solarbird: (widow)

This was rather delightful. Unfortunately, after this, I was target number one and was the recipient of multiple solo-ults, and we lost. But it was still delightful.

In a later game I was opposite a Widowmaker I'd been playing with before, and she was beautifully brutal and the rest of her team was keeping me from getting to her, until I saw she was in a position I couldn't reach from where I was, but which I could target while in mid-air, and headshot her, and we took the first point.

Then I did it again, and she changed to Lúcio, and then Brigitte. I tried to say hello! But she wouldn't acknowledge me - except with her mace. (⌒▽⌒)

solarbird: (Default)

Alliances, it has been said, are at their weakest on the brink of defeat, and on the brink of victory. After defeating the China Sea omnium, the gods of Oasis offered their help to Russia, to defeat their own Siberian threat, and Russia accepted that offer - but made additional secret plans of their own.

Of Gods and Monsters: The Arc of Conflict
Edda 14c: Questions of Balance

solarbird and bzarcher

Who do you love?

Who do you protect?

Who do you believe in?

Who do you trust?

With the world on the brink, the balance begins to shift.

Of Gods and Monsters: The Arc of Conflict is a continuance of The Arc of Ascension, The Arc of Creation, and The Armourer and the Living Weapon. It will be told in a series of eddas, sagas, interludes, fragments, texts, and cantos, all of which serve their individual purposes. To follow the story as it appears, please subscribe to the series.
solarbird: (widow)

So I've been getting game controllers working on PC. Yes, I need to. I can't use mice. Deal with it, I have to.

And I had everything working, wired, including audio through the controller. It was brilliant! I even have a really long USB cable so I didn't mind all that much.

Then I tried going to bluetooth to verify that audio through the controller would not work. I expected it to fail (due to developer notes on the translation software I have to use to use a PS4-style controller on PC) and it did.

And then when I went back to wired, audio didn't want to work anymore. But after a lot of fucking around, I got audio working again! Yay!

...until you fire a weapon, at which point all audio cuts out. Even non-Overwatch audio. It just goes away. I admit, this is ... moderately hilarious. But it is tremendously inconvenient.

However, if I just use the PC's front panel audio - which I fixed, as per my last post - then it works fine, and I can use the controller wirelessly (via bluetooth) or wired (via USB). (Is there a performance advantage to USB vs. Bluetooth for games? I honestly don't know.)

Having to use the front panel would be moderately annoying except for the part where I have determined that the PC audio sounds better on the PC version for something having to do with how Windows is handling the USB audio interface inside the controller, and refusing to go above 32khz audio, vs. 48khz audio on the front panel.

So I think I will settle on this. My controller can be wireless, or not, and I can use front-panel audio, and it will do. I also managed to win a duel with the winning enemy Widowmaker in Petra Deathmatch FFA, controller vs. mouse, and get a highlight (tho' not POTG by any means) so while it is still very strange, I think it is... manageable.

But if anyone knows why firing a weapon in Overwatch would shut down audio to a USB audio device (without any errors, I should note, and it's system-wide, but comes back as soon as I change the volume, which, also, has not been reset to zero) please... tell me? Because honestly, that's just... mad. Also, if there is a known performance delta between Bluetooth and USB for games, let me know that as well, because I'm going to need all the help I can get!

solarbird: (korra-no-fucking-around)

So, my digital audio workstation. The hub of any small/personal recording studio, the thing what lets you record and multitrack and all that.

I built this machine into an absolutely antique Compaq case, right? It was originally for an HP Compaq Presario SR1010NX, though nothing inside the case is original anymore. I used it because it was what I had and I had zero moneys when I started building this monster, and the studio as a whole. And the front panel USB ports and audio ports haven’t been working for a while.

Part of that has been the nature of the build. The front-panel audio hasn’t worked since I built it; the front-panel USB ports did work, until – for reasons I’ve discussed extensively in the past – I needed to disable the on-motherboard USB, and go with a higher-performance/different-chipset USB card.

I tried connecting one of the front USBs to an internal header on the card, got no result, ran a USB extension cable to the front, and didn’t bother digging further. Similarly, I’m not using the onboard audio for any actual work, so I’ve never bothered addressing that, either, except to run a 3.5mm microphone lead extension cable to the front, similar to the USB port.

And it stayed that way until last night, when I pulled the box out to install a long-cabled USB hub so I could have more than one front-facing port, and was reminded of exactly what a clusterfuck the cabling was back there. The rest of my studio’s cable management is quite tidy, really, but… behind the tower… wow, yeah, no. And when I pushed the machine back in place, I’d lost a monitor and my trackball to cable disconnects.

I’d also recently found a fanless Nvidia 1030 chipset card, which makes gaming on this machine… not an excellent experience, but a functional one. That means getting to more than one USB port started to matter – hence, the new USB hub.

And so, between all that, enough was enough. So I went at fixing the cable mess, got re-annoyed at all those extension cables thanks to 1) that’s just fugly and 2) that’s more cables, and decided I’d just do my damnedest to fix everything.

Cleaning up the cables was – well, tedious, but it let me position a sound baffle better, and that’s always nice. No more cables popping out when I slide the machine around. Problem one sorted.

After digging up more old documentation, I was finally able to get one (1) of the front-panel in-case USB ports going, off an internal header on the card. It turned out there were four(!) ways you could get this silently wrong, and I got it wrong in one of them. Now the upper built-in front port works fine, and – even better – is a true root device.

The second front-facing USB case port, I covered in electrical tape in a way that makes it effectively invisible, which is perfect. And the aforementioned new USB hub – which I plugged into the card, in back – is also up front, and looks much better than a straggly cable connected to the front of the case with endlessly-sticky velcro.

endlessly sticky velcro is just… ugh. i hate it so much.

Then, I figured out – with yet more ancient documentation pulled from websites – what the bloody hell was happening with the front audio panel.

So get this: this Compaq case, which shipped in the late 2000s, shipped with a front-facing audio header that used the AC97 header standard. That’s a standard from 1997, a.k.a. the previous century. They did that instead of using the HD Audio spec.

My motherboard, of course, uses the HD Audio spec.

So it’s utterly unsurprising that it never worked. The two are different, even thought the internal connectors are identical!

so mad. But!

There is a hax to deal with literally this, and if you dig enough, you can find it. It’s not even complicated – it’s a single registry edit in Windows 10, basically telling it to ignore the plug detection system because AC97 didn’t have that. But first, you have to figure out what the hell is going on, and that’s not so easy, because nothing in software will tell you what’s happening.

And I set it, now the front panel just works. It’s there, it’s active, and you can use it. Or, well, I can.

Very little of this matters, like, at all, for this machine’s primary uses. I don’t use the onboard audio for anything, really – though that’s changing now that I’ve got some Windows 10-based synth emulators, but even then, the onboard sound would be only for previews, and any music made will be straight to WAV files and imported over into the Linux DAW, never touching the onboard card. Because ugh.

But it’ll sure make BASHY BASHY easier in PC Overwatch, particularly with Overwatch’s weird issues talking to my microphone. I can just plug into the front panel and bypass the problem entirely.

And I think we all know that’s what really matters. (⌒▽⌒)

solarbird: (widow)

Right out the gate, I made a few impressions. IN THEIR HEADS.

(Mercy helped. ^_^ )

solarbird: (widow)

Several good shots in here, and a balance of that with some decent Widowmaker:76 play, and a nice 9:1 k:d ratio. But really, I think the highlight is when most of the way through the game Doomfist decides he has just had it with me. He's just done with my bullshit.

So he comes charging in, left side flank, ignoring everyone else on my team (as I'm on the far opposite side) as they're shooting at him, and is by god going to cut me down. It's hilarious.

Spoiler: he doesn't.

solarbird: (tracer)

Alliances, it has been said, are at their weakest on the brink of defeat, and on the brink of victory. After defeating the China Sea omnium, the gods of Oasis offered their help to Russia, to defeat their own Siberian threat, and Russia accepted that offer - but made additional secret plans of their own.

Of Gods and Monsters: The Arc of Conflict
Text e14b,1: Weekend Update for Sunday, October 1st, 2079

solarbird and bzarcher

Ah, Sunday afternoon. A cup of coffee, a bowl of cereal, a couple of eggs, some toast, jam, and the latest headlines.

Of Gods and Monsters: The Arc of Conflict is a continuance of The Arc of Ascension, The Arc of Creation, and The Armourer and the Living Weapon. It will be told in a series of eddas, sagas, interludes, fragments, texts, and cantos, all of which serve their individual purposes. To follow the story as it appears, please subscribe to the series.
solarbird: (widow)

This wasn't actually a very good game for me - I quit after we finished - but this was a very good three kills, at the very end. We went on to win.

solarbird: (widow)

We lost, but I made 'em work for it.

Also, guess who finally finished placements? This spider! I finally have an SR again! 2112, which is apparently a funny number if you're into classic rock.

solarbird: (widow)

I honestly have no idea how that second shot apparently got me two people. I guess an accidental domino shot and someone else finished off the third kill? But I'm so guessing, honestly.

solarbird: (widow)

We were down five on six for most of this game, but we did hold back their first push, and this was part of why. Like ducks, all in a row, at the amusement park.

(We did not hold back their second push. We did, again, on second point, but not as well, and then lost, despite finally getting a sixth player.)

solarbird: (widowmaker)

I joined a team that had taken the first point at Anubis, and had apparently stalled out a bit trying on the second point, and someone dropped.

After a bit of futzing around and a halfhearted push that I survived (but most of my team did not), they got grouped together and made a decent second go of it. Enemy team wasn't expecting a highly mobile Widowmaker, so I was able to pick their primary healer before this clip started, and then I just hauled my blue aggro ass in with the tanks for this POTG.

(Silvered in objective kills, too, which is always funny as basically deep backfill.)

solarbird: (widow)

This isn't a very interesting highlight, and I'm a little sad about that, because it was a very interesting game.

I'd mined their initial spawn, as always, for the little early intel about who they had coming at us, yeh? And it tripped, like always, and one of the incoming was enemy Widowmaker, who I headshot as she chained up to the hotel balcony that you can see in the preview before she even landed.

She was mad. And, as it turned out, good. And the first kill was so hilarious that it took me a couple of goes to figure that out, and the entire game came down to which of us could keep the other one of us down. When she had me down, she'd kill half our team, and they'd advance the payload. When I had her down, I did the reverse, and we backed them up.

And that was the entire game. When, in the end, I came out ahead against her, we won. Simple as that.

solarbird: (tracer)

Funny thing about this was how much of the key part of it happened before this POTG starts. They were flanking to our right, and I'd ping-ponged my neg orb through that channel, and it was racking up damage while I was over on the payload making sure they couldn't inch it home. So the orb's POV would've been a lot more interesting, really?

I had been backfill - enemy team had already made the first checkpoint - and had come in as Pharah, and we almost held them at the second, but a few of them figured out that Pharah as a fucking problem and took me down. Then, inside, well, Pharah's not the best choice, so Moira.

solarbird: (korra-excited)

AVATAR KYOSHI NOVELS INCOMING

Avatar, The Last Airbender: The Rise of Kyoshi (preorder)

the hype is real

solarbird: (Default)

[personal profile] kitewithfish posted: Back on my bullshit

Robert Jackson Bennett: Well, to be fair, it is a big pain in the ass. To maintain this world, I have to carefully curate what is now an eleven-page Word document consisting of a 2,000 year timeline, along with varying names of the months, the days, the religious texts. This would be a pain in the ass to maintain even if it corresponded with a real-world history

eleven page word document

ELEVEN page WORD DOCUMENT

elVFEFneva Pgaege WORD DOCUmenTIUHEFLIUHWEFLWEFf

reopens the 800-plus-page Of Gods and Monsters notes file and runs screaming off into the distance

solarbird: Hana "D.va" Song from Overwatch (d.va)

Alliances, it has been said, are at their weakest on the brink of defeat, and on the brink of victory. After defeating the China Sea omnium, the gods of Oasis offered their help to Russia, to defeat their own Siberian threat, and Russia accepted that offer - but made additional secret plans of their own.

Of Gods and Monsters: The Arc of Conflict
Fragment e14b,1: D.VA is live!

solarbird and bzarcher

Hana "D.va" Song needs to vent, and the love of her many, many followers never fails to make her feel better.

Of Gods and Monsters: The Arc of Conflict is a continuance of The Arc of Ascension, The Arc of Creation, and The Armourer and the Living Weapon. It will be told in a series of eddas, sagas, interludes, fragments, texts, and cantos, all of which serve their individual purposes. To follow the story as it appears, please subscribe to the series.
solarbird: (tracer)

Ana plans ahead, Sombra thinks maybe Lena has been overestimating Morrison the whole time, and Laticia Delgado knows who to talk to, particularly around here.

This chapter is worksafe. [AO3 link]


"She's saying the old dude is back," Sombra reported, listening in on Laticia's conversation with the older woman running the little store by the side of the road, near the nature preserve. "The creepy gringo who scares off the kids."

Amélie and Lena could hear everything being said over their headsets, and understood it all. But Angela appreciated the translation.

"Does he have a friend with him this time?"

"Sssh, she's asking."

More Spanish, and Sombra grinned. "Yep. He brought 'er along. We've got 'em."

"El es un problema," said the shopkeep. He's a problem.

"Nos desharemos de ellos por ti, Simona," Laticia replied. We'll get rid of him for you. "Gracias por hacérmelo saber. Lo aprecio." Thanks for filling me in. I appreciate it.

"Oye, también nos estás haciendo un favor. Gracias." Hey, you're also doing us a favour. Thank you.

"No es nada," the younger woman said, with a grin, bringing her candy to the counter. It's nothing.

"Nos vemos más tarde," Simona replied, ringing up the small purchase. Don't be a stranger.

"Could you follow the conversation?" Gabriel asked, over comms, as Latica paid for her saladitos and a couple of bottles of sangría señorial, before making her way out of the little shop, into the sun.

"Yes, Gabriel - thank you," the Widowmaker responded. "Her signal is loud and clear."

"We'll still have to pin him down, but now we know where to look." Lena chewed her lip a little. "He'll have the place boobytrapped to hell and back, won't he?"

"Hell yeah he will. He's pretty good at that, too. I used to be better, but he's still in practice."

"You'll run us through his library of tricks?"

"It's nothing you wouldn't know, but sure."

Laticia's voice broke in, now over comms as well, back in the second stolen - 'borrowed,' Reyes insisted - transport. The door closed, making a noise under her voice. "Hey, did you all get that?"

"We did," Sombra replied. "Thanks."

"I bet he's holed up in one of the old counsellor's cabins." The sound of one bottle cap popping, and a second. In the background, Reyes thanked her for the drink. "He's not gonna be in the ranger house, it's too close to a road. But I'd bet good money he's in one of the cabins."

"What?" Angela broke in, surprised. "Counsellor... cabins?"

"This is a park," Laticia laughed. "I thought I explained that. There were older kids from school who worked here in the summer, before things went to hell."

Angela could hear a rustle as the gangster settled in, buckling her seatbelt.

"How do you think I knew to ask Simona? Nosy old woman knows everything. She's trying to get it going again, wants him gone."

"...I like you, amiga," Sombra said, not keeping her grin out of her voice, looking for older maps of rather different sorts, online.

"Not sure how much I want to be liked by a Talon agent," Laticia quipped, "but I'll take the compliment."

Sombra just laughed, as she forwarded around an old camper's map of the extensive park and nature reserve, with all 14 cabins clearly marked. "Venom, I know you keep saying we have to be ahead of this guy, but... I have to tell you... he looks to me like an easy mark."

"I know," Lena agreed, nodding. "But he just keeps..."

She growled a little, frustrated, wishing she had a soda.

"...slipping out of traps. He's way too good at getting away. Don't underestimate him."

"I guess so, la rapidita, but..."

The hacker shrugged, her hands a little in the air, not seeing it, and Lena shook her head and wondered, not for the first time, if they'd been - no, if she'd been...

"...I think maybe you've been overestimating him this whole time."

"He's a legend," Lena insisted, defensively.

"Oooooooor... consider... maybe these days... he's just a myth."

-----

Ana watched, silently, as Jack napped, unsettled, writhing, on the large couch. Occasionally, wisps of grey smoke, foglike, would trail off of his body, and she shuddered when it did.

How much control does he really have? she wondered, again, and not just about his physical form.

Jack had become... erratic, over the years, it seemed. In public, or on mission, or when planning an action, the old man could pull himself back together pretty well. But on his downtime...

If I hadn't known him before, she thought, I probably wouldn't've realised how far he's gone. He's still quite the charmer, and he can put on a good show when he needs to, but...

He'd started rambling, earlier, the previous evening, a little drunk, first about how they would take apart the conspiracy at the UN, and how once they could just show everything, how they'd be hailed again as heroes, and that struck her as unrealistic enough, but then, as the night wore on, he went on about Spain, and about a girlfriend he'd had once, while in the Spanish army.

He'd never been in the Spanish army. Ana knew this. And he'd most certainly never had a girlfriend. Jack could do many things, but pretend to be straight - or even bi - wasn't one of them. When she asked about it, he looked confused, and said he had no idea what she was talking about, and she said she must've misheard, because they both knew that was impossible, and they laughed about it. On the outside, at least.

How many people have you stolen from without knowing, she wondered. And how many pieces of them are you still carrying around with you?

She pulled up the tactical plan they'd worked on, for California, glanced over it again - it was a stretch, to put it mildly, but sound enough - and then back up at Morrison.

Perhaps I should work on a second plan, as well. For afterwards.

She put the tablet down, and sunk deep into thought.

If I am going to finish this, after all... I should really finish it. He may be the lesser monster, but he is, still, a monster. And monsters must be slain, even if they are useful. To a point. For now.

A part of her wanted to grieve at how far they'd both fallen, but she did not let it. Grief, too, would have to wait for after.

-----

"I have him," Widowmaker subvocalised over comms. "Through the west window, off of a mirror. But I have no shot."

She frowned.

"I also recognise the glass. It is not original. It will not stop my bullets, but it will change their course - I should not target through it."

Lena nodded, and smiled. "Good," she replied. "I want 'im."

"Not in the daylight, ma chérie. Not unless you also want a firefight."

"Kinda do," she said, spotting another trap. "But... yeh. I'm still findin' his little surprises."

She crawled over to the tripwire, following it, carefully, found the bullet trigger, and the little pack of explosives it would ignite, when fired. She pulled the cartridge carefully from the rig, and the explosives, but left the rest set up, not obviously molested. Across, on the far side of the ravine, Gabriel and Laticia were doing much the same, up and down the hill. They'd found multiple areas with proximity alarms, but the cordon... well. Once, it had probably been comprehensive. Now, not so much, and they'd make their move before either Ana or Jack could try to fix it.

"Mexican police are gonna spend weeks in here trying t'clean all this out," she muttered, pocketing the cartridge. "Listen to me - he's got me sympathising with the bloody filth." She suppressed a snort at herself. "Another thing he's bodged up, the absolute rotter."

Widowmaker continued to watch, through the scope, off the mirror, as Morrison slept, writhing a bit, wisps of smoke floating around him. We should not assume he is done with surprises - but where is Ana? She has not left him, I do not think.

She shifted her sight, looking for reflections, and spotted a metal pitcher, and through it, reflected in it, distorted, thinned, the other target, the target they still hoped not to take, apparently still, apparently also at rest, and the sniper smiled.

"Ana confirmed," she subvocalised again, over comms. "Sombra, if you could place the beacon within range?"

"Already there," the hacker replied, a smirk clear in her voice. "I planted it as soon as you called Spooky."

So close to ending this, she thought, a little excited by the prospect of the kill, even if - most likely - she would not be the one to get to make it.

She adjusted her scope, and looked again.

I see you, she thought.

Do you see me?

solarbird: (widow)

It's funny - I didn't even finish in the top half of this Widowmaker-only headshot-only FFA deathmatch custom game, but I was still really happy with it. I had a decent k/d ratio (compare against others in the same game), and felt like I was in a really good rhythm, particularly in the second half. Plus I just quite liked several of those shots. They felt right.

Bang. Bang. Bang. ♥

solarbird: (widow)

Quite pleased with this all around, really. "No," the Widowmaker said, "I think not. I think... we are done, here."

April 2019

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