would think how long it’ll take, how much time it would take from me from what I’m currently doing, how long should I wait after eating before brushing, am I sure I don’t want to have a dessert or snack first, etc. Then I find myself even skipping an important hygienic task.

Oh man, I have all these projects that I know will be awesome, or I know that people will like if I could just start them. During the last few months, I’ve been working on ways to combat this problem. Between trying to write down all the steps so I don’t overload my mind with trying to keep them all in memory, to creating schedules of when I’d have certain parts done. I’ve gone to using punishment and reward systems, scheduled out time of when I had to work and when I got to play, and went to extremes like trying to lock away distractions until I get my work done. Some of these worked with varied success, but ultimately working paralysis is still winning.

Just Do It
However I have found something that works with far better success and found myself completing more projects. As silly as it seems, using Nike’s “Just Do It” slogan has been the greatest combatant I’ve used against working paralysis because it stops me from overthinking. This only works if I can use this solution before overthinking takes over, which is a risk. What I mean is I take enough time to determine what the first step is, and before I try to go beyond that, I start that step right away. Usually by the time I complete step one, I’ll already know what step two is by naturally seeing what’s next towards the ultimate goal. As long as I keep in mind the ultimate goal, each step will sort of help direct me to the next step until I feel I’ve reached that goal.

I haven’t conquered my working paralysis just yet, but I feel safe to say that this new work ethic is putting me on the right path. I haven’t been able to use the “Just Do It” slogan every time yet because I do have to start the overthinking it process to find what the first step is and sometimes I don’t stop. But I have seen the most success and strongest results with it, and like a muscle, will continue to work on it to get this new ethic stronger.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Elite: Dangerous - Beginner's Guide (Veteran Pilot Roles)


If you are like me, then you may have been lost or overwhelmed with what you can do in Elite: Dangerous. You may have a good idea of what you’d like to do, or just interested in seeing what all E:D can offer, but not ready to commit to something just yet. E:D is a very open game that doesn’t want to box you in, so you are free to do what you want. This can lead to decision paralysis, so I hope to help clear this up with my series of Elite: Dangerous Beginner’s Guide.

The Veteran Pilot Roles guide is the next step for those who are restless with doing only one or two things in Elite: Dangerous. I’ll go over the veteran roles by further multiclassing the basic roles and adding some definition to them to explain what these roles do. I’m forgoing the equipment breakdown because by the time you reach these roles, you will have a good feel of the equipment in this game and what you’ll want to use for these roles. Instead I’ll give some ship buildout ideas. The first rule of this guide is that it’s completely subjective. You can change the role as you see fit (I encourage you to do so) and come up with your own ideas for these roles or roles of your own, but this guide is made to get you started. You can check out the rest of the guides at the bottom, new ones will be added when they’re finished.

Advance Pilot Roles

credit: SpyTec from the Elite: Dangerous Wiki

You’ve been through a lot, and took on many roles in your years of piloting. You’re not ready to hang up the flight suit just yet because you can get paid for your knowledge. The role of a mercenary is a wide one, where you take on the highest bidders work, not matter what it is. Getting the job done and getting paid is all you’re concerned about at the end of the day.

Multiclass: The Mercenary is a mix of FIGHTER, EXPLORER, and MINER. You tend to stick around stations and checking the job board for what needs doing and then doing it. Simple as that and you are equipped to do it, either with a single ship or multiple ships specced for special roles.

Places to go: The best place for you to look for are systems with a bunch of space stations. That way you have plenty of jobs to pick and choose from. Find a good system or small cluster of systems that could use your expertise and plant yourself with your ship, or fleet of ships to get the job done.

Ship buildout: A good ship buildout for mercenaries would be the Diamondback Scout. It has a high manoeuvrability, can hold two small and two medium weapon hardpoints and 4 utility mounts. It has room for a good size cargo space for mining. It gives you room to put on a couple of dependable weapons for defense like two small gimballed pulse lasers. A high quality power distributor and 3 or 4 pips of power going to weapons will ensure you rarely run out of shooting power. That leaves room for one or two stronger medium weapons. A fixed cannon will be a good choice when you get their shields down, or gimballed multi-cannon. Double up on those, or throw on a mining laser in one of the medium slots. That can be the cheapest one because you can only collect ore so fast anyways even with a collector limpet. For utility slots, I suggest a chaff launcher since many of the enemies use gimballed weapons. This will help you when being shot at by multiple enemies. Throw on a strong shield booster, not too many because they also extend the time it takes to get shields back. For the explorer part of the build, look into a kill warrant scanner. When you are out looking to take on pirates or doing some assassination, you can use it to see if they are wanted in other systems for a bounty.

credit: Nukeguard from the Elite: Dangerous Wiki

You’re time is spent amongst the stars. You only stay on stations when you have something to unload or stock up on, otherwise you like floating out in space. The sites are why you pilot the galaxy, finding breathtaking views and sharing them with others.

Multiclass: The Voyager is a mix of FIGHTER, EXPLORER, and TRADER. You like taking long distance trips to see the sights and moving along some cargo to pay for the gas or damage done by pirates.

Places to go: Space is your destination, it’s also your journey and your starting point. As vague as that sounds, that’s pretty much where the voyager needs to go. Get a job to move some cargo to a system that’s many jumps away if you can, and make sure to click on the most economical route as that’ll be the closes thing to a scenic route.

Ship buildout: The Diamondback Explorer is a good go-to ship for exploration. It has good room for cargo, and a great unladen (no cargo and low weight) jump range when upgraded. You also have two medium hardpoints and a large hardpoint for protection if you need it. I’d look for two dependable weapons for the medium hardpoints. Remember, you can also go with small weapons as well to fit on larger hardpoints, it’ll save on weight and use less power. Either pulse lasers or multi-cannons will be good choices. The large hardpoint wouldn’t be necessary as that’s extra weight, but if you did want to go loud with some big guns, I suggest a missile rack for authority and a show of dominance, or better yet, a mine launcher for pirates that won’t give up the chase. Traveling light is good for ship’s that want to get better gas per lightyear so I wouldn’t bog myself down with utility mounts. Upgrade to a good frame shift drive and possibly get a fuel scoop if you’d rather not land too often. Since you’ll be amongst the stars, get a discovery scanner and pick up some data along the way for some extra credits.

credit: James Razor from the Elite: Dangerous Wiki

You are a person of power. People, like you, like to rule over others, controlling resource and making power plays. You control the trade routes and have no problem guarding it. Trade is what brings you money, and money is how you conduct your wars.

Multiclass: The Warlord is a mix of FIGHTER, MINER, and TRADER. Resources are where you get your money, collecting from metal rich or metallic asteroids and selling them on the market. You’re no pushover miner, though, and can show your dominance against armed pirates who may mistake you for an easy target.

Places to go: Search around for a system or two close together that has a some metal rich and/or metallic asteroid clusters or planetary rings. These have rare resources that are sought after on the open market in a high tech or tourism system.

Ship buildout: I would suggest the Python, but I have no experience with the ship yet. The stats on it look good for this kind of role; shields, armor, hardpoints, and internals. Something closer to a starting budget would be the Asp. It has good shields and armor, lots of internals for cargo space and 4 small and 2 medium hardpoints for lots of firepower. If you need to, carry a discovery scanner to look for a good system or two or check around known systems for metal rich or metallic asteroid or planetary rings. Once you find it, drop the scanner for more cargo space. You’ll need a mining laser on one of the hardpoints, suggest a small, and take some collector limpets to save yourself a lot of time and trouble. Take along a big enough refinery that has 4 or 5 bins and then arm yourself. My go-to weapon is the pulse laser. It’s dependable and cost no ammo, just needs a high end power distributor. But you should be collecting plenty of money from the rare ore that you can probably go with multi-cannons. Then load up two hard hitting weapons in the 2 medium slots. If you don’t want to pay for fuel, you can sacrifice one of your internals for a fuel scoop.

credit: DNYI from the Elite: Dangerous Wiki

You’re not a trader, you’re the trader. You deal in everything, from minerals and metals, to illegal goods and even information. You are one of the few known only as the Broker. Your services aren’t cheap and the rich or desperate know that. You know the economy, you know the politics, and you know their secrets.

Multiclass: The Broker is a mix of EXPLORER, MINER, and TRADER. Fighting isn’t your style, that’s for the hired help to deal with. You pay attention to what matters, and that’s how to make money. You like collecting rare metals and minerals, illegal goods, and information that you can sell.

Places to go: You’re always on the move, looking to collect something. Finding metal rich or metallic asteroids and planetary rings are good targets to look out for. You’ll also come across salvageable wreckage along the way that has illegal goods floating around to sell on the black market. And lastly, going from station to station to find jobs that want you to move goods or information around.

Ship buildout: The Type-6 and 7 Transporter or Type-9 Heavy are going to be your go-to ships. I’ll build out the Type-7 Transporter. These ships move slow, so you’ll want to find turret weapons to put on these babies. Either a couple of pulse laser or multi-cannons. You’ll need one hardpoint for the mining laser, and the last one for another turret or a mine launcher. Might also want to use the 4 utility mounts for some shield boosters, chaff launchers and possibly heat sink launcher or point defense turret. You can hold a lot of room in one of these babies, so use the largest compartments for cargo space and the smaller ones for things like a fuel scoop, refinery, and discovery / surface scanner. If you can, find some friends to help escort you around when you are making runs with a lot of cargo. Lastly, don’t forget collector limpets when you go out mining.

credit: TopoSolitario from the Elite: Dangerous Wiki

This is the most diverse of all the roles you can play. Short for Jack-of-all-trades Pilot. This pilot likes to do everything. From joining war efforts, to making trade runes, to scanning unexplored systems and even dealing with illegal goods. The Jack Pilot does it all.

Multiclass: The Jack Pilot is a mix of all four roles; FIGHTER, EXPLORER, MINER, and TRADER. You do everything because one activity is fun for a little while, but then you want to do something else and don’t want to be boxed into just a few options.

Places to go: Everywhere. Seriously, the jack pilot doesn’t like to stay in one spot for long. There’s an entire galaxy to visit and you only stay in a system long enough to view the sites and take part in some activities. You rarely, if ever, will work up a local faction to reach the highest jobs. You may stick to one major faction, but that isn’t guaranteed either. You’ll check out all the different signal sources you feel like stopping at and look around for anything new to do.

Ship buildout: Being a jack pilot will be hard, because you only have so much room and so many ships to choose from. My best suggestion would be a well rounded ship, either going with the Cobra or going with the larger ships like the Python or Anaconda. Sticking with the Cobra because it’s a good mid-ways ship and average stats all the way down. It has enough room for defenses, cargo space, scanners, fuel scoop and a refinery. You’ll not have enough for all the scanners, but you should be able to get the more important kill warrant and frame shift wake scanners to fill a more diverse role in the utility mounts. The mining laser will need to take up either a small or medium hardpoint, leaving you room for two dependable weapons, and a special weapon. Being a jack pilot, you’ll probably be constantly switching those out to try new combos. There’s room for a fuel scoop, refinery, discovery scanner, cargo space, and two other compartment items you can play around with. Look through the selection to see what helps you fulfill a more diverse role.

Pilot Role Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed these three pilot role guides, they were fun to make. Larger ships and hardpoints are a bit outside my familiarity, but I did the best I could with the resources out there. I do know they tend to have more issues with heat so a good heat sink launcher may be needed when you go big. If you find success using these or have come up with some roles of your own, let me know about them. I’d be interested at what others have come up with.

Remember - I am Elite: Dorkus and you can too!

Elite: Dangerous - Beginner’s Guide List
Weapon Roles