Note: The particularly important details and music artist names are in bold text. Licensed music track names are in italics. The year is 1973, five years after the events of the Mafia III, and 22 years since Vito Scaletta’s seen or heard from his old friend Joe Barbaro. The canon ending of Mafia III with this Mafia IV story is Vito taking over the city after Lincoln skipped town, however Cassandra and Burke are left alive and loyal to both Vito and Lincoln still. Burke was able to survive his liver cancer by getting a black market liver transplant in Mexico, like he did in his ending, except with Vito running the city. On Vito and Lincoln’s behalf, Burke and Cassandra agree to stay behind in New Bordeaux and keep the city locked down, incase Leo Galante and the Commission try anything. The beginning cutscene is Vito answering his telephone after getting up in the morning in his new penthouse, on the top floor of the New Bordeaux casino he finished that was once Sal Marcano's, and grabbing a cup of coffee. It's Alma with some urgent news. Lincoln Clay came down to the cigar warehouse to visit her after 5 years of silence, and he has big news. Joe is alive in Empire Bay and has been this entire time. However, as punishment for his actions, he's become Leo Galante's personal driver against his will and is forbidden from contacting Vito ever again, or else him and Vito will be killed. Alma then tells Vito to meet Lincoln at the airport to learn more, as he's already there awaiting Vito's arrival. When they're away from anyone who could listen in on their conversation, Lincoln tells Vito he has a friend named John Donovan he's going to introduce him to, hiding in the outskirts of Empire Bay, ready to help Vito and Lincoln with their new mission Vito gets dressed in one of his signature trench coats with a suit and tie, ready to rain down hell on the Vinci crime family and their allies, and finally be reunited with his lifelong friend he previously thought was dead, Joe Barbaro. Here is my idea for the kill list, all related to the Commission in Empire Bay and their allies.
Leo Galante - Top target on the list, Vinci family consigliere who's in with the Commission and the man you thought put Joe in the ground for the past 22 years. Bury this wrinkly old cocksucker.
Johnny Galante - Vinci family capo and younger relative of Leo's mentioned in Cassandra's ending, possibly Leo's cousin even. John Donovan knows that the two are close, and that Johnny's a valuable asset to Leo's organization. Kill him both to hurt Leo's earn and influence, and to hit him straight in the heart by taking away his family and everyone he loves
Michele Galante Jr. - Another Vinci family capo, and Leo Galante’s youngest brother. Killing Leo’s little brother will both take away one of his most reliable allies, and leave him stricken with grief and enraged, and more prone to making mistakes.
Nunzio Galante - Leo’s seasoned older brother by 3 years, and yet another Vinci family capo. He knows enough about smuggling that he worked out an ingenious plan for smuggling military grade weapons into the city. He pays off corrupt officials at Empire Bay International Airport, to allow guns to be loaded inside the walls and floors of planes, unknown to everyone onboard save for the palms the Galantes and Frank Vinci have greased to cooperate and keep quiet. The time has come to put this crafty old bastard in the ground.
Don Frank Vinci - Frank Vinci is the boss of the Vinci crime family, the family Leo's been a consigliere of for decades, and a lifelong friend of his. Kill Frank, and Leo loses more ground than he could ever imagine, and will be forced to deal with both the loss of his boss, and the loss of his lifelong childhood friend.
Don Ennio Salieri - Longtime close friend of both Frank Vinci and Leo Galante, Don of the Salieri crime family, and a third party Frank and Leo call in to crush Vito's uprising, when it becomes too big of an issue for Vinci alone to handle. Salieri was eventually able to grease enough palms while behind bars to have his life sentence overturned, and he got released from prison on good behavior in 1953, after he served 15 years of his sentence. He’s since relocated to his main operations to Empire Bay, having already had connections and men present there while he was in prison, backed by the Commission and the Vinci crime family. He's seasoned, but he’s nothing Mr. Scaletta can't handle. Give this tired old fuck the gangland ending he's had coming.
Isaac - Isaac is the personal assistant to an influential loan shark named Bruno Levine, who handles the money of the Commission, including the Vinci crime family and the Salieri crime family. He does anything from serve his boss coffee, to count incoming and outgoing money for Bruno. Because of his duties, he's aware of Bruno's location at all times. You’ll need to get to Isaac to get information on his boss out of him, and dispose of him afterwards if you want to get to Bruno.
Bruno Levine - Bruno is a Jewish-American loan shark who kicks up all of his earn to both Frank Vinci and Ennio Salieri, and the Commission in Empire Bay. Killing him kills a lot of earn for the Commission, and they loses a valuable asset. In addition to getting rid of him being practical, to add insult to injury, he gave your father that loan. It's about time to put this asshole out of business.
Mr. Chu & Mr. Chu Jr. - This old man has been leading the Empire Bay Triads with an iron fist since before you were even born. The bastard has a son too, who eventually went on to become his underboss. The Empire Bay Triads became a close ally of the Vinci crime family, the Salieri crime family, and the Commission shortly after Vito killed Don Carlo Falcone in 1951, forming a lucrative partnership with the Commission. Mr. Chu and his eldest son are valuable assets for Leo Galante who give him extra reach. Melt their iron fists and show these two pricks just who they fucked with.
Eddie Scarpa - This cocksucker used to be Carlo Falcone's underboss for as long as you could remember. After you whacked Falcone in the fall of 1951, he decided to throw in with Vinci to save his own skin. He took over the smuggling and dock union extortion that fat fuck Derek Pappalardo used to run. You know all too well how to deal with this sorry fuckin' rat.
I'm thinking Vito and Joe work with Lincoln Clay and John Donovan to split up Empire Bay and distribute territory to three other factions not unlike what Lincoln did with New Bordeaux. This time though, this is a much larger city in a much, much different part of the United States. The empire building mechanics would be a lot smoother, more robust, and streamlined compared to Mafia III. They would work similarly a more modernized version of how the game Scarface: The WorldIs Yours handled it's empire building and management mechanics, minus the whole switching to other characters lower on the ladder to do your bidding. This would be ideal for a story rich organized crime game in my opinion. Here are my ideas for those factions, all close allies of the up and coming Scaletta crime family. The Cuban mob led by Alma Diaz. Vito goes way back with Alma, and she does not hesitate to answer him and Lincoln's calls to save Joe's life and royally fuck both Leo Galante and the Vinci family. Conti crime family, led by Enzo Conti. This Conti crime family formed sometime in late 1968, months after Lincoln helped Enzo flee New Bordeaux and drop off of Sal Marcano's radar. It turns out he fled north to Empire Bay and finally formed his own family, having more than enough years of experience in the underworld to handle the job. Lincoln's tight with him and manages to recruit him to Vito and Joe's cause. The Yakuza, based out of Empire Bay's Japantown. Longtime sworn enemies of the Empire Bay Triads, with bad blood going back decades. They would greatly enjoy seeing Mr. Chu and his son's heads mounted on pikes, along with whacking everyone who's ever supported their organization. You don't know them well, and they're known to be very unpredictable and ruthless. Use these traits to your advantage when taking on the Commission of Empire Bay and their friends. I should mention as expected, this entire 1973 section where you play as Vito is much shorter than Mafia III. Vito's takeover is shown much more quickly over time than Lincoln's, and there's time skips during it, to keep it short and sweet, and to show onscreen only what's important. There is also no option for your underbosses to betray you, as to reduce confusion and keep the story consistently the same each playthrough, like the first two Mafia games. However, unlike Mafia III, after all of these tasks are completed and every single assassination target on Vito’s kill list is dealt with, the game does not end. In fact, it's not even anywhere near close to being over yet. Vito's 1973 section was merely the beginning act. It was really a lead up to an entirely new Mafia story, centering around a newcomer to the American mob. Fast forward two years following Vito’s rampage that led to him taking over Empire Bay and the Commission, in the year 1975 him and Joe now rule Empire Bay, with Vito as the Don of the Scaletta Crime Family, and Joe working as his loyal underboss. You play the rest of the game as a young up and coming soldato named Louis in his 20’s, who’s a rising star in Vito’s organization. Do right by Mr. Scaletta and Mr. Barbaro, understand kid? My basic idea for the character and his backstory is that he's a young Italian-Canadian mobster from Toronto, Ontario, or whatever Mafia's equivalent of it could be called. Let's call him Louis DeAngelo. (No relation to Tommy Angelo) His family hails from Tuscany in Italy and moved to Toronto, Ontario in 1939, shortly after World War II broke out in Europe. Louis DeAngelo was born in July 1952 in Toronto, and was raised in Toronto's Little Italy. Louis fled south to Empire Bay when the feds started cracking down on his old family and put his boss in prison, and he ended up finding a new home with the Scaletta crime family. The first few missions playing as Louis DeAngelo involve shooting your away out of an arrest by a Toronto Police Service SWAT team in Toronto in December 1974, seeing the rest of the members of your old crime family either get arrested or shot in front of you as you make your escape. You spend the next two missions fleeing Ontario through Quebec and upstate New York, before finally arriving in Empire Bay in early 1975, late January to be exact. Winter is in full force with snow everywhere, Louis' arrival to Empire Bay for the first time in his life mirroring Vito's return to Empire Bay in 1945 30 years earlier, except under far different much more dire circumstances. Louis' older brother and his father, both capos in his old crime family in Toronto, are shown to be arrested by the TPS SWAT team in his first mission, the same one that attempted to gun him down when he resisted arrested. Louis knows someone had to have ratted out his old crime family, and he wants to find out who someday. The thing is though, he doesn't just want to kill them. He wants to get out of them why they did it before he kills them. More than anything else, he just wants to find out why his crime family was betrayed and served up to the feds on a silver platter, having most of his biological family sent to prison in the process. He’s out to uncover the mystery of why his family fell apart, and he’s more than willing to help people like Don Vito Scaletta and his underboss Joe Barbaro to eventually get the answers he seeks. I came up with the idea for this character because I figured that playing as a fugitive from the law made sense for the mob life, and I'm surprised we haven't had a fugitive protagonist in the Mafia series yet. In the 1975 chapters while playing as Louis, the Watergate scandal, President Richard Nixon’s resignation, and the official end to the Vietnam War are both discussed on the in-game radio during news segments. In the last 1979 chapter, the beginning of the Soviet-Afghan War is also the subject of a news segment on the radio. The story eventually transitions into the 1980's as years pass, with the scenery, cars, and music changing accordingly, and historical events of the time discussed in the game. By the time the game ends, it's 1992, and significant historical events from the past few years at the time that are covered on the radio in-game include anything from the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Gulf War, the collapse of the Soviet Union, to the 1992 L.A. riots. The rise of the internet and home computers are briefly touched upon during news segments on the in-game radio during the early 1990's section of the story, but not greatly delved into given their relative infancy in that time period. During this entire 1975-1992 stretch of the story, Vito is no longer playable, and Don Scaletta takes a backseat in the story as a main supporting character, similar to Don Salieri throughout Mafia: Definitive Edition. You now play as the Italian-Canadian Scaletta family soldato Louis DeAngelo, who is later promoted to being a capo in 1985. However, unlike Don Salieri, Don Scaletta has much more integrity, and has more genuine loyalty for his men and his associates. If you've beaten Mafia 1 or Mafia: Definitive Edition, you'll know this is something Salieri lacked in the end. The game will include a number of hit music from the 70’s that played on the radio back then, such as Bobby Womack’s Across 110th Street and Tony Christie’s (Is This the Way to) Amarillo, The Grateful Dead's Casey Jones and at least a few songs by the then new American rock band Cheap Trick, as well as popular songs from the 1960’s people still listened to at the time, such as Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs’ Wooly Bully, King Crimson’s 21st Century Schizoid Man,Zager and Evans' In the Year 2525, The Zombies' Time of the Season, and Nancy Sinatra’s These Boots Are Made for Walkin'. When you progress through the game, especially after you switch to playing as Louis DeAngelo for the rest of the story, years change, and the music changes. Different songs start playing on the radio, such as Sylvester's You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real),Randy Crawford's Street Life, and The Village People's Y.M.C.A., Cheryl Lynn's Got to Be Real, Gloria Gaynor's I Will Survive, and the Bee Gees' Stayin' Alive start playing in the 1979 portion of the game. After you've completed the 1975 section of the game, Foghat's Slow Ride starts playing on the radio. Starting in the 1977 section of the game, Cheap Trick's I Want You to Want Me and Heart's Barracuda start playing on the radio. In the 1980's portion of the game, Thomas Dolby's songs Hyperactive! and She Blinded Me with Science, in addition to Night Ranger's Sister Christian also start playing on the radio. If Hangar 13 can afford the licenses, I also think a few Michael Jackson and Madonna songs should definitely be on the radio during the 1980's portion of the story, given the immense popularity and regular radio airtime those two had in that decade. If this ended up being possible, I imagine that Michael Jackson's Smooth Criminal, Beat It, Bad, and Billie Jean being on the radio in the 80's sections would be a must, Smooth Criminal especially because of how well it suits the series. Madonna's Lucky Star, Burning Up, Like a Virgin, and Borderline would also be perfect for the 80's portion of the game to me. Also mentioned by NPCs and civilians in the game are topical events of the time period, such as the release of the groundbreaking 1973 horror film The Exorcist at the end of Vito's playable portion of the game. Other music of the 1980's segment when playing as Louis DeAngelo for the remainder of the game includes hits of the era such as Joe Jackson's Steppin' Out, The Buggles' Video Killed The Radio Star, Corey Hart's Sunglasses at Night,Laura Branigan's Self Control and Gloria, The Weather Girls' It's Raining Men, A-ha’s Take On Me, Men at Work's Down Under, Kim Wilde's Kids in America, The Gap Band's You Dropped a Bomb on Me, Culture Club’s Karma Chameleon, Twisted Sister's I Wanna Rock and We're Not Gonna Take It, Bon Jovi's Wanted Dead or Alive and Bad Medicine, Loverboy's Working for the Weekend, Dead or Alive's You Spin Me Round (Like a Record) and That's the Way (I Like It), Tiffany’s I Think We’re Alone Now, Daryl Hall & John Oates' Maneater, Aneka's Japanese Boy, Mötley Crüe's Dr. Feelgood, Girls, Girls, Girls and Kickstart My Heart, Billy Joel's We Didn't Start the Fire, Huey Lewis And The News' Hip To Be Square, Bill Medley's (I've Had) The Time of My Life, The Police's Every Breath You Take, Whodini's Magic's Wand, Tears For Fears' Everybody Wants To Rule The World, Rockwell's Somebody's Watching Me, Regina's Baby Love, Nena's 99 Red Balloons, Earth, Wind, and Fire's Let's Groove and September, Billy Idol's Eyes Without a Face and White Wedding, Rick James’ Give It To Me Baby, Wham!'s Everything She Wants, George Michael's Careless Whisper, Toto's Hold the Line and Africa, Blondie's Heart of Glass and Atomic, and Mai Tai's History. Note that not every single year and moment of the 17 year 1975-1992 section playing as Louis DeAngelo is playable or chronicled. My idea is it would be handled similarly to how the time skips in Mafia 1/Mafia: Definitive Edition were handled. Time skips of two or more years, or in this case, even longer such as 4 years sometimes, the game skipping from 1979 to 1983. This is to keep the game and story length ideal, and not risk it getting boring or repetitive, or going on for too long. Repetition was a big problem in Mafia III even if I still thought it was a superb game, so I think it'd be best to learn from that for the next big entry. The games story will skip ahead and show onscreen only what's significant, similar to the first Mafia game and it's remake, as well as certain aspects of Mafia II. Louis starts his section as a 22 year old fugitive soldato who got picked up by another crew south of the Canadian border, and in the epilogue of the game in 1992, is promoted to the consigliere of the Scaletta crime family at the age of 40, being set to take over the family once Vito and Joe become too old to run the day to day on a regular basis. The years chronicled in the main gameplay segments are as follows: 1973 1975 1977 1979 1983 1985 1986 1987 1989 1990 1991 1992 Much more of the rural areas and countryside outside of Empire Bay are included than what was available in Mafia II. The way rural environments are handled for this hypothetical Mafia IV is akin to how Mafia: Definitive Edition and Mafia III handled their rural environments outside the main cities, except much larger in scale, given the increased power of the current new consoles such as the PS5 and Xbox Series X. This region is based off of upstate New York and the surrounding areas across multiple states in the Northeastern US, and includes forests, fields, mountains, rivers, lakes, beaches, and small towns. Also included are other cities and towns, based off of other large cities in New York like Syracuse, Buffalo, and Rochester, where other story missions, business activities, and side missions take place, along with smaller notable places like Ithaca, Binghamton, and Utica. The entire states of New Jersey, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Delaware, Maryland, and Ohio are also included, including places based off of all of their major cities and most of their notable towns in between. Large portions of Pennsylvania are included as well, including Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Scranton. Large portions of the eastern half of the Canadian province of Ontario are included as well, including cities based off of Toronto, Ottawa, and Niagara Falls. There's even a small portion of Quebec included, including Montreal and the surrounding countryside of the province outside that city, including a few small towns in southern Quebec. The player must pass a quick border patrol check when crossing the US-Canada border in a car or other ground vehicle. Wildlife is present in the game, mostly to add to the background, scenery, and immersion in rural environments on the map. These are all animals native to the Northeastern US, ranging from white tailed deer, coyotes, bobcats, Canada lynxes, rabbits, hares, groundhogs, gophers, beavers, raccoons, opossums, bats, chipmunks, red and gray squirrels, mice, and rats to more formidable and potentially dangerous animals that may sometimes attack the player, such as grey wolves, black bears, mountain lions, and moose. These last four animals are known to spawn in the mountainous regions, especially in New York, Ohio, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Ontario, including the rural regions based off of the Catskills and the Adirondack mountains. Dogs are present in the cities, towns, and settlements where humans live and keep them as pets, being walked and sometimes found in people's yards. Some are used as guard dogs by enemies and are aggressive towards the player on sight. Domestic cats are also present in the background of residential areas, and both Louis and Vito own them as pets throughout the game in their safe houses, as well as other onscreen characters we see the homes of throughout the game. Aircraft make their first usable appearance in the Mafia series too, from airplanes to helicopters. Vito cannot use planes or helicopters in his playable 1973 portion of the game, as he does not know how to pilot, being a paratrooper in World War II who never actually flew any of the planes himself. Aircraft are unlocked to use when Louis DeAngelo gets his pilot’s certificate offscreen in 1977, and at the end of a chapter set that year, Louis has to fly Vito in a helicopter to a penthouse in Downtown Empire Bay acting as a family safe house, equipped with a helipad. Louis frequently serves as a personal driver and pilot for both Vito and Joe afterwards, having done a lot in his time serving the family to earn their trust and respect. Melee weapons also make a return from Mafia: Definitive Edition, with even more variety this time. In their respective sections of the game, Vito and Louis may use anything from baseball bats, pipes, shovels, brass knuckles, golf clubs, police batons, switchblades, kitchen knives, bowie knives, ice picks, 2x4s, claw hammers, crowbars, tire irons, chain links, machetes, meat cleavers, pickaxes, hatchets, sledgehammers, to fire axes. This amount of melee weapons is so no matter what environment the player finds themselves in during a mission or any other game activity, there is usually a weapon of some sort nearby. If the player has obtained piano wire, you may also strangle an enemy to death with it from behind as a stealth kill, this being a classic assassination method infamous for being used by the Italian Mafia. Rope can also be found and used for similar strangulation stealth kills, appearing in the gameplay environments where piano wire can’t be found. There is a wide variety of new guns and explosives to use in this concept for Mafia IV, going with the new weapons of the time the game takes place that criminals quickly got their hands on. This includes the SPAS-12 combat shotgun, the Beretta 92 pistol, the AK-74 assault rifle, the mini uzi, the MAC-10 submachine gun, both suppressed and unsuppressed variants, the Beretta 92 pistol, the Taurus raging bull revolver, Glock handguns, the TEC-9 machine pistol, illegally modified to be full auto, the Ruger Mini-14 full auto variant, and even Vietnam war era flamethrowers, which I think is only natural given that as of Mafia III, we already have RPGs and grenade launchers. Late in the game from the 1989 section and onwards, the Benelli M3 combat shotgun becomes available. The Milkor MGL grenade launcher becomes available beginning in the 1983 portion of the game. Attached grenade launchers are also available for the AK-47, AK-74, and M16 assault rifles. Free ride makes a return in Mafia IV, with the player having the options to change the weather, time period, and an option to play as Louis, Vito, Joe, or Lincoln. Naturally, a multitude of new free ride missions are available as well. I previously posted a much earlier and less detailed draft of this on the old Mafia3 subreddit 3 years ago back in 2017 as an idea for a hypothetical Mafia 3 expansion where you play as Vito, but have since updated and revamped it to a possible Mafia IV plot, and fixed any plot holes I noticed and made it much more fleshed out and in depth, and focus on more than just Vito in the end. You may view my original here if you so desire, to compare. https://www.reddit.com/Mafia3/comments/6sldhp/spoiler_mafia_iii_vito_dlc_basic_plot_idea/ Feel free to give me constructive criticism on this, as I encourage this discourse and believe it is integral to growing and improving, to build upon or improve these ideas I've come up with, or say whether or not you think something like this should happen in the future. Thank you for reading!
First post...be kind! This happened way back in the dark ages, 1986. I was 21 at the time and working for a gas station that was associated with a certain grocery store chain in Washington state. It was owned by a company not affiliated with said chain, but had locations at nearly every one. As this was long before the days of debit cards, this was a cash only gas station. We didn’t even take credit cards. Customers would pull up, pump their gas and then come to my window to pay. We also sold cigarettes. No drinks, no snacks...customers couldn’t even get into my booth. I had been working there about a year when the company announced it was closing the location. My manager and I were offered positions at another location upstate and we both accepted. We moved our respective families and started our new jobs. As new hires (ugh). This station was incredible busy. We did more business in 8 hrs than my old location would do in a week. This location also had a different set up: here you would pull into the station from a single entrance, pump your gas, and then drive forward to a single exit where the “Pay Here” booth was located. There were always 2 cashiers on duty. Each cashier had a cash drawer. One thing I should note, there were also no computers. So closing the drawer down between shifts was timing consuming and tedious. We had to manually count the cigarettes remaining, and count the cash drawers. We would fill out an end of shift report listing the starting balances and the ending balances. We also had to list the gallons sold from each pump. At the end of the shift the total of gallons sold and the total cigarettes sold should equal the cash balance. It is important to note here that not once in the year I had worked for the previous location had I been off by more than 10 cents. The following morning after my first shift I was informed by the manager that I was short $50. Impossible I said, I balanced out yesterday. He said that I must have stolen that money after I had completed the paperwork. I just looked at him and said, no I didn’t. He gave me a verbal warning and said if it happened again I would be fired and the stolen money would be deducted from my paycheck this week. In the 5 days that followed I realized quickly the manager was up to something. My old manager who was just another worker now, was also accused of stealing. As was one other new employee. I can’t vouch for the other employee but I’m pretty sure she did nothing wrong. The employees that had been there awhile were never accused of anything. I did some checking and found out this manager was relatively new (had only been there about 6 months) and the other cashiers had been here before him. Only new cashiers were being accused of stealing. And that location had been having “stealing problems” for about 6 months and the turnover was high with the new employees. I came to work at 6am on a Monday only to be told I was being fired. For cause. The manager accused me of taking $500 out of my drawer the previous Friday. He said he only discovered it this morning (even though he had worked Sat and Sun). I said ok and left. I was pretty angry and instead of going home, I parked in the grocery store parking lot and proceed to settle in to watch the gas station. I knew that at 9am sharp, he would take the cash in the safe and make the weekend deposit. At 9am he left the gas station and headed to the bank. But instead of walking into the bank, he walked into the Indian “casino” next door. It’s not really a casino like we think of today, but more of a betting parlor for the races. It did have slot machines, but no card tables. I think “Well, this is interesting”. He comes out of the casino at exactly 10 am, walks next door to the bank, does his business and then heads back to the gas station. I head home with a plan. Every morning I follow him from the gas station to the casino. I take a picture of him leaving, and one of him arriving at the bank and walking into the casino. I take pictures of him coming out and then heading to the bank. I do this for 5 days straight. He even went on Saturday. On day 3 my old manager was fired for “stealing” $150. I get the film developed (no digital camera in the dark ages) note the times and dates on the back of each one. Then I call the main office of the gas company. It’s after 5 but I’m hoping someone is there. And there is. I speak to a woman and explain my situation and she says she knows exactly who I should speak to and transfers me. By some grace of God, she has transferred me to none other than the President/CEO of the company! I tell him my story and tell him I did NOT steal from his company and could prove who actually did. He took down my information and said he would be in touch. I’m thinking to myself “yeah right”. The next morning I went to the station to perform my usual observation of the manager. At 9am he leaves for the “bank”. At 10 am he comes out. At that moment 2 stern looking gentlemen approach him. One pulls out his wallet and shows him something. The other one is talking. The manager goes pale and takes a step back. Next thing I know he is being escorted to a car I hadn’t noticed and they drive off. I lose them at a traffic signal so I head back to the station. They all show back up about 5 min later, and a few minutes after that a police cruiser pulls in. The officer talks to the stern gentleman and proceeds to place the manager in handcuffs. The other man says nothing but is glaring daggers at the manager. The President called me later that after noon and informed me that the manager had been arrested for embezzlement (turns out that in 6 months he had managed to steal about $5k). He would take the store cash into the casino and gamble with it; if he won, he would make the normal bank deposit. If he lost, he would make the deposit and note in his records that we had been short the previous day. The CEO had already been focusing on that location because of the stealing and high turnover rate, but my information helped them figure out what exactly had been going on. I was thanked and sent a substantial check as a reward. My old manager was offered the manager’s job and I was offered my old job back. I declined as I had already found another job that I liked more and paid better. The gambling manager was sentenced to 1 year in jail and ordered to attend counseling for his gambling addiction. His wife divorced him and took their 3 children to California. His house was foreclosed on and he ended up in a homeless shelter. Don’t accuse me of stealing. I will get revenge. ** UPDATE** Thank you for the likes and awards! Update 2: this was my first post and I really didn’t expect all the awards. Thank you!
Hello There, with the Cayo Perico Heist being some days old already, I feel like I've gained enough experience to share my method of doing it as fast as I can with you. I'll only cover the missions neccessary for this method and approach, as covering every mission would turn this into a novel. With this approach, you're looking at $~1,3m every 1:00-1:30hrs, depending on how well the finale goes. Ironically, you get a higher payout when playing solo. Some pretty effective solo grinding.
Right, so what do you need to grind the Cayo Perico Heist? Not a lot, surprisingly. Obviously you'll need a Kosatka, however, all the extra additions like sonar or missiles are not needed. However, the onboard Sparrow is insanely useful, it's easily worth spending the $2,1m to buy it and upgrade it with homing rockets, you'll get the money back in 1-2 heists anyway. If you get the Sparrow, you can forget about all other vehicles like other Helis, Oppressors or jets, the Sparrow is all you'll ever need. About the position of the Kosatka, I'd try to leave it at Vespucci Beach, however, you can and probably will use it to fast travel to far away locations for missions. After starting a mission, turn around from the heist screen and hop directly into your Sparrow (except if you want to fast travel first). When returning from a mission, feel free to jump out of the Sparrow and parachute to the sub, you won't have to pay any insurance and the Sparrow will instantly be returned to the Kosatka, ready to be used for the next mission. Additionally, a saved outfit with a scuba suit is also useful for some prep missions.
2. Prep missions
2.1 Gather Intel The most lengthy mission. If you've already completed the heist as a leader, you'll have to steal a Velum to fly directly to Cayo Perico. This is where the fast travel of the Kosatka comes in useful. After flying off with the Velum, don't forget to return your Kosatka to storage so you can call it back later when returning. Now, what do you actually need to find? Luckily, all the random POI are not needed at all (Uniforms, Grappling Hooks, Bolt Cutters). I'm sure you've seen this post with the map of all the intel. Surprisingly, all you need to photograph is these fours spots, one of them being the sewage tunnel underwater, which only has to be scouted once, you won't have to scout it every heist. For the mission itself, just grab the nearest bike and jump over the hill on the left side of the checkpoint next to the party and drive to the comms tower. There, hack the security box (box can spawn on ground floor or on one of the 3 tower levels). The hack is fairly complicated, however you can use your training keypad in your Arcade to get familiar with it, you'll have more than enough time at the tower to figure it out anyway. If playing solo, just scope out the main reward and move on to scouting the main docks for additional loot to fill you bags, as you will not be able to open the houses inside the compound for the loot there as they require 2 keycards simultaneously. At the main docks, scope out the 2 places for additional loot and then let yourself be caught by the guards to be thrown back to the airport instantly and leave. Thats it, no more intel neccessary, only takes you about 15 minutes. 2.2 Kosatka For the approach vehicle, you'll want to use your Kosatka, so start the mission, fast travel to the mission and use your Sparrow to deal with the Heli + 3 boats. You can then just dump your heli in the water and request a Dinghy to drive back to the Kosatka to save you the hassle of landing the heli and swimming to the sub. Inside the sub, go right down the hatch and fight through the lower deck until you find the device, leave up throught the hatch ladder and leave the sub. Outside, hop into a Dinghy and drive back to your Kosatka and the mission is done. 2.3 Cutting torch Only 3 of the 4 equipment preps are mandatory, you can completely ignore the explosives as you will be using the cutting torch for any locks you encounter. The mission is very simple, fast travel back to Vespucci beach, fly to the construction site, either kill everyone and grab the drill or do it sneaky and fly back to the Kosatka, nothing huge here. 2.4 Fingerprint cloner Another pretty simple mission, fly to the warehouse, go in and be prepared to fight instantly, its unneccessary to cut the power, the guards will spot you insantly anyways. Then hack the computer, fly to the Archives, shoot the 2 cameras, get the cloner, fly back to the sub, done. 2.5 Safe codes / plasma cutter This mission depends on the main loot, you either have to go to the casino, kill a lot of people and greab some codes off the head of security, no major ways to improve here other than to shoot, as this can't be done in stealth reliably either, and fly back to the sub. For the plasma cutters, (Actually can't remember the mission right now, must not have been hard then, just do the usual Sparrow, pewpew, grab, Sparrow stuff) 2.6 Weapons FOr weapon loadouts, you have multiple choices, I suggest either going for the Conspirator or AP Pistol loadouts, they are both very viable and neither has a distinct advantage, use whichever you prefer. This mission has 2 variants, you either just do the usual "Land on office, enter office, shoot guys, hack computer, get weapons, return to sub" stuff, or you'll have to follow a Merryweather heli, kill some goons, enter an Avenger, get the weapons, jump out of the Avenger and fly back to the sub. Both aren't that hard or complicated, just some standard "get this stuff" missions. Do not forget to buy supressors for your weapons, they're only $5k 2.7 Armor For the 3 optional preps, you only need to do the armor, as the other 2 are only beneficial for going loud, which we won't do. Again, pretty simple stuff, fly to a warehouse, blow up stuff, blow up more stuff inside the warehouse, blow up a boat, done. The Sparrow is absolutely your best friend for these kind of missions, just beware that is lacks any sort of armor, so when taking off you may get shot a bit too much at times.
Right, finale ,big money. Here's how the planning screen should look Haven't tested other times of day, but night is the obvious choice for stealth WHen the mission starts, you'll be instantly thrown underwater, right next to the compound. Just dive to the sewage tunnel, cuzt the grate and boom, you're in. Inside, try to deal with all the guards before going upstairs to the office elevator. Standard stealth rules apply, kill guards outside of camera view, kill facing guards in quick succession with well placed headshots (not headshotting can cause the alarm to go off ~3s after bodyshotting them to death). Chances are, you will fail the first couple of tries until you get a feel for it. Here's the path I use: Looks complicated, but you'll get used to it When reaching the vault room, you cutting torch can make quick work of the lock, then grab the main loot and get out via the exit to the right of the main vault, turn right again and you're basically next to the compound gate. Just confirm that route and you're out. Once you're out, there will be 4 guards to deal with, not a huge issue, kill them and move on. There are bikes by the checkpoint, grab one and leave. Once you are outside the compound, a heli will be sent to search you. Have a look at what direction it flies, it will always fly straight until reaching the end of the island. Evade him once and you're good for 5-10 minutes, plenty of time to leave. Path outside the compound, at green circle, evade helicopter Drive to the docks, careful of the guards that only appear on the map once you're close to them, luckily at this point you're free to kill anyone you meet, so blast away. Grab the 2 warehouses worth of secondary loot, kill the guards by the docks and leave, even if you get spotted now, just make a dash for the open sea and get as far away from the island as possible until the mission finishes and you're done, $1,3m reward. And that's it, pretty simple heist, finale is made super easy by the sewage tunnel and the prep missions are already easy as piss
Why NY and not just NYC would be a unique, interesting, and fun FO5 setting
To start, this should be a single player game. If Bethesda/Obsidian/MS can make it so I can play with 1 or 2 friends, I want that but understand it's not that simple. So why it should be picked: First, NY has an amazing history when it comes to Pre-Revolution, Revolution, the Civil War, and beyond. Major events like the battle at Saratoga (which is considered the turning point of the Revolution), the 1980 Miracle on Ice, and Woodstock (along with a whole lot more) all took place in upstate NY. So the rich history of the area is ripe for pro American stylizing and propaganda that gives FO it's unique take on American Atom-punk. That along with more modern history of things like the Native Americans (The Oneidas) actually taking back their land and forming their own sovereign nation (basically they have their own gov. Pay no state taxes, and self govern with police, fire, and allow gambling which NY does not). So their modern government would not only be some great lore, but I honestly believe could be a basis for the main quest line. Things like their unique tribal leadership, philosophy, and gambling (hello 10 luck) could bring a very grey area to fallout that was kind of missed in FO3 + 4. Plus their mythology would make for a great weird scene that fallout has at least 1 of every game. Also, for those who don't know, upstate NY is very country with major cities pocketed about. (Utica, Albany, Syracuse, etc). So if you liked NV style of wandering the wastes, or 3s style of city wandering, we've got both. Also, we've got two mountains areas, one in the Adirondacks and the Catskills are the other. That said, one of the most important parts of fallout are the locations. Where can we go? For that I have a list: Major locations: Lake Placid Winter Olympics training facility - the winter olympics world be held in 2078 and if they still exist by then and to play into the game, LP could be the location of those games. Again, the miracle on ice where American Amateurs bested the Communist Russian Pros, was held there. The "Better dead than Red" sentiment would be full force. Not to mention one of a few great locations for a possible vault (80, in this case to house winter olympians). Plus, the weapons could be cool too. Hockey sticks, hockey skate blades on gloves, a goalie mask for armor, you name it. Cooperstown Baseball HOF - Now when you think Americana, Baseball is one of your first thoughts, don't lie. Cooperstown is baseball central and very pretty. Another great place for pro-american styles and fun gear like baseball base mines, softball helmets (because fuck you "A League of Their Own" style pro-baseball league in FO sounds awesome), and of course bats and baseball grenades. Also a baseball Vault (Vault 4, 5, 7, or 9). Not my idea, but in this vault, there's 32 teams of mens and 32 teams of womens baseball (or coed teams, idk), all of whom are pro players. Vault tec test is simple, winner gets food and drinks, loser gets steroid infused food and drink (but they don't know it has steroids obviously). The idea is, test how good at baseball people can be if given monster amounts of steroids for generations. I'll make a separate post about this in detail if desired. Canastota Boxing HOF - Another unique area for America. Canastota is pretty boring and empty, but for those of you old enough to remember Rocky when it came out, it basically revived Boxing as a major sport and also had a moment where America bested the Red Menace (Rocky IV). Maybe a spot for a vault or to learn unique unarmed moves. Pugilism Illustrated anyone? Albany - NYs capital and an easy big city area along the Hudson. A great location for corporate greed, governmental corruption, and side quests. Can't say it'll be the focal point of the game since its very near the eastern border of it, but a good location for exploring and lore. Buffalo/Niagara Falls - Ya ever gone over the falls in a barrel? Do ya want to? I think using Niagara Falls (which has an American and Canadian side, Canadas is the U-shaped famous one) as Fallouts first "Non-American" location would be fun. First, the falls are beautiful and are a major source of hydroelectric power. Second, in FO, America annexed canada, so it's technically still America! Third, right across the "border" are casinos! More gambling! Third and a half, it's another big city and buffalo is where the buffalo wing was invented (God bless buffalo wings). Besides the cool lore opportunity about the annexation and the city location, the falls could be a major location for the story if the main conflict was about powering the area, similar to NV. Syracuse - NYs (literal) center city. The Salt City as it was formally known is a big city with some great old and new style. Again, not much about the city to say, but a great opportunity for corporate BS. The main attraction would be the Syracuse Dome (formerly the Carrier Dome). Due to its location and style, it's perfect as a central trading hub for the major cities and people. Think of Great Green Jewel style, people living, bars, shops, etc. BUT the really interesting part is what's right next to the Dome. SUNY ESF (Environmental Science and Forestry). This college is special because (A. I went there) it has very unique programs and with some future tech thrown in, could be a great location for a Fallout 3 Harold or NV vault 22-esq quest. The college already does experiments with major chemicals, evolution (FEV anyone?) and breeding plants for unique purposes. Again, I have a really cool idea for this area, but that can be a different post. Fun fact, ESF is actually working to bring back the North America Chestnut that went (nearly) extinct! Also, some asshole releases the fruit flies the genetics lab work with every year and it sucks. NYC (Empire, 9/11 memorial, Statue of Liberty) - Yeah yeah, you can't have NY without the City, but frankly there's so much here to explore and deal with, I'd leave it to the pros to really do it justice. Turning Stone Casino - Gambling, a hotel/restaurants like in NV, and a good spot for the main quest line. Fort Stanwix - A real revolutionary war fort. HQ or major area for raiders. Safe, well protected and with plenty of history. Fort Drum and Griffis Air Force Base: Two major bases that could be packed with guns, nukes, and power armor. Heavily guarded by turrets, robots, and security gates. Main Quest: Without too much detail, I figure your character will be hired to figure out the future of NY. You'll be brought to the Turning Stone which is currently the HQ of the Oneida tribe. Your job would be to either work with the other tribes in the former Iroquois Confederation (Seneca, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida, Mohawk, and Tuscarora [added later]). (Quick note: in my AU, some time after the bombs fell, the IC came to power because of their knowledge of living off the land and attempted to rebuild society. After some time rebuilding and establishing a post-war society, the tribes do the thing all humans do and bicker. Around 2200 the IC broke apart but the tribes retained power in their areas. They fight, trade, yadda yadda but no one is in control of everything. Throughout your quest, it turns out that what is holding everyone back is a lack of power for things like lights and running water. Your job will be to determine where to get that power (Nuclear power plant in Oswego or the falls in Niagara?) And where to give it (one tribe? A few? Or all?). But that's not all, the tribes can't decide who should be in charge. One tribe wants to remain independent, don't help the outsiders and rebuild society in their image within NY, another wants to help others but would need to sacrifice their own people's safety and seclusion. Maybe another wants to be imperialist and expand their borders throughout America through way of force and fear while another agrees with taking land but wants it done through offers of protection for taxes. And each tribe has its own opinion on bringing the IC back together, staying separate, or taking over the tribes for themselves. It's up to you character to decide who to help. Do you work hard to try and bring all tribes together under one banner or choose a side and execute their will as a paid mercenary/ambassador? Other choices would be chaos by siding with raiders, or maybe a BOS path to take out all the tribes, idk, haven't thought it all out. Again, not a writer. Mechanics: So personally, I like the idea that if you choose to go with a single faction, there would a battle/war mechanic where you and an army (or alone if you really wanna try) take over and lay claim to areas similar to Nuka World where you fly the gangs flag. Nothing complicated, normal fallout fights, don't die and kill the leadehis troops to win. Karma is back. You will garner good or bad rep with each tribe depending on what you do. I'd like an armor system like in NV but I can live without it. There is an ending. Once you beat the game you can continue doing side quests for armoexperience/ammo but only for the tribes left in power. Occasional rebellions will rise up as random events that need to be put down. Settlements are limited. Like skyrim, but a plot and build. No need to build one everywhere and you don't even need to do it if you don't want to. Radio host? Gimme a Mr. New Vegas type guy. I don't want an eccentric 3-dog, I want a smoothed voiced person wishing me lady like luck. Also, smarter AI. Otherwise, typical FO mechanics. Weapons degrade, can upgrade weapons and armor, etc. Main problems with NY: No real borders to the south. Invisible walls would like be necessary which is stupid. Same to the East, but the Hudson could theoretically be used as a border if you put crazy strong mirelurks or something to kill the player if they tried to cross (or more invisible walls) Don't want to disrespect the tribes. This is an issue with using each tribe as a possible faction. You're bound to piss off or disrespect one. So it'll be a task to make sure it's as limited as possible. What to do with the city? It's a huge area that can be used for so much, but as a part of NY it's actually pretty seperated. It's a commercial hub now, but there's nothing there that would really be a reason to go down there. So do you make it one or do we just make it a glowing sea type area that's completely decimated from the bombs? That's my personal choice honestly, but it's a tough one to please as many as possible. Conclusion: NY is rad. I'll be taking questions as long as they do not involve Canadian trivia. Thank you.
MALL SKINCARE SCAM WRITEUP: Lionesse, because gems work like that
right so today I went to the mall for the first time since last february and I noticed a tiny little display for a skincare brand called lionesse. it was kind of in one of those enclaves built into the wall with glass in front if that makes sense? anyway I had never heard of the brand and the packaging looked expensive (note: not necessarily nice), so I looked it up. they CLAIM that their skincare is infused with gems, but like. gems aren’t gonna do anything for your skin? in addition to skincare, they also sell hot hair tools and products. I’m suspicious for a few reasons, which I’ll list below. 1) the prices are INSANE they’re legitimately more expensive than la mer or la prairie, but with none of the name recognition. they sell something described as a ‘jade eye wand’ that reminds me of a microcurrent device for $1,750. ALMOST HALF MY TUITION THIS TERM. by comparison, nuface sells a microcurrent device for fine lines all over the face for $150. and I’ve actually heard of nuface. what’s even worse is what they call their ‘new age syringe’. it’s nearly $1k on their site, but at least one reviewer said she purchased it for under $200. in this mercari listing you can see the nozzle is bare plastic— not very luxe in my book. why couldn’t they add some kind of massage component like many eye serums have? in addition, they have a $3K magnetic mask and a matching moisturizer for $1.5K. I can totally understand some beauty products being expensive for legit reasons. that limited edition hachiko brush from beautylish isn’t something I’d ever buy, but I see $80 in handpainted japanese craftsmanship as understandable. for the price of one full regime from Lionesse, however, you could have many, many appointments with a cosmetic dermatologist or a plastic surgeon. which leads to... 2) many of their products are supposedly anti aging we know that anti aging skincare is marked up even higher than regular skincare. someone in their 40s will have more disposable income for wrinkles than a teenager with hormonal acne— and wrinkles don’t go away on their own, as far as I know. there might be some truth to the fact that active ingredients for anti aging are more fragile and harder to formulate than other issues, but I still think the skincare industry takes advantage of womens’ insecurity over being older than 25 and therefore supposedly disposable to society. people are perfectly ready to drop big chunks of change on something that might make them look younger. lionesse is taking advantage of the fact that people are used to spending big bucks on anti aging to make their own even more expensive. every single one of the most expensive products (even though it’s all expensive, with some weirdly cheap products like a $20 body creme) claims to ‘lift’ or take care of your fine lines and wrinkles. one $1.5K serum promises to make your wrinkles disappear overnight. to me, no single cream is worth that much. just... see a plastic surgeon for non-invasive options. there’s still a huge around plastic surgery, despite the fact that many, many people have done it. I think there should be an even bigger stigma around selling less than an ounce of product for that much money. at least plastic surgeons are licensed. 3) the locations in at least 2 reviews the customers say they bought eye serum from a casino in las vegas (one mentioned the luxor). at least 2 reviewers mentioned purchasing it at malls, one of which was in new mexico. many of the packaging has instructions in french and english, which makes me think that they’re also selling in quebec (I live in maine so it’s literally right there). many, many of the reviews specifically mention salespeople, and impulse buys at vacation spots like new orleans, hawaii and (vivaaaaa) las vegas. 4) the reviews most products have no reviews. for the products that do have reviews, almost all of them are 5 stars with some 4 star reviews sprinkled in. the reviews seem different enough that different people must have written them. I actually do think 4/5 star reviews are real— due to the 1 2 star review I found. in this one review from january of this year, the reviewer says 3 important things. one, she bought it in hawaii. two, the salesman was pushy even though it was way too expensive. three, she doesn’t understand how the product is any better than olay or l’oreal. that review was also from january 2020, and the most recent one I found. the fact that there’s been NO new reviews on the site between then and now makes a lot of sense because people aren’t going on vacations right now where people typically like to go on vacation— or the places where lionesse stations itself. if most of their sales are in person, offline, they may have straight up not noticed the negative review. the positive reviews actually mirror the 2 star one perfectly. many of them mention salespeople (‘thanks to the nice young lady’ or ‘shout out to XX at XX mall’ etc), which to me shows that their marketing strategy relies heavily on in person salespeople. I have a lot of respect for salespeople because they usually know a lot more about the product than I do, and understand why you might go shopping elsewhere. I’ve even had salespeople at sephora whisper to me about a cheaper alternative I can find at ulta (lmao). however, I really think it’s a bad sign when a product can’t move itself without someone to speak for it. I can read about the moisturizing factors in a face cream, decide it sounds legit and purchase it. lionesse products can’t speak for themselves at that price point because there’s nothing about them that’s actually worth $400-1,500. SO, WHAT’S GOING ON? initially I thought lionesse might be an MLM, but I don’t actually think that’s true considering an MLM requires the downline to contact people they know in person. there’s 3 possibilities. 1) lionesse is a legit business with a smart business strategy (I think selling to tourists is actually a really smart idea... if you’re not a scammer) that makes superior products, whose worst crime is marking up their products astronomically (name a beauty brand that doesn’t). 2) lionesse manufactures average skincare, marks it up super high and has unaware salespeople who believe the product is genuinely worth that much money sell it. 3a) lionesse is repackaging cheaper skincare (like l’oreal) in nice looking packaging behind the scenes and having their aware or unaware salespeople shill it 3b) the salespeople themselves are 100% complicit and more than salespeople. they themselves repackage regularly priced skincare and mark it up. in either scenario, whenever they’re found out to be scammers they shut that location down. that’s why all their locations are temporary-ish— like mall kiosks and casino booths (?? no idea but let’s assume they’re renting). what are your thoughts? I remember reading about a similar scam where a mall salesperson gave a sample of a much more luxe product, but the actual product was much cheaper. I couldn’t find the post but a lot of commenters were PISSED after someone posted their haul on the main SCA sub. the important thing to mention is that I don’t think anyone who buys lionesse is necessarily stupid— we can all easily get sucked in, especially when we’re away from home in an unfamiliar environment. I saw a lot of people calling the woman who posted that stupid, or a sucker, which is really mean in my eyes. she already dumped $2.5K on a scam, do you really need to shit on her too? I personally think the truth is somewhere between 2 and 3– they’re buying a cheap base, mixing a miniscule amount of diamond/turd powder in, and spending slightly more on packaging. I do think that the salespeople may be aware on some level that this is almost certainly a scam, but my best guess is they range from ‘naive’ to ‘super jaded but wants the money’. do you have experience with this brand or similar ones? do you have a location near you? what’s your friendly local mall skincare scam?
CDPRs glitches/bugs are a very VERY minor problem in Cyberpunk. These problems are bigger:
60 hours into cyberpunk and probably won't finish the game. No its not because of the bUgS Bro I played skyrim since it was released I played New Vegas like 20 times I played Witcher 3 since the first month of its release Like the bugs in New Vegas give the game a charm to this day. Its the content IN THE GAME. It got to the point where if I want to beat the game I just have to follow the remaining quest markers again and again. But the side jobs all have the same feel we are used to in a GTA world. Walking around the city as you do the side content, and there is no narrative to V's actions. At least in GTA each of your characters has an actual lifestyle, and a relationship with where they are from. Walking around in Night City, as someone with 50 street cred, and there's no recognition of who you are or what you have accomplished. It doesnt have to offer some grand narrative, but anything that shows consequence and progression of your actions would be fantastic. The closest thing to this is going to each new "bad guy hang out" and if you walk into their territory they try and kill you. Which is so strange because this happens from the beginning of the game, no matter what. Even as regular civilians walk among the bad guys aimlessly, there is no reaction, but the game triggers to make the bad guys attack without recognition and with impunity when you accidentally look at them. Npcs and cars travel on rails, and if there is an item blocking the path, the game stops. You'd expect that even meandering around the city that your character V would have more relationship with the city, even pre-programmed lines to say here and there. Geralt had his famous COME HERE U PIECE OF FILTH comments when fighting monsters, or commenting on the weather. For as much content in the city, the alleyways, rooftops, random streets, sewers, and the badlands, there seems to be a surprising lack of interest in finding content here. There are SOME exceptions but take that with a grain of salt: There was a side gig where I was supposed to save a ripperdoc who was being forced to do work on gang members, another with a father and son duo you can kill who are responsible for trafficking children, or another infiltrating a subterranean casino to assassinate a bad guy - and none of these are varied based on a life path. They are static triggers on a map you select and travel to. But each of these interactions are 5-7 minutes long, one off interactions, and have no consequence or rabbit hole in the world of Cyberpunk. Not even a quarter of Skyrim or New Vegas when in those games, you meet an NPC with a name and you just might get a quest that lasts 3-5 hours. People think that the main weakness in the game are the bugs, but fortunately for CDPR, the distraction of bugs and glitches and a failed launch QC-wise, are the things that people are thinking about right now. Had the game been 2 months more polished on the QC side, it is still an empty game IN COMPARISON to the detail that exists in the game. The devs exhausted themselves in the world design, and in the style of the game. If they had done as much for AI, organic chemistry in the world, and in a divergent narrative for each life path, then it may have been an 8 out of 10. Some of the things that would enhance the experience would be a set of side quests directly for corpo, street kid, and nomad. Something that in the world after the prologue that would put you on side quests that can only be accomplished by those life paths: Street kid gets a narrative that follows the consequences of coming BACK to Night City. The game opens up as Stret Kid that V is back in Night City after leaving another city when things fail. There could be an entire 10 hour narrative directly with dealing with whatever that meant, but nope. Youre back in Night City. The fixers and big players all know you, and you're automatically on everyone's good graces with everyone except Rogue, but just pay her. That'll work. Corpo could exist in the the remnants of the corporate wars. A stand off between hostile CEOs and your character, or even a goofy world that exists where your company is failing and you have to achieve clout in a incredibly self gratifying cyberpunk world, kinda like a certain side quest where you are helping an inmate execute himself. Nomad could be a deep dive into clans and the politics of badlands groups from clans like Panams, to the Raffins, but apparently only 1 clan is alive in the Badlands. But thats just part part of the list of problems. The rest exists in the pre-programmed way that stealth and actual gameplay works. Stealth is ridiculously broken with no tension. Distract an enemy, or memory wipe and you can get by anything. Turn off the camera, ping for enemy locations. Is it just me, or do all those flashy YouTube videos where players are 1 shotting their way through scanner hustles with a silenced pistol all look just like taking down outposts and fortresses in Farcry? It looks neat, but its a shooter at that point, not even reminiscent of an RPG. For as much as people mock The Last of Us 2, its stealth, world building, and tension you feel when you go through abandoned buildings makes you feel human, scared, and cause you to constantly count your ammunition. You are constantly crawling, or stopping, or throwing bottles, or other shit as you go around every corner and open every door. Overall, these are just a couple shortcomings of this game, minus the issues I have on a ps4 pro. Bugs are not my issue. Its the incomplete gameplay therein and the emptiness of this world that is not an RPG.
We're all familiar with the Hotline Miami's, Hollow Knight's, and Celeste's of the world. These are some of the indie games that hit the big time. Of course, for every one of these games, there's 100 other indie games that have been glossed over, relegated to a spot in a digital store few people will ever find themselves in. I wanted to bring attention to some of these lesser known indie games. I'm going to order them according to Metacritic Critic Ratings. Some of the games at the bottom have pretty low critic ratings. I personally disagree with the low scores of these games, but it's only fair that you hear from more than just me. Keep in mind that games with only one or two User Ratings on Metacritic will not show the score. A game needs at least three User Ratings on Metacritic before the score will be shown. This is not the case for Critic Reviews. Price will contain the U.S. PlayStation Store link to the game. 1. Hayfever
Description: Hayfever is a precision platformer that revolves around a mailman propelling himself using a number of different allergens that act as power-ups. A lot of the platforming is aerial and typically has you catching allergens mid-air to perform maneuvers in quick succession. It's not an easy game by any means, but it has oddly relaxing music to accompany the rather intense platforming. There are also letters to collect in each level to steepen the challenge and some secrets to discover too. It takes an hour or so to get used to the aerial platforming, and this is one of the few 2D platformers played better with the analog stick rather than the D-Pad. But letters that seemed unattainable to me at the beginning of the game became much simpler by the end, as I had mastered the controls and physics of the game. I don't expect everyone to love this game, but I have to agree with the one other guy who played it that gave it a 9/10. After putting 25+ hours into it, I am still eager to replay it soon.
Completion Time: ~8 Hours
Extra Content: It'll take another 8 hours or so to collect all the letters and probably about 6 hours or so to beat the Hard World, which features an additional 28 remixed levels. There are also secrets to uncover, but they don't net any in game progress and only work towards your trophy completion. Finding these secrets will probably vary more in time because they are hidden, but expect them to take a few hours to find. Just to clarify, letters are an expanded test of your platforming skills and are all in clear view of the screen, while secrets are a test of your observation skills and take a little more digging to find. The platinum trophy is a fair and rewarding challenge that took me about 25-30 hours to get.
Description: Valfaris is one of the best run & gun games I've ever played. You play as Prince Therion who returns to his home planet of Valfaris on a quest to kill his father. It's themed around a fictional planet and has a gross alien vibe coupled with heavy metal music. The music doesn't override the other audio in the game, and it does a nice job of upping the ante when you're fighting a boss – of which there are many. You're equipped with a primary gun, a more powerful mana-based gun, a sword, and a shield that can block with mana or parry. There are a number of weapons to acquire throughout the game, and the guns in particular do a great job of feeling different. You’re able to upgrade your weapons with Blood Metals. Some Blood Metals are found in plain sight, others are rewarded for defeating a tough enemy, and some are given for going off the beaten path. These upgrades typically just up the firepower but will sometimes introduce a secondary move to your weapon. There are checkpoints every two minutes or so, and most bosses will have a checkpoint just before them (only the weaker bosses come after a gauntlet of enemies). The game is a little hard at points, but overall it strikes a nice balance of feeling accomplished for overcoming the challenges without getting overly frustrating.
Completion Time: ~8 Hours
Extra Content: There are a few secrets to find throughout the game that are off the beaten path, though I was able to find 2/3 of them on my first playthrough. I found all but one weapon as well. The replayability comes from New Game+, which allows you to take all your upgraded weapons into a harder version of the game. Since the weapons all function a bit differently, this can be lots of fun. Getting the platinum trophy is somewhat difficult.
Description: The premise of the game is a fusion of side scrollers and oldschool fixed screens that teleport you to the opposite side of the screen when you pass through one side - think Pac-Man, arcade Mario Bros., or Balloon Fight. You will find obstacles in your path that are impenetrable in a typical side scroller, but can be overcome by holding a button to turn the screen into a fixed screen that allows you to pass through one side and out through the other end. This is a totally unique take on a puzzle platformer I haven't seen before, and all five worlds bring something new to the table. For example, World 2 will flip you upside down when you pass through a screen, allowing new types of challenges as a result. There's more emphasis on the puzzle elements than the platforming.
Completion Time: ~2 Hours
Extra Content: There is a New Game+, but from what I could tell from the beginning it wasn't a whole lot different. Still, there's a trophy for completing New Game+ and some other fun trophies. Unfortunately, like many early generation indie games, this one has no platinum trophy.
Description: This game revolves around using two square characters who fling themselves from one end of the room to the other to reach an exit. You must position yourself in such a way that you use each character's body to get around the level. Each world introduces a new mechanic to keep things fresh. The whole game is played only using the two analog sticks (the d-pad and face buttons work, but the two analog sticks are best, in my opinion). It can also be played in local co-op, however with how often you have to fling yourself around, coordinating the correct movements to the other player would be exhausting, and it is easier to experiment yourself.
Completion Time: ~3.5 Hours
Extra Content: There's really no extra content, but $4 for what's almost a 4 hour game isn't bad. There is an easy platinum trophy however.
Description: This is actually a sequel to the Steam exclusive Horizon Shift, which sports a different aesthetic and isn’t quite as good from what I’ve read. Horizon Shift ’81 mimics the look of a fixed screen shoot ‘em up from the early 1980s but comes with a few twists of its own. Your ship is positioned in the middle of the screen on a horizontal line rather than the bottom, and you have to flip between sides to deal with enemies coming from both the top and the bottom. The line can be broken in different places – leaving a gap where you can fall to your death – by asteroids and certain projectiles. This is where the expanded moveset comes into play: you can jump between gaps and also over enemies who attach themselves to the line. Enemies on the line can also be taken out with a horizontal shield bash that regenerates after a few seconds. There is a boss after every five stages, some of which will actually bring the line down to the bottom of the screen, while others retain it in the middle. Horizon Shift ’81 has a number of customizable settings that change everything from the aesthetics, to the difficulty, to the checkpoint/lives system, to the speed of the game, and more. The two main modes are a choice between three lives with a checkpoint before and after every boss, or a checkpoint at the beginning of every level but only one life.
Completion Time: ~3.5 Hours (Normal Mode on Arcade Style)
Extra Content: There are a number of ways to customize your future playthroughs, and there’s an unlockable boss rush mode after finishing the game. The few trophies are relatively easy to obtain. There is no platinum trophy for this game.
Description: Daggerhood's main hook is the use of its sword teleportation mechanic. You throw your sword with a button, and you press the same button again to teleport to where the sword is. While this is a mechanic that has been seen in some Metroidvanias, I haven't seen a tight, linear 2D platformer make use of this mechanic before. Each level has a number of collectibles and some small side sections as well, but for the most part the path to the finish is clear - it's just the execution that's the tricky part. Add in teleportation portals to make things even trickier.
Completion Time: ~2.5 Hours
Extra Content: As this is a Ratalaika Games published game, the platinum trophy only takes about 1-1.5 hours to achieve. You can get it well before you even finish the game, which is a shame because the game had all the makings for a fun platinum trophy. There are tons of collectibles in each level, and each level records your time. So there is a lot here to extend to the playtime.
Description: Usually with Metroidvanias, I expect a long, difficult game that's difficult to navigate. Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight is a counter to those ideas while still maintaining the exploratory nature of the sub-genre. The plot is pretty simple and doesn't feature a ton of story, but there are a few NPCs you talk to throughout your quest. The combat is also fairly simple, but the boss fights you engage in are all great. Without much weapon customization, it's stripped to the basics of dodging enemy attacks while trying to get a hit in. It makes for a game that's easy to get into and instantly start enjoying. All of the areas are visually appealing, some more than others, and each of them lasts shorter than you'd expect. The game is only around 3-5 hours, but it feels like you've played so much more in that time. Some games only really start to take off by the time this game finishes.
Completion Time: ~4 Hours
Extra Content: Getting 100% map completion should only take an hour or two of cleanup. I did miss an optional boss on my first playthrough. There are also items to discover, and the trophies give fun challenges to extend the life of the game. Unfortunately there is no platinum trophy for this game. One cool thing I liked was that beating a boss without getting hit at all gives you a useful item. It also features New Game+, allowing you to carry over most of your items, making the game more difficult, and changing up enemy placement.
Description: Ultra Hat Dimension follows Bea through a series of rooms in a palace on a quest to undo the magical spell that has made the mythical Spluff creatures want to attack one another. There is a little bit of backstory via one sentence thoughts from Bea in between levels, but nothing major here. The gameplay revolves equipping four different types of hats and using them to evade or push Spluffs around to retrieve the key and reach the door. Each Spluff dons one of four different hats which effects their behavior towards other Spluffs and you. You will be punched one tile back by every Spluff unless you’re wearing the same hat as the Spluff. Spluffs interact with one another differently depending on what hat they’re wearing in a rock, paper, scissors kind of way – they may punch a Spluff back one space, get into a scuffle that allows you to get close to them without wearing a hat, or they may temporarily disable them in a way that allows you to access the space the Spluff consumes within eight moves. There are undo and reset buttons included that allow you to quickly rewind mistakes. There are some clever puzzles accompanied by catchy tunes and a charming pixel art aesthetic. The difficulty is about average.
Completion Time: ~3 Hours
Extra Content: Since this is published by Ratalaika Games, getting the platinum trophy can be obtained after only clearing 2/3 of the levels. There are a few custom maps on the PC version of the game but no additional content on consoles.
Description: Remothered: Tormented Fathers feels very old school in its design philosophy - no weapons outside a few self defense items and distraction items. You go back and forth in the mansion and have to learn the layout and where things are to proceed. You have to manually select the key item from your inventory to use on triggers (but a key icon is still shown to guide you a little). The sounds in this game do a great job of evoking tension, and I appreciate that the stalkers don’t seem to teleport, so if you can get away from them, you’ve earned your freedom for awhile. This is the first game in a loosely connected trilogy, with the second one due later this year.
Completion Time: ~6 Hours
Extra Content: There are some collectibles you can go back for, but not a whole beyond that. Unfortunately there is no platinum trophy for this game, and you'll probably get most of the trophies - if not all, except the collectibles one - on your first playthrough.
Description: Reverie is a mix between Zelda’s gameplay, Earthbound’s aesthetic and humor, and a New Zealand folktale – the legend of Maui and the Giant Fish. Instead of the more traditional sword and shield style fantasy, Reverie instead opts for items and tools a modern boy is more likely to find in his possession, like a cricket bat, a yoyo, and a nerf gun. Similarly, the first dungeon is grandpa’s basement, where you’ll square off against a giant hedgehog and a tumble dryer. That said, the game does get more fantastical with the last two locations, particularly the last one. It’s a relatively easy game overall, though the fourth and especially fifth dungeon offer up a moderate challenge. The indie scene has produced a lot of Zelda-like games in recent years, but this is the only one I know of that isn’t your standard medieval fantasy.
Completion Time: ~5 Hours
Extra Content: There are feathers to collect, mini games to play, and a combat focused bonus dungeon to beat. That said, a lot of this stuff is easy to stumble upon in the main quest, so you’re probably looking at about two or three hours’ worth of content after beating the game to complete everything and get the platinum trophy.
Description: Inertial Drift's distinguishing characteristic is its employment of the right analog stick for drifting. This takes a little getting used to, but it feels great once you get the hang of it, creating some exhilarating moments when perfecting corner turns. The game has 10 unique tracks + 10 reversed tracks, 16 vehicles, and four separate story arcs. Each story arc is only a couple of hours long and features a different protagonist with a different vehicle. Since you’ll be racing on the same track a few times, there are a few gameplay variations that differ from just reaching the finish line at the end, such as racking up a certain number of points that are acquired through longer drift times and other means. There's quite a bit of dialogue between races, and in the races themselves characters will frequently dish out positive commentary on your performance in the form of text in the top left hand corner of the screen. The game's aesthetics are a fusion of anime and synthwave. I've heard many fans liken the game to the manga Initial D, though I'm unfamiliar with that series myself.
Completion Time: ~3 Hours (for 1/4 Story Arcs)
Extra Content: There are a number of different modes including a Story Mode, Challenge Mode, Grand Prix Mode, Arcade Mode, two player Split-Screen, and Online, as well as a Tutorial. Completion of challenges in Challenge Mode allows you to unlock new vehicles for the other non-Story Modes. Grand Prix Mode allows you to race using different characters/vehicles through a connected set of challenges, while Arcade Mode is for one-off races. I wouldn't recommend this game for online play as the user-base is pretty small (hence it being overlooked) and you're unlikely to find a match. Getting the platinum trophy is fairly difficult.
Description: This is an action platformer that emulates arcade games from the latter half of the 1980s, but it is probably most reminiscent of Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts. The creator, Locomalito, states that the soundtrack uses the true arcade sound of the YM2203 chip. The game is hard, but the checkpoints are never more than a minute or two apart, and the lives' system/continue system has no penalties outside of locking you out of trophies. This is a very boss dense game - in the ~4 hour run-time it takes to complete the game, you fight 19 bosses. The handful of weapons and items you pick up helps lend variety to the combat, and no two boss fights feel the same.
Completion Time: ~4 Hours
Extra Content: The game has two endings. Most players will get the bad ending the first time around and be locked out of the final stage (which is the longest stage in the game). You do have to play through the game again to get the good ending, but you'll likely do it in half the time. If you want to see all the major content on your first go around, I recommend looking up how to get the good ending before you play the game. As far as trophies are concerned, the platinum trophy is very difficult to obtain. If you like an extreme challenge, this one's for you.
Description: Pato Box follows an anthropomorphic duck boxer on an adventure through a stylistic noir comic book world. “Pato” is a Spanish word that translates to “Duck” in English (the game was developed by a Mexican studio). The boss fights are heavily inspired by Punch-Out’s gameplay, but there are levels outside of these fights to help differentiate it. Most of the levels can be selected in any order you choose and typically serve as a leadup to the boss fight. Bosses are usually introduced by a cutscene followed by some dialogue taunting Pato Box. The levels play entirely differently from the fights, but the themes of the level match those of the bosses. The levels will employ various elements of evasion, stealth, exploration, and a few time-based mini-games. The casino level, for example, will have you walk around the casino looking for chips and punching the slot machines to earn enough to pay entrance to the fight, while the food factory has you evading stompers, sawblades, and butcher knives as you work your way through the level. There are variety of things to find throughout the levels: tokens for decorations in Pato Box’s room, backstory on the boss of the level and the world, and tips on how to win the upcoming fight. The fights themselves lock Pato Box in the middle of the screen, allowing you to block, juke left or right, and perform a low or high jab to the left or right. The game foregoes a HUD in favor of a visual representation of your health via scars on your body, which I thought was a nice touch. While the levels and bosses play pretty differently from each other, they’re weaved together by a dark and intriguing story that follows Pato Box’s quest for retribution against an evil corporation.
Completion Time: ~7 Hours
Extra Content: There’s an Arcade Mode that lets you replay boss fights and some collectibles to find in the main campaign. The trophies are very difficult, and many ask you to beat a boss without taking a single hit.
Description: The Count Lucanor’s story is very fairy tale-esque – more like a classic fairy tale as it can be pretty dark and grotesque at times. On his 10th birthday, Hans chooses to leave his mother in a quest for wealth. After some walking and conversation with NPCs you find along the way, you stumble upon a large mansion and find that the count of this mansion is looking to pass his wealth onto an heir who can prove himself worthy – “worthy” in this case being the one who can figure out the count’s name. From here, you are tasked with adventuring through the mansion and solving environmental puzzles in a nonlinear way to acquire the letters that spell the count’s name. There is a survival horror element to the game, as you are unable to attack the enemies in the mansion and instead must crawl under tables and find other ways around them. You can place candles around the mansion to light it up to help you better evade enemies, but your usage is limited (though you can find more).
Completion Time: ~4 Hours
Extra Content: There are five different endings and some puzzles/rooms you don’t even have to do. This could double your playtime – maybe even more if you don’t use a guide. The platinum trophy requires every ending and a few other things but is pretty easy to get if you use a guide.
Description: The Bunker is an FMV point & click adventure, meaning it features real actors and environments just like a live action movie. Many of the actors involved have been in high profile movies/TV shows as well, including The Hobbit, Game of Thrones, Star Wars, and Penny Dreadful. The game takes place in a fallout shelter and follows the last survivor as he tries to find a way outside following the death of his mother, after living 30+ years in the bunker. The gameplay has you solving puzzles and finding ways to proceed to the next area. The story is the focal point of the game though, and it frequently switches between the past and the present to tell its story. There’s a good juxtaposition between the lively past and the lonely present that makes you question how the protagonist ended up as the last survivor. There’s only one narrative choice to make in the game, and it comes at the very end. The game also works in handheld mode with touchscreen functionality if you'd prefer to play it that way.
Completion Time: ~2. Hour Completion Time*
Extra Content: You can replay the game and try to find all the collectibles. Most of them give more background on the story. You can trigger the ending you did not choose the first time around by simply reloading the last checkpoint, so there is no need to play through the whole game again to unlock it. Getting the platinum trophy is fairly easy.
Description: A Tale of Paper takes direct inspiration from Little Nightmares, sporting the same sideview camera angle and minimalist narrative. It’s a little less creepy and has the interesting twist of transforming into a variety of different origamis on the fly: from a little alien creature, to a frog, to a ball, to a paper airplane, etc., all with the push of a button. You’ll use a combination of different origami shapes to overcome the obstacles in the area, and you’ll be accompanied by some gorgeous sceneries in the process. The gameplay is pretty easy in both its platforming and puzzles, making it an easygoing, movie-esque kind of game. While the story is minimalist, it results in a satisfying conclusion, and it really feels like you’ve been through quite a journey even with the short runtime. The game evokes the feeling of being a tiny specimen in a larger-than-life world – Toy Story 2 is probably the most apt comparison I can make. Outside of Little Nightmares, I haven’t played another game quite like this.
Completion Time: ~1.5 Hours
Extra Content: I got seven of the eight origami collectibles in my first run-through. The trophies also only offer a few extra things to do, but I’d recommend reading the list of trophies before you play the game if you want to get the relatively easy platinum trophy.
Description: If you liked Detroit: Become Human or Until Dawn, Late Shift will be right up your alley. This game is a bit different from both those titles in that it's an FMV, with the gameplay solely consisting of the choices you make. You receive prompts at key moments in the story on what you want your character to do next, and this effects the outcome of the game. It plays more like Black Mirror's Bandersnatch, though this game came before it. The story follows an everyman who gets tangled up in London's criminal underground just as a result of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Completion Time: ~1.5 Hour Completion Time*
Extra Content: There are 180 choice points and 7 different endings. There is a platinum trophy, and I only got 4 out of 21 of the trophies on my first playthrough. There are a number of different routes to take with the game.
Description: SINNER: Sacrifice for Redemption is a Soulslike boss rush - there are no levels and only small area before each boss to practice your moves. There are eight bosses, the first seven allowing you to fight in any order, each representing the seven deadly sins. You are equipped with everything the game has to offer from the beginning (except for the New Game+ weapon they give you), and instead of becoming more powerful, you gradually lose things with each boss you defeat, hence the “sacrifice” in the title. It’s like a reverse RPG. Each boss has a different sacrifice associated to it – one may deplete your throwing items’ usage, while another will deplete your health and stamina. Picking the best order to fight them in adds a little strategic thinking to the game, as you may be more dependent on your large health and stamina bar more than your throwing items’ usage, for example. The game is fairly difficult, so your victories over each boss feel very gratifying when they do come.
Completion Time: ~5 Hours
Extra Content: There is New Game+ that offers you an additional weapon. The trophies task you with a few things you have to pull off in battles, and the platinum trophy is pretty easy to obtain.
Description: Verlet Swing’s aesthetic is as intriguing as its gameplay: you are tasked with grappling and swinging yourself across these vaporwave styled levels without hitting anything. The levels are all very short, but you’re likely to play many levels dozens of times before even finishing it… just to get a 1/4 rank. The ranking system is actually very cool, in that it encourages you to find alternative paths or sometimes just building up more momentum to get to the end faster. Most levels do seem to have a set path, but at the same time, with the proper grappling of the mechanics, you can forge your own, which is a game in itself.
Completion Time: ~7 Hours
Extra Content: There’s an in game challenge menu that mostly recycles a lot of the base game content – though there’s a particularly funny one that switches the perspective to third person to play as a knockoff Spiderman. You can also go back and try to get the best possible time for each level. Getting the platinum trophy is extremely hard and I believe is at 0.1% completion.
Description: Neon Drive is a challenging rhythm game with a synthwave aesthetic and appropriately matching music. The objective of the game is to evade the obstacles coming at you by transitioning between four lanes at the right moment using either two of the face buttons, D-Pad, or shoulder buttons. Personally I found the shoulder buttons worked best. The game will occasionally transform you into other vehicles that mix the gameplay up a bit - one notable example is when you turn into a plane and transition between eight lanes in a 360 degree orientation. There are only eight levels that are all about three minutes in length if you were to beat them with no deaths, with two checkpoints and two health points that regenerate between checkpoints. While this all sounds very generous, most of these levels will still take you dozens of tries, though the life reset is almost immediate so you can get back into the action right away.
Completion Time: ~3 Hours
Extra Content: There are two harder difficulties, an endurance mode that sees how long you can go without dying, a free run mode that allows you to play through the game without reset (only unlocked after beating each level), and online leaderboards. The trophies are very hard to get, and there is no platinum trophy.
Conclusion My top 5 on the list in order would be the following: (1.) Hayfever, (2.) Valfaris, (3.) Cursed Castilla: (Maldita Castilla EX), (4.) Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight, and (5.) Bleep Bloop. Have you played any of these games? What are some other overlooked single player indie games? If you’re looking for more indie games to play, see my post here:
Jan/3/2021 news: __ Top-10 anti corruption charges of 2020 __ POW & search __ Russian aid __ Refugees return __ Protecting the church __ Artsakh's international recognition __ Oil & gas news __ Chess & soccer events __ Guinness World Record __ Importing more Iranian products __ Syunik borders __
Your 7-minute Sunday report in 1743 words.
10 notable anti-corruption cases in 2020
10) SIS concluded the investigation of former president Serj Sargsyan's alleged embezzlement of ֏500 million in agricultural subsidies in 2013. Serj appeared in court as a defendant in February. The case continues. 9) ex-HHK MP and ex-Soccer Federation Chief Ruben Hayrapetyan (oligarch Nemets Rubo) was charged with large-scale embezzlement. In February, he was charged with embezzling $1.5 million-worth lands belonging to the Soccer Federation. (he was earlier implicated in the case about organizing the kidnapping, extortion, and torturing of a man who allegedly stole from his restaurant) 8) ex-Yerevan Mayor and Transport Minister HHK Gagik Beglaryan was charged with embezzling ֏230 million in state property. He was also interrogated as part of a ֏23 billion embezzlement in the North-South highway construction project. His brother is implicated in a ֏85 million embezzlement case. 7) ex-Culture Minister Hasmik Poghosyan (wanted) and ex Israel Ambassador Armen Smbatyan (paid a bail) are charged with using an offshore scheme to embezzle the state property. 6) Serj Sargsyan's brother Alexander was a defendant in the case of the 14 stolen paintings by Martiros Saryan. Pashinyan announced that Alexander's $30 million bank account was frozen. Alexander agreed to return the funds to state coffers. $26 million was recovered. $7.5 million was recovered as part of Martiros Saryan's painting case. Another $19 million was recovered -- or as he says, "donated" -- for the army modernization. 5) Powerful Churchman Archbishop Kchoyan (Bentley guy) was charged as part of an investigation of the forceful appropriation of another businessman's property by using an offshore firm, which was run by several individuals, including the churchman and allegedly the former Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan. More on that here. 4) Felony case was launched over the purchase of $42 million in weapons that turned out to be dysfunctional. Pashinyan mentioned this on several occasions, blaming the former regime for "wasting resources instead of developing the army." More recently, Pashinyan criticized General Movses "Mosi" Hakobyan, saying the waste took place under his administration. 3) Serj Sargsyan's chief bodyguard Vachagan Ghazaryan and his alleged accomplices had their felony tax-evasion charges dropped after compensating ֏3 billion ($6.3 million) to state coffers. 2) Serj's son-in-law Mikael Minasyan (Povar Ishik) was charged by IRS in March after the "revelation of an unprecedented level of corruption in modern Armenian history". Minasyan is accused of illegal enrichment. The investigation continues. Minasyan is residing in Russia, which won't extradite him due to close connections. Details on Mishik's case here, here, here, here (laptop recovered with 9000 files), here, here, here, here, maybe here, definitely here, here, here, 1) BHK leader Gagik Tsarukyan was charged with organizing an election fraud during 2017 and financial crimes by his casino Shangri La. The investigation began in late 2019 after a construction firm, with ties to Tsarukyan, paid a bribe to a Yerevan official in an unrelated incident. Tsarukyan likely learned about the pending charges against him and launched a major opposition campaign against Pashinyan, to then frame his charges as "political persecution" for being critical to the government. https://www.civilnet.am/news/2021/01/03/2020-ի-10-քրեական-գործերը/414983 https://www.evnreport.com/politics/the-political-rise-and-fall-of-tycoon-gagik-tsarukyan
Armenia will import 2250 types of products from Iran instead of Turkey, amid the 6-month ban on Turkish product imports. "This will be a good opportunity for Iranian producers. In the next step, [Armenia] will supply its required raw materials from Iran," said the chief of the Iranian trade agency. The govt had earlier met Chinese representatives to discuss the replacement of other Turkish items with Chinese ones. https://en.mehrnews.com/news/167965/Armenia-to-import-2-250-goods-from-Iran-instead-of-Turkey
border "demarcation" process continues in Syunik
The process to install Armenian and Azeri troops continues on the new borders between Armenia and Azerbaijan, in the Syunik province. The border was formerly Syunik (Armenia) - Qashatag (formerly Artsakh). Syunik's Shurnukh and Vorotan were built on the immediate internationally-recognized border, and some of them were on the Azeri side. As a result, a dozen buildings will go under Azeri control. Shurnukh village mayor complained about losing several houses and Azeris being too close. Syunik governor said border guards have been installed in areas surrounding Shurnukh. Russian and Armenian guards are placed in certain parts of this 21 km border. https://factor.am/325886.html
European Court for Human Rights has approved a petition by Armenia to implement emergency measures to require Azerbaijan to share information about the conditions of 23 POWs. "So far, such petitions were approved for 80 POWs, 18 of whom have already returned home," said Armenia's representative in Court. Armenia's HR Ombudsman Tatoyan criticized Aliyev for calling Armenian POW soldiers "terrorists" and for keeping them arrested, which delays the swap process. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039433.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039480.html
New Years Eve memorial concert in Yerablur Pantheon:
... in the Fizuli region that went under Azeri control during the war. Azeri prosecutors launched an investigation. In turns out, some Azeri civilians visit these areas without allowing the sappers to clear the areas from landmines first. So far, 10 Azeris have died or received injuries from such explosions after the ceasefire. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039473.html
They built the second rapid-deployment modular mini-town in Getavan, after finishing one in Stepanakert earlier. Another one will be built in Berdashen this month. The blocs will house 300 peacekeepers. They will have access to various convenience shops. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039452.html
Russian humanitarian aid in Artsakh
Russia sent 5,000 m2 glass for window replacement, 70 tons of metal parts, 34000 bedding items, to Martuni and Martakert cities. Earlier they sent 20 mobile electricity generators to help the areas that were cut off from the main electric grid. Russian doctors have so far treated 1044 Artsakh residents with various complaints. There are medical teams that travel in rural areas to provide care, including mental health services. The doctors received New Year's gifts from the medical administrator Oleg Bagayev. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039453.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039463.html
Ara Ghazaryan from Los Angeles built the world's smallest chess and made it into the Guinness World Records book. It's 8x8 millimeter. "Ara Ghazaryan is an Armenian American artist who uses jewelry to express his art and formerly held this record title. The chess board itself is made from 18 k yellow and white gold with Armenian apricot wood and rests on a frame made of platinum, 18 k yellow gold, rubies, and diamonds. The figures measure in height from 1 mm for the pawns to 2.4 mm for the kings." Photo: https://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/world-records/78603-smallest-handmade-chess-set https://factor.am/325695.html
The All Armenia Fund has transported 600 Artsakh children and their parents, residing in various provinces of Armenia, to watch performances in Yerevan's Tumanyan Puppet theater. Santa, Dzyunanush, and the Elves surprised the children with gifts in the end. The Foundation will help thousands of children by the end of January. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039451.html
Cyberpunk Expansion Theory (SPOILERS FOR ALL ENDINGS)
After beating the game I became curious of where they would go with the expansions, all three of the main endings put V in very different locations and I wondered where they would go with future content (Assuming the DLC's are post-game and in new locations). This made me think that they could perhaps make 3 Expansions that mirror the beginning lifepaths and bring V to a new location post game. Expansion 1 - Nomad/The Star Ending: This ending sees V, along with the Aldecaldos venture towards Arizona, as they flee from Arasaka and seek a cure for V's illness. I feel this is a perfect setup for a expansion set in Arizona revolving around the wasteland and Nomad Tribes. Expansion 2 - Streetkid/The Sun Ending: In this ending you last see V, about to commit the heist of a lifetime, robbing the space casino known as The Crystal Palace. This space station is very large and would make an excellent setting for an expansion pack. Expansion 3 - Corpo/The Devil Ending: This ending brings V to a Arasaka space station where he/she are given six months to live after the removal of the Biochip, V can then choose to either return to Night City or get turned to engram so his/her consciousness can potentially be uploaded into a new host body. If V chooses to return to Night City he/she will get a call from Hanako offering him/her a job with Arasaka. V taking this offer could turn into an excellent expansion where he/she works with Arasaka in a new location (Potentially Japan?)
So I've managed to develop a pretty decent solo strat for the heist. Today I managed to complete 2 heists. The first one I did with three of my friends and it was an excruciating chore. We kept getting spotted in the first few sections of the map and we had to restart about 15 times before just three of us made it out with just 2 million (to be shared among 4 people mind you). All in all pretty bad, would not recommend. But I didn't give up after that and tried a second heist, this time solo. To give you a quick rundown of what I would recommend to do: -In the recon mission you have to do in prep for every heist i discovered a drainage tunnel in the bay where the mansion is located. Just jump into the water and swim to said bay and dive down to the tunnel and it will be automatically set as a possible infiltration point. This may take a while but you only have to do it once. After that it will be permanently available. -You only have to do one vehicle prep mission, I highly recommend the submarine one as it's relatively simply and does not have a second mission to get a pilot (which is the case for the bomber and helicopter prep mission) -Same goes for the weapons prep mission. Just do one of them and I highly recommend choosing a loadout with an assault rifle. Also buy the silencers for 5k. -Do all the equipment and sabotage prep missions (You may skip the explosive charge one). With all the sabotage missions completed the guards will have no armor and will only have weak pistols and mps. Also no Buzzards will spawn. -To save time on the prep missions use the fast travel function on the submarine to get as close as you need and then use the sparrow to fly to the location. Each fast travel costs 2k. (For some reason before you complete the heist the first time each fast travel costs 10k, don't ask me why) -Then you play the heist itself. If you select the drainage tunnel as the entry point, you will effectively spawn in the mansion right from the get go, which saves a lot, and i mean a lot, of time. -Use the silenced assault rifle for easy stealth kills. It's easy to take out two guards standing together in quick succession that way. Also guards and cameras don't seem to care if they spot a dead body. (sometimes GTA's horrible stealth system works in your favor lol) The only danger is the Juggernaut NPC, but you can easily just go around him. -Collect the main loot (ie Madrazos files or later a big pink diamont or ruby necklace) which is worth between 1 and 1.3 million and just rush out of the mansion. Ignore everything else and make your run for the airstrip. It's easy to just avoid guards and the Valkyrie which spawns after you leave the mansion. The only problem are snipertowers, but you can take them out with a well placed shot even from far away. -Collect some easy extra loot (cash, weed) at the airstrip until you can't carry anymore. Then swim/fly back to the submarine and you're done. In the end you will earn between 1.3 and 1.7 million. As you don't have a crew like in the casino heist, basically all of that money is yours. I highly recommend this strat. I only had to restart twice, mostly because I wasn't yet familiar with the enemies locations and routes. In my third attempt i rushed trough and did the finale in just about 25 minutes. Unlike my first heist this one was actually rather thrilling and dare I say fun. If you're quick you can complete 2 - 3 heists a day, leaving you with at least 4 million (in case of 3 heists), which I would say is pretty decent. You can atleast make the money you paid for the sub back very quickly. Also the first time you do this you will get an additional 300K (100K for doing this heist solo + 200K for doing the heist without being spotted) tl;dr: I think this or a more finetuned version of this will become the meta Edit: I have created a 20 minute Video to explain a more improved version of this strat in more detail. I would like to see some feedback from you.
Hello all, I am here with my plan for my subreddit Reddit Nation If you are interested in joining a (hopefully) newly formed island nation then this is the place to be. I have prepared a plan that explains how we will go about doing such a task. More detailed elaborations for each component of the plan will be given at request. Obviously the first question is where we would have our island. I have identified places of interest. One place of interest is the Nation of Belize. Belize is a small nation with a low GDP of 2 Billion and they are selling off most of their island. Islands with 50-100 acres can be acquired for around 500,000; give or take 50,000. From the people (Government Officials) I have contacted, they are perfectly okay with this plan. Now here is a 5 step proposal of how this will come to fruition (I will expand on how we will finance this)
Acquire the island
Set up the initial infrastructure
Form of Government that I propose is a constitutional monarchy
Country will be run as a democracy (two chamber form of parliament)
Noble titles such as Duke, Earl, Count, Lord, Baron etc will be sold off to help initially finance the island.
Establishment of the Government Building
For now this is where the government will convene until more infrastructure is added and the island is improved.
People will be made citizens at this location
Establishment of Civil Services
Waste collection, Police, Social Services
Establishment of a Port
This will allow supplies to enter the island.
This will allow for the island to participate with the rest of the world economically(I will expand on this later).
The port will function as the entrance point and exit until the runway can be constructed.
Establishment of Resident Housing
This temporary housing will be until the island can be developed and more permanent buildings can be put up.
Resident Housing and the Government building will be set up near the port until island development is completed
Set up a massive solar powered crypto mining operation to help finance further development of the island
A partnership with big mining companies can be brokered to have this set up
Make the Island a desirable location
Set up the island as a luxury city
Free housing for citizens
Free healthcare for citizens
Free schooling and university for citizens
Build resorts and legalize gambling on the island
The revenue generated from such activities will help finance further development of the island
With the revenue generated from this, the island will be able to provide for the residents a luxury city
The gambling industry investments will help to finance the island as well
Make the island a banking haven
Set up a bank on the island
No KYC laws will be enforced on the island
This will attract forgien investment into the island
Allow cryptocurrency companies to conduct business without oversight and for miners to set up large scale operations using solar powered energy
No income tax,sales tax, capital gains tax or corporate on the island
Commercial businesses such as casinos, resorts, and banks will just pay slightly inflated property taxes
This will help attract a lot more forgien investment as well
Will attract companies to set up offices here and thus bring jobs to the island.
Expand on the island infrastructure
Build an airport. The islands have enough space to accommodate runways for planes even up to jumbo jets
Build more free luxury housing for residents
Establish schools and universities
Establish a healthcare system
Enjoy the luxury haven of an Island that we have built
Now for the question of how much this island will cost and how we will get the funding According to my calculations (you can look at them below) it will cost us $2,600,000
The Island itself
200,000 to build
This will benefit us later when we receive forgien investments
500,000 for 250 passenger ferry
We will budget around 100,000 for operating costs
These buildings will be permanently built but occupied until the island is built and then will be sold off to recoup the investment.
Around 50,000 to purchase initial equipment and medical supplies
Another 100,000 to purchase ATVs
Another 100,000 to purchase off roading vehicles
Bitcoin mining operation
We will get the money for the operation by partnering with a large company
We will purchase MRE’s and other preserved food products for the island
An exact count of this cannot be made until we move further into the plan
Further development of the island
This will be financed by the forgien investments in regards to banking, gambling and tourism along with money raised from property taxes
Now in regards to how we will raise that sum
We will sell off noble titles (this is why we will set up a constitutional monarchy)
While no price has been established yet, the titles for sale can include
A small percentage of the island (less than 25%) will be earmarked for sale immediately. The part earmarked for sale will be part of the planned downtown district/capital and developers of this land will be allowed to build whatever structures they want and won't have the problem of jumping through hoops like zoning laws.
On a 60 acre island, 15 acres would be marked for sale
The acres on this haven of an island will be sold for 250,000 each so the island would raise 4.5 million and the sale of said acres will help kickstart the massive infrastructure of the island and provide the island with adequate funding.
Once the island is set up, the island will continue to profit from digital activities which will allow it to not have to charge an income tax or corporate tax
Digital activities include the solar powered bitcoin mining operation
We will partner with an existing bitcoin company for this
Solar powered web hosting
People can become citizens for a fee of $10 which will mainly go to the printing of their ID and filing in the government archives but the island will profit a few dollars off of this
If you have made it this far, please join the subreddit for this plan More information to come soon, thank you.
First off: I have lots of experience with Hitman games, so I am a bit biased, when it comes to stealth. I also compare mechanics with Hitman games, as they do it pretty well. Actually, this game showed me how good the stealth in the recent Hitman games is and how bad it seems to me here... I was initially trying to build a Stealth/Melee character. Basically, silently taking out enemies, until you make a mistake and then I want to cut them to pieces, once everyone runs at me. Now, I'm not sure if it's only the bugs and other issues arising from those or if I am missing something so I am trying to find people who had the same thoughts or have a better explanation for my situation. I do not want to write whole book about my play style, so I will just give a couple of examples, where I had trouble when thinking about how I can solve a mission. (Spoilers below) The best example is the mission, where you have to get the Van from the Animals in the abandoned casino(?) type building for the Voodoo Boy named Placide. So, as far as I have seen there are only 2 entrances. The main entrance and the side entrance. The quest leads you to the side entrance. The front entrance has 2 guards standing in front of it and I am not aware of any way to beat them, without them detecting and attacking me at some point. To get to the side entrance, you have to pass 2 groups of enemies. You can sneak around them or kill them. That's alright. Once you are in the back area, climbing up the debris, you are in a hallway, where one of the Animals is straight looking at you in the corrider, through the whole corridor. There is no way around him, except perhaps taking advantage of his low attention span, when you are quick and precise in your hiding spot. However, not even this would work, because there is some guy glitching through the wall, so there is no way to get through the way unspotted or at least I have seen no generally available way of doing that. It also does not help that I made a camera friendly there and at some point it again turned against me. This makes matters even more complicated. There is also a door you can brute-force open or open with your tech skill. However, if you have neither (which I did't) you cannot use those sideways, therefore they are not generally available, as previously mentioned. Later I actually found out that the room was not connected to other places anyway, so it does not matter after all in this situation. How can I even get into the place without being detected?How can I try to stealthily do this mission (even the mission giver requested that anyway), when there is no apparent way of even entering silently? The summary of issues with stealth, which all are applicable to this example situation from that particular mission:
Distractions almost don't work. 9/10 of the distractions I needed do not work! The enemies do not care about them, because they are too far away, or whatever. What makes matters worse, even if they would work, sometimes there are not enough distractions to make a safe silent takedown, for example. As is the case in the described corridor. There aren't enough distraction items in the right places for a distraction to work properly enough, even if it would actually work in the first place.
I tried the "Whistle" Quickhack and guess what -- you have to be so close to the enemy, that if you use it, they will certainly see you! I only had the chance to try it once and the enemy even went to my new location, not to the location where the whistle was supposed to originate from. Can't confirm this a 100% though, because, as mentioned, I could only try this hack once, since you have to be basically be right next to the enemy for it to work, which neither makes sense, nor does it fullfill the purpose. You want to lure the enemy away from a place with whistles and not just let them move a couple of steps into a direction...
There is no "no witness - no problem" policy. If you somehow weirdly manage to lure out an enemy after all (in unintended ways, I am sure the game did not want to achieve this and it also requires a lot of patience) and you quickly kill them with a sword, guess what -- no matter how quickly you kill the target, no matter how secluded you are when doing that, you instantly go into Combat mode, all enemies see you and you are out of stealth and back to playing Rambo! This just does not make any sense. This is one of the biggest problems of stealth in the game, if not the number 1 problem. The only way to take down an enemy which ever was possible to work as silent/stealthy was grabbing and killing/incapacitate, but you obviously can't go to a group of enemies and kill everyone one by one like that...
It always seems like you can't mix stealth with any combat. There are so many times when I saw that you could break into an area using your tech or strength attributes, to avoid direct combat. It seems to me, like you have to go full stealth and only put points in Stealth and Tech or perhaps Intelligence or avoid Stealth altogether and just go for raw brute force. I almost never saw a way to entertain a natural stealthy way of progression, without having the necessary tech level. This restricts the whole stealth approach in the game a lot.
I did not manage to find a single silencer for a pistol, after roughly 20 hours play time. However, even if I would find one, I doubt it would help with the "you are instantly in Combat mode, if you just poke an enemy the wrong way and then you have to go full Rambo" situations. I assume, I would go into Combat mode, because I shot someone, no matter if it was silences and nobody heard it or not.
What is the economic point of stealth? Don't you get much richer when brutally murdering all enemies? The latter is not only way easier, but brings more rewards. Seems like a loss-loss situation, when choosing to hardcore stealth through a whole mission.
The worst thing about the Combat mode vs Stealth is that it seems like the options are always binary: Either be a shadow, don't equip any weapons at all and just sneak into every crack with your Tech attribute crouch past distracted enemies OR go full Rambo, fighting 25 enemies in a huge building. I cannot find a way inbetween, which is my favourite style. I want to be stealthy, but at times I want to maybe quickly kill 3 enemies and then head on stealthily. Having all the problems described above, I find it almost ridiculous and sarcastic, how many body dumpsters there are in the game. What's the point? In my entire play time I only had the situation twice where hiding a body would actually help (and even those were just in the beginning of the game, long before Act I). Usually, it's as explained above: either do not use any weapons at all, preferably do not even touch enemies at all or go full Rambo, killing everyone in the loudest way possible. Can someone relate or enlighten me about something I apparently missed?
Chapter by Chapter Summary of Comprehensive Research on Discrimination Against Men in Finland (PhD Thesis)
What can you do as an MRA?
Can other people with less obvious MRA accounts like me i.e. more normal looking accounts, post stuff (this is a general comment, not just for this thread) post this on more mainstream threads e.g. Finland sub, sociology, etc.... MAKE SURE you are polite, factual, avoid emotive language, avoid talking about feminism, and post high quality stuff
Comment here particular quotes, passages, excerpts that are relevant. Especially since its such a long document, this will be useful for all of us.
You can make these excerpts into separate threads if worthy.
Share this on social media? (set up an anon MRA twitter, Facebook etc... MRA is thriving on social media. It is good as its a lot more activism based)
If you live in Finland, send some emails to journalists (you can search journalists who have already discussed mens issues), and send some to politicians etc. You can easily write one letter and send it to multiple people. Maybe the individual excerpts/issues you find would be better to send (and then you could also add the whole document summary as an addendum for reference for the reader) - Finland is a small country, I dont think many users will be from there here.
NOTE: It is good that these issues are being increasingly recognised, and more people are doing this as projects in academia. This is only growing and snowballing as more people are red pilled. Look up Male Psychology Network, they are doing fantastic work, growing and have presented an ALTERNATIVE to patriarchy conspiracy theory and are working to dismantle the idea in academia. https://youtu.be/LHYRYKCIDxk?t=591
Main Body - Here it is:
This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of Discrimination Against Men: Appearance and Causes in the Context of a Modern Welfare State, a 2009 doctoral dissertation by Pasi Malmi (University of Lapland) that provides an impressively detailed and balanced investigation of discrimination against men in Finland (the theory and results actually give almost as much detail on discrimination against women, although men will be the focus here). Chapters 5 to 8 are the most important. Chapter 5 explains six biases that cause gender discrimination, chapter 6 delineates the patriarchal and matriarchal subsystems of Finnish society, chapter 7 examines the various discourses that justify discrimination against men, and chapter 8 analyzes a database of gender discrimination complaints made to the Finnish gender equality ombudsman, a third of which were made by men. (Length: 1,800 words.) Chapters 1 to 4 (introductory/background chapters) Chapter 1 situates the perspective taken by the dissertation within gender studies. It rejects anti-feminist and anti-women perspectives, and the glorification of traditional masculinity and gender roles (e.g., the mythopoetic men’s movement). But it also rejects the “critical studies of men” paradigm, which sees men as the main causes of men’s and women’s problems, refuses to criticize feminism or women, and does not believe that discrimination against white, heterosexual, middle-class men exists (pp. 20–21). Chapter 2 defines various relevant concepts, and explains that the findings from Finland are intended to be relevant primarily for the Northern European welfare states, and secondarily for other European and Anglo-American countries (pp. 32–34). Chapter 3 gives a brief overview of current or traditional viewpoints on what causes direct or indirect discrimination or mistreatment of men: gender roles, hegemonic masculinity, industrial capitalism, feminism (specifically gender feminism and victimization feminism), and exploitative women (pp. 36-44). Chapter 4 develops a theory of sociocultural evolution, which says that ideas that are simple, exaggerated, and coherent with popular paradigms generally win out over their rivals, regardless of whether they are true or backed up by evidence. This happens due to functional selection (p. 57), unintentional biases (p. 63), and interest group bias (p. 71), among other factors (see summary, p. 115). Chapter 5: Applying the Theory to Gender Discrimination (p. 118) This chapter develops a general theory of gender discrimination, centered on a typology of six different biases that cause gender discrimination (p. 127). The masculine bias and feminine bias are unintentional gender biases caused by the processes that simplify, exaggerate, and mutate people’s mental memes or ideas according to their gender (p. 127). For example, a person’s conception of domestic work or childcare will be centered on their own experiences or contributions, which are partly determined by their gender, and so they will often downplay/exclude the other gender’s contributions (e.g., yardwork vs. housework) (pp. 135–138). As a result of these biases, segregated groups and networks of men or women tend to have a masculine-biased or feminine-biased culture of values, priorities, concepts, words, stories, jokes, stereotypes and beliefs that can lead to practices that discriminate against the other gender (p. 120). For example, a group of female social workers might decide that women are better custodians of children and default to recommending custody to them (pp. 141–142). The masculist bias and feminist bias come from interest groups, networks, or movements seeking to advance the status of men or women, respectively. Masculism and feminism have sexist and anti-sexist branches (p. 143). The modern sexist branch of feminism includes theories like feminist standpoint epistemology (which gives special status to women’s feelings and intuitions) and the feminist theory of social work (interests of women and children are synonymous, social workers should identify with their female customers). It also includes stereotypes that women are unselfish, peaceful, responsible, loving, hard working, while men are the opposite (pp. 149–152). The anti-sexist branch of feminism by definition is less hostile towards men as people, but it is not necessarily able or willing to accept men’s issues: “[i]n general, the idea of the discrimination of men is perceived as bizarre by feminists” (pp. 155–158). The sexist branch of masculism is discussed primarily in the context of religion (pp. 144–129). The anti-sexist branch of masculism has little power, although it is discussed as sometimes being the source of biased statistics downplaying women’s issues (pp. 152–155). The alpha male bias and alpha female bias are the biases of high status (wealthy, powerful, attractive, etc.) members of each gender against low status members of their gender. They are particularly apparent in high status men’s bias against male criminals (male judges giving harsher treatment, including sentences, to them compared to women) and high status women’s bias against female prostitutes (pp. 170–173). A central point of this dissertation is that male-dominated and female-dominated organizations (the patriarchal and matriarchal subsystems) are prone to predominantly discriminate against the other gender, but it’s important to clarify that they’re not guaranteed to do so. The masculine and feminine biases (the unintentional “own gender” biases) are just two of the six biases. An organization could be more influenced by the ideological biases (masculist and feminist biases) or the biases against low social status people of each gender (alpha male and alpha female biases). Chapter 6: Locating the Patriarchal and Matriarchal Subsystems of the Finnish Society (p. 188) This chapter identifies Finnish society’s patriarchal and matriarchal subsystems by looking at various measures of power, including raw numbers, managerial positions, control of knowledge, and informal positions of power (p. 222).
Patriarchal subsystem: technology, commerce, state finances, defense, agriculture, transportation, trade, corporative labor and employer organizations.
Matriarchal subsystem: healthcare, social services, social policy, equality policy, hotels, restaurants, and some cultural services.
Not all areas of Finnish society fall into one of these subsystems. Chapter 7: An Empirical Examination of the Memeplexes, Discourses and Coalitions that Induce Discrimination against Men (p. 224) This chapter analyzes the discourses that justify discrimination against men, coming from sources that include sexism and feminism. Sexism: The development of the modern misandric versions of sexism is examined, including 19th century views of men as “barbarians whose urges had to be leashed in by the forces of decency—meaning women—if civilization were to survive” (p. 233), which it attributes to the joint interests of women and upper class men. Notions of chivalry and macho masculinity also lead to institutionalized belief systems where men’s comfort, health, and even lives are considered less important than women’s (p. 238). Macho masculinity, with its aversion to men “complaining”, tends to oppose talking about men’s issues or seeing them as relevant for gender equality (p. 306). Feminism: Certain influential varieties of feminism see women as the disadvantaged and discriminated gender (p. 247). Thus the sole purpose of equality policy is women’s advancement (p. 256) and men are largely reduced to the role of defendant (p. 270). When faced with cases requiring a choice between promotion of equality and empowerment of women, many feminists reacted by rejecting equality as outdated or as a smokescreen for promoting men’s interests over women. Under these discourses, “the empowerment of women is more important than the advancement of gender equality in all contexts, including the matriarchal subsystem of the society” (pp. 259–260). That would apply even to women’s advantage in family courts and criminal courts (p. 305). Also mentioned is a combination (and mutation) of difference feminism and equality feminism which says that “women are superior to men in many ways, but men are not superior to women in any ways” (p. 296)—which means that when men are ahead it’s because of sexism, but when women are ahead it is legitimate and natural. The groups and alliances that justify misandry and discrimination against men (p. 334): 📷 Chapter 8: Gender Discrimination, According to the Complaints Sent to the Finnish Equality Ombudsman (p. 346) Complaints: This chapter analyzes 800 complaints of gender discrimination made between 1997 and 2004 and sent to the Finnish equality ombudsman (p. 348). Men were 33% of victims, according to the author’s suggestion for the best measure of actual discrimination in these cases (outcome types 3–5, p. 356). Labour market discrimination, the largest category, primarily involved women (76%), while the second largest category, discrimination against customers, primarily involved men (~60%). Another category, discriminative legislation, primarily involved men (77%). Few complaints were made, but due to active conscription policies (lasting 5-12 months), almost all men in Finland are affected by discriminative legislation. The author classifies these complaints as discrimination, although the equality ombudsman does not, “as the Finnish equality law is not applicable to men’s obligatory military service” (p. 354). Bias: Per chapter 6, equality policy itself is in the matriarchal subsystem of equality (e.g., 90% of employees in the equality ombudsman office are female, p. 354). The ombudsman has a policy not to comment on complaints involving custody and divorce, purportedly to not interfere with the court system, but the author suggests that it stems from a bias against men, perhaps due to prioritizing women’s status over equality or wanting to avoid a flood of complaints from men (p. 354). This is made more explicit by another comment from the ombudsman’s office saying that it is not taking action on certain cases of discrimination against men because “the main purpose of the equality law is to improve women’s status especially in the labor market”, suggesting that the law should be applied more strictly to cases of discrimination against women (p. 381). Patriarchal & matriarchal subsystems: 57% of discrimination cases in the matriarchal subsystem of society (as defined in chapter 6) were against men, compared to 31% in neutral domains, and 17% in the patriarchal subsystem of society (p. 358). Discrimination examples: Many cases of discrimination against women (e.g., a workplace that only required women to do extra cleaning tasks on top of their regular duties) are recounted on the same pages but we’ll look at men here.
In the labour market: At a mental hospital, only men were appointed to night shifts (p. 374). At a school, preference was given to hiring female teachers even though men are the “underrepresented” gender (p. 376). Many traditionally feminine jobs excluded men in their recruitment material (p. 377). A workplace allowed women to wear more casual and comfortable clothing than men (p. 377).
As customers: Favourable pricing for women in boat cruises, discotheques & dancing places, dating services, gymnastics, a theatre, restaurants, horse races, and car insurance (pp. 380–382). Also more strict clothing standards for men at a casino, higher minimum ages for men to enter restaurants, and an apartment that only allowed women (pp. 382–383).
Government administration: Subsidy for women’s osteoporosis medicines but not men’s (from pension fund), free public screening for breast cancer but not prostate cancer, higher retirement age for men (which has been changed) (pp. 387–389).
Legislation: Men’s complaints were all about the obligatory military or civil service of six to thirteen months (those who refuse get six months in prison, p. 390).
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