I trust you're all well and good. Seeing as it's early February, I think it's about time I made my first blogpost of the year. And seeing as it was my birthday yesterday, what a good way to spread the love. Also to show off some swag and such!
So naturally, the day started with waking up at 8, and being greeted by this (Face removed to obvious "OMG IS THAT A GIRL" syndrome)
As you can probably see, a relatively bevy of treats awaited me! (And last nights plates in the window. Shut up already!
To my surprise, I got an exceptionally lovely haul!
My mother picked me up Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Despite the fact I have INFINITE BOOKS to read at the moment, this was a nice treat. I'm looking forward to reading that. The rest is at it seems. Will explain the most pressing image shortly! Oh also, my better halves parents got me a lovely USB cup warmer. Useful to put a pot of tea on when I'm in a Starcraft 2 match!
This was the package I opened from my better half. The best things. It also saves me the hassle of picking a main race when I play 1v1 on the ladder, now I HAVE to play Protoss. And hey, I'm okay with that! However, I thought the same that you did. Portal 2 isn't....even OUT YET. WHAT IS THIS DEVILRY?
It was a ruse all along. Although what I actually found was JUST AS GOOD.
However, my partners card was arguably the show stealer. The front can't prepare you for what's to be inside...
Somehow, all the worst (best?) pictures of me were acquired, and I was magically transformed. Oh well, it makes for the BEST CARD of all time, right? RIGHT?
Well, suffice to say, it was pretty magical, another year, another great little bounty!
If you'll excuse me, I'm now going to kill myself by means of overcaking. God speed, friends!
Hello friends. So, 2010 was a pretty neat-o year for playing videogames. There's been some highs (Starcraft 2) and some lows (Final Fantasy 13). Amongst all this shit, it's been a pretty good year, however. This isn't a blog which details "The best games from 2010", moreso a "Games I beat in 2010". After realizing I was one of those people who plays games for an hour, goes "Yeah that was alright, i'll come back in a day or two" then shelves it, I made a concerted effort in 2010 to actually FINISH games. So, without further ado, here's that all important list/end of year blog post/series of mini reviews. Enjoy!
January was actually a surprisingly good month. Cleared out some stuff I REALLY should have beat earlier, but not my best month. A good start for the rest of the year.
Army of Two: I know before you're already saying it. Beginning the year with Army of Two? I wish I could explain to you why we did this, but I guess we did. I went to a buddys house on new years day, and we needed some stupid shit to do, and this was it. Weirdly enough, I found myself actually enjoying this. But I think this was down to me and my mate CONSTANTLY using the butt pat/head slap. Ingame, of course.
Batman: Arkham Asylum: What is there to really say about Batman that hasn't already been said by everyone? It was an outstanding game. The stealth to combat ratio was spot on, it played so well, and it's actually a GOOD BATMAN GAME. However much I liked it, mind you, the 360 fucking ruined it for me. For some reason, my gamertag had been recovered somewhere else (?!), and when I came to do all the riddler stuff, and postgame content, the 360, in all its fucking infinite wisdom decided that because of this, it was wiping all my achievements and save game. As good at this game was, I'm not replaying it just for that.
Mario and Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story: This was another shocker. I knew that the Mario and Luigi RPG games were really good, I loved me some Superstar Saga, but I didn't think it would be this good. Reminded me of Paper Mario: 1000 year door. A good game, but I didn't think it was THAT funny. There were one or two laugh out loud moments, but by the time the game was rolling on, I was just skipping dialogue so I could get on with things. Worth a go if you like a decent nintendo RPG.
Bayonetta: You all know what Bayonetta is. You should probably play it. It's basically...well, it's Devil May Cry 3 with a chick. The combat felt great, if not a LITTLE hard at times, especially near the ending, but all in all, it was a tremendous game, which I felt was the evolution of that kind of hack and slash game. God of War 3 can eat a dick, Bayonetta is the fighter/slasher/hacker/brawler game of the year. You should also play it just for the Space Harrier level. No joke.
Phoenix Wright: Trials and Tribulations: The finale to the best DS franchise out there took me the longest time to beat. I don't know whether or not I was simply trying to drag out the game by slowly playing through it, but every single second I spent with Phoenix was just tremendous. After the relative dissapointment that was Justice for All, I was somewhat skeptical about going into this game. Then I met Godot. I'll be damned if you have played this game and didn't relate/sympathize with this character. Also, the final case on T&T. Goddamned manly tears.
February was a strangely slow month. But I guess when you see what I played, you'll kinda get it.
Mass Effect 2: Now, I won't lie. I hated Mass Effect. It looked terrible, the framerate couldn't keep up, textures popped, the inventory was unintuitive, the combat was balls, and so on. I couldn't get past the first few hours, despite the fact I bought it on release. It just wasn't very GOOD. Naturally then, I was a little tentative as to whether or not I should buy ME2. I'm glad I did. After the first hour or so, I was so into this game already. It controls like a game from 2010, it looked like a game from 2010, and goddamn if it didn't just...feel right. The side stuff was okay, but I'm not really into that kind of completionist mentality, reserved for psychopaths and Vinny. The loyalty missions were what did it for me. Some were a bit naff (Jacob/Miranda), but things like Grunt/Garrus were just outstanding. It's hard to really describe what's good about Mass Effect 2 without just reaming out a string of hyperbole. It essentially took what was good about the first game, and made EVERYTHING ELSE better. Brilliant dialogue, meaningful choices, and renegade interrupts. What more could you want? I'm looking forward to Mass Effect 3 now. Bring back Wrex.
By the time March hit, things were already kicking in. It was basically a strategy month.
Bioshock 2: Again, similar to Mass Effect 2, I never finished Bioshock. I just found it too hard/monotonous. I didn't really enjoy a game which was "Whack a man with a wrench, die, go back and hit him again". Saying that, I picked up Bioshock 2 for £10 (A little explanation as to how this whole scenario worked. I picked up Bayonetta when it came out for £40. Then when Mass Effect 2 came out, I could trade it in and pick up Bayonetta for £10. Then I did the same with Bioshock 2. 3 brand new games for £60? I'll take it), and really enjoyed it. It was just the right difficulty for someone as stupid as me to get into. and I loved the aesthetics of the world. It was a shame that we couldn't explore the sea bed more, that was definitely my favourite part. All in all, another belter of a game. Especially when you get your very own big sister.
Dawn of War 2 : So, I'm a big fan of RTS games. It's just a shame I'm so shit at them. Imagine my surprise when after thinking about this for a while, I picked this up with my new laptop. Or I think I bought it during a sale, THEN played it on my new computer. Whatever, this game is good. A well realised squad mechanic really gave you the diversity you needed to play the game EXACTLY how you wanted. Doing a mission with a shitload of Tyranids? Equip your mans with flamethrowers. Got a ton of Orks between you and the glory of the emperor? Equip chainguns and mow the greenskins down. Admittedly, some of the squads were kind of crap (I'm looking at you Thaddeus), and some were too powerful, the game just felt right. You could do endless missions to level up your dudes, which usually consisted of killing X guys, or protecting Y relic, but they were entirely at YOUR discretion. You could easily barrel through the game with no real problems if you know your units. But then you wouldn't get that epic quality sniper rifle you were jonesing for. And trust me, it's out there.
Dawn of War 2: Chaos Rising : There isn't really much to add that I didn't already specify above. The new campaign was FANTASTIC, adding a really neat morality system, which would essentially deviate your characters depending on the specific actions they took in the mission. Wanna leave a statue of the emperor to the Orks? Prepare to gain chaos points. Saving a village of innocents and unicorns? Good points. What made this interesting, however, was the distinction between skills you'd get on either side. As someone who played it through twice, I feel the Chaos abilities to be infinitely better than the nice guy stuff. Who wants to protect allies from 20% bullets when you can summon giant demon things to crush your enemies for you? Communists, that's who. A special mention goes out here actually to the "Last Stand" mode of multiplayer. It's similar to Gears of War 2's "Horde mode", where you and a couple of buddies have to fight off wave after wave of dudes. It's excellent. (Here's a hint for everyone. Pick the Chaos Sorceror, and use mind control on the Force Commander in wave...4 (I think). It's 2 heroes for the price of one!!)
Spelunky: A 2D freeware dungeon crawler by Derek Yu? You should just go and play this. Here's a hint. Get a jetpack.
Another month where I knuckled down with a few REALLY outstanding games. Quality over quantity, friends! Well, to an extent...
Dragon Age: Awakenings: I played the original on the xbox (bad move), so I couldn't import my lady into this, which kinda sucked, but the game caters for that SO WELL, that it didn't really bother me. Playing as a Grey Warden, you're basically clearing up all the shit that happened in the first game, but with new people. New classes were kinda good, especially the Legion of the Dead, but ...it's more Dragon Age. I wish I could elucidate more, but hey, it's more DA.
Super Mario Galaxy: Okay, so it's Mario freaking Galaxy. You've played it, you've loved it, and now I have. I don't know what took me so long to beat it, but my God, is it an excellent game. I grew up playing Super Mario Bros on my NES I got when I was 4, and never thought I'd love again, like I did for Super Mario World (It's better than 3, DEAL WITH IT). 64 was excellent, of course, but then Sunshine hit. I mean, Sunshine was OKAY, I guess, but it just didn't capture the sense of what I loved about the Mario 3D games. Then I started playing galaxy. Holy shit. The beginning of the game ALONE is so so good, yet it consistenly gets better and better. Bending the laws of relative gravity, and making me quit sometimes because I literally felt sick because of the weird vertigo shit that game pulled, I can't think of a better Wii game...yet. Special shout outs go out to the music in this game. Urgh, so good. You're exploring these incredible planetoids in space. Literally, just floating out there. But you're accompanied by just the most sweeping orchestral music. It's such a treat for the senses. You NEED to play this game.
Some new stuff, mostly catchups.
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots: This rings true with many of the sentiments I described when I discussed Mario Galaxy. Except all the MGS games are excellent... Now, typical dogging on this game often rests on people saying "The cutscenes are too long", or "It's not really a game". Kind of crass arguments for a game so heavily dependent on expositional story telling. MGS4 was the pinnacle of the franchise, really. MGS3 was by no means anything less than outstanding, but once again, in a similar vein to Mass Effect 2, MGS4 took the bad things from the previous games (Namely the shooting/general combat), and made it much more accessible to a mainstream audience. You didn't have to play some stealthy bugger, only snapping necks and knifing guys. You could just as easily run and gun fools down, and it was FUN to do that. Not that I did, of course. I'm basically Grey Fox. And the end fight in that game. Hot dog. If you've played it, you KNOW.
God of War: I don't think it's really appropriate for me to talk about God of War, I didn't really like it. I just slogged through it so I could play 2. It was alright, I guess. I played the HD version of it, which looked really neat. It was a bit hard though, at the ending.
Heavy Rain: I can't really remember the rhyme or reason for buying this. I think I got it on the cheap. That's not to say I didn't like it, however. I really appreciated what they tried to do in this game, and how they tried to basically subvert genre expectations for what is basically a point and click adventure game. Or Shenmue. I KIND of got into this from "The Idle Thumbs Podcast", simply because I wanted to "Cover my haaaaaaaair" or something. Wizard, bird noise, etc. I beat Heavy Rain in one sitting, so take that as you will, I guess. It was really exciting to the point where it kept my butt on a seat, but I also beat this AAA £40 game in one sitting. Even though I borrowed it from a mate. I'd be really interested as to what they can do with this tech. A really cool little detective game, I guess. JASON!!!
Not much got done in June. Except the GOTY.
Super Mario Galaxy 2: Not much more to say than what I said about Galaxy. It's just...more of that, but even more whack. Some of the things that happened in Galaxy 2 almost made me ill, just at how BALLS OUT CRAZY it was. I'll say this. I loved throwback galaxy. It's just a perfect game. 10/10
July was the busiest gaming month of the year for me. I just...got shit done. I guess it was also due to the fact that a lot of the games I FINISHED in July were kind of short. See for yourself.
Pixeljunk Shooter: This was a really cool game. When I was young, we got Sky television. There was a game on the "Interactive games" zone which was like this. You had to explore the ocean, pick up survivors with a rope, and escort them out. Now, this gave me a pretty big nostalgia hit (If anyone can remember what that was called btw, let me know. UK represent!). I don't know what was so good about PJS. It was just so fast and controlled SO well, it was a complete joy. It looked incredible, very vibrant, very bright, just an all around joy to play really. The addition of different "elements" per zone were pretty boss hog aswell. The star of the show is definitely the magnet suit. That was just hilarious. Super good downloadable game.
Demon's Souls: If you like "hard" games, you're probably very aware of Demon's Souls. From Software created a bit of a motherfucker in this game. I played through as much as I could as a spellblade, basically. Soul ray and the rapier, with a kite shield did me for a while. When I got firestorm, I blitzed the rest of the game. Until I hit a boss, and I'd just get fucking raped. Levels that deserve an extra "FUCK YOU" go to 4-2 (The level with the effing invisible assassins and grim reapers) and King Allant. King Allant, Jesus. He was a motherfucker, right? Nontheless, despite all the cries of difficulty from people, I didn't find it THAT BAD. Maybe it's because I grew up playing NES games nonstop. Maybe it's cause I've been the guy. Or maybe I'm just not a huge whiny baby. Nonetheless, DS was a brilliant, brilliant videogame. It was exceptionally fun, in regards to how GOOD I felt when I'd beat a single tough baddy. If you want a truly unique experience, that will tear your bollocks off in the first level, go play Demons Souls.
Valkyria Chronicles: VC was one of those games that I'd wanted to get into for the longest time, but could never really dedicate myself to. When I did, I found one of the most visually striking games I've seen in a long time. Taking the role of Welkin Gunther, you lead the rag tag army of Gallia, you fight back against an oppressive force. However, it wasn't necessarily the gameplay itself that made the game good. Don't get me wrong, a top down board game which transitions into direct control of a character is a concept I don't think I've seen before, at least done this well. What tied it together was the exposition between missions, the delightfully quaint story and relationships that would brew up between characters. Racial tension, death, the quality and question of life legtimacy all came together to create a surprisingly rich narrative, at least for what's essentially an anime game. It was JUST hard enough that you had to carefully consider your loadout, your positions, and even down to the direction you were FACING, while still feeling very approachable and intuitive towards new players. Even though fighting Jaeger was bullshit.
Punch Out: It's fucking Punch-Out. You duck, weave, punch and follow behind a fat guy on a bike. If you don't know what this came from, I feel bad for you.
Alien Swarm: I can't say I really cared for this. I know it was a freeware game from Valve of all people, but the lack of continued support and new maps/playtypes made it the kind of game that you'd beat once on every level, then you're kinda done. A poor mans Left 4 Dead.
InFamous: Yeah, another unpopular opinion. I didn't like InFamous at all. It was sloppy, handled so poorly (Is my man meant to be made of fucking magnetic glue or something?) and it was far too difficult. I made it through, but the game felt very unfair, and I could never seem to go where I wanted to. Average at best.
I'm getting tired now. August was okay.
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess: I tried to beat this when it came out, but the first dungeon was really hard for some reason. I'm very glad I finally sat down with the latest chapter in the Zelda franchise, as it was one of the best yet. I think it'll age well, where it's predecessors mightnot. I liked the return to the "Grown up" adult looking Link, which I guess went with them theme of the game. It was a very dark game, tonally and aesthetically. With a big emphasis on light world/dark world stuff, I really enjoyed the dungeons, and traversing the world map with a fast travel teleporty thing. The new items were kind of cool (The hook shot hands are a welcome addition any day), and the final boss was suitably excellent. I will say that I didn't really care for the air dungeon, but that's because things like that in Zelda games always stump me. Up yours, Water Temple. Also grown up Midna is mai waifu.
Space Harrier: And by this, I mean ACTUALLY LEGITIMATELY FINISHING SPACE HARRIER. Welcome to the fantasy zone, get ready!
God of War 2: So, I had the HD remake collection as previously mentioned, and I wanted to trade in some games so I could bag a copy of Starcraft 2, so I figured I'd blow through this just to get it done. It was actually pretty good. The beginning was a bit tough, I couldn't find out where to go, but after some initial bumpiness, it turned out to be pretty cool. The "Puzzles" were kind of ass, but it was a pretty neat game. Not as good as Devil May Cry 3
F.E.A.R 2: F.E.A.R 2 was a £6 game, and I enjoyed it. Being in a mech was super neat, but the blood effects in this game are so stupid. Still, a fun way to spend a day I guess.
Professor Layton and the Unwound Future: I have never finished a Layton game before this. They're just too...long. Or the puzzles get boring. Or I lose my DS. Pick one and go with it, thanks. But there was something about the 3rd game which captured my imagination. Seeing the backstory of Hershell Layton was really sweet, especially when you see him SPOILER WARNING: Click here to reveal hidden content.I really liked this game. The music was cool, the puzzles weren't too bad, and the minigames were kinda fun too. The movie is also cool!
Starcraft 2: It's Starcraft with a 2 on the end. Best multiplayer game in the last decade. I'm still playing it now, and I usually quit a game once I'm done with single player. It's the best RTS game out there, perfectly balanced, and just a good-ass game. You should play it.
Also, THOR IS HERE.
NOT WEARING A HAT
Starcraft 2 happened
Starcraft 2 happened
The last month of the year. And what a stinker.
Golden Sun: Dark Dawn: A new Golden Sun game should have really excited me. But it just kinda...came out. The transition to ghetto ass sprites to full 3D characters was a change I didn't really care for, but I got over it in the end. Suffice to say, the gameplay is monotonous (It's far too easy. You have 5000 djini, and 18 billion spells to use, but I guarantee all you'll ever do is hit the attack button and melee your way through the game. It's that easy) and the story was inconsistent as fuck. And that ending? Give me a break. Still sunk 30+ hours into it, and enjoyed it for the most part, but I don't think I actually had...fun with it. It just kinda...existed.
Call of Duty: Black Ops: I didn't think I'd like this, because it's an FPS, and I can't shoot a barn door with a bazooka. But hey, it was alright. It was kinda hard until I changed it to easy, then I turned into the Terminator. With a knife. Fine, I guess.
So hey, that's that! It was a pretty good year, all things considered. I have a top 10 list up here for the things I liked the most. Thanks for reading, if you made it to the end, and if you didn't, you won't read me saying "Fuck you". Seeing as this is the end of the year, I suppose this is my "Summary of the year" blog. So I'll shout out to MB, Hamz, Sweep, VGK and Claude. I guess I better mention KaosAngel aswell, for having such a Tsundere relationship with me.
It's Sunday afternoon, 12pm. You've just had lunch, and the day is yours. You're energetic (to an extent...), and you can do whatever you want all day. "Oh man, I should really play Game X" "Or wait, I could watch Anime Y" "Oh shit, I have movie Z to watch aswell" ... ...
"Well, I guess I'll just lie down for a little while, put some music on, and think about the best way to spend my day" It's now 5pm. "Oh heck, I should really put dinner on soon, and I could do with putting that laundry in the machine. I'll just finish watching this youtube video, then I'll get to it" It's now 10pm. "Oh well, I didn't get much done, but I'll just pick up next time and really go to it" It's 1am, and you're still on message boards. You fall asleep, and you've eaten 5 cakes, and moved 3 dvd cases 2 feet to the left, because "It's tidier".
If this describes you, then hey, welcome to the modern world of technology. This has happened to me a lot recently, where I intend to do all this stuff, but then I end up doing literally nothing, and chastising myself at the end of the day. I'd have finished the day, and I've done 5 games of Starcraft 2, where I don't get BETTER at the game, because I fucking stomped all the people I drew. I suppose in a way, it's the sheer overwhelming nature of modern gaming, the ease of piracy, and growing up (I know, I know, to younger people, that kind of word is sacrilege, but it happens). Take for example this:
How am I meant to realistically choose which one of these to go for next? I suppose in a way, it's my own fault, however, it's the sheer blanket effect of the internet that brings on this unbearably hard hitting choice. As someone with a good PC, PS3, Wii, DS, all that shit, things come at you so fast, so furious, that you can't help but just play something for half an hour, think "Oh hey this is cool, but I'll come back later when I have more time"
How do you people combat this string of what I can only call "Gamer apathy", although I guess it'd be more appropriate to discuss it in terms such as "Oversaturation and ease of obtaining modern media" ?
On the other hand, my I'm going over to my girlfriends folks tomorrow for dinner, and I'm being treated to: Chicken caccitore, and Italian spicy chicken stew of sorts with chicken, chick peas, olives , and a Lemon Meringue Pie for desert.
I meant to make this blog earlier, but I lost the images, which ended up on my desktop in a folder called "Snapzzz", which is probably why I forgot to upload them. What could possible BE IN THERE?!
Anyway, I had to move out AGAIN because it's time for University again. Let's do this!
This is a shot of the bathroom as you come in, and my SWEET carribean scene towel.
This is the rest of the bathroom. The toilet is basically in the bottom left of the picture, I'm not taking a picture of JUST THAT...yet.
This is the long side of the Kitchen. The oven is where everything goes down. You might not think so, but I'm a master cook.
This is the close side of the kitchen. The far thing is the fridge/freezer. It's where all the meat goes. I like that place.
This is the view of my room as you enter. Please excuse the mass exodus of biscuit wrappers in the bin.
That's where most of the magic happens. Beside tabley cabinet thing which is filled with books, glasses, keys and shit. Basically if I'm going to get robbed, that's where all the best and most important things are. I even have a big lolly in there.
This is where the "MAGIC" happens. I will let you guess what magic is. It's probably the exact thing you think, then the exact opposite.
This is where the TV and most of the vidya game bits happen. I will take this time to deliver a mini FEAR 2 review. Satisfying guns, but the jumping kick was pretty shit...#FLTG . Also clothes!
We all know what happens here. Moving on!
And here's some weird Japanese candy I got when a friend went down to a festival in London. They're like...chewits with crunchy bits inside. Would definetely recommend!
Well, that's the blog I was meant to make weeks ago when I moved in, but I guess better late than never. What about you, fellow University goers, or even crusty older people. How are you living? Or what's up?
I just got in, and even though it's pretty early, like half 11, I'm already fully in wobbly vision, and the fish and chippery wasn't open, so I had to make my own dfinenr when I got home, which was totall bullshit.
some guy wasked me if I wanted to go to a toga party when I was at a sci-fi anime bar tonight, and I didn't even konw hwo to respond to him. It was the first sci fic society tonight, and everyone seemed kinda nice. There was a pretty shitty moment where we all got carded on the door (for some reason), and this dude didn't get let in. I felt pretty fucking bad for him, but at the same time, I was already half way in, and he was with one of the girls who turned up that night, so I think they had a good night. I made a joke which implied homeboy would get blown in an alley by her, and I genuinetly hope that stands. I don't think they'll ever come back, we kinda ditched them.
And I never thought I'd be that person who saw my ex in a bar and felt super awkward,m but it totally happened tonight, and I didn't know what to do. I kind amade eye contact, and it was like "Oh shit thats totally them". After waitin for them to hit the bar, they bever did, so I hust thought "fuck it then", and came home.
for some reason, I can't take my shoes off, and there is a pizza in the oven. I will probably regret tihs in the morning.
I see a lot of threads on Giantbomb which often begin with someone asking for an anime recommendation, being ridiculed down to "Anime is for little tiny babys", having a brief interlude with "Your favourite show sucks, shut up", then the thread ends.
I figured that as someone who has seen quite a lot of things over the years, I might be able to come up with some sort of list for people who aren't really into it, but have always been a bit curious as to whether or not they'd like it. I'll say this up front. There's nothing wrong with watching anime. Don't let people tell you that it's bad, or you're a bad person, because it's a question of taste. If someone says they hate you and you're a weeaboo? Kindly say "Okay, sure thing!", and get on with your day, because their enjoyment should never be tied to yours. It's a medium, like games, movies or novels, not a genre, like many people wildly assume. Introductions aside, let's get on with things! I'll break it down into genres, and attempt to give, in my opinion, the flagships of each respective genre. Please bear in mind, this is personal opinion-things that after watching a LOT, I have come to realise is probably the best of it's respective genre. As always, your mileage may vary!
Comedy is a really hard genre to really recommend any one person a specific thing, regardless of the medium type. Do you like cute moe shenanigans, or more slapstick comedy? It's hard to really quantify what makes a good comedy show, so I have selected- Cromartie High School
What makes Cro High so incredibly funny is the diverse cast of characters, and wildly varying shenanigans they often get into. Don't get this mixed up with general high school tomfoolery. These aren't your usual adorable little girls discussing chocolate cornets. Cro High is a school for delinquents, and one student, who COULD be considered the protagonist, who is misplaced into this school. Whether it's the mysterious Mechazawa family, the student who is the toughest kid in school but gets motion sickness, or the mind blowing musical number early on, it's hard to watch Cro High without finding something you're not into. Dubbed or subbed, you're in for a treat!
I had a hard time again coming up with this. Trying to balance accessibility for newer people with personal favourites made me change my mind a lot. Do I go with a mindfuck show like Serial Experiments Lain, or a more methodical show like Mushi Shi? In the end, I settled on Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
Now, people might contest the legitimacy of the genre classification here, but I think in terms of a meaningful and thoughtful show, it really exemplifies how well a story can be written that perplexes the audience, and leaves them constantly thinking about not only the story in terms of plot development, but also on a more philosophical level. SAC revolves around the mysterious Section 9, a ghost branch of the government who are investigating the cyber terrorist known only as "The Laughing Man". Featuring incredible character developments, and an afforementioned implicit thought process, SAC is a must watch. Substitute with "Ghost in the Shell" if you're feeling feisty.
This is a weird genre to define. I suppose the main focus of the show isn't one specific overarching plotline, or indepth character development. It's more to do with the exploration of a fantastical world, using a sense of magic realism as the driving force of the show. A show in which the world that the show takes place in plays as big of a part as the characters and plot themselves. Naturally, there was only one show I could pick for this. Mushi Shi
Mushishi revolves around the bugmaster Ginko, as he travels the world, finding "Mushi" that plague people. The world that Ginko travels, and the people that he meets are the stars of the show, as there is no real focus point throughout the show, other than for the sake of showing a natural and realistic feeling world. Whether Ginko is helping a girl who is infected with a Mushi that takes her eyesight, one who is the source of the entire village rusting over or the man who chases rainbows, Mushi-Shi is a tour-de-force of pure visual and audible splendour. The kind of show where you'd watch 2/3 episodes at a time, and relax with it.
Thrillers are something in which the focal point of the narrative revolves around some kind of murder, or mysterious intrigue, but in a more real world scenario. A show in which you're on the edge of your seat, and you never want to put it down, always faced with cliffhangers and continuing storylines, like a good book. In light of this analysis, I guess the best thing I can really recommend is Death Note
Death Note revolves around Japanese student "Light Yagami", as he discovered a notebook, which when a persons name is written into it, they will die. While this sounds a simple enough concept, the true joy in the narrative is the rise and fall of Yagami as he destroys his own life, and those around him in his rise for power. People will endlessly debate about whether after a certain point, the series detracts in quality, but this isn't the place for that, ignore them. What can be said however, is that Death Note is a powerful thriller in which you always feel just ONE step behind the true nature and intentions of the characters. Naturally, you have the dramatic irony as the viewer, but the revelations as the show goes on are outstanding.
Super large world explodey robots
Yeah yeah, I know, giant mecha robots isn't really a genre, but in a way, there's enough shows about them to justify this. Plus, I'm the one writing, so deal with it! How could I pick anything but Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann
If you've seen TTGL, you'd know why it has to be recommended to anyone. TTGL shows the plight of Simon and his blood brother Kamina, as they break free of their oppressive lifestyle, being forced to live underground for fear of the vicious "Beastmen" who live on the earths surface. However, after finding a "Ganmen" robot, they make their way to the surface, where they meet other humans, and begin to rebel against the monstrous beasts. What follows is something that really has to be seen to be believed. Suffice to say, they go from underground, to above ground, to the air, space, universe and beyond. Outstanding visual quality and jaw dropping music are what really set this apart from others in its genre, like Gundam. Not to say the incredibly well established Gundam is inferior to TTGL, but as this is a blog introducing anime as a gateway to people, TTGL is the easier watch. Who the hell do you think I am?
That's it for now! Next time, we'll focus on
Slice of Life
And maybe more! Everything I described today comes in Subtitled or Dubbed editions. As a rule, I'd stick with subtitles. It retains much of the purity that the dubs can sometimes take out of the final product, and all in all, often tells the better story. However, I know subtitles aren't for everyone, so find something you like. Check your local listings, as always. Comments will be well received, but let's try not to argue or fall down into spoiler territory, as I know these things often do.
I guess I'll post this to the forums, but I expect a lot of tomfoolery, and people feverently defending something they've never seen as "Stupid shit". If that's the case, please, if you can help it, try not to post in here. Your negativity only defines your arrogance, so if you don't have anything nice to say, please try another thread. Keep it civil people!
I haven't written a personal blog in a while, because for the most part, this websites community is pretty self indulgent, and nobody cares what people write on the internet. That old trope. But I wanted to just share a couple of things with you, I guess, that I'm kind of into.
I've been playing King's Bounty: The Legend recently, and it's pretty great, but it's really fucking hard. It's essentially fantasy battle chess. You control 5 groups of units, which range from Knights, to Swordmans, Archers, then more bizarre units like Polar Bears, Gorgonites, Titans, Griffins and other such fantasy bollocks. It's a great game. The RPG element is good. Deep enough where you'll have to plan your fights, but easy enough where you can pick it up and just fight some bad mans. A great game, you might enjoy it if you like Fantasy RPGS, Griffins fighting Wolves or hex based RTS. Besides that, I'm honestly not playing too many games these days. TF2 is always a little guilty pleasure, but I only really play enough per day to unlock a weapon, which leads to a hat. I got my first one last week, which was the Engineers Safe N' Sound. It's pretty shit, but it looks alright I guess. I'm sure I can find someone to trade for the medic goggles if the trading ever comes in.
I guess outside of that, I've recently watched the first season of Twin Peaks. It was pretty great. The music was spectacular, and the FBI dude was amazing. Such an interesting character, I think I need to watch season 2 soon, I guess I'll get on that shit. I've kind of been watching anime on/off. I recently picked up Bleach, and got up to Soul Society, but fell out of it. Not that I dislike it, I've just been too busy.
However, something I have been doing recently, which took about 3/4 weeks, is reading One Piece. That was a fucking tour de force of emotions. Arbasta was brilliant, but Water 7/ Enies Lobby were the absolute high point of any shonen I've read. However, the recent Whitebeard War saga was out of this world. It had Ace and Whitebeard, so I was without a doubt sold. One Piece is brilliant, you should all read it. It's basically an incredible pirate adventure series with incredibly deep character development. Also Ace!
Finally, I guess the most IMPORTANT THING is that I'm moving next week. I went to pick up my keys today, and got entirely lost on the way. I overshot by about 4 miles (on foot no less), but finally found it. It's absolutely spectacular. It's huge, and the kitchen and bathroom are excellent. I will make a new blog when I move in properly. I'm planning on moving half my shit on Wednesday, then the rest on Saturday. I'm very excited, moving is always nerve wrecking, but it's a week before uni starts and I'm moving in with my best friend. Let the good times roll!
How have you all been? Anything interesting happening for you that's similar to me? Is anyone else moving back to Uni shortly and excited/nervous aswell? What have you all been playing/watching?
So, I was meant to move in with a friend for the third year of University in a privately owned flat/halls, for the convenience of location (For the last 2 years I've travelled from home due to money issues being far too high). However, I hit a minefield, again.
Because I'm a 4th year Uni student going into third year (Had to drop out in first due to illness), I'm receiving less money this year. My fear is that if I move out, I'll BARELY be able to manage it. I mean, I'll maybe JUST ABOUT have enough money to get by, but when I spoke to a buddy abuot it today, he said that's probably not the best idea. If I'm broke, that leads to stress, which leads to a poor work output. Not ideal for my final year project, naturally.
I'm sure I can get out of my flat contract if I phone them, losing only my deposit, however, I'm feeling incredibly shitty about my friend. We were excited to be moving in together, and now I might have to pull out simply because I can't afford it with the money I'm getting this year. It means I'd have to travel in from home, but that's only an hour a day on a train, and I'd save a metric ton of money.
If I did pull out, she wouldn't lose her flat or whatever, it's privately owned halls, it'd all still be fine. The issue I'm wrestling with is kind of...moral I guess, I feel bad about pulling out on her, we both really were looking forward to this, but as mentioned, with the most minimal financial backing, I just don't think I can make it.
Welcome to the NHK says: I hate the dog I want to make battle monopoly all the peices have 3 moves and you get a move turn if yuo roll doubles like, the car has speed boost so you can go double what you roll the hat is classy, so you can get 10% off buying a house, and it stacks cannon can hit enemys and make them lose a turn etc i have a lot of freetime