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Tech Tips

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    PlanetQuake | Features | Tech Tips | 2-19-2000
   

Tech Tips Mailbag

 

More on the Ratpad

 

Stayability (or something):
Mousepad slippage is the bane of gamers everywhere, but with the Ratpad it is literally a thing of the past. Underneath the pad are eight rubber feet that securely hold the pad down on your desk. Bottom line is, this pad is NOT going ANYWHERE. It's actually quite difficult to move it across the desk at all without picking it up, and I've found that the keyboard will ride up the mousepad instead of vice versa. No matter what amount of ridiculous mouse thrashing you do, the Ratpad will stand it's post better than anything else I've seen.

Performance:
Ahh the part we've all been waiting for, all this is great but how much does the Ratpad actually help gaming performance? The answer is, QUITE a bit. Just using it around the desktop, it took me a few minutes to get used to it's smoothness and precision. The first game I loaded up was Tribes, which demands a great deal of accuracy for shooting small targets, as well as wide sweeping movements. In both these tasks the Ratpad performed wonderfully. My shots were much more accurate, and due to it's greatly increased sensitivity, I could perform 180's effortlessly. The pad performs just as well in Quake 3, my rail shots were more dead on then usual, and making quick tight turns in cramped hallways is much easier. It will take a little while to get used to the increased sensitivity the Ratpad gives you, and some of you might even need to turn your mouse sensitivity down a bit, but after a little while you'll be playing better than ever. Not once during an entire afternoon of arduous playtesting (har har), did I ever run off the mousepad, and for once I didn't have to keep picking up and moving the mouse every couple minutes. The Ratpad stayed firmly in place and kept itself pristinely clean. I couldn't believe I was using the same mouse, compared to my generic cloth pad, the Ratpad breathed new life into my battle scarred Intellimouse.

The list of the Ratpad's features goes on and on. It is fully compatible with optical mice, and actually would be a pretty good idea because of it's very low friction against the mouse feet. Also, gaming is not it's only function, this pad also works very well for graphic's art stuff as my brother found out, and works well for real time strategy due to it's accuracy and sensitivity. It's only real detriment could be it's size. While it's size is really a great feature for gamers, it can also be a difficult problem for those of you with limited desk space. I would definately advice measuring out enough space before ordering one if you aren't sure. Also, if you don't quite have the space or are one of those people who like having their entire hand on the mousepad, you can always rotate it on it's side and frag away.

Overall, for those of you who are skeptical that a mousepad can make much of a difference in your gaming, THINK AGAIN! Not only is a good mousepad essential for proper gaming, it's every bit as important of an investment as your mouse is! And if you ask me, whether you're a casual gamer, a hard core competitor, a photoshop freak, or just a computer user who wants a quality product that will dominate with it's coolness, the absolute hands down best overall mousepad (and handy-dandy replacement kitchen utensil) is the Ratpad. It owns me completely, and soon it'll own you too. >evil laughter, gong sound<

-Spoon

All I can say is Amen Brotha Spoon! He left nothing out that I would say other than that I have had serious 0wNaGe on Quake III Arena since using this mousing surface. It improved my game by giving me a smoother, faster controllable area. And I no longer fall off of my mousing surface in my mad rage to frag!

My profound gratitude to Kyle Bennet of Ratpadz for allowing us to test and write about his product.

 

On with the MailBag!!!

From: Dan Krouse

Subject: Null Skin Error in Quake 2

Hi,
I'm hoping you can help me - or direct me to a site that has the info. I've been playing Q2 Multiplayer, well since it first came out. About 2 months ago I started getting Null Skin Errors when I play. Sometimes it's just an annoying stream of messages - other times it shuts the game off completely. This happens in Lithuim II servers, Xatrix servers - all servers that I play on at least. I get a picture of some gold and black skin that I don't even seem to have in skins file. When I've asked, the other players list a whole bunch of skins - so I don't think it is just one. I have a PII 333, 56K modem and am using a Voodoo3 2000 card. I don't know if something got changed in one of my files - or I have a bunch of bad skins or what.

Any help would be appreciated.
Thanks,
Dan Krouse

This seems to happen a lot to people. And the fix makes us all feel silly. You need to look in your C:\Quake2\baseq2\players folder. Make sure there are no loose files in that folder. ONLY folders within that folder. Any erroneous files floating around will render the skins in the players folder virtually useless.

 

From: Dennis

Subject: Mouse Look Q3A

Any way to activate mouse look in Q3A so the mouse does not perpetually look around while in motion?

First you need to have the Point Release installed. With the Point Release came the ability to turn off free look. Go into the Q3A menu, Setup>Controls>Look and turn free look off.

 




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