Monday, May 29, 2006


My old computer died on me, so I splurged and got a good game-capable machine to replace it. I bought the components from Central Computer instead of going to Alienware or somewhere similar; it's really not that difficult to build a high-end machine. Mainly because there are very few choices -- you pretty much go in and say "What's the best X. Okay, I'll take that. What's next?"

The only difficult was that they didn't have the CPU I was looking for (Athlon FX-62) in stock, so I had to get another CPU (3400) to fill in until they come out in a couple months. But other than that, it has a GeForce 7900 GPU, a 750GB hard drive, and an Asus motherboard with all the bells and whistles on it. It claims to have built-in wireless, but I haven't managed to get it to work yet.

So, naturally, I can't let all this CPU power go to waste, so I picked up a copy of Battlefield 2 and started playing. BF2 is a full-battlefield first-person shooter, so not only do you have soldiers running around, but the maps are huge, so you pretty much need vehicles to cover them. And they have a big selection, from tanks, jeeps, APCs to helicopters and jet fighters.

I've spent the last day trying to learn to fly a helicopter. BF2 has a simplified model of how helicopters fly, but it's still considerably more realistic than any non-flight-sim I've played, and as a result the easiest thing to do with a 'copter is crash it. Even getting off the ground and hovering is no small feat, and being able to land where you want to (say, in a small confined space) takes some serious tap-dancing on the keys.

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