Max Payne 3 is a max pain to play

So, 9 years after its release and I finally managed to fire this thing up and finish the trilogy once and for all. Just to be monumentally disappointed by the game. It’s so bad I don’t even know where to begin…

Controls are just straight out moronic with unnecessarily over-complicated movement controls. Who the fuck thought having all these separate actions for crouching, rolling, vaulting while simultaneously merging Jump action to a vault for no god damn reason, stupid cover mechanics with yet another key, idiotic weapons handling with forced two handed weapon feeling like an afterthought, totally meaningless dual gun selection to forced and idiotic “last kill save” where killing someone in special Bullet Time automatically uses Painkillers for some reason. And then just decides to lay around on the ground. Like, come on!?!??!?!?

To further make matters worse they give you some sort of achievements by collecting clues and golden gun pieces just for game to constantly push you around through cut scenes, so you don’t even have time or chance to explore. The biggest nonsense that happened to me so far was that bar flashback scene where I went on exploring, notice a golden piece up above in room with pool table and suddenly my “buddy” gets shot in the face to death and game ends. Next reload I decide to kill the gringos so they don’t shoot him in the face again and return back for the piece. Nope, the doors behind me get locked for no reason preventing me to go back and pick up that golden gun piece I wanted before. Fuck me.

Entire combat is just so lame and forced it feels worse than Virtua Cop from 24 years ago. Every step through a door is a fucking cut scene and after every such fucking cut scene is a gun fight. And in every such gun fight, when it begins, you’re not holding the gun you were actually holding before that. When in cover, the microscopic dot crosshair is not visible so every time you lift yourself from the cover it takes half an hour before stupid crosshair appears so you’re waving around like an idiot trying to even figure out where you’re pointing at and aim at bad guys like a drunk cop on drugs with pencil stuck in your eye. What absolute moron designed this game!? It’s fucking terrible.

Now I need to drag myself through this trainwreck just to finish it and be done with it forever. It really shows it wasn’t done by Remedy Entertainment and it’s a disgrace for the franchise. What I don’t understand is how Rockstar Games managed to fuck it up so badly…

Gigabyte G27Q custom crosshairs pack

Some time ago I’ve bought myself Gigabyte G27Q monitor and it has a neat feature to create custom virtual crosshairs that act like an overlay. Main benefit is that you don’t need to create a rendered overlay or inject anything into games, making it friendly for online games as it’s entirely undetectable to anticheat systems. And can also be useful for single player games because it’s just so simple to enable and will work with any game. Sometimes games just have rubbish in-game crosshairs or you like to complement existing ones with custom one. Usually Diagonal one works well since it can fill the gaps of built-in crosshairs and can function as a guideline for example when character in game is sprinting and games usually disable crosshair. This way you always know exactly where you’ll be aiming when you stop sprinting for example. Call it cheating if you want, but it’s useful. We used to paint dots on monitors back in the day when none of this was available so why the heck not 😛

Since Gigabyte OSD Sidekick allows exporting of crosshairs, I thought, why not release them if anyone else wants them. So, here it is 🙂

DOWNLOAD

You need to connect your Gigabyte G27Q monitor with USB cable and install Gigabyte OSD Sidekick. Then you can easily import these through OSD Sisdekick app. Or even create your own. Might even work with other Gigabyte monitors that have custom crosshairs support, but that is untested. If it doesn’t work, you can use the screenshots of crosshairs above to recreate them yourself and modify them to your liking.

SoundPEATS TrueAir 2 review

I’ve been using Apple AirPods 2 for quite a while and I love them. Really low latency, very good audio quality, good stereo separation and really good fit. I’m no fan of silicone tipped earbuds and as such I had VERY limited selection of earbuds to go with.

Some time ago someone recommended me SoundPEATS TrueAir 2. I checked for them recently and spotted a great deal on Amazon. I got them for 24€ (they seem to go for 35€). And I said to myself, lets try them out. I was testing them entire day yesterday and here are my findings…

I’ll compare them to 5x more expensive AirPods 2 since I have a lot of hours with those…

PROS:

  • decent sound quality
  • decent bass
  • 5h play time with extra 20h charge from case
  • compact case the same size as AirPods 2
  • touch controls are reliable and well defined
  • Game Mode for extra lower latency
  • earbuds and case cover snap into place with satisfying “click” using magnets
  • USB-C charge port
  • price

CONS:

  • case feels a bit plasticky and “too light” for the size

The case feels a bit light and feels like they could put bigger battery in it for the size, but since it has same charge capacity as AirPods 2 at roughly the same case size, I don’t really have an issue with it, it’s just a perception or feeling when you’re holding the case. And that’s really the only issue I have with them if I entirely ignore how much they cost.

Case size is basically the same as AirPods 2 and offers same charge capacity which is nice. Audio quality is decent, so is bass. Sound is very subjective thing to talk about, so I’m not gonna pretend with some magical audiophile words how virgin sound it has. But it’s good and very usable for anything from music, movies and even for gaming. Latency seems to be tiny bit higher compared to AirPods 2 out of the box, but you can enable Game Mode by triple tapping left earbud which does lower latency quite significantly, possibly at slight expense of audio quality. But I generally wasn’t annoyed by it while playing Borderlands 3 even when not in Game Mode. With AirPods 2 I never even got a perception of any latency.

What I like the most is the way how earbuds snap into place when placing them back in the case. I thought horizontal orientation will cause issues when placing them in, but it’s very precise and doesn’t require any special alignment. Case cover feels a bit cheap when you open it compared to AirPods 2 case, but it snaps back together with a rather satisfying “click” so it’s fine. LED inside the case displays state of case battery using 3 colors on a single LED. Green means it’s almost full, orange means it’s around middle of battery charge and red means it’s basically empty. It can be charged using USB-C for which you get a short USB-A to USB-C cable, but no charger. The only charging indicator on the outside is “charging” and “not charging/full” single red status LED. But I guess it’s not that important since you probably want to fully charge it anyway, it’s the charge left that’s more important and it has that inside the case.

For the price, they are amazing. If you are looking for affordable, but still decent wireless earbuds and you too can’t stand silicone earbuds shoved inside your ear, these are really good option. Like, really good option.

Firefox Tweaker 2.9 with new Proton Interface support released!

I’ve just released new version of Firefox Tweaker 2.9 that can enable preview of Mozilla’s new Proton Interface. Proton is Mozilla’s redesigned interface for Firefox which is planned to be released to all users with Firefox 89. You can try it out now in Firefox 88. While some things are a bit weird, some are surprisingly better. Like the god awful oversized twitching URL bar which feels much better under Proton. Give it a try if you want.

The tweak controls several parameters at once. Parameters are listed under Help button of Proton interface and you can individually adjust them under about:config if you desire to do so. I’ve decided to pack them all under single checkbox for convenience purposes.

Micro page for more details:

https://rejzor.wordpress.com/firefox-tweaker/

 

Gigabyte G27Q monitor bricking itself after F05 update. But not really.

As per my usual Gigabyte tradition, things just have to go wrong with their stuff… Just the other day I was updating its firmware on my Gigabyte G27Q monitor to version F5 which brings some refresh rate fixes. So, I installed OSD Sidekick, downloaded firmware and applied it.

All went well until display went blank during update and monitor began doing what looked like a bricked loop state. Its power indicator was blinking in a weird way with two fast blinks and a longer pause, making weird high pitch noise every time it blinked. Since documentation doesn’t exist on Gigabytes site apart from entirely useless “manual”, I searched online and found someone else had exact same issue on Reddit. Apparently they fixed it by having it unplugged for a day. So I went with that fix. Left it unplugged from power as well as PC (I was using DisplayPort) for the night. In the morning, all excited to finally get to the desktop I plug it in aaaaaand the same thing. Blinking LED, dead monitor. Dafaq?!

Then as I was flipping it around thinking what to try next I realized I only unplugged power, its USB and DisplayPort cables. The HDMI going to PlayStation was still plugged in and I remembered the news about HDMI dongle fooling GeForce cards into allowing mining and I thought, what if presence of HDMI cable alone (even though PlayStation was turned off) is making it fail to operate. So I entirely unplugged it from all power and data sources. Waited a minute, plugged only power cable back and behold, monitor woke up normally. I stuck back in the DisplayPort cable and bam, Windows desktop appeared with OSD Sidekick app still there saying “Finished” in a popup.

Apparently, if you have HDMI plugged in, G27Q monitor will get stuck in a “boot” loop after firmware update. And since the F05 in particular has refresh rate fixes for PlayStation 5, that happening is a very likely scenario since it connects via HDMI.

So, apparently all you have to do to “unbrick” it is to disconnect ALL cables then only plug it into power and turn it on. Once it completes the first “boot”, it will work fine even with all the cables plugged in. What an absolutely bizarre issue that will surely freak out so many users who ventured down this firmware updating route. I just hope they’ll find this blog post and resolve the issue quickly. I can’t tell you have freaked out I was thinking shiny new 300+ € monitor just got bricked and I’ll have to deal with lengthy RMA process. Thankfully I didn’t have to after figuring out the issue myself. I also hope Gigabyte will write down a warning for F05 update that if this happens you need to disconnect it entirely, do a power only “boot” and then connect things back.

GSM Arena’s comment section is a cancerous clusterfuck

Boy I’ve never seen such cancerous clusterfuck of a comment section as on GSM Arena. I like their page because it’s a massive resource for smartphones and I like talking about phones and tech in them, but my god the comment section there is a fucking retardation consisting of brain dead morons who are praising their stupid Android phone brands like the biggest fucking die hard fanboys and relentlessly shit on anything Apple frigging non stop, to a point you can’t even have any kind of conversation. You think Apple fanboys are bad? Sure. But wait till you see all those same 5 motherfuckers on GSM Arena who praise everything Android, like worst fucking cultists you can imagine. And if you at any point disagree with these degenerate retards by actually replying to them calling them on their bullshit, they’ll relentlessly attack and harass you in totally unrelated topics with their brain dead replies and comments just repeating same shit over and over and constantly dumping it on your notifications by replying to you by actively chasing your comments everywhere.

And while some would say “well, just ignore them”.  Frankly, that doesn’t really help as in the eyes of observers make those idiots look like they are the all knowing (even though they are stupid as fuck) and you just always end up looking “speechless” if you don’t reply. Sorry, but I fucking hate that.

Partial problem to that is GSM Arena’s limited control over comments. If one could just block those idiots from entirely replying to your comments and hiding their garbage comments entirely and problem would be solved, but they just don’t offer controls for that. The other problem is their allowing of “Anonymous” accounts. These fuckers just use these to harass registered users coz apparently mods can’t even do anything about them. Or something. Can’t explain any other way how exact same “Anons” keep harassing people without getting kicked off the page for good. Third problem is how their moderators “fix” things. It seems they like to punish everyone but those same retards who harass everyone on their page. Why, I have no clue.

Seriously people running GSM Arena, you have a great page, but your way of running “community” is absolutely broken and having those retards chasing and harassing people around makes it a fucking chore to use or just stay around.

New domain for easy access to my rants

After having issues with my free .tk domain, I’ve decided to dump it and go with full on proper domain. Not through WordPress coz I’m a cheap bastard, so it’ll still be just a simple domain redirect to WordPress blog, but it’ll be easy to remember. Now I just have to change it in all my apps which will be a massive pain in the ass. But oh well.

You can reach my blog via rejzor.com or www.rejzor.com. Easy enough to remember? 🙂

This car installments payment bullshit should be banned by law

This is going to be a more localized rant, but I’m guessing this bullshit follows you all in your countries as well. What I’m talking is how we’re bombarded with endless ads for cars with all these insanely low advertised installments payment options that even a student could easily pay off based on what they are advertising. I mean, here’s an example I quickly found…

I mean, look at this amazing deal. Renault Clio E-Tech for 155€ a month! And Renault Zoe for only 179€ a month! No deposit required! Wow, what a bargain! I’m gonna take both!

And while I know Renault has some bullshit battery leasing, I’ve seen the same for VW ID.3 when it was launched and was advertised for like 280€ a month or something like that. VW doesn’t have battery leasing. Anyway, when you do the math, you quickly notice these advertised numbers are just pure Fumier de cheval (horse shit).

Largest number of installments I’ve ever seen was 84 which makes it 7 years. That Zoe for 179€ a month for 7 years adds up to 15.036€. Cheapest, most basic advertised Zoe is 32.840€. Since there is no deposit required as they say, where does the remaining difference come from?

And same for that VW ID.3 for 280€ a month, again without any deposit. 280€ times 84 is 23.520€. Cheapest, most basic ID.3 is advertised at 38.800€. If there is no initial deposit done, where does the remaining difference come from?

Oh right, it comes in the end when they ask you to pay the remaining 20k. Dafuck is this shit?

This is just straight up false advertising and I might not be versed in trade laws enough, but should we really be for such straight up bullshit advertisement to be banned? Don’t fucking advertise it as 179€ a month when it clearly isn’t anywhere close to that and is actually more like 462€ a month. Totally an “insignificant” difference, right? And that’s just raw cost without any extra fees when buying a car with lease. Or even a regular installments payment. In fact, even when deposit is required, claiming these tiny installments and then hiding deposit under that fucking asterisk should be banned. It’s just so incredibly stupid and serves no fucking purpose.

Imagine if I was advertising you could buy a car for a cost of a coffee a month! And then demand a 40.000€ deposit under a microscopic asterisk. I mean, based on how things are advertised, you apparently totally could. Except it’s total BS and misleading on so many levels it’s not even funny. Just tell it’s 462€ a month for fucks sake. I just don’t get it who are they fooling. Or do they want to turn around people who come to buy one and clearly can’t pay that or something? What’s the purpose of that? And I damn well know there are people who see these numbers and think they actually mean a thing they say.

Now I’m gonna sell my RTX 3080 to someone for amazing 10€/month*

*Payment in 84 installments with 2500€ deposit and 500% monthly fee.

Common design flaws in robot vacuum cleaners

I’ve been using 2 robot vacuum cleaners (Midea MR06 and Rowenta Series 60 Anti-Allergy) for a while now, one particularly in the room with computer and bed where dust just never seems to be really gone. I’ve also got quite some experience with entire range of iRobot models and watched quite few tests online to really understand robots quite well. And here are some common design flaws that I want to point out so maybe vendors will fix or improve them. Or just for users to know what to look for when buying one. I’m mostly going to point out the above models, but I’ve also seen a lot about Dyson 360 as well as bunch of “no name” Chinese robots that have the following problems… I hope robot vendors will read this as well as users when looking for new robot. Just decide if mentioned design will be a problem for you or not and then narrow the choices. The list will probably get really long, but I’ll make categories so you can easily jump to things that may interest you more.

Ok, lets go. 🙂

Chassis design (Height)

A lot of robots are pretty standard size, give or take few millimeters. There are 2 models I’m aware of that really stand out. One is Rowenta Explorer Series 60 (RR74xx) models that are super slim at insane 6cm of height only. And at the other extreme, Dyson 360 Heurist at 12cm is one of the tallest robots out there. While being lowest may be beneficial in some cases where you want it to go under, it’s sometimes also a curse. My Rowenta Series 60 can go under my 4 wheel cabinet just enough so it cleans a bit underneath it where other robot bumped into its edge right away, but it also managed to drive itself underneath my office chair and managed to get stuck between 5 wheels of the chair and error out there because it just couldn’t find a way out. Now I need to park the chair and spin the base with wheels so they don’t leave enough space for robot to roll underneath again.

Chassis design (Rubber bumpers)

The biggest design flaw I’ve noticed is poor protective rubber bumper placement. Or lack of it entirely. Roomba S9+, the most expensive robot from iRobot doesn’t have any. Yet it uses front face bumper to register some collisions. You have no idea how ugly robot looks after it has some range on its clock. Entire front glossy as well as matte plastic full of scratches and dents. It’s not a pleasant sight. Dyson 360 has the same problem. Being tall and without any rubber bumper, it’ll look all messed up and worn out over time. These may have advance sensors and cameras, but they still hit into things. Not to mention it will eventually also damage furniture and equipment in your home with repeating collisions.

Some are a bit better by having a silicone/rubber bumpers in the front in a form of a strip, but they are often either placed way too low or way too high, so it keeps hitting things with plastic. Why is it so hard to place two rubber strips, one at the lowest point and another at highest? Chance of getting something in between becomes very unlikely. I’ve added a strip of self adhesive window gasket on one robot at the highest point and then it stopped hitting things with chassis directly. Looks a bit ghetto if you look close, but why wasn’t this done properly in the factory?

Docking station avoidance radius

One of biggest issues a lot of robots have is docking station avoidance algorithms. Midea robot often literally ran over its own docking station when cleaning. Never got stuck, but it makes funny noises. And it cleaned dust of the station which was useful. Rowenta, avoids it in a moderate arc. Similar with iRobot. But I’ve seen some that avoid it in 2 meter radius which is just ridiculous. I have my robot under the desk and such huge avoidance radius would mean it would never ever even clean underneath the desk.

Docking station finding when returning

It’s funny how some robots have issues returning home. Usually those with cameras do just fine because they have a visual representation of the room and where they started, but a lot of camera-less systems seem to just get lost and stuck somewhere after they finish. Rowenta Series 60 for example is often acting like a dork. It has the dock in sight, like 1,5m away yet it bumps, rotates and drives in opposite direction. It usually finds way back, but it’s just funny how it’s almost there, but doesn’t see it. Midea on the other hand looked like it had a rough idea where to go for docking and then looked up the dock when in range. When it couldn’t, it followed the walls until it found the dock. Because you usually place the dock somewhere against the wall. Which is a neat trick. At worst it’ll do a larger circle around room, but it’ll find it.

Cleaning start condition free or from dock

Apparently some robots are not aware of the starting condition. Meaning, if you take it off the dock and for example carry it to a different floor and send it to work there, it’ll just fruitlessly try to find the docking station after cleaning is done. I don’t have enough info how common this is and at least for Midea it seems to be aware whether it starts from the dock and when it doesn’t. When started manually off the dock it always instantly stops and says “Cleaning completed” when it’s done. But when it starts from the dock, it tries to return to it. Which is a very basic but neat thing.

Side brush design

There are several quite common design flaws when it comes to side brushes. And it’s pretty amazing or shall I say shocking that so many vendors mess this up.

Most common problem is that side brushes spin way too quickly, flicking debris around. This especially becomes problematic with camera navigation which is very systematic and anything it flicks into the area that was marked as “already cleaned”, it’ll never return there to pick it up.

Another issue are designs with single side brush, most commonly used by Roomba robots. Sure it has logic so it always does the wall following cycle with the correct side, but the issue with single brush is that only one side is sweeping debris and dirt inwards toward the main roller brush. Which often means the wheel on side without the brush is driving on dirt, smearing it around. Where dual brushes create a super wide zone that’s moving dirt inwards where main roller brush picks it up and collects in the dust bin. And dual side brushes in most cases also sweep against the wheels, cleaning them as well as brushes itself.

Third issue are very short side brushes. Again, most noticeable on Roomba S9 series. Single, very short brush. Not only it just twists in a really weird way on carpets, its reach underneath furniture and against walls is quite noticeable as it often leaves debris near walls and just doesn’t clean dust under furniture where it’s only few millimeters of gap between furniture and ground.

Main roller brush

There are generally 2 different designs. Dual brush design which is patented by iRobot and single brush design used by everyone else. Roomba dual brushes rotate in opposing directions, inwards. This can help grabbing larger objects and using rubber brushes without bristles helps with pet hair and just hair in general coz it doesn’t get tangled up on roller brushes. Downside is they also tend to flick things instead of picking them up. Also makes robot easier to climb on carpets.

Other robots, well at least I can fully confirm for Midea and Rowenta S60 use a rubber strip right behind the roller brush, acting like a scoop. It’ll never flick anything past it because the rubber strip is all the way to the ground and brush is rotating against it, brushing up any and all debris into the bin. Downside is that these scooping rubber strips tend to catch on carpet edges, causing robot to have problems climbing thicker carpets.

Another funny design is yet again with Dyson 360 where wheels (well, “Tank Tracks”) are actually in front of the roller brush as it’s driving around. It’s funny because it means its own wheels always go across all the dirt, increasing chance of things tangling up into drivetrain as well as smearing dirt or rubbing it into surfaces instead of picking it up first and then driving own wheels across clean surface. All others have roller burshes in front and those that do not have side brushes that sweep in front of wheels which neatly solves that “issue”.

Dust bin design

Of all robots I’ve seen and even used, Midea MR06 has the best dust bin design I’ve seen. Period. Full stop. It has a lot of space, one way ingest hatch, large prefilter, large main filter, easy access to all its parts, easy access to main filter and the dust bin can easily be taken out of robot whether on dock or not. Benefit of such design is super easy maintenance and super high efficiency. One way hatch ensures spiders and bugs that it sucks into the bin can’t escape. Which is super neat. Large prefilter and main filter ensure robot can pick up huge amounts of dust without ever getting it fully covered in dust. Usually entire dust bin is absolutely filled with dust chunks before it even clogs the prefilter. Design on MR06 is so good it once managed to gobble up entire really thick crayon that my nephew dropped under the sofa. When bin was already almost full of dust. That’s super impressive.

Rowenta S60 for example has easy to the dust bin itself, but has no one way hatch on the dust bin entrance which is rather narrow so it wouldn’t ever be able to pick up that crayon, prefilter is attached to main filter and both are tiny. Which means dust will build up on prefilter and clog both prefilter and main filter, way before dust bin is even full. Roombas with microfilter have these weird boxes with this bizarre plastic trap hatch that doesn’t really serve any purpose and higher end models like E5 and E6 have dust bins that have a very rough prefilter with no way of getting inside the dust bin for easy maintenance. Both Rowenta and iRobot are huge companies and you’d expect them to do better than this. I’m still looking for a way to make a larger prefilter for my S60. Would be relatively simple if I had a 3D printer, but I’ll think of something. Currently I’ve added standard vacuum cleaner motor filter of same size as main filter which seems to help a lot. But it’s still same size as main filter. I want to make a prefilter of same size as the entire width of the dust bin and make it removable for easy cleaning. That should help it hugely.

And lastly, what annoyed me the most with Dyson 360, the orientation of the dust bin when on dock. The dust bin on the robot is facing wall, not the user. Which makes it very clumsy to take out of the robot.

Wet cleaning attachments are a gimmick

Now to the wet cleaning. My Rowenta S60 happens to have an attachment for wet cleaning, a water tank with microfiber pad underneath. Water slowly drips onto the microfiber pad ensuring it’s wet entire time as it glides across surfaces. I’m not gonna say it’s entirely useless as it did wipe some dirt that didn’t get picked up by brushes and suction, but my god I shouldn’t have looked inside the robot. Wheels were all wet and smeared in wet dust as it was driving across already cleaned (and thus wet) surfaces, side brushes were wet, there was wet dust smeared all over the main roller brush, entire brush compartment, duct from the brush into the dust bin and even inside the dust bin. It’s a maintenance nightmare! Used it once when I bought it and never again.

I have to give credit to iRobot here, but for different approach. iRobot allows robot pairing. First Roomba vacuums the rooms and when it’s done, it sends signal to Braava robots which do the wet cleaning afterwards. This way Roomba will never drive across wet surfaces and smear wet dust all over its internals and Braava, the wet cleaner will really clean only the dirt that couldn’t be vacuumed regular way. Yes, it’s way more expensive, but it’s really the only proper way of doing it.

Dead Space 3 auto-save system is a pathetic trash designed by a moron

After years (8 years to be exact) of letting Dead Space 3 sit there in the backlog, I finally started playing it. And I want to know who was the motherfucker who designed this shit ass fucking garbage auto-save system in this game? The game is actually pretty decent after I slammed some ray tracing on it and fixed moronic narrow FOV, but my god, the saving is so stupid I think I’m gonna kill myself.

Yesterday I was playing that planet side complex right after I got the Arctic rig suit. The one where you get the access card in the basement with those creepy skinny cannibal creatures and then need to backtrack a bit. I’ve played it for really long, upgraded stuff, harvested resources with bots and progressed really far into the complex. But it was 1 in the morning so I “Save and quit” the game. Today I return to it and this motherfucking dumbass game last saved on the exit from the other building where I picked the Artic suit in the basement. Fucking shit didn’t even save when I entered the complex you had to backtrack to. And it didn’t save at ANY point through that complex and I had like 10 huge creature encounters and did bunch of stuff. Not only that, it saved at the moment when 3 monsters jump me right after it loads. Fuck you EA. Don’t call a button “Save and exit” when it fucking doesn’t save a damn thing. WHAT THE SERIOUS FUCK!? This is why everyone hates stupid auto save systems, because in 99% of the time they all suck ass. I rather be manually quick saving every fucking minute than being set back so far that you lose all interest to even play it again. It says it saves the inventory. Yeah ok, who gives a shit, I need to go through kilometers of some level because your fucking saving is retarded. Fuck me. I had to get this out of my system…