The Great Northern War Is Coming, Will Set Another World Record

Massive EVE Online Battle Destroys Nearly $300,000 Worth of Spaceships

        Two years ago, factions within the EVE online began a war that was on a scale previously unheard of in video games. It was such a grand scale that soon enough even major news carriers such as CNN and MSNBC were running stories on the conflict. Over the course of a few days over $300,000 worth of ships were destroyed, tens of thousands of players were destroyed, and it completely changed the landscape of the game for the years that followed. Since then, things have been relatively quite in the EVE community with The Imperium, a corporation coalition made up of some 40,000 players pretty much reigning supreme for the last 2 years.

Yep, looks like the banner of an evil empire.

        Their seemingly endless pool of resources and combined with their size made it so that they were able to basically bully the factions around them into copulation, with no one strong enough to directly stand up to them. Needless to say, as they continued to maintain their stranglehold on their sector of space The Imperium made plenty of enemies. Along with that they have had some defections over the past few months, as some internal strife has led to certain corporations defecting from The Imperium over to one of the various groups that has aligned against them. These other groups, who used to have plenty of fighting amongst themselves, have suddenly began coming together under the old adage of “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.” It’s seems that they have begun to hate The Imperium even more than they hated eachother, and so the Money Badger Coalition has been born. There have already been a couple of skirmishes between the two, but so far all indicators point to a growing conflict in the future that should dwarf the previous Great War from two years ago. It’s definitely something worth following here over the next couple of weeks, as these massive online battles have become very popular in the days of Twitch and other streaming services where people can follow the action throughout the day. Needless to say when this powder keg does eventually go off, it is going to set a new bar for online gaming warfare.

-CDL

If you want to see a video of the skirmishes that have previously happened, click here.

For a quick video summing up what has led up to the Northern War, click here.

Angry Programmer Deletes 17 Lines of Code, Literally Breaks the Internet

        Coding can be a very finicky business. That isn’t really news to those in the industry, however that didn’t stop many companies in Silicon Valley from getting a nasty surprise last week when an upset employee had a falling out with npm, Inc. and deleted all of the code that he had written for them as he walked out the door. Typically that would not have been all that big of a deal had his code not been currently being used by Javascript users at Facebook, Netflix, Spotify, and dozens of other companies at the time. Long story short, it immediately broke the builds of thousands of programmers over the course of a few minutes. Granted, they started developing workarounds almost immediately and were able to mitigate the damage in the long run, but it still shook things up enough that people began to question why the source code was so easily deleted by one person. For more information about the story, as well as the drama leading up to the fallout head on over to arstechnica to read the full article.

-CDL

Triton: Human Gills or Lucrative Hoax?

Triton Artificial Gills Scam

        Triton underwater breather company has been making waves in recent days (shutup I know it’s a bad pun) after raising over $700,000 through an Indiegogo campaign over just it’s first few days. Their claim to fame is that they have created a revolutionary new underwater breather that will allow users to stay underwater for extended periods of time without the use of bulky SCUBA equipment. Obviously if this new tech works as advertised, the military, scientific, and recreational applications would be huge. They say that they have the technology, they have a decent concept, and now they have some money, so why aren’t we all lining up to shell out ridiculous sums of cash to swim around a la the Jedi in A Phantom Menace? Well, unfortunately unless Triton has somehow secretly made some breakthroughs in both energy efficiency and pulling oxygen out of solution (and we are talking jumps science forward 30 or so years kind of breakthroughs) it’s just not something that can be done with today’s technology.

        Before we dive further (ok that one was an accident) into the issues with the science, there are quite a few other red flags surrounding the project with regards to the presentation of the project and the lack of credibility of the business as a whole. The biggest issue that immediately jumps out is the fact that their claims have had absolutely ZERO third party verification. Basically although Triton says they have developed this amazing tech that can do all these things, no one outside of their company has verified it. Basically the equivalent of me saying I have created a perpetual motion machine. I can say it all day long, and it may even be true, but until I can get someone else to verify it, it don’t mean shit. So yeah, the fact that people are throwing money at these guys without any actual proof of concept at this point is dubious at best but whatever, it’s not my money I guess.

        So, now that we have gone through the issues listed above, lets get into the actual science problems. These are all described in-depth in this article by gear junkie, but it can basically be summed up in three parts. One: in order to get enough oxygen to survive, you are going to have to process about 46.1 liters of water per MINUTE through the mask. That means you are going to have to be pumping like a motherfucker to get it all in there. Take a look at that mask. See any big old pumps on there? I don’t either. Ok so let’s pretend that the pumps are invisible, just for the sake of argument. You are going to need a serious battery in order to power the pumps to move the water to filter the oxygen to not drown. Also contained in breather would need to be a air compression chamber to hold the air before it is breathed in, and it would need some type of regulator to control the volume that is going to be moved in and out of your lungs. All of this they claim is contained in the small container that covers the nose and mouth. Yeah. Right. Not buying it. The fact of the matter is that their claims are just too grand to be true, even if it sounds like something they think we will be able to do in the near future. So what are they going to do with the $700,000 then? Who knows. Probably enjoy the ride and the notoriety while they can until December rolls around and they still don’t have the promised product from the videos. You can do alot with $700,000, just not create a physics breaking  underwater breather.

-CDL

EVE Online: A GeekGoneRogue Odyssey PT. 2

2016.03.28.01.17.20

        Mining… ISK… Mining… ISK… After one week with EVE I can sum up my experience in those two words. That’s not to say that I’m not enjoying it, because I am. As a matter of fact, I am enjoying it a helluva lot more than I thought I would. It’s therapeutic in a way, the routine of mining out various ores and trying to turn them into profit . It’s definitely a grind, my tiny little Venture out there for hours at a time, firing my mining lasers at various rocks floating in the vast emptiness. It’s addicting though, watching my wallet slowly fill one transaction at a time. I am currently sitting on about 35,000,000 ISK, a couple of basic mining barges, a destroyer, a freighter, a cruiser, some frigates, and other miscellaneous ships. I’m sure that there are veteran EVE players out there laughing at this paltry sum of resources, but to me it’s a big deal. The last few times I tried to play this game I didn’t even come up with half of that so I am feeling pretty accomplished. I am also about 3 days away from a new mining barge which should really ramp up my production.

2016.03.28.02.45.04 (2)

2 Days 11 Hours and 32 Minutes from a my next ship upgrade (and yes I know my character looks like a heroin addict)

        My biggest game changer that took place over the last week is I took the time to join up with a corporation in hopes of finding some more experienced players to offer me some guidance when I hit that wall of having no idea what to do once I get past that introductory phase. Thus entered the application process which I was completely unprepared for after playing games like WoW and FFXIV where people just want you to join, send you an invite and boom you are in. This shit was crazy. I mean I know that the EVE community takes this shit seriously but filling out actual applicaitons, having multiple rounds on interviews and a vote-in approval process it took more steps for me to get into the Corporation than it did to get my first job out of college. I wish I was kidding about that last part but unfortunately it’s true. Anyways, I am now a proud member of an up and coming Corp made up of about 40 players, ranging from 5+ years experience to only  a few months online. Currently I am the only total noob in their midst, but so far everyone has been incredibly welcoming and helpful. I am beginning to understand that the only way that I am gonna be able to really make it in this game is to latch myself onto some of the serious veterans and absorb as much as I can, even if that means I am going to spend dozens of hours mining the required materials to build our corporation’s new station.

        I am hoping to get a little more brave with my new barge this week and travel to some less secure zones in hopes of bigger and badder rocks to mine. I am also going to start trying to invest in some of the better blueprints I can find in my skill level so that I can divide my time between gathering ore for the Corp and using it on my own production runs to start making some extra money on the side. I am also planning on loading my cruiser up with as many drones as it can handle and sending it off into the angry wilds to see if I can get some decent combat experience. So look forward to that update coming later this week fair readers. Until then it’s back to mining… ISK… Mining…. ISK…

-CDL

If you want to check out our noob’s journey from day one, click here!

Microsoft’s New AI Released on Twitter for One Day, Immediately Turns Racist, Sexist, and Fascist

tayandyou tay tweets racist funny

        This is why we can’t have nice things. Microsoft created a new AI chatbot named Tay and released it on Twitter yesterday in order to “test and improve Microsoft’s understanding of conversational language”. True to form, the masses on Twitter immediately taught it what conversation’s out in cyberspace are really like, with hilariously disastrous results. Withing 16 hours of being released, the AI bot was pro Hitler, racist against Mexicans and Blacks, pro Trump (and his damn wall), and pretty much just a well rounded mix of bullshitery. There was even some “9/11 was an inside job” to top it all off, because where would an internet bigot be without some truther thrown in?  Below are a few samples of the kind of nonsense that was going on throughout the ordeal.

gas

microsoft ai bot tayandyou

swag alert

Damn Tay, you crazy

        As a (not surprising) update to the story, Microsoft has since silenced the rogue program, quickly deleting all of the racist tweets and tweaking Tay’s learning program. I’m actually pretty dumbfounded that a company so deep in the Tech industry didn’t see something like this coming. Spend 10 minutes skimming through the comments section of any decent website and you will see that this is pretty much standard conversation online. I’m already looking forward to Tay 2.0 Supreme Genocidal Edition

-CDL

Update: Microsoft has since taken Tay offline in order to make more drastic adjustments, releasing this statement earlier. “The AI chatbot Tay is a machine learning project, designed for human engagement. It is as much a social and cultural experiment, as it is technical. Unfortunately, within the first 24 hours of coming online, we became aware of a coordinated effort by some users to abuse Tay’s commenting skills to have Tay respond in inappropriate ways. As a result, we have taken Tay offline and are making adjustments.”

EVE Online: A GeekGoneRogue Odyssey

        EVE Online is my white whale. It is one of those upper echelon games with a barrier to entry so high, it still remains out of reach for many the casual gamer. It’s a grind. It’s calculated. It’s a bitch really, and for about 8 years now it has been a constant dark spot in my gamer’s resume. I have tried 4 times to get into it, and within 2  weeks each and every time the game has chewed me up and spat me out. I would uninstall the game with fury as another one of my ridiculously expensive (to me at the time, the noob with no isk) was destroyed and left as just another hunk of space garbage. There was no direction, no helpful breadcumbs of quest giving NPC’s to tell me how to progress my character. Then, after my account was once again disabled and a few months would go by EVE would start creeping it’s way into my mind again. It’s not surprising really, it is a game that has won awards by the truckload  since it’s release back in 2003 and it is still going strong to this day. Truthfully the game has some of the most dedicated and loyal players outside of a WoW convention. Seriously check out the “This is EVE” video that popped up a couple of years ago. Sure it was put together by the guys who make the game so obviously it’s going to show off the absolute best parts of the game but still, that shit is intense. That is something I want to be a part of but damn if I can figure out how to actually get there.

My game is currently alot of me sitting alone in open space as opposed to the awesome fleet action shown in the first picture.

        This brings me to today. I’m going back in again! This time I am going to document my experience in an attempt to actually make myself stick with the game. I am going to try to completely immerse myself in it for the next 30 days and see what I look like on the other side. I’m going to attempt to do it all, join a faction, group up with other players in a corporation, whatever I can do to say I finally gave it my best shot. At the end of the 30 days I feel like I will have at least played enough to have a solid opinion of the game as opposed to just the surface skimmed view I had previously. So wish me luck fellow geeks out there, feel free to come along with me on my newest EVE Odyssey!

-CDL

It’s All Fun and Games Until Someone Kills The Dog Companion

        Dogs are awesome. Big dogs, small dogs, fast dogs, lazy dogs, they are all just pretty great. Obviously, I’m a dog guy. I have two of them and although at times they drive me absolutely batshit crazy, at the end of the day I have no regrets. They make me happy by thinking I am just the greatest thing in the world. It caters to the narcissist in me I guess, my future kids are going to have a helluva time living up to the “hey guy I am so pumped you are home from work” precedent that has been set before them.

It doesn’t look like it in the picture but they are SO psyched to see me.

        The fact that people become way too attached to their pets is something that modern movie and game developers clued in on quite some time ago. Looking back through mainstream media, there is a solid track record of dog companions over the last 10 years. I Am Legend, Fallout, Fable, Metal Gear Solid, and many others have inserted a dog as a protagonist’s steadfast companion through whatever evils may come. A dog doesn’t require any complicated backstory or any step by step relationship building. Everything is already known the second it shows up on screen. Man’s best friend, your ride or die. This guy is going to be at your side, ready to take a bullet for you at a moment’s notice. It is an innate instinctual attachment that comes from owning a dog and having been around them my whole life. Dogs are ride or die. Over the years as AI and tech have gotten better, they are even becoming more realistic in the way that they interact with both the player and with the other characters.

Seriously, they have become so realistic that every time one showed up on screen my Golden was very confused at how that tiny puppy got into the TV. How meta.

        Along with the new advancements in companion interaction comes a side effect that I am still not in any way prepared to handle is the way that companions realistically are injured or even die onscreen these days. There is an unwritten rule when it comes to the audience, especially in cinema, that says “no matter what happens to the human characters, the dog doesn’t die, period. It is a quick and easy way to lose the viewer, real quick. I can sit through anything without batting an eye, murder, torture, rape, abuse, whatever as long as it is happening to a person. Not that it doesn’t affect me, because it certainly does, but it doesn’t push me to my limit or ruin my experience in any way. That probably says something about how twisted my mind has gradually become due to the increased levels of violence and brutality that are thrown in front of it very day but hey, that is another article for another day. The point is that as long as something happens to a human, it doesn’t really register as a disturbing experience. That scene in I Am Legend though, when Will Smith has to kill the German Shepard? Holy Shit. Devastating. Same thing goes for Fallout 4. When I played the previous Fallout games it was always a treat to find Dogmeat and have him roll with me for the rest of the game, taking out Supermutants and scumbags alike. Sure, I had to restart a save about four times a playthrough because that crazy little bastard would get himself killed, but it was worth it to have him at my side.

        That’s one of the big improvements that I was looking forward to when Bethesda announced that in Fallout 4 Dogmeat would be unkillable. What they didn’t say is that if he was injured he would immediately collapse, paralyzed from the hips down, crying and crawling his way to you. What the actual fuck? NO. Every time it happened I would find myself running through a hail of bullets doing everything I could to make certain that I got him healed up and back on his feet as fast as possible. Something about those sound effects and visuals just gets to me. I finally had to just send him back to a settlement and pick a new companion because I just couldn’t handle that shit. Same thing when D-Dog gets killed. This brings me to probably the most traumatic dog experience I’ve ever had in a video game which happened yesterday in The Division. The streets of quarantined Manhattan are populated with terrorists, citizens, and at this point in the story tons of stray dogs.  Seriously they are everywhere. You can even watch them poop!

Really. 

So here I was, walking around on the street when I hear the tell-tale beep beep BEEP that a hidden bomb is about to blow my ass sky high. I immediately do a dive-roll to get out of the way and hear the explosion go off behind me. I turned around and was greeted to the scene of a random stray dog who had happened to be wandering in the area, lying dead and twitching on the ground after having taken the brunt of the blast. I just stood there for a few minutes, feeling the guilt of killing a random NPC canine. I had just mowed through about 200 humans, many of which I enjoyed filling full of as many bullets as possible and yet this one pup’s death totally crushed me. I’m getting depressed just thinking about it again. Maybe that means I’m a softy. Maybe it means I am just too attached to my current dogs. Who knows? Maybe a psychologist. What I know is that as long as I am playing a game with a canine companion one of the first things I am going to do is befriend it, and then have my emotions nut-punched every time something bad happens to it. The cycle repeats!

-CDL

Destiny vs The Division, There Can Only Be One!

        It’s been almost a  week since the launch of the Division and now that the initial server crashes have abated, I have finally had some time to sit down and get into the meat of the game. It’s one that was a LOOOONG time coming after years of delays (it was originally supposed to be a PS4 launch title afterall), and that I had some high hopes for  and I am happy to say that so far it has completely delivered. It has a well thought-out open world, great gameplay, an interesting story, and a few outstanding ideas when it comes to online multiplayer. Although it does stand on it’s own legs due to these new ideas, and the fact that it is an MMO shooter, due to it’s numerous delays it launched in the shadow of Destiny, Bungie’s award winning FPS MMO that launched in 2014. Destiny has been very divisive among the gaming community, with most people very hot or cold with how they feel about the new franchise. There are still millions of people who are signing on to Destiny daily or at least weekly in order to grind up for the newest piece of gear, however there are just as many fans who ditched the title over the last two years, complaining of the lack of new content, grindy level progression, and uninspired campaign story.

Destiny does have some style though

After spending extensive hands-on time with both titles, I decided to give a break down of some key factors showing the difference between the two and to come up with a final verdict of which new age MMO is the better of the two.

Gameplay:

Destiny- If destiny had one thing going for it right out of the gate, it was slick and flashy gameplay. Running, jumping, flying through the air, Bungie took the speed and the crisp gunplay of it’s earlier titles and put them to great use, giving the player a sense of speed and style that leads to some awesome gun battles. Unfortunately, other than the shooting, Destiny brings almost nothing else to the table. Once you get through the incredibly brief (and VERY unsatisfying story) you are going to be repeating the same gunfights over and over on varying degrees of difficulty, and they do start to really grind on you after awhile.

The Division- Unlike it’s space sci-fi counterpart, The Division is a little more grounded in it’s gunplay. Fights are more tactical and slow paced, with players relying more on cover and trading fire than just running and going through the angry horde. There is also a good mix of story missions, random encounters, and the Dark zone to keep gameplay fresher for longer. That’s not to say that things don’t get a little repetitive after awhile, but with the unpredictability of the Dark Zone you can be pretty much guaranteed that you are going to get a new experience every time.

Winner- The Division

Progression

Destiny- First off I will say that for the first 20 levels, Destiny is a very straight up MMO affair. Your get xp, grow a level, stats increase, and unlock a new skill. Rinse and repeat. Anyone familiar with a modern MMO should be very used to this process by now. However, once passing level 20 things get a little hazy. Leveling from that point forward is made up of getting higher “light level” gear. This really threw off some players for awhile, and still doesn’t have the most definitive guide to what was going to increase your level or not. I found myself putting on and taking off different pieces and just seeing what it did to my level without ever having a clear idea what was going to happen beforehand. They did attempt to work on this when the expansion was released, however it probably should have been a bit clearer to begin with. Destiny does have a interesting progression system for weapons, where some have VERY powerful talents that can only be released through using them for long periods of time. I will say it was quite satisfying to take a rare weapon that wasn’t all that special at the beginning and leveling it up to a badass death machine over a few weeks.

The Division- Once again, for the main game pretty standard. Kill things, level up. However, unlike other MMO’s your skills actually have nothing to do with your actual level, instead you unlock your skills by doing enough missions for a specific faction in your base to get resources and to upgrade that part of the facility. On top of this, there are actually two types of leveling you are doing throughout your playthrough, your regular level and your dark zone level. Dark zone level progression can only been done in the dark zone (duh) and is the only way to unlock the best items and weapons in the game.

Winner: Draw

Story:

Destiny- I’m not gonna lie, this one is going to be pretty subjective. The Destiny story sucked. The expansion’s have been pretty good, but the problem is is that they were just a little too late. It was like bringing out a decent desert when the main course was confusing and left you starving at the end, it’s nice but kind of missed the point. When I finished the last story mission on Destiny for the first time I remember looking at my buddy and asking the question “wait that was it? That was Destiny? Made  by the same people who made Halo???” It’s pretty damn disappointing. They have great writers there at Bungie and had a ridiculous amount of time and funds to get the job done and yeah… they just didn’t. I am sure there were people out there who may have gotten something out of it, but if you take a quick look at the forums online one of the number one complaints since the release was just how weak and unfulfilling (not to mention kind of confusing) the main campaign of the game is.

The Division- Well I’m going to be honest, the game has only been out a week and I have been spending a TON of time in the Dark Zone and on random encounters so I am not as deep into the story with the Division as I was at this point when I played Destiny (again there is just alot more to do in the Division), but I can say that even just a week in I am much much more invested in the goings-on of quarantined New York than I ever was in the Destiny campaign. Terrorists, money, biological warfare, these are things that aren’t even original but they are something that anyone can get behind pretty quick. Now I can’t guarantee that it is going to last throughout the playthrough but for right now I am going to have to give the Division the preliminary win.

Winner: The Division (for now)

Multiplayer

Destiny- Multiplayer is split into competitive (The Crucible) and dungeons (Vault of Glass, etc). The crucible is something that is overall done well, and one should expect nothing less from the group that brought us the incredible multiplayer experiences of the Halo universe. Fast. Really, REALLY fast is how I would sum it up. I have never quite been able to get in a rhythm in the Crucible and it comes down to the fact that I am just not that good at it yet. The dungeons on the other hand are very well thought out, and are a good balance between the brutal hardcore raids of many MMO’s out there, while still being accessible enough that the average player can take it down with some practice and a decent group. That being said there is no matchmaking or groupfinder aspect in Destiny, aka “if you don’t have friends playing you are shit outta luck kid” for most people wanting to take part in Raids. Unless you are using an outside website to find premade groups, you are pretty much on your own. It’s stupid. This day in age when so many MMO’s do groupfinding so well, it just seems lazy by the developers part. I genuinely wanted to give Destiny the win in this category, but with this kind of bullshit I just can’t. Not when something is flawed on such a basic level.

The Division- 4 Player co-op is something the Tom Clancy game’s do well, and the Division is no exception. The enemy scaling is good, and I have found that (especially in higher difficulties) if you don’t have at least a decent battle plan going into a big firefight you can find yourself overwhelmed in a hurry. Not only that, but I have rarely felt a tension like I have been lately in the Dark Zone when myself and my group are loaded down with loot and come upon another player group. Do we fight? Do we cooperate? Do we turn and go our separate ways? The fact that all communication can be heard by all of the players in the vicinity means that you have no way of scheming in the moment and are going to have to act and react as quick as you can. It’s a blast and even when I have been on the “oh shit there goes my loot” end of a shotgun, I have always thought the system was fair, real, and fun. Good job Ubisoft.

Winner: The Division

Well there you have it guys, that is my personal breakdown of the two recent shoot-em-up MMO’s that have been released in the last couple of years. Overall, it’s no question, The Division is just a superior product. Granted they also had 2 extra years development time and were able to see the feedback that people left for Destiny so it would kind of be a shame if they didn’t win. That being said, neither game is bad and I have put in my fair share of hours having a good time in Destiny, but I have a feeling especially now that I have my hands on The Division my days flying around outer space with my warlock are completely over. Now, back to the Dark Zone!

Winner

-CDL

I’m sure that there are those out there who disagree with some of the above statements, if that’s you, let’s here your opinion in the comments!

An Update From GeekGoneRogue

Hello all,

First off, I wanted to just say thank you to everyone who has been following geekgonerogue.com recently. It has completely blown me away over the last couple of months that we have received so much support and all of the new followers that we have been picking up. It has been a fun project and one that we hope to continue to grow in the future. That being said, we have definitely been slacking this month with regards to updates and content, and for that I am sorry. It has been a crazy time in my life with regards to some family issues and some career issues that have somewhat taken over all of my free time. The good news is, it looks like everything is starting to settle back down now and I am going to make a serious effort over the next few weeks to make up for all of the time that was lost. Fingers crossed nothing else crazy happens in the near future, but even if it does, I just want to say thanks for hanging in there and bearing with me. Please continue to check in to what we have going on and give us feedback on what you think we can do to make both the site and our content better.

Also, I wanted to provide an update on what we will have coming up this month so that hopefully it will give everyone something to look forward to. Hopefully before April we will have a new site design, we know what we have been rocking for the last few months is VERY basic and definitely needs a facelift and we are going to be making it a priority. Starting the end of this week we will have our first impressions/review in progress for The Division, along with our normal articles and stories. We are also looking into some GeekGoneRogue merchandise to be rolling out here shortly, as well as a weekly podcast that should be rolled out by the end of the month. Long story short, there will be quite a bit of new content coming your way in the days to come, and we hope you like what we are rolling out. That is all for today, and again, thanks to all my Geeks out there for keeping us going!

-CDL