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Cresta Fiesta

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Posts posted by Cresta Fiesta

  1. The Dreamcast was shit and all.


    Dreamcast had enough ace games to make it worth owning. Soul Caliber, Ressie Evil, Jet Grind Radio, Phantasy Star, Crazy Taxi, MSR and the amazing Shenmui. Happy days!


    The Dreamcast was (is!) fantastic, unfortunately it had the most bizarrely awful marketing in the history of the world.


    Since it was effectively a derivative of the Naomi arcade hardware, Sega could have simply marketed it as The Arcade In Your Home, instead they chose to focus on its lamentable online 'capabilities', such as they were with a 33.6K modem with latencies often measured in seconds and at a time when most people still paid by the minute for the their internet access. Oh yes and a web browser that couldn't even display most websites properly. And hardly any games that could be played online.


    They blew most of their advertising budget on sponsoring a football team that never won anything, and by the time they cottoned on to the fact that they had the best arcadey console in the world, the PS2 was on the scene and despite being technically very similar in overall power (and actually less powerful in some areas, the DC could do full-screen anti-aliasing in hardware, the PS2 couldn't), Sony marketed it properly as the real 'next-gen' console and the rest, as they so often say, is history.


    You can get DCs for buttons on eBay with loads of games, and they're arguably worth a punt, for the likes of the games Slim has listed above, along with stuff like House of the Dead 2 and Confidential Mission (two of the best light gun games ever, but you'll need an olde worlde CRT to play them), Powerstone 1 & 2, Virtua Tennis 1 & 2, Bangai-O, Rez, Re-Volt and many more.


    I still have my original DC, safely boxed away, one day when I have a proper games room it will be resurrected and used again!

  2. The sound (just audibly) was far better on the Mega Drive though, which I assume is down to the sound chip difference. If you listen to cross platform games (just as means of a fair comparison) its a lot more noticable.


    Desert Strike for example


    Pretty kick-ass



    Bit naff. -__-


    Credit where its due though, Unirally had a fantastic soundtrack. :D


    Skitchin will always have the best Mega Drive music for me though, though the fact its actually dont by real instruments then digitilised probably helps.


    The SNES actually had the superior sound hardware, the Megadrive used a lot of FM synth effects, and whilst they did get to grips with the hardware over the years, it could never match the SNES at its best - the likes of Donkey Kong County for example.


    I owned both consoles (sometimes at the same time) and loved them both to pieces, in a lot of ways I miss the straight forward console games of the nineties, 360 and PS3 games are often massive and meandering things these days, when sometimes all you want is just a bit of kickass action.


    Gunstar Heroes on the Megadrive, for example -


    It does show the limitations of the sound hardware however, compared to something like this on the SNES - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZwrx4eMLr8...feature=related - The SNES was capable of producing music you'd really want to just listen to.

  3. Ahhhh yes the game with the borderline porn adverts that's largely a Civilisation clone when you actually play it (so I'm led to believe anyway).


    The adverts are pretty good though, I'll give it that.

  4. Yeah I had that this morning, my UPS kicked in and registered it as a surge and not a power cut (some might consider a UPS at home to be a bit over the top, but my PC is very important to me!). Unfortunately my router isn't on the UPS, and it got very upset about the whole thing, it only managed to resync after a couple of power cycles, unless the fault was somewhere further along the line and something else needed time to recover.


    I know an electricity supply is never 100%, and that's as much the case on the IOM as anywhere else (anyone know if we do better or worse than, say, the UK average?), if you've got a valuable PC and TFT, it's arguably not a bad idea to have them behind a UPS.


    When we had the really high winds a few weeks ago we had a couple of short power cuts/surges, strong enough to fry the circuit board in our boiler, so home electronics can be damaged by these things. It was quite weird to be sat in front of a cheerfully working PC and TFT in an otherwise blacked out and silent house :)


    I can't really take issue with anything he says in that piece, the truth is that it suits those at the top to keep the legal addictions in place and available, whilst waging a false 'war' against everything else.


    The decent thing to do is either make the whole lot illegal and fight that (hopeless) battle, or legalise everything and deal with the problems as a medical rather than a criminal issue, but no chance of that unfortunately.

  6. Wi-Manx have a decent selection of routers that work well with the IOM's ADSL2, they tested a load of them and came up with the best ones for the service here. Either give them a call or pop into the shop on Victoria St.


    Last time I checked, Waltons still had the v4 Neatgear DG834Gs on the shelf (the v4 has the preferred chipset), £70 IIRC.


    I quite like Netgears myself, pretty easy to configure, even the more complex stuff, should you need to.

  7. Had lunch today there with Mrs Cresta and it was pretty good.


    Nothing fancy, fish & chips and scampi & chips.


    Fish was excellent, really good batter, my scampi was nice, decent tartare sauce, not home made by all accounts but better than those horrible little sachets you get. They are proper chips although in all honesty they were a bit on the pale side, another minute in the fryer wouldn't have hurt them.


    Decent little side salad, bit of coleslaw, mushy peas with the fish and chips, garden peas with the scampi.


    Two meals and two soft drinks were £20, which is about par for the course these days I'd have thought.


    Staff are very pleasant, place itself has a nice atmosphere, and it's a lovely drive out there too. Not a huge amount of seating though, unless they open up the back during the day when it gets busier.


    Certainly worth a visit I'd have said.

  8. Just out of interest's sake I've asked the guy who's done this more than once across, and he said he's got car finance again with the same finance company no problem, which backs up what John said about there still being a profit in it for the company even if you do take THE MORALLY REPUGNANT RESPONSIBILITY DODGING LOOPHOLE of, ummmm, exercising a clear statutory right.


    Apparently it isn't all that unusual for people to use this MORALLY REPUGNANT RESPONSIBILITY DODGING LOOPHOLE, and he also pointed out that the companies involved would simply stop offering HP agreements and simply do straight loans if it was really any kind of problem for them.


    Which obviously it isn't.

  9. In the late 70s/early 80s, boarding house owners were handing back the keys to the bank because they could no longer service the mortgage. What else should they have done?


    The difference being that property doesn't depreciate in value in the long term like motors do. If you default on a mortgage, it's almost certain that the bank would recoup all their initial loan back by selling it on. That's not the case when they get handed back a motor that isn't worth the outstanding amount.


    Am I missing the part of this entire story where we're supposed to feel sorry for finance companies and/or financial institutions in general?


    Conister have made good money out of me over the years, they've made good money out of a lot of people, by working within the law and offering financial products that people wish to purchase, that's fine, no problem there.


    I was making a specific enquiry as to whether or not I was entitled, entirely within the rules of the law and without wishing to bend any rules, to hand back a car I'd purchased on finance, having already paid off thousands of pounds in interest and a good chunk of capital, to relieve myself of a few hundred pounds per month in expenses our household could do without at the moment. (We're not all psychic, a situation two or three years ago whereby such a loan seemed eminently affordable can change through no fault of one's own.)


    Generally speaking, I don't think banks and the finance sector do too bad out of your average person on the street - (fixed rate mortgages at a minimum of 5% when the base rate is 0.5%, thanks, motherfuckers!) - so I'm curious as to which part of my heart is supposed to be bleeding at the prospect of Conister being given back a car worth slightly less than the outstanding loan value.

  10. A few things occurred to me when watching D9, but nothing totally ruinous, although why did he hide the tube a tin box in his shack when he had an entire hidden underground lab to stash it in? and suchlike did jar a bit.


    Because the underground lab was in a different place?


    A-ha! You'd think I'd have noticed that really.


    It's still silly though, why have a very well hidden underground lab and then keep one of the most critical components of the entire 20 year plan in a flimsy and completely exposed shack? Really, you'd just do that in the well hidden underground lab as well, wouldn't you?

  11. Other potential plot holes:-


    How come when it's taken 20 years to collect enough fluid and then Wikus sprays loads of it on himself they still have enough to fly the ship?


    Also in a shanty town of 1.8 million it seems highly unlikely that the first shack Wikus looks for refuge in when the helicopters arrive just happens to be Christopher's.


    In terms of plot holes District 9 doesn't fare too bad really, I'm happy to suspend disbelief when watching a film but time and time again these days I end up thinking to myself 'Oh come on your audience really isn't that stupid.'


    (I'm looking at you, The Dark Knight, ludicrously overblown lump of steaming shit that didn't even make any sense, god I hate that film.)


    A few things occurred to me when watching D9, but nothing totally ruinous, although why did he hide the tube a tin box in his shack when he had an entire hidden underground lab to stash it in? and suchlike did jar a bit.


    I watched D9 again last night and am happy to confirm that on the Cresta Ass-Kick-O-Meter, it gets a healthy 9 ass kicks out of 10.


    Also, the final awesome killing frenzy with the robot is one of the best losing the plot and going psycho sequences ever committed to film.


    Finally, it's so refreshing to see a sci-fi action film pitched at a more mature audience, with proper violence and swearing in it (they were always going to get an R in the States), I hate films that have been neutered to get the coveted PG-13 in the States which is usually a 12 or 12A here. The 12/12A phenomenon is one of the main reasons I get films on DVD these days and watch them at home instead of going to the cinema, bloody children with their noises and laughing in the wrong places and rustling sweet wrappers and not understanding anything properly.


    That's why they have to go to school, 'cause they're stupid!

  12. But Chinahand, you have to consider why the law allows this to happen; it is to redress, in part, the unequal bargaining power of the borrower against the lender. That is why there are 'cooling off' provisions in most credit legislation. It is very easy for a consumer to be carried along with the easy terms offered, but in the cold light of day realises that it is not really affordable or what they want so they can cancel. Legislation has addressed the moral issue of pressure selling of credit and gives an out to the consumer who is taken along by the offer of something for next to nowt (which, in most cases when viewed month by month probably is very cheap, but tot it up at the end and it is quite costly).


    The example in hand is that the borrower has now decided that continuing with the credit arrangement is possibly to their detriment, legislation (possibly) allows them to cancel and they wish to do so, where is the ethical argument in that? The ehtical argument is when they first enter into the arrangement; do their ethics allow them to enter into obligations they have no intention of fulfilling, or have they been wooed into accepting obligations beyond their means?


    Now, having entered into an arrangement in goodfaith on both sides the consumer now finds that it may not be to his advantage to continue and finds that there is the legal escape route; how unethical is it to take it?


    CF wants to find a legal route out of an arrangement which no longer is advantageous to him, his ethics and morals are beyond reproach because he wants to use the law, which facilitated the arrangement in the first place, to get him out of the situation.


    I agree that, as a society, we are becoming more legalistic in our approach to things, but there are some situations which are created by law and which are only solveable by law. There is no higher authority looking after credit, it is an entirely commercial arrangement governed by contract and statute. Where would the ethics be if, for example, a single parent bought a pram on HP, couldn't keep up the payments, and the credit company repossessed the pram?


    And that's one-nil to Gladys, referee calls full time.

  13. why not just do a trade-in and renegotiate the finance on that, no black marks against your history, just the norm of people changing their car, must be done all the time like that.


    I know one chap (a long time ago) had a small shunt (on ice ?), changed the car for a new one, HP went down !


    Well that's what I'll do, since the car is actually worth rather more than I thought it was, and a loan isn't covered anyway, just HP.

  14. I don't see how this is a moral issue. If the financing had been taken out with the intention of terminating it early then perhaps that is a bit questionnable, but exercising your statutory rights as a consumer seems OK to me.


    However, as previous posters have said, it may make future credit arrangements tricky.


    ans said that consumer protection is morally repugnant, get on-message Gladys, sheesh!

  15. I know that in the first 18 months to two years or so the actual amount I'd paid off the loan was very little, literally just a grand or so, despite having made payments of many thousands of pounds, I got a 'flat rate' loan which is apparently stupid and I should have got a normal APR loan or something, not that the lovely people at Conister explained that to me whilst eking out their tiny profits from the benevolent transaction.

    Did Conister force you to take out a loan agreement? I'd guess not.


    Your "apparently stupid" flat rate loan is how car finance is done. What they do is take the amount loaned say £10,000 then add the interest to the amount owed. So (using example figrues here, but probably not far off) you take out a loan for £10,000 and agree in advance that you will pay them 6.5% per annum for 5 years, so the amount that you agree to repay them is £13250, in equal installments over 5 years. In some cases they'll load in an arrangement fee.


    You're not repaying interest first then capital - you're paying back in equal installments the amount you originally agreed to pay them.


    Sounds like a con to me, there should be legislation for this sort of thing.


    I think I'll crash the car into Conister's offices and claim it as a write-off.

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