D4 phun 5tuph
This evening, i came home to a very happy thing. A big, heavy white box with the Jelly Belly logo. My candy had come.
$50 worth of Jelly Bellies, along with a couple of little samplers - and I'm sure I got more than I ordered. But I'm not complaining. Two big 1kg bags of 49 flavors, three bags of the 10 sours, the Tropical Punch mix, the Fruit Bowl mix, and the flavor I've waited so long to try: 3 bags of Jalapeño flavor Jelly Bellies.
When they say these things taste like Jalapeños, they ain't shittin' you. In fact, they taste like chipotle pepper sauce - one of my favorite peppers. And for good reason. They're made with Jalapeño pureé and Jalapeño powder. The real McCoy. Damn good stuff. Not one bit sweet, like you'd think, but plenty peppery - quite an unexpected thing when you're eating candy. Oh, that $50 I spent was well worth it.
Another $50 I spent already I still think is worth it. Though, I'm seriously confused as to what problem everyone is having. From my staff page, you can see that I have a rather beefy system, so like some of the other staff, I can play Halo at high resolutions and still maintain high framerates - so I can't really blame my bad play style on my computer. (Oh, God, Dad's still eating all my Jelly Bellies....) And I have DSL - crappy, but it's broadband - so I can't really blame that, either. And, I think others could say the same. But now, after HBO-kingpin's comments, and the deletion of his post at the Gearbox forums, everyone seems intent on blaming everything on the 1.03 patch. Honestly, I don't understand why everyone is having trouble with it. My only complaint is how much bandwidth it uses. Sure, you can play on a 56k, but you can't even host a 2-player server for yourself and a friend on it. That aside, everyone is complaining about the new player prediction implementation in the netcode, and complaining about how Gearbox's anti-TK efforts aren't enough.
Here's my two cents and some extra change:
Regarding teamkilling: Tribes and Tribes 2 implemented a voting system that allows for players on the server to vote people to get banned. I think that Gearbox should at least look into implementing something similar that works at the CD-key level. Ban the assinine children from the server and record that banning with the master server. Then, when enough servers ban that CD-key (for example, 3, 4, or 5), that CD-key should be banned from all servers, including the master server. Of course, it should allow for appeal, but this will force most teamkillers to stop teamkilling or buy a new copy of the game - which will discourage them from teamkilling. Good for Bungie/Gearbox/Microsoft. Good for the players. Those immature brats shouldn't be playing games anyway if they can't learn to play cooperatively.
Regarding player prediction and reduced leading: A lot of people are complaining that they can't hit anything with the sniper rifle or pistol any more. A few are saying they're better than ever with the pistol but can't use a sniper either. I personally think that some, if not most, are just mentally blowing things out of proportion - "This is a new patch; other people are having trouble with the new patch; I'm having trouble; I must be having trouble with the new patch!" - I think this path of logic is misleading people into believing they are having trouble with something that isn't really a problem for them. Personally, I have seen little, if anything, change with regards to my perception of the netcode. Yet Mhaddy and Evergreen are both complaining about the lag causing them more grief than before - because of the netcode. I would contend that they are mentally letting their skill slip because of their bad perception of the patch - due partly to kingpin's comments. Of course, I may be wrong.
Regarding performance and stability: Tru7h is using (as I understand it) a dedicated PC for Halo - he doesn't use it for much else, and it remains powered down most of the day. Yet he consistently experiences hanging and freezes with the new patch. It may just be a driver conflict. It may be that the game's stability has gone down the toilet. I don't know. I'm keeping my mind open for now. Personally, I've expereinced no exceptions and have actually seen an increase in performance. Of course, it may be because I have specifically configured this system for optimal performance. (And it certainly has nothing to do with my overclocked video card. ~_^ ) Honestly, I'm surprised that I'm having so few problems.
Regarding the supposed 33ms increment in pings: That's a load of bull. Yes, they do tend to cluster near 33ms steps, but they certainly do not increment by 33ms as everyone is saying. I'm probably just picking nits, but i regularly see pings of 120, 20, 55, 252, etc. 33 is uncommon, 66 even more so. i see 67 more than some numbers, but they certainly do not stop in steps of 33ms. Stop complaining about something that doesn't happen people!
In conclusion (at last!), I think that Gearbox has done well, considering they didn't write this game. I praise Gearbox for trying so hard to make us fans happy. Yet, I am somewhat disappointed that despite the resources Microsoft has undoubtedly provided, they have not adequately tested the new patch. They could have done better, but people are not nearly as patient as they should be.
Programming is not easy. Programming isn't a 10-step process. Programming is a delicate art. It may be easy to learn (like the Anime drawing style), but like art, it is nearly impossible to master. Please. Have patience with the developers. If you want heads to roll, then attack the marketing department. They're no smarter than those immature script kiddie babies that teamkill on the servers.
Don't take it out on the devs.