Baldur’s Gate 3 opens with the best use of cinematics I have ever seen in a video game. It starts in media res, immediately establishes the danger and the stakes, and is absolutely thrilling, both to my inner child and to one surprisingly adult fear for a D&D game.
Goodness the game does *not* play around.

"Oh my this is a situation a first level character has ABSOLUTELY NO BUSINESS being in the same room with. Good thing that enemy is distracted."
Enemy: kills distraction and turns to me.
Game: Introducing the Dash feature.
And that, Internets, is how a 30+ year veteran of Dungeons and Dragons got a TPK in the second fight of the game, for thinking "Meh I don't need to spend the action Dashing I am obviously far away enough from $TERRIFYING_MONSTER."
I swear that thing had an inch less move in second edition.
Game does not mess around, continued: next major set piece battle involves enemy who outnumbers party by approximately 2:1 when they have much better group comp than I do.

“Ah but I am smart; I know to target the one on robes first”

First enemy to act natural 20s my mage.

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More from @patio11

2 Jun
Inbox: "How many LLCs can a person have?"

Typically LLCs are counted one, two, a shedload. The thing which provokes a shedload is either a) financial structuring or b) many parallel projects with similar but distinct risks that one wants to silo from each other.
This makes real estate investors a particularly intensive user of them; many professional investors would have every property owned by its own LLC, potentially having a number of LLCs being members of that LLC (representing various investor interests, etc).
(If you think tech company cap tables are complicated try commercial real estate sometime. *shudders* My dad has stories which give me apoplexy.)
Read 5 tweets
1 Jun
Ruriko to Kuroneko (Japanese UPS): "Can you take my husband a brown shopping bag of clean clothes?"
Kuroneko driver: "We can only accept sealed packages, unfortunately."
Ruriko: "Oh dear."
Kuroneko driver: "So I'll need to fold the top of the bag together and apply masking tape."
Meanwhile the last time I visited the US Kuroneko and purchased a cardboard box ($10) to ship domestically (~$50) they would not give me masking tape for the box but would let me purchase a separate single-use roll for $3.50.
Part of the reason for Japanese logistics being so darn good as an experience is it treats the last quarter mile problem like the customer service that it is.
Read 7 tweets
1 Jun
Satisfactory and similar factory games push a lot of my startup / operator buttons.

"Dang it I'm having brownouts in the factory. Time to throw down four coal power plants."

"Now I'm constrained on coal! Well, I'll just divert some from the foundry."

"Foundry offline?!"
I mean sure you can actually *plan* this since it is all math, but where is the fun in that?

(Plus occasionally the time efficient thing to do introduces a bit of chaos into the orderly clocklike rhythm of your factory, such as using automated trucks versus belt lines.)
There's a very interesting optimization where the game doesn't do physics simulations of trucks outside of a bubble around the player, instead just teleporting them between waypoints. I once accidentally glanced at a truck crossing a bridge and Heisenberg uncertained it off of it
Read 4 tweets
30 May
Speaking of which: it is Day 136 for and I have the update baton.

Today, as always, the most important thing we did was collect information on where to get the covid-19 vaccines and fan it out to places where vaccine seekers will think to look.
We're increasingly relying on the "web bank" versus "phone bank" for our marginal data ingestion. The supply situation is uneven across the U.S. but the spottiness has largely worked its way out of the system; we more rarely see things change when calling a location repeatedly.
The data which continues to be very volatile is local government and community-run pop-up or mobile vaccination clinics. They often exist only for a few hours after being announced a day or handful in advance.

We mostly find out about these via tool-assisted people keying in.
Read 6 tweets
30 May
As the vernacular goes, I've got a bit of personal news: early this June I'm stepping back from my day-to-day role with .

The team will continue on the project until the end of the critical period for the pandemic; we're shooting for late summer.
It's been the experience of a lifetime to work with smart, passionate people running into a gap in core infrastructure. I think it was the most important thing I've done in my career to date.

After a few weeks with my family (I haven't seen them since January), back to Stripe.
Lots more to say on this topic eventually, but for the moment relaxing and waiting out my last few days of quarantine, while getting a few things tied up for the team.
Read 5 tweets
26 May
I wonder whether one post-pandemic change in how things work is going to be continuing the new (lower) level of call center staffing for e.g. banks and air carriers.
It's been about 15 months of "We're experiencing elevated hold times" being constantly plastered across digital channels and rather aggressively trying to move routine inquiries to apps.
And while there was certainly an actual operational necessity to limit the number of reps per floor, the vaccination progress through the U.S. should have at least U.S.-based call centers OK to operate at normal capacities by this point.

I think some firms prob choosing not to.
Read 5 tweets

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