Monday, October 06, 2003

Well, today was very good for a Monday. Calc is finally getting better--I'd trade Riemann sums for partial fractions anyday. Riemann sums bore the hell out of me but they're better than things which confuse the hell out of me. I think the Second Fundamental Theory of Calculus is that it is either mind-numbingly boring or mind-bogglingly confusing. Chem, of course, was cool, even though we're only talking about the Universal Gas Consant and pressure and volume and such. It's funny that even though this stuff is less stressful than usual, my hives are still buzzing (ha! ha! no) and making life difficult.
Andrew and I played an awesome game of Starcraft online tonight. For those of you who haven't heard of it, there are three races you can play:
1) The Terrans. Descendants of Earthlings who live in a distant galaxy called the Koprulu Sector governed by a Confederation of various mining companies. My favorite team, for obvious reasons. Advantages: movable buildings (and thus mobile bases), overall good ground units, and all around useful runabout machines called Space Construction Vehicles. Think of the MI in Starship Troopers except that they establish bases. Weaknesss: Unsound building structures (they tend to blow up when badly damaged. NOT a good thing.). I suppose there are other tactical disadvantages, but overall the Terrans are the most cost-effecient group.
2) The Zerg. Good if you're up to the challenge. Keeping it in the Starship Troopers analogy, the Zerg are the bugs. The Hive structure, overall insectoid appearance, etc. The usual "arachnid" type of alien that exists in our sci-fi mentality. However, since a Zerg base is necessarily located around a Hive, their entire infrastructure is dangerously centralized around their Hatchery (the "brains" of the Hive mind). Advantages: their heavy warriors (Hydralisks) are dangerous to air and ground units and can overwhelm anything in large enough groups. They also have a lot of long range attacks used by their Queens and Defilers, both of which are biological in nature and nasty to deal with. (Think alien infestation, plague, contagion, and so forth). They can also heal when they aren't in active combat. The other main disadvantage besides the Hive mind weakness is a lack of good air units.
3) The Protoss. A super intellgient rage whose name means "first born." Advantages: Their units are probably the best in the game. All of them have powerful weaponry and stronger armor than any other equivalent unit in the Terran or Zerg forces, and every building and creature is further protected by a plasma shield which recharges itself when not in use. For example, the Protoss Zealot and the Terran Marine (the grunts of both armies) have the following stats:
Marine: 40 hit points armor, 6 damage Gauss rifle [supercharged Vulcan cannon]
Zealot: 80 hit points armor, 80 hit points plasma shield, 16 damage psi blades [energy knives]
However, their superb and superior units come at a proportional cost. The Zealot costs 3 times as much as a Marine and can't attack air units. Andrew has mastered playing them, and I do pretty well as the Terrans. The main improvement this time was that I didn't die and actually pulled my own weight. Usually Andrew has to bail me out or work without me (last time I got destroyed). Anyways...a fun evening. Today, Starcraft, tomorrow, the solar system. Now all we have to do is master intergalactic travel.

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