Kids + squids = virtual brilliance?! Let's discuss Splatoon!


July 30, 2015

Street Fighter V: Headcanon Edition


Not to play armchair manager, but there’s a part of me that feels like it’s wrong for Daigo “The Beast” Umehara to play anyone but Ryu.  I’m not about to go doubting his skills or anything -- even if he was in a coma, the guy could play Street Fighter better than I ever could -- but you’d think that a guy who put so much into the franchise as well as embodies the tireless wanderer would have found his soul mate.  But in his recent EVO showings, he’s picked guys like Yun and Evil Ryu.  And I’m pretty much left saying “Is this it?  Has Daigo been corrupted by the power of the Dark Hadou?”

Well, it’s not like he’s turned evil in real life (or has he?!), so he’s free to do as he pleases.  But still, the allure of the character is just too great in Street Fighter IV’s latest -- and probably final -- iteration.  His damage output is incredible, he has nearly all of the tools Ryu has (and then some), and it only takes one hit for him to get started, i.e. melt an enemy’s life bar down to zero.  It’s almost poetic that one EVO had Daigo and his Evil Ryu beaten by John Choi and his normal Ryu, but that didn’t stop The Beast from sticking with the Dark Hadou.

So now I have to wonder: once Street Fighter IV gets phased out and the sequel gains traction, what does that mean for what’s ostensibly the most heinous power in the canon?  Frankly, I’m hoping for a lot.

July 27, 2015

What’s the Best-Looking Game You’ve Ever Seen?


There’s been a lot to talk about since this past E3, but you know what’s piqued my interest the most?  Street Fighter 5 (which should be obvious by now, but whatever).  As I’ve said in the past, the only trailers/footage I’ve grown to trust is what comes from fighting games, because they give the best indication of what the final product will actually be.  That’s not to say that SF5 hasn’t changed since its introductory trailer, but Ryu could throw fireballs then, and he’ll probably be able to throw them in the full version.  No broken promises there, I hope.

There’s been a deluge of info and footage on the game recently thanks to Eventhubs and friends, and right now it’s looking really good.  I mean that from a gameplay perspective, naturally, but even when I watch non-HD, non-60fps videos on YouTube, I still can’t help but think, “Wow, what a good-looking game.”  I think what clinched it for me was seeing Birdie in action; his Super is at once a weaponized joke and a striking display.

So with the stage now set, let’s talk about DEM GRAFFECTS -- and prove just how shallow we can all be.

July 23, 2015

Let’s “discuss” Batman: Arkham Knight (Part 2).


I thought about starting this post with a reference to the 60’s TV show, but then I remembered that this post was originally going to be just one instead of split into two.  So let’s not make this thing so long that it goes into three.

You know what’s next, right?  Yeah.  Let’s talk about the Batmobile.

July 20, 2015

Let’s “discuss” Batman: Arkham Knight (Part 1).


All right.  Let’s talk about fans.  Not Batman fans, mind you.  Just regular old ceiling fans.

Don’t worry.  I know almost exactly what I’m doing.

July 16, 2015

Street Fighter V (Oh, and EVO Too)


It’s worth noting upfront that this post was written in advance of EVO 2015, AKA the latest installment of one of the biggest fighting game tournaments in the world.  It’s kind of a shame, because it’d be cool to report on a couple of the blow-by-blow matches, or revel in the hype that’s sure to transpire (anybody remember the Garireo vs. Dogura grand finals in BlazBlue?  I sure do).  On the other hand, this post is more about Street Fighter V than it is about EVO, so it evens out.

I’m also working under the assumption that there’ll be a new character announced there at some point, so this might be outdated mere minutes after it goes live.  So hey, maybe we’ll find out who that guy at the end of Ken’s reveal trailer was supposed to be.  On that note?  Seriously, guys?  You look at that him and say, “Oh, that’s E. Honda” or “Yeah, Akuma’s back” when he’s got almost nothing in common between them?  Come on.  Let’s at least try to use a little reason, yes?

But enough of that.  Let’s get right to it.

July 13, 2015

Thank You, Mr. Iwata


They say that when big news drops, whatever you were doing gets frozen in time -- like there’s a snapshot that’ll always be a reminder of where you were when it happened.  In my case?  I had just plopped down in front of my computer after some unfortunate business involving a dog, a bathroom, and a fair bit of wiping.

Had I known what had happened, or what I was about to read, I would have dropped everything beforehand to say a prayer, or light a candle, or something.  But I didn’t.  Now I know what happened, and just how big of a loss we’ve suffered.

So.  I guess I’d better make up for it, huh?

July 9, 2015

Let’s discuss Splatoon (Part 2).

So I have a theory that everyone in Splatoon is secretly a cannibal.

Okay, maybe not everyone -- because I have my doubts that shopkeepers like Sheldon and Crusty Sean could even take a good bite out of someone.  But you’ve seen the Inklings by now, right?  Every time they open their mouths, they show off some seriously sharp chompers.  TV personalities Callie and Marie casually talk about eating seafood, and both of them wear sushi-style hats.  Chalk this up to headcanon, but are we 100% sure that Inklings that lose an Ink Battle aren’t eaten alive as punishment?

Maybe death just has no meaning for these undersea people (who live on the surface for some reason).  They reincarnate endlessly during an Ink Battle, after all.  But it may go further than that; lose a battle and go back to the lobby, and you’re a different color than when you started -- so maybe the losing Inkling got devoured, and you start playing as a substitute.  Or if you win and go back to the lobby, you play as an Inkling who dug your original Inkling’s fresh styles, and adopted his/her outfit to pay tribute (and try to look cool).  That’s probably not the case, but hey.  It gets the gears going.

In some ways, that might be what makes Splatoon secretly great -- because even in the absence of an hours-long narrative, I can’t help but feel excited by the game’s world.    Learning more about it?  That’d be preeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetty coooooooooooooooooool.

July 6, 2015

Let’s discuss Splatoon (Part 1).



Really?  Are you actually reading this?  Like, you’re seriously ready to read a post on Splatoon?

You know I could pretty much say #GoodGuyNintendo and end things right here, right?  Is there anything more that needs to be said?  Is there?

*sigh* All right, let’s do this.

July 2, 2015

Anime Was (Probably Not) a Mistake

It’s worth noting right of the bat that the whole “anime was a mistake” meme was based on a misattribution of a Hayao Miyazaki quote/interview, so it’s not as if the whole medium is being condemned by the most notable and credible geniuses in the field.  Well, not directly, at least.  Except when they kind of are.  But not really!  But sort of?

Well, let’s cut right to the heart of the matter.  No, anime was not a mistake.  I know it’s easy to be down on anything and everything these days and seek solace in the past, but even if anime has its problems these days, it’s not as if the medium is worthless.  Or, if you prefer, DOOOOOOOOOOOMED.

That all said?  MAN, are there some serious issues.  So let’s talk about them -- by which I mean it’s time to vent my frustration over the severe lack of little brothers.  Seriously, anime.  Why only little sisters?

June 29, 2015

What Makes You “Feel” for a Story?

So I saw The Lego Movie not too long ago, and I’ve never been filled with more rage.

Not because I didn’t like it, mind you; I think it’s amazing.  But if you’ve been reading this blog for long, you may know that when it was in theaters, I didn’t go to see it; instead, I went to go see the 2014 remake/reboot/repugnance that was RoboCop, as tribute for my brother’s birthday.  Calling it a miserable experience would be an understatement.  But now I’m mad all over again because instead of going to see a movie with incredible visuals, impressive action, intelligent design, and a final act that puts the whole story in a brand new light, I and other people saw cinematic tripe.  And unlike me, some people willingly chose to see RoboCop Because nostalgia.  Or because “it’s mature”.

My blood’s about to boil through my skin.  So let’s move on to the topic that’s been on my mind: how stories get you to feel something.  Besides a blinding maelstrom of fury, of course.