Occupational thoughts

Covering life on the home front.

Posts Tagged ‘gmod

I hate Exams.

with one comment

I did German listening and Business Studies yesterday. They were supposed to be at the same time so I took the Business test about 5 minutes after the German one. I’ve done a 3 hour exam streak before – when I did my French A-Level. But this was different because they were two different subjects and you have to change from thinking about German to thinking about Business. Not only that but I forgot I needed a calculator for Business but I hadn’t taken it out of my bag for German and when the Business test started I knew that I needed a calculator and I knew that it was in my bag. Then I asked for a calculator from the invigilator and she gave me two. Two calculators which I may hasten to add were completely broken. Eventually I was able to borrow one off Harry to whom I extent my warmest gratitude. When I got out of the exam I asked around and uncovered that actually I got the question wrong because it was the current ratio and I hadn’t put it in ratio form. That’s what pressure does to you, it blocks you from thinking properly.

When it was all over I went to summertown and bought the paper, an off sandwich (it was on the ‘reduced for quick sale’ shelf) and some chips. I had planned as a dare to go to watch Hannah Montana with some friends at the cinema but I only wanted to go on condition that I wasn’t the only boy in the cinema. The guy who issued the dare in the first place eventually agreed to go but by then my brain had melted under pressure and I was tired to the point I was in no condition to go anywhere but my bed or my desk. The reason I was so tired was because Matthieu wanted to watch Gladiatress and sort of dragged me along, I gave up after a while and went to plunder the depths of Facebook and was persuaded by someone to re-download skype so that I could explain exactly what was wrong with the education system face-to-face.

Unfortunately this soon degraded because I’m a better writer than a public speaker so I just gave a quick tour of my room using the power of video. I tried explaining the reasons why computer game violence doesn’t affect teenagers half as much as adults think it does (in fact the large majority of what we do can be attributed to an overdose of hormones. And that’s a process which happens naturally which we have absolutely no control over).  I was even ready to explain large chunks of game theory.  But as always it returned to showing the transition from ‘the Sims’ (which girls love for some unknown reason) to ‘Halo 2’ (which received the female verbal equivalent of someone vomiting on the screen).

Christine also woke me up every morning at 6:30 for no reason whatsoever. Now it’s Saturday and my body clock aligned to waking up at 6:30 which I did really punctually but to my surprise Christine was still asleep. She even came to me after the exam and in an attempt to comfort me said “don’t worry if you’ve failed: you can always take it again next year”. She came back about ten minutes later with “Actually it doesn’t matter if you fail with only Bs and Cs, look at Peter, he only got Bs and Cs and he’s got a great job!”. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that she was actually making me feel worse.

If you put me under pressure I will just dislike you more and more.

In my semi-depressed state I made some commemorative images of the Spy and Sniper updates in Team Fortress 2. It’s said that artists make better art when they’re in states of emotional unrest. In which case teenagers would be perfect artists because we’re always experiencing mood swings and are incredibly emotional.

This is what the Spy image looks like as a desktop background. The original is avaliable here.


The Sniper picture wasn’t as good, I tried doing a Spy versus Sniper one but it failed on account of Team Fortress props in Gmod doing odd things when the head is the only thing locking a prop in place. I think it’s got something to do with the model physics: they’re totally unrealistic and when taken out of Team Fortress 2 they look unbalanced and silly. It might be because of the new engine but It’s too much hassle to download the Left4Dead props to find out.


Hopefully I’ll have the time to update more because the first heat of exams is over and I’ve got a week of ‘revision-at-home’ otherwise known as ‘holidays’.


Written by Pierre

May 23, 2009 at 13:01

Posted in life

Tagged with , , ,

with 3 comments

I made this image in Gmod last week but couldn’t find an excuse to upload it. So, without further ado:
Unfortunately 571 * 468 is actually the full size of that image because I took it in 720 resolution in Gmod and it was far away so I cut out lots of the picture and resized it.

Effects do make a picture look better.


I also pondered what would make Star Control II any better than it’s current iteration. The answer: do it all in German. I can totally imagine cruising up to the Spaathi and going ‘Ich bin Kommandant Zelnick von den Schiff Vindicator. Ich wollen Sie zu mein Allianz von Frei Sterner angliedern.’ That would be awesome.

I wrote a letter in to the Oxford Times about the old people who complain to the police about cyclists on the pavement. Fingers crossed they’ll publish it.

Written by Pierre

April 27, 2009 at 20:54

Posted in gaming

Tagged with , ,

leave a comment »

It’s Sunday and I haven’t moved from this seat for almost an hour. The family are out running. They’re probably sitting exhausted in a muddy field somewhere. Meanwhile I am sitting here, enjoying life. It’s not surprising because I’ve been doing this for almost every day this week so far. I get up, put on a pair of jeans, eat cheerios and then go play Counter-Strike/Read webcomics/Watch any videos I find lying around the place.
The office is getting to be a real tip, there is paper strewn across the floor, any available desk space is swamped with disks, pens and books. I have abandoned my brilliant desk upstairs in favour of invading a desk here with my pen tablet, webcam, speakers, mouse, laptop and about twenty adaptor cables. The difference today is that Peter isn’t sitting next to me doing stuff and making me guilty because I’m supposed to be doing boring, mundane revision. I could happily walk around in my underwear and listen to loud music and drink juice out of the carton because nobody is here to impose any rules (that was a delightfully Anarchist statement!). Which, consequently has led to me doing loads of stuff this morning, I have:

  1. Watched another episode of the 1992 animated X-Men series. In German.
  2. Watched the press conference held by the members of the Pirate Bay.
  3. Read a policeman’s blog and his point-of-view of the G20 protests and the incidents of police brutality.
  4. Captured more footage in Gmod which I will edit later today.
  5. Half-heartedly sketched up a storyboard to fit with said footage.
  6. Written this.
  7. Written a letter as part of my French Advanced Extension Award (think like an A-Level except harder):

Chères compatriotes au nouvel Observateur,
Je vous écris par inquiétude avec la façon dont le gouvernement exerce son pouvoir. La France est sur le point de devenir un état de surveillance. Sous couvert de sécurité nationale et le danger du terrorisme nos libertés sone écrases par de la nouvelle bureaucratie. Notre patrie est étrangle par la peur et la paranoïa, mais ceci n’est pas a cause des envahisseurs musulmane de l’Orient. Cette peur est crée par nos propres politiciens et leur reporteurs. Le seul pouvoir absolu du peuple est de voter chaque cinq ans pour un nouvel gouvernement (qui serait sans doute le même que celui qui le précède).
Une idée principale, embrase par Nicholas Sarkozy, est que le peuple est la pour servir le gouvernement et non à l’ envers. Nous avons l’opportunité de voter chaque fois que le gouvernement appelle un referendum. Ceci dit, seul le gouvernement lui même a le pouvoir d’en appeler un; nous pouvons faire signer une pétition ou arranger une manifestation. Mais c’est au gouvernement (et un peu au veux de vous, la presse) de décider si ils vont nous écouter ou pas.
La France a une belle histoire qu’on se souvient chaque 14 Juillet. Les anciens Français se sont battus pour que le peuple as le pouvoir. Ce pouvoir diminue petit par petit sue le cours des années. Est-ce-que un jour dans le futur on sera que des marionnettes de l’Etat? Ceci ne peut bien sur pas continuer. La solution par contre n’est pas d’abstenir votre vote. Il faut que vous le tenez comme votre dernier souffle et de l’utiliser comme un message dans une bouteille d’un pauvre marin abandonne sur une ile déserte. On ne vous ignorerait pas.


This is the end of the holidays (or the end of our designated study-at-home period) so this will probably be my last post for a while. When school and revision starts in earnest it’s difficult to find the will to write at all.

And I wonder why nobody’s made a Metal Gear Solid movie yet. All that’s needed is to link the cutscenes.

Written by Pierre

April 19, 2009 at 10:48

leave a comment »

I haven’t written much in the last few days because I’ve been busy making a little mini-series in Gmod. I’ve got about 2 episodes of around 3 minutes each. And also, I’ve been playing Counter-Strike with Caleb quite a lot. And I’ve been taking screen grabs (pictures) and captures (video) when playing with him. Here’s my most awesome screenshot so far:
I’d point out that [DS].dubzee was actually an admin on the Delta Squad server and trains twice a week on CS:S. Caleb got a lucky shot. Or he stole the bot’s kill. However it happened it’s an awesome screengrab.

And I made an All-Terrain-Vehicle in Gmod to act as a camera dolly:

cameradollyWell, I’m all out of pictures now. The holidays are almost over.

Written by Pierre

April 18, 2009 at 08:36

Posted in gaming, life

Tagged with

leave a comment »

I’ve been a bit occupied with a CS party and have really spent the last 2 days in a dazed, tired state. I watched some of Mille Milliards de Dollars yesterday. It’s an interesting film. I did a depth-of-field test on Gmod yesterday:

gmodpofThat’s a desk and computer I built from the props in De_Office. For some reason there aren’t any props from assault maps. I also messed around with the post-processing effects. I didn’t take any screengrabs from that because all you end up  with is an abstract kaleidoscope landscape which looks as if your PC had just taken LSD. Or a huge annoying white blob obscuring your screen. Either way, it wasn’t impressive enough to take pictures of.

And I tried my hand at a little politicale machinima. It’s a long way away from completion though.

Written by Pierre

April 10, 2009 at 17:10

Posted in gaming, life

Tagged with


leave a comment »

It’s the weekend again. 3 days since last post. Yesterday I was subjected to the world of upper class. I live in the North of Oxford so there’s much opportunity for snobbism, firstly from academics and secondly from rich students who come from far-flung corners of the world because they think it makes them cleverer to study at Oxford. But yesterday I had an extra-big injection of conservativeness. I woke up at 6:00, ate breakfast then cycled to the river. I coxed a rowing boat full of girls from the local private school. Then we got out of the river and the fat parents in Land Rovers arrived to pick up their ‘darlings’. I cycled to a local gym to shower. Most of the members are white, middle-aged and unfit; the people who clean the toilets are foreign immigrants and they get paid the minimum wage. Then I went to have lunch in one of North Oxford’s upper class hotspots: the St Edwards college restaurant. These people own enormous cricket pitches in the middle of an area where the average house price is £1.4 million pounds. And they’re so rich they can afford to eat like royalty at the college canteen, 3 meals a day, 7 days a week (It’s a boarding college). That’s my rant over. Now I’m going to speak of better things. As of now you can subscribe to our blog using ReallySimpleSyndication (RSS):
We watched the film ‘into the wild’, it was a good film with lots of idealism, morals, there was even a short burst of romance. It was a good film until the end where it stopped being a good film and made me feel ill. Having watched almost 2 hours of a man travelling America and experiencing the true joys of life, I was too attached to him to watch as he was paralysed and began slowly starving to death in a caravan in Alaska. It was a brilliant film up to that point. If you ever go to see this film, just leave the cinema in the last half-hour because from there on it gets depressing. And this morning I opened up Half-Life 2 Episode 2 in Garry’s Mod to see what was new. I wasn’t disappointed because a wide new range of features blossomed in the menu. The car from Episode 2 is there, hunters are there, the new version of Alyx is there, Maps, Props and effects have all been added. So in my state of happiness I built a small scenario: Stalker vs. Helicopter. Having played through the level in which you’re stuck in an air vent while some sadistic hunter fires at you with a flechette gun, I have exacted my revenge by taking a flechette gun from GMod, sticking a hunter in an air vent and firing at it repeatedly until it gets the message. Revenge is sweet. That’s all for now. My next post will probably be less of a jumbled mess of ideas and more of an organised diary, we’ll see.

Written by Pierre

March 30, 2008 at 12:26

Posted in life, politick

Tagged with