Talk Amongst Yourselves

Talk Amongst Yourselves

Welcome to Talk Amongst Yourselves, AKA ‘TAY’. Organise meet-ups, talk about games, talk about anything you want! Consider this the unofficial Kotaku Australia forum. Become a TAYbie today and join the best and friendliest community on the internet!


  • Morning TAY! How was everyone’s weekend?

    I didn’t get to start the Witcher 3 – Was busy building barriers to stop our guinea pigs getting under couches/fridges/cupboards most of Saturday, and at the beach yesterday. Had an hour or so last night, but just ended up playing a game of Dota since I was sure I would not sleep if I started a new game.

    So yeah… 1 week left until I head to Hong Kong for a holiday. Hype!

  • Mornin’ TAY, first game of hockey for the season done and dusted without any injuries, except the standard first-game-of-the-season-too-sore-to-move-anything soreness.

  • Good morning everyone.
    I was so tired last night, I went to bed early. I slept all night through but I have no idea why I was so tired.
    I played twilight princess and lost an hour of game by choice after I noticed a secret passage when lighting all four lanterns. I couldn’t put it out so a restart was needed. Next day, after about 40 minutes of getting to where I was, I was about to save after the next battle, when my Mum accidentally turned off the wii U by switching off the power board.
    I haven’t touched it since.

  • I think I’m actually really liking getting up stoopid early to go to the gym. Case in point, I’ve started getting up at 4:50am, getting to the gym around 5:20, doing what I need to do, home again by 6:30 and out the door to work at 7:30.

    I’m just relieved now at work that it’s all out of the way, and I don’t have to get home and go out again unless I want to.

    • Nice one! Waking up that early just make sure to get a full nights rest after an active day; I’m planning on starting a similar timed routine later this week 🙂

      • I’m hopfully going to keep cranking away and get into a routine of doing this 3 days a week, though I did have to buy some shakes so I could have something quick to eat before going, otherwise I feel my strength sapping out way too quickly.

  • Morning TAY. Had a pretty decent weekend. About a month back we had arranged a separate guys night/girl’s night for the group, presumably so everyone could go out without any lingering partners or whatever tying people down. What I discovered is that with no girls around, guys tend to be pretty dull, at least, the guys I know.
    The girl’s night, from what my wife tells me, was far more lively and interesting. I met up with her at 11 as people who needed to take public transport were leaving (an error in the infoline website made them think the trains stopped shortly after midnight instead of continuing until nearly 2) which is when the glam rock cover band started playing, so I still had a fairly decent night out.
    I got bored with doing sidequests in Far Cry 4 and decided to push through the story. Now I feel compelled to hunt all the collectibles and do all the side content anyway before moving onto something else.

    I wish I’d realised a lot sooner that one fire arrow will (eventually) kill a machine gun heavy. Wasted so many explosive arrows and grenades on those guys.

    • Yeah I think what happens after guys stay in a committed relationship for a while the mantle of planning things to do automatically goes to the mrs. We’re just a very dull gender =P

      • My wife was just astonished that, because the girls mostly talked about dicks, guys when left to their own devices don’t automatically talk about boobs or compare sex notes.

      • I don’t think I’ve ever had that mantle. Unless I just didn’t realise it before those two committed relationships I had worked extremely fast on stealing it away from me all those years ago 😛

  • Morning, TAY.
    Our download speeds are at a crawl, even though download quota reset on Friday.
    The thing is, though, we haven’t gone over the limit, yet the speed just limps along.
    We usually get between 4 to 4.5 MbPS, yet it’s only at 0.8 MbPS.

  • Hello, TAY.

    I recently got around to playing Convoy, which I kickstarted a long time ago. It was released ages ago. It’s really good.

    It’s a really great Rogue-Lite. Kinda like if Mad Max Fury Road got a game tie-in that ended up similar to FTL. You should all get it.

    • Convoy is on my to do list, I can’t even remember if I’ve bought it or not. Had so much other stuff to play I could own it and not realise.

  • Caved and picked up The Division last week. Finally got a chance to play it over the weekend.

    Turns out it’s the time waster I’ve been looking for.

  • Hey guys,

    I’m not actually dead, believe it or not. I know I’m hella late to the party buuuuut anyone playing The Division on PS4?

        • Yes but I hate 3rd person shooting.
          Also I’ve heard the story/ characters and end game is possibly even more non existent than Destiny.
          Also Ubisoft. Haven’t liked anything they’ve done since Far Cry 2.

    • I’m on PS4 mate, Steed1080 if you want to co-op a bit.

      I wasn’t going to get it, then I got it on PC (from steam) then I got a refund and got it on PS4 so I can co-op (none of my steam friends were planning on getting it)…then after all of that I ended up playing solo and no co-op anyways……….(i really need to think things through more)


  • So all the 3DS owners indahouse…

    Looking to pick up a new game to tide me over on my flight to Hong Kong. I am thinking a relatively inexpensive sidescroller, and believe I have narrowed it down to Shovel Knight or Steamworld: Dig. Both seem to have good reviews – has anyone here played them? I probably won’t get both immediately, but will inevitably end up picking up the second one once I’m finished with the first. So… which one should I start with?

    • Shovel Knight.
      Even though I have it on the Wii U, it’s still just as fantastic.
      Also, I’d recommend Mighty Switch Force on the 3DS, too.

    • Shovel Knight is kickass. I hear good things about Steamworld, but I can’t help but think “it’s not Shovel Knight”.

    • Shovel Knight is great, it feels like a game you have nostalgia for. The sounds, graphics and puns make it worthwhile.

    • Shovel Knight for sure. You can probably knock it over on the flight there if you’re good at platformers but it’s still a charming little game.

    • I’m playing through Shovel Knight now to break up Fire Emblem battles.

      Certainly enjoying it. Doesn’t punish you too harshly for being stupid and brings back some serious platforming nostalgia.

    • Shovel Knight is really good. Like, really good!

      Gunman Clive is fantastic too. There is a sequel out now as well.

      Mutant Mudds is also really great. Cool 3D effect.

      Shantae and the Pirates Curse is another platformer that is meant to be cool (I haven’t played it). Pretty sure it’s on the eShop as well now.

    • I finished Steamworld, it was pretty cool, a little short, though I guess I can’t ask for a Baldur’s Gate length game for the $15 or whatever it was.

  • Morning TAY!
    My weekend was a little boring, but that’s nothing new I guess. Not a lot I can do in my condition.
    I did do a thing though!

    NSWF unless you use headphones, so you have been warned! Would love to know what you think even if it’s not your kind of music. Not the greatest quality for a variety of reasons, but mostly due to my shitty cheap equipment. Still, feedback is welcomed! 🙂

  • After a stupid amount of drama I finally have my phone line switch from Internode to Optus booked in via Telstra.

    No way this is going to have more drama. Nope, not at all.

  • I played some 40K table for the first time in a long while. 500 point battle between my Eldar and a friend’s Tyranids. Turns out I was not prepared for infiltrated Genestealers to wipe out one of my bike squads in the first turn due to some really bad rolls (failed Overwatch, lost combat, and then I got destroyed as they were overrun). Low toughness also didn’t help against the high strength weapons the Nids had so even my multi-wound models were not safe from instant death. I still lasted almost five turns before the Hive Tyrant decided to nom on my Farseer.

    I also played Raiders of the North Sea which is a board game about going viking. It’s a really fun worker placement game but apparently it’s also really, really hard to get at the moment so I’ll have to hang out with my friends more to play it again.

    • Raiders is really good. It’s out of print right now but Shem’s just wrapped up his Kickstarter for Explorers of the North Sea (plus an expansion thing that lets you play Shipwrights/Raiders/Explorers back to back in a campaign which sounds awesome) and he was saying in the latest update that he’ll be doing a reprint of Raiders because over 750 people purchased a copy via that Kickstarter. Also doing a third reprinting of Shipwrights.

      You probably will never find his games in a FLGS though. If you do it’d be pretty rare. They’re not distributed via a traditional distributor AFAIK. He self-publishes.

  • I dreamt about that silly racing game where the cars go in opposite directions, except this time it was like mario kart


    Bill, ~2 year old border collie. never stopped wanting to play. followed me everywhere.
    bit sad coz my parent’s dog, Nell a 13 year old labrador wanted to join in & play, but she couldnt coz hip problems. shed just stand there wagging her tail with a dopey doggy smile watching Bill run like a crazy person.

    still, just gently rolled a soccer ball to Nell & she’d ‘catch’ it with her face, try & bite it & then take a few steps back, ready for me to ‘throw’ it again.

    also played a fair bit of Underrail.
    Sorta like a mash up of Fallout 1 & Metro 2033. pretty cool. very cool when you consider that it was mostly made by one dude over 7 years.

    anyway. now i’m back at work & missing puppies.

    • HOW GOOD ARE PUPPIES?! Sid saw Atlas for the first time in a month. They both cried they were so happy to see each other.

    • now i’m back at work & missing puppies.

      That’s the only downside to puppies. You miss them when you’re not patting them. =(

  • Spent Friday playing some CQC in Elite, getting back into the swing of things. I ended up switching over to try the Imperial Fighter instead of the Condor, and it seems to be sticking. There was this one guy in the matches though who was an absolute beast. Totally unstoppable, and it seemed like whatever lasers he was using were completely overpowered, I swear when I used them they weren’t that strong. It was nearly impossible to even get a kill on him, and I kept getting put in the opposite team. BUT THEN I GOT HIM! I was freakin ecstatic, haven’t gone back to check the shadowplay footage yet but I’m glad I captured it. Also, he seemed to disappear after finally taking a loss 😛

    On Saturday I got reminded of the demos Sixense sent out along with the STEM SDK a little while back. Thought since I’ve been playing around with the Rift again recently, I should dust off the old Hydra​ and give them a go. Turns out the reason I couldn’t run them previously was because of conflicts with the other controllers I have plugged in to my PC, at someone’s suggestion I tried removing them and finally they started working instead of crashing. It is so. God damn. Cool. I mean there’s inherent problems with the Hydra’s tracking, especially since there’s no tracker for the head. But even then it was so much fun. Golf and baseball were kinda weird and unplayable, possibly because DK1 doesn’t have any positional head tracking, but the other three still worked really well. Actually, archery didn’t work that great, it was really hard to line things up properly. But it was still fun. Made my shoulder so incredibly tired and sore though, after maybe just 10-20mins of play. Screw room-scale, standing’s going to be hard enough work as it is 😛 Got Mum to have a go of them too, she enjoyed them. Can’t wait to try them out with the full STEM system, it’s gonna be great with proper tracking.

    Went around to some family friends’ place for lunch over at Dee Why on Sunday. Had a good catch up, ate waaaaay too much. Didn’t need dinner at all 😛

    Now it is Monday​​ and all I can think about is climbing tonight and two weeks til Rift and probably need to sort out getting that new PC and I never got around to finishing to clean my room and about a million other things that are all happening. But mostly climbing.

  • How dumb is that online requirement for the new Hitman? It’d be okay if it only checked when you were trying to use online features but it checks constantly even if you’re just running through the mission the first time and if you lose connection, you get kicked to the menu! I thought it wasn’t so bad when I saw it was in offline mode but then you not only lose access to features but also can’t load any save that was made when you were online!

    I shudder to think how inefficient this system is, its constantly asking if you’re online and THEN asking if you’re using any sever dependant features rather than asking if you’re trying to use server dependent features and THEN going on to check if you’re online and enabling them where appropriate. Not that there seems to be any reason to disable challenge features, contract stuff certainly but challenges & unlocks? Mad…

  • Got The Division on PC (runs everything on max) and looking for someone to party with its cool doing some parts as one player but i would like to team up with a few from here :).

    • I’ll probably give it a burl in the evenings if folks want to team up. (Steam user: transientmind.) I did all the solo stuff, so there’s not really much left, but it’s very, very, very pretty and the shooting is fun. Not going to get into the gear-upgrade treadmill/grind.

      • I’m very tempted but I think by the time I get to it in a month or so you guys will all have gotten bored and disappeared.

        • I think it’s better played solo til you burn through all the solo content anyway. Worth the box price, IMO. Grouping… yeah, probably will be less enthused by then (especially given possible latency issues and timezones), but the matchmaking is exceptional (at the moment). I’ve never had to wait longer than a minute to get a group for ‘challenging’ modes. And I figure I’ll be leaving it installed for a while, so if you want to tee something up in advance, it should be doable.

          • I’ve got to finish Cold Steel first. And Senran Kagura releases tomorrow though apparently Amazon Prime’s ‘guaranteed release day delivery on preorders’ isn’t much of a guarantee.

  • Hola peoples!

    Haven’t been around TAY in a while, but I’m back! >:D
    I’ll have to make up for my absence with lots of innuendo and inappropriate remarks ,’:D

    Week was good. Swamped with uni work again (LAST YEAR WOOOO!), but got to hang out with (I can’t remember their tags) OnTarget, theCracks, and Fled on Saturday, which was cool! Perth meats happen far too rarely.

    Also… Penis!

  • Hi all! After thoroughly bashing The Division last week, I grouped up with some of my Destiny raid team and played some more over the weekend. And by “some more” I mean “another 36 hours of it or so”… We inadvertently played all through Friday night until maybe 5am, 3am Sunday morning, and 2am last night… *collapses*

    Not going to post detailed thoughts today as I feel it’d be a rambling incoherent mess… suffice to say that its coop has won me over – the endgame “Challenging” missions are tactically interesting, require good teamwork and good gear, and are vastly more enjoyable when you stop thinking of the game as a semi-realistic shooter and more as a Diablo-style loot-/build-focused ARPG with cover mechanics. Had a great deal of fun identifying choke-points in the map to lay traps and ambush enemies as they approached, focusing down one or two at a time – enemies are very spongey, but as long as 2+ people focus-fire, they drop quickly enough. Enemy armour is now basically a non-issue for me (outside of yellow-bar machine-gunners, who have a lot of health anyway) – we were absolutely shredding level 30 yellows in the DZ with no problems. We even pushed up into DZ06 and took out some named 32 yellows, tho the rewards for doing so were not really worth the risk/effort.

    Still very much dislike the rogue system as it currently exists – faced off against a 4-man group of rogues, and managed to take out all-but-one. The last one ran around the map with essentially everyone else in the instance on his tail, then cornered himself to allow his teammates (now non-rogue as we’d killed them) gunned us all down from behind. Literally nothing we could do without either going rogue ourselves or giving up the chase, despite recognising them when they joined the chase, and knowing they’d turn on us.

  • Afternoon errbody how’s every little thing? My long weekend so far has been good.

    Saturday I worked, open houses are hella stressful.

    Sunday went shopping and brought the division on PS4, also brought a bunch of shirts for work.

    today I have done nothing so that’s good too.

    Monday question, what book needs to be turned into a game/movie/tv series and why?

  • TAY RPG Pathfinder on tonight at AEST 7:30pm, ACDT 8pm, and AEDT 8:30pm. Starring:

    @redartifice @tech_knight @freezespreston @beeawwb

    The party camped on the edge of the felled forest copse as they prepared to approach the icy keep. They followed the marks of whales that had been dragged here but they are unsure about who or what is taking these beasts.

    Edit: Let me know if you can’t make it tonight.

    • I blame a Victorian public holiday and recently installing XCOM2 for forgetting that this was on last night, sorry Popdart 🙁

      • All good. Are you available at all for playing on Wednesday night instead? I’m just trying to figure out if we can work a redo session for this week.

  • Who’s still playing XCOM2? Has anyone had much experience with the performance patch? I’m finding the game is running much smoother in the Avenger and on the geoscape, but have other people’s games started auto-targeting the lowest chance-to-hit enemy instead of the highest?

    • Yep. Confused me for a bit when I kept trying to fire on aliens halfway across the map behind cover instead of the Muton in my soldier’s face about to tear it off.

    • That seems like a very counter-intuitive thing to do. I can’t believe that’s intentional…

      I loaded it up just recently to test some things, but I’m not ready for another playthrough just yet.

    • I knew something was up when I started playing it and I didn’t fire at the bloody faceless in my assault’s face, no he shot the fuel canister behind it -_-

  • Hello TAY,

    My weekend was alright. I joined a rowing club on Sat and will be doing some rowing twice a week. Went to meditation to calm my monkey mind and then beach volleyball on Sunday. Played division, whenever I got the time on xbone, currently on level 17.

    Didn’t get the time for Destiny, my titan is on 318.

    • I can’t imagine trying to to play both Destiny and Division. I quit Destiny months ago and still don’t have time to play the Division.

  • Shower me with your assistance!

    So I have a New 3DS XL and an old launch day 3ds with an old firmware on it that I want to preserve for things Nintendo doesn’t need to know about (I’m actually giving it to a friend to go nuts with), but it has my NNID linked to it and I’d like to transfer it to my new 3DS first. I can’t do that without performing a system update obviously, but I’ve read that you can call Nintendo *shudders* and they can process it if you just say it’s faulty?

    Anyone done this before? Is it a simple enough process/what info will I need to memorise?

    • Haven’t done it myself, but have seen it mentioned around the place yeah. It’s to do with un-linking your current NNID from your original console so it’s freed up to attach to your new one. Though just thinking about it now I’m not sure why you can’t just unlink it from the first console yourself, then add it to the second. But there’s probably some technicality there that I’m not thinking of.

      I mean you lose all your save data and everything, as well as your friend code and friends list. All it pulls across is your eShop stuff. But basically you’re calling them up to say that your 3DS was stolen/lost/damaged and you need to link your profile to a new machine. Not sure if you’d need the serial number of the old machine or if they’d just get you do tell them your NNID password or something.

    • Oh and also downgrading is a thing apparently? Or was a thing. I don’t know what the current state of things is, but it may be possible to just transfer normally then downgrade the original unit to something more… activity-friendly.

      What version’s the old one on, out of interest?

      • It’s currently on version 8.1.0-19E. And yeah I’m just looking at downgrading and that sounds like it should work. (He can do it, but it should work at least)

        I don’t mind losing any of the data on my old one, literally all I want is my NNID on my new one just so I still have it.

  • Gonna copy and paste my comments about Galak-Z here.
    I was really looking forward to Galak-Z. I didn’t buy it at release as I’m unemployed and I had a lot of games on my plate enough as it is. So I decided to just push it back until a sale. Then I get it for PS+, so it all worked out. I played it in the last week and while I think it’s a good game I was also rather disappointed.

    First problem is, it’s describe as a brutally difficult game, where dying will result in the loss of progress for the current season. However, I never died once. Now, the game is challenging, I really enjoyed it, but I never had to make a decision to run away from combat or use the environment. I fought every battle and even grind a few times.

    Another problem with this ‘rogue-like’ game is that out of the 5 seasons, it actually didn’t pick up in challenge until season 4. The first 3 seasons were fairly easy. Considering this is a rogue-like game (why is this a term?) that’s just bad design. Rogue-like games are designed to be challenging from the start to give you the idea of what you’re in for, not half-way through. Although I did love how you could only purchase 1 repair per episode.

    But here’s the biggest disappointment of the game. It’s unfinished! The game released with no 5th season. I was ready to spend my weekend going through the hardest part of the game, instead I have to wait for them to announce when they’ve finished the game. It’s bloody stupid.

    Been playing a bit of Smite and I’m starting to get sick of the genre. I get how addictive it can be but I also see how aggressive it can be too.
    First problem comes from the fact that you get a bonus for your first victory of each gametype for the day. Since there’s 5 gametypes, and matches usually go for 20 minutes, it can really take time out of your day. If you’ve got somewhere to be, losing a match can get you really aggravated. At which point you start blaming your teammates, or the balance of the game, or something else. Then you start sending angry messages, looking up builds to try and maximize your kill ratio. Repeatedly spamming ‘Retreat’ voice command when you see the 0.5 k/d kid rush forward into a group of 3 by themselves for the 10th time.

    So I’m going to try and ease back from playing the game. Trying to get full enjoyment out of the genre just makes it worse.

    Because of all the drama over the new Ghostbusters movie I decided to play the 2009 game. I got it for free for Gold like, 2 years ago, but never got around to it.

    It was a really enjoyable game, especially considering this game came out during a time where everybody started imitating Gears of War, Halo or CoD, but it still managed to keep its own identity.

    There were a few problems, a lot of areas were really open spaces and felt out of place. The physics for a lot of objects were really loose. But since so much was destructible it was fun watching an entire area get destroyed from your presence. Once you get the slime tether you can have a bit of fun creating web strings of random objects.

    I played on the hardest difficulty and there were 3 or 4 areas where the game was broken (especially one part involving dive bombing angels) and you can spend a lot of time reviving and being revived due to shitty ghost attacks. One particular boss battle had an AoE attack that stun locks you into getting hit by it again. But a lot of enemies are designed like puzzles where you’ve got to figure out their patterns and consider which ghost to get rid of first.

    Best part of the game is trapping ghosts. Weakening them down with the right weapon (even if one of those weapons felt really lazy to be designed like a machine gun), grabbing them, slamming them into the walls, gently pulling them into a trap, tugging them back and forth to prevent escape, before the trap explodes in light and takes a few moments of Pokeball beeping to calm down. Busting really feels good.

    • I was really excited for Galak-Z too. In fact it was one of the games that convinced me to buy a PS4 just after launch.

      But the game changed style mid-development and when it came out it turned out they’d made it into the exact sort of thing I simply don’t have time for (I have zero interest in games that have no respect for your time) so I’ve never even touched the copy I bought when it released.

          • There’s a world of difference between “you died, let’s reload the checkpoint from 2 minutes ago” or “you died, let’s reload your last save” and “you died so you’ve lost everything you did on this level and have to start from scratch”. It’s punitive for the sake of being punitive.

            Also my understanding (did not bother to play the game) is that if you ‘continue’ and re-start a failed level it resets a lot of your stuff, you’re not just starting over, you start from the beginning of that level but lose everything you had accumulated to that point. To which I say Fuck. Off.

            It’s a shame because when they first showed it off it looked like a rad little 2D Macross homage. 🙁

  • @cffndncr I just played the most horrifically ragequitting game of combo druid ever. Obviously I was the combo druid. So I’m facing a murloc pally and my starting hand is Emperor, swipe and force of nature. Now I’m looking at this hand against this matchup and thinking dear god I’m going to have 3-4 dead turns and I did. I did however draw into 2 savage roars and hit 6 cards with my Emperor’s buff. So come turn 9 my enemy’s sitting at 30 health with board control and I have one shade of naxx. I do the only cringeworthy thing and play fotn + double savage + innvervate hero power and deal 31 damage in one turn xD

    • AAAAAAAND bullshit like that is why I quit playing =P

      Good on you though! I bet you could hear the sound of him/her smashing his phone/computer echoing around the interwebs.

      • Lol I was laughing like crazy when that turn came up; I mean who the hell plays around fotn + double savage roar + innervate combo?!? I literally used all the cards in my hand to kill him. I even did that thing where after I played my whole hand I did nothing for like 10 seconds so he could count the damage xD 10/10 BM? Bahahahah.

        (To be fair if I had unstealthed my Shade the turn before I would’ve missed lethal the next turn and probably lost; glad I kept him safe and I was considering it because he still hadn’t used a single pyro + equality combo; probably got too greedy and didn’t want to waste it on a single minion)

        You jumping back in for WotoG? Seems they’re going to give away C’thun at launch with 3 packs.

        • I doubt it. I know if I start playing again I’ll get sucked right back in, and I’m kind of enjoying not having that rage fueling my life anymore.

          • That is why I can’t keep Mordheim installed for very long. It’s great when it’s great, but when it’s full of COMPLETE FUCKING BULLSHIT it makes me want to put my fist through the screen. Bugs and glitches and unexplained rules, rules which are explained but are nonsensical and idiotic, bullshit RNG… So frustrating.

  • That was an exhausting weekend. Two kid’s birthday parties. One was a mega party for twins, and the other was a trip to the zoo. Not that either didn’t have highlights, but urgh, it was just a bit too much for my nerves.

    Had an awesome time playing games on Saturday night. Have added FUNemployment to my wishlist.

  • Well. Got invited to go climbing with Aerialist Girl on Friday. Along with another guy. But got her number. After being accused of being a psychopath for not having a Facebook. But countered that psychopaths are also known to eat dinner. So I think it’s ok.

    • I think at least half of the severity of the issues in the game comes down to the anti-rejection drugs and their cost.

      But that was definitely just a way of exaggerating the issues which I think we will see of augmented prostheses being more advantageous and desirable for personal performance and employment, and the ethics of removing perfectly healthy body parts, and the surgeries being out of the reach of the disadvantaged, meaning that the income equality gap will only widen.

      • I also think that the idea that there will be a political and ideological movement that opposes augmentation is incredibly likely. And that it will be driven at least in part by the US bible belt declaring that people should remain ‘natural’ like god intended, and if they lost a limb that was just His plan for them etc.

        And that there would be a political candidate who would use this as an election position.

        • Considering the crazy people that believe the anti-vaccination crap, I can only despair at the utter idiocy that will come out when body augmentation starts becoming commonplace.

          • See this is why we should bring back natural selection; if you don’t pass an IQ/social intellect test at the age of 20 then we just export you to the moon. Very similar to Australia’s current stop the boats policy; except under this law we’d probably lose 80% of our government to outer space.

  • I’m trying to back up my pc. However, windows 10 keeps telling me that my 1TB HD is full, despite the fact that it’s empty. =/
    And I can only format it to be 32gigs, despite having no partitioning.

    • That sounds not normal. 32gb means it’s trying to format the drive as FAT32. You want to format NTFS.

      Right click start to bring up the context menu and click Disk Management. Navigate to the disk in question, then right-click on each volume on that disk and select ‘delete volume’. There should then be 100% unallocated space. Double-click that to create a new volume and format it NTFS.

      You can then use the built-in backup tools. The old win7 backup tool still works fine in Windows 10 AFAIK and it’ll allow you to make a full copy of your entire disk.

  • So I finished Enemy Within this weekend as well as installed XCOM2, been playing nothing but that over the weekend.

    Wow the difficulty spiked between the first XCOM and this, I’ve already restarted 3-4 times haha.
    Absolutely loving this game though, all my “Tech Knight” models are using modded Halo helmets :D, I really love they’re already modded into the game and they look great too!

    Edit: Also to any of the TAYbies currently playing it, have you exported your characters (If you made TAYbies for instance), and if so, how do I grab them?

  • Automobilista finished downloading last night, and all I’ve been driving in it is the Stadium Super Trucks.
    These things are a blast! The tracks all have the ramps like you see on TV, and the trucks three-wheel around corners… they’re so damn cool! 😀

  • Sydney and surrounding innernette people.

    Mojos. Saturday. From 18:30.

    Come celebrate my successful infiltration of Sydney over the past 365 days. Also our friendship.

    Bring whoever.

    @35 @alexpants @anonymous_pessimist @batgirl @batguy @cakesmith @cffndncr @cj @cookingmama @dkzeitgeist @doc_what @effluvium-boy @fatshadylive @gingerchris86 @gorzilla @harli @hugo_the_hungarian_barbarian @mawt @morkai @markserrels @mrtaco @novacascade @powalen @pupp3tmast3r @ruffleberg @shiggyninty

  • My place it isn’t uncommon to find frogs, normally they just chill outside either around the back door where there’s a few bonsais, bromeliads & the cats water bowl. But the last few days i’ve had to remove this little guy from atop the washing machine because he likes to come inside of a night & chill in the laundry sink.

  • Tuesday!!

    How are we all?

    Last song played?!?!? Scripted by Keeno

    Also, in podcast land it was episode 9 of the Voice of The Report of the Week

    A fan on the subreddit made a podcast feed and I am grateful

    Played The Division all weekend and loved every minute of it

    • I think it was Sacred Worlds by Blind Guardian.

      Division is rad, having a lot of fun in solo, multi, and multi with randoms. We’ll see how long that lasts 😛

      • Me and my two mates are using it to (hopefully) replace Destiny

        We got so many hours out of Destiny, and I can’t get into ESO like they have been able to.

        I was able to get to level 28 from Friday night to roughly around 9pm on Sunday night, that’s how much I played, but also indicative of how much I enjoyed it.

        It to me didn’t even feel too grindy

    • Wandering Star By Portishead.

      I Can’t say I’m interested in another mmo. I’ll stick to being addicted to stardew valley 🙂

  • QUESTION: Gamepads. What are your recommendations?

    Was using a wired 360 pad, but the D-pad annoyed the fuck out of me, so I got a Razer Sabretooth. That was perfectly fine until it just stopped working the other night.

    Dunno if it’s the cable or whatever. Razer dont seem to sell replacement gamepad cables either.

    anyway, i’ll look around & see what I can do with that.

    however, if theres not success there, what replacements do you recommend? wired? wireless? I dunno. max budget is about $100 give or take a bit.

    • I’m using a standard Xbox One controller and love it. It feels like a total upgrade of the 360 controller.

      Added advantage: you can plug the standard wireless one into a Windows 10 PC via a microUSB cable and it will work as a wired controller, no additional hardware needed.

      • thanks man. I was leaning toward the Xbone controller. Just wasn’t certain if wired / wireless was the way to go. but you’ve answered that one.

        follow up question – USB charging, yeah?

        also 2nd follow up – according to the PCCG site, it requires Windows 10? that right?

        • Yep, I bought one that included the play and charge kit on sale a while back, and it all works fine. Microsoft have learned from their mistakes with the PC 360 controller in basically every way.

        • I think originally the wireless adapter required win10, but recently they released drivers to make it work on 7 and 8 too.

        • I could have sworn I used it on Windows 8 (or possibly even 7) but I’m not sure. I haven’t tried it with the wireless dongle. Looking at the XBOX support page it’ll work on Windows 7, 8 and 10. I don’t remember having to do anything to get it working but that might just be my faulty memory.

          Does anyone know if the audio jack and/or keyboard accessory work when using it on the PC? It always bugged me that they didn’t properly support that stuff with the 360 gamepad.

    • Xbone controller. Don’t pay for a play & charge kit – you just need a bog-standard USB cable like you’d use to charge a non-Apple phone. Works flawlessly. If you want to use it wirelessly you can get a dongle but you’ll have to put fresh batteries into the controller every 20-30 hours of gameplay.

    • I’ve got a Logitech 710 wireless. It’s xBoxey in that it’s A B X Y and stuff, but it has the thumbsticks in a PS3/PS4 way. I don’t mind it at all. Got me though RotTR last week. 🙂

  • I cracked and brought The Division last night. I’m enjoying it but it’s been pretty cringe-worthy plot-wise. I don’t recall a game ever working so hard to convince me the character was just like me. It just keeps hammering me on the head and yelling ‘get it! You’re the character! It’s a random guy like you!’.
    It’s also sort of creepy how it’s almost got a pro-terrorist vibe. Like in any other Tom Clancy game The Division would be the sleeper cell coming up out of nowhere to burn the city down, but this time you’re seeing it from the point of view of a ‘freedom fighter’. It’s a cool idea for a twist but the execution feels strange.

    • Being called a terrorist or a freedom fighter often depends on who wins.
      Though terrorists traditionally do more killing of non-combatants.

    • The concept of ‘average joe social worker/photojournalist/defense attorney’ being more competent than military/police JTF forces thanks to precious SHD-tech kind of annoys me. In the very first scene – the intro – your (I assume senior) agent is telling you that you’re the front line and the last line. Meanwhile, there’s a JTF dude just standing right there to listen to that insult.

      I mean, I know they go to great lengths to reinforce that the current JTF consists of paramedics, firemen, and dog-catchers and the like, not just police/military… but it’s as if they’re not doing anything or the entire police/military component of the force is incompetent and devoid of charismatic or competent leaders. From what I know of military structure, the suspension of disbelief required is powerful.

      I’m personally choosing to believe that every agent received a few years of extensive special-ops training before being embedded. Nothing else makes any sense.

      Most everything outside of that incredibly flawed premise is pretty believable, but man. The things they sacrificed at the altar of the silent protagonist… the storytelling. The character development and growth? There’s next to nothing. Just observing snippets of other peoples’ stories. Vignettes, here and there. They go to these extreme lengths of meaningful protagonist-obliteration to ensure that the game can’t possibly do anything to contradict your apparently precious (and utterly ill-advised) self-insertion (into one of maybe half a dozen poorly-customized avatars).

      Amazing world-building, though. So dense with detail. And the shooting’s fun once you get hold of some guns that feel like they might be a bit more powerful than a super-soaker.

      (Also, I didn’t get the pro-freedom fighter vibe. All the echo files and intel bits give me the impression that everyone who knows about them considers Division agents to be shadowy Fed goons, faceless puppets of The Man, protecting government interests above local concerns. Only the First Wave gone rogue seem to be in the position of terrorists.)

      • It’s like they approached the ability to self-insert as a programmed in mechanic. As though if you ever hit a point where the character clashes with your own personality the game will crash.
        It doesn’t stop me from enjoying the game at all it’s just one of those curious situations where I can’t help but wonder how they got there. I mean plenty of games go that route with mixed results, but The Division feels aggressive or even compulsive about it. That said I guess it’s one less thing to worry about when making end-game content. They’re going to be busy enough as it is with how much detail goes into the sets.

    • The “average guy” thing always amuses me… “He’s an average guy, just like you! … Except he has extensive military training, lacks vocal cords, and has dedicated his life to preparing for a national disaster.” Yep, perfectly average in every way… >.>

  • So I had no idea Heavy Rain & Beyond Two Souls got released for PS4 the other week. Might finally get around to playing Beyond Two Souls. I liked Heavy Rain, even if it was a bit stupid in places. Might pick it up this week & actually play a game on my PS4 for once!

  • TV Shows!

    What’s everyone been watching of late? Got anything you’d highly recommend? Anything that’s new that you’d consider amazing & fresh in TV land?

    I’ve been watching My Name is Earl since I discovered it on Netflix the other week, never really watched it when it aired on TV, it’s an alright show to zone out to of an evening.

    Other than that, just the usual of Workaholics, Bob’s Burgers, The Simpsons, Vinyl (which is amazing by the way) Better Call Saul & a few car shows which includes a new one featuring Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top, which is pretty cool.

    I’ve found i’ve lost total interest in The Walking Dead, season 5 to me was rather really lack lustre & didn’t really care for the show after that, maybe i’ll give it a go when it comes to an end whenever that will be..

    • Forged In Fire! Reality competition show where they forge weapons. I’m addicted.

      Edit: Also, The Last Kingdom on Netflix was pretty good.

    • Started The Killing on Netflix, and hanging out for Daredevil on Friday- rewatched it this weekend and liked it more on this go-around than the first time through, though I stand by my earlier criticism (Whispered conversations that go on too long, lack of structure to the narrative).

      Other than that, been listening to podcasts and audiobooks. Finished The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks the other week, which is super interesting. It’s about the HeLa cell line, which is used in medical research for everything, but originally came from a cervical cancer sample from a poor black woman in the 50s in America, which is pretty much an awful time to be a poor black woman.

      Currently trying to get into The Luminaries, a literary novel set in the New Zealand Gold rush, but it’s a bit dense going in in audio.

    • Uh. I get to hear My Kitchen Rules and Australia’s Got Talent floating across the living room. Also Survivor. And First Dates. Which may or may not actually be kind of addictive. Send help.

    • Shotgunned Flaked, a Will Arnett show, over the weekend. It’s got a similar hipster vibe to Love but stands in its own right. Both are decent to watch if odd meanderings are your sort of thing.

      Other than that, someone recommended House a while back; thought I’d try it half-heartedly and now it’s one of those things I’m slowly powering through.

    • House of Cards, obviously, and I’m looking forward to new Daredevil.

      I LOVED Food Safari Fire on SBS – the last two episodes are still up on SBSOnDemand. Otherwise, I’ve been working my way through Misfits on Netflix. It’s not bad, and I really like the theme song by The Rapture.

      • I am seriously considering, once I pay of my mortgage, quitting full time work for a part time gig so I have all this extra time for the stuff I “don’t get around to.”

      • It’s the only game I’ve ever immediately gone back into New Game+ and played through to the end again. And I even did that 4 times to “properly” finish the game.

  • Afternoon. What a weekend. 100% completed Rise of the Tomb Raider on Friday apart from upgrading some of the weapons. Beautiful game. Pretty good story, with varied puzzles and environments, although it’s a shame some of the other characters from TR2013 weren’t used at all this game (yeah I know they’re in the comic continuity, but but.) Still, good fun and that’s my leaping and shooting satisfied until Uncharted in May…

    Saturday much Elite:Dangerous and then the Rebels scrapped out a win against Queensland Reds. 30th on Sunday with a few nice beers at an American BBQ place in Footscray. Monday complete chill-out in Elite.

    Two day week this week! Woo!

  • Hola Tayberinos.

    Haven’t done a w’end recap for a while, work is errrrrrrrgh so haven’t had the time.

    It was a 3 day weekend (for the Adelaide Cup/festivals) here, so I had a good 3 days. Saturday stayed in, did a bunch of my N7 work- I’ve now finished the structural pieces for the back plate, which is the most complex piece. Hoping to have the main chunks of it done before the weekend so I can work out the lighting and do all the detail pieces over the weekend, after which the whole armour will be assembled and I’ll be ready to strap it all and test fit. Once it’s strapped I’ll be up to painting and finishing, so hopefully I can get it 100% by the end of April!

    Sunday, went to a mate’s house for Board Games and Magic. Played commander, got mana screwed, but ultimately pulled out a win. Yesterday I went to a mate’s house for a BBQ, I helped him construct some of his pergola last year and it’s now finished and his backyard’s been landscaped so it’s looking good.

    A Tuesday Afternoon Question: How are your parents?

    • My parents are doing well. Very preoccupied with the health of my one remaining Grandparent. Unfortunately she was diagnosed with Dementia. What this means is a lot of them, particularly my mother, driving 150km to Wangaratta to help her out with appointments and stuff. they had to put her in a nursing home last year after my Grandpa died. because she did not want to move to live with anyone else and wanted to stay in Wangaratta.

      Unfortunately this means my Mum continues to walk on her broken toe so it will never heal, despite us asking her to let us take on some of the work.

      Sometimes I wonder where I get my stubbornness from…

      • Oh, that’s no good.

        I’ve got my two grandfathers left. Maternal grandfather is being treated for pancreatic cancer, and apparently that’s going well- they’ve lessened the chemo from 3/4 weeks to 2/4 weeks, so he can recover and travel a bit between sessions.

        Paternal grandfather we thought was having a serious issue at the start of the year- fatigued, very tired, dizzy- but he went into hospital a couple weeks ago and got a leak in his GI tract cauterised and a pint of blood and is now right as rain- he managed 13 holes on the golf course last week, which at 87 is well respectable

          • There’s a layer of social stuff on it all. Paternal grandfather? All good, he’s bopping along, I visited him in hospital when he was there, very good relationship.
            Maternal grandfather, however, is complicated by his wife (second wife, my mother’s mother passed before I was born). She’s essentially not very pleasant, and mum and her sister have had a lot of angst with her. Apparently I’m OK in her books though, which is certainly through no concerted effort.

          • Cheers bro. It’s OK, it’s at a detente, I think they’re OK… but when he does eventually pass it’s gonna be ugly

    • Dad got back in-country a few weeks back and the last few weekends have been about ferrying crap over there and spending time on birthday dinners and the like. (3 in my family in March.)

      We went to a club which had a Tom Jones/Elvis impersonator and now I’ve had Tom Jones songs stuck in my head for the last few weeks.

      Mum I haven’t seen in a while, but I’m intending to this next weekend. She wants to get in on the Birthday celebration stuff too.

  • Ugh. Stupid Hitman game. Being all over store pages and publisher emails and stuff…
    It’s like a psychotic (but hot) ex messaging to say they’re in town soon and they should come over to hang out. I need a block button for the store page. Like… ‘Don’t show me ads for this game until six months later when it’s finished.’ So that my willpower doesn’t waver and leave me with an undesirable experience.

    I’ve bought every game in the series on multiple platforms but by God, I’m waiting until the game is actually FINISHED before I buy the latest. I swear it! I don’t want any of this drip-feed, ‘play this level repeatedly from every possible angle (but only online, because offline single-player is wheel-clamped as a form of we-totally-swear-it’s-not-DRM) for an entire month until the next one’ Early-Access-in-all-but-name bullshit. I can totally manage this. It will not be difficult at all.
    *eyes store page*

    I mean… I imagine it’s gotta be like buying an album one song at a time, each fortnight.
    “Play this over and over until you hate it! Because you want to play more of the shiny new thing, but can’t! :D”

  • Damn, apparently some stranger knows my animals better than me. Guess I better listen to them since according to them I know nothing about my own cats which i’ve only had for 15+ years 🙁

  • I wanna protest against SERVER MAINTENANCE times. We always get shafted. Only time this week I have to play The Division is now and it’s down until 11pm!

    Why does every goddamn fucking game have to run it’s server downtime during AEST peak play time. If they did this shit in the US they’d lose their shit! I know we are a much smaller player base, but it’s literally every game; always the same time. I bet there’s a dozen games that are down right now.

    Who’s going to stand up for us and have a go at the industry about this? It’s been going on for too long.

    I’m mad. haha… RRRRRRR!

    • Actually, Ubisoft have said they are looking into alternative server maintenance times.

      Then again, this is Ubisoft so you can’t really take anything they say to heart. =P

    • I get that maintenance is essential to games like this and that they don’t want a version imbalance, I really get that. The thing that I don’t get is that it’s not like anyone outside of ANZ has access to the ANZ servers, what does it matter if we’re playing an outdated version for a few hours? Stuff like this would be a scripted process anyway, why not just task schedule them for 3am at whatever local time the servers are using?

    • I just don’t get why so many online games find it necessary to do it on Tuesday night. It’d be nice if they could at least stagger the shutdowns between them so that if you want to hop from the other you don’t get the exact same maintenance message.

  • I’m home after 2 weeks in WA. Will probably do a write up some time tomorrow as I’m too tired to do it now. For now, I’ll say I had fun but I am so glad to be home to sleep in my own bed and have a proper shower.

    • It can be the most expensive, ergonomically-superior bed in the world… but nothing beats the feeling of sleeping in your own bed.

    • *gasp* Man I never grabbed the last window which was the sequel. I really loved Cing’s games. I don’t think there was one I didn’t enjoy. I was sad when they split.

          • The strong dollar a few years back was pretty great, along with opportunistic sales. I think I might’ve grabbed both it and 999 from Play-Asia at the same time, like 20-30ish each.

            Oh man I totally forgot they were the ones behind Little King’s Story. Now I’m sad again.

          • Yeah, but at least New Little King’s story was good.
            Again is $30 Aus from US.
            The last window is $75 Aus from the UK

    • Huh, I’ve been playing hotel dusk for the past week on the daily commute, it’s been pretty interesting, though the stylus controls are sometimes annoying in puzzles

        • Just some inaccuracy on some things made some puzzles difficult to actually solve, even resulted in game overs at times.
          My major gripe on this game so far is that it’s horribly railroading me along.
          For Example:
          Getting the wine label to Helen, Rosa tells me about giving all the labels to the three that asked to take them up to their rooms for her, other two being Iris and Martin, but the game doesn’t allow me to collect those labels, at all, ever. I was hoping I could use this chance to smooth over some already ruffled feathers and maybe they’ll be more open with me next time I talk to them (Especially Iris), but the moment I go over to the next bottle to use the Adhesive Remover, I get “Not going to get anywhere using this right now”, wait… why? You just did it less than 2 minutes ago on Helen’s one, why not?! Same happened to the third bottle too. Seriously I noted this down in my book in terms of who had what, for nothing? Not even gonna bother, just leaving this awkwardness hanging in the air?
          Got quite annoying there, also apparently I missed the chance to get change to solve the vending machine puzzle, pretty shitty reasoning there, can’t simply just ring the front desk to get it done at any time? Urgh!

          • Haha, I wanted to try Windows Phone like 6 years ago, but Telstra never sent dad the Windows Phone he asked for on contract so I never got to try it.

          • That sucks. I’m pretty happy with my windows phone. I tried Samsung and it was okay but there was a lot of bloat ware. When my brother destroyed the samsung, i knew I didn’t want another one. My only real option was the windows phone, but I liked it so much that I got another one when I upgraded

          • I get it when app developers were not supporting it, but now it has some pretty decent app support, I can’t see why people would give it a bad rap now though.

  • Hi Gooky,
    Thanks for your order!
    This email confirms that we’ve received your preorder of the Oculus Rift.
    Order Number: XXXXXXXXXX
    Oculus Rift ($0.00 ) x 1 = $0.00
    Taxes, Surcharges and Fees: Applicable shipping, taxes and duties will be added to and charged in your payment upon shipment of the unit.
    Order Total: $0.00
    Tracking #: (will be assigned when your order ships)
    *spins around on floor*

    *drills hole through to next level*

  • Ha, I got an email from the Metallica store the other night telling me about some ‘garage sale’ they were having, I had a look fully thinking prices would be outrageous & not worth it, including shipping. Nope. They have sooo much stuff discounted heavily, that’s worth it, shirts from as little as $3 (none in my size though /sad). I managed to pick up the 2 disc bluray (which is region free afaik) of The Big 4 live in Sofia Bulgaria for 4 bucks, holy shit that is still $30+ here!! I also saw they had these fancy earplugs that are designed for concerts that let you hear everything clear as day and not damage your hearing so I snagged a pair of those as well, because a) I desperately need a pair for & b) they were the cheapest I had seem them at 10 bucks. And the best part was shipping was only $7 which is so reasonable for stuff coming from the states.

  • Spahgett’s last song played game

    Tis a pity she was a whore by David Bowie

    Also a bit of the latest Jimquisition

    So tired this morning, so tired

  • So, PSvr. Thoughts? Feelings?

    On the face of it it seems much better value at half the cost of the Rift with not too much worse specs. Especially if like me you would need a gpu upgrade.
    The question I think is gonna be the software available. No Man’s Sky is apparently not supported so it could be pretty limited in the kind of games you can play, possibly to crappy little arcade games.

    Gonna have to wait and see, but it still might be my pick for first gen VR.

    • I got The Gear VR with my new phone for nothing so I’m pretty much sitting with that. Although if they were to confirm NMS for PSVR I would be very interested. particularly with that price and the fact I already have the Camera

    • Not for me
      I don’t have a PS4 so I could get a Vive/Rift for the same cost as PSVR+PS4
      I’m dubious about the quality of the PSVR and the power of the PS4 to deliver on it. Considering we always seem to her of issues with sub 30 fps on games anyway adding VR is going to be problematic

    • UIs seem to be getting smaller and smaller, and this is cheaper (and more space-efficient) than getting a bigger TV, so I’ll probably get it for the cinema mode (performance pending, of course) if nothing else, and hope for some cool games for it in the future.

    • I understand why it doesn’t come with everything required to play but I think that’s going to burn them a little. Consoles are great for roping in a wider range of players, but they’re also the players who need every cord to be in the box. When you accidentally send them back to the store or just generally inconvenience them you run the risk of souring them on the technology.
      For instance the time between plugging in an XBOX One and playing it kills a lot of people’s enthusiasm for their new console. The N64 not having an RF cable coupled with availability issues on the RF cable was a nightmare. The PS3 not including a HDMI cable in the box was… weird. It’s the whole ‘batteries not included’ thing.
      If I were in Sony’s shoes I’d firmly establish the price for the VR unit on it’s own, then only sell it in a same priced bundle that comes with the camera and Move controller (I’m sure they’ve got a whole warehouse full of them gathering dust, which probably doesn’t bode well for the PSVR. =P). They’d run into the same problem as the XBOX One/Kinect did where people who don’t need the camera/controller think it would cost less without the parts they don’t want, but I think the amount of players who own the camera and controller who would be annoyed by this is relatively small compared to the amount of players whose first experience with VR is going to be going back to the store to spend more money.

      I’d be interested to know what the other VR companies think about it. PSVR is cheap, but it’s still expensive enough that people aren’t going to put off passing judgement on the technology based on the PSVR’s performance.

      • I believe Sony has said they will “work with retailers to provide bundles” regarding the camera/move.
        I’m fine with it being stand alone. I don’t have the extras but neither am I interested in the move controllers for the time being.

        I don’t think it will be too bad re your second point. It might be less powerful but stuff will be well optimised for it.
        And I think VR really does need a cheaper Everyman option to compliment the Rift/Vive high end “this is what it really can do” option. Otherwise it will forever be just a niche peripheral for enthusiasts.

    • In all honesty, the PSVR had the most immersive, and by far the most fun experience out of the Vive and the Rift, I got to try all three.
      The resolution is lower, but the screen door doesn’t look as bad, maybe it is because of their OLED screen?
      Not sure, but of the reviews I’ve read, most seem to be saying the same, that the PSVR actually was the most enjoyable of the three.

      Now obviously the PC solutions let you throw a 980Ti or better in your computer for better graphics (but the card alone costs more than the PSVR), but I feel like Sony ‘gets’ what makes a good VR experience and is working with developers along that tack.
      The initial software lineup looks good, Project Cars and Driveclub and Eve Valkyrie will keep me busy for a while.

      I think it is the best option of the three, I currently own a DK1 and DK2, and will be getting the PSVR, and giving the other solutions a miss for the first few generations.

  • Hrm… ABS isn’t going to be destroying identifying data collected with this year’s census. “It’ll be stored separately from the census data…” they say, which is good, because people certainly won’t bother trying to hack both sets of data; and public servants with access to both sets definitely wouldn’t ever engage in unauthorised access of that data.
    Surely the great risk here is that it’ll degrade the quality of census data if people know it’s not anonymous, and the census data is so critically important.

    • I haven’t had a look into this other than saw it flagged the it wouldn’t be anonymous.
      Has anything been said in terms of why it is suddenly not anonymous?

          • The Australian Bureau of Statistics has decided to retain names and addresses collected in the 2016 Census of Population and Housing in order to enable a richer and dynamic statistical picture of Australia through the combination of Census data with other survey and administrative data.
            Whilst the Census has always been valuable in its own right, when used in combination with other data the Census can provide even greater insight. Some examples are:
            The combination of Census data and education data can provide insight into employment outcomes from the various educational pathways available to Australians, and
            The combination of Census data and health data can help improve Australia’s understanding and support of people who require mental health services and assist with the design of better programs of support and prevention.
            The retention of addresses will also support the ABS Address Register enabling more efficient survey operations, reducing the cost to taxpayers and the burden on Australian households.
            This decision has been informed by public submissions, public testing and the conduct of a Privacy Impact Assessment.


          • That actually makes a whole lot of sense
            Man I would love to get hold of that data and be given free reign to hunt for random patterns

          • Well… as far as providing context for stats goes, they’re not wrong.

            Still a pretty damn huge risk.

          • Given that it is a risk, I would like to see more justification that the benefit from that context greatly outweighs the corruption of the data from people not answering truthfully.

          • Yeah. They’re probably going to have to come up with a more PR-friendly reason than the real one. ie: “I’m not sure you people realize how much privacy is just an illusion anyway; we can get some real results for the sacrifice of something that doesn’t even exist.”

          • @transientmind
            Yeah, that’s been my conclusion. At first I was concerned but after some consideration, between facebook, google and the government, they already have almost all the information that’ll come up in the census.
            Surely an opt-out system, with an education campaign, would achieve the best of both worlds?

          • But if you give people an opt-out system, then they might actually… y’know. Opt-out. And that’d fuck up the data!

          • In a census massively. And certainly if specific demographics have a much higher rate of opt-out than others.
            Trying to track medical data to disease incidents and your vaccination information is worthless because the same people that think ‘big pharma’ is poisoning people with vaccines are the same ones who don’t trust the government because they will replace people they fear with lizard people wearing human skins.

    • There is a good write up in The Drum. Which even points out that previous Liberal governments have quickly and promptly stomped on requests to store identifying data.

      This coupled with how far out of touch the NSW Lib’s are – I get the feeling the conservative parties are falling apart at the seams.

      It’s strange – Google and Facebook probably know as much about me already as I’d give the ABS in the census. But for some reason, I feel less comfortable giving the ABS my name/address etc when I happily give that to Google and Facebook.

        • Doesn’t work. It asks me to sign in. With an account I don’t have 😛

          And I don’t like using facebook links either, will generally open them in a private window if I have to. I don’t like anyone having my data if I can help it. Actually I do most of my things from a small number of fixed locations, I always only ever used MSN or Skype from my home PC for example. So I guess at the very least someone knows the times when I am at home, or when I’m either out or asleep.

      • That’s because neither of those parties explicitly give you a choice in the matter. You see it in finance all the time; people will happily pay commissions if they aren’t provided a choice in the matter but the moment it becomes a discussion even a $100 fee takes forever to bring them on-board. It’s why all the dodgy planners caught out previously on commission based financial products jumped ship and now palm off mortgages or insurance products instead.

        tl;dr – Choice creates resistance. Remove the choice and people play along.

      • At least you know what they will do with it: use the metadata to sell to advertisers. And you can be sure they also know a thing or two about encryption and data storage.

        Whereas our government is technologically retarded and side with the US in thinking encryption is the devil and privacy is for people with something to hide.
        And god knows what ill advised, half thought out and poorly implemented plan they will come up to use our personal data for, likely leaking it to every vaguely interested party by accident in the process.

    • Yes. At the very least, it should be opt-out. Better to be opt-in.

      UK keeps some of the personal information under the “100-year” rule, on the basis that it’ll be useful to demographers and genealogists of the future, which is fair enough.

  • Played Cosmic encounter online with @trjn , @redartifice @cj and my brother last night.
    I Was so out of it I forgot to update my score as we played. so when I Did a negotiation with red I won. So funny. Sorry for sorta not really cheating!

    • Do any banks support it yet?

      I work in one of the majors and so far I’ve heard zero information on us supporting it.

      NFC is already done on the banks apps on Android at least. PayPal takes care of my streamlined/express checkout. It does bring new features to the table that would be good to see – boarding passes, gift card value etc.

      My understanding is that most banks in Australia want to share a much smaller portion of the already smaller interchange fee charged when a transaction happens. Given interchange fees are unlikely to go up. I wonder how long Apple will hold out before negotiating a deal that suits Australia… Unless Apple unlocks the NFC on the 6S so the banks can use it for their own apps… It only took 4 years for Google to do it…

      • Apparently no. It’s only shit like AMEX & QANTAS credit cards so boo. Just with me i’m more likely to forget my wallet than my phone. Like today, I went to work left wallet at home & had no money on me when I got to work, which was frustrating lol.

        But yeah, you’re right on the money with the fee thing.

        Haha, it’d only take my bank another 5 or so years to do something like that if Apple allow such. Since they only *just* brought out an iOS App, the twits.

  • Crap. I spaced out and forgot that even though I came in to work early to wait for someone I actually have a ton of work to do here. I went straight into killing time mode and wasted two hours… smooth start to the day.

  • So last night was mod hunting in XCOM 2, now the Tech Knight soldiers all have halo helmets on and speak like Space Marines, killing aliens and ADVENT in the name of the Emperor, it’s just the best! 🙂

  • @redartifice @tech_knight @freezespreston @beeawwb

    Take two for Pathfinder tonight if you’re all still up for it. Usual times and whatnot.

  • Spoilered because politics and this is making my see red.

    Can these MPs behave any more like a bunch of spoilt 9 year olds?

    They wanted a review of the Safe Schools program. Review gets done. Findings say program is good, fits the aim of the national curriculum and makes a few reasonable recommendations.

    And the conservative righteous idiots come out saying the report is rubbish and the terms of reference were too narrow because it wasn’t the report they wanted.

    I cannot believe we somehow elected these fuckwits to be our representatives.

    • Yeah, it’s utterly pathetic bully behaviour. How it must feel to be a GLBTI kid at the moment.

      These are the same dickheads who want an exemption from discrimination laws for the plebiscite. Dear Gods, that’s going to be a shitshow

    • What is interesting is that some of them are saying “We gave them a very tight specification of review” which reads to me as if to say, “We told them to reccomend scrapping the fucking thing, why didnt they?”

      • I’m hoping (probably in vain) that somewhere along the process Turnbull flexed some muscle to make sure report was… reasonable? unbiased?

        Or am I asking for too much here…

    • It’s like the stupid halal inquiry and the wind farms inquiry. Certain stupid politicians believe that they’re correct but they have to go through the process of having someone else confirm their stupidity. Turns out they get really angry when everyone else doesn’t support them.

      You’re right. They’re basically little kids having temper tantrums because they were told stuff they didn’t want to hear.

    • This is a genuinely serious question. Why are politicians not required to pass an IQ/social intellect test before they take office? Don’t we have something similar before kids can apply to study medicine?

      • Because many of them would do quite well on that scale. Hell half of them are lawyers.
        A morals and empathy test might give different results

      • At the very least some kind of basic economics course. I think it was 1997 when Pauline Hanson stood up in Parliament and asked why we weren’t solving our foreign debt problem by printing more money and using that to pay our debt.

  • Strategy/Simulation/Management games, go!
    Conceptually, I like the idea of something like Sins of the Solar Empire, but I tried playing Rebellion and just couldn’t get into it. I’ve played plenty of Prison Architect since around halfway through its alpha, but I’m growing tired of it. Played plenty of Crusader Kings 2 but, like Prison Architect, it’s time to move onto something else. When I get home, I’ll go through my steam library and try and narrow things down…

    • Children of the Nile
      Reus if you are after something light and shorter in timeframe
      Endless legend is apparently good and could work for you, there is a set turn limit so you don’t just hit an endless stalemate

      • I totally max out the turn limit and I can’t remember if I found a mod to disable it. I like me the loooooong game.

      • Children of the Nile is the (kinda) sequel to Pharaoh, isn’t it? I couldn’t get past the early 3d graphics – I do love going back to Pharaoh and Caesar every now and then.
        Long time Civ fan, regularly play 5 and occasionally go back and play Alpha Centauri; Beyond Earth makes me sad.
        Endless legend looks fun, might have to go watch a Let’s Play of both that and of Reus – cheers!

        • yeah I got it because I remember playing Caesar 2 (I think that version) and enjoying it but when I went back to get it it was too dated. So CotN was my replacement caesar. It is rather good, I went through and completed all the campaigns, All the DLC and all the achievements.
          But of your list I would give Tropico a go which is similar in style to Caser/CotN but a bit more financially focus, but not in a bad way

    • Go with some ‘lite’ strategy games, like Europa Universalis 4! 😀

      Orrrrrrr on a more realistic answer, for ultra-lite, try Kaiju-A-GoGo.
      Step it up a little? I recommend Game Developer Tycoon. Very ‘one more turn’ish.
      Wanna get more into 4X territory? Endless Space is pretty damn great, and if you start hankering a little more depth there’s always the classic Galactic Civilization 2. (I haven’t actually tried 3 yet, even though I own it.)

      Entirely unrelated:
      I was trying to find my games library by doing a google search of my steam community profile, and I stumbled across my screenshots library. …I’m bloody hilarious. Or at least, Mass Effect 2 is, unintentionally.

      • Haha, “lite”. Tried EUIV, but I always end up going back to CKII. Just put both Game Dev Tycoon and Endless Space on my wishlist. Thanks!

    • Alright, so strategy and sim games in my library:
      Age of Empires 2, Banished, Cities: Skylines, Company of Heroes, Company of Heroes 2, DEFCON, Democracy 2, Empire: Total War, Europa Universalis IV, Expeditions: Conquistador, FTL, Goat Simulator, Medieval 2: Total War, Papers Please, Prison Architect, Sid Meier’s Civ III, Sid Meier’s Civ IV, Sid Meier’s Civ V, Sid Meier’s Beyond Earth, Sid Meier’s Railroads, Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellon, Smugglers V, Stronghold 3, This War of Mine, Total War: Shogun 2, Tropico 4, Tropico V, XCOM 2, XCOM: Enemy Unknown, Zafehouse: Diaries.

      • Ooh! Play DEFCON! It’s short. And depressing. So depressing.

        Papers, Please is less a strategy game as much as a memory tester timed puzzle game. But it’s still an excellent use of your time.

        You should be doing XCOM if you haven’t. You should be doing XCOM now.

  • So i’ve had my new phone (iPhone 6S) for about 12 hours now. Really enjoying it, it’s nice to be using an iPhone that is the latest & greatest which is insanely snappy.

    • As much as I used to love my apple phones I now really hate my apple phones =,= But enjoy the new phone feeling =P

      • Haha. First time i’ve ever owned a brand new smartphone. I feel so adult haha. Bought it outright too which is nice.

        • Yeah I know the feeling; I was walking around with an ancient flip phone motorola a few years back. Fast forward 6 months in a waitering job and I go and sign up for an iphone plan =P It’s a very intuitive phone but it’s kind of life facebook; you really need to sink your teeth into it to make sure it’s not doing/recording/helping with stuff you don’t want it to.

          I switched away from them primarily because after using 3 generations of the phone I realized the company wasn’t innovating at all outside of a hardware perspective. And that’s not a characteristic I want from my tech. So swapped to Samsung for the first time towards the end of last year.

          • Haha yeah. I bought mine outright because well Telstra couldn’t offer me a good data option with a phone, but could with a sim only plan, the jerks.

            Fair enough, everyones different. I don’t think I could ever switch to Android & like the idea that my phone whether it be a flagship model or otherwise might not get updated the following year OS wise or the fact i’d have to wait for the carrier to approve the update, that I find annoying & problematic. Then again last time I used Android was when my mate had an S3 I think..

          • To be fair I’m not your typical Android user; I’m using the accessibility version of the OS which turns it into a prettier iOS interface =P I’m probably missing out on 60% of the settings I could muck around with but that’s ok. It’s still faster than my last iPhone and I like the notepad thingy when its in sleep mode on it 😀

  • Soooo. I just watched the VR Demo. Couldnt get inside it, but it looked pretty cool, Very responsive. Seemed to work well.

  • I went to the doctors yesterday about my food issues and he made me feel a lot better.
    I need to only lose 5 kilos to be my appropriate weight, so I’m not too bad.
    I also need to eat more fruit and vegetables. I’m thinking to replace snacks with them.

    • Fruit is my weakness, I eat more fruit than any human probably should.
      I need to drop about 5kg as well to be at my recommended weight. I spend some time each night cutting up veges and putting them in containers with water in them, and snack on those the next day. There is also a Kale salad at Coles with a yoghurt dressing that is amazingly delicious, I use it for larger snack attacks. I’m hopeful that I will be back to my fighting weight for supanova sydney.

  • Spaghett checking in

    Last song played game time!! for me it was probably the album Paracosm by Washed Out

    But on my commute this morning I was listening to VORW – The Voice of The Report of the Week

    And it’s Thursday!! So keeeeeeeeen for the weekend!

      • Yeah. Go to a BWS & pick up a 6 pack of Guinness for $10 when you spend $29 or more in store! (which you can do by buying a carton of Sol!) 😛

        Aw now I wish I knew of a pub around here with it on tap 🙁

          • Basically my reaction & my bosses & everyone I work with 😛 It’s so average. Also it’s made in the Netherlands, yet it’s a ‘Mexican’ beer.

          • One of the most magnificent trolls I have ever seen was on a homebrewing forum, someone asked for a recipe to make corona (pretty largely derided in the HB community, who tend to favour big dark and/or hoppy beers); a forum regular posted an absolute monster of a recipe with every possible detail covered – it would’ve taken 5-10 minutes to read through it quickly – then concluded with “once the bottle fermentation is complete, invite a few friends over and drink a case of this and remember to save the bottles! Then, when you need to relieve yourself of all your fine work, piss into the bottles and recap them – there is your corona”.

        • That’s a good deal, but I have two craft breweries down the road >:D
          Although usually, I just get a long neck of Cooper’s Best Extra Stout and have that. It has lovely coffee tones to it.

          • I’d be picking Coopers too. Since Guinness from a bottle or even can is meh at best i’ve found D=

    • This is one of the few days of the year that I genuinely miss being at university. 9am lecture, bar at 11 for a guinness, crazy green stuff everywhere.

      • Whether or not to break my diet for a stout tonight. Should’ve thought about this yesterday and gone and got ingredients for a steak and guinness pie, could’ve had a couple of blades in the slow cooker as we speak… maybe a fish and potato pie instead.

  • Mornin’ everyone.

    It’s a lovely day here so far after the last few days being rainy & miserable. I can hear magpies singing which is always awesome.

  • iOS you’re weird. For some reason it went & decided a few friends in my messages needed pictures so it took their Facebook pictures, yet I don’t have it set up to do that..

  • I have some bad news. I cannot post dad jokes tomorrow (and probably not any future Friday) due to working away in an agency’s office so won’t have access to Kotaku.
    I trust that you will all contribute in my absence.


    Why should it be up to universities to deny access to students without a piece of paper that says they completed mathematics? Surely a bunch of fails in first semester for those who can’t achieve the requirements is sufficient, without denying access to those who can.
    NSW secondary curriculae, on the other hand, need to stop watering down maths intensive subjects by not forcing students to take the full mathematics course alongside them. Physics needs calculus and, perhaps more controversially, I think software design could really benefit from more probability and some discrete mathematics.

      • I quite enjoy it, but simply considering at a high-school level – understanding that we implement plenty of mathematics within software, and we cannot truly execute an iterative continuous function like that of a derivative or integral within software – and some of the simple ways around it, would be useful for students. Also, the fields of statistics and probability have huge use for software developers, but teaching something as simple as a monte carlo estimation couldn’t be in the current curriculum because there might be students there who aren’t doing any maths.
        In either case, these thing are more useful than being taught the specification of single-precision floating point numbers, which was there when I did the subject.

        • I totally can’t even remember what derivatives or integrals are. Or what they’re for. Actually I’m not sure I ever knew what they were for, other than torturing us in maths class.

          • One of my points in my response to @cookingmama – unless you go into STEM, you probably don’t need them. I use them weekly, if not more frequently.

          • I went into Computer Science, and later games programming, thankfully never had to use them 😛

          • That doesn’t even sound remotely familiar. Geez, what were they even teaching us? 😛

            Actually I just remembered one of them was something about calculating the area under the line on the graph. But again, nfi what relevance that had to anything beyond “so this is kinda neat”.

          • Integrating a curve finds the area. It’s good for stuff like cumulative amounts- if you know how fast water has been flowing into a dam over time when the rate hasn’t been consistent, you can find how much water is in the dam (as a real basic example). Another use of integrals is finding bisections of shapes and volumes, which has all sorts of engineering uses

            The first derivative of a graph of position over time is the velocity at a given point (The velocity being the rate of change in position over time), and the second derivative is the acceleration (The rate of change of the velocity).

    • It’s actually more a problem outside the traditional STEM subjects. Education and Psychology both require a robust understanding of statistics, but unless it’s a pre-requesite, there are students going into those subjects without having done ANY maths since year 10. It’s just not good enough that mathematics isn’t a compulsory subject in year 11 and 12. The problem is the “general” course doesn’t contain enough data and finance, and the calculus courses aren’t really appropriate if you’re not heading into STEM.

      Unfortunately, tweaking curriculum is a slow process, and the states are already struggling under the demands of the National Curriculum and NAPLAN.

      • Tweaking curriculum is a process implemented by committees, and like most government sponsored/run/implemented things, the end result is a product of many requirements long removed from the desired outcome. If you were to try and “fix” the maths courses, how would you go about it?
        I’d start by defining the desired outcomes for a student having taken one of the courses – you have the lowest tier, what was once called Maths for (in?) Society, you have an upper tier that is probably equivalent to Extension I in NSW that is ideally Maths for STEM (Maybe Maths for STE) and probably both an intermediate for people who need a broader understanding of maths than the lower tier, and a super extension hard unit for the students to really stretch themselves. So, although I didn’t intend on it, I’ve ended up with 4 levels much like NSW. The intermediate level, you’d be comparing to the full course as it is, and a vast majority of people don’t need calculus. Similarly, the lowest tier has no need of plenty of the stuff they’re exposed to – they do need more stats, probability, tax and arithmetic though.

        • I know a teacher who was just lamenting the fact that she has a kid who’s graduating next year and still can’t write every letter of the alphabet. Never been held back a year to y’know… fix that.

          We don’t hold kids back anymore, apparently. Parents freak the fuck out and blame teachers for not teaching properly, and then turn to the plentiful evidence to support that retention damages their esteem, which is apparently more important than knowing how to read or write.

          Because kids who are behind are obviously going to go great at catching up not only what they missed in the last year, but what they missed while they were catching up…

          That’s where we’re at. Kids who can’t read or write, graduating from primary. Because emotional health is more important than an ability to successfully navigate one of the most important methods for interaction in this world.

          • Yep, and this is the difficulty. Attending university really is a privilege, and universities have the luxury of choosing their students, but schools do not. So we can’t just debate the nuances of education for the top 20% going to uni, we also need to be worrying about the bottom 20% who might graduate school lacking functional literacy and numeracy (and by functional, I mean they can read and write, but lack the comprehension to do things like understand a bank letter or fill in a form).

          • Not true, I am a teacher, and repeating kids is still done, we have around 6 a year or so, at a school with 800 kids, but there is huge pressure from some parents not to, and some parents do refuse to believe that home lif also needs to be adjusted if their child has learning or behavioural problems. They believe the school should ‘fix it’ or that the problem is with anyone but them and their child.

            If the person is 18 and still can’t write each letter of the alphabet, then repeating a year would not have helped, that points to a pretty serious problem.

            If kids can’t read or write when coming out of primary, again, there is either a learning disability that is not being addressed, or serious problems at home, or both.
            We have reading recovery programs, aides that work with one child at a time on reading specifically, and funding is available if a learning disability is acknowledged.
            A few of the problems we regularly are seeing now is parents refusing to acknowledge that the child has a learning disability, so not allowing them to go into the more intensive programs, and not allowing the schools to get funding. We have kids coming into kindy that can barely speak or be understood, and have quite literally never had a book read to them, or even know how to hold a book or which way up it goes. We have other kids coming into Kindy that can already read and have had literally thousands of books read to them since birth. In the hours you have at school, when some kids are already effectively 3 years behind when they start, and unsupportive parents, it is extremely difficult to get all of them caught up, no matter what happens within the school.

            ICE addiction has become a massive problem too, the amount of parents who are ice addicts would astound you, and their kids have little chance.

            A big problem is the curriculum, so much has been jammed in there, because it is easy politically and also gets community support to put ‘more’ in the curriculum. Kids learning ‘more’ has to be better, right? No politician would ever dare say, ‘let’s have kids learn less things’, but that is precisely what needs to happen. There is so much jammed into the curriculum, that it is difficult to get any depth. So the kids learn 100 things in a shallow manner, rather than learning 50 things deeply and well. The focus on having to ‘prove’ that you have met the thousands of ‘learning outcomes’ in the curriculum also means that teachers are often nearly forced into using worksheets, as it is difficult otherwise to prove you have met the standards, keep your accreditation and keep the department and parents happy. Most want a ‘big thick book of work’ to see that the kids are working, where it often is not the right way, it is an impressive big thick book of shallowly understood concepts.

            It is a lot more complex than not wanting to hurt kids’ feelings, teachers are expected to be more highly qualified than ever, there is a push to make a Masters qualification mandatory, because of low funding we spend on average over $4000 per year on class materials for students out of our own pockets, and are amongst the lowest paid profession that requires a university degree, and the workforce is being pushed to casual work, with no job security. The holidays are good, but the unpaid hours are huge, and class sizes are forever creeping higher, our school had a 22 per class policy, but every class is 30+ now, and many have classes with multiple kids from families with drug, alcohol and gambling problems, which often means *severe* behavioural problems.
            Last year my partner, who is a full time teacher had a knife thrown at her in class, by a 10 year old girl, and months later the same student bought a weapon to school with the stated intent of harming another student, and when I say harming, you know what I mean.

            A good look at the curriculum, with a focus on learning deeply, more funding for schools (I can’t believe they are pulling the Gonski funding, it is so critical!), and some government policies to address the social breakdown that has allowed gambling, drugs and alcohol to gain such a foothold in families, would be more than welcome.

      • My Mum, her sister, and their friends are all teachers dealing with cirriculum/NAPLAN bullshit, and oh my god does that sound hellish to me as an outsider.

        We have so many competing priorities which now are including emotional well-being and rounding that the basics are being left behind because it’s almost as if you can’t insist that all teachers be registered nurses with no lunch-breaks, losing kids from core maths/english periods for the sake of social studies, music, LOTE, fitness, and in some places, religion… and not have something give way.

        There has to be some point where sanity prevails and teachers stop being pushed to be basically de facto parents and guardians instead of what they’re supposed to be: educators.

        Mum’s always claimed I’d do really well in teaching and enjoy it, and brought it up again when I mentioned how much I was enjoying these training programs I’ve been running… but there’s no way in hell I could tolerate the pure bullshit that is the education system right now.

        • I disagree with your point on maths/english vs social studies. It’s a common utilitarian view of education that the 3 Rs are the end all and be all, but it’s not true. All topics in high school- and yes, that includes ‘softer’ topics like social studies and art and music- are aimed at producing more well-rounded members of society, not “good workers.” Without art, without social studies, we may turn out kids who can add and write, but we don’t turn out humans with knowledge of society, or humans who can express themselves, or humans motivated by passions to improve themselves in other areas. And that’s important.

          I’m a science graduate: I studied hard sciences at school, and at university, but a common trap people in that area fall into (myself included) is denigrating stuff that’s not hard science based. That’s a trap, and it’s a view I’ve moved from and now disagree with. Humanities are important

          • The point is that there’s no room for it. At some point you need parents to educate as well – the way it used to be. When you only have 6hrs in the day and you cram in all those extra activities plus all the other ’emotional health’ bullshit that they shouldn’t have to do, you end up with exactly what a teacher was lamenting to me:

            They have two kids who cannot read and write, who are graduating from Primary next year. One of them can’t even draw every letter of the alphabet.

            But I’ll bet that kid sure is well-rounded and emotionally healthy!

            That’s why what we’re doing is failing. And no amount of penalizing school funding based on their NAPLAN results is going to fix that.

            Parents need to be taking more responsibility for their part in education.

          • So what are you gonna do? Sit in every parent’s house and poke them until they take an interest in little timmy’s education? Isn’t going to happen. Never has happened- the “way it used to be” never, ever was. There’s always been a percentage of kids that, tragically, got left behind because of their upbringing, or because their learning difficulties weren’t identified. Now, my were both teachers (retired now), and my dad will tell you that of course drugs have had an impact on families, but pretending in the past that “things were better” is plum not true.

            In an ideal world schools would have the funding to help students who were falling behind, and enough teachers employed to help them, and a greater focus on students moving into VET education when university isn’t going to be for them. You’d have spaces where kids whose home life isn’t great could go and get their questions answered and study done, and access to greater numbers of counselors and mental health resources that they felt safe in accessing.

          • To clarify, I think the humanities are vital, but I think they’re also less suited to the school system, with 35 kids packed into a room. Oh, I know, it’s ideally only meant to be 20-25 kids packed into a room, but this is the real world, and this is what happens when we don’t give two shits about education spending.

            What’re we gonna do beyond monitoring parenting? Be less involved. Cut back on those programs. Give awareness of the fact that the humanities exist, point to where they can do co-curricular learning. Let the vacuum be filled organically.

            Motivation to engage in those humanities’ learnings is always much higher from students than for the things that they HAVE to be there for, so their out-of-school engagement will likely be stronger anyway… if their guardians can be bothered to support it. Music, art, literature, sports… all things many kids would be into even if they weren’t forced to learn about them, without being given two periods a week for each subject. And they can absolutely still touch on them but if you’ve ever seen a teacher wrestle with a modern lesson plan and the spaces they have available to squeeze in some basic maths you’d be horrified at how little a percentage of the week it’s allocated.

            And that’s before you even get into the factor that basic psychology plays in which times of day kids are receptive to learning different types of things (morning vs afternoon, before/after lunch – ask your parents, they’ll tell you), which conflicts directly with the cost-effective logistics of paying the externals who teach those warm-fuzzies.

            Teacher staff-room real-talk is this: Teachers have to compete and get political about who can get good slots for their kids to actually learn a damn thing when they don’t have music/sports/art/lote/religion/feelgoods. That’s just… so wrong.

            Now I don’t have the qualifications to expertly critique the curriculum, but it’s very, very hard to see increasingly worse results for basic literacy and numeracy, and a correlating reduced allocation of time for basic literacy and numeracy in the curriculum, and not assume that maybe there’s a causal effect.

            The key problem in my opinion is that we don’t want it to take a village to raise a child… we want to put them in the school system and let it take care of everything, without increasing the time or money they have to do it, or acknowledging that some fields are better learned outside of the rigid-by-necessity formalized education system.

            You see it in the tone of the complaints that hit social media any time there’s a possibility of pupil-free days or teacher strikes, or any other kind of interruption to education… parents don’t give a shit that this is the week they were supposed to learn about numerators and denominators. They’re pissed that the state-run babysitter isn’t available.

            What are we going to do?

            Museums, art galleries, theatres, conservatoriums, and libraries could be deputized in the education process in a much bigger way. They’re already state/privately-funded, and already have attention-starved staff designing and running programs which need attendance… get kids attending! Out of school hours.

            (Edit: But what if they don’t turn up? Well. What if they don’t turn up to school at all? Truancy is already a tired joke. Discipline is no longer something that schools are capable of enforcing beyond kicking a student out. That’s it. Litigation has increased, and teachers go on suspension on a kid’s word faster than ever before, and over far less. God help you if you’re a male teacher, in particular, with all of the open and utterly unashamed assumptions of unspeakable motivations.)

            ‘Things were better’ is difficult to argue in terms of emotional health, but literacy and numeracy is decreasing. It’s measurable. It’s being tracked. It’s getting worse. That part was better ‘in the olden days’. And the confidence that comes with having the tools you need to analyze and navigate the world, to be employable, to seek out opportunities… it has to be worth something in the emotional well-being stakes.

          • The idea of co-curricular activities being provided outside of school as a substitute for learning at school is, frankly, a way to entrench disadvantage. I’ve got no problem with schools partnering with local organisations/museums/providers to deliver stuff, but if you rely on them to teach stuff in place of schools you’re only enabling those with the time/money to get ahead. You’re also privileging students based on geography- I went to primary school in a country town, museums/theatres/conservatoriums were nowhere near available, Now, I was lucky- if the nearest museum (> 1 hour away) had had a program out of school hours, my parents would have got me there, but the next kid over, whose parents aren’t as well off/work shifts/ can’t otherwise get there? No chance.

            On the other topics you mentioned- all other topics at school have components that support literacy and numeracy and communication. if a kid is passionate about technology studies over maths, but gets his maths through doing tech stuff that will lead him to a trade? go him.

            Hoping that outside institutions arise to fill a vacuum? They tried that, in the UK, as part of the “big society” concept, and libraries and other services closed. More funding, better targeted funding to schools, more teachers, better support, and increased individualisation in learning. these are the way that great education systems are built

            A School, ideally, is a great equaliser. A kid should be able to succeed at school with no outside activities, provided they get the support they need at home. I agree, many parents don’t provide that support, so we should invest in schools and services that can provide that support. I’m not abrogating parents of support, not by a long stretch, but the truth is there’s any number of reasons parents aren’t able to provide support. Again, that doesn’t absolve them, but we can either sit here and wish parents got their shit together or we can invest in other things.

            As for the decline in literacy and numeracy (hard to measure, for sure)? There’s lots of factors that could impact there. In previous years we’ve measured it differently. We were closer to a monoculture, so we were dealing with less cultural barriers. We plain didn’t count many groups. Kids stay in school longer, where perhaps previously they would have dropped out.

            At the end of the day, I don’t think we’re fundamentally disagreeing on the point the education is important, and should be better. I’d rather improve it by turbocharging and innovating the institutions we have, and as I said, supporting students to be whole humans rather than prioritising literacy and numeracy at the expense of other stuff

          • Of course, we could also keep kids at school for longer, extending the hours in the day… but growing bodies and minds are likely not receptive to that kind of intensity over longer periods. And good luck convincing the public to pay teachers more for being there longer.

            Not when we already have ignorant twits who think teaching’s a cushy 9-3 job because they don’t know the first fucking thing about what teachers actually do.

          • Hah. The thing about extending the school day is this: It would benefit the kids who are already succeeding, but it wouldn’t lift the kids who are on the bottom. Especially in hard socioeconomic areas, the kids on the bottom who are already being sent to school without breakfast starve for longer, the kids who have sleep disrupted for whatever reason get tireder, and little is gained for them.

          • We have a breakfast club at our school, available to all kids, and it works fantastically. There is no stigma as all students can access it, and for many kids, yep it is the only real meal they will get that day.
            There were no ‘good old days’ but the social fabric is coming apart at the seams, and you see it first at the schools, they are the canary in the coalmine so to speak, and as a society, we really should start to listen.

    • 1st year Uni maths was reheated year 12 maths, from memory. For me it was easy going, but if like @cookingmama says you haven’t done maths since year 10 I imagine it’s a pretty steep learning curve

      • What program did you do, if you don’t mind me asking? First year maths, as I remember it in Engineering, took about 6 weeks and blasted through the important parts of 11/12 maths + extension I, and then it was into the year 12 extension II, and new content.

        Edit: Blasted through the year 11/12 content in 6 weeks, and then continued for another 7 weeks, to be clear – it wasn’t a 6 week course.

        • Nanotechnology. It covered some extra stuff, but especially first semester was a redo of Maths Studies and Specialist Maths.

          This Mathematics topic covered sciences and engineering.

      • I remember our first two lectures went through the entire Ext.2 syllabus, then we moved straight on to differential equations and linear algebra… Needless to say, lot of people struggled to keep up – trial by fire, I guess. Reminds me of my HSC math teacher giving me a “[2U topic] in 5 minutes” run-through to prepare me for some Ext.2 topics when we started outpacing the 2U and Ext.1 lesson plans. 😛

        • I will never forget being years out of school and going back to uni, doing my first introductory physics course…

          The first lecture of the semester took about 45min to run through everything we covered in Years 11 and 12, and finished the summary with an eyeroll, shrug, and comment, “…Duh.” Like this was all shit that should be fresh in our memories and basic foundation that we know backwards. The other students laughed. I widened my eyes and started sweating at how much catch-up I needed to do.

          • Actually, I recall university physics going something along the lines of

            “Forget everything you learned in high school. It’s either wrong or oversimplified”

          • heh. The problem with HS physics is that because it’s taught at the same time as the maths needed to understand it, it can’t use those mathematical tools to explain it.

            Looking back, I don’t know how you can be expected to understand anything about electromagnetism without waveforms

          • Ah yes, the old high school physics teacher dilemma. “F=ma” “Why?” “…”

            My favourite part of Ext.2 maths was deriving all the formulae for Newtonian mechanics I’d taken for granted.

          • @redartifice Indeed… I swear I remember deriving mechanics stuff back then… must have just confused the algebra/geometry derivations with the mechanics stuff.

          • Yea, it was kindof a bait-and-switch by the uni… the course guide only recommended Ext.1 maths. It was brutal – it had taken me 6-8 months of study to master what they were trying to come to grips with in two weeks.

            On the up side, I was suddenly a popular study-buddy :3

    • For my money, this is a good move to stop the waste of time and resources and student debt that is allowing people to fail who are very clearly going to fail.

      Resourcing is an issue. It’s the primary reason that grade requirements to get into courses aren’t based on how academically-intensive a subject might be, but rather how popular it is, and how many places they have for it vs expressed interest.

      Every student you allow into a course who shouldn’t be there is edging out someone else.

      And minimizing the impact on drop-outs who now have HELP debt and nothing to show for it because they were allowed to engage in an activity they had no business attempting? That’s just socially responsible.

      • I had an interesting conversation with a university professor a couple months ago. He was from the school of psychology and was using big data analytics to investigate students that were dropping out in the first year, using all of the data the university had gathered from their online and library resources.

        Basically, he had established (unsurprisingly) that the students who were more likely to succeed were the ones who were more active on the chat boards and using university resources more- asking questions, using the library, using the email. He had refined his model to the point where he could predict if a student was going to drop out by week 6. Only problem is, by week six, often times the ship has sailed and the student already knows they are going to drop. He was currently working on refining his model so he could predict it earlier, so that a lecturer or tutor could engage with them and course-correct. Fascinating use of big data analytics.

        The other problem he admitted to me is that he could only see what the University could see, so If a student was asking on reddit or facebook for assistance he couldn’t see it

  • Bugger, Dick Smiths looks to be totally sold out of PS4 Eye Cameras.
    Hopefully someone does a decent bundle when PSVR comes out cause damned if I’m paying near $90 for one.

    • Yea, their online site was out of stock within an hour of that article yesterday. Oh well, I’m sure someone’ll put together a bundle. Sony may be targeting early adopters, but retailers will want as many potential sales as possible, and will see the demand for it.

  • Oh wow.. This Telstra 4G/4GX is insane. I just got download speeds of 177 Mbps & upload speed of 29Mbps. I know the upload could be better buuuuuut holy shit.

  • When I was a kid, my parents would always say, “Excuse my French” just after a swear word.
    I’ll never forget the first day at school when my teacher asked if any of us knew French.


    • I came home from work early one night to find my wife and my best mate, sweaty and breathless in the living room. I said, “What’s going on?”
      My wife said, “Erm… We’ve been playing on the Wii Fit.” She winked at my mate and said, “Dave did VERY well.”
      As I walked out of the room, I heard them giggling and calling me an idiot, but I had the last laugh. I checked the next day, and none of his scores had even registered!

    • I’ve been admitted to Hospital. I wont be on line for a while. I’ve just gone and poisoned myself.
      I ate what I thought was an onion but it was a Daffodil Bulb.
      They said I’ll be out sometime in the Spring.

    • One day a panda walks into a bar. Orders a meal and quietly eats it. When the bartender comes with the check, the panda pulls out a gun, shoots the bartender, and starts to leave the bar. The bartender screams “Why?!” The panda pulls out a dictionary, points to the entry on pandas, which reads: Panda (n.) – Eats shoots and leaves

    • Yay! I didn’t see this yesterday so technically I still got my Dadjokefriday! 😀 I have to admit to suffering some withdrawal symptoms at the start of the day….

  • “What’s your surname Gooky? I’m a bit ocd about entries in my phone and yours is bothering meeeee!”

    Uh oh. Not sure if thinly-veiled stalking attempt.

      • Yes, that was how I obtained the phone number in the first place. Well, I said I don’t have Facebook, so I guess that doesn’t necessarily rule out the possibility of other things to find. And while I do try to keep my surname as far away from the internet as possible, the occasional thing does annoyingly slip through.

      • All I gave her was an initial. Then we went through this whole thing where I ended up guessing hers so she was trying to guess mine even though it’s pretty impossible to give clues for, so I asked if I should just tell her the answer. Then gave her the initial again 😛

        Been called a jerk several times now, I think things are going well.

  • Lol. Someone told me off for buying an iPhone 6S when I should’ve waited for the iPhone 7, they tell me. With that logic I should wait indefinitely. The next iPhone is still 6 or 7 months away from being shown off & released to the sheep. Also I deserve this dang it!

    • I never get the “regular” version. I wait for the S because it’s the same product with tweaks/improvements. Handily, my phone contract rolls over a few months after the S usually comes out. Got my 6S in January.

      • Yep. That’s the way I see it. All the good new fancy shit comes out in the S variant so why wouldn’t I want that over the regular numbered model anyway 😛

    • I’m probably getting the 7S immediately when it comes out and is unfortunately at its most expensive. My 5S is getting far too long in the tooth, but I’m strongly opposed to having to use one of the giant phones that have defined the current generation.

      • What about the 5SE that’s rumoured to be debuting this month? It’s meant to have the same internals as the 6. I presume by the time the 7S rolls around they’d have an equivalent 4 inch model. Also imo the 4.7 screen is great. Then again I have large hands so it works for me heh.

  • Bravely Second

    Thanks to the awesome efforts of @blaghman for sending me a fresh 3DS & the not so awesome efforts of another lung infection I’ve been able to put a good few hours in.

    @negativezero ‘s fears that the game was somehow diminished by the moral choices being gimped has been negated by the fact (& this is surely due to my love of the job system) that choices not only choose a side story outcome but also which old job (from Bravely Default) you get. For me, the harder choice is not the moral outcomes, but which job I’m opening up & which I’m blocking.

    So far so good on the gameplay front, same as the first game but with these new, non-traditional jobs (they’ve only mildly changed since Final Fantasy III), it’s forcing me to apply new tactics that I wouldn’t have normally relied on. It’s great, because it’s still similar but different enough to be interesting without the feeling of having to relearn everything.

    So peeps like @nobulus ( or is it @sernobulus ?) needn’t be afeared. This game is tops & if there isn’t late game repetitious boredom, it will knock Bravely Default from my personal second favourite 3DS game.

    Quality stuff! 🙂

    • Been wanting to get Bravely Second finished before DS3 hits the shelves, few days since release has been unproductive due to heat and laziness in general, troubling to hear about that job problem but I did some reading and I think post game they unlock everything?

      • I didn’t see it as a problem so much as an interesting choice. And yeah, I believe later on you can get the others. So the choice is more about which job is the most useful at the time.

        Because I love this job system so much, the choice carries a lot more weight for me than the story bit.

        But that’s more me, I get a lot more from gameplay than story (not to dis the story).

      • I think I’ll wait for the GotY DS3, since I’ve yet to finish Demons, DS2 or BB.

        I couldn’t put DS1 down until I’d completed it, the others are taking me a lot longer.

    • Meh. It’s not out here until the end of April and I’m in no rush to play it. The cuts and asinine censorship bother me a lot and I’m still not even sure I’ll buy it at all.

        • If you’re still enjoying it despite all the compromises then that’s good for you. It doesn’t mean I have to feel the same about it though.

          FWIW I haven’t even unwrapped my copy of Fire Emblem Fates yet because of the same sort of localization bullshit. Most people don’t care and I recognize that, but I do. It’s not like there’s a shortage of games for me to enjoy. I’ll stick to the ones that aren’t localized by conservatives with their heads firmly lodged up their asses.

      • Have they specified if the cuts were only for the US version? Were different changes made for the EU/AU region? I haven’t seen anything indicating that there is one overall Western version for all countries and one Japanese version.

        • EU version of Bravely Second has cuts. US isn’t out until April.

          US version of Fire Emblem has cuts. EU isn’t out until May.

          Normally the EU versions are less likely to have stuff cut than the US ones.

          • I’m hoping that EU Fire Emblem is less mutilated that the US version. If it is the same, I’m considering not bothering to pick it up.

            Heck, even Project X Zone 2 has some pretty blatant instances where localisation completely rewrote the original Japanese dialogue but I can kinda give them a pass due to different cultural references. I’m not as willing to be so generous to Fire Emblem and I haven’t made my mind up on Bravely Second yet.

          • I’d be stunned if the EU one was different in dialogue. Maybe less censoring of random images in the game, though I don’t know if there was any of that to begin with.

            The EU version of Awakening didn’t have censorship of visual stuff, but had a bunch of dialogue changed. Specifically one of Nowi’s dialogue sequences where she’s talking about being jealous of Tharja’s “boingy bits” is changed to talking about her hair. There’s a few others like that. Pretty minor though. But Awakening was localized by 8-4, not Treehouse, and 8-4 actually give a damn.

  • Fuck… I can’t stay awake…
    It was too hot to sleep last night, and now it’s almost too wet to do anything.
    Can we just skip today and go straight to Saturday?

  • Murder Mystery parties – suggestions, experiences, reviews? I’ve got a couple of capable roleplayers among my dnd groups, and a couple of friends right into cosplay – I think I could rustle together a pretty good group for a MM.

  • Hello fronds! Are the melb-TAY folk enjoying todays shitty weather?


    so some friends and I (about 10 of us) have been playing on an official server. all was good, got about a months worth of progress, and everyone was having fun… then something really shitty happened. one of the big tribes in the game started attacking all the noob tribes, who stood no chance. So in retaliation, the biggest tribe on the server (bunch of cool guys) took in 2 Gigas and a bunch of other dinos and wiped out two of their bases.

    so anyway they figured they had nothing to lose, so went on a fucking rampage and wiped us out clean. so many hours wasted taming dinos and gathering resources. We attempted to start over, but they just kept coming back for like 2 weeks. Not cool.

    Then it got worse; the guys that went in and wiped out their base for being shitty started getting threats from the others; they had their real names, ip addresses, emails, skype details, etc posted in the live chat which we took screenshots of. Posted a griefing report, and they didnt even entertain it with a “we got your email” response.

    so at this point, we are setting up our own Server!

    as a result we have made some slight alterations. The idea behind this is that everyone has a social life, and we want to give everyone a fair chance to defend themselves!

    Taming speed 20% faster
    Resources Respawn 50% faster
    Food and Water drain 20% slower
    Grieving/Cheating NOT tolerated – You will be banned

    And the big one:

    NO RAIDING ON WEEKDAYS. Server mod prevents damage to other players structures. raiding is auto enabled Fridays at 8pm AEST till Sunday Midnight AEST.

    so yeah if you guys have groups, or want to join as lone wolves, message me on TAY or tweet me and ill let you know once the server is live (should be tonight)

      • It’s finally cooling down at least for a day, I love it!
        I hate Metro at the moment though, leaving me out in the rain this morning. The trains were running late, so I waited for a city loop train, then the norse god Freyr decided to tip his bucket on me and it went from no rain to bucketing like crazy in under a minute. Then the train I managed to catch decided “Oh we’re converting to not go through City Loop this morning” and I’m still drenched so I’m waiting out in the chilly wind with some wet pants that my umbrella couldn’t help. Hopefully I won’t get ill from all this later on.

        I’m a bit cranky at the moment as you might expect 😛

    • You’ve managed to point out both why I love the idea of public servers in Ark and why I’m never going to invest in playing on them.

      If I can catch up on where I’m up to with my current backlog I’ll join in, but we’ll see how that goes first. I think other people that have the game might be keen? @cakesmith @blaghman @sernobulus @gorzilla @pixel_the_ferret_viking @f4ction are some I remember.

  • Was thinking about booting up Dishonored again last night, but decided against it coz the more i thought about it, the more I realised how much that game annoyed me.

    Here – have all these awesome abilities. you cant use them though if you wanna get the ‘good’ ending.
    also, the stealth is a bit frustrating. 100% line of sight reliant. light has no effect whatsoever. that annoyed me. years of playing stealth games where darkness = concealment & then this.

    Dishonord 2 had better ease up on the ‘you can only have 8 deaths happen (wether you caused them or not) throughout the whole game if you dont wanna get the bad ending’ thing.

    anyway. I’ll probably just hold hot until Ubi gets their shit together & puts out another Splinter Cell game.

    • For me, Dishonored was all about listening to the heart reveal everyone’s secrets. Even (especially) your ‘allies’. And that art. Mmmmm, art.

      But yeah, it was kinda frustrating that like… 75% of the unlocks were for lethal playstyles.

        • I only had accidental kills to my name in the base game, but when I played Knife of Dunwall I embraced the knife part of the name.

          • I went into it blind, didn’t know there was an alternate ending for actual stealth, and just murdered everyone.

            No ragrets.

  • 1) Discuss budget document with my boss and his bosses.
    2) I interpret discussion one way to make changes to document, make changes that way
    3) My boss calls and says “no, this is what should be shown.”
    4) Change scenario and send out
    5) Get call from his boss saying “Actually what I wanted to show was XYZ”
    6) Change back to original scenario I had implemented but had rejected by my boss.


      • Noooope. He just delegated this one task to me so I could get some experience in creating budgets. The tl;dr is “My instincts were right and my boss made me change the pack anyway and then I just had to change it back. Grr.”

  • Woah, ExoBiz have just raised their yearly POS license price by 85%, and there are basically no new features compared to last year.
    Feeling gouged!

  • Dear TAY,

    I recently completed Telltale’s Game of Thrones and need some advice. Firstly, I haven’t watched the show, so I was curious to what extent the game and the show overlap?

    Also, I ‘ve played alot of Telltale games, and generally feel I have a good understanding of what my decisions influence vs what is ‘fated’. However, things seemed to go especially bad for the main characters during my playthrough; is there much scope for different outcomes or is it really just a misfortune simulator?

    • The game is set between seasons 3 and four- the start of the game is set during season 3 ep nine. Many characters overlap, nothing in the game is referenced in the TV series.

      “Families have a bad time” is GoT in a nutshell.

      • Do any families have a good time?

        I tried watching the show and was interested enough, but my wife didn’t like it and I choose to game with my alone time.

        I bought the first book but lent it to a guy from work before I read it. He then got a divorce and when I asked for the book back he said it was in the bookshelf of the house he lost in the settlement! He didn’t even offer to buy a replacement 🙁

        So anyway this game is all the GoT I know. I’d be too scared to buy season 2 if they make it though – I didn’t have too many characters left alive to continue on with :p

        • Well the… Um…no, they get killed…um…

          The Boltons do pretty well out of it all? Other than that everyone else has a bad time.

  • so. a new bit of DLC came out for Dawn of War 2 this week.

    this has me excited that Relic are still making stuff for the franchise under sega.


  • In honour of our ol friend @haggis, allow me to drop some Friday goodness.

    A man tried to sell me a coffin the other day.
    I told him that’s the last thing I need!

  • For all those thinking of getting a PS-VR it seems Amazon has listed a “launch Pack” which comes with 2 move controllers and a camera. Assuming we get the same thing here, It might not be worth rushing out and buying the controllers and camera just yet.

    • Would have been nice if they had done that two days ago when they put up the listing so I hadn’t immediately rushed out and bought a camera and move controllers. :\

      • That’s the only reason I want to know! I love this site and giz/lh and would be saddened and disappointed if it gets sold off to a lesser agency that runs it down or closes.

        At the same time what Gawker over seas did is very bad. And suffice to say the comments in court that he (the owner) has made is appalling.

        @alexwalker are you allowed (legally) to shed any light on the matter?

        • I don’t see how they could be sold to a company lesser than Gawker.

          Hopefully they get sold to a company with at least some semblance or a moral compass.

          • Well in another matter Fairfax is doing some job cuts. Not sure if it extends as far as allure media though.

            Hopefully this post gets enough comments to attract the staff’s attention and we can get some more information.

          • Whoa, so many new people to Tay.
            I don’t think it will affect us as while we’re named after the same webpage, everything else is kind of independent. It may only affect the US variation of the brand, as opposed to the others

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