Let's discuss Avengers: Infinity War -- a movie BOUND to make you feel so good!

January 29, 2015

So How Good is Shonen Jump, Really?

I’ve been thinking about it, and I’m starting to suspect Soul Eater is my favorite anime.

Well, one of my favorites, I guess.  Gundam Build Fighters and JoJo are both making their way up there.  But in terms of preferences bred from experience?  From nostalgia?  I’ve got to give it to Soul Eater.  It had pretty much everything I could ever want in an anime: crazy cool characters.  Style in spades.  A sense of energy and spirit, be it in the fights or just some comedic beats.  And even if you look past the macabre elements -- themselves worth plenty of praise -- it’s worth noting that despite the title, Soul Eater’s real main character is ostensibly the super fighting bookworm Maka…i.e. the fabled “strong female character”.

Maybe I’ll get around to watching the anime in full one of these days.  It’s certainly an easier choice over some of the stuff that’s popped up this season.  There’s some good stuff, sure, but I gave Kantai Collection a look, and it’s a wonder that my skull is still intact.  Plenty of anime bloggers have noted the absolute onslaught of magical school/harem/halfhearted fantasy shows out and about; I’ve read their posts, and the content for some of them is the sort of thing that would make a fan drop the medium like an angry snake.

Which brings us to…well, you read the title, didn’t you?

January 26, 2015

On Dead or Alive and Shortchanged Heroines

Disclaimer: all things considered, you can’t really call me a fan of the Dead or Alive franchise.  The only one I’ve ever really played is DOA4, and while I had plenty of fun with it, I’ve since moved on to…well, pretty much every other fighting game this generation.  I skipped out on DOA5 in its entirety, and even with the new editions that have popped up, there’s never been much of an impetus to jump in.

Still, I kept an eye on the news surrounding Last Round because of the prospect of a new playable character.  Who would it be?  I mean, Ultra Street Fighter 4 blew it with its hyped “fifth fighter” by just serving up Cammy clone Decapre, so surely competitor Team Ninja/Koei Tecmo wouldn’t make the same mistake, right?  And the potential was limitless; rumors and theories about a fighting female pirate made the rounds, so maybe -- oh, it’s just a schoolgirl.  Well, that’s still something totally fresh and interestizzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…

January 22, 2015

Kantai Collection: A Miserable Little Pile of Attributes

You know, a lot of times I find myself wishing that I was good at art.  Historically, my skill with arts and crafts is such that it takes me three times longer to do what everyone else already has…only instead of having something of insane quality to show for it, my products look like something made by a curiously-intelligent two-year-old covered in baseball mitts.  It’s a problem for sure, but that hasn’t stopped me from at least trying; what’s in my head will never match what shows up on a page or screen, but I can at least get close.

I pretty much have to, because I’ve been trying to redesign (and have redesigned) a bunch of my characters.  Plenty of them are in a good spot, but there’s one I’ve struggled with for a while -- to the point where she’s both the one who’s been iterated the most and the one who’s in the direst need of it.  So for a while now, I’ve been scouring the internet for images, art, and resources to give me some ideas.  Inspiration -- a sort of loose guideline to help me nail something down before I go insane.  I think I’ve come up with something, actually…buuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuut there’s an issue I’m more aware of than ever.

Which brings us -- however randomly -- to Kantai Collection.

January 19, 2015

So How Good is Barbie, Really?

What’s this?  A post on a brand of toys?  That’s gotta be a first for me.

Well, I suppose it’s more tangential than anything.  I haven’t actually bought or played with any Barbie dolls (that I know of…), but I need to get a post like this up and running.  The reason for that is because in order to talk about other stuff -- things that I’ve had in mind since before this past December -- a quick look at Barbie and her plastic empire is in order.  Plus, I could use a bit of an outsider’s perspective -- so if there are any lovely ladies out there who’ve stumbled upon this post and/or have a vested interest in Barbie, here’s your chance to weigh in.  Or, you know, if you’ve got sisters or nieces or friends or whatever.

Okay?  Okay.  

Now then.  Time to dive head-first into the madness.

Or, alternatively, hold on to your butts.  (Here's hoping the new Jurassic Park movie isn't a total load.)

January 15, 2015

Guilty Gear Xrd is STILL way too cool.

Hey, did you know I really like this game?  I do.  And you should too, because it’s so freakin’ great.  So let’s talk about why while I fight my hardest to avoid choking to death on my unbridled joy.

I’m gonna need something to keep my throat clear.  Like a longsword.

Also, I need to learn how to swallow swords.

January 12, 2015

Guilty Gear Xrd is way too cool.

Hey, welcome to Cross-Up.  Hope you had some happy holidays, and here’s to another good year for all of us.

Now let’s stop talking about stupid stuff nobody cares about and move in to Guilty Gear Xrd -- because oh my God Guilty Gear Xrd is out, so let’s all shut up and talk about it.


January 5, 2015

Let's discuss Kamen Rider Gaim (Part 3).

(Cross-Up is on hiatus, sort of, but not really!  I’m going to try and take it easy over the next few weeks, because it’s the winter holiday season and I half-expect nobody to be around on the internet.  Things will get back in gear sometime in January, but until then?  If you ARE here, then enjoy a handful of high-quality filler posts.  It’ll be fun, presumably!)

Like I’ve said before, Gaim has been on my mind for a good while now -- even before I started working on these posts.  It’s not even close to my favorite Kamen Rider installment (that honor goes to OOO, the first one I watched to completion), but if things had gone differently Gaim would have taken the top spot.  And I’m all right with that; part of the reason I check out other KR installments is because I’m waiting for the series that boots OOO from the throne -- the one show that lets me say “I don’t just like OOO because it was my first.” 

That’ll happen eventually, I hope.  But it hasn’t yet.  That’s not to devalue Gaim, because even if I can point to problems I had with it -- and let’s be real, there ARE problems -- I can still enjoy it as a whole.  There are just things that any given viewer needs to consider.

And the one thing I kept considering from the show’s start to its finish is this: We Madoka now.

Let me say this to start:
I am fairly filling this post with SPOILERS!  So…you know, be wary of those.  It’ll help you in the long run, I imagine.