If you watch my stream, I recently played though the campaigns of Halo and Halo 2, on the original Xbox. This started because my computer was doing it’s CS:GO crashing issue (which I solved with a 50% GPU underclock), but once I started I felt like I should keep going. Playing them now, over a decade after they came out, and casually, feels like it gave me a more objective look at how good they are, without any nostalgia effects.
I think that Halo probably edged out Halo 2, which was the opposite of my previous opinion. They were both good, and suffered from the same flaws, but I think the first one was a little better. It’s hard to place my finger on it, but it had a better ‘feel’ to it, like it wasn’t quite so serious, and focused more on good game play and experiences than a good story. One think I noticed in both of them (but maybe more in Halo) was that the level design was very repetitive. so many levels were repeats of earlier ones, or ‘do the level then go backwards through the whole thing’. It wasn’t too bad, but it feels like they did it just to stretch the game out longer. Even on a smaller scale, especially in Halo, the same encounter in the same type of room, over and over again.
Still, there were a few levels that hit it out of the park. ‘Sacred Icon’, in Halo 2, really had amazing level design. So many of the other levels felt bland and empty (probably due to hardware limitations), but this level looked amazing. Maybe it was just because the lack of open areas meant they could pack a lot of detail into the level geometry, but it really came close to the level of the concept art and the design and feel of the level really tickled my pickle.
‘Truth and Reconciliation’ was another great level (from Halo). But, this might be my bias speaking since this was the first level I ever played. The first time I played Halo, or any Xbox game for that matter, I played on this level, at a friend’s house maybe 2003-ish. I remember being blown away by the graphics, especially the flashlights. It also didn’t suffer from the repetitiveness that I mentioned. I might also be biased because I’ve read the books (and know the backstory), and because Halo was ‘the original’.
Apart from that, I’ve been streaming some other games (mostly CS:GO). 4th of July celebrations went well, similar to last year. Work has also been keeping me busy (unfortunately). I’ve got money now from that but I can’t bring myself to spend it on anything.
Apart from those, I ain’t been doing nothing interesting.
May Happenings —
I wanted to write a little blog post but I haven’t because there’s not much to write about, but I should try anyway. Work has been keeping me busy I guess. It’s not particularly fun or interesting, but not the worst job either, so whatever. And it’s a temp job, so only for a few more months anyway. I’ve also been streaming a bunch, mostly CS:GO, the link to my Twitch channel is on the left. I also tweet occasionally, so check that out too.
I’ve been slowly working on recoding the site, but it’s been slow going. There wouldn’t be much of a difference anyway (to you), and the old code still works fine.
It was my birthday last weekend. I didn’t do anything to celebrate, played some games and streamed I think. The only gift I got was a third copy of Shower With Your Dad Simulator 2015 (because I had 2 copies in my inventory already so I must like it) and Nekopara Vol. 1 (because it was in my wishlist) from my brother.
I have a challenge out there, to anyone who reads this. I’m trying to stream audio from my network, over the internet to somewhere else (behind a NAT) using ffmpeg. What I’d like to do is have ffmpeg act like a listen server, wait for the incoming connection from the remote host, then push the stream to it. I’ve messed around with all the -listen options but none of them seem to work like I want (doesn’t wait and errors immediately, requires the remote host address beforehand, etc). I could use ffserver but I was under the impression it’s not really under development or supported anymore, and in any case I don’t know how to use it. VLC is capable of doing what I want, even really old versions, but it doesn’t have the flexibility ffmpeg does. The only way I’ve found to pull this off is to use ffmpeg to push to my RTMP server (which was set up for a different reason), and have the remote host connect to that. The problem is that the delay is huge, and I can’t use Opus like I want (only MP3/AAC). If you know a solution to this problem, I’ll give you a hella cool CS:GO skin.
I still want to do a post on all the anime I’ve watched and the chinese cartoon books I’ve been reading that I talked about many moons ago, I just haven’t got around to it yet. I could probably also write about some of the games I’ve played, too, except most of the ones I’ve been playing are just pure multiplayer.
I also still need to upgrade my server using my old computer parts (the Q6600). For the most part all the old parts are just sitting there, except half the RAM I put in my Dad’s computer (which might have been faulty and broke it). When I do I’ll upgrade the OS too. I’m getting a lot of experience with Debian at my job, and I would totally move to a Linux server if certain things like the Skype Bot didn’t require Windows. I don’t want to mess with VMs either, too much hassle if it’s possible to just use one OS.
Oh I also applied for a passport, after much hassle. I’m the only person I know that has one. I don’t have plans for any travel, but once this temp job is done it’d be nice to take a while off.
I got a job, thought I should mention that. It’s here in Seattle but I’m not looking forward to the commute times. So at least Google indexbots will read this. Don’t forget to check out my Twitter and Twitch (links on the left).
I thought about redoing the backend of the site (again), I’ve got some ideas but it’ll take some work. I ran into some weird Apache issues but I think I figured them out, conflicts between mod_dir and mod_rewrite. For some reason mod_rewrite rules override mod_dir rules (the DirectorySlash directive) but only in httpd.conf, not in .htaccess. I fixed it by disabling DirectorySlash and wiring a mod_rewrite rule that did the same thing. It’s just pounding out some PHP at this point, I think I can work though it piecemeal.
Computer upgrades —
2 of my friends were so nice as to get me computer upgrades as a present because they felt Q6600 was ‘quo2quouo’. I got an Intel Core i5 6500 CPU, ASUS B150M-C motherboard, 8gb of DDR4 2133 RAM, and an Intel 535 120GB SSD. It’s super fast and cool but I’ll still need to buy a new capture card or sound card since it’s only got one PCI slot. And despite his guarantees that I have the fastest CPU of all of us now I still have the slowest.
I’m the first guy I know to have DDR4 though, completely skipped DDR3.
New program —
I finally got around to making a version of my reverse image search program that will work for everyone. You can check it out on the projects page.
2015 in review —
Not too much changed in 2015. I’m still streaming and doing the same stuff for fun, I still don’t have a job, and this website still sucks and crashes all the time. I did make quite a few posts in 2015, which was good. I finally finished the anime I was watching, after like a year or more lol. I also played through a route of The Idolm@ster SP and streamed some of that, I should do more. I’d play some of the other games but I don’t have the console and they’re not translated. I have tons more anime I want to watch but I just never get around to it. Same with games I guess, which is why I stopped buying games on Steam for the most part.
I’ve done some programming on and off, the flight simulator I posted a video of I went ahead and redid from scratch almost. It’s almost done and should be way more extensible once it’s finished.
I started playing lots of CS:GO, a game I’ve wanted to get into for a while. Eternal drama with ranking up and down I guess. I was MG1 for the longest time but now I’m GN3. I’m not too concerned about rank though, it’s just for fun. I stream it tons too so check that out if you’re interested (nobody is).
AI War is kinda on hiatus or something. A few of us were getting kind of tired of it and I guess my friend just opted me out. The rest are doing new campaigns but nobody is streaming that.
I didn’t do anything for the new year really. Chilled at home and drank and ate some good snacks. I think at midnight I was streaming CS:GO surfing.
I guess 2015 wasn’t that good or remarkable, I dunno. I graduated from college with a BS in aerospace engineering, which I guess is an achievement even though it’s been good for nothing, I’m gonna end up having to work at mcdonalds or something lol.
I should do something cool with this site in 2016. We’ll hit 50k hits soon, and the site turns 9-ish years old (I’m not sure when exactly I started it).
Old website data —
I got a laptop IDE adapter from my friend, with the intention of going through the laptop hard drives I have to see if I could find the one from my old ‘server’ (which was a laptop). I plugged in the one I thought was it, but it was only 8GB and wasn’t the right one. I know the one from the old server must be like 40GB or so since I had at one point installed Garry’s Mod on that laptop but I don’t have any drives that large. So no clue where it went, all the data from the old Kusaba site is still missing, maybe it’ll turn up one of these days.
Uptime record —
We had a power outage last night, at least long enough to knock my server and main computer offline. This ended my uptime record on this server, which had been on since December 11th, the previous time the power went out. That’s an uptime of 227 days. It could be longer if I had a UPS, but whatever, I had some Windows updates to install anyway.
Independence Day —
So the 4th went well. A friend and I went up to the reservation and spent several hundred dollars on illegal fireworks. I ended up having our whole Skype group over and we lit off fireworks and had a LAN party as well, it was pretty fun. We actually didn’t play that many games. We were in the middle of a match of Garry’s Mod when my Dad came in and let us know that the park just down the road was on fire. So like all 6 of us sprang into action, filled some buckets and ran down there and put the fire out. Some other neighbors also showed up with some fire extinguishers. I guess the story was that some kids were in the park (it was closed) and doing things like mortars without a tube, they split once the fire started. Anyway we got the fire out before the firefighters got there and it was probably the best 4th I’ve had.
The mysterious Goldar Squad firefighting team:
I added a little thing to the twitch.tv link on the left, now when I go live it should show a little message there. My Twitch is probably more active than this site.