So maybe you’re wondering why there was no content last week? I’m afraid I have bad news for you. You can either remain in suspense forever, or you can listen to me bitch about health problems. The choice is yours. Spoiler: You’ll be disappointed either way.
So let’s commence with the bellyaching…
Take Me for a Spin
For the third time in a decade, I’ve found myself rendered helpless by intense vertigo. I don’t know the underlying cause, other than the vague “This sometimes happens to people over A Certain Age” answers that Google gave me. I have to say that of all the illnesses I’ve experienced, vertigo is the least miserable and most ridiculous.
Also: While researching this, I discovered that this condition is called “vertigo”. In the past I’ve always called it “dizziness”. I thought that “vertigo” had to do with fear of heights. But according to Wikipedia:
“Vertigo is a symptom where a person has the sensation of moving or of surrounding objects moving when they are not. Often it feels like a spinning or swaying movement. This may be associated with nausea, vomiting, sweating, or difficulties walking. It is typically worse when the head is moved. Vertigo is the most common type of dizziness.”
That perfectly describes how I spent a good chunk of last week. I stumbled around the house, desperately trying to mediate the argument between my eyes and inner ear regarding which way was up. My inner ear was in the wrong, but I’m used to relying on that data to keep myself upright. I spent almost a full day listing to the left and walking into the left side of door frames every time I tried to pass through. It was all sort of embarrassing and vaguely slapstick.
By Thursday I just gave up and started crawling around on all fours. Falling over isn’t dangerous when you’re already that close to the ground. Just to keep things weird, I spent the next few days running a low temperature and falling asleep every two hours like Bilbo.
This is just as debilitating as other types of periodic illness like the flu. I didn’t get any work done and I spent most of the time in bed. But unlike the flu, it’s not actively painful. A flu is a miserable thing to endure, and you spend every waking moment wishing you could fall asleep again. But with vertigo I could keep myself comfortable by lying on my side, closing my eyes, and keeping very still. It gets boring, sure. But I’ll take that over the torments of a chest cold any day.
The other curious thing about these episodes is how quickly they can happen. With a normal illness, you usually get a bit of a warning. You’ll feel run-down and ache for a day or so before the symptoms get serious. But the onset of vertigo is nearly instant. On Tuesday morning I was playing Saints Row The Third: Remastered. It went like this:
- Ew. I’m feeling a little dizzy. That’s weird.
- Oof. This is pretty bad. Maybe I shouldn’t be sitting in the dark with all of these explosions going off in my face? I should turn on an extra light.
- Okay, the light didn’t help. What’s going on here? Am I getting a migraine or something? I’ll just look away from the screen to see if I have bright spots in front of my eyes.
- WAAAAAA! Okay, turning my head to the side is bad. I should face forward again.
- WAAAAAA! Okay, turning my head at all is bad. Am I having a stroke? Is this what a stroke feels like?
- Actually, the entire room is spinning. Oh, it’s this dizziness crap again. Okay. I need to lie down RIGHT NOW.
After that, I bounced off the door frames as I staggered into the bedroom and fell face-first into the pillow. It was just ten minutes from the first moment of dizziness to complete incapacitation.
Wait, Saints Row the Third Was Remastered!?
If you haven’t heard about it yet, it’s probably because the remaster is currently an Epic Games exclusive. Boo.
So what do I think of it? It’s fine. There are some mild annoyances. The game doesn’t like it when you alt-tab away, and it makes my entire machine really unresponsiveIf you try to type anything, the characters will appear at the rate of once a second. Makes the computer basically unusable outside of the game. while it’s running. I notice some of the customization options for cars / clothing have been changed in questionable waysYou can no longer make clothes properly black. Just dark-ish grey. Also, the Matrix-style sunglasses are now just regular eyeglasses?. There are some weird collision issues now that I never encountered in the originalThere’s some sort of metal seam at the end of bridges. Maybe they existed in the original. They’re flush with the ground and look reasonable enough, but they have this odd 1 in 50 chance of flaking out and behaving as though they’re a shin-high barrier. I’ve tripped over them and sometimes my motorcycle will collide with them, sending me over the handlebars.. If you’ve never played the game before, then it’s great to get the game+graphical update+all DLC for just $30. But if you own the original then it’s hard to recommend.
The Playstation 5 Reveal
It’s hard to get a sense of what people think of this thing. In this age of flippant post-post-post ironic hipster anti-sarcasm, I can’t tell how many of the jokes on Reddit are people making fun of the machine because they love it and how many are making fun of it because they think it’s ridiculous. The “Ha ha it looks like a wi-fi router” joke lasted a few days, but then it evolved into a complex series of sub-memes and I’ve completely lost the plot.
Personally, I love it. The Age of Black Cubes lasted a little too long for my taste, and I think a splash of white is a nice change of pace.
Of course, it’s really hard to say more without knowing the price. Is this going to be another machine that’s priced for the hardcore, or a machine that’s irresistible to the masses? I suppose the first is more likely. If the price was low, they probably would have announced it by now. I suspect they’re trying to get us excited for the device and attached to the idea of owning one before they deliver the gut-punch MSRP.
The lineup of announced titles looks mostly good. I’ll talk about them later this week.
 If you try to type anything, the characters will appear at the rate of once a second. Makes the computer basically unusable outside of the game.
 You can no longer make clothes properly black. Just dark-ish grey. Also, the Matrix-style sunglasses are now just regular eyeglasses?
 There’s some sort of metal seam at the end of bridges. Maybe they existed in the original. They’re flush with the ground and look reasonable enough, but they have this odd 1 in 50 chance of flaking out and behaving as though they’re a shin-high barrier. I’ve tripped over them and sometimes my motorcycle will collide with them, sending me over the handlebars.
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Fixing Match 3
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Video Compression Gone Wrong
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