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About chuft

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  1. The SMAC community seems more fragmented than ever before. Not that there's much of a community, but what do you expect for such an old game.
  2. Forum politics created this place, and forum politics destroyed it. Live by the fungus, die by the fungus....
  3. I deliberately don't found a lot of bases. It is not necessary to have a lot of bases to beat the AI, and once you start rolling up AI empires you end up with a lot of bases anyway. One blessing of single player games is no need for ICS urban sprawl, nor needing to exploit every energy credit. Since conquered bases tend to be light on buildings, I tend to use long build queues for conquered cities, paying them little attention for 8 or 9 buildings in a row. The exception is at the beginning when often I must Hurry production of drone-managing facilities. In a game where I am running away with the tech lead, I think punishment spheres and nerve stapling are good options to reduce micromanaging control of conquered cities. Often they aren't contributing much research anyway because they are small, have no research facilities, no boreholes or other high energy sources etc. I usually don't raze cities, but that is because often they serve strategic roles as airbases. Frankly a lot of conquered cities in the final world conquest campaign don't pay off before the end of the game in any meaningful sense, it's easier to just raze them sometimes to minimize micromanagement of irrelevant cities and prevent the enemy from Probing them to steal tech. This is particularly true of cities of the opposite species, which are always size 1 when you get them, which are worthless except as airbases and are vulnerable to counterattacks and Probes, or unless you are exploiting pop booming. If at a probe disadvantage, or if I manage to take an enemy base with large enemy forces nearby, for example with mind control, I think razing contested cities is often the best move, especially if the enemy can clearly either probe it, or take it back. Might as well sell a facility or two and then raze it so the damage to the enemy is permanent. If the enemy has airpower this can really push back his air umbrella. I enjoy terraforming quite a bit and manage each former action by hand, always. I never use governors, just build queues, nor do I ever automate units.
  4. Hope everything works for you. Due to the zooming in and out with the z and x keys, I find normal resolution works fine for me. I mostly play hi res just for making screenshots. Personally I'd rather have black bars than distortion - maybe because I got used to them on my HDTV, where I often have to do the same thing (watch 4:3 TV shows with black bars rather than see everyone have squashed fat heads).
  5. As I no longer am using an nividia machine, I can't look at its control panel, but I do recall that the scaling/aspect ratio thing was fairly hidden the first time I tried to look for it. It did not show up until I enabled something else that looked like it had to do with HDTVs, something like "custom timings". From a few casual searches it seems scaling has been an issue with Windows 7 machines for both nvidia and ati, with new drivers supposedly fixing the problem late last year. I would do a search for your laptop model and "scaling" to see if you can find specific advice or workarounds for making the nividia drivers work on your machine properly (or access hidden settings - I think on some machines it only appears if you drop desktop resolution to 800 x 600, at which point you can enable scaling, then re-up the resolution). I believe modern laptops are doing this for power saving purposes, i.e. only using the 3D card when required to (such as by games) and using the lower energy Intel chipset for word processing and other undemanding tasks. My friend just got a new MacBook Pro and it too has both ati and intel graphics built into it, and it switches between them on the fly as needed. Another option is to play smac in a window, using a third party free software like d3dwindower. I think I successfully played smac using this program in the past. It would just run inside a normal 1024 x 768 window
  6. Since we're on this subject I should mention that if using directdraw=0, do NOT alt-tab out of the game once a Special Project movie has played. Bad things will start happening. The movie player is a different app than smac itself and problems occur if you tab out anytime after a movie has played in the current session. Your game will eventually crash if you try to play on after tabbing out and back in after a movie has played. The answer is to always save after watching a movie (typically once you've reached the end of the production cycle), quit, then run the game again and load the save. This problem does not occur if you are not using the directdraw=0 option.
  7. Sometimes a picture (or four) is worth a thousand words. Note WPC is still resizing images so you have to right click on these and View Image (in Firefox, in another browser you're on your own) to see them at full resolution. This is what Wodong is talking about: playing at 1024 x 768 stretched to fill a widescreen monitor vertically and horizontally, with distortion from failing to maintain a 4:3 aspect ratio: This is the playing with Maintain Aspect Ratio enabled for scaling, playing at 1024 x 768, stretched vertically to fill the screen and horizontally in the 4:3 ratio to maintain the proper aspect ratio. This leaves a gap to the left and right which are filled in with black bars. This is playing with directdraw=0 on a widescreen monitor. No stretching or distortion or scaling, just playing in 1680 x 1050 resolution. Things naturally look smaller at this higher res. Here is where the scaling option and maintain aspect ratio is found in an ATI catalyst control panel. Nividia has an identical feature (my previous cards were nividia cards):
  8. The nividia (and ati) graphics scaling settings are for people playing it in a normal 4:3 aspect ratio, such as 1024 x 768. It keeps it from being stretched out to fit the whole screen ,which is normally widescreen nowadays. These settings are used for for any game, not just smac. For example Fallout, or Baldur's Gate, etc run in a 4:3 resolution. You need to use the scaling setting "maintain aspect ratio" to play them without distortion. You don't need scaling settings if you are using directdraw=0 since the game is not being scaled (played at 4:3 but blown up toll fill the screen by stretching the image sideways), it is being played at the native desktop resolution with no aspect ratio distortion.
  9. That's interesting Petek, what's wrong with 1366x768 in particular? I run it at 1680 x 1050. As I mentioned in the identical thread Wodong started on CGN, he should be able to prevent aspect ratio distortion using the "maintain aspect ratio" scaling option in his nividia graphics options.
  10. <p>I don't plan on doing much more on WPC. I'll be on <a href="" rel="external nofollow">CGN</a> if anyone wants to reach me. That is where all the bug project stuff is. I will also be on the irc channel <a href="" rel="external nofollow">#smac</a> with scient.</p>

  11. Might be a good pic for the Global Warming thread. Too bad I'm done with Off Topic and the people there.
  12. Deirdre never accused me of anything - all it said was that the Gaians were launching a sneak attack. No dialog. If I call them, all I get is that they are ignoring our transmissions. It would be serious indeed to be framed for an atrocity, since a faction won't make peace with you after being the victim of one. I tried to make my two vassals make peace before, but Deirdre just said something like "the abominable Aki must be destroyed" or something, I guess the response you get from an atrocity victim.