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Black Desert's Pay2Win cash shop
19 February 2016
Posted in MMORPGs

I'm so glad I've had my refund for Black Desert online. Where I thought the game would become Free2Play within a year instead of Pay2Win, I was wrong on all accounts as the video below shows...

One of the promises of Daum Games was that the cash shop would only include COSMETIC and CONVENIENCE items and NO PAY2WIN items. Well, the current CBT2 where the cash shop is revealed shows other wise. Okay, there are only cosmetic items and convenience items in it, but two very imporant things are shown though...

1. The cash shop is extremely expensive. I mean, seriously, $32 or €32 (again a 1:1 conversion $:€ while it should be 1:11 right now) for a full set of cosmetic costumes? That while the base game itself costs $30/€30, making the cosmetic items even more expensive than the game itself )
2. Costumes DO HAVE stats that give you an advantage over others. That means that the game DOES become Pay2Win, even with the slight advantage that a whole set gives.

With Daum Games already breaking their promise NOT to include Pay2Win into the game I can only imagine how long it'll take before players turn away from this game and it'll become Free2Play with a massive Pay2Win cash shop, like other regions where the game is Free2Play already has. I fear that with a cash shop like this Black Desert might become 'Free2Play' even before the end of the year, breaking all previous records of Subscription/Buy2Play to Free2Play games immediately...

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Thinking about Linux
15 February 2016
Posted in General

Windows has never been my operating system of choice, and actually it still isn't...

Even before everyone started using Windows 3.1, I was using Deskview/QEMM instead for my timeslicing (we had no multi-tasking back then because PCs only had 1 CPU with 1 core). At the time people started using Windows 3.xx (I still don't see how that ever got so popular because it was just a shell over DOS), I started using IBM's OS/2, which I used for a decade. People around me started using Windows 95, 98, and the only way I got in contact with them was on my work. At home I was very content with my OS/2 system that ran far more stable AND faster.

But sadly, time goes by and hardware got better. During that time, IBM had lost the battle for the leading operating system by far already (in favor of Windows 95) and abandoned OS/2 all together, but I still managed to keep using OS/2. That was until I made a PC around 2002 and the hardware was so 'revolutionar' that OS/2 couldn't even install itself anymore  It was a good thing that at that time I was already experimenting with Windows 95 for half a year (in dual-boot), and my first PC running Windows as main OS was born

During that half year that I ran both OS/2 and Windows 95, I did a lot of performance test between the two. I made a couple of simple programs that only increased a counter by 1 for a minute and displayed the result afterward (both in DOS box and native compiled for OS/2 and Windows). In all cases OS/2 was by far superior (up to 150% faster in a DOS box ). I also had a couple of games for both OS/2 and Windows (SimCity 2000 and Galactic Civilization are 2 I still remember), and in all cases, the AI responded faster under OS/2 and the display performance was better under OS/2 as well...

From 2002 till now I've ran XP, Vista (which I had pre-installed on my first and only pre-build PC and downgraded immediately to XP ) and 7. And though XP and 7 are very stable, I never really was content with Windows as operating system. I kept looking around for alternatives, and frankly the only alternative is Linux (nope, I don't count Apple OSX as a viable alternative for PCs).

Only recently I tried Windows 10 on my ASUS EEE netbook and much like Windows 8(.1), I don't like it's look and feel a bit. It looks like Mikcey$oft has lost track of what a PC actually is and starts to mix it with tablets, consoles and phones (certainly Windows 10 does that). Fuck off guys! I have a PC and I want it treated like that, and not some sort of 'multiple-choice operating system' that has all of those platforms installed and thus takes yet more overhead to keep running! If I want to use a tablet I'll get one (I don't have one BTW), if I want a console I'll power up my PlayStation 3, and if I want a phone I'll use my Android phone!
Not to mention PRIVACY. I've turned off ALL tracking in Windows 10 and still it tells me that it will send BASIC INFORMATION to Mickey$oft (which according to their EULA they are allowed to publicly publich in they feel like it). I don't want that and I also want to know what Mickey$oft calls BASIC INFORMATION, but noooo.... Mickey$oft is not telling that and thus can send ANYTHING it wants to their servers aside from what I've turned off...

It's a good thing that about half a year ago I made a new PC for my parents in-law and they gave me their old one in return. I installed Linux (Ubuntu 14.04.2) on it to use it later on and learn to use Linux. And by learning Linux I mean more than click on the graphical UI (everyone can do that...). I want to leanr how to use it's command prompt, how it's file system and directory structure works, and such things. I JUST WANT TO MASTER LINUX! And an old PC like that is the perfect way to get started on it.
And while not in a hurry to master Linux, I do want to try to have enough knowledge of it so that I can use it in dual-boot on my main PC by the end of the year. By that time I also hope that Unity3D has finally made it's engine native for Linux. Though that's not a hard demand for me to switch to Linux (I heard Unity3D runs perfectly under WINE), having it native in Linux would make things very easy for me...

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Fatigue, Raynaud and ammonia
12 February 2016
Posted in About me

Earlier this month I promised an update on the topic of fatigue, but now it seems that it'll become a bit more larger topic. I guess from looking at the topic, you'd wonder how these 3 are connected, but I think they are. Though not overly shure (and I hope I'm wrong), I will go to the rheumatologist coming Thursday. So lets get started...

First of all fatigue... It's been an ongoing topic for the last couple of years already, but now things are getting worse than before. The last two to three months the fatigue comes to a point that all of a sudden it creeps up on me and within 15 minutes I am close to falling asleep. Though not litteraly falling asleep, I do need to get some rest or loose concentration with what I'm doing fast. This mostly results in lying down on our o-so comfy couch, but at times I have to climb up the stairs and need to go to bed to rest for a longer period of time (hours that is).

Then Raynaud's phenomenon... It's not a decease, but a condition of severe chilblains, which I've had for already a long period of time (decades). Lately though it's getting worse and last month I've went to the doctor for it and he confirmed that I indeed have Raynaud's phenomenon. As said, normally it occurs as a severe condition of chilblains, but it wasn't that cold this winter (we've had no frost during the day) and in-house I have it as well. The doctor adviced me to wear gloves to keep my fingers (mainly my right hand's pinky finger), butr that's to no avail.
Reading in on Raynaud's phenomenon, I happen to have secondary variant of it, because it's not on both hands (both hands would indicate a vascular problem). And that secondary variant is what a somewhat bothers me, because it's a symptom of something else in my body going wrong...

Then the ammonia... Now that's an odd one when it comes to the human body, right..?
Not having a real sense of smell, I noticed that my body odor has changed the last couple of months. It was only recently that my wife told me that I had that slight hint of ammonia around me. I googled that (Google is not my friend, and I used Yahoo instead ) and found out that it's caused because my body is burning proteins (muscle tissue most likely) and that my liver or kidnies are not functioning properly. Not peeing blood (though my urine has become somewhat darker over the last couple of months), my guess is that it's the liver not working at 100% (damn, no more booze to drink ). But then the question remains, why muscle tissue is burned instead of fat... I still am around 105kg and have enough fat to be burned...

How do these 3 things connect..? I have my ideas, and because of that I've called the rheumatologist for an appointment (which I have coming Thursday). With the previous findings of the rheumatologist (which I forgot to post here I just found out), I happen to have artosis in both knees with the right one aching severely from time to time AND she has found a dubious ANA value. At the time it was nothing to worry about, because the rest of the bloodworks didn't point towards muscle fibre inflamations (which she tested for the Raynaud's phenomenon and pain in my right pinky finger). Now with the symptoms stacking up, she wants to take an other round of blood and physical examinations to see what's changed.
After having read the Wikipedia a bit (and you see a couple of links here already), I'm starting to think of Sjögren's syndrome, whish also was consistent with the rheumatologist's latest blood examinations. With the current problems that I'm having it might indeed start to develop some more, though I hope not...

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Black Desert refunded
03 February 2016
Posted in MMORPGs

Okay, this might come as a surprise for you, but I've requested a refund for Black Desert and actually recieved it. But (much like with Lineage II), it did take some effort to get it. Daum Games rejected my support request for it initially, pointing to their 14-day refund policy. But with Daum Games being a Dutch company and me being a Dutch citizen, there are a couple of extra regulations they need to keep in mind because now Dutch law also applies to their sale of the pre-order. One of the regulations is that they need to informe me AFTER the sale that I have 14 days to cancel the pre-order, and not doing so (which Daum indeed neglected), gives me a 12 month cencelation period

But the legal stuff aside, let me explain WHY I decided to ask a refund...

Though I think Black Desert is a kick-ass game, I feel that my time for playing MORPGs is almost over. After the whole thing with Lineage II and before that a lot of others (Echo of Soul comes to mind) and having Elder Scrolls online installed right now, I find the MMORPGs lackinga lot these days. And yeah, it's once again that I think MMORPGs feel pretty generic and lack innovation. Though Black Desert is rather innovative, a lot of the gameplay is prett mych single player, which I also covered in that lacking innovation post back in 2012.

Then there's the problem that I lack concentration to play MMORPGs (or games in general) lately, or am just too fatigued to play them at all (more on this later this month). And while I have around 65 games installed right now on my PC, I'm not really playing a lot of them, or play them very much. And that too makes me feel that my purchase for Black Desert is an actual waste of money...

But, as I've said a couple of times before... Black Desert has some awesome features that I think are very much worth to play it. Most importantly are the crafting system as well as the PvP build around the resource nodes. If you're (like me) a lover of both gathering/crafting and meaningful PvP, then Black Desert certainly is your game and worth to give a try.

Last but not least I'd like to mention that I think that Black Desert will become a Free2Play game somewhere around this time next year. Though the game is trying to keep it's servers running from the cash shop (which is no where near Pay2Win at the moment), after the initial (box)sales of the game, the cash shop might not be enough to keep the money roling in. Unlike Elder Scrolls online, Black Desert has no expansion DLCs that will keep the game going. So down the road Black Desert needs to make some money, and a more agressive cash shop or Free2Play (most likely both) are the viable options...

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Time to (re)play 2 classics
30 January 2016
Posted in Computer games

I figured to be playing Elite: Dangerous with my new Razer Hydras, but then the flu caught me, along with heavy caughing and a soar throat. That means little to no playing Elite: Dangerous because VoiceAttack would go nuts and I'd net get to flying around. Though I didn't try it yet, I fear the flu kinda changed my voice in a way that makes it harder for the PC to understand what I'm saying...

Instead I thought it was time to pick up 2 classics and play those: Planescape Torment and Mass Effect.

I thought it was time to pick up Planescape Torment again because Torment: Tides of Numenera just got into beta/early access. And while I did pledge for the game, I don't have access to the beta and won't be spending an other $20 to get into it. Instead I figured I'd get back to Monte Cook's roots with playing Planescape Torment to get to know his storytelling a bit better.
Yes, that's right, get to know it a bit better... In the pas I did play a bit of Planescape Torment, but not as much as Baldur's Gate, which I nearly compelted back in the days (until my harddrive crashed and I lost all saves ). The only problem with Planescape Torment is it's age and that it's showing it terribly. I mean full screen only mode in a 640x480 resolution isn't as pretty now as it was back then (was it even pretty back then..? ) A good thing though that we're almost 20 years further and a lot of mods have been created to boost the game. I can now effectively play it in full HD, though still 16 bit...

And then Mass Effect... An other classic that I never really got to play. This as mostly because of Dragon Age: Origins and my time spent on Lineage II. Oh yeah, there was also a mini-boss early in the game (well, for my level it's a mini-boss ) that I could not get past and because I also played the other 2 games I kinda gave up on it. This time I'm more serious about it and have beaten that mini-boss already. Only problem though is that the game keeps crashing on my current PC with the weirdest errors you can imagine, all related to D3D and graphics. Well, that problem is solved, because it appears to be that too much RAM is causing it and there's a mod to get around it.

Of the 2 games, I've spent the most time in Mass Effeect the last couple of days, but that's got more to do because I'm too lazy to insert the Planescape Torment discs and play DJ with them...

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Razer Hydra for Elite: Dangerous
25 January 2016
Posted in General

I'm not sure if I should post this in the Twitch Streaming section,in the General section or MMMORPG section. It's a bit of all, but I'm planning to use it for playing Elite: Dangerous, which I'm considering to start streaming. I know it's been a while that I streamed games, but I didn't really have anything to stream...

Anyhow... I've found myself a nice new controller only last week: the Razer Hydra MotionSense PC Gaming controller. This thing is something totally different from the regular (XBOX) controller and is the first step into VR gaming. I have read reports of players using these along with the developer editions of the Oculus Rift and they say that the experience is mind blowing. Though I won't get myself a VR headset, these controllers are a different thing...

The main reason I bought them was for Portal 2, which gives extra levels when owning these controllers AND for (I hoped) better control when playing Elite: Dangerous. Aside from those 2 games, every other game I can play with these controlllers effectively (Mass Effect is not one of them for sure ) is only a plus...
The only problem though is that for Elite: Dangerous there's no profile, and for Portal 2 the DLC is locked. Luckily, for Portal 2 I managed to contact Sixense and they gave me a DLC key for portal without problems. Elite: Dangerous is an other problem though according to users on the Sixense forums - the game uses analog joystick input and that'll make it hard (impossible actually) to bind to the Razer Hydra.

Stuborn as I am, I decided to download the Sixense MotionCreator 2* to give it a try on making my own Elite: Dangerous profile. Below you'll see my 1st try on the profile and I've already given it a test-run in the tutorial of the game to fly from one station to the next.

 photo Screenshot 2016-01-24 11.17.03_zps8zzflgnr.png

And while I managed to fly from one station to the next I did experience some odd things than needed attention. For one, the friendship drive button was placed at the wrong side of the controller - when I tried to press is I also made a motion with the controller, almost loosing my 'lock' on the destination, and I have moved it to button 3 on the controller.
An other problem is that the movement with the right controller is pretty subtle. When flying and pressing buttons on the controller, I made a lot of unwanted movements, making it look like a drunk pilot is flying But I tried to make the profile from the default keyboard/mouse settings, and I realized that the mouse deadzone had to be made a bit bigger than it's default, and indeed it has to. By now I've set the deadzone to half (was 30%) and I hope that this is good enough not to make my fly as drunk as I did

In the mean time I've made a whole new (and bigger) configuration for Elite: Dangerous, which includes almost EVERY function in it's default mouse/keyboard configuration. This includes an option for the headlook (mouse 3 by default, now a double-click on the rachet button) so you can look on the displays in your cockpit.

Of course, I won't be playing with the Razer Hydra only. In the past I've also bought VoiceAttack so I can talk to the computer and it does most functions for me, but I want to make a profile that I makes it possible to play Elite: Dangerous with only the Razer Hydra controller. Of course, when I've tested the new profile and I think it's okay, I will post it here and on the Sixense forums for everyone to download...

*) The Razer drivers only support 125 games, while the Sixense drivers support over 350 games. And unlike the Razer software, the Sixense software allows you to make custom profiles as well...

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Account blocked till the year 4753
21 January 2016
Posted in Lineage II

I've asked the Innova team for a refund for the L2Classic because of their lack of enforcing the EULA, and all I had as response from one of the GMs was "Your payment was done on 15.12.2015 at 18:16. According to the point 4.2. of Payment Policy there cannot be refund if a user makes request after 14 days of buying a subscription.".

Of course I didn't agree with it and asked PayPal for a refund, argueing that because Innova didn't enforce their EULA, that 4.2 part of their payment policy wsa null and void as well. After 3 days I didn't get any reply from Innova on it and I upgraded the the request to a claim two days ago. I figured that Innova would tellm e to shove off and point to PayPal at that 4.2 part of their policy agreement.

To my big surprise I just recieved 2 emails with the following message:

 photo Screenshot 2016-01-21 20.16.25_zpsitrwsozx.png

These emails were immediately followed by 2 emails from PayPal that €25 (each) has been refunded.

I was seriously amazed that Innova just decided to go along with the refund and lock the account as fraudulent. Well, not overly surprised, because I've been making a lot of fuzz on the forums and after the ban on the forums I've been 'harassing' Amarantha & DeepBlue (not really harassing, but I've been nagging them a lot afterward )

So with this file closed it's clear that I no longer have anything to do with Lineage II anymore. The new updates just suck, and the L2Classic is locked. And even if NCWest might give L2Classic a try, I think I'll stay away from it for the same reasons I've requested this refund: bots, rmt and other cheaters, and knowing NCWest GMs it'll go even rampage more on their servers than Innova.

It's only a good thing that in a couple of months Black Desert is released!

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Innova - Freedom of speech & banhammer
20 January 2016
Posted in Lineage II

This will most likely be my last post about L2Classic and Innova. I have totally give up on it and the refund request for my subscriptions have been pushed to PayPal and I'm waiting for it... In the mean time, a couple of things have come to my attention that (once again) shows what kind of shithole a company Innova is...

First off the freedom of speech, or rather the lack of it... As always, I've made a couple of very criticizing post on their forum (which have gained a lot of likes from other users), but these posts have either been locked now or moved into the 'Big Bot QQ' thread. One of my posts called 'Innova CAN (and SHOULD) activily ban bots' has been moved there, because the moderators think it's not meant to report bots on the forums. EXCUSE ME? I was not reporting a single bot there and only pointed out how they can (and SHOULD ) find and ban bots...

An other thread if mine with lots of user likes is called 'EU server..? Kidding right?' (which is a simple copy/paste from my blog post of January 10) has been closed as well, but the reason is a bit odd "there have been several similar threads already made covering similar topics. I'm locking this thread.". You're kidding right? To make up with closing the thread, the moderator links to a post of Amarantha with the number of bans the last 2 weeks. Uhm... that was not the point of my posts to at all!

And while at it... The banhammer that has been swung and Amantha has written about...

 photo Screenshot 2016-01-20 17.24.38_zpsvsunxdsc.png

I hope you guys at Innova feel god about you... But in 1 month time you have banned only 1200 accounts. Though the number is impressive, on the forums players voice a botting amount of 30-50% of the player base. And with over 15K pre-prepurchases that would mean 3000-7500 bots at least. And don't tell me that us legit players didn't report them all. I'm sure we've already covered them all, but if players like iPKU (one mentioned a lot for adena buying and botting) is still active, you guys just FAIL BIG TIME.

Also, I wonder why 77 characters have been banned and not the accounts of these 77 characters... Add to that that 50 'high level players' have been banned 1-10 days for obtaining adena from bots. I wonder who's bots that are... Were they BUYING adena or OWNING the bots that farm adena? Well, don't care too much, in both cases it's a BANNABLE OFFENCE according to the EULA. Or does Innova not want to loose the leaders of the big clans on the server..?

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Adena sellers are off the hook
16 January 2016
Posted in Lineage II

After yesterday's fuzz about the streaming botter (to me he's botting because of autoamted gameplay, weather he is at keyboard or not) and this player being revieled as one of the adena selelrs of the server, I had 2 responses from both Amarantha & DeepBlue:

 photo Screenshot 2016-01-16 08.23.44_zps9nqbr9sb.png photo Screenshot 2016-01-16 08.23.15_zpsevizi9qv.png

Well, that sounds hopefull... They're finally investigating an adena selelr on the server. But do they..? When looking at (part of) the stream, it clearly shows that a dwarf by the name of Pe4alka is owned by this dude and you'd expect that they'd ban that one as well already.

 photo zplayer 2016-01-16 08-13-45-86_zpsbldlwtql.jpg photo zplayer 2016-01-16 08-17-17-45_zpstofcrf80.jpg

The above 2 pictures are actually stills of the stream, with the in-game still at 4:04 where the player sets his dwarf to sell the (through botting aqcuired) key materials for 4.5M adena, and the right still shows very clearly that this player recieved money for being Not to mention, his twich stream page also clearly has a link to

With the promise of Amarantha & DeepBlue to investigate this player from the stills they've seen and the information I've provided you'd expect that this Pe4alka dwarf would be banned as well, or at least be imprisoned during the investigation. Well, it seems that both Amarantha & DeepBlue both lack intelligence to think ahead like this. When I reinstalled L2C this morning just to ake a peek, I found this dwarf at the Monster Race Track, still selling these key materials, but now only having 1.88M left in the store.

 photo l2 2016-01-16 08-12-18-00_zpswkxdvf6r.jpg

This implies that Amarantha & DeepBlue have allowed an adena seller to make a 2.7M adena profit (which translates at the current rate to around $70, which is a lot for a Russian player!), if not more. MORE..? yes, the still from the stream shows he has lots of key materials and he might have added new stuff later on.

Well, it's very clear that Innova is totally lacking the intelligence to bring down one of the bigger adena sellers on the server. More over, other parts of the stram (I have 90 minutes saved on my HDD of it) also show that the whole party he was using to bot is in one clan. While these are 'played' by other players, Innova has clearly stated that when a player are in a party with a bot, that player will be punished as well for botting. In this case the clan information shows that at least 4 players are off the hook for their ban - WHY?

Only thing left for me to do is to warn ANY POTENTIAL PLAYERS NOT TO PLAY ON THE INNOVA SERVERS. These servers are as bad as NCWest servers were during the subscription period of Lineage II. And while the CMs and GMs say that they TRY to ban bots and adena sellers, the truth is actually far from that. If you REALLY want to play a classic Lineage II server, best turn to a low-rate private one. Even while I don't support them, at least the GMs of some private Lineage II servers do take all it needs to kepe their server free from cheaters like this.

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Botting allowed as long as you're there?
15 January 2016
Posted in Lineage II

The Innova L2C forums have been buzzing this morning about a twitch streamer that's clearly botting, or at least having his gameplay automated. I immediately reported this 'player' to Amarantha and DeepBlue (who both have certain GM powers in game as well), and here's the reply I had from Amarantha:

 photo Screenshot 2016-01-15 10.43.42_zpsttpizyhs.png

As you can imagine, I was furious about this answer and I dropped this screenshot in the buzzing topic with the comment "So botting is allowed as long as you're at the keyboard", followed by a comment that I'll request a refund because Innova clearly can't keep their end of the bargain of the EULA (and thus according to EU law the contract can be canceled).

It might not come as a surprise, but dropping this screenshot got me banned on the forums till the end of March (long live my own domains and infinite forum accounts ) ad the message was deleted. Oddly enough, Amarantha did come up with some weird reply...

 photo Screenshot 2016-01-15 12.48.54_zpso50vhjqp.png

I'm not sure, but I don't think they were AFK at the momen. I suspect that the revolting player on the forum did kinda push her to take this action, and indeed, on the steam I saw them disconnect one by one.

Now the odd parts of this all...
1. This dude is as dumb as dumb can be - he kept streaming an other hour after he got his D/C with all of his toons...
2. This dude is from Russia, made a ticket and did get support, while according to Innova's own policy, those not living within the supported area (2.9 from the EULA that I posted earlier) will not get support. GMDoctor told him his character (not account ) was suspended for 7 days. Okay, his stream showed he has 6 days of sub left, but IMO he should be banned permanently. Later in that ticket he also admitted to have been banned from Grand Kain (L2C RU) and there he promised not to bot anymore - PERM BAN FOR SURE!
3. During the time he kept streaming I've seen lots of info (and recorded it - 94 minutes of a cheater at work ). Amongst the info I saw was also his WebPay account, where it became clear he's one of the adenasellers on the server. Of course, this part of the recordings I've uploaded and shared with Amarantha & DeepBlue...

But I ask you... Why on earth is botting (or in this dude's case automated gameplay - he didn't use a 3rd party program) allowed when you're still around at the keyboard. Eventhough I doubt he's been at the keyboard the whole 10 hours of his stream, IMO automated gameplay IN ANY FORM should be an INSTANT and PERMANENT BAN, regardless if you're using 3rd party software, your programmable keyboard or even have some keys pressed by weights. You are automating gameplay FFS!

Well, at least this guy got banned. Hopefully all of the characters played from his IP address and in his party will be banned as well now that the adenaselling has become clear. But none the less, I have filed the refund request anyway, becuse this whole debacle just shows how bad Innova actually is at enforcing their EULA...

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