Movie Monday: Cast Away

This week for Movie Monday I’m back with a movie most people remember for a certain volleyball. It’s Cast Away!

Plot Synopsis: In December 1995, Chuck Noland is a time-obsessed systems engineer, who travels worldwide resolving productivity problems at FedEx depots. He is in a long-term relationship with Kelly Frears, with whom he lives in Memphis, Tennessee. Although the couple wants to get married, Chuck’s busy schedule interferes with their relationship. A Christmas with relatives is interrupted when Chuck is summoned to resolve a problem in Malaysia. While flying through a violent storm, his plane crashes into the Pacific Ocean. Chuck escapes the sinking plane and is saved by an inflatable life raft, but loses the emergency locator transmitter. He clings to the life raft, loses consciousness, and floats all night before washing up on an island…

Plot: The plot of this movie is great, although it’s also rather depressing at the same time as it’s hopeful. I won’t go too into it, in case by some odd reason you’ve never seen this, but it’s definitely one of those movies everyone needs to watch at least once in their life.

Characters: Chuck, portrayed by Tom Hanks, is an awesome main character. Honestly given that he’s pretty much the only character I can’t say much more than that. Although there is Wilson….

Cinematography: This movie is incredibly well done, and while there are no special effects along the lines of something you’d see in a Star Wars film, those that were done were done fairly well.

Musical Score: I honestly don’t remember it much at all, but I do remember thinking that it fit the movie.

Overall: A must see movie, if you’ve never watched it you really ought to at least once.

For those who like: Survival Stories, Tom Hanks, A 1 Character Movie, Depressing Story, A Hopeful Story.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

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Anime Sunday: Real Girl Episode 01 Impressions

This week for Anime Sunday I’m back with another Spring 2018 series. It’s my Real Girl Episode 01 Impressions!

Plot Synopsis: High school student Tsutsui Hikaru is shunned by his classmates for his otaku behavior. One day, as he was sentenced for pool cleaning duty for being late, and is paired with the beautiful but reputed troublemaker Higurashi Iroha…

Plot: The plot is okay, and I’ve covered this series before in a past column way back when my Saturday columns were known as Shoujo Saturday. It’s nothing much different than the first chapter of the series so if you read that you won’t see anything new.

Characters: The cast is okay, although there are some really cringeworthy moments. However that’s more due to the nature of the series, rather than any character faults in particular,

Music: The music’s okay, but nothing special.

Art: The animation is at least well done, but again it’s nothing spectacular either.

Overall: A decent adaptation, and great intro to the series, but it’s nothing spectacular either.

For those who like: Romance, Slice of Life, School Life, Drama, Teenage Angst, Good Artwork.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Serial Saturday: Arcane Emperor Chapters 1-9 by Aternus

This week for Serial Saturday I’m back with a series that I was hoping the author would start updating again, and they did so I’ve decided to cover it. It’s Arcane Emperor Chapters 1-9 by Aternus!

Plot Synopsis: Rainer, an amateur arcanist and college student, sought to create a new spell far surpassing the magic of the few he inherited from his grandfather, walking on walls. Yet the interference of an unknown event during the casting of his spell led him to be thrown through space and time…

Plot: The plot of this series is pretty freaking awesome, and while there are some who might say that it’s generic and uninnovative, I would say that it doesn’t matter as it’s done in a way that is highly enjoyable and entertaining. I was really disappointed that the author had a 6 month break, but now that they have started updating again I’m quite happy and hopeful that it will get the finish that it deserves.

Characters: Rainer is a pretty awesome male lead, he’s quite genre savy and while he was trying to walk on a wall, that doesn’t stop him from enjoying the hell out of the mishap. The rest of the cast is rather small, and I won’t spoil it by giving out names, it is quite an enjoyable cast at this time.

Overall: A solid and rather excellent series, that takes the Isekai genre and carves it into what could be a masterpiece.

For those who like: Fantasy, LitRPGs, Isekai, Drama, Action, Adventure, Excellent Plot, Fantastic Cast of Characters.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above, but I highly suggest giving this series a shot.

Retro Game Friday: F-Zero X

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m back with a game that is often overlooked. It’s F-Zero X!

Plot Synopsis: This didn’t have a plot.

Gameplay: This is a high speed racing game ala Wipeout, but with a hell of a lot less forgiveness. You could and were able to destroy your competitors on the race track by bashing them off it to their doom, and that was actually a whole game mode in and of itself. Honestly I had a lot of fun with it, as I’ve always been a bit of a speed freak, it being my go to mode of combat, or in this case racing, in pretty much any game.

Art: The art has aged really poorly, but that’s to be expected with a Nintendo 64 game.

Music: I don’t remember much of it, but it was intense that much I do remember.

Overall: A great game and loads of fun, if you had the reflexes to play it at least.

For those who like: High Speed Games, Racing, Unforgiving Gameplay.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

TNT: The Bears Bear a Bare Kuma Chapters 27-50 by Kumanano

This week for Translation Necessary Thursday I’m back with the second set of chapters in Yuna’s travels. It’s The Bears Bear a Bare Kuma Chapters 27-50 by Kumanano!

Plot Synopsis: Having gotten used to life in this new world she’s found herself in Yuna now is dealing with some troubles in the town, mostly caused by her rather sudden appearance.

Plot: This is a fun set of chapters and honestly is quite heartwarming, while being hilarious given that Yuna just does as she pleases. Like I said in my previous post on this series, it’s like the Honey Badge. The plot moves along fairly well, but given that this is really all about Yuna just doing as she pleases and having pretty much no equal, don’t expect any villains to pop up.

Characters: We get to meet a few new characters, with Cliff probably being my favorite newcomer. Yuna is still the star of the show though.

Overall: A solid and amusing set of chapters in a series that’s incredibly heartwarming.

Bookish Wednesday: Awakening by Dhayaa Anbajagane

This week for Bookish Wednesday I’m back with another LitRPG. It’s The Eternal: Awakening by Dhayaa Anbajagane!

Plot Synopsis: It wasn’t my fault. I didn’t mean to look for things I wasn’t supposed to. I didn’t mean for death to come after me. I really didn’t. But it still happened. I’m Zoran and my name is the only thing I remember about myself. I don’t know why I woke up in a forest, why I taste blood in my mouth, and why I see weird screens in front of me. From the time I first woke up, all I wanted was to find out who I was. But what I didn’t expect was for my search to spark something that was never meant to happen.

Plot: This is an okay series, but honestly it’s rather lackluster. It’s not inventive nor is it revolutionary. It’s good for wasting time, but that’s about it. If you want a better LitRPG you’d be better off listening to the Emerilia series.

Characters: Zoran is an okay main character, but incredibly mediocre. The rest of the cast is no better, in fact I can’t remember the names of the other characters, which is never a good sign for me. That is always a possibility when you have thousands upon thousands of stories stuck in your head, but I tend to at least remember some important character names, this series though? Not a one.

Overall: Skip it, it’s not really worth your time unless you need some sort of LitRPG to waste time on.

For those who like: LitRPGs, GameLit, Action, Adventure, Drama.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above, or Mediocrity.

Video Game Tuesday: Strategy Games

This week for Video Game Tuesday I’m back with a look at some different types of games and the bigger differences between them and the common features. It’s all about Strategy Games!

Strategy Games?: There are two main types of games that come to mind when you talk strategy games at least to me. There is the RTS, or Real Time Strategy, and TBS, or Turn-Based Strategy. They are very different in how you play them, and while there are some common strategies between the two, how you go about them is completely different.

RTS?: So RTS games are games like Starcraft or Command and Conquer. These take place in real time with you giving orders and building armies and bases to destroy your opponents. Often the biggest skill that professionals in this kind of game look for is APM, or Actions Per Minute. Getting 100+ APM consistently is generally a good thing and means you may be cut out to try becoming a pro if you so desire. If you can’t do that you’re unlikely to be able to ever compete at a professional level. I think I remember getting 100+ apm for brief spurts of time in some games of Starcraft 2, but I never considered myself ever cut out for the pro scene. One because I dislike competing immensely, and two because even getting 100+ for those brief times is already rather incredible with my physical disability.

TBS?: Games like the Civilization series are a good example, these aren’t always as action or war oriented, and sometimes you can even play a game and win without ever getting into conflict once, at least with AI opponents.  I tend to prefer these sorts of games, although I’ve not played too many strategy games in general with more in the RTS category, although those are mainly for the custom game maps and types that you could create in games like Warcraft 3. Angel Arena is still one of my favorite custom game types, beating over any DotA clone easily.

So what are some similarities between the two?: Well in both games the key to success, at least to me, is to always increase your production capabilities. This means increasing the number of your base or cities as the game progresses to constantly produce units that you may need to fight off an opponent quickly. In RTS games this means quickly building your worker units and getting a steady supply of resources as your first steps. Once that happens you can start building up your fighting force while constructing your base. In TBS games this is still the case, but it’s more about buildings and land improvements at least in the Civ series.

In addition always upgrading your units with tech upgrades as much as possible is always a key to winning, if your units can launch more powerful attacks than your opponent, battles will quickly turn your way even if you have the same amount of troops in a battle.

What’s different?: Well in RTS games speed is always going to be a priority, can you attack your enemy before they get a defense going? If so you have a quick victory in sights and can probably clinch a fast win. In TBS games, it’s more about location and choke points. If you can block your enemy from getting resources or funnel them into one area you can easily defend your bases and prevent them from overwhelming you.

That’s it for this week’s Video Game Tuesday. What are some of your favorite strategy games? What type are they? Leave a comment below!