Of Course It Is

I heard there was a big update in Defiance. Since it had been a couple months again since I logged in at all, I decided to update the game and check it out. Well … Defiance was already a mostly broken money grubbing train wreck of a game, and this update did not improve that. I don't know why I keep expecting things to get better.

Sure, you can now reach max rank using experience only (yay, no more PvP or buggy racing), but it takes 2 million points to get 10 levels. I earned 10,000 exp points in 30 minutes. Don't bother doing the math. I did, and I'll be dead before I earn the 600-ish levels I need to max out. And … something's broken with the new system. Of course it is.

They finally gave us a marketplace so we can all easily sell gear to each other, but in addition to being really expensive to do so and requiring a cash money purchase just to be able to do so, currently it's eating people's credits and gear. Lots of credits and really rare gear. Totally broken. Of course it is.

They “improved” some weapon stats. Uh huh. Now my super rare assault carbine that I worked on for months and months is worthless. I hate it. It's accuracy gets worse when you aim down the sight and improves when shooting from the hip, and they added a lot of recoil. Also my favorite shotgun is now awful. I weep for my Hellfire Fragger. Thanks for “improving” the only guns I ever use!

Also, according to the patch notes, they fixed some problems that caused game crashing. Well, no they didn't. I only played for 30 minutes, because the game crashed just as it always does. Some people are saying that instead of simple crashes their PS3's are hard freezing. Ugh. Totally broken. Of course it is.

And I'm really angry about it all. They just keep breaking the game more, and I'd love to be playing it, because it ranks in the top five of my favorite video games of all time, but … just like I don't keep going to a restaurant that consistently burns my food or gets my order wrong even though I love their eggs benedict more than anything, I don't keep playing video games that are broken and constantly trying to put their hands in my wallet. Considering how few people I encountered during my 30 minute play session, I'm not the only one who feels that way.

I continue to stand by my prediction that by the end of the year, the servers will go dark. Sure, there will probably be a small steady stream of new players trying it out since it's free to play (sort of), but the deep wallet whales and true hardcore fans will eventually get tired of nothing ever getting fixed and more things getting broken and never having anyone to play with in this open world MMO, and they'll toddle off to other games. It's really sad. Defince was a great game, and could have continued to be a great game even though it's on the PS3 and not the newest generation consoles, but … it's just broken.

Defiance is totally broken. Of course it is.

Our Crazy Uncle

Every few years, when the political season is in full swing, there’s always sure to be a spate of breathless articles about Texas secessionists followed by even more breathless blog posts telling Texas to just get the fuck out already. Eventually, these things pop up on my radar by way of Twitter and Facebook, and after seeing them pass before my eyes some undetermined number of times, my one remaining nerve begins vibrating frantically, and I must speak or risk my head exploding.

When your crazy uncle/aunt/whatever says something outrageous at the Thanksgiving Day table, do you stand up, stomp out of the house, move to a different state, and disown your entire family? Or do you roll your eyes and sigh quietly? Well, the secessionists are Texas’ crazy uncle/aunt/whatever. We all roll our eyes, sigh quietly, and go on living our happy Texan-American lives. It’d be great if the rest of the country could learn to just roll their eyes and sigh too.

At most, according to their own reporting, the Nationalist Movement (or whatever they call themselves these days) have 200,000 members. Now maybe that seems like a large number to you, but if it does, you must live in a small village, in a tiny, county, in a minuscule state. Here in Texas, that represents .76% of the population. Does that number seem small? Well, it should. It’s a really REALLY small percentage of the population of my state. The secessionist movement is a microscopic fly in the giant bowl of soup that is Texas. They are totally irrelevant, completely unimportant, and entirely impotent (politically, I can’t speak for their sexual prowess). The only correct response when one hears a secessionist bleating their nonsense in public is to roll your eyes and sigh quietly and go on living your happy American life.

Or … you can write breathless news stories which lead to breathless blog posts which eventually make my last nerve threaten my head with explosion, but that course of action is like yelling at your crazy uncle/aunt/whatever when they say something outrageous at the Thanksgiving Day table. All it does is make your cousin cry, your dad have a panic attack, and then everyone starts drinking heavily and the day is ruined. Isn’t it just easier to roll your eyes and remember that everyone has a crazy uncle/aunt/whatever and that it really doesn’t matter if they believe Illuminati lizard people are running the government?

Furthermore, I would request of all friends, family, and strangers alike … please consider these two things before stamping the entirety of Texas with the “crazy” label:

A) The overwhelming vast majority of Texans are sane, law-abiding, America-loving, completely normal human beings living completely normal American lives.

B) Your state’s population undoubtedly contains at least .76% people with crazy political beliefs. It’s just that no one is writing breathless news stories and blog posts about your state’s crazy uncle every few years. Stop feeling so smug.

And in closing, I would like to correct a factual error I encountered in every single news story and blog post I read on this subject. There are 254 counties in Texas, not 270. This is a ridiculously easy fact to check, and I am appalled by the number of people who couldn’t be bothered to do so before pressing “publish” on all those breathless news stories and blog posts.