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Everything posted by Darbury

  1. Yup, smack dab in the burbs. We considered buying in the city, but it's pretty much impossible to get anything in a good neighborhood these days unless you're a Russian/Chinese millionaire. We, as it turns out, are not.
  2. It's where I work. It's where my wife works. It's where our families live. It's where our friends are. So New York it is!
  3. Confession: In a few short hours, I'll be buying a house. It's by far the most stressful thing I've ever done in my life. I always see these articles wondering why more Millennials aren't buying houses. Spoiler: This is why. It's awful. It's terrifying. It's like reading euphoria in Smell-o-vision™. It's also insanely expensive, especially here around NYC. Right now in my bag, I have several bank checks large enough to have their own small moons orbiting them. And you know what? Those checks aren't even for the house; they're to cover closing and legal costs. In short, why is it that drinking before noon is so frowned upon?
  4. Yup, that's the one (as opposed to Amnesia: The Dark Descent). I might just float that one up to the top of my list based on your recommendation. I'm still reading Rewrite at the moment and I'm growing desperate for something that can say something in four lines instead of 400. So ... much ... padding.
  5. Report back once you're done, okay? I have a retro soft spot for SF 1 and 2, but I've never, ever played 3. I'd love to hear that it's even better than the first two.
  6. Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth1 The Fruit of Grisaia Cursed Sight Amnesia The Way We All Go Without Within 2 Not a bad haul, all told.
  7. Feh. Let them laugh. Single is good. In a relationship is good. One isn't better than the other ... just different. Besides, there are much better things they could laugh at you for. We'd be happy to provide them with a list if they'd like.
  8. Today, I learned I am older than Rooke. Today, a small piece of me died.
  9. There is no should or shouldn't, as far as I'm concerned. Acceptable usage of loan words is determined, well, by how people end up using them. A preferred form usually arises and dominates over time, and often has no regard for rhyme or reason. We're under no obligation to follow the initial language's grammar (though we can, if we choose). One might say, "In Japanese grammar, nouns are neither singular or plural, so you shouldn't pluralize them in English." Okay. But in Japanese grammar, there are no definite or indefinite articles either (as per Funnerific's screengrab) so perhaps we should also avoid using those with loan words. We could say things like, "Are you going to anime convention?" and "I forgot to turn hibachi on." Or imagine you move into a new apartment and your parents loan you a small table. "Great!" you say. "I'm going to use this as a nightstand in my bedroom." They frown. "Honey, your father and I use this by the front hall. We put our keys and mail on it when we walk in. So that's how you should use it." You frown, then thank your lucky stars you moved out when you did. Point being, a table is still a table -- it doesn't suddenly become a chandelier -- but how you choose to use it is entirely up to you.
  10. You don't know the half of it. I was sitting there smelling delicious Thanksgiving dishes cooking for 6 hours straight, and it was driving me absolutely mad. Never post hungry. I'm just glad I didn't do anything really rash like rob a liquor store or sign up for AOL or something.
  11. The skin/outside herbs got a little extra crispy this year because we were cooking in a relative's electric oven, but the bird itself remained juicy and delicious. Butter and herbs under the skin before cooking FTW.
  12. No one's favorite font is Arial. What are you hiding?
  13. Not only are those videos entirely in Japanese, as Winterfury noted, but your second example isn't even a plural; it's the third-person singular conjugation of the verb "talk."
  14. Welcome to the Fuwa! If anything, you should boast about reading VNs at university. Most English lit departments are all about taking "low" culture and recontextualizing it as a scholarly pursuit these days. Just tell them you're studying non-linear narrative theory, mention Derrida a few times, and Bob's your uncle. You'll be the rising star of the department.
  15. Does Japanese properly pluralize English loanwords? If so, then I'll happily return the favor. If not, go pound sand.
  16. 3P = An unlockable side story with almost no plot and two extended threesome H-scenes. I won't spoil the groupings, but most people seem to like them. Harem = A wet and sticky Soutarou dogpile. I haven't played it, since it was outside the scope of our patch project, but I hear there's even less plot. The team has no plans to translate any add-ons, fandiscs, or additional scenarios at this time*, including the harem route. Sorry! *At this time = until the heat death of the universe.
  17. Here in the United States, we’ll be spending Thursday the way The Lord God intended: eating our weight in meat, potatoes, and gravy, then farting ourselves to sleep on our uncles’ living room couches. Those of you from other countries have good reason to be jealous; there’s no slumber quite as deep or blissful as the post-Thanksgiving coma. But guess what, my forlorn foreign friends? This year, you’re in luck. That’s right — I’ve decided to write another image editing post. With any luck, this’ll put you to sleep faster than the second season of The Walking Dead. I know. Those are lofty claims, but I’m ready to deliver a Thanksgiving miracle. You’re welcome. Insomniacs of the World, Good Night. So at the tail end of image editing on a yet-to-be-released otome translation, I got a care package from the TL team with an additional set of graphics that needed retouching. Most of it was straightforward stuff — modal UI elements, chapter title screens, etc. — but one folder in particular seemed to emanate waves of pure evil. You know that feeling you get when your phone rings at 7 o’clock on a Sunday morning? And you can see it’s your boss calling? And every hung-over bone in your body screams at you not to answer, but you know you have to? Yeah, kind of like that. So I opened it. Inside were 13 different full-screen maps, all very similar to the one above, showing the in-game route from one castle to another. I could already see it was going to be a relatively painful retouching job — lots of smallish text set against an intricately illustrated and heavily weathered map. Complicating matters was the fact that the same map was then repeated 12 more times with slight variations, each image representing the path traveled by the characters over the course of a particular chapter. Ouch. Image editing is all about measuring twice and cutting once. The more you mess with an image, the more room there is for errors and inconsistencies to creep in — and the more time you waste. So in this case, my first job was to see how much each map actually differed from the next. With any luck, I could create a base map template that contained 90% of the heavy retouching — those elements that were common to all maps — then paste the individual elements for all the other maps on top of that. In Photoshop, the easiest way to do this is layering one image over another, then applying the Difference blending mode. (For you programmers out there, you can think of this as running a diff command on two text files.) The result looks something like this: The black pixels represent areas where the two images are identical; the non-black pixels show where they differ. In this case, after doing this with all the images, I could see there were two main points of difference between the maps. First, the inset box on the lower right, which shows the characters’ origin, destination, and the direction of travel, along with thumbnail pictures of each location. Second, the path indicator along the road, with a highlighted road marker showing the characters’ final destination. With this info in hand, I could now start tackling the retouching itself, while setting the Photoshop file up for maximum efficiency and flexibility. The first step in building a map template was to remove the Japanese text from the image: Tedious stuff, but fairly standard. You might notice that I only removed the text from one of the orange road marker “capsules.” There were a couple reasons for that. For one, there weren’t a lot of similar patches of texture to pull from for cloning, so retouching them all would be a pain in the ass and produce uneven results. Moreover, it would be inefficient, since other than the weathering, they all look more or less identical. So in this case, I drew a selection path around the one retouched capsule, turned it into a smart object, then duped it about 20 times for all the other markers along the road: Better, but not quite there yet. It’s painfully obvious that all the capsules are identical, and they stick out like sore thumbs; they’re crisp and clean while the rest of the map looks beat up and worn. So my next step was to blend them into the map and add an element of irregularity by duplicating the original map image, floating it up to the top, then applying the Lighter Color blending mode. This mode compares the two images pixel by pixel, and whichever pixel is lighter gets displayed in the final image. Since the capsules were comparatively dark, this effectively lets me pick up the weathered areas of the map where the lighter parchment shows through and apply it only to the capsules. Much better. They look baked into the map now. As a final touch, I also added the slightest bit of canvas texture as an FX layer set to Color Burn to bring back some level of darker noise to the capsules. Not too much, though; since we have to be able to read 4-9 small English letters as opposed to a couple large kanji characters, we need to allow for some increased contrast. Done and done. I was finally in a position where I could start adding the translated text to the map. And that’s where I decided to break one of my cardinal rules: never set English type in vertical stacks. Every rule has its exception, though, and this was one right here. The lettering in older, hand-drawn maps was often a loosey-goosey affair, with cartographers squeezing in type wherever they could, however they could. Horizontal, vertical, curved — whatever it took to cram words into the space available. English vertical type would have been right at home on a document like this. Since most of the place names on this map were short, and the space available to me was largely vertical blocks, I decided to go for it. I picked a Western font I thought captured the feel of the original map lettering, then re-set all the type. With the base map template finished, I could quickly set about outputting those other 12 map variants. This basically involved creating a dozen layer group overlays for the inset box in the lower right, each one holding updated text and location images copy/pasted from the original maps, along with UI indicators as needed — the blue swirl indicating current location, and the hand-drawn arrow indicating direction of travel. Then I created another set of overlays for the red path line drawn over the map itself. Since the capsules were all smart objects, I could easily highlight individual ones as needed by selectively applying a light orange Color Overlay FX with a Soft Light blending mode. Think that bright red line and arrow on the road looks shockingly bad? Me too, especially considering how well art directed the rest of the VN is. It’s almost like the devs had an intern add it in Windows Paint at the last second or something. Oy vey. Anyway, everything else came together quickly after that. In short order, all the maps were exported and the new files were back in the hands of the team. Asleep yet? All told, the project took about 90 minutes for 13 images, with the first half an hour or so spent reviewing the maps and coming up with a plan of attack. Had I not “wasted” that time up front, I could have easily spent 2-3X longer trying to get things done in less efficient ways — if not more. So what have we learned today? When it comes to image editing, always measure twice and cut once. Plan ahead, especially on more complex projects.Always be willing to break, or at least bend, your own rules if a situation demands it.I will be made up of approximately 93% pumpkin pie by this time tomorrow.#3 is a very conservative estimate.
  18. I'm torn on this one. The review itself is well-written and thorough — nice job, Bats! — and since I haven't read Clannad, I have no opinion on the score one way or the other. (Still slogging my way through Rewrite. I'll get to Clannad eventually.) My ambivalence comes from the fact that you're not really reviewing the Sekai release as such. By your own admission in other threads, you didn't really have time to read the entirety of the new version, instead opting to skim part — After Story, I think? — and extrapolating from there. I wish that had been noted in the review, since what you're essentially doing is reviewing your memory of the FTL version of the VN, then guessing how you think the new translation and remaster might apply to it. I'm not sure if that really works, though. What once might have seemed like lame comedy or forced drama in an earlier version, for example, might be much more effective with a new translation. Let's put it another way. I'm a huge Dostoevsky fanboi. I have six different translations of The Brothers Karamazov sitting here on my shelf. I try to read at least one version a year. Yet when I first picked up TBK, I absolutely hated it. Thought it was tedious. I'd chosen a very literal translation that lost all the poetry and soul of the original, and it wasn't until I found a much better translation that I fell in love with the book (and the rest of Dostoevsky's works). In essence, those versions were two completely different books that happened to share the same story and title. There's no way I could have reviewed that second version by reading a few back chapters, saying I liked this translation better, but then concluding the book as a whole is still pretty boring. Because in the new translation, it isn't boring. It's not even the same book. Translation transforms a work into something new. To review it means to reread it — all of it. Of course, if you somehow squeezed in a full non-CTRL reading of the VN in for the review, please ignore all the above.
  19. You brought this on yourself. I want you to know that.
  20. Ohhh it makes a lot of sense now. Do you know where I can find all the possible routes? Even the neutral or bad endings? So far, I have seen none. All routes for girls.. There are only six endings — one for each of the five girls, plus the bad ending you just encountered. No neutral or other endings to speak of. The existing walkthrough should have everything except the bad end covered.
  21. Yup, that's the bad ending at the very end of the common route. Wasn't listed in the walkthrough last time I checked, but you can get it by not really focusing your choices around one girl.
  22. Patch can be found here. Be sure to apply it to the original release of the VN, not the Sweetest Summer version.
  23. Confession: I am on an all-day pub crawl. Things will undoubtedly end badly. If it comes down to it, how are y'all fixed for bail money?
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