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

October 31, 2016

Shower Thoughts with Stardust Crusaders (Part 1)

Here’s an important question right off the bat: what is the difference between the Stands in JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders and the Personas from Persona 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1?

They’re extremely similar, so I don’t blame anyone for getting confused by the two.  Men and women tap into a mix of psychological and spiritual power to summon crazy-looking warriors to fight on their behalf.  Only a chosen few can manifest them; the rest are lucky to even see them.  Unreal powers are slung around as easily as a softball in a pickup game of catch.  They’ve been the centerpieces of multiple fighting games.  They’ve experienced no shortage of popularity over the years, if not a surge in fan interest.  Honestly, I’d say that at this point, the fact that there’s no dedicated JoJo X Persona game is an affront to every deity imaginable.  Magician’s Red vs. Take-Mikazuchi?  Come on, that’s easy money.

It should go without saying, but I’m a fan of both franchises -- and it just so happens that I’ve been grinding my way through as much JoJo as possible over the past few months.  As a result, I’ve finally done what thousands (if not millions) of fans have done already, and completed Part 3 -- Stardust Crusaders.  And now I can tackle the question for myself.  Not the question of “is this any good”, oh no.  (Though I’ll be doing that anyway at some point.)  No, I think it’s time for me to split hairs on an ultimately inconsequential issue.

I have a theory -- a shaky theory, but a theory nonetheless.  The Personas are what you really are deep down.  The Stands are what you want to be…but fail to be regardless.

October 27, 2016

Top 10(ish) Cool Video Game Ladies -- ACT II

Okay, so quick show of hands: who here thinks that the gaming industry has improved recently?

I know it may seem otherwise with every other post I write, but I’m glad to argue that there’s been progress.  Indie titles are doing the lord’s work, as usual.  Some of the biggest releases of the last year or two have tried to push the envelope in various ways.  There’s innovation to be truly excited about; would you ever have guessed that Nintendo, of all companies, would release an online multiplayer shooter and instantly have it become a success?

Yes, things are better than they were.  But of course, they could be even better.  There’s still a lot of work that needs to be done on multiple fronts, with the treatment (or even usage) of female characters well among them.  We want a better future, and people are trying to get there however they can.  That’s true even if some days it seems like “progress” is made while seemingly wearing a suit of armor during a triathlon.

But in order to see where we’re going, we have to know where we’ve been.  So it’s time to do something I’ve never, ever done before…except for the last time I did it.

October 24, 2016

Do Me a Solid: Multiplayer Game Arrange

So did you know that The Wonderful 101 has a multiplayer mode?

I did.  I’ve known it for a while, in fact -- probably around the time it was first released, since it IS featured on the back of the box.  But this is a Platinum game we’re talking about, and I’d imagine that they’re not exactly famous for their multiplayer suites (Anarchy Reigns aside).  As a result, it came as an absolute shock to my brother and buddy that there was a 4-player multiplayer mode in the game -- and the latter barely even knew what The Wonderful 101 was.  So for the first time ever, all three of us got to see what it entailed…for the short time we actually sat down with it, but hey.  I’ll take it.

It’s not exactly an expansive mode, as far as I can tell.  If you’ve played the main game -- running through levels with a munchkin-sized squadron, and beating down aliens by building giant, supercharged weaponry -- then imagine that with up to three of your pals in a string of missions/score attack.  I had a blast with it, if only because it reminded me of how much I love the game (and need to replay it).  I have a hunch that my buddy had no idea what was going on for most of it, while dear old big brother seemed actively frustrated by it…though he got a kick out of using Unite Gun to shoot gangsta style.

Hopefully I can convince the two of them to play it again someday.  But more importantly?  I think it’s high time for me to build a bigger collection of multiplayer games -- and that’s where you come in.  Get hyped, maybe.

October 17, 2016

Hijacked by Politics -- ACT II

Well, I didn’t think I’d be doing this again so soon.

And why would I?  I don’t know politics.  I haven’t been paying attention to any of it until a few months ago, and I get the feeling I’ll go straight back to my natural state -- one of pure, blissful, drool-mouthed ignorance -- when this election cycle is over.  But it’s not over yet.  So that means that I’m checking the r/politics subreddit daily (sometimes multiple times a day) to check out the latest news.  Inevitably, that means I’ve got a pulse on one scandal after another, and one event after another.  I hardly even need to go that far; the debates thus far, AKA the most official of the official instances, have told me more than enough.

They’ve told me that this whole “race for the White House” is a mess.  Like…is this what politics have always been like?  One absurdity after another, featuring men and women in their 50s, 60s, or even 70s shouting at each other like they’re back on the playground and refusing to acknowledge that they got tagged?  Is it common to feel like no progress has been made and no understanding has been gained, to the point where legit issues get buried and people just end up trusting whoever they were going to vote for that much more?

I don’t know.  Then again, I guess it doesn’t bother me that much -- mostly because that stuff isn’t what this post is about.

*sigh* Let’s talk about Donald Trump.

October 13, 2016

Power Rangers Colon Movie Trailer Analysis for Blogging

All right, look.  Normally I wouldn’t do this sort of thing, because I’m pretty sure I’ve said in the past, in writing (or close enough to it) that I think trailers are bullshit.  They lie, they delude, they misrepresent, and more -- all for the sake of trying to strong-arm viewers into getting hyped.  And while there are some good trailers out there, too many of them nowadays aren’t.  Or maybe they’ll be great, but they’ll be much better than the actual movie/game/whatever coming up.  I’ve always thought it best to judge the actual product based on gathered information and reviews, weighted with personal inference -- and at some point, an actual, direct look at said product.

So I’m not usually one to get sucked into trailer hype.  And I’m also not the type to pour over every second or every frame to find some hidden clue that’ll “change everything”.  Honestly, just making this post feels like a dirty act; it’s like I’ve suddenly thrown away my dignity for a big dumb clickbait article (“This One Weird Trick Will Win Any Power Rangers Fan’s Heart!  Saban Hates It!”).  But as a tokusatsu fan to this day -- and beyond -- and as someone with more than a little interest in storytelling -- no matter the form -- I’m making an exception.  I feel compelled to weigh in, so I will.  Just this once.  Don’t get used to it.

Okay.  So here we go.

October 10, 2016

So How Good is Capcom, Really?

Well, the book’s officially been closed.  As of September 22nd, Street Fighter V has assembled all of its first-wave DLC characters.  It started off with Alex, went to Guile, gave us Ibuki and Balrog, dropped Juri, and now let players use the Illuminati executive Urien for the first time in well over a decade.  Unless you count Capcom Fighting Evolution (i.e. the game where Ryu fought a squid), but in terms of mainline releases?  Mr. Aegis Reflector is back to do what he does best: throw out energy walls and remain averse to clothes. 

But from what I’ve heard, Urien came with a less-than-welcome surprise for PC users.  Apparently, an anti-cracking (i.e. anti-cheating) measure was included, and it involved giving the game kernel access.  So on top of causing game-breaking bugs, it would’ve been entirely possible for said game -- and Capcom by extension -- to control a person’s PC; more importantly, it would’ve let the baddies in the online space exploit the game to reap whatever they wanted.  Not exactly ideal, that -- so it’s no wonder that Capcom rolled that back near-instantly.  That’s good news, I guess, but it makes you wonder why they did it in the first place.  Incompetence?  Laziness?  Panic?  Contempt for their fans?

I don’t want to think the worst of Capcom.  But, sadly, it looks like that’s the world we live in now.

October 6, 2016

On the Mysterious Waif (and Friends)

Against my better judgment, I decided to try and play Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness again.


…Didn’t go well, guys.  Didn’t go well.

October 3, 2016

Who’s the Sexiest Character in Gaming?

Not to start this post off with a controversial opinion, but I have to be honest: I think underboob is the worst thing ever.

It’s fine if other people like it, of course.  But for me?  It actively makes anything it’s attached to demonstrably worse.  I remember when BlazBlue was first bumping around and it revealed squirrel girl Makoto in her school uniform -- pretty OK, more or less.  But then when her combat form was revealed for her stint in Continuum Shift -- notably, as one of the very first DLC-specific fighters -- she showed off no shortage of underboob.  And I thought, “I’m done with this character.”

It just strikes me as trashy -- and tryhard, while we’re at it.  It’s an unnatural attempt to get a rise out of others, with means that are entirely unnecessary.  Like, we can all agree that breasts of any kind are fine on their own, right?  Why go out of your way to highlight them in such an awkward way?  Or is it just a means to show that the woman in question doesn’t know how to wear clothes?  Either way, I think it’s the worst.  I’m pretty biased, though, thanks to that one time on the night of a full moon.

But let’s not dwell on it.  Let’s talk about sexy characters instead.