Newish RTX 2080Ti

Because of the cryptocurrency market crash, GPUs have really come down in price. They probably have a further ways to go but I decided that I’d waited long enough to finally upgrade my GTX 1050Ti, and picked up a supposedly-barely-used refurbished eVGA RTX 2080Ti Black Edition off eBay. The seller claimed it was bought from eVGA’s refurb department and used for only two weeks in a gaming rig. I’m not sure sure I believe that, but I figured it was a worthwhile risk to take. The total cost was $550 after tax and shipping, which happened to be almost exactly what I’d earned by participating in the itch.io queer games bundle, so that worked out nicely.

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Stepmania in 120Hz

A bit before I got sick I finally upgraded my home theater receiver, to a Denon AVR-S760H, mostly to finally get HDMI 2 support so that I could finally get 4K video from my connected devices (especially my Playstation 4).

As an obvious bonus, this means I can also run my connected Windows PC at 4K. Its GPU (a 1050Ti) isn’t quite up to snuff for that for gaming, though, although having desktop and web browsing at 4K is quite nice.

Stepmania defaults to running in a borderless window instead of proper fullscreen, though, and so even though it only internally renders at 1080p, it then tries to upscale to 4K, and gets very laggy as a result. Running at native 4K isn’t really any slower, at least, but it’s stil laggy and unplayable.

However, I discovered that if I set the fullscreen mode to exclusive, then setting the resolution to 1080p unlocks much higher framerates, up to 120Hz, because my TV supports VRR and 120Hz. (Ostensibly it supports this on 4K as well, although Stepmania didn’t offer this configuration, likely due to my GPU.)

So anyway, Stepmania at 120Hz is ridiculously smooth — almost uncanny in its smoothness. It also makes steps register with much greater precision, and I’m actually surprised at how much more responsive the game as a whole feels now.

It still does nothing to help me with my cough or fatigue, though. But it was still nice to play for a little bit.

There are no happy endings

The recent unfortunate and tragic news about Alec Holowka has hit me very hard. On the one hand, I was a fan of his music and games, and saddened that he could be responsible for such things. But also the reaction at large to every stage of this whole horrible affair has been dredging up some very bad, stressful feelings that have been affecting me for the past eight years, and I feel it’s finally time to talk about it publicly.

I am not going to name names, even though the names are easy enough to figure out. I don’t want this to be about me, either, but I am necessarily talking about a thing that happened to and around me, and affected many people in a profound, terrible way.

In particular, I have at least something of an understanding of what Scott Benson is going through right now.

This is probably going to be a difficult read.

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The Legend of Korok: Breath of the Orcastraw

Of all the streamers I follow on Twitch, my favorite by far is Orcastraw (Kaitlyn). She maintains an amazing community of chill, accepting people, and has the most positive (and well-moderated) Twitch chat I’ve ever seen. She first came to my attention when she was the first to run Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild at Games Done Quick, and she had the BotW Any% world record for around a month shortly after that (and even a year later her record-setting run is still 6th place overall). Her attitude is what even got me interested in watching Twitch regularly, running my own occasional stream, and even becoming more confident in my own gender presentation. Basically, she’s pretty neat and is worth watching if you’re into this sort of thing.

Recently she started making streaming her main source of income, meaning that her livelihood depends primarily on viewer donations. As part of her September donation drive, she offered an incentive: at the $250 mark she would do an all-Koroks run of BotW.

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