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Author Topic: MMOG suggestion please (update: tech question re video cards)
Oualawouzou
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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Heya,

Yeah, I must be going crazy but in the past weeks, I've had a growing urge to give the whole MMOG thing another shot. However, there is now quite a large range of games available, so I'd appreciate some input. The only past experience I have is Everquest (was nice, but I was extremely annoyed at how every expansion made 95% of the rest of the world obsolete) and the demo of Anarchy Online (let's just say it sucked and leave it at that).

First of all, my comp isn't all that good. I can't seem to find that info on WinXP Pro, but if I recall right, it's a PIII 800. Graphic card is a measly GeForce 2 MX (though I should be able to find a cheap upgrade if need be). I do have 512 RAM though, so that's one good thing I've got going. [Smile] My upgrade budget is extremely limited.

I don't have a preferred setting, though I enjoy fantasy and superheroics (City of Heroes, I'm looking at you).

I'm looking for a game that does not require too many long play sessions. I can probably log in and play one hour or so on most days, but it's much harder for me to log in and play 3 hours straight, even if it's only once a week. So I don't mind if it requires many hours to progress, I just want the ability to break them up in several small play sessions... But maybe I'm asking too much already. [Frown]

Carefully implemented PvP is a plus, just because it's fun to have an unpredictable (sp?) adversary once in a while. [Razz]

The next point makes me sort of an oddball... but I want a game that encourages you (or at least, a game where it is doable) to be relatively self-sufficient. I dislike a washed-down economy where everybody and their brother buy stuff that was farmed by people 20 levels over, and where "level appropriate" loot is considered trash. In EQ, every item on my body had been fashionned, looted or quested for by myself (I don't mean "alone", I mean I gave my sweat and blood for these items instead of my platinum pieces), with the exception of a few select items that required a specialist in a trade skill or another to obtain. I want a game where I can live with this philosophy without being utterly and completely outclassed. I understand that this attitude will never get me in the Top 10 of l33tness, I just want to get by.

There... Now, I've done a little research but I feel somewhat overwhelmed. So much has changed since I quit the scene! But here are my impressions of a few games currently on the market.

Guild Wars: Some things look good in it (instances, playable in small doses, no monthly fees), but... I don't know. It feels somewhat... bland? [Confused]

Worlds of WarCraft: I know many, many people on the MMOG scene just rave about this game. Unfortunately, it'd require me to do some massive upgrading (out of the question right now) and I understand it gets very much raid intensive (time constraints). I love the idea of massive PvP battles though.

Everquest II: No. Sorry. I'd love to go back to Norrath, but from what I've gathered, the game is just... flawed. I agree with what Penny Arcade said about it recently: "it looks like a game designed by focus groups".

Dark Age of Camelot: This one actually looks good to me, but I see the list of expansions and fear they've gone the Everquest way.

City of Heroes: Looks good too, but I'm still wondering if it isn't too "basic" a game. I mean, I don't really get what your long-term goals are supposed to be.

So, there I am... Do you have any suggestions? And am I difficult enough to please? [Razz]

Thanks!


P.s.: Oh, and bonus points if that game happens to have the Ranger class and the character name Minerios available...

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Le champignon arrive.

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Alkatr0z
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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Have you had a look at City of Villains?
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Miles Invictus
Deck the Malls


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Speaking as an avid Guild Wars player, I can say that it's not as bland as it might first seem. It helps, though, to join a guild with mature human beings in it. It fits your "oddball" requirement, too -- the levels and equipment hit their peak about 50-75% through the game, and you can trade with NPC collectors and crafters to get competitive equipment. "Competitive" meaning the highest damage values possible (for weapons) and the highest armor values possible (for armors).

There's some sort of demo event going on in March; I could send you an invite, if you were interested in trying it out (and patient enough to wait, and willing to give away your email address).

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BathTubAdventurer
A Rolling Stone Gathers No Kate Moss


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What about Kingdom of Loathing?
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Salamander
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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KOL is fun, but I found it became somewhat pointless after a while. Particularly since Jick was slow to update anything (at the time I was playing anyway).

I'll put my vote in for World of Warcraft. Mrs Sal has a rig similar to yours (less RAM though) and it plays okay as long as you tweak some of the settings down. It only really grinds for her in the big cities when there are lots of players but it does that for me as well.

We both tried Dark Ages of Camelot and hated the game almost immediately. We were both glad we downloaded the trial version than pay for the game.

I've heard Guild Wars is good but it apparently comes to a stop fairly early compared to other MMOs out there.

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"victory thru self-deception"

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1958Fury
We Wish You a Merry Giftmas


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Well, it's not actually a MMO, but I play it for all the same reasons... plus this is a good chance for me to plug my server [Wink]

NeverWinter Nights can have all the same features as an MMO. Many people host their own NWN persistent worlds, running 24/7. Sure, most of them don't host as many players as an MMO - generally the max is around 64 - but I doubt you interact with more than 64 other players per session anyway.

What makes NWN so great is that each server has it's own rules, it's own "feel", and it's own type of player. Some are action-oriented, others are pure roleplay, and there's everything in-between. Plus, no monthly fee.

The downside is that NWN is on it's way out. The graphics are a little bit dated at this point, but that should make it run very fast on your computer. Another downside is that no persistent world is nearly as big as any given MMO world. But if you get bored with one, you can always try another.

NWN2 comes out this year, and is expected to use pretty much the same setup, so expect many more free persistent worlds catering to every player's needs. In the meantime, NWN1 is now available in cheaper editions that include both expansions.

Anyway, my NWN server is here:
Itropa
Mine is sort of a sci-fi/fantasy mix, and is sort of midway between action and roleplay. PvP is permitted as long as it's done in-character.

((edited for grammar and spelling... then edited again because I misspelled "grammar"... then edited again because I misspelled "misspelled".))

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I believe I'm growing skeptical of cynicism.
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Oualawouzou
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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Thanks for the suggestions so far everybody!

quote:
Have you had a look at City of Villains?
Isn't it an expansion of City of Heroes?

quote:
There's some sort of demo event going on in March; I could send you an invite, if you were interested in trying it out (and patient enough to wait, and willing to give away your email address).
Thanks for the offer. I'm still not sure it sparks my interest though. I'll check out the website some more, but all those flash (is it flash?) animated menus are killing me.

(EDITED: Oops, I wasn't done just yet!)

quote:
I'll put my vote in for World of Warcraft. Mrs Sal has a rig similar to yours (less RAM though) and it plays okay as long as you tweak some of the settings down. It only really grinds for her in the big cities when there are lots of players but it does that for me as well.

Hey, it's true! Somehow I remembered the minimum specs to be higher... Oh well, I've played EQ for quite a while on the minimum specs so it's something I can deal with... I looked some more into it and really like some features I had previously missed or overlooked (transport and the ability to rest for quicker exp next play session). Hum... If only I could get my WCIII enthusiastic friend to give it a go, but he has something against the whole pay-to-play thing.

I'm just slightly worried about the upcoming expansion. The features list is all fine and dandy, but I fear it'll once again make the "old world" obsolete. Though Blizzard is a synonym of quality, so I'm curious how they'll handle this one.


*sigh* And if I *do* make a choice... I'll have to break it out to SO. That'll be the hardest part. [fish]

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Le champignon arrive.

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Captain Zombie
Deck the Malls


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How about Ultima Online - its system requirements aren't as high as other games (IIRC), plus, you don't ever have to go and be a fighter if you don't want to. you could be a fisherman, or a miner, etc. plus, there aren't any levels, per se, just how skilled you are.

I enjoyed the hell out of it when it first came out.

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1st Infantry, SpecialOps Brigade - The Iron Faction.
I survived Initiation 2005... with Naked Mole Rat Sumotori and Bill O'Reilly

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Viliphied
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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Eeeeeeeeeeeeeew WoW.

Don't go to WoW if you're serious about PvP. If you really want fun, competitive PvP, Dark Age is your best bet, however it can be rahter lonely until lvl 20 or so, and much of the world is deserted, especially with server clustering. (basically, all the servers keep their pve areas, but 'clusters' of 4-5 all share the same pvp areas, so unpopular and lower level pve areas can be rather deserted.) If you do try it out, I'd suggest starting on the Gareth server, it will probably be the most friendly towards new players

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"I used to think I was a little unstable, then I met every girl I've ever dated." -- Mike Birbiglia

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Salamander
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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I don't mind the WoW PvP at all, mind you I play on one of the smaller servers (Daggerspine) where people seem to be better behaved. The Battlegrounds (3 PvP arenas) are pretty cool as well and the rewards are pretty good.

You can always play on one of the PvE servers and never have to worry about being attacked by another player unless you purposely wish to enter PvP.

Yet I'm very aware that there are plenty of people who won't like WoW so if it doesn't do it for you I certainly wouldn't take it personally [Wink]

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"victory thru self-deception"

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Errata
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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I'd definitely give City of Heroes a try, based on your comments. All MMOGs are ultimately pointless wastes of time, but the difference from some is that City of Heroes/Villains is actually fun to play while you're advancing your character, so its not just a chore while you race to the end game. Getting new powers is actually fun in a tactile way rather than an "ooh I can kill +1 orcs now" way. There is no comparison in any other MMORPG to how fun it is to play with a new travel power. Even just the character generator is so fun that people spend hours making characters they'll never have time to play much. I've tried everything on your list except DAOC, but I'm definitely more into PvE than PvP. The CoH missions are very fun and well designed. They can be every bit as epic as any raid on WoW, except you don't have to wait until max level for the good content, and you don't generally need hours of time and dozens of friends to experience it. When the game first came out there were gaps in the content where sometimes you would run out of missions or the missions would recycle too much and you would have to do boring things, but the updates (periodic free new content, not expansions) have filled that in and then some. Now you can max out a character just by doing fun new missions without even having time to see all the content.
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Quttaus
I Saw Three Shipments


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City of Villains is a stand-alone companion game to City of Heroes, not an expansion. Each is a complete MMO in its own right, though the two games link together and have cross-over areas. Only one game is necessary to play, though.

PVP is confined to certain areas in CoV/CoH, there are 3 free-for-all zones where players can fight each other, or go on special missions. There is also an Arena where players can challenge each other to duels (or group rumbles).

I love CoV/CoH, still playing 2 years later. Very friendly community, and you don't have to spend hours and hours to make progress (tho it helps [Razz] )

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"Hey! Let go of me before something horrible happens to me! OR ELSE!"
--Invader Zim

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Errata
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Quttaus, they are both standalone games, but if you get both, one is an "expansion" to the other in that you still pay for the same single account and can make both heroes and villains on that account. But it does have all the content to be considered a seperate game. Its definitely not an EQ style expansion that adds a few areas. The new area type expansions come in their free updates.
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Echinodermata Q. Taft
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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I thought pretty highly of WoW on the whole, but there were a lot of complaints about the high-end content...all my friends hit 60, took a quick look at the top-end dungeons, and quit (which was frustrating for me as I hadn't quite hit 60 yet). I also didn't like the PvP, mainly because every time major PvP got going, the video for me lagged to hell and back, and I'd usually get killed before I could even target someone.

I too will put in a good note for CoH/CoV, based on what you said about your playing habits. Most CoH "missions" don't take more than an hour to run (though there are exceptions), so you can manage to accomplish something worthwhile in a short play session, which is harder to do in most of the fantasy MMO's. It might be hard to get a decent group together for play in that kind of time frame, but that's equally if not more true in the other games, I think. And the world is smaller and relatively easy to travel in, so you don't spend half your play session just getting to the area you want to hunt in, particularly once you can fly, teleport, super leap, or move at super speed.

I prefer City of Heroes to City of Villains over-all in terms of the feel and variety. However, you need CoV (I think) for access to the Hero vs. Villain PVP zones. The CoV costume generator also offers more options, though I believe they may be porting some of those to CoH soon.

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Penguin Chips
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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Wow's pvp is fine. Don't listen to these people [Big Grin] .


World of Warcraft is a master peice of MMO. You don't get 5.5 million people with a crappy game. It's an amazing game.

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Quttaus
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
Originally posted by Errata:
Quttaus, they are both standalone games, but if you get both, one is an "expansion" to the other in that you still pay for the same single account and can make both heroes and villains on that account.

You're right, Errata. I just didn't want anyone to get the wrong idea, since "expansion" usually means that you had to have one before you can get the other.

Great review of CoH also. [Wink]

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--Invader Zim

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LivingDeadGurl
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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The one thing I will add about WOW is that I have the same type of gaming time as you. With a toddler at home, I can't make a lot of gaming commitments. I finally stopped playing because I couldn't do anything in an hour to an hour and a half. One thing that you might want to consider!

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You drink too much Tang!

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Errata
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by Echinodermata Q. Taft:
I prefer City of Heroes to City of Villains over-all in terms of the feel and variety.

I agree that the art style and variety are better in City of Heroes, but my favorite archetype has got to be Mastermind, and there is no Hero equivalent (controllers can end up with a pet, but its no comparison). For those of you who don't play, Masterminds basically control an army of NPC henchmen (mercenaries, robots, ninjas, or undead, with thugs coming soon), which can be a lot of fun. Most archetypes (but not all) are effective at soloing, but masterminds are literally their own group. Depending on their power choices and playstyle, they can often simultaneously fill every role in a group on their own (tanking, damage, healing, buffing, debuffing, crowd control). For this same reason they can also be more difficult to play to their full potential. They aren't as effective at PvP though, since players will bypass your henchmen, though they can do ok with a highly defensive PvP oriented build.
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kmcm
We Three Blings


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/hijack What does MMOG stand for? i know i'm a little behind the times, that last multi-player game i played was Major Mud like 10 years ago. Are they similar? what are the differences? end hijack/

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Of course this land is dangerous! All of the animals are capably murderous. Especially the penguins.

i'm a figment of my own imagination, sometimes i don't exist

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Errata
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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MMOG means Massively Multiplayer Online Game. Most are also MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Games), but some massively multiplayer online games are not roleplaying games. MUDs are text based games, usually much smaller games than the modern commercial games. They would be MOGs (Multiplayer Online Games), but not "massive", since muds usually measure players online at any one moment in the hundreds or tens rather than the thousands or tens of thousands. The popular MMOGs usually have hundreds of thousands or millions of subscribers, but they usually have to split them off into seperate servers (which you choose before starting a character) for bandwidth and database issues. MMOGs usually have nice 3d graphics, but a few are 2d.
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kmcm
We Three Blings


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ah, i see. Are there any good ones out there for people who are out of practice? besides toontown?

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Of course this land is dangerous! All of the animals are capably murderous. Especially the penguins.

i'm a figment of my own imagination, sometimes i don't exist

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Joe Bentley
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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Computer Gaming Monthly lists several free MMORPGs and other multiplayer online games in its yearly "101 Best Games." Might be worth taking a look into before plopping down 50 buck and/or 20 bucks a month.

Anarchy Online - Sci-fi based MMO. Ad supported free version available.

Dofus - Flash based online tactical fantasy MMO.

Fly for Fun - Anime style fantasy with Dialbo style gameplay.

Warrock - Multiplayer online modern military shooter.

Allegiance - Multiplayer space shooter.

Gunz - a highly stylized sci-fi shooter, CGM describes this game as "what The Matrix Online should of been"

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"Existence has no pattern save what we imagine after staring at it for too long." - Rorschach, The Watchmen

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Errata
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Really any game you pick should have a gentle enough learning curve for most people to be able to pick up. Everyone investing in large projects like these is out to reach new markets, not just hardcore gamers. So you shouldn't base your selection on being out of practice, but you can do some research on them, find something appealing to you, and discuss it with others before committing to it.
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Echinodermata Q. Taft
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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quote:
Originally posted by Penguin Chips:
Wow's pvp is fine. Don't listen to these people [Big Grin] .

Well, to be sure, PvP is a very low priority for me in MMORPG's. I much prefer cooperative, player-vs-environment stuff. If I want PvP, I'll play something like a shooter (Team Fortress Classic, anyone?) or something like a sports or poker game.

However, as I said, I never had a chance to really seriously get involved in WoW pvp, because major battles lagged my system too badly. Which could definitely be concerned to anyone worried about their system limitations to begin with.

--------------------
http://eqtaft.blogspot.com

Hope for the future! http://www.runobama.com

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Echinodermata Q. Taft
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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quote:
Originally posted by Joe Bentley:
Allegiance - Multiplayer space shooter.

Ah, Allegiance. What one magazine called "The greatest game nobody played." A really brilliant piece of design that failed for reasons I just don't understand.

I wouldn't call it an MMO, though, as it isn't a sustained world, and games involved maybe 64 playes at the most, IIRC. Also, sadly, Microsoft shut down its servers, though I see they have released the source code and enthusiasts are keeping it alive on private (and free!) servers, hooray!

(The basic idea was that of a team space battle, on a map divided into various sectors. Each team had a leader and an initial base. Players flew about in small, fighter or scout-type spaceships, hunting down resources which the team leader would use to research better technologies and build bigger and better ships with which to fight the enemy. Eventually some ships would be cooperatively "flown" by multiple players, a pilot and several gunners for instance. Different teams had different technical advantages, in speed or firepower or stealth or what-have-you. It was really a well-done game, which I enjoyed greatly in the beta, but it was a major flop when it actually rolled out, and undeservedly so, IMO.)

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http://eqtaft.blogspot.com

Hope for the future! http://www.runobama.com

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Oualawouzou
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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Thanks all for the additional input. [Smile]

SO made me an offer I can't refuse: she'll agree to free up some pre-determined time slots where I'll be guaranteed to play without being interrupted (she's the kind of girl to repeatedly ask me to pause my game for trivial matters... I think it's a way of testing her position in the hierarchy including me, her, the comp and the GameCube) the moment I complete my Masters degree. Yay! (and "doh" at the perspective of writing these dreaded 100 pages, though I knew all along it had to be done sooner or later).

Anyway, I asked a friend for advices on upgrading my video card and hard drive. He advised to go new with the HD and let him check if he could find me a cheap video card. Right now, I have a GeForce 2 MX but I can't seem to mind how many mb it has (I'm running WinXP Pro). He found a free ATI Radeon 7500 64mb. So I have two questions: 1) how can I find out how many mb my current card has, and 2) how does it compare to this possible free replacement?

Thanks!

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Le champignon arrive.

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Salamander
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Usually the video card displays what wonderful stuff it has right when you first boot the computer up.

However, this can be missed if your monitor is in power-saving mode and takes a few moments to warm up (my monitor doesn't kick in until the BIOS settings screen appears moments before going into the WinXP load screen) or if your motherboard has one of those "logo displays" that display a logo image instead of the usual bootup text.

You can overcome the first one by switching the monitor on a few moments before switching the PC on and you can overcome the second by going into your BIOS to switch off the "display logo on boot".

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"victory thru self-deception"

Posts: 2211 | From: Western Australia | Registered: Jun 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
   

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