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Old and Weird - Level Grinding

InstaTrentInstaTrent Opinion GuyRPGamer Staff
Level Grinding returns with a slightly older columnist. This month we're discussing swatting, H1Z1 cheaters, Duke Nukem, and the Vita's legacy.

Level Grinding

If I could ask you readers some questions this week, they would be:

- What are your thoughts on swatting? What should happen to swatters?

- Is it acceptable for H1Z1 cheaters to publicly apologize in order to regain access to the game?

- Does Duke Nukem have a future? Can he make a comeback?

- What do you think the Vita's legacy really is?
"To tell you the truth, I like drinking tea and eating fresh vegetables, but that doesn't fit with my super-cool attitude. I guess I have to accept this about myself."

Comments

  • flamethrowerflamethrower Member Full Members
    The Vita is not a failure in Japan like it is in the rest of the world.
    I don't think it will cost them that much to support Vita in the rest of the world, if it's given that they must support it in Japan.
    There are 13 non-Japan region Vita games planned for June release. Nope, not dead yet.
  • DarkRPGMasterDarkRPGMaster A Witness to Destruction Moderators
    Swatters should be given 10 to 20 years, no parole. Scum like that doesn't deserve to see technology for years, and should rot in prison.

    To be honest, the public shaming through the videos is really unnecessary, and does nothing but turn the cheaters into victims.

    Duke Nukem may have a future with Gearbox, but that really depends on how well the next game is made.

    The Vita's legacy is really the 3rd party games. So many amazing games to grab, quite a lot of them being from overseas, and many of them RPGs. I feel the Vita is stepping into the usual Sony shoes, where 3rd party games keep the system afloat.
    "Yes, because apparently blindly jumping headfirst into a firefight without a grasp on the situation or any combat experience is a sign of genius these days."
  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed Full Members
    edited June 2015
    What are your thoughts on swatting? What should happen to swatters?
    Swatting is attempted murder by cop (not to mention a huge waste of emergency resources that should be going to actual emergencies), and its perpetrators should go to jail. Full stop.

    Is it acceptable for H1Z1 cheaters to publicly apologize in order to regain access to the game?
    My main reaction to this bit was, "Oh, Smedley." I doubt he thought about the whole internet mob justice thing.

    Does Duke Nukem have a future? Can he make a comeback?
    I don't give a flying alien crap, to be honest.

    What do you think the Vita's legacy really is?
    A great piece of hardware sadly abandoned by Sony and by western developers' odd desire to make games for mobiles but not handhelds.
    Becky Cunningham, Happy Snappy RPGamer Alum
    Twitter: BeckyCFreelance
  • Adriaan den OudenAdriaan den Ouden Δ Hidden Forbidden Holy Ground RPGamer Staff
    Swatting is ridiculous and I don't understand how it suddenly became such a huge thing. Either way, anyone convicted of it should receive minimum jail time, a hefty fine, and an outright telecommunications ban (aside from, ironically, emergency services), for at least 5 years. Basically, the same penalties as for most forms of cybercrime.

    REALLY though, the better solution would be for Skype and other VOIP services to discontinue access to emergency services. In this day and age when everyone has a cell phone, VOIP's only real benefit as a telephone service is to avoid long distance and minutes charges, and since neither of those apply to emergency services, and in a real emergency, you're not going to have time to set up a god damn VOIP call, there's absolutely no reason for that functionality to exist. Almost all instances of swatting occur over a VOIP system; take that away, and you're going to see it happen far less often.
    Maybe I'll log out and check my e-mail or something...
  • SpartakusSpartakus One Knight Stand Full Members
    For Duke Nukem to make a comeback they'd need to do what Duke Nukem 3D did back in the day. It has to be an FPS that stands toe to toe with the best of the genre in terms of gameplay and graphics as well as nail the characteristic black humour that gave DN3D its unique flavour. What Duke Nukem Forever did was rely on the name to sell a game with subpar gameplay and outdated graphics, while the humour came across as crude and overstated.
  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    DarkRPGMaster and flamethrower nailed my thoughts on the Vita. It's still got as much life in Japan as any other system and Sony's Third Party Production department is still working here to support it. If that means I get fun third party stuff instead of another Uncharted Golden Shower, I'm OK with this.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • CidolfasCidolfas Member Full Members
    I've yet to see any game on the Vita that really grabs me. Then again, I'm coming to realize that the same is true about practically any video game console or platform, so maybe it's just me.

    I'm pretty sure swatting is already illegal in most jurisdictions and I doubt throwing people in jail for more years is going to stop idiotic 17-year-olds from doing it. Police need to start realizing that this is a thing and take more care when answering anonymous crime tips - they have to come to the realization that they have been weaponized and stop it at the source. Of course, in America (from what I've seen), police in general seem to be acting more like the military than the police, so that might be a lot more difficult than it sounds.

    Cheating is bad and I agree that whoever that guy is who asked for public apologies is going about it wrong. Go ahead and ban the account, have a real dialogue with the player about their behavior, if they seem sincere put them on probation, if they reoffend then perma-ban. It's not rocket science.
  • Adriaan den OudenAdriaan den Ouden Δ Hidden Forbidden Holy Ground RPGamer Staff
    I'm pretty sure swatting is already illegal in most jurisdictions and I doubt throwing people in jail for more years is going to stop idiotic 17-year-olds from doing it. Police need to start realizing that this is a thing and take more care when answering anonymous crime tips - they have to come to the realization that they have been weaponized and stop it at the source. Of course, in America (from what I've seen), police in general seem to be acting more like the military than the police, so that might be a lot more difficult than it sounds.

    Unfortunately that isn't really an option. It's a boy who cried wolf scenario. Maybe 19 times out of 20 its a prank call, but if it's not, and they don't show up, somebody could die. The police don't have a choice but to respond. That's why it's a crime prank call emergency services, because they can't just ignore it for public safety reasons.

    VOIP spoofing is the big problem. They need to be able to trace where these calls are actually coming from in order to mount any kind of effective countermeasure.
    Maybe I'll log out and check my e-mail or something...
  • CidolfasCidolfas Member Full Members
    The point is that they can respond, but they don't necessarily need to respond by breaking in the door with a dozen men armed with submachine guns shouting at anyone they see.

    But yeah, anonymizing phone calls is bad. Anyone who has access to a VOIP line most likely has access to a cell phone. Disabling 911 calls from VOIPs isn't a bad idea.
  • smacdsmacd Full Members
    edited April 2018
    deleted.
  • CidolfasCidolfas Member Full Members
    Yeah, I'm not so sure about that. Theoretically cops should respond to every home alarm signal with all the force you'd expect for someone whose house is currently being broken into, especially those sorts that have two-way radio. But there are so many false alarms that that simply doesn't happen. They've come to the realization that the chances of it being real are so low, and the downsides so high, that they treat every instance separately and rarely rush to the scene unless they have good reason to believe it's genuine.

    Seriously, how many cases for a given precinct have there actually been - in history - where they've legitimately gotten an anonymous phone call, broken down the door, and actually found someone with their lives in danger? If the signal-to-noise ratio is that low (and I'm not saying it is, I don't know the numbers) then they'd be doing more harm than good by always responding with full force, and they should be doing at least some kind of initial investigation - possibly by desk officers while the field officers are on the way.
  • smacdsmacd Full Members
    edited April 2018
    deleted.
  • CidolfasCidolfas Member Full Members
    Note that I said investigation *while the officers are on the way* - I don't recommend delaying the response, just considering the response that's being given.

    Honestly there's no easy fix for this. Cops are people too, and for every story one can bring up about cops who have hesitated and been injured or killed, there are others about trigger-happy psychos in uniform who shoot first and ask questions later.

    Truthfully most of what I know about how cops respond to these situations I get from drama shows. Is there a way for them to enter without shouting, for example, which would traumatize the innocent but may or may not affect the guilty? Maybe if they come in with the knowledge that it *may* or *probably is* a hoax would at least cause them to look carefully at who they're pointing guns at - I know adrenaline is high in this kind of situation but if someone sees the gun immediately lowered once the situation is assessed it may mitigate the effects.

    Meh, I feel like both of us are talking without knowing enough of the facts.
  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    Unfortunately Cid, when it comes the situations that are being called in, Bombs, Kidnappings, Etc, those are considered high profile issues by any type of security force and they are met with all seriousness. Cause it could very well happen that even the most none violent of looking of people can hide the darkest of secrets. That's why even if at first it looks like it's a hoax call they have to continue to treat it like a none hoax call through the entire proceedings till it is 100% realized to be so.

    I used to work with the Security forces on a Naval base. Heck I had to evacuate my building one night just cause there was a bomb threat in a whole nother building due to blast radius. We were outside till 0400 due to it. So even though I worked with Security Forces I was treated like any one else in the situation.
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  • smacdsmacd Full Members
    edited April 2018
    deleted.
  • flamethrowerflamethrower Member Full Members
    edited June 2015
    Did not know ride-along was a thing.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ride-along
    This is where the COPS show gets their footage, yes?
  • Phillip WillisPhillip Willis Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    - What are your thoughts on swatting? What should happen to swatters? You do the crime, ya do the time. Next!

    - Does Duke Nukem have a future? Can he make a comeback? I agree with your article here, and, like you, put Duke in the same bucket of icons that had fame...for all of 15 minutes...but died super quick. Duke's been kept on life support for way, way too long.

    - What do you think the Vita's legacy really is? Some of the guys above really put it well.
    Believe it or not, I'm a dude who plays his Vita more than his 3DS. Seriously. But, then again, I'm a lot different than the typical American who seeks a string of Uncharted, Mario and Assassin Creed releases on every platform I own. And, unfortunately, I doubt they will support a platform just for blokes like me...there's just not enough of us.

    When I finally caved and bought a Vita, I thought it would be for the first party maga games...of course, that didn't come to pass. However, I didn't have time to feel disappointed...as the Vita quickly turned into something I never expected.

    And, as a result, I would have a hard time choosing just one legacy....For me, the Vita fills not just one, but a number of gaming needs that immediately spring to mind when the platform is mentioned. For example, as someone pointed out, it's getting a bunch of Japanese releases, some of which are getting the US treatment (Check out my preview of Operation Abyss, for example) . I enjoy these titles... and you just don't see enough of them anywhere else. I was playing Demon Gaze before Operation Abyss...and I still have Class of Heroes 2G, which allows me to use my Vita like a Wii U gaming pad. it's pretty cool.

    One of the things I enjoy is the slew of indy, third party titles... great games like the Binding of Issac and Minecraft. Granted, these are on my PS4 and/or PC...but when I'm on those consoles (where I have limited time), I'm playing games larger, first party, more epic games. Having these smaller, indy titles on my handheld is bliss. Finally, it's such an awesome way to experience some of the last generation classics... Sonic racing, Disgaea 3-4, P4Golden... again, I have these on my PS3, but they just feel right on the Vita. I poured double the hours into Disgaea 3 Vita than I did on the PS3 version.

    Last, but most certainly not least, I think a number of people will remember it (and use it today) for remote play. Unlike the PSP/PS3, the Vita/PS4 actually works. Along with my Wii U... which does the same thing with the main controller, it's a function I'm learning to appreciate more

    What do you guys think?

    Viva la VITA!!!

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  • CidolfasCidolfas Member Full Members
    I apologize - you're right, I don't have nearly enough experience with the topic to make the comments I have. (I also imagine that different jurisdictions and countries will have different numbers and policies - American cops likely have it very different from Canadian ones.) Not like I'm going to influence policy either way, but I'll leave my mind as open.
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