Anime Vice » Blogs

| |

Welcome to October 2014 Monthly community thread! I'm Taka, your wiki mod who writes these blog to highlight successes and projects. It was a busy week due to midterms which is done. I'm still busy with papers and other things. This blog will be completed in a few days, a section at a time. I apologize for having this incomplete at that time.

Wiki

Policies

  • No new wiki policies were added.

Helpful Guides

Over 1,000 Points!

We have four wiki editors reaching over 1,000 points this month. Please give them a round of applause.

New Wiki Projects

  • Terra Formars - A team wiki project between adictoalatrama and Takashichea was formed on Oct. 27.
  • Korra - the project was renewed for Book 4. Acura, Yusuke52, and Takashichea are the active editors as of now.

Battle

Policies

Characters added were Bruce and God (Bruce Almighty), Superman-Prime One Million, The Mask

Ongoing Community Projects

RPG

Policies

  • No new RPG policies were added.

Helpful Guides

New RPG Projects

  • Happy Hour - A story that takes place at Bill's Blues Bar. Current players are Justalittlegirl and WayBig1010101, and their characters are Chase and Huntsman.
  • The Cave (RP) - A story about Gen who is dire need of help, being stranded at Sakurajima. Current players are Kuma (Gen), Justalittlegirl (Dan), WayBig1010101 (Jose), Lobos_Del_Rayo (Crow), Vapovile (Sid). Also see The Cave OOC.

Finished RPG Projects

Review

Othus Vice Videos

Katmic's Blogs

Anime and Manga Discussions

Hottest Threads

Overall Forums

Major Events

Tournaments

Conventions

| |

Howdy everyone! Well, it's a bit late to share experiences in the summer with October ending. It's better late than never. Things are busy when you have summer school and only 1 month and a half for break before fall semester. After working, I usually take breaks at night, doing a marathon on cartoons or playing games while checking for spam bots.

In this blog, I won't spoil anything. Everything will be brief. Just promoting various games and cartoons for the Movies & TV Club and Video Game Club. After getting midterms done this week, it's nice to blog and take off stress.

All of the games are on the PlayStation 3. I didn't have much Wii-U games that needed to completed.

Final Fantasy XIII-2

First off is Final Fantasy XIII-2. Lightning's game was actually my first Final Fantasy game in the franchise. I have no idea what compelled me to play this game first than the others. I did play the game earlier in the year, and I was lost for a moment when I got back into for the summer break.

Short Summary: After the first game, the sequel had retcon (might not be the right word) the first game's ending. Lightning disappeared and was fighting to save Etros. The game has you playing Lightning's sister, Serah, and a time traveler, Noel. The duo journey through time and alternative worlds to find Lightning.

The game is a different beast from its prequel. The first game focuses so much on customizing and leveling weapons while the 2nd game is more like Pokemon, raising your characters and your monster. It had tough puzzles. I still remember the clock puzzles took me the longest to do. While the leveling in the 2nd game is more easier than the first game, grinding for cash to buy items to level up your monsters was a bit challenging.

All in all, I love the 2nd game as much as the first one. I grew attached to the characters despite the plot not making a lick of sense to me. After beating the game, I was heartbroken by the ending. I thought if I collected all the fragments, I get a happier ending. It didn't happen.

Recommendation: You definitely have to play the first game. As a new Final Fantasy fan, I heard the game is a hit or miss with folks who played the earlier games. It depends on what you like in the RPG. For me, the combat system was a new experience for me. I'm so used to turn based combat in RPG games. This one uses a ATB gauge to determine how frequent you attack. FFXIII's story isn't as romantic and deep compared to the older RPGs as I heard from fans who loved FFVII, VIII, and X.

Walking Dead

I had bought this game for a long time since winter 2013. In fall of 2013, I dive into the Walking Dead TV series for the first time. I was never a horror fan, but something in Walking Dead hooked me. It was the drama and the characters. I opened this game in summer 2014 after mustering up the courage.

Short Summary: As a sheriff is escorting Lee to the prison, the police car crashes into one of the Walkers, their name for zombies in this franchise. Hell breaks loose as the zombie apocalypse takes the world quickly without any warning. Lee finds himself caring for Clementine, a young girl who was alone in a house and waiting for her parents. Deciding to protect her, Lee helps Clementine to find her parents. This is the tale of Lee's survival in this world.

This is one of most unique games I played in my life. I haven't played a lot of games, but this is an experience I never forget. The game is very interactive and caters to the choices you make. You have to examine your environment and your choices carefully. There wasn't much puzzle solving, but I did had times where I was stuck and couldn't progress through the game. I thought I made a lot of mistakes since I died a lot and killed my folks. After beating the game, I look up if there were alternative endings. I found out the endings don't really change much. It's a tragic, emotional driven game compared to most games I played. This game, Valkyria Chronicles, and Kingdom Hearts made me tear up a bit.

Recommendation: Even if you haven't read Walking Dead comics or watch the TV series, I think you can get into this game without prior experiences. It's a stand alone title without any much ties to the other media. If you love story and characters in horror games, you should try it. Walking Dead is not like Resident Evil which relies on combat or Silent Hill which relies on the location and making your character less powerful. Walking Dead's strength comes from the interactive choices, characters, and story. It turns out it wasn't as scary as I thought it would be. Silent Hill was much scarier than Walking Dead.

Kingdom Hearts 1.5

I got into the game back 2012 when I bought the PS2 for the first time. I didn't know what games to get for the PS2. My little sister thought Kingdom Hearts would be a good start. I think Kingdom Hearts got me into the RPG genre. Kingdom Hearts got me into Final Fantasy. It's strange because it got my little sister into FFVII while I somehow ended up trying Lightning's game. Fearing the used PS2 wasn't going to live much longer, I thought I buy this game to cherish the memories. That was before I heard Kingdom Hearts 2.5 was going to be released this winter 2014.

Short Summary: Kingdom Hearts is about Sora, Kairi, and Riku who live on Destiny Island. Feeling adventurous, the trio want to build a raft to explore the world beyond their tiny island. Suddenly, the gate is opened up which scatters everyone across different worlds. Sora winds up in Traverse Town where he joins Donald and Goofy to find his friends, Riku and Kairi.

The game play is action based, and it has sort of platforming element which I love. I'm used to Nintendo games such as Mario and Legend of Zelda. It combined exploration, platforming, and RPG with Disney and Final Fantasy cameos into one great package. The only main gripe I had was the targeting and maybe the camera angle. Every time I target, it ends up on a opponent I'm not facing. The characters and story are engaging. While the environment is a bit empty and not as engaging as the characters and story, there are lot of things to do such as collecting items and doing side quests.

Recommendation: With the Disney and Final Fantasy allure, you can get into the franchise that way. I also recommend the game if you loved action based RPG genre.

Squid Girl

While I was playing Walking Dead, I needed something happy to watch. Squid Girl filled that role.

Short Summary: Squid Girl had plans of invading the surface world. When she attacks someone's eatery, she ends up working for the beach house, paying for damages.

Recommendation: It's a comedic, slice of life series that is purely character driven. As with most comedic series, the only way to find out if you like it, you got to try the first episode.

Young Justice

I was not a comic book reader because I was mostly introduced to cartoon adaptations of comic books such as Batman the animated series and Spider-Man (1990's series). Being a Teen Titan fan, I was intrigued by another show focusing on young superhero/heroine teenagers. This was a stark contrast to Teen Titans cartoon series. Young Justice was a lot darker and had a bigger universe which deals with more DC characters and incorporates the Justice League. It was a huge, new experience for me.

At that time, I had new Korra to watch. Young Justice was one of the best shows on Cartoon Network. It was a shame that it was canceled. It had so much potential from its brilliant story telling and its diverse array of characters.

Young Justice revolves around Robin, Kid Flash, Speedy, and Aqua Lad who become heroes of their own after being wards/sidekicks. Out of the four, Robin, Kid Flash, and Aqua Lad form a team with others to take on missions from Batman and the Justice League. What I love about Young Justice was the covert operations they had. It was unlike the stuff I seen in my previous superhero cartoons.

I would recommend this series to folks who love superheroes shows that is a bit serious while having an engaging story and a great roster of characters.

Star Wars the Clone Wars

Last one for the summer was Star Wars. I had renewed Netflix because it had the last season, the lost episodes. Also, I wanted to watch any episodes I missed out back in high school. It was trip down memory lane. I haven't seen a lot of Star Wars film, but the TV series was how I got into the franchise.

I never did watch the animated film which serves as the precursor to the animated series. It didn't matter since I got adjusted to the series. Like Young Justice, the strength of this show comes from its story and characters. Though, the series revisits planets and areas a couple of times. The series' universe is huge as well as its character roster. You have quite a large selection of stories to watch. I believe you don't have to watch every episode. Each episode is a different story that is still connected to the main, overarching plot. Shame, that the series ended before it could reach a conclusion. I wanted to see how the series handle the end of the war.

Main Highlights

  • Seeing Asoka grow as a Jedi
  • Seeing how Anakin and his relationship with Padme endure so much conflicts
  • Finally, seeing the side to the clones and many folks affected by the war. Captain Rex and his clone troopers were memorable to me especially the last season which hints heavily to the future events. It's a bit tragic to see how it would turn out in the final period of the war.

If you are a new Star Wars fan, you get into this series without much problem. I got into it pretty well. There are references I missed because I didn't have background in the live action films. Those are bonus for the older fans.

Thank you everyone for reading.

Please share some recommendations here or at the Video Game and TV Club discussions. We definitely need to reach to each other and get folks to try new things that can be enjoyable and memorable.

| |


This chapter reminded me of the good old days of Bleach, before Aizen got tiresome, back when he was still the enigmatic villain the exact nature of whose goals and interests were shrouded in mystery.

All you needed to know about Aizen back then was that he wasn’t completely evil, merely focused upon achieving his goal. A better example might be Fate/Zero, where the exact nature of every conflict chose to ignore the good vs. evil cliché, instead presenting an amoral cast driven by there own personal interests.

My point, Magi is doing everything right in presenting the perfect villain for the series’ heroes.

THE CHAPTERS:
Judar and Hakuryuu embark upon the journey to kill Gyokuen.

MY THOUGHTS:

So we are most definitely in the past; this has to be a flashback of sorts, showing us the events that took place while Aladdin and group partook in their summit; I guess it makes sense, showing us exactly what happened and how Hakuryuu gained the power the defeat his mother rather than allowing speculation to thrive.

+The Good
I wrote a Blog Post a short while ago, giving my take on what it took to create a great villain; and I explained my disinterest in the complex villains of today, the excess of whiny child like antagonists with what had become cliché sad back stories, most of which where intended to attract sympathy to characters that were completely undeserving of pity.

Basically I lamented about the lack of true villains in the anime and manga, those bad guys that were truly bad, and who could truly pose a threat without the risk of them breaking down at the end of the arc; except that Magi, in these two chapters, showed that it is actually possible to create dark villains that are as sympathetic as they are threatening and engaging. 

Hakuryuu and Judar combine two facets of the common villain, coming off as both tragic and sympathetic even while operating in a dark persona driven only by evil.

Having fallen into depravity, Hakuryuu falls into the category of villains that are more or less evil for the sake of being evil.

Because, with a mind driven by dark rukh, Hakuryuu is now acting on instinct, and will commit evil with no remorse or thought, no different from the typical mindlessly evil villain.

Except this is a path that Hakuryuu chose to follow, having counted the cost, realized what he would lose by falling into depravity and choosing to take the plunge.

And that is what makes Hakuryuu and Judar better  than almost any other pair of villains in shonen; they are aware. They are not driven by an uncontrollable lust for blood or vengeance. There are no dark forces deceiving them into following their dark path, or at least there weren’t.

There is a cleverness in the manga’s choice of Djinn in this situation, with Belial allowing both young men an opportunity to fully scrutinize their souls, during which they saw the dark path before them, understood what it offered, admitted that the path of light indeed offered true hope and peace, and still chose to sink into the shadows of their dreams.

They will destroy the world not because they are misguided or unknowing; rather they understand the big picture, better than even Aladdin, and yet they choose to continue in their depravity. These are the sorts of villains I like, the type that are not likely to get talked off the ledge by the heroes when the final battle comes.

+The Bad.
This isn’t bad per say, merely a less flattering consideration, at least with regards to Alibaba; as the primary protagonist of the series, Alibaba is quickly becoming irrelevant and obsolete, far too quick and willing to follow anyone that will promise to save his friends and his home rather than taking any actual definitive action.

And considering the fact that Hakuryuu ranked far below Alibaba as far as interesting characters go in the past, he has come a long way in the time it has taken Alibaba to shift alliances haphazardly.

But maybe that is simply great story telling on the mangaka’s part, showing Alibaba’s failures before finally allowing him to rise.

+RATING: 8/10, both of these chapters were great and provided some insight into the minds of Hakuryuu and Judar, especially the hate they carry and unwillingness to forgive Al-tharmen for the role the group played in creating their miserable lives.

It makes you wonder whether Judar spent so much time pursuing Sinbad because he was simply lonely and wished to share his depravity with someone; because now that he has his king vessel, he no longer shows any interest in Sinbad.

I can’t figure out how Aladdin and his group are going to figure into the coming conflict; as a dark king vessel, Hakuryuu’s only interest is still destroying Al-Tharmen and all they stand for. Which means that the big villains of the story are about to fight. Not a very bad thing for the rest of the world.
| |

Episode 4 of Nanatsu No Taizai was all about Ban; the Diana stuff was cool, specifically getting to learn about her relationship with Meliodas, but the antagonists were lame. And then Ban appeared and stole the show at the end, just as the episode came to a close.

THE CHAPTER:
With Hendricksen defeated, the kingdom begins to rebuild.

MY THOUGHTS:

Chapter 100; it’s been quite the journey, or at least it feels like it, when you consider how far the story has come, from Meliodas’ arrival in the first chapter to the subsequent appearance of the rest of the sins and the adventures that followed.

This is quite a milestone in any manga, the one hundredth chapter of the series. And as far as finales go, it wasn’t entirely unimpressive, if only in doing what most series do when they bring their heroes together to look back at their triumphs and losses.

-Hawk
I want to say that I don’t know how to feel about Hawk’s revival; but, truth be told, I don’t think it even matters that much. The impact of Hawk’s death emerged from the fact that Hawk was so unimportant a character that his elevation to sacrificial hero was surprising.

And to that extent, his return from the grave did little more than return him to the same old unimportant role.

That being said, his revival makes no sense whatsoever; the last few panels seem to suggest that Elizabeth is responsible for bringing the tiny pig back to life, the same Elizabeth who declared, mere chapters back, that she didn’t have the power to return what was already dead, merely heal existing life. 

So what happened here? This might be foreshadowing on the manga’s part, possibly regarding Hawk’s role as one of the sins; chances are there is a crucial reason behind his revival, either that or Elizabeth is going to have to pay a price for his revival.

-The Holy knights
It is difficult to believe that the knights would receive redemption so immediately; powerful as Hendricksen was, it is unlikely that he alone drove the Holy war agenda. After a decade of planning, there has to be remnants of his seeds among the holy knights, those that either whole heartedly supported his goals or spent so much time steeped in his madness that they can see no way back.

I doubt this conflict within the kingdom is over, especially taking into account the role the demon clan must have played in Hendricksen’s turn to the dark.

-Elizabeth
I don’t know what to make of Elizabeth; at this point she could play one of many roles in the series. Right now, i am leaning towards Elizabeth becoming some unstoppable evil in the coming chapters.

Which is believable if you take into account her role as the so called Apostle of the Goddess Clan, the same clan whose voices ordered Ban to kill Meliodas; these two primary protagonists are heading towards an interesting collision course.

And Merlin’s back, which makes you wonder if she has left Arthur’s side permanently.

Every few chapters we learn a little bit more about Gowther, just enough to wet our appetites and make us want to know more. This chapter seemed to hint at some kind of close relationship between him and Merlin.

+Thinking on it, no, I don’t think bringing Hawk back was a good idea. It ruined the mood of the chapter, especially following Ban’s speech about how every one he knows eventually leaves him. Then again I have been hearing rumors about Hawk’s ability to reincarnate, something about a side chapter.

I am grateful that the mangaka didn’t resort to nakama power to bring this arc to an end; considering how powerful Hendrickson was, I was momentarily afraid that we might have to go down that route.

RATING: 7/10, basically what you would expect from the end of an arc. Something tells me that this will be the last time we see Elizabeth, at least in any major capacity; those last words spoke of the end of a story.

And that is what happened in this chapter; the story that began in the first chapter, when Elizabeth ventured out to find the sins has come to an end; which means she will soon be parting ways with the group in order to focus on her duties as princess.

Which isn’t a bad thing as it will allow the series to explore new territory.
| |

The week of Halloween has a ton of manga issues. The familiar ones I love are Black Butler, Attack on Titan No Regrets, Fairy Tail, Bloody Brat, and Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days.

  • Black Butler - Looks like a manga series aimed towards women, but it can be enjoyed by men as well. It's a dark, violent series after the first 3 volumes. If you like crime and morality issues, you should check out this manga series.
  • Attack on Titan No Regrets - I haven't read this one, and I did bought the first volume in the summer. If you like Attack on Titan and have Levi as your favorite character, this is a must read.
  • Bloody Brat - Same things I said for Attack on Titan No Regrets but for Blood Lad fans.
  • Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days - Any Kingdom Hearts fan should read the manga series of any of them. They are written differently, but it's enjoyable and faithful to the video games.

I would love to hear your recommendations on the rest of the manga series featured this week. All comments are welcome. Thank you.

Disclaimer: I'm just promoting the official release and the publishers. I'm not selling you anything. This is to combat piracy and get fans to support the official release. All summaries are from ANN.

Sources

Notes

  • Bride of the Water God is listed on Oct. 15 for Right Stuf while ANN and Amazon listed it for this week.
  • Alice in the Country of Jokers Vol. 6 was listed on Oct. 7 for Amazon while Right Stuf had this week.

The following is not listed on ANN:

  • Barakamon Vol 1, Watamote Vol 5, Garden of Words, Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, Vol. 4, and Alice in the Country of Jokers Vol. 6 are on Amazon and Right Stuf for this week.
  • Another novel was on Amazon's Kindle edition since March 19, 2013.

Manga Releases

A Bride's Story Volume 6
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested retail price: $17

Acclaimed creator Kaoru Mori's tale of life on the nineteenth-century Silk Road heads back to Amir and Karluk. In the year since his marriage, Karluk has grown a good deal, but Amir can't help but feel overprotective of her much younger husband. Karluk wants nothing more than to prove that he can be a strong and competent man--and he may soon have the opportunity to prove just that. Desperate for land to feed their flocks, Amir's former tribe prepares to attack her village with a fearsome arsenal of cannons and guns provided by their new allies. This time the Halgals are not interested in capturing Amir--no one is safe from their terrible assault!

Crafted in painstaking detail, Ms. Mori's pen breathes life into the scenery and architecture of the period in this heart-warming, slice-of-life tale that is at once wholly exotic, yet familiar and accessible through the everyday lives of the characters she has created.

Attack on Titan No Regrets Volume 2
  • Distributor: Kodansha Comics
  • Suggested retail price: $10.99

Erwin's political enemies have hired Levi and his crew to take back some incriminating documents. Their reward: the right to live a proud life above ground, in the royal capital. But deep in Titan territory, it's going to be tough to break formation and steal from a squad leader, and Levi still insists on killing the man who humiliated him after the mission is complete. Of course, beyond the walls anything can happen, and a sudden change in Levi's fortunes will force him to face the greatest regret in his life... Prequel to Attack on Titan.

Black Butler Volume 18
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested retail price: $13

Their elaborate schoolroom deception at an end, Earl Ciel Phantomhive and his peerless manservant, Sebastian, finally hit upon the truth behind the incident of the vanished students at Weston College. Just what tragic steps did the elites of the school, spurred on by their overwhelming sense of justice, take to stamp out the bullying running rife in the halls of their institution?!

What began as a seemingly simple case of missing persons goes round and round, spinning out of control into a great menace, one capable of perplexing even a devil...

Bloody Brat Volume 2
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested retail price: $12.99

The cast of Blood Lad returns in the second collection of short stories and four-panel comics from Kanata Yoshino! Tour Demon World's unique array of cuisine, fashion, and magical mayhem with Staz and the crew!

Another (Novel)
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested Retail Price: $24.99

In the spring of 1998, Kouichi Sakakibara transfers to Yomiyama North Middle School. In class, he develops a sense of unease as he notices that the people around him act like they're walking on eggshells, and students and teachers alike seem frightened. As a chain of horrific deaths begin to unfold around him, he comes to discover that he has been placed in the cursed Class 3 in which the student body head count is always one more than expected.

Class 3 is haunted by a vengeful spirit responsible for gruesome deaths in an effort to satisfy its spite. To stop the vicious cycle gripping his new school, Kouichi decides to get to the bottom of the curse, but is he prepared for the horror that lies ahead...?

Watamote Volume 5
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested Retail Price: $12.99

After an unforgiving and grueling introduction to high school, Tomoko's now finally a second-year. One with a tough, sports-crazed homeroom teacher, a somewhat friendly classmate, and a kid brother now stalking the halls of the same school with an even colder attitude toward his big sister...

With all these things shaking up her high school life, will Tomoko be able to stick it out through her second year...?!

Garden of Words
  • Distributor: Vertical
  • Suggested Retail Price: $12.95

Words are powerful. Insults and rumors can derail a career; a bit of encouragement can give someone the strength to pursue their dreams. When a high school boy skipping class to sketch shoe designs and a taciturn woman drinking a morning beer meet in a Tokyo park, they say little, but the woman bids farewell with an ancient tanka poem. Will the boy figure out the poem's meaning - and its corresponding response - before it's too late?

Barakamon Vol. 1
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested Retail Price: $14.99

For a certain reason, a handsome young calligrapher by the name of Seishuu Handa uproots himself and moves to an island on the westernmost edge of Japan. "Sensei," as he comes to be known, is a city boy through and through, and has never experienced rural life until now. And by the looks of it, he has much to learn! From navigating public roads by tractor to resigning himself to having his new digs commandeered by the local children as their new hangout, the list of Sensei's hardships is shaping up to be long indeed!

Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days Volume 4
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested Retail Price: $11.99

Left alone to ponder the purpose of her existence and desperate for answers, Xion journeys alone to find out who - or what - she really is. But little do she, Roxas, and Axel know that her quest will lead to the close of one tale and the continuation of another...

Fairy Tail Volume 43
  • Distributor: Kodansha Comics
  • Suggested retail price: $10.99

The demons of Tartaros are murdering Council members to try to get to a secret weapon with the power to wipe out all who would oppose them in one fell swoop. But what is this weapon? How could killing ex-Council members help them get it? And how do they even know about it in the first place? Natsu and his friends need to solve these mysteries if they hope to stand up to the demons!

Inu x Boku SS Volume 5
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested retail price: $11.99

In search of independence and solitude, the sharp-tongued Ririchiyo Shirakiin moves to the Maison de Ayakashi, an apartment building with its own Secret Service. Ririchiyo is eager to be alone, but upon her arrival, she is greeted by Soushi, an SS agent who seems...familiar somehow. Familiar and yet...not quite the same. Troubled by recurring dreams of a different Soushi-a man who loved her...and suffered for her-Ririchiyo chooses to accept her new circumstances and embrace the...

Judge Volume 5
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested retail price: $12.99

Who could possibly be responsible for this game? That question swirls among the participants, who grow weary as they are forced to make one horrific choice after another. The game is to conclude when the requisite four survivors have been determined. For these four fortunates, court will be adjourned... But what awaits them on the other side of the courthouse doors?

Oninagi Volume 4
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested retail price: $16.99

Her average life seemingly forever abandoned, Nanami is thrust into the thick of the intensifying hostilities between the Ministry of Sacred Treasures and the demon organization Arcana, who desire Nanami's inherited demonic powers for themselves!

As the situation escalates into all-out war, who will remain standing once the dust has settled?! And will Nanami be able to master the immense power that dwells within her in time to join the fight?!

14. Volume 3

Distributor: Yen Press Suggested retail price: $12.99 When she fails to save Sayaka, Mami is overcome by despair and loneliness. With the fate of every Magical Girl made clear before her, Mami chooses to embrace death rather than fight on. As Mami sets out to deliver herself into the hands of the witch, Kyouko rushes to confront her former mentor. Mami's soul gem steadily darkens-soon her doom will be certain. Can Kyouko give Mami a reason to fight on before her gem turns jet-black?

Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The Different Story Volume 8
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested retail price: $13

Is it too much to ask for a little peace and quiet around here? I mean, it's cool that my old pal Sasaki showed up out of the blue, but now Mori-san's blackmailing Tachibana, Fujiwara's being a general pain in the butt, and Kuyou's clinging to Kimidori-san-who's a cat for some reason. Amid the chaos, the SOS Brigade's final line of defense and the individual most responsible for my own sense of well being, Nagato, is downright...cheerful? More characters, more gags, and more narration from Kyon in this volume!

The Celebration of Haruhi Suzumiya Anthology
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested Retail Price: $25.99

There's even more to be told of the antics of the SOS Brigade - under Haruhi's leadership the possibilities for fun and mayhem are endless! Join your favorite characters in this huge collection of brand-new adventures and illustrations from a wide range of artists and storytellers, jam-packed with more time travelers, aliens, espers, and Haruhi than Kyon can handle!

Ubel Blatt Volume 0
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested retail price: $20

When the black blade roars, all who stand in its path shall be torn asunder...!

What is it that Koinzell, the mysterious young boy who wields the sword with such exceptional skill, desires?

The fight against the "Lances of Betrayal," who were thought to have been defeated by the Seven Heroes, begins-

And at battle's end, only the shocking truth will remain amid the pools of blood...

Umineko When They Cry Episode 4: Alliance of the Golden Witch Part 2
  • Distributor: Yen Press
  • Suggested retail price: $22

The appearance of Gretel has strengthened Battler's resolve to face off against Beatrice once again. Both players have become more skillful tacticians over the course of time, and Battler's new "blue truth" ability, along with Gretel's support, will be a boon to his strategy. As the curtain rises on the fourth game, the Ushiromiya family has gathered on Rokkenjima for their annual meeting. Gretel observes the family she hardly knew with complicated emotions...She must come to terms with the past if she wants to help Battler overcome the Golden Witch!

| |

Welcome to the last week of October's DVD and Blu-Ray releases! We got a small selection. With Toonami airing Hellsing Ultimate back in September 13, 2014, they will air Hellsing VI on Oct. 26, Hellsing VII on Nov. 1, and the finale on Nov. 8. I'm fairly new to the Hellsing series. For those who are fans of it, please let me know what you think of the franchise. Other than Hellsing, we have Monogatari 2/Otorimonogatari, Pokemon, and One Piece.

I would love to hear your recommendations on these series. All comments are welcome. Thank you.

Disclaimer: I'm just promoting the official release and the publishers. I'm not selling you anything. This is to combat piracy and get fans to support the official release. All summaries are from ANN.

Sources

Notes

  • Otorimonogatari - Nadeko Medusa Limited Edition is listed on ANN and Right Stuf for this week.

DVD and Blu-Ray Releases

Hellsing Ultimate - Set 3 (Blu-Ray 9-10)
  • Distributor: FUNimation Entertainment
  • Suggested retail price: $44.98

The rogue vampire Alucard is the Hellsing Organization's deadliest instrument in its mission to protect the British Empire from satanic ghouls and Nazi freaks. He is not alone in his assault on the occult; the master has a servant. Policewoman Seras Victoria accepted Alucard's gift of dark salvation after falling in the line of duty, and now the remnants of her human soul struggle against her growing vampire urges. Together, they haunt the shadows as a sinister force of good - and tonight the foggy streets of England shall flow with the blood of their evil prey.

Contains OVA episodes 9-10.

Special Features: Episode Interview Sessions (IX, X), Episode Commentary (IX, X), R.I.P. In Memoriam, U.S. Trailer, Trailer.

Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

One Piece - Collection 10 (DVD)
  • Distributor: FUNimation Entertainment
  • Suggested retail price: $34.98

Hoping to save their beloved boat, the Straw Hats drop anchor at the shipbuilding city of Water 7, but the prognosis for the Going Merry proves far worse than expected. The hits keep coming as Robin mysteriously vanishes, the Franky Family robs the crew blind, and Usopp goes rogue after a shocking battle with Luffy! As if things weren't bleak enough, the gang finds themselves accused of a cold-hearted assassination attempt - and hunted by the entire city. Luffy and his remaining mates hatch a plan to prove their innocence, but a sinister gang of cutthroat killers stays one step ahead of their every move. Dark secrets and tragic pasts are revealed as Luffy and Zoro fall to a formidable foe, Chopper faces a life and death situation, and a monstrous storm threatens to sink the city once and for all!

Contains episodes 230-252. Special Features: Episode Commentary (233, 236, 244, 245), Textless Openings & Closings, U.S. Trailer, Trailers. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

Otorimonogatari - Nadeko Medusa [Limited Edition] (Sub.Blu-Ray 3)
  • Distributor: Aniplex of America
  • Suggested retail price: $64.98

Nadeko encounters a giant snake who claims to be a deity named Kuchinawa. Kuchinawa promises Nadeko that he would grant her wish if she aids him in the search of his object of worship. Little does Nadeko know that obtaining the object of worship will cost her more than what she expected. Koyomi tries to convince Nadeko to let go of the object of worship, but it's too late, and Nadeko swallows the object and becomes a snake apparition! To make things worse, now Nadeko wants to kill Koyomi and Shinobu Oshino! Third arc to the Monogatari series' second season.

Contains episodes 1-4 plus a deluxe booklet and pinup postcard set! Special Features: "Omnibus 3" Video, Textless Opening & Ending, Promotional Video & Commercial Collections. Spoken Languages: Japanese, English subtitles.

Pokémon - Indigo League - The Complete Collection (Dub. DVD)
  • Distributor: Viz Media
  • Suggested retail price: $54.98

Ash Ketchum is a brand-new Pokemon Trainer, and on his first day he gets his very first Pokemon, Pikachu! But their friendship gets off to a rocky start. It's up to Ash to earn Pikachu's trust as he and friends Misty and Brock follow their quest to collect Pokemon, make friends and battle their way to the Indigo League!

Contains episodes 1-78. Spoken Languages: English.

Pokémon - Indigo League Part 2 (Dub. DVD)
  • Distributor: Viz Media
  • Suggested retail price: $24.98
Join friends Ash, Brock and Misty on their continuing quest to collect Pokemon, make friends, and battle their way to the Indigo League!

Contains episodes 27-52 of Season 1.

Spoken Languages: English.
Pokémon - Indigo League Part 3 (Dub. DVD)
  • Distributor: Viz Media
  • Suggested retail price: $24.98
Enjoy the Pokemon story from the beginning! Meet our hero, Ash, in his hometown of Pallet Town where boys and girls are encouraged to begin their Pokemon journeys! Join the Indigo League in these 26 episodes from Season 1 of Pokemon!

Contains episodes 53-78 of Season 1.

Spoken Languages: English.

The following titles are not listed on ANN:

  • Right Stuf has Cardcaptor Sakura Movie this week while Amazon has it on Nov. 4.
  • A Certain Magical Index II was released on Amazon back in Oct. 14 while Right Stuf had it this week.
  • Amazon and ANN had Ghost in the Shell Arise BD Vol. 1 back on Oct. 21 while Right Stuf had it this week.
  • Fairy Tail BD Vol. 12 was released on Sept. 16 via Amazon while Right Stuf had it this week.
  • Sherlock Hound is released this week for Right Stuf while on Nov. 4 for Amazon.
Cardcaptor Sakura: The Movie Blu-Ray Remastered
  • Distributor: EASTERN STAR
  • Suggested Retail Price: $29.95

Across stormy waters, a forgotten love still burns. It's a lucky day when Sakura wins a trip to Hong Kong, but why are her dreams haunted by dark waters and a strange woman? There's no time to enjoy her vacation, however. Sakura is hypnotized and led to discover both a watery phantom world, and the evil woman who inhabits it. But is this spirit as malicious as she seems, or does she burn with a desire for revenge?

A Certain Magical Index II Season 2 DVD/Blu-Ray Part 1
  • Distributor: FUNimation
  • Suggested Retail Price: $64.98

The Book of the Law - an encoded grimoire containing catastrophic magic - has been stolen, so naturally Kamijo, Index, and a few familiar faces join in the crusade to protect the one nun who can decipher the powerful text. But as the group battles church sects and holy assassins, they realize that discovering who their true enemy is may be more difficult than saving the sister. Meanwhile, an organization known as the Science Society resurrects an esper-producing program, a school festival brings out the competition - and drama - in the student population, and a mysterious figure negotiates the purchase of a sacred relic that could threaten the future of Academy City.

Contains episodes 1-12. Special Features: Audio Commentary, Textless Opening & Closing, Trailers. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

Dragon Ball Z Season 8 Uncut Blu-Ray Set
  • Distributor: FUNIMATION
  • Suggested Retail Price: $44.98

The forces of good and evil have converged upon the planet Earth, and the fate of the universe hangs in the balance! The evil wizard Babidi has traveled across the galaxy on a quest for revenge, hoping to fulfill his father's thwarted dreams of universal domination. Meanwhile, the Supreme Kai has come to enlist the aid of the Z-Fighters in an effort to prevent Babidi from completing his plans and awakening a monster of unimaginable terror - Majin Buu!

As Goku and the Z-Fighters descend into Babidi's lair, they are confronted by an army of powerful minions, led by the Demon King Dabura himself! Can our heroes resist the wizard's dark magic and battle their way through this host of villains before time runs out? With each passing second, more energy is gathered for the sleeping Majin Buu. And should this creature of pure evil be awakened, all life - everywhere - will be extinguished! Contains episodes 220 - 253. Special Features: Inside Dragon Ball Z: Interview with Kyle Hebert, Inside Dragon Ball Z: Interview with Kara Edwards, Dragon Ball Z: Coming to America, Textless Opening and Closing, U.S. Trailer, Trailers. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

Fairy Tail DVD/Blu-Ray Part 12
  • Distributor: FUNimation
  • Suggested Retail Price: $54.99

Using a book from the Heartfilia library as a guide, the members of Fairy Tail split up to track down pieces of the Infinity Clock - a legendary enchanted item that could have the power to bring ruin to the entire world. Standing in their way is a secret order of wizards known as the Legion Platoon, who don't trust the magic time bomb in the hands of the notoriously destructive guild. As the clock ticks closer to doomsday, an old enemy - Oracion Seis - is reborn in a terrifyingly powerful new form. This dark guild has its own plans for the magical timepiece, and if Fairy Tail and the Legion Platoon can't stop them from using the catastrophic clock, time could be up for the Fiore Kingdom.

Contains episodes 132-142. Special Features: Episode Commentary (137, 140, 142), Textless Opening & Closing Songs, U.S. Trailer, Trailers. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

Fairy Tail DVD/Blu-Ray Part 13

Distributor: FUNimation Suggested Retail Price: $54.99

Oracion Seis has kidnapped Lucy and is using her to power a clock capable of spreading catastrophic magic cross the world. If Fairy Tail doesn't stop the dark guild, the entire Fiore Kingdom will fall into a waking nightmare and their teammate will merge with the enchanted timepiece forever. But Oracion Seis isn't the only group of wizards standing in their way: the Legion Platoon has decided that to save the world, they'll destroy the magic clock - and Lucy.

While Fairy Tail fights with all their power to rescue their teammate, the truth about Michelle comes to light and a devastating deception is exposed. When the clock begins to chime reality descends into chaos, and in the end Natsu and his fellow wizards might be too late.

Contains episodes 143-153. Special Features: Episode Commentary (150, 151), Textless Opening & Closing Songs, U.S. Trailer, Trailers. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

Hakkenden: Eight Dogs of the East Season 2 Collection Blu-Ray or DVD
  • Distributor: Sentai Filmworks
  • Suggested Retail Price: $69.98 (BD), $59.98 (DVD)

Forced to choose between death and an unnatural life bound to the living sword Murasame, Shino Inuzuka chose the sword. Now, however, in the bloody aftermath of his transformation and Kohaku's death, Shino's awareness of the true scope of his bond with Murasame has expanded. Is he truly a curse to all who meet him?

In the end, the focus must return to the mysterious beads which started everything. What exactly are their origin and powers? Who and where are the holders who have not yet been located? And what are Rio Saotome and the Imperial Church's real roles in all of this? Does the woman who is "She," hold the answers?

Contains episodes 1-13 of season 2. Special Features: Clean Opening Animation, Clean Closing Animation. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

Sherlock Hound DVD Complete & Unabridged Series
  • Distributor: Eastern Star
  • Suggested Retail Price: $59.95

Based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes series, here all the characters are depicted as anthropomorphic animals. The majority are dogs, though Holmes is a fox and his enemy Professor Moriarty is a wolf. Jules Verne-steampunk style technology regularly appears, adding a 19th-century science-fiction atmosphere to the series.

Contains episodes 1-26. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

| |

Some of the fun that I'd get out of reading DETECTIVE CONAN was piecing together and working out the mystery as the chapters were released. My proficiency in a forum dedicated to workout out murder mysteries was high enough that people started calling me "Kristantei". I easily had a 95% success rate with my theories.

I've been absent from the series for a few years, without any options for the newest chapters. This is my first experience with Masumi Sera. I notice she's not in the wiki -- yet. With Crunchyroll simulcasting the series' latest episodes, I thought I would give this new murder mystery a try.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on my deductions from this first part.

Tragedy of the Red Woman [Steam] (赤い女の惨劇 [湯煙], Akai Onna no Sengeki [Yukemuri])

All the of current events are surrounded by a murder from 15 years ago. The "Red Woman" story. She was never captured and still at large. Three years following, a high school Sotoko went missing for one week, and was found at the bottom of a wet quicksand pit. She was only found because her shoes were found nearby. Although, was she drowned or stabbed? They never mention her cause of death.

The Red Woman is being blamed, because of the knife that was located near where the body was found. How do they know this was the same knife from the event three years prior? when the Red Woman first killed, they were crimes of sudden rage and impulse. Even the death of the officer could be attributed to an act of panic. What would be her motive to attack a random person in the woods? I think she's being set up as perpetrator of a planned murder. Someone needs to be looking for another killer, so the police don't look too hard at those present with better motive. A crazy woman missing in the woods for years is a good option.

Victim

Masaie Hakuya (薄谷 昌家, Hakuya Masaie)

  • Age: 28
  • Status: Deceased
  • Cause of Death: Possible Drowning
  • Points of Interest: Bath Salts

Notes-

The points of interest about Masaie are that he has a rather adept interest in bath salts and he seemed to be the most shaken by the discussion of "The Red Woman". He was also found in the swamp by Jinsuke earlier in the day.

He's sort of a larger fellow, so overpowering him to kill him seems difficult. We'll need to wait for a cause of death before going too far. Just because he was found in the hot water doesn't mean that's how he died.

What are the possible motives for his death? Does he know something about the earlier death of Sotoko and was silenced from ever talking, or was he some how responsible for Sotoko's death -- either on purpose or accidental --, and his murder is revenge based.

Suspects

It seems that every character has a potentially shaky alibi. At the moment, they all could have killed Masaie.

Tamami Minegishi (峰岸 珠美, Minegishi Tamami)

  • Age: 28
  • Status: Suspect
  • Points of Interest: Called for detectives and a talented cook

Notes-

Tamami seems to be the most interested in having the recent string of strange events looked into. She even asked for photographs to be brought. The content of those are still unknown. However, she doesn't have a solid alibi. She is only heard calling out from the kitchen asking what Ran and Sonoko wanted to eat for dinner. They gave no answer, and Tamami declined any assistance. Did she not want anyone in the kitchen to know she wasn't really there the whole time.

At the moment, she seems unlikely to be the killer. Why invite a well known detective if you're planning an elaborate murder? Although, she wouldn't be the first killer to think she could manipulate a detective.

I'd want to look in the kitchen to see the status of the meals being prepared. Even if there is food there, is it hot or cold? She could have prepared dinner ahead of time to create her alibi.

Sumika Kawana (河名 澄香, Kawana Sumika)

  • Age: 28
  • Status: Suspect
  • Points of Interest: Brought photos, and controlled Ran and Sokono's movements in the rental home.

Notes-

Sumika is an interesting suspect. She engaged Ran and Sonoko to help her clean up. However, that could be used to control where they were in the house while she was elsewhere in the house killing Masaie. She gave them specific tasks to be in one room to know where they were.

A point of interest is the commotion Ran and Sonoko heard upstairs with the vacuum running. Was the loud vacuum sound being used to mask the screams of Masaie being killed, to create an alibi for her location, or a bit of both?

Jinsuke Ninda (任田 甚輔, Ninda Jinsuke)

  • Age: 29
  • Status: Suspect
  • Points of Interest: Carries a thin bat with him everywhere to ward off "them(??)".

Notes-

The thing that's odd about him is how he made the point of saying that the store he was walking to is 1 kilometer away to get the drinks. Who brings up the distance they're going to walk? To that point, why wouldn't he get the drinks they need on the way there to begin with? The house was already so well stocked with food that a rather elaborate dinner could be made to feed everyone present. Why didn't it have enough drinks?

If he's the killer, he could have been building his alibi by giving the impression that he was a distance away when Masaie was murdered. When in reality, he had the drinks ahead of time in the woods, killed Masaie, and returned around dinner time, when everyone in the house was preparing for dinner and someone would be taking a bath to find the body before his return.

I'd be interested in seeing if he has a receipt from the store, which would have a time of purchase; and to count either the number or content of the drinks. Conan is a wild card. If Jinsuke's the killer and this was planned, he wouldn't be likely to know the age of the people visiting. He already thought that Masumi Sera was a male. If he doesn't have drinks appropriate for people underage, that's very telling.

Deductions

Being the first part of the case, I don't want to get too far ahead of the evidence. What is beyond question is that the murder of Masaie was long in planning. This was in no way a crime of opportunity. It was well known among the whole group that Masaie had an interest in bath salts. It's likely that tending to the bath is always his duty when they visit the cabin yearly. The killer would be able to plan his murder and how to hide the body.

I suspect that the reoccurring incidents with red objects was building suspicion on the Red Woman for a crime that would happen at a later date. Plant the seed in everyone's mind.

What I have to ask, why was Masaie lurking in the swamp? They come there yearly since high school. He would know where it's unsafe, so I don't buy that he was lost. I suspect he was looking for something. Something related to the death of Sotoko.

I'm a bit unclear about where the bath is located in the house right now. That's a pretty important factor to this event.

Given the current situation, Sumika is the best suspect for the killer. The way she drew Ran and Sonoko into the bath, and the body was found some time later there. It was as if she was showing them it was empty, but was it really? The bath was mostly covered and was tinted green from bath salts. Sumika removed one side of the heated bath cover, was Masaie's body underneath the other half? (This trick was used once before in this series)

With Sumika walking around the house and bringing others along with her, it shortens any window for another killer to set up the bizarre situation in which the body was found.

The word "Steam" in the title could be a clue. Heat can be used to manipulate estimate TOD (Time of Death) and make it appear a person died at a different time. It could make him appear as if he died sooner than he actually did.

Lastly, who is the wild woman we see as they talk about the Red Woman? It's possible that she is actually the actual Red Woman, who's been in hiding. Being alone in the woods for 15 years is suspicious enough. It would explain her ragged appearance. Her current interest in the house could be that she's seen something in the woods recently, but too afraid to come forward due to fear of facing her crimes.

| |

I have never had the most positive opinion of Dragon Ball Z. My experience with the series was initially restricted to the first 16 episodes of Vegeta’s invasion of earth, at which point I somewhat lost interest.

Backtracking for no particular reason (that I can remember), I encountered Dragon Ball, Toriyama’s original series, and loved its quirkiness enough to give its sequel another go; I went as far as the Freeza saga before finally calling its quits.

Before today, my thoughts on Dragon ball as a franchise (precluding the original Dragon Ball) pretty much aligned with those of the numerous DBZ haters the internet has been known to produce, most of whom cannot stand its exaggerated tropes.

Again, that was before today, before I actually saw Dragon Ball Kai, a series that just might have transformed my entire outlook on Akira Toriyama’s story, so much so that it somehow compelled me to take a closer look at Fairy Tail.

DRAGON BALL KAI
My first encounter with Dragon Ball Kai began with Gohan and his journey to school upon the back of his nimbus cloud. I knew something was terribly wrong almost immediately.

It wasn’t just the quirkiness of watching Gohan bring justice to the streets in his silly Saiyaman costume but the miraculous and rather casual return of the twice (thrice?) dead Goku and even the manner in which the confrontation with Babiddi and his minions played out.

Basically every thought I had ever had about just how campy, cheesy and cliché’ Dragonball Z could become seemed to manifest in the 17 or so episodes of Dragonball Kai I watched.

And it was awesome; a reaction that my brain couldn’t quite explain and which, even now, I can’t help but presume might have been a fluke on the part of this specific set of episodes.

+THE PLOT:
Fighters from all around the world are summoned to partake in a test of skill and strength in the World Martial Arts Tournament; when an ancient and malevolent evil threatens the world, the strongest among them all will rise to defend their home against the dark machinations of a power hungry sorcerer.

+REVIEW:
I don’t know if that plot description does this series justice, at least as far as the episodes I watched are concerned; because, to an extent, Kai had so much more going for it than that particular synopsis describes, even while doing so little in the same breath.

-The characters
DB Kai’s characters single handedly sold the show to me; I know the series is just DBZ re-mastered but I do not remember enjoying the DBZ cast this much in my original encounter with the universe.

Kai’s cast is energetic and full of life, bringing less depth of story and more fun and excitement. I was especially taken by Trunks and Goten, whose rivalry was an interesting and light hearted take upon the conflict between their fathers.

Mr. Satan was infinitely humorous, not only in his show of cowardice but the various interactions he had with his daughter Videl and her new comrades; and Gohan, I was caught a little off guard by his age, seeing as the last time I saw him, he was off training with Picollo in preparation for Vegeta’s arrival, and doing more crying than actual fighting.

Considering his curret power and age, one does question the decision to bring Goku back to the fold; with the younger cast finally burgeoning and having come into their own, it would have made more sense to bury the past and all its heroes, making way for the new generation (like most shonen tries to do).

And any nostalgia among fans that cannot see a dragonball  universe without Goku could have been easily satiated with Goten, a Goku facsimile if there ever was one and the perfect opportunity to inject the innocence of DragonBall back into the aging series.

None the less I can’t complain, because even Goku’s presence aided rather than harmed this arc.

-The Story
‘What Story?"’ is what I would have said about Dragon Ball in the past, and speaking truthfully that hasn’t changed. That is what my brain is struggling to reconcile about Dragon Ball Kai.

The majority of the elements that this show uses I have spent considerable time complaining about and raging against in various other anime; these tropes, the cheesy execution of plots, the somewhat messy pacing, I should have been screaming (at least internally) at Dragon Ball Kai as I watched it.

And my brain struggled to remind me of how much I hated this sort of story execution in other anime, how many manga had irritated me by telling the exact sort of story that was playing out in Dragon Ball Kai.

And maybe there is a genius element to all this, a secret technique to presenting this material in a way that, rather than infuriate, immensely entertained me. I can’t even compare Kai to the original DBZ because I didn’t watch this arc in the original format.

Which means I cannot quite determine if Dragon Ball Kai actually does something different from original, or if this arc was just as entertaining in the original Dragon Ball Z.

Whatever case, the arc promised a fun filled story told within the setting of explosive battles at a tournament, followed by the arrival of an ancient evil, and it managed to entertain in every way.

The actual battles were engaging and the conversations revealed enough snippets of information to provide an idea of previous story lines and arcs that might prove relevant at the present.

-The action
You cannot talk about Dragon Ball without mentioning the action; and for a series as old as this, it is surprising just how dynamic and not stale the action is.

One of the reasons that tend to attract me to Naruto is the series’ unique collection of action scenes, usually so much more than a punch/kick/punch/kick approach. Probably because their fairly unreliable levels of durability (at least in comparison to One Piece and Bleach), fight scenes in Naruto are typically dynamic primarily because of the caution each character injects into his or her actions on the battlefield.

And in a series where a kunai to the throat can bring even the strongest enemies to their knees, it makes sense that the fights would progress fairly slowly, with each step planned, well thought out and executed with thorough forethought. 

Dragon Ball Kai reminded me of Naruto, not on its pacing but the variations that it infused within each fight scene; for a series this old, I expected several minutes worth of characters blurring about each other, and throwing endless flurries of invisible fists and kicks at each other.

As such it was surprising how almost grounded the fighting was, at least within the tournament setting, the moves varying with the passing of time, making even the long winded battles worth watching.

Again, I cannot tell if this is the effect of Dragon Ball Kai or if the original series actually got his good. Whatever the case, I could watch these aliens beat the daylights out of each other all day.

And did I mention how awesome Trunks and Goten were.

+VERDICT:
Dragon Ball Kai is fun, and it is the fact that it doesn’t take itself seriously that makes this arc work so well. Yes, it is silly to an extent, yet the show chooses to not only accept but utilize that silliness to great effect.

Dragon Ball Kai, or at least his arc, is the sort of show you can watch on a lazy Saturday, where nothing particular piques you interest and you simply wish to immerse yourself in a little bit of light fun.

+RATING: 8/10, I am still in awe. The idea that I could enjoy Dragon Ball Kai this much still baffles me. Again, I am not quite certain if it is this arc in particular that is simply that entertaining, or if the rest of the series maintains this same quality of fun.

Barely halfway through this saga, I cannot rule out the possibility of finding disappointment once I finally push through the rest of the arc, Here’s to hopping that the series maintains this same quality.

And who knows. I just might decide to backtrack and catch up on the entire series, starting from the Frieza finale onwards.

THE FAIRY TAIL COMPARISON
IN the few short years that I have been reading and watching Fairy Tail, it never crossed my mind to juxtapose Fairy Tail against Dragon Ball regarding any of its incarnations; not only because my experience with Dragon Ball was limited, but the two series, well, they don’t really have anything in common outside of basic shonen tropes.

Dragon Ball Kai didn’t change that perspective; what it did was allow me to understand the potential that lay within Fairy Tail’s structure, or rather all it could be.

Don’t get me wrong; while I am not as big a Fairy Tail Fan as I once was, I have reached a place where I can appreciate it, where the story telling decisions made do not infuriate me quite as much.

That being said, I cannot ignore the manga’s many flaws. Simply put, Fairy Tail doesn’t know what it should be, or even wants to be; straying back and forth between light hearted tones and very dark concepts, I have been accused before of failing to appreciate the story for what it is: simplistic, comedic, action packed and Ecci.

And the claim is this: if I could only understand the fact that Fairy Tail wasn’t the dark and heavy series I want it to be, I would enjoy it. 

To an extent that is true, but the fault for any confusion on my part with regards to the sort of manga I am reading falls solely on the shoulders of Hiro Mashima; I take Fairy Tail more seriously than it deserves because that is the tone the story has always presented mostly dark and only breaking out the fun and happy stuff at the end of its arcs.

As I was watching Dragonball Kai I couldn’t help but think of Fairy Tail. Because Kai knows what it is, or should be, and makes optimum use of its assets. People like to make excuses for really bad entertainment; think of all those movies that want us to believe they are terrible on purpose, just so they can qualify for the ‘So bad they are good’ Category.

Dragon Ball Kai isn’t bad per say; but it is campy and very cheesy, the sort of cheesiness that so many tried to convince me was intentional and which I disputed as desperate excuses until today.

Clearly Toriyama knew what he was doing, because Kai spends more time making fun of itself than I thought possible. There is a perfect balance between the dark and light elements. And at no point does the story get so serious that you forget what Dragon Ball is meant to be.

This is what Fairy Tail should be; if its so determined to follow its lighthearted side, then why not stick to it, play the strengths that a story within such a genre affords, the way Kai does its thing.

Kai doesn’t as much narrate its story as it does simply play with the plots, throwing characters about, the result being a surprisingly fun filled experience. At the end of the day Kai makes it so it doesn’t matter how its arcs unfold, how the various battles finish or who wins at the end. 

It is all about the journey. And in that regard it can get away with all the ludicrous power-ups it wishes to invent. Because, at the end of the day, the focus on creating a fun filled experience is never lost.

Fairy Tail is a somewhat dark and action packed shonen series that wants to do lighthearted comedy and ecci; and in that regard it fails, because it creates expectations for plot progressions down the sort of murky paths that never payoff the way they should.

It would benefit from not taking itself too seriously. While it isn’t quite terrible, despite having some terrible moments (Because she’s Erza? Really Hiro?) Fairy Tail could truly come into its own, become a true contender for the top spot if only it was less of an overly emotional series, dark and action packed, yet sort of comedic and silly, and instead truly embraced its light and fun side.
| |

Okay people! Let’s start this Toku Corner with a bang, as the sign of baddassery is upon us… KENJI MATSUDA IS COMING…

Yes, I know I have been speaking an awful lot of Matsuda, even that he never was a main Kamen Rider, but let me explain a bit about him. He is indie action movie star in Japan, having parts in a shitload of B ninja movies; yes they have those in Japan as well. His big break was in the movie Versus (2000) in which he plays a character only known as “The Yakuza with the Knife” and gives a performance that is Heath Ledger’s Joker 8 years before it. He acted in two Kamen Rider Series and in Makai Kishi Garo (A series I will talk more about later)

Why do I focus so much in this particular actor? (Apart from my mancrush for him) is to show that in Kamen Rider, in the end, is not about the suits, the gimmicks or the powers, and is about the people involved. If your actors really want to play the character it will make it even better and Matsuda is an example when it comes to that. It’s one of the main advantages Kamen Rider has over Super Sentai, the characters are more developed and leave more breathing space for the actors to do their thing. Super Sentai characters are always typecasted into roles, Kamen Rider can have a creepy sinister rapey looking guy that is comic relief and it works…

Well, now that KENJI MATSUDA is explained (but not forgotten), I can talk about the different types of Rider. Is quite simple, as there are three main categories

Tech Rider: Any rider with powers coming from technological means, most of the Showa era Riders full under this category as most of them were either Cyborgs or wore armor, or both. Is not as common in the Heisei era, but is still pretty common. Their powers vary, as some have different themes assigned to them, but hard tech is usually a thing, like Space Travel or Military Hardware.

Bio Rider: Riders that have organic powers, possibly the least common type, there are two main Showa Riders under this category (Amazon and Shin) while there aren’t any main riders in the Heisei era with this particularity. The Armors tend to be like an exoskeleton or some sort of membrane and tend to be the goriest riders.

Mystical Rider: This are also a minority, as there isnt anyone like this in the Showa Era (maybe Amazon, but he is mainly bio) yet in the Heisei there are quite a few. (Kuuga, Agito, Kiva, Wizard and maybe Hibiki) They tend to have elemental powers most of the time.

Ok, after this brief explanation let’s jump to the end of the Heisei Stage 1 with Riders 7 to 9, Kabuto, Den-O and Kiva.

Kamen Rider Kabuto (2006-2007)

A meteor struck Tokyo 7 years ago killing many people and causing mayor damages, yet the worst part was just starting. The meteor brought with it the Worm a race of Metamorphic beings that can disguise themselves as humans and try to consume the original model and replace them. Fighting them there is the ZECT Organization, that hunt this creatures trying to stop them from maturing and shedding their larva state forms as when they do they evolve into their adult form and can access to an ability called Clock Up, which allows them to move at near light speeds.

Enter Arata Kagami, agent of Zect our….secondary character for this series, he will be the point of view we will have to see the show of Souji Tendo, our protagonist. Under any notion of common sense and narrative integrity Souji Tendo, our titular rider should be poison for the story as he is, lacking any other term to describe him, the Ubermensch, capable of any feat or skill he needs to, all while giving perfect advice under the “My grandmother used to say…” phrase. Souji takes the mantle of Kabuto, something, that according to him, was his destiny and he was preparing for to battle the Worms.

From this point onward shit starts to get real with Riders fighting Riders, intrigue coming from ZECT and their relation to the Worms. Kabuto is an outstanding series, with great characters, great Rider designs and incredible fight scenes as the Riders and Worms fight using Clock up and everything slows down around them. It has flaws, the story has some holes, Tendou gets a bit to mary sueish from time to time and the ending could use work, but is a pretty damn good series.

Kamen Rider Den-O (2007-2008)

The most popular Heisei series by far Den-O is interesting yet flawed. Our protagonist is Ryotaro Nogami a weak, cowardly and shy teen that works part time on his older sister café. While being bullied as usual a strange being made of sand tries to help him by possessing his body and controlling it. This starts a chain reaction that involves the shy and meek Ryotaro in a time Travelling adventure as he fights the Imagin, the same race of the being who possessed him, trying to stop them from making contracts with humans in exchange of controlling them in a certain day.

Ryotaro evolves through the series as he befriends more Imagins like the one at the beginning, each one fighting to get his body for a stroll from time to time as they help him to fight. Den-O has the most movies, thanks to the popularity of the Imagins, clearly aimed at children. The Time Travelling plot they handled also allowed them to do crossovers with older riders and stuff like that.

Nice humor, a large and good cast, decent designs and a bit of wackiness was the mix that exploded in Japan like a powder keg and managed to make more than 3 movies. And even until today the Imagin still are part of the Crossover movies with more airtime dedicated to them than to Main Riders, not exactly fair, but they sold more toys. They even sold Fish sausages…. Good series, but can get trippy with the Time Travel.

Kamen Rider Kiva (2008-2009)

One of the three narrative heavy weights in the franchise, Kamen Rider Kiva is the gothic monsters series, with a Vampiric themed main Rider, werewolves, merfolk and more crazy horror stuff in the mix. Our protagonist Wataru Kurenai is a shy and eccentric violin maker with a bit of an hygiene obsession, he holds the Kivat Belt that allows him to turn into Kiva, a Rider with a design so cool it should have its own guitar riff every time it appears. He fights against the Fangire a race of Vampire like creatures that killed all the other underworld races like the Wolfens and now plan to consume humanity.

But this is just one side of this tale, as the series also shows what happened in the 80’s when Wataru’s father, Otoya Kurenai, a womanizing world class violinist stumbles upon the existence of the Fangire and joins up with an organization that fights them using the IXA System, an advanced battle armor, while he tries to get it on with one of the female agents.

Yes he looks this awesome...
Yes he looks this awesome...

Both stories have synergy between each other, explaining stuff in the 80’s that comes to play later in the 00’s as the fates of past and present are tied by the Kurenai bloodline and the family heirloom, the Bloody Rose Violin, that can detect Fangire’s attacking humans.

Kiva is one of the best Heisei Riders and possibly has the best story of them all. Except for an epilogue that is one of the most bizarre scenes in the show history, Kiva is a narrative powerhouse. Alongside having some of the best monster and suit designs, being impregnated in fine culture with references, with music, arts and sculpture. Not to mention a kick-ass soundtrack with many violin tracks.

AND KENJI MATSUDA IS ON IT PLAYING A GODDAMN, VAMPIRE KILLING, ASS-KICKING, NAME TAKING, LATIN LOVER?, WEREWOLF…. All hail Matsuda!!!

Sorry, couldn’t control my mancrush, next time we will talk about the 10 Heisei Series and Anniversary, Decade, and a bit about the movies of the first 9 Heisei Shows.

| |

Welcome to the first review of BONJOUR♪Sweet Love Patisserie! Just trying to promote obscure series and the Bonjour Koiaji Patisserie Discussion thread.

A bit of background on why I started this review. You can skip this if you like:

Every season of anime, I make it a goal to watch a lot of shows to support the discussion trailers my friends and I make for the community. We are in charge of making trailers for every new season starting in 2012. It's more fun and convenient to discussion threads than episode reviews for most of us. Of course, discussion threads only work if you got two folks. I do review shows that didn't get much attention. Last time was Rock Lee's Spin-off series. I'm a soft reviewer. Just giving the highlights. For this particular series being a microseries, it's going to be a difficult given how short the episodes are.

This isn't first time I seen a reverse harem microseries. I seen Diabolik Lovers which was a bit darker than this series. Let's take a gander at our characters.

Love Interests

Sayuri is a promising character. In most Otome games, the gal doesn't grow as much as her love interests. She serves as your viewpoint character. The only gal I seen that has spunk and I like was Felicita of Arcana Famiglia. The guys look normal. I seen Kamigami no Asobi which looked warm and friendly on the outside, but some of the guys had a dark past in them. Amnesia also carries this theme but to a greater and darker twist.

A reverse harem and harem series are like ice cream. You have your love interests which come in different flavors.

Sayuri Haruno

Sayuri Haruno is the main female lead in Bonjour Koiaji Pâtisserie.

Aoi Mitsuki

Aoi Mitsuki is a teacher who is an expert in western sweets using chocolate.

Trope: Bishie

Hanafusa Gilbert

Hanafusa Gilbert is a teacher from France.

Trope: Cutesy, little brother type. - Not sure what trope he fits as of episode 3. Please correct me.

Suzumi Yoshinosuke

Suzumi Yoshinosuke is a teacher who is in charge of Japanese sweets.

Trope: Cold, Strict

Ryō Kōzuki

Ryō Kōzuki is a student at at the Fleurir Confectionary School.

Trope: Tsundere

Supporting Characters

I believe this is my first reverse harem series that had a lot of female characters. I haven't seen a lot of reverse harem shows in my 5 years of watching anime. Most reverse harem shows I watched were based on otome games. It's usually one or 2 gals and a lot of men. Looking forward to see how this show incorporates the characters in its story.

Ran Mochizuki

Ran Mochizuki is Sayuri's friend at the Fleurir Confectionary School.

Nadeshiko Minagawa

Nadeshiko Minagawa is the head teacher of Fleurir Confectionary School.

Tsubaki Sannomiya

Tsubaki Sannomiya is a rich student at Fleurir Confectionary School.

Impressions So Far

After seeing the first three episodes, I do wish it was a normal series. At least, it doesn't cut abruptly like some micro-series, Strange +. Since they have jump in it, I don't have to worry about exposition. They are going to do Show not Tell. Well, I'm hoping for it. So far, they are doing it. Most otome game based anime adaptations resort to the Love Interest of the Week. Ryo is our first one and our first love interest who appeared.

This is a bit skeptical, but I'm hoping it becomes a good show that breaks the rules I seen in the Reverse Harem based Otome Games: Their Anime/Manga Adaptations thread I did back then.

Hope you guys try it if you do like reverse harem shows. It's probably better to marathon it in one try. I just watch it on Saturdays after getting through the usual Fall 2014 shows: Fate Stay Night UBW, Log Horizon 2, and Sword Art Online.

Feel free to share your thoughts here or at the Bonjour Koiaji Patisserie Discussion thread.

| |

I wasn't really sure how to think of this one. It's got all the makings of something I would normally rip apart, yet it has presentation and style rarely found within the mentioned trappings. I guess I'll be doing this in another slightly tweaked format to offer my thoughts of it.

High School of the Dead was a 12-episode horror/ ecchi/ action title that was animated by Madhouse and aired from July 5 to September 20 of 2010. The series is based on the manga series created by Daisuke and Shoji Sato for Monthly Dragon Age magazine since September 2006, with the series currently on hiatus. The anime is licensed for American streaming and video release by Sentai Filmworks.

The Plot

I'd run if I were you.
I'd run if I were you.

A zombie pandemic is affecting the human populace at large with affected humans turned into zombies. A group of high school students and their nurse find themselves on the run as they struggle to survive and encounter the changing world order with societal collapse and the decay of moral codes.

Notable Characters (from left to right)

  • Takashi Komuro- The male lead and unofficial leader among the group of high schoolers as they fight to survive against zombie hordes. He fights at first with a baseball bat, yet later gains a pistol and riot shotgun.
  • Rei Miyamoto- Takashi's childhood friend and possible love interest. Being in her school's sojutsu (spear-wielding) club, she is skilled in wielding a spear as she first fights with a broom having a shattered, sharp end and later upgrades to a semi-automatic rifle with a bayonet attachment.
  • Saeko Busujima- A third-year high school student with a calm and composed personality who is part of her school's kendo club. She fights with a bokken at first and later gains a katana.
  • Saya Takagi- A bespectacled second-year student and friend of Takashi who is also the daughter of an influential right-wing politician. She is unarmed at first, but later makes use of a rifle and pistol throughout her journey with the group.
  • Kohta Hirano- A gun otaku who makes use of a number of firearms throughout the group's journey such as a custom-made nail gun and a sniper rifle.
  • Shizuka Marikawa- The ditzy school nurse who accompanies the group of high school students and serves as their driver while they make use of a school bus and Humvee to trek through zombie-infested areas.
  • Alice Maresato- A 7-year old girl rescued by the group after her father is killed by members of a household not giving them shelter from a horde of zombies.
  • Koichi Shido- A sadistic teacher hated among many of his students due to his twisted and manipulative personality, with no regard for the lives of those he considers weak. He manipulates a number of surviving students into becoming mindless followers of his own personal cult.

The Review

High School of the Dead is more or less something of a parody of zombie movies as a group of high schoolers fight for their lives with the zombie apocalypse hitting the Japanese populace. The anime mostly relishes in the spectacle of seeing zombie hordes getting slain in various ways, the populace struggling with moral inhibitions to ensure self-preservation and plenty of T&A going around thanks to the anime's copious amounts of fan service and ecchi content it shows off. Visually, the anime is one of the better animated 2010 anime titles to be made making creative use of camera positions and effects such as bullet time, zoom shots and swooshing angles to depict the intense zombie-killing action that unfolds, with scenery shots looking vast and well-detailed when the camera pans out to show them off.

Rather nonchalant wearing that in front of guys, aren't we?
Rather nonchalant wearing that in front of guys, aren't we?

While the series is a rarity for anime in being a zombie survival title, it doesn't have much to offer in terms of depth, with the plot and characters to High School of the Dead being rather paper-thin. The plot is mostly repetitive as our group of high schoolers have to regularly fight through zombie hordes, find shelter for a period of time, wind up fleeing when their shelter is breached and repeat. It also often disregards proper logic for the sake of its spectacle as characters are known to not make smart decisions regularly in this series and details such as proper government action and ammo supply are often disregarded.

The characters are not much better as they are mostly archetypal and get little in the way of development, most notable of these characters being an otaku who is seemingly a representation of a stereotypical otaku with his enjoyment of shooting his way through zombies and usually relishing in the women that are within his group. Speaking of the women, High School of the Dead has them purposely designed to be well-endowed and sporting a good number of fan service/ ecchi moments with panty shots, breast jiggling, revealing attire, clothes changing scenes, a bath scene and an orgy. The mentioned fan service is mixed in at many points during the zombie battle scenes, with the series clearly aimed at fans of gory action and ecchi titles.

Overall, High School of the Dead mostly gets by with the style it emphasizes with its presentation and premise, while lacking quite a bit on the end of substance. If you don't mind some mindless entertainment, this would make for a decent rental. But if you are looking for more substance or are not a big fan of gore and ecchi content, then this isn't a title worth picking up.

| |

Hello, my name is Iñigo Montoya, you killed my….no, wrong lines, sorry.

Hello, I’m Kuma_From_Argentina, veteran player and member of the Animevice RPG Hall of Fame, and I’m here today to talk to you about character creation. If you follow three simple rules, it will be extremely easy for you to follow the footsteps of previous players who already made great and influential characters.

Building the Basics

First Rule: Pick a Theme and Concept

Every character has two elements particular to them, their Theme and their Concept.

The Concept

Let’s start with the concept, which is easier. The Concept is the sum of your character expressed in the shortest way possible. If you can’t express through a short concept then something is failing (we will talk more about that later)

For Example:

Gen Shishioh
Gen Shishioh

My character Gen is many things, but he could be sum up into the concept “Hot-Blooded Boxer”

Hot-Blooded gives us a broad description of his personality, impulsive, brash, quick tempered, emotional and more. While Boxer indicates his main “occupation” and evokes images of close combat fighting, rough exteriors, wounds and brawling.

Combining both ideas we can get a better view of the character, A brash boxer surely is an in-fighter, being impulsive means he works on instinct more than on logic, what could guide us to the conclusion that Gen isn’t very bright. With this we can get a more detailed idea about the character. It can also help us to pick a look for him, but that comes later.

The Theme

The theme of a character is trickier, but I will try to explain it as simply as possible. A character’s theme determines secondary elements of said characters; as well it can help us pick the character’s “goal”

Keeping Gen as an example, his theme would be “The Pursuit of Power” Gen wants to be the best on his field, that being boxing. Thus this gives us more insight on him. The character Theme here summed up to the Concept give an even tighter description.

A Hot-Blooded Boxer Pursuing Power, with this we can learn that Gen is searching for power but most likely he is doing it in a straightforward manner, as Hot-Blooded individuals don’t tend to be cowards or impassionate about their goals. So he trains, considering his “occupation” his boxer and his method of achieving his goal is straight-forward he surely trains a lot.

Second Rule: Less is better than more (Without reaching extremes)

When you make the bio you need to start small, overcrowding the character with powers, personality traits and background story adventures make him difficult to use or write with. A character with a basic story a limited yet well established power set and a simple personality is much easier to use and evolve than having a 2000 hundred years old immortal with thousand skills and multiple personality disorder.

This is double for new players, especially when it comes to powers and personality. Having a lot of powers doesn’t make a character interesting; it makes it cumbersome and difficult to put in real danger. Having a character with an overly complex personality makes it very difficult to write about him without accidentally going off character.

Having a shorter yet concise background story allows the character to have the bulk of their adventures in the forum, what’s the point having a character who on paper is veteran of a thousand wars and then he is beaten by easily beatable enemies, it makes the character look bad. Having a short back story is paramount to allow the character to bloom in-game.

Third Rule: Creativity is a must

Searching for pieces of characters and sticking them together with superglue is not making a character. I hate to put it so bluntly, but copy-pastes of wiki’s are to writing a character like mud to a white cloth. The character powers, personality and story need to be part of a whole, not pieces of interesting things the writer gets together.

If a character has the personality of Character A, the Powers of Character B and the Story of Character C, then is a mess. A character is a whole, having a Hot-blooded personality, with Ice powers but a story that says he was trained by Giant Moles is a no go, back to the drawing board. Or having a Magician Type character, with detached personality and aloof demeanor and tell in the story he was raised by a loving family and that he never had any difficulties on his life.

The three elements are pieces of the same puzzle, but if the pieces are all from different sets you may complete the jigsaw, but you won’t have a complete image. For this purpose you need to be creative and design the three elements to fit on each other, instead of simply picking them up from a pile and forcing them together.

Story

I think I said it before, but I will say it again, stories for characters backgrounds must be short, having an overly long character back-story with its own climax and several other events that could affect the world is quite useless. Why is that? Because the whole point of the forum is playing the character, what’s the point of the character if he already beat the evilest thing in the world, or he is already hero of a hundred worlds before reaching the threads?

Keep it short, keep it simple and keep it as an introduction. Imagine is the doorway to the Hidden World* you need to think how did your character enter to the reality that hides in the shadows of regular world instead of making a whole damn story about how he saved ten planets and was a godly alien flying through the cosmos in a unicorn that farts rainbows.

I’m not saying your character must be a blank slate, but he mustn’t be at the end of his journey. See the image besides this. Your character story is a car that enters this massive crossroad through one of the roads (Roads being possible origins, like Magical, Martial Artist, etc) the crossroad is the forum (The Vice Verse)

You need to enter, solve your story inside and then exit. Characters must have an end goal, something that drives them forward to accomplish stuff. A Goalless character doesn’t need anything, so why does he do stuff? Even lulz is a good motivation if you know how to write it.

How to write it? That is more a question that will be solved in the personality segment.

Personality

Characters must have a simple yet compelling personality. “But” is the word that no Personality segment must have. Like he is Humble “but” Arrogant, or he is a berserkering warrior “but” he is a pacifist. You can do contrasts, any character without them is boring, but making the whole personality about those contrasts makes a confusing character.

Another common misconception is that making a simple personality typecasts forever a character, making him always the same. If you develop the character he will change and suit your needs, but you can’t make him grow if the foundations are twisted and built in mud. You need a simple yet sturdy base if you want to build anything for your character.

Then we come to another issue I tend to notice a lot in bios. Making a mentally ill character is typecasting him in a role, just what people tend to think simple personality do. The more complex and twisted the personality is the harder is for it to change. Thus making it impossible to leave a really conflictive character does other stuff apart from being ill.

I’m not saying you can’t do mentally ill characters, but when you do them is better to develop the reason for their illness out in the open, during the threads, or the other option is taking said mental ailment and using it as a comedy tool.

Comedy is another issue people try to avoid; many make cool character that cannot fail in anything they do. Failing isn’t painful, but a possibility to learn, for both the player and the character, as both grow upon discovering new possibilities and variants. Comedy tends to be untouched as most characters either try all the time to be the straight man or the deadpan snarker instead of being the object of the pranks or comedy. Don’t fear the slapstick.

Another important thing to remember is making the personality synch with everything else, I know I said this many times, but the connections between the parts that make a character are extremely important, as said connections are what make the character that, instead of being a Frankenstein monster made of scavenged concepts.

Finally the last thing is as always to be creative, I said it before and I’ll keep hammering it, stealing personality from characters only hurts your character as he will be incomplete and incoherent. Making a personality based upon the concept, theme and story is paramount.

Powers and Combat

I’m sure you wanted to reach this part, you are already thinking what kind of cool shit your character will do, but for a moments let’s talk about the core element of any good RPG and why it is so tightly linked to the powers and skills of a character, shall we?

RPG’s core is “Struggle” your character needs to face odds that can challenge them, so they can learn and make an effort to win. This isn’t just a personal preference is a fact of the game itself, if your character doesn’t struggles then you are doing it wrong and you should be ashamed….well not like that, but you need to rethink him or her.

Struggling is not losing some times and winning others, is showing an effort or withstanding adversity with the character, not just plowing through the stories as if you were playing Dynasty Warriors on Easy mode with a fully leveled Lu Bu. There are videogames (Such as Dynasty Warriors) that are for that and if you are looking that experience I deeply recommend you buy it.

Well, I think I made my point, but why does this point relate to the Powers of the character? Easy, having a shitload of powers or being too powerful diminishes the chances of struggle and without struggle; the salt of the game, your character cannot really develop as anybody will tell you that we learn more out of our mistakes than our successes.

The first thing you need to think is: How does the powers of my character relate to my character concept and theme? Using Gen once again as an example, he is a Boxer, so I developed a power and fighting style that fitted him. I tried to create something new, but I did use elements from different series and things I liked.

He is southpaw boxer with a style reminiscent of Sendou Takeshi from Haijime No Ippo, yet he isn’t exactly like him and he doesn’t have the same moves, but the feel of it is what I tried to emulate. His “Fighting Spirit” Energy has some elements of Ki and Nen, but altered to fit my needs, being an emotional boosted spiritual energy.

The “Winning Combination” Concept is a greatly altered version of the Full Course from Toriko, but instead of making of food is a catalogue of knuckle sandwiches. His currently developing Gainen powers are linked to my taste for Tokusatsu shows and the new techniques he has learnt have different sources of inspiration.

Inspiration being the keyword here, as you don’t have or should copy a power, but you should know said power and think how to alter it into being useful for your character. Just copy-pasting powers into a story won’t make a good character, you could be a good writer, but even the best chef in the world can do squat if he doesn’t have good raw materials to work with.

So basically the three rules for picking your powers are:

1. Creativity is important

2. Inspiration and Homage>Rip-off and Copy-paste

3. Linking powers to concept is the way to go.

When it comes to power level for characters I tend to think it like this. A Hero must be initially five times weaker than his villain. So the character can fight against the “Villain”. When it comes to base level attributes I think the best is for a starting “Fighter Type”

Speed: Peak-Mach 1

Strength Peak-5 tons

Durability: Peak-Building Level

Of course this can be altered; some can be way lower and other way higher. I only made a list of the physical attributes as mental attributes (unless mental powers are involved) are more in the side of story and personality than powers.

Yet a good piece of advice, playing a character way smarter than you can be hard, as you need to make him sound and act smart. But playing a character that is dumber than you is equally challenging as you need to ignore common sense and it can get frustrating when you write, trying to do something and knowing your character can’t know about it while you do. (You want to grab him from his or her jacket and shook him.

When it comes to unique powers is a bit more complicated. My high-school literature teacher always said “There is nothing new under the sun” meaning that you will never make something 100% unique and new, as a living breathing creature that lives in this world you will experience other forms of media and that media will alter your perception and your ideas, thus inspiring different creative outlooks.

Let’s do a new example. We have a Spy character, he is an “Independent Spy escaping his past” (Concept and Theme) from this we could say he is somebody of certain age (over 25 at least) as he needs to have a past, but he could be younger if he was a child soldier or something like that. Independent could tell us things like being a freelance, that he works for money or that he has his own code of ethics. But we don’t care about that right now.

We need to think powers for this character. His profession can give us basic stats and skills, like being faster than stronger or sturdier, able to sneak and hide, have some degree of acrobatics and even hacking. But if we wanted to give him powers, what could we use? His Concept and Theme, of course, so if we think it we can find proper powers for him. Shall we?

Independent: Works alone, doesn’t depend of people, is self sufficient (or tries to be)

Spy: Stealth, Assassination, Infiltration and Sabotage. Is secretive and tends to be stoic.

Escaping his Past: Fleeing, avoiding, hiding, forgetting and time.

Split your Concept and Theme and assign traits or actions related to them see what you can think out those words of phrases.

For example he could be a teleporter, as he tries to flee from something, or phase through walls. He could turn into a virtual conscience as nobody would search for a human being inside a computer, like Astral Travelling but with technology.

He is Independent so he could have a power that reflects that, like having some sort of life-support (Like Cybernetic Implants) or genetic alterations. Animal splicing could grant some sort of Totem-like relation, like bats, rats, snakes or any nocturnal animal that could give the character benefits on his line of work. Or you could make a tangential connection and give him something like Electric Eels that could help him infiltrate and commit sabotage with electric shocks.

The Concept and Theme also help finding a source for those powers. Spy suggests Technology and Skill, but you could have a Mystical Spy, like a Wizard trained in illusions and other useful magic that serves as a freelance agent, or maybe a genetic mutation as I mentioned before that could prove to be useful (In the end it could also be considered tech based if the genetic alteration was a scientific experiment). Ninja’s are another possibility, opening the Ki/Martial Arts origin for the character.

About Combat, this is more of regular play than character building, but sometimes the problems in combat have a root in the character. Something very important in a purely narrative RPG game is to sell. What is selling? Taking damage, accepting that your character wasn’t able to avoid an attack and he receives the impact of it. This is quite important, as is mostly an honor system that oversees the exchanges of combat between player.

Some powers arent easy to sell, either selling taking the damage, or selling them being blocked. Those powers (Like Memory Manipulation, Soul Manipulation or flat out Mind Control) are more suited for narrative encounters than combat encounters and must be used with just measure or the character can be denominated “Broken” meaning that he is too powerful to be faced on a proper fight. My advice is that you leave those powers to either NPC for narrative purposes or forget about them all together.

Picking a Look

Picking a look may seem easy, but it can get pretty hectic…if you do it right. First let’s give some parameters.

1. The fame of the character image you picked is proportional to the typecasting you will subject too. As the character fame will eclipse your character’s

2. Picking a look can be used as the root of the character or an after-thought, it depends on the individual, and while maybe the image sparks the creativity for others is better to search an image that suits the character.

3. No look is eternal, you can change it if you find something you like more, always trying not to make a change too brutal and if you do give a proper justification.

Picking a look for the character can be the seed from where everything sprouts or the finishing touch to a character. My first character in the forum, Batsu, surged from an image I found while browsing Deviantart while Aestus Aquilus, my second heroic character was first thought and I looked for an image afterwards (what in all honesty proved to be a pain in the ass as there aren’t many medieval looking lancers that use fire)

If you choose to make a character based on a look I recommend images that aren’t fanart, but images that are original characters. You can pick the details of the character from the image itself, like making a character that wear an medieval armor behave in a knightly fashion, and picking even smaller details, like the color of his armor or cloak to determine traits of his personality. If you pick a look to use as inspiration you better use the whole thing.

To pick a look after making a character is for the best to make a character simple enough to have multiple choices, and then you can edit or modify some stuff to fit the image a bit more…

Well I think that’s covering all the basics, please leave any questions in this thread and I’ll reply them and add them to this post.

| |

Well as we known in the movie produced by Daft Punk call Interstella 5,555 The 5tory of the 5ecret 5tar 5ystem finish with the band return to the blue little planet but Shep died,but now we have to think what if Daft Punk analize it and they can produce an other movie of Interstella?...

STORY:

Ok. As you this movie soundtrack is the album Discovery so stop here and think what if Daft Punk can write more stories like this movie so we can start with the album Homework in wich it can show how the band of the blue little planet got the fame and childhood of the members of the band Stella,Aperguis,Baryl and Octave.

The Next album is Discovery so here comes the original movie published in 2003.

So we countine with the next album Human after all,in this part countinue the life of the band but Stella who plays the bass, is to sad of Shep´s dead, so the rest of the band decide to gift her a cyborg or robot that looks like Shep (lmagine that blue little planet have more Teconologic), so Stella is more happy but the problem is that robot just walk and say things, there are no feelings no memories..

The adventure next past with the album Alive where the scienetist of that blue little planet discover that they can make Shep live again but they need their body,so they return to the earth to pick up Shep´s Body.

So with the album TRON: Legacy R3CONFIGUR3D they return to their blue little planet but they got poblems in the way, and find Darkwood´s spirit but Shep´s Spirit and they fight and middle show if fighting so Shep´s follow them to the earth, and this part the scientist try to Re-Alive Shep.

At Last Random Acess Memories,in this part Shep is alive but with out memories so they try that Shep reover their memories but finaly Shep rememeber this life.

BUT.

But. there is a But the Album Homework is the soundtrack of the movie D.A.F.T a story about Dogs Androids Firemen and Tomatoes,and of curse the album Alive is like a concert of Daft Punk in 2007 and the Big But of the album TRON: Legacy R3CONFIGUR3D of the soundtrack of TRON;Legacy.

In really this a idea if Daft Punk and Leji Matsumoto could make more movies like Intestella 5,555...

| |

Hello fellow brothas and sisthas! Got some good news. I made over 50 Hentai pages! You know characters (mostly chicks), books, and anime. Came from MvC to troll in the battle forums b/c I got nothing to do. Then, I saw the The Hentai Club. Every forum I went to look down on Hentai. AV was my home. Folks were chilled and talked about things and hunting for certain fetishes for fellow bros and sis. Making H pages sort of give something to do. Felt I was actually helping the site. Unlike what I did before. All I did was troll in the forums, post shit in the wrong forums like the RPG forums.

Viva La Hentai 4 EVER!

I owe my thanks to my home bros.

  • Daniel Newton - Neva forgive him for rejecting the small boobs wiki page. That's injustice in the wiki, man. Wikia is freaking strict with Hentai. Cant post a pic of a girl with bulging nipples. that why I love av. AV is lax with Hentai image policy but a brotha cant make a small boobs page. He was the Hentai Dictator who made the Hentai page for us editors.
  • Sonata - Most Chilled Dude in the site who has seen the most Hentai of anybody in the site. His gangsta name - Porno Shogun.
  • Takashichea - Bro's nickname is S & M Samurai because he's the most overworked guy in the site and endured the most abuse by his comrades. I believe he's masochistic inside. Good wiki mod but strict forum mod. Was banned by Taka for insulting a battle user. Bro gave me a second chance. Helped me with Hentai Club so many times. My mission before I get banned again is to make him confess that he loves Hentai.
  • BigHeart711 - Code Name: Vanilla Angel. Funniest bro I ever hanged out with in the forums. Get my jokes better than Taka bro.
  • Dekken - Silent Photographer who gets good images.
  • Whiskers - Onee-Chan - sweetest gal I met in the site and hangs out in the Hentai Club.

Oh shit, title is supposed to be PAGES not Characters.

| |

Episode 3 of Nanatsu no Taizai portends some pretty great stuff for the series; I mean, just look at that animation. While not quite perfect, I can see the series maintaining Hunter X Hunter level consistency, not only in storytelling but artistic quality.

In which case we just might have stumbled upon the perfect replacement for HXH. Diana is exactly the way I expected her to be, down to her uncharacteristically small voice. And Gilthunder is pretty intimidating for a foe.

Knowing what I know now in the manga makes his actions earlier on in the series so much more interesting to watch, especially taking into account what he had to go through to fight Meliodas.

Speaking of Meliodas, his actions in Episode 3 more or less mimicked his solution to Hendricksen in this week’s chapter, which was basically taking the beating of his life in order to achieve some clever goal. The sins are coming together so much faster than I remember. 

It shouldn’t be too long before my favorite sins, King and Ban, finally emerge.

THE CHAPTER:
The end is here; Meliodas makes a final near fatal move to stop his god-like foe.

MY THOUGHTS:

That was anti-climatic; not Meliodas and Hendy. Elizabeth, it’s been a while (three or four chapters) since she last featured in any substantial manner; which normally wouldn’t be the worst thing to happen for a character.

Except I was pretty hyped about her actually doing something to bring Hendricksen down; so, basically, she transforms, acquires some fancy eye tattoos and now she’s content to just sit back and watch Meliodas take all that punishment?

I am not complaining per say, I am still happy that Elizabeth is going to start playing an important role in events; however I wish they had built upon the momentum of her awakening.

-The Nanatsu No Taizai Story
If Deadly Sins wasn’t a mere 99 chapters old I would have already began talking about the end by now. The story began with a kingdom in peril, the seven deadly sins scattered and hunted for a crime they didn’t commit, and the figures responsible for forcing them into this defensive position planning to execute some nefarious plot even as they enjoyed the adorations of the people.

At the present the Seven Deadly Sins have more or less united (save for Merlin). The Kingdom has or will recognize their role as heroes in protecting them from Hendricksen. The rot within the Holy knights order has been all but extinguished, especially with Dreyfus’ demise.

And we now find ourselves facing the root of all evil in the kingdom; Hendricksen, the one who either started it all or chose to continue in perpetrating an evil plot.

Upon his defeat, which should be soon, Deadly Sins will have wrapped up a large chunk of its story; and that makes one wonder: What’s next?

-The Future
With the deadly sins story all but explored, it might be time to take a step back and delve deeper into the lives of each sin. We have met the fairies, or at least learnt enough about them to have met their kind. We now understand how King ended up on Meliodas’ team.

The focus should then logically turn to the giantess Diana; where did she come from? What happened to her people, and what circumstances brought her to Meliodas?

And then there is Ban’s crazy immortality and whatever secrets Merlin is keeping about the day she helped Hendricksen and Dreyfus frame the Sins. We haven’t even began to scratch the surface of the mystery that is Gowther. Who is he? Better yet what is he? And can he even die?

We learnt a while back that, before coming to the kingdom, Meliodas served under another king and protected a different land. Then things went very wrong. That is a story I can’t wait to delve into.

  Nanatsu no Taizai is far from over. I don’t think we have even began to explore the world of this manga. At the very least, Deadly Sins should last another 100 chapters.

RATING: 6/10, awesome fight.
| |


These 25 pages flew by so fast, and it wasn’t because I found the material to be all that engaging. In fact it was the opposite. Chapter 342 didn’t strive to do anything new. And if this is the author’s attempt at taking things easy and showing a gradual development in character and abilities, he or she needs to stop.

THE CHAPTER:
Everyone wants to get stronger. Rai reminisces about Muzaka’s last words.

MY THOUGHTS:
Oh who am I kidding, this chapter wasn’t slow. It was boring. No, it was slow and boring, not really worth waiting for over 7 days. The problems that appeared two chapters ago seemed to re-emerge worse than ever this week.

+The Good
There was nothing great or even marginally entertaining about chapter 342. Even the art couldn’t sell me this stale and repetitive material. This being the first manga series and chapter I read in a given week, if Noblesse is portending what is to be expected of upcoming chapters in the next few days I might as well prepare myself for some disappointment.

Okay, fine, M21 looked pretty decent in his new form; you can never fault Noblesse for its art.

+The Bad
Everything. This chapter took 4 pages worth of material and dragged it out over 25 pages; it got quickly irritating watching many of the characters in this chapter basically go round and round in their arguments, repeating themselves over and over again without saying much.

Maybe it is simply the lack of elegance of Manhwa that shined through Noblesse, that tendency by most Manhwa to basically butcher the structure of their dialogue; because Regis’ conversation with Gejutel lasted way too long, and neither noble was actually saying anything new.

And then there was all that panel time wasted on internal dialogue and conversations and wishes about getting stronger. I know this is shonen, but I get irritated when series such as this repeat themes and ideas we have encountered several times before.

Seriously, this chapter didn’t do anything.

RATING: 3/10, I didn’t think it possible, that I would encounter a Noblesse chapter so devoid of excitement and intrigue that it would bore me; Noblesse chapter 342 actually bored me.
| |

Welcome to this week of manga releases! Just a bit week shy of Halloween. We have a medium size for today.

I see we have manga series for the recent anime series that came out this year, Witchcraft Works and No Game, No Life. For Witchcraft Works, if you love magic, action, and comedy with a lot of beautiful gals, you should check it out. For folks who love games and shows that put everything in a gamble, No Game, No Life is for you.

Familiar manga series I would recommend No. 6 for dystopic fans, Arpeggio for folks who love a dominating female cast, Animal Land for Zatch Bell fans, and Haganai for comedic/slice of life harem fans.

I would love to hear your recommendations on these series. All comments are welcome. Thank you.

Disclaimer: I'm just promoting the official release and the publishers. I'm not selling you anything. This is to combat piracy and get fans to support the official release. All summaries are from ANN.

Sources

Notes

  • Air Gear 32 is listed by Amazon and Right Stuf on November 11.

Manga Releases

Animal Land Volume 10
  • Distributor: Kodansha
  • Suggested Retail Price: $10.99

To save Riemu, Taroza and his friends continue heading to the top of the Tower of Babel. Stuck in a gladiator-style arena where the exits are only small enough to fit a fraction of the animals, Taroza and the bigger beasts have no choice but to fight their way out. Taroza's power is unleashed like never before, testing the limits of the human body, but will it be enough to defeat the abominable Chimera standing in their way?

Arppegio of Blue Steel Volume 2
  • Distributor: Seven Seas Entertainment
  • Suggested retail price: $12.99

For fans of Attack on Titan comes an all-new science fiction manga epic

In the early 21st century, the majority of Earth’s landmass is submerged due to rising sea levels. Enter the Fleet of Fog, a host of sentient alien battleships of unknown origin who easily decimate earth’s naval forces. Humanity is now on the verge of extinction.

In the year 2039, the stalwart Captain Chihaya Gunzou and his intrepid crew on the Blue Steel fleet may be humanity’s last chance to fight off the alien invaders. The Blue Steel fleet happens to contain a secret weapon that could turn the tide of war: a mysterious I-401 submarine that can transform into a girl.

Haganai Volume 9
  • Distributor: Seven Seas Entertainment
  • Suggested retail price: $12.99

The New York Times bestseller manga about fandom continues!

This is the ninth volume of an ongoing manga series that is sure to appeal to today’s manga fans in the same way The Big Bang Theory appeals to geeks.

Recent high school transfer student Hasegawa Kodaka is pathetically inept at making friends. Kodaka is an outcast, with his natural blond hair which he inherited from his deceased English mother, and his unpleasant, fierce gaze. When he comes across the brash loner Mikazuki Yozora, who typically chats with her imaginary friend, the two outsiders become the unlikeliest of allies.

Realizing that they have no hope of a normal social life, the two rejects decide to form a group called “The Neighbor’s Club” in order to make friends and maybe even learn a thing or two about social skills. As luck would have it, five new members join the club who are more socially awkward than they are. Will these quirky misfits ever make normal friends, or are they all doomed to social failure?

Monster Vol. 2
  • Distributor: Viz Media
  • Suggested retail price: $19.99

Dr. Tenma has fallen into a trap set by Johan and is now wanted by the police as a serial killer. While narrowly evading the police dragnet, Tenma pursues Johan in an attempt to prove his own innocence and prevent another murder, edging closer to the Monster by tracing his secret past.

As the only person who knows what Johan is, Tenma searches for Nina, who has been captured by neo-Nazis. His investigation leads him to uncover a horrific fact: the ultra-rightists are conspiring to set Johan up as a second Adolf Hitler!

This omnibus "perfect" edition collects volumes 3-4.

No Game, No Life Vol. 1
  • Distributor: Seven Seas Entertainment
  • Suggested retail price: $12.99

The story of No Game, No Life centers around Sora and Shiro, a brother and sister who are brilliant (but unemployed) gamers whose Internet fame has spawned urban legends all over the Internet. One day, they are summoned by a boy named "God" to an alternate world. There, God has prohibited war and declared this to be a world where "everything is decided by games" - even national borders. Humanity has been driven back into one remaining city by the other races. Will Sora and Shiro, the good-for-nothing brother and sister, become the "Saviors of Humanity" in this alternate world?

No. 6 Volume 9
  • Distributor: Kodansha Comics
  • Suggested retail price: $10.99

THE SKY IS BURNING.

With Rat critically injured protecting him, Shion finally returns to NO. 6. But what he finds there is not the tranquil utopia he left behind, but a city in the grip of panic and chaos. As the “holy city” collapses in on itself, Shion and Rat put will the future of humanity — and their future together — on the line in the shocking final volume of NO. 6!

Sankarea Volume 9
  • Distributor: Kodansha Comics
  • Suggested retail price: $10.99

LIGHTS, CAMERA, RESURRECTION!

Though barely escaping with their lives, Chihiro returns with the rest of his crew to Shiyoh City with newfound hope for Bub and Rea. However, the research that led to Bub’s recovery took its toll on Rea, leaving her with only vague memories of the “boy with the cat-ear hairdo.” But Chihiro will do anything to bring Rea back to normal, and with his camera, some props and a few friends who can carry a tune, he’s going to set the scene for Rea’s big come back!

Sunny Volume 4
  • Distributor: Viz Media
  • Suggested retail price: $22.99

What is Sunny? Sunny is a car. Sunny is a car you take on a drive with your mind. It takes you to the place of your dreams. Sunny is the story of beating the odds, in the ways that count. It’s the brand-new masterwork from Eisner Award-winner Taiyo Matsumoto, one of Japan’s most innovative and acclaimed manga artists. Translated by Tekkonkinkreet film director Michael Arias!

The fourth installment of this poignant series focused on the young lives of a group of foster children travels their trajectory from painful yearning to bittersweet belonging.

Vagabond Volume 36
  • Distributor: Viz Media
  • Suggested retail price: $9.95

Musashi continues to battle a different type of foe when he comes to the aid of an orphaned boy and tries to enrich the soil of a barren land. Will he be able to single-handedly take on the forces of nature in the manner that he took on the seventy swordsmen of the Yoshioka dojo? Or will a devastating famine ravage the village?

Witchcraft Works Volume 1
  • Distributor: Vertical
  • Suggested retail price: $12.95

Honoka Takamiya is an average student. Ayaka Kagari, his classmate who sits next to him in class, on the other hand, is the class "Princess". Ayaka is tall, strikingly gorgeous, and has a regalness to her that almost exudes a royal attitude. Despite their proximity in school, over the school year the two have never shared much conversation... until today.

So today as class ended, Takamiya was suddenly attacked by a cat-eared witch and her band of bunny-costumed thugs! And if that were not enough of a shock, this average joe would then be saved like a Princess by none other than Ayaka Kagari... a witch herself!

| |

Welcome everyone to the first Supernatural reviews in this site! I'm doing this to promote the Movies & TV Club and keep the Screened spirit alive. We had a Supernatural discussion, but I wasn't so active due to Anime Vice projects and school. I'll try to keep the reviews on time if I can.

I'm a light reviewer because I believe it help boost the discussion if I just cover a few parts like the good, bad, and bizarre moments. That's my style.

I'll try to post this as regular thread, but I hit flood fail today.

Summary

Beware of Spoilers!

Season 10's first 2 episodes starts us off on three stories that overlap with each other. You got Dean living his life as a demon with Crowley, Sam searching for his brother, and Castiel trying to solve problems with Hannah on the angels.

Good

  • I love the three stories we had. Supernatural has such a big cast. It has potential for spin-offs and such, and we almost had a spin-off series. The way they spotlight the characters this time was great. It was great to see Hannah having character development. She contrasts Castiel because she is an Angel who doesn't understand humans. It resembles Castiel back then. It was intriguing.
  • Brotherly issues build the series. You can't have Supernatural without Dean and Sam arguing and fighting. This isn't too different. Used to be Sam being the antagonist. Now, it's Dean's turn. These brothers dream of a normal, peaceful life, but fate ties them in.
  • Metatron still poses a threat. He's nerdier than Crowley, but he plays a big role. Can't wait to see what he does this season.
  • We got a new character, Cole Trenton. Looking forward to his backstory. Still don't know why Dean killed his father. I assume his father was a human who got turned into a monster back then.

Bad

Well, I don't have one. I'm pretty lax reviewer. If I try to pick something bad, I might enjoy things less. I do notice when folks become over analytical in anime and manga, they won't be satisfied with new shows because all anime and manga recycle tropes and cliches. I do pick out things that are annoying for the bad section. This time, I don't recall any.

Let me know if you have one.

Best Moments

  • Dean singing songs such as Heartbreaker, Imaginary Lover, and I'm too. I remember I first heard I'm too song on a NewGrounds parody video of Kakashi.
  • Crowley holding a picture of Dean and himself smiling with the song, Lonely Girl, playing in the background. It's one of those things that make Crowley one of the best characters for me personally. He got style.

Overall, this season is looking great. Hopefully, Supernatural keeps Hannah. I haven't seen a lot of female angels nowadays. Naomi was a great character who was brutal, but she has her good side. I love the show ever since I got into season 4. I did backtrack to see the other seasons by hitting the public library and renting DVDs. Missed a few episodes here and there from season 4.

Here's the episode preview via CW:

Thank you everyone! I encourage folks to hit the TV club or start some reviews on shows.

| |

Welcome to this week's DVD/Blu-Ray releases! We are one week before Halloween. It's a bit short selection. I don't mind it because it usually takes 2 hours or less for DVD releases and usually 5 hours for manga releases.

Out of the 5 shows, I only have 2 familiar series and quick two cents on them.

  • Kill la Kill - One of most favorite anime series back in 2013. I admit it was overly hyped and overrated, but it was entertaining. It's not for everyone. If you don't like tons of fan service (this show does take it to extreme with the outfits and Gainax Bounce). If I had to criticize the show, it's that the series is a bit repetitive, and it was more exciting in the beginning than the end. You can bring up deep meanings about its fan service and feminism and red thread or not. This series has potential for it.
  • Sunday Without God - This one is a bit confusing for me to explain especially how the series ended. I did finish the series and will recommend trying the first 4 or 5 episode (the first arc) because it was the best part of the series for me personally because of a certain character who made the show for me, Hampnie. It's about how god abandoned the world, and the dead cannot be put to rest. You have dead people and living people. Not like zombies. Grave Keepers are there to help the dead be at peace. If you like the synopsis, give it a try.

Unfamiliar shows I would try, Bayonetta. I haven't played the game, but I'm interested in the film itself. Using hair as a weapon remind of a lot of anime characters such as Sunny and JasDevi.

I would love to hear your recommendations on these series. All comments are welcome. Thank you.

Disclaimer: I'm just promoting the official release and the publishers. I'm not selling you anything. This is to combat piracy and get fans to support the official release. All summaries are from ANN.

Sources

Notes

  • Bayonetta is only listed on Right Stuf.
  • Kill la Kill Volume 2 is listed on Right Stuf and ANN.

DVD and Blu Ray Releases

Bayonetta: Bloody Fate DVD/Blu-ray (Hyb)
  • Distributor: FUNimation
  • Suggested Retail Price: $34.98

Twenty years after her awakening, Bayonetta is still searching for clues that could help unravel the mysteries of her dark past. Aided in her quest by the clandestine weapon smith Rodin - and his deadly creations: Scarborough Fair - Bayonetta continues to leave a trail of angel corpses in her wake. Her search for answers leads to encounters with a mysterious - and eerily familiar - little girl, a vengeance-obsessed journalist, and a deadly white-haired beauty that seems to know more about Bayonetta than the witch herself.

Special Features: Audio Commentary, Storyboards, Trailers. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

A Letter to Momo (DVD)
  • Distributor: New Video Group
  • Suggested retail price: $19.97

The last time Momo saw her father, they had a fight. Now all she has left to remember him by is an incomplete letter penned with the words "Dear Momo," but nothing more. Moving with her mother to the remote Japanese island of Shio, Momo soon discovers three Yokai living in her attic, a trio of mischievous spirit creatures that only she can see and who create mayhem in the tiny seaside community as she tries desperately to keep them hidden. But these funny monsters have a serious side and may hold the key to helping Momo discover what her father had been trying to tell her.

Ghost in the Shell: Arise (Blu-Ray 1-2)
  • Distributor: FUNimation Entertainment
  • Suggested retail price: $39.98

This set contains Ghost in the Shell: Arise Borders 1 and 2 on Blu-ray and DVD!

Border 1: Ghost Pain

When cyborg hacker Motoko Kusanagi is hired to investigate a devastating bombing, she must fight her way through a maze of phantom memories to unlock her mysterious past – and track down the evil mastermind behind the attacks.

Border 2: Ghost Whispers

Witness the formation of the legendary Public Security Section 9. When a clandestine organization hacks every car in the city, Kusanagi recruits a lethal team of cyber operatives that includes a badass brawler with Special Forces training, an explosives expert, a technology specialist, and a chain-smoking jack-of-all-trades with a sordid past. Together this ruthless gang of enforcers sets out to clamp down on the chaos and make the city safe again.

Kill la Kill (Blu-Ray) or (DVD) Vol. 2
  • Distributor: Aniplex of America
  • Suggested retail price: $39.98 (DVD), $49.98 (Blu-Ray)

Ryuko Matoi spends her days battling student after student as they continue to aggressively confront her in hopes to raise their own status and living conditions as promised to them by Satsuki Kiryuin. In the midst of all the chaos, Uzu Sanageyama, one of the Elite Four, gets permission to face Ryuko in battle. He corners Ryuko with his super-human vision, but Ryuko manages to fight back! This leads Satsuki to resort to drastic measures as she declares to begin the great "Naturals Election," or "Battle Royale!!"

Now every student at Honnouji Academy must enter an unbelievable ceremony of destruction as they clash to survive for seven whole days to participate in "The King of the Hill Final Battle." There, Ryuko finally comes face-to-face with the formidable Ira Gamagoori!

Contains episodes 5-9. Special Features: Textless Opening & Ending, Web Version Previews. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles, Spanish subtitles.

Sunday Without God - Complete Collection (Blu-Ray) or (DVD)
  • Distributor: Sentai Filmworks
  • Suggested retail price: $69.98 (Blu-Ray), $59.98 (DVD)

Fifteen years ago on a Sunday, God abandoned the world and closed the gate to Heaven, leaving the souls of humankind trapped in limbo. With the dead unable to rest and the living unable to have children, the world is slowly coming to a halt. The only key to mankind's salvation rests with the Gravekeepers, mysterious beings charged with the task of sending the deceased to their final resting place.

Twelve-year-old Ai, one of the last children in the world, soon finds herself shouldered with the burden of becoming her village's newest Gravekeeper. But beneath the village's unassuming exterior lies a dark secret that is revealed with the arrival of a gun-wielding stranger in black. With her position as a Gravekeeper now uncertain, Ai has no choice but to set out to put the living dead to rest. But in a world where no one can die, is death truly the ultimate blessing?

Contains episodes 1-13. Special Features: Clean Opening Animations, Clean Closing Animations. Spoken Languages: English, Japanese, English subtitles.

| |

i was reading a list about really good anime and i found psycho pass and i have seen it every were so i thought it couldn't be a bad idea and it really wasn't a bad idea so watch it sometime and follow me.

Mandatory Network

Submissions can take several hours to be approved.

Save ChangesCancel