Lies of P (Neowiz Games/Round8 Studio). The game I can’t quit, even though I’d rather be playing a From game. Why? I don’t even know, honestly. I think it’s partly because other people in the Discord are playing it. It’s also because I’m playing along with Rory in Elden Ring (to a certain extent), which means only playing a little bit at a time. Yes, I can play with my other characters, but I’m just not doing that at this time. In addition, this game is adequate enough to keep me pushing on, but it’s not great. If I was to grade the fourth chapter on its own, it would get a failing grade.
My biggest issues with this game are the following. One, there is no poise. Even when you get the enemies into the stagger state, they still attack you. Someone in the Discord mentioned there are I-frames (invincibility frames) after a dodge, but not nearly as many as in the From games. You can upgrade it, but I’m not going to waste my precious quartz on that when I can get more heals. The dodge is useless in this game. I don’t care that they said they improved it. Itt’s not worth a lickle of spit. This is not a real phrase, but I don’t care. I like the way it sounds.
You cannot expect the enemy/boss to get stunned. Ever. Which means that the groggy state is useless for someone like me who has bad reflexes. Yes, it’s a good idea in theory. Hit the boss enough to get them into the groggy state as indicated by the white border around their health bar, then do a charged RT to get them stunned, and then follow up by RB, so long as you’re in the right place. With the boss I was talking about yesterday, that’s an orange circle on the ground by his face. So if you’re whaling on his butt as I was because the specter was dealing with his front end, I had to run around and find the orange circle in time because the specter couldn’t be bothered to get the visceral.
Lies of P (Neowiz Games/Round8 Studio). Let’s talk more about it. People love it; I hate it. Who’s right? Ha! That’s just my cold opening. It’s not right–well, the first part is, but the second part is more complicated than that. Yesterday, I gave my impressions of the game past the demo, and now I want to talk in-depth about the fourth chapter boss and the beginning of the fifth chapter.
Before I get there, though. I could tell that my interest in this game was waning when I opneed a huge shortcut right before the boss–and I didn’t care. I was like, “Oh, nice”, shrugged my shoulders, and moved on. I didn’t even care because I was numb from the horrors of that area. Which, by the way, several others in the RKG Discord have agreed was unfair. So I’m not the only one who hated this area. I don’t need the validation, but it’s nice to know I’m not the only one.
When I went into the boss, I was worn down. I was deeply unhappy about the area, and I was not ready to fight a boss. I summoned NPC specter and went through the mist door. Or whatever it’s called in this game. It was this huge, bloated version of the archbishop, and I took him down pretty handily on my second try. I felt cocky right up until the point where the cutscene came up and the second phase started. Sigh. Of course there’s a second phase. I should have known because there was a creature that dropped down a a hole at the beginning of the level, and I said to myself, “That’s clearly the boss” and then promptly forgot it.
The butt of the archbishop opened up and a snaky angel slithers out. This is basically Ornstein and Smough in one. The archbishop is the Smough of the couple whereas the snaky angel was the Ornstein. And the boss fight was utter bullshit. Here’s the issue. I never learned the moves of the archbishop. He has this tongue sweep that applies decay (which, as I mentioned in the last post, and that’s always followed up by another tongue action. And he has a two hand sweep thing that I could never learn to deflect. He has other moves as well, but those are the two that people said you should try to bait out.
I could never get the deflect. Or even a good block. Because even if I managed to block the first attack, I could not get hte second and/or third. My health bar was decent, but I was still getting decimated. One of my least-favorite things about this game is that the boss gets health back if it attacks you (and the attacks land) while a section of its health bar is light red. You have this, too, but it doesn’t really matter as much because it’s so easy for you to die.
There is just too much shit in this game. As Zoe said in the video I posted yesterday, they love their systems. They really, really, really love their systems, and they want you to love them as well. Less is more sometimes, which is something they don’t understand.
I think I might be done with Lies of P (Neowiz Games/Round8 Studio). I made it through the third chapter and beat the end boss in my first try. Talking to people in the RKG Discord, this was very lucky on my part. One guy said maybe I was just that good? Nope. That was definietly not the case.
Here’s the thing. I can’t parry. I have made it through all the From games without doing it. Not the parry in the Souls games (or Elden Ring). Not the riposte/visceral in Bloodborne. Certainly not the deflect in Sekiro. People compare this game to BB, but I feel like the combat is more Sekiro-lite. The game wants you to deflect all day long, but the window is still an anathema to me. I know it’s different for each enemy type, which is fine. The issue is on the bosses.
I will be talking about the bosses and the areas is the first five chapters. I know there are at least 10, so we’re talking early-to-mid game. I gave my quick impressions in my last post about the game, and I will go more in-depth now. I mentioned in that post that I breezed through the first three chapter. The first chapter was the best, lookswise and just in terms of–well, everything. Because it was fresh and new. By the time I got to the fourth chapter, I was already weary of the game. Mob enemies that can’t always be separated–and that fall from places you can’t see.
Side note: This is something that the Niohs do all the time. Enemies you can’t see. FromSoft, for all their love of mobs, very rarely throw unseen enemies at you. When they do, it’s just one, and it’s not surrounded by a mob. Except in the second game. They had some unfair placement of enemies in that game.
I think the fact that I was able to skate through the first three chapters without parrying reliably made me get a swelled head. The first boss was hard as hell, but after that I breezed through until the chapter four boss. Before we get to that boss, though, let’s talk about the area.
It’s a chapel, which is remeniscent of Anor Londo. But the initial area is a broke-down village, much like the Forbidden Woods of Bloodborne. But, not quite. There is one type of enemy that I can’t stand–it’s the one who has a long weapon and just thrusts it into you repeatedly. There’s a chimney sweep in the second chapter who does it and villagers with pitchforks who do it as well. If they catch you with the first poke, they will skewer you and take half your health. Or push you off a ledge.
I am so bored of the enemies already, and I am not even halfway done with the game. This was something else Zoe mentioned in her review–the enemies are so uninspired. You know how I have taken care of mini-bosses? By throwing things at them. A lot of things. The throwables are so powerful–and at least they are as good for me as they are for the enemies. I will get to this more later on.
In the middle of the fourth chapter, I hit the cathedral. And the game got so. much. worse. I have mentioned that they wear their FromSoft influences on their sleeves (and it’s laughable that they said they weren’t thinking of the From games as they developed this one), and it’s out in full force for this area. You have to go up in the rafters and traverse them. That’s not bad in and of itself, but there are enemies blocking your way. That also isn’t too terrible except there are these special enemies who reach into their gut, pull out decay, and throw it at you. Decay erodes your weapon and has a meter. If it maxes out, then your weapon degrades to almost broken. If you don’t fix it within a few seconds, it’ll break and be nearly useless.
So, if you’re following along, you have to go across these rafters while one enemy is attacking you and another is throwing decay at you. Oh, and one more thing. There are windmill blades that you have to avoid as you hop from one rafter to another. And they can knock you down. Into a pit of decay. And you can’t turn your camera to see exactly where the blades end because they’re too close to the ceiling.
Do you understand why someone with no depth-perception, terrible reflexes, and no sense of space might have difficulties with this? I died to this area roughly twenty times. Ok, that’s probably a bit of an exaggeration. Well, no. I don’t think it actually is. You see, if you fall down to the decay, it’s basically an insta-death. At least with the health I had. I really thought about quitting, but I grimly pushed on. And finally got through. Only to be confronted with sigh boulders running down the corridor and into a chute. Which, by the way, is like Sen’s Fortress–the area before Anor Londo.
So in this bit alone, we have the decay pit and windmills of Earthen Peak in Dark Souls II. In that game, it was poison, but same difference. And you could use fire to burn the rot, which is the same here. We have the boulders of Sen’s Fortress in the OG game, and the rafters of Anor Londo from the same game.
Then, after much agitation…by the way, the mini-bosses are boring as fuck. They don’t add anything to the game and as Zoe said in the video I included above, it feels as if they were added just to pad out the areas. They have a lot of health and very few attacks. Doesn’t mean I can block them, though.
I have two ways of dealing with the mini-bosses. Neither are cricket, but I don’t care. One is to get them to their leash limit and then as they go back from whence they came, whack them once in the booty I have done this more times than I care to admit because I can’t be assed to fight them over and over and over again. The other is to throw everything I can throw at them. Then get in the lat one or two hits. Both are boring as fuck, basically cheating, and I have no guilt about it.
There are interesting NPCs. I will give the game that. And you have to decide if you want to help them or not, and if you want to tell them about Hotel Krat (the hub area, and the only safe place) or not. Geppetto made it quite clear that if you tell the wrong person about the Hotel, it could be the end to everyone there. He’s upstairs next to his P-Organ (yes, really) machine.
Another tihng Zoe mentioned that I really agree with is that there are just too many systems in this game. I know that From loves all their systems, too, but they don’t chuck twenty of them in the same game. In addition, I think FromSoft goes overboard with it as well. You don’t need five stats of various strength AND five different upgrade paths AND human/hollow states, AND day/night difefrences, and, and, and.
In Lies of P, you have the regular leveling up using Ergo (souls) (that you can only do at Hotel Krat). leveling up of your P-Organs (that’s just enhancing different skills using quartz), upgrading weapons (with different mats for different levels and diffreent category of weapons), boss souls make weapons/talismen–er, rings, er…ah…um…amulets. They have amulets. There are all the status effects, so there are ampules for each. You can change the handles on the weapons, and you can use cranks to up the strength, dex, or magic of said handle. That’s not the names in this game, but I can’t be assed to remember them.
I was going to talk about the fourth chapter boss and the first part of chapter five, but I’ve gone on as always. I’ll end this here and pick it back up tomorrow.
I like being a weirdo for the most part. It doesn’t bother me except when it comes to health issues. I’m allergic to everything and have a bad reaction to everything else. Yes, I know that’s not possible, but roll with me on it. I know that I’m going to have an outsized reaction to everything from allergies to bug bites to medication. I just accept that if it takes most people a few days to get over things, it’ll take me a week.
Which is fine and dandy, but the issue is that when something out-of-the-norm happens, I tend to think it’s normal for me. For example, I got a yellow jacket sting a week ago today. It swelled up and got red and stayed that way for a few days. Fine. I cleaned it out and iced it, and I assumed it’d be fine in a week or so. Everything I read said that it should be ok within a day or two. I dismissed that because I knew it wasn’t true. My Taiji teacher’s husband had severe reactions to wasp stings in which everything around it would swell up like a balloon. He took Benadryl which helped, and the swellen would slowly decrease over a week. Same with her own bites.
So, yeah, I wasn’t worried when the swelling and redness didn’t disappear in two days. It was going down, albeit slowly, and I figured it would be fine in a week or so. I will admit I scratched at it a bit, which is not a good thing. Obviously, but it was so itchy. I did my best, but I gave in to the impulse to scratch now and again.
Yesterday, I woke up and it was swollen and red again. I wasn’t feeling great, but it wasn’t anything obvious like wanting to vomit or diarrhea. Plus, my finger didn’t actually hurt. I slathered antibiotic cream on it and anti-itch lotion. I talked about it with a few people, and they were like, you could get it looked at. Neither were too concerned, and neither was I.
Today, however, I woke up and it was angry red, stiff, and swollen. I had a hard time bending it. It still didn’t hurt, but I was worried. I called my doctor’s office and talked to a nurse. She had me describe it to her. She wanted me to take a pic, but then corrected herself. She said because of how large the red section was (from above the second knuckle to an inch or so on the back of my hand), I should come in today if possible. She mentioned cellulitis, which is an infection. Which was mentioned in the research I had done, but just glancing.
I had been worried about an allergic reaction, but I knew that was immediate. I didn’t think about that it could be infected, but once she mentioned it, it was so obvious. I got an appointementt for today (with the doctor I had left, but I can’t be choosy because i need it to be seen).
Lies of P (Neowiz Games/Round8 Studio) released a few days ago, and I had mixed feelings about playing it. I played the demo and reviewed it. Here’s the most recent post I wrote about it. This was before I battled the final boss of the demo, who, was dramatically nerfed for the actual game. Someone in the RKG Discord jokingly said maybe I just got better, which, true, but not that much better. It took me over twenty tries to beat that boss in the demo with the aid of the NPC. I had to farm for more Star Fragments (the thing you use to summon the NPC). It’s funny, in the video I’m including, Zoe was complaining about having to farm for the Star Fragments–iwth which I agree. But she mentioned something about just being able to summon them in Elden Ring (or implied it) without needing any object to do it, which is true. But it’s the first From game that it has been that way. In the previous ones, you had to be human, which meant using whatever item you would use to summon humans. I do agree, though, that it’s tedious to have to grind for these items.
Anyway. The demo is the first two chapters of the game. It’s a meaty demo and it was pretty much the same in the actual game except for a few things. One, they supposedly improved the dodge–which was very sluggish in the demo. I couldn’t really tell, though, as dodging still got me smacked about more often than not. I suppose it’s a tad better and Ian said the combat felt better to him in the game than it had in the demo (he bounced of the demo early and hard).
Second difference is that they put a Stargazer (bonfire) in front of the first boss. This was odd because the run wasn’t that bad, especially if you unlock the shortcut. If you don’t, well ,then you’re probably not going to get to the boss, anyway. It’s not a big thing; it was just weird.
The first boss, the Parade Master (who I always think of as the Puppet Master), was still hard as nails. I have played through the third chapter (to the start of the fourth), and it’s still the hardest boss I’ve faced. I’ve faced six bosses with big health bars across the bottom of the screen and a name, and this one took me seven or eight real tries to beat. The one that gave me so much trouble in the demo? He took me two tries in the actual game (also with the NPC helper). The big boss of the third chapter took me one go (with the NPC helper). There is no NPC helper for the Parade Master, which is an odd choice.
In fact, that’s one of my complaints about the game in general. They make several puzzling decisions. Such as shortcuts that don’t really make things easier. In From games, there’s a sense of wonder, awe, and relief when you get a shortcut or a new bonfire. In this game, it’s often a headscratcher. “Did I need a shortcut there? Not really, but I guess I’ll take one.”
The problem for me is that I can’t map this out in my brain. I don’t know if it’s me or the game. I could do it in From games from dying so much, but I haven’t had to do it since my medical crisis. At any rate, in the second chapter, I was hopelessly lost most of the time. It got to the point where if I figured out how to get somewhere, I went that way every time, regardless of if I opened a later shortcut or not.
I usually keep my mouth shut when it comes to nature, including camping. People (usually white) wax poetic about it and it’s treated as this amazing thing. I’m sure it is for many people (because it’s a constant reframe), but it’s the exact opposite for me.
I went camping a few times as a kid with my family and church. I know at one point it was when I had contacts, so that would be when I was a teenager. I remember being miserable because, and I am not kidding, I am allergic to almost everything on earth up to and including the sun. I’m allergic to everything green and most animals. I had to get allergy shots every week when I was a kid, and my mother never explained what was happening. I did not know that what they were actually doing was injecting me with the same poison that they were trying to protect me from. Yes, I know how it’s done–now. But at the time, all it meant was that I was miserable every week. My arm would swell and itch, and I would be unhappy for the rest of the day. I had to sit in the allergy office for a half hour because–I’m not even sure why. Anyway, it never stopped me from being allergic.
When I got tested for allergens in my twenties, I got twenty to thirty pokes on my thigh. Ten minutes later, my thigh looked like a balloon. At one point, the thirty pokes joined and it was a unity of agony. In other words, hell NO I am not going camping! The last time I was outside, I got stung by a yellow jacket. This was nearly a week ago, and my finger is still red and swollen. I todes not itch any longer, but it’s still a bit tender to the touch.
Anyway. The one time camping that I remember was with the church. I was misreable because my eyes were itchy. Which is bad in and of itself, but it’s worse because I was wearing contacts. Hard contacts. So in rubbing my eyes, I was afraid they would pop out. Then, there were all the creepy crawlies. I’m not afraid of them, but I don’t like them on me. And, as I mentioned, I’m allergic to almost everything–which includes mosquitos. Ok, technically not because allergic means EpiPen. But I have a ‘sensitivity’ to them in that they swell up to the size of a mandarin orange.
One of my favorite memories about being on Twitter was when Angry Black Lady and I started riffing about camping being white people shit. Other PoC joined in, and it was honestly one of the funniest thing I’d been a part of. Closely followed by the time we started riffing on a pumpkin riot (long story) that happened, which was also white people shit. I did a parody of Next Episode, substituting in pumpkin spice latte. As to the former, several PoC pointed out that owning a home was a point of pride for many black people and that not for anything would they camp voluntarily.
I’m sure my father would say the same. He is of farmer stock and did not enjoy working on the farm. I don’t think he had a good time when we went camping. Then again, he did not have a good time doing much of anything, but that’s a whole different post.
Today over at Ask A Manager, in the first post of the day (5 questions type post, which is typically the first post), the first two questions got the most response. Thefirst question was about training a coworker who was hopeless, and the second about a pumping mother who was getting heat from HR. I knew those two questions were going to get the bulk of the comments, and I was not wrong.
However, it was the third one that had the most interesting responses (to me). The question was from someone who worked in fundraising in a room with two big whiteboards. They used the first one for work, but the second one was blank. They put up five pics of their family on that board. Their question was if that was too much. The usually saw the donors offsite. They didn’t want to be unprofessional, but they were in an office that talked freely about family. They (I think it’s a woman, but not 100% sure) were in their thirties, but perceived to be younger. They did not want the pictures to make them appear anything less than professional.
Alison’s reply was measured and thoughtful. She said it was probably fine in that office, but tif the letter writer (LW) really felt uncomfortable, they could pare back. Alison also said that it wouldn’t make the LW look young (that was another part of the concern) in the way photos of partying would. I had no disagreements with Alison’s answer; however, the comments from the commentariat were all over the place.
First thing to note is that I swear the LW mentioned putting up five photos, but I can’t find that referenec. In her answer, Alison says a dozen in too much. I was pretty sure someone in the comments–found it. Someone did mention 5 family photos. And the LW did say threeof their new baby and two of their wedding, but they also mentioned that they ‘filled’ the whiteboard and those seemed like an example so I don’t know how many.
That’s besides the point, though. It jjust seems wild to me that people in the comments were coming down so hard on the LW for the amount of pictures. One went so far as to do the ‘of course I want to hear about people’s families and of course I support people bringing their whole selves to work’–which was followed with the inevitable ‘but’.
It’s amusing to me bceasue I never put up anything personal when I worked in an office and that was considered weird. There have been letters to Alison about that as well. How people find it troubling when the OP didn’t have anything up on their walls. One said they got so many comments, they just brought in a few random things and the comments stopped.
I am invisible in several ways. First, Asian as a race is usually ignored in America. When racism is talked about, it’s always about black people. I get it. Racism against black people is the worst, literally, in America. And Latinos will get a mention now and again. Oh, and when the pandemic hit, there was a hot second of concern for Asians who were getting bashed (because of the “China” virus), but that was it.
And I get that what Asians go through in general is not as bad as what blacks go through. But. At the same time. It was difficult to grow up in the seventies in Minnesota as an Asian girl. My food was laughed at because it was decades before Chinese (mine was Taiwanese, but similar) became fashionable. I was awkward, fat, and miserable. I had no friends, and I was the proverbial fish out of water.
In addition, we have been considered the model minority beacuse waves of East Asians came to America for college/grad school. I have been told in all earnesty that Asian people are so smart. Back in my twenties, my cheeky reply was that all the unintelligent people were in Asia. Not a nice thing to say, but not untrue, either. Not meaning that Asian people are less smart than Westerners, but that with nearly 2 billion Eastern Asians, there are bound to be some who are not as smart as Westerners.
In the sixties and seventies, many East Asian people came to America to study. Many stayed here for opportunities and did not return to their home countries. This is called a brain drain, and it was a big problem back then. In addition, people who come to Ameria from Asia to study are very driven and the cream of the crop (school-wise). In my parents’ case, my father was extremely driven and got a Fulbright Scholarship. In my mother’s case, she’s very smart and worked hard to get here as well. They both had to be at the top of their game, schoolwise to even be considered to be allowed to come to America to study.
In Taiwan, you have to declare your major for college as you enter high school. Plus they went to school for something like ten hours a day. It was brutal. As my mother expalined it to me, school was hard until grad school where it’s then a party. She found it bizarre here that school was pretty much a breeze until college.
Other categories in which I fit that have no place in this world: religion, gender, suxual, generation, marital/parental status. In order, i’m areligious, agender, bi, X, single and childfree. Concerning religion, it’s often Christian, Judaism, and Islam that are the big three. Atheists are known, but reviled. Gender, it’s male, female, and nonbinary (with trans people being acknowledged, finally!). Generation-wise, it’s Boomers and Millennials and nothiing between. It’s fascinating, really, how both Gen X and Gen Z have been erased from the conversation. Boomer is shorthand for old people and Millennial is shorthand for kids today. The oldest millennial is over 40! I mean. Come on. They are married and have kids. But, yes, tell me about kids these days, those millennials.
I have talked before about how I reach the end of things and then decide that I need to move on. It’s not a good or a bad thing; it’s just the way I am. Meaning that I get bored with things if they don’t change.
I had a Taiji class today (Zoom), and we were going over a movement that is in the first section of the Solo (Long) Form. In other words, the very beginning of the my studies. It has been refined and tweaked, but I’ve been doing it for fifteen years. Back before the pandemic, I was teaching myself the left side of the Solo Form, and made it to roughly two-thirds into the third section. In other words, one-third from the end. My teacher’s teacher was tinkering with the form, and he was changing so much at that point that I decided to put it on hold until he finished.
Theoretically, I understood that it wasa living form. Theoretically, it was exciuting that he kept changing it. My teacher said that when he was taking lessons from the masters, they were changing t on the regular and just expected people to keep up. Which, fine, but that’s not the way I work. Especially when I was trying to teach myself the left side.
Then, I became focused on the weapons and then, the pandemic hit. It’s only in the last six months or so that my teacher has been teaching us the new Solo Form. It’s mostly the same, and my brain is not remembering the differences. I’ll need my teacher to go over them with me in my private lessons, but I’m happy that A) It’s been refined and B) It’s settled, more or less.
I’ve been in a rut for the last few months, and I’ve decided to shake things up. Now, I’m focusing on refining the forms I know, but also on working on my upper body strength. I need to keep things spicy enough that I don’t get bored, but comfortabl e enough for me not to feel overwhelmed.
I have a weird way of doing that. I stick with what I know for a bit too long, and then I rush to do ten new things. I do wonder if I have ADHD or at least the traits. I tend to hyper-focus on something until i get bored, and then i move on. This is with groups, hobbies, and, sadly to say, people. Not that i need a person to be constantly evolving because I sure am not, but I do need a person to be at least open to the idea that there is more out there than they know. In other words, that they are willing to learn something.
My brother has an ex-friend who is a dedicated Republican. They became friends back when he was a Republican (in name) and worked at the same place I think. She was really rightwing and said to him straight up that the truth didn’t matter. If the Republicans said it, then she believed it. He did not know what to do with it, and he wanted to talk about it from time to time. He wanted to know why she thought that way because he could not fathom it.
One thing I’ve learned from reading advice columns. If you introduce animals to the question, all bets are off. Today at Ask A Manager, there was a question involving two large dogs, a party, and reasonable (or not) requests. And academia. It garnered over a thousand responses (granted, it was one of four questions, but I’d estimate that at least three-quarters of the comments were about this question), and the comments were all over the map.
It fascinated me because it’s a question i didn’t have much personal interest in. I wasn’t invested in it, so it was the perfect question to take the longview on. I could see what got people upset, what pushed other people’s buttons, and what made this such a thorny topic. And, boy, did it get ugly.
First of all, there is a way that the letter writer (LW) wrote the question. They stated that they hosted an open house once a month with their partner in order to help their friends and colleagues (acadameia) to socialize. They’ve been doing it for a year. It’s open in the truest sense in that people were encouraged to bring friends, kids, and dogs.
That was the one stipulation the LW made. They had two large, sweet, well-trained dogs who they were not going to shut up in a room. They were very clear about that to everyone who came to the parties, and it was not a problem.
Cue the actual issue. They have a colleague, Paul, whom they invited to dinner a while ago. They made sure Paul new about the dogs, and he indicated he was fine with that. When he got there, he wasn’t fine with that and ‘was rude about them when they approached to sniff him and greet him’.
LW decided to keep their distance from Paul outside of work. Fastfoward to now. Paul, recently divorced, asked if he could attend one of the parties. LW said it was fine but that the dogs wouldbe allowed to roam, and there would probably be other dogs, too. Paul said that was fine but then later texted to ask if the dogs could be put in a room and other dogs asked not to attend.
The comment section exploded. The first comment about this question (which I saw fairly soon after the new post went up scolded the LW for not being nice. And then it was an all-out bawl. The comments ranged from people saying the LW was completely in the right and that Paul was being a total dick to those who said poor Paul was being attacked (not physically) and LW was a complete monster.