Image Browser, CoH Mapping, Titan Quest

I spent most of spring break drinking on the beach, and then I had sex with a fugly, fat chick cause I was drunk and thought she was hot. No wait, that was probably you. I actually spent most of my spring break coding an image browser in PHP.

It can mostly just read the files in the directory and match up thumbnails to full images. But it tries to link up images to entries in a database for extended information, like description and hits. Directories are a little more involved, requiring a full traversal of subdirectories for random thumbnails; but the product of those thumbs in my cunning folder graphic table is way snazzy. It also has the usual sorting and page selection options. The link in the nav frame goes directly to the Photo Album directory, but it’s possible to navigate up to the image root and view all my images. The only thing left to do on the image browser is keyword searches, which wouldn’t be too hard, but I’ve been engaged in other projects lately.

For one, I recently started making a map for Company of Heroes set in an interesting locale, Longwood University’s campus. It came to me in a dream (the result of too much school and CoH, probably). I saw myself commanding a German force comprised of some friends against the entire rest of the student body. I’m only roughly 10% into the project, but it should be rather interesting, whether it’s playable or not. It’s already obvious Brock Commons will be the major chokepoint of the map. A couple 88s could defend the whole thing, causing the Allies to find a way through the various buildings to flank.

But for the last couple weeks, I’ve mostly been playing Titan Quest. It’s pretty much just a Diablo clone, albeit many enhancements. I think I actually prefer TQ because of its familar story elements (Greek mythology anyone?) and less dreary atmosphere.

I had to overcome several problems to really get into TQ, though. First of all, it crashes all the time for me, even when patched. The solution I found was to just use a NoCD patched executable. This makes sense because the patched exe disables the shoddy Securom code–stuff that the developers can’t fix but are forced to include. Another problem was that my extra mouse buttons would often lag for several seconds. As one can imagine, this is really annoying and can sometimes put my character’s life in danger. I eventually noticed that Titan Quest really doesn’t like to share the CPU with other apps. Thus, the simple fix is to set its process priority to below normal. Lastly, the game doesn’t lock the mouse into the game window. But, of course, my CursorLock program easily fixed that.

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