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  1. Note: This is not a review for the game, itself. If you want a review of the game, Luke’s review is here The game HAS changed a lot since that review was posted in March of 2016, so I cannot vouch for it being 100% accurate 14 months later. Minecraft Realms Minecraft Pocket Edition (or Windows 10 Edition - they’re effectively the same game) is a good time waster and is essentially a diet version of the Java client. It runs better than the Java client (and, without mods, it also looks better) and you can easily set custom skins in the client. Like the Java client, it also supports LAN play. However, unlike the Java client, there are no official server binaries, so officially, your other choices are Xbox Live or Realms. Xbox Live requires can require adding friends, but unlike the Xbox console, you do not need a subscription for this service, because nobody would use it if they charged money for multiplayer on the PC. While this is a great thing for the superior PC platform as well as smart device users, it’s understandably a kick in the nuts for Xbox users. You may know what Realms is, but then you may have never heard of it before. Realms is a service provided by Mojang where, for a monthly or yearly fee, they can host a game server. Although this service also uses Xbox Live, you do not need a Gold subscription. This service has also been promised for Xbox One users for some time, though I wouldn’t be surprised if they’d need to buy an Xbox Live Gold subscription to use it, because Microsoft is a corporation of dicks. What do you get? On the Java client, Realms has several nice, premium features: Your world gets regularly backed up, and you can restore backups or download them individually. You can have up to three worlds and select between the worlds. You can also select mini game worlds like spleefing or 3D Minesweeper. Creating new worlds is the same as creating a world in single player, plus there are world templates available. On Pocket Edition, however, you get none of those features. You get one default world generated, and the only way to get any other type of world (flat, old, or a custom seed) is to upload that world and replace the one world you get. From within the Realm settings, the only thing you can customize is the difficulty, the game mode, and the use of cheats. The interface is exactly the same between the Windows 10 and Pocket Edition, and if you’re signed on with the same Xbox Live account, you can access the same realms (and modify them if you own them). However, restricting PC users to Microsoft’s latest version of Windows, Windows 10, is a rather large drawback, as many people are still using Windows 7 and Windows 8. While it does allow for multiplayer between the iOS, Android, and Windows 10 versions of Minecraft, the Java client runs on several different platforms, including, but not limited to, Windows 7, 8, and 10, as well as macOS and Linux. Java users cannot join Pocket Edition Realms, and vise versa. Similar to the Java client, your render distance also is limited to 16 chunks regardless of the setting you use in your menu when on a Realms server. While 16 chunks is enough to see into the distance by a safe amount, you’ll have a far more difficult time doing things like hunting for biomes. The Java client, without Realms, has numerous mods as well as mod packs available using custom launchers like the Technic launcher. However, both the Java and the Pocket Edition version of Realms are purely vanilla. Whether or not this is something you’d want to put money in every month is up to you. How much does it cost? Minecraft Realms has two tiers of servers. These tiers have the same exact features, but have differing player limits, and they are offered in one month, three month, or six month subscriptions. The Windows 10 edition does not use subscriptions and instead is a one-time fee for either one or six months. 2 players: This will allow you to play with up to two other players. If you’re playing with a family or a couple friends, or you just want a world for yourself that you can access on all of your devices, then this is a very cheap solution that's perfect. This is $3.99 for 30 days ($0.133 per day or $0.0443 per slot per day), or this is $22.99 for 180 days ($0.1277 per day or $0.0426 per slot per day) 10 players: This will allow you to play with ten other players. This is good if you have a small community, but larger communities will find the limit to be a bit cramped, and there just isn’t any bigger option. Currently, you also get one free 30 day trial for 10 players. This is $7.99 for 30 days ($0.266 per day or $0.0242 per slot per day), or this is $46.99 for 180 days ($0.2611 per day or $0.0237 per slot per day) You don’t get a significantly better value for going 180 days over 30 days (you save only 95 cents by going with 180 days over 30 days). 10 players does have considerably better value, though. However, if you don’t need 180 days or you don’t need 10 players, the lower plans are much, much cheaper. Conclusion Minecraft Realms, although very convenient, wasn’t amazing on the Java client due to the lack of modding support. However it has a greater (forced) use on the Pocket Edition, as it’s the only official way to get a persistent world running outside of running your PC 24/7. Requiring an Xbox Live account isn’t bad, as you at least don’t have to buy an Xbox Live Gold subscription. However, Realms is invite-only, so you have to ask the owner to add the user to the Realm, first. Also, if you’re a PC user, the Windows 10 requirement, when most people are on Windows 7 or 8, may mean you’re better off just using the Java client unless you’re sure everyone has Windows 10 or they have the Pocket Edition. Unfortunately, the fact that it has even less features than the Java version of Realms while costing exactly the same sort of makes it a hard pill to swallow, but it is at least convenient. Pros: Extremely easy to set up like the desktop version Cross-platform with Windows 10 and Pocket Edition thanks to Xbox Live Can upload and download your own world from the client Cons: No mods or plugins No support for the console edition, the Java client, or versions of Windows prior to Windows 10 No official, free alternative aside from running the game 24/7 on your PC Servers are invite-only Limit of 11 players Less features than the Java version 16 chunk render distance Alternatives: The Java client - Has more features, modding support, and you don't even have to use Minecraft Realms to play online.
  2. I've never really considered having or not having children, but I suppose it's a possibility, even if it's a fairly remote one. I'd probably wait at least until at least my 30's before deciding, though. I suppose if I did procreate, I'd be the only sibling in my family doing so.
  3. If that's true, then that's funny. If it's supposed to be the department of defense, wouldn't they want something more secure? I'm sure that it's probably very expensive and very time consuming to upgrade a bajillion workstations but gee...
  4. I just gave splix.io a try. It's pretty easy to get on the leaderboard with so few players. I actually got 1st with nearly 20k points, but I wanted to share this screenshot because lol. The game does have a profanity filter on names, but being me, I bypassed it.
  5. While servers without rules are fun, I'd be careful with how far you take that. Why do you need a blank name for the server name? Isn't putting invalid, invisible characters to cheat your way to the top of the list good enough? Anyway, you can figure this out with Cheat Engine pretty quickly. Simply look for the server name (it's an 8-bit string I think?), null terminate it to 0 characters (replace the first character with value 0), then find the name that the server uses when an invalid name is being used and null terminate that to 0 characters as well. When I tried this, though, the master server automatically removed it from the list after about 20 seconds, so a blank name by itself isn't going to be effective.
  6. The aim assist and player magnetism stuff are for controllers, yes.
  7. Huh, I didn't know those were a thing. I'll add those arguments to my build script for when I release the next build then.
  8. Apparently Microsoft also just released a patch for Windows XP users if you are still running that fossil. https://www.theverge.com/2017/5/13/15635006/microsoft-windows-xp-security-patch-wannacry-ransomware-attack https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/msrc/2017/05/12/customer-guidance-for-wannacrypt-attacks/
  9. Did anyone else play this board game?
  10. It does seem factory overclocks are (ironically) pretty standard. Unless you buy a reference/FE card or you get something like an EVGA FTW DT, you're probably going to get at least a slight factory overclock if it has so much as a logo on it. In a way, this is another reason why there really isn't much of a point to pay extra for factory overclocks.
  11. I can see some people wanting extra performance without doing anything, but the value proposition is very poor, as one would be paying another $20 for maybe 1-2% more performance? You'd be better off buying the next tier graphics card. And yes, if you run a GPU out of spec, even without doing any BIOS flashing and just using MSI Afterburner or something, there's always some sort of risk, even if it's highly improbable. If you're not okay taking that risk and are fine not getting the most out of what you paid for your card, then you shouldn't overclock. Personally, I'm quite comfortable with taking the voltage and power limit all the way to the right in MSI Afterburner and seeing how fast the card goes. Yes, it runs a little warmer. It may also not last as long, though it's not going to run at that voltage and speed 24/7 - a couple hours at a time, at most.
  12. When I got my graphics card, there were two models of the MSI GTX 1070 Gaming 8G cards on sale: the Gaming and the Gaming X. The Gaming X was about $20 more but featured a slightly higher factory overclock (about 63 MHz higher to the boost and base speeds). I got the regular Gaming, and I'm happy with it. Today, I wanted to see what difference a factory overclock makes, so I benchmarked it on Yooka-Laylee with the factory OC, the Gaming X's factory overclock (simulated, but it has the same cooler and GPU-Z reports the same exact speeds as MSI's specs), as well as with my overclock and with reference speeds. The clock speeds are recorded with MSI Afterburner, because GPU Boost will boost your card higher if you have voltage and thermal headroom (the card never went above 70 C in either benchmark, so it always boosted to the max on the voltage/speed curve). Yes, there's a measurable frame rate increase, and that should be expected if the clock speed is higher, and there's no CPU bottleneck (it's being run at 4K!). When you compare the Gaming speeds versus the Gaming X speeds, there's very little difference to speak of. If you look at the minimum frame rate, the only thing that made a significant impact was when I overclocked the GPU and RAM as high as they'd go before any sort of artifacting or crashing occurs, and this didn't cost anything except less than an hour of my time. Comparing the Gaming vs Gaming X, they use the same GTX 1070 GPU and the Twin Frozr VI cooler, and I got a pretty good GPU core overclock for free anyway. All I'd have paid $20 extra for is the stock speed bump, which IMO isn't worth it. In fact, the difference between them was so small, I used the Gaming's stock voltage when simulating the Gaming X and nothing bad happened. The way I see it: there's little point in spending extra for factory overclocks, even if one wasn't going to overclock. Most of the cards out there are factory overclocked, anyway, and as long as you have decent cooling, you're going to get a good boost speed, and the difference in performance is way too small to justify spending extra. For people who do overclock, the overclocking headroom isn't any different (at least with my card), so I think the best option is to just get the cheapest card that doesn't have a crappy cooler.
  13. Chimera build 16 is out. It addresses and fixes Halo's descoping issue.
  14. It's been about a year, and I'm considering revisiting SteamOS to see if it's any good. If anyone wants to know how many games are out now on SteamOS compared to Windows and macOS (formerly OS X), here's a bar graph: Since last year, the percentage of games on Linux has dropped from 25% to a little over 23%, though there have been many new games. Although I will always consider having fewer games a "con" of SteamOS, know that this OS isn't intended to replace your desktop OS, anyway. Rather, you should compare it to what experience you'd get with an Xbox One and PS4. You'll find you get: More games (though once you get beyond 1000 games or so, it kind of stops mattering, anyway) Free multiplayer Graphics settings Better, unlocked frame rates Far more modding support for more games Support for many different controllers Stream games from your even more powerful gaming PC (if you have one) This is where SteamOS can truly shine.