Thursday, November 12, 2015

Program Settings (help, please)

So, Halloween was on the weekend,  Not just the weekend but the actual end-end of the week (as opposed to the front end which is also known as the beginning end.)  It is because of this that Friday the 13 is in November.

None of that matters to the point.

There was a sale.  One of the things was, "For less than a dollar you can buy this game that you once saw a bad movie based on."  How bad?  Uwe Boll.  A Uwe Boll sequel.

But, anyway, I've never been all that taken with Steam but as someone who tends to attract computer problems the way black holes attract anything with mass and has enough scratched CDs and DVDs to open a Frisbee store, it's growing on me.  A lot.  Like some kind of body horror thing that grows on someone.

One of the upsides of digital delivery is no shipping cost.  With Amazon even when I buy a game for 50 cents shipping always seems to make it come out to four dollars.  So a one dollar game happens to be TWICE AS MUCH as I paid for Deus Ex when my original CD got lost, scratched, lost again, scratched some more, and so forth, but after shipping it's 75% less.

And remember, less than a dollar.  Thus BloodRayne, which has taught me that even when you can't make realistic character animation to save your life it is absolutely critical to include boob bounce* and that half-vampires save Louisiana stereotypes in their lingerie.  Expensive looking sexy-type lingerie.

I've played worse.  I think.  I'm  not going to try to bring an example to mind because such things are best left forgotten.


To get BloodRayne to play on Windows 10 I have to open the exe properties and deselect "Disable scaling on high DPI settings".  I have to do this every damned time.  I have no idea how it keeps on getting re-selected.  (I do wonder, a bit, if the game being run through Steam is causing the file to reset.  If that is it, I still have no idea how to stop it.)

Then I have to ... well that's a bit strong.  It is recommended that when I start the program I immediately alt-tab away, open the task manager, find the task under details, go to "set affinity" deselect all CPUs, and then select only "CPU 0".  Once again, every time, though in this case it makes some sense given that I'm altering the task settings, not the file settings.

Is the second part necessary?  No.  Does the second part actually make a difference?  Not sure.  It definitely seems to be a metric fuckton more stable if I do that but the sample size is low, the game is over a decade old, and . . . yeah.

So, here is where I could use help:

Is there a way to make it so I don't have to do it every time? (That is scaling stays enabled on the file, the affinity is automatically set to "CPU 0" and CPU 0 only when the thing starts running.)

Why do I ask these things?  Curiosity mostly.  I'll be done with the game before I get an answer, if I get one, and possibly even before this post goes live.


Random note (which will lead to a tangent that doubles the length of the post): BloodRayne is, from the small amount I've played so far, (fairly standard) evidence for why having female protagonists isn't nearly enough of a benchmark on its own.

The term used to be "Third Person Temptress", no idea if it still is.  Whether or not the term has changed, it was used describe a phenomenon and the results thereof that led to female protagonists being more common in games in third person.  Specifically, the female protagonist who is only female so she can be eye candy for the assumed straight-male player.

I think we can see that there has been improvement on this front by looking at things like the rebooted Tomb Raider franchise.  Is it still a problem there?  There are still vestiges of it (e.g. I'm pretty sure they had her wearing that particular shirt because it opens the possibility of looking down her shirt) but they seem to at odds with the overall production (sticking to the same example, the camera angles didn't seem to try to use said possibility and had a general lack of bullshittery about them.)

Then again, the Tomb Raider reboot was kind of working at cross purposes with itself in general.

A great example of that is that early on there's extremely creepy stuff that, based on the way it was, for lack of better terms, "shot" and "directed" comes off as extremely creepy in a very sexually creepy way.  Especially if you, like me, don't understand Russian.  If you look at the script that was written (by a different person in a different department than the people who made it into a semi-playable semi-cutscene), that sexual element isn't there.

Extremely creepy guy who has captured Lara and others is basically saying that that Lara reminds him of his sister which you might think is an advantage for Lara until it comes out that extremely creepy guy hated his sister.

So on the one hand you've got a writer coming up with a way to be creepy without being sexually creepy in the lead up to Lara's first time killing someone (extremely creepy guy whose interest in Lara leads him to be the one hunting her down after she escapes) and on the other hand you have the people who choose body language, camera angle, lighting and every fucking thing else going for sexual-creepy.

Cross purposes.

I think we see a lot of that in the game.  As another example, I could never tell whether the gory violence was attempting to make violence seem ugly and, even when necessary, horrible, or if it was just reveling in the gore for gore's own sake.


* There came a point in gaming when accurately simulating the physics of breasts wasn't a matter of puerile endeavor but instead a matter of realistically showing breast-having people.  As with most things involving biology, especially things that don't involve a skeleton (exo- or endo-), it's not the simplest thing to get right.

This doesn't matter in current discussion because at the time of BloodRayne that point hadn't been reached (not even fucking close) and the female characters would have seemed more realistic if their breasts were completely immune to all forces and simply rigid protrusions from the thorax.


  1. Found a link!
    Hope it works.

  2. I don't do Windows, but has a bunch of links, some of which still appear to be live.

  3. Thanks to you both, I'll look into all.