Bookish Wednesday: Paragons by Jeff Sproul

This week for Bookish Wednesday I’m back with a LitRPG book I could’ve sworn I’ve covered already. It’s Paragons, Sigil Online Book 01, by Jeff Sproul!

Plot Synopsis: Loss was nothing new to an orphan like Riley. But when the online persona he’d spent years building, was ripped away by a monster with unbelievable power, everything changed….

Plot: The plot is okay, and it’s more about character growth than anything else, including the LitRPG part. Sure that’s a rather large portion of it, but honestly this is a story about Riley growing up.

Characters: Riley is not an amazing person, which makes him a fairly decent lead character. The rest of the cast is just as good, although honestly I wish the story had a bit more of Warcry in it.

Overall: A good, but not exceptionally spectacular LitRPG. There are much worse series out there, but there are better as well.

For those who like: LitRPGs, Urban Fantasy, Superheroes, Super Powers, Flawed Main Characters, Good Plot, Decent Cast of Characters.

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

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Video Game Tuesday: E3 2018 Reactions

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m back with my thoughts on this year’s Christmas in June for gamers. It’s my E3 2018 Reactions!

EA: Well I was expecting pretty much everything that was shown, except for hearing about Jedi: Fallen Order, a game that truly slipped my mind in my predictions post. We knew that it was in development previously, but I had forgotten about it. It’s being developed by Respawn Entertainment, of Titanfall fame, and will release in Late 2019.

Microsoft: We had quite a few surprises, including the news that 4 independent studios have been bought by Microsoft, including Ninja Theory of Heavenly Sword fame, and DmC reboot infamy. My favorite thing was learning about Tales of Vesperia coming to the current set of consoles remastered and featuring everything from the JP only PlayStation 3 version. Considering that it’s one of my top 5 Tales of games, I’m really stoked for this.

Bethesda: We knew about Fallout 76 prior to E3, and rumors were confirmed that it was going to be an Online Multiplayer game. How that works out I’m not too sure, given the turn based nature of previous Fallout games that I’ve played (I haven’t touched 4). Not shocking anyone we learned that Elder Scrolls VI is in development, probably for the next generation of consoles. Maybe they’ll fix the nature of console mods so they don’t screw over mod creators by the time it releases and PlayStation owners won’t be screwed more than the Xbox players already are because they insulted mod makers. I have little hope of that, given the unruly nature of mods.

Square Enix: A really disappointing show, while in the Microsoft conference we learned about Kingdom Hearts III’s release date, we didn’t get much more info from the Square Enix press event. That being said it’ll feature both Frozen and Pirates of the Carribean, so that will be interesting to say the least. No other news of note really came from their event except that Monster Hunter World and Final Fantasy XIV would be getting a collaboration event.

Ubisoft: In probably the most shocking news. and yet not at the same time, from this year’s E3 is the fact that Ubisoft is releasing Just Dance for the Wii. Yes you read that right, for the Wii, not the WiiU or the Switch, the Wii. In less shocking news we saw a bunch of the next Assassin’s Creed game which takes us to Greece as a child of Leonidas of Sparta. Frankly I’m not too excited for that, Unity really ruined the series for me, and despite only hearing good things about Origins, I’ve no desire to get back into that series quite yet. In more disappointing news, Beyond Good & Evil 2 still hasn’t really started development, I mean come on really Ubisoft? Just make the freaking game already.

Sony: In one of the oddest Press Conferences ever, with showgoers being shuffled to multiple locations instead of it being just in a single spot, Sony showed off a bunch of new things including the Spiderman game that I’m personally hoping is amazing. Whether it is once remains to be seen on Launch this September. We also got some more looks at Destiny’s latest “Expansion” Forsaken, which Bungie says will fix all our big issues. I have my doubts, but that’s a post for another day.

Nintendo: In what might just be the biggest news of E3, Nintendo formally announced Super Smash Bros Ultimate, which will feature EVERY character, from EVERY entry in the entire series. Newcomers confirmed thus far are Splatoon’s Squid Kids, and Ridley from Metroid. I was hoping to hear about someone like Isaac from Golden Sun, but Ridley will do for now.

There are lots more stuff that I haven’t covered, but this post is large enough already. I may, or may not, make a Part 2 of this in the near future.

That’s it for this week’s Video Game Tuesday.

 

Movie Monday: School of Rock

This week for Movie Monday I’m back with a movie that was okay, and actually inspired a TV series. It’s School of Rock!

Plot Synopsis: No Vacancy, a rock band, performs at a nightclub three weeks before auditioning for the Battle of the Bands. Guitarist Dewey Finn creates on-stage antics, including a failed stage dive that abruptly ends the performance. The next morning, Dewey wakes in the apartment he lives in with Ned Schneebly and his girlfriend, Patty Di Marco. They inform him he must make up for his share of the rent or move out. When Dewey meets No Vacancy at a rehearsal session, he finds out that he has been replaced by another guitarist named Spider. Later, while attempting to sell some of his equipment for rent money, Dewey answers a phone call from Rosalie Mullins, the principal of the Horace Green prep school, inquiring for Ned about a short-term position as a substitute teacher. Desperate for money, Dewey impersonates Ned and is hired.

Plot: The plot is okay, but not super deep or amazing. It’s fun though and was a good film to watch for those younger.

Casting: The entire is cast is pretty awesome, with Jack Black portraying Dewey Finn. Dewey is the star of the show though and much of the film revolves around him a bit too much.

Cinematography: There is no amazing special effects along the lines of a Fantasy or Sci-Fi movie, but it’s not terribly shot either. Adequate would be the term I’d use to describe it in one word.

Music: Obviously being a major theme of the movie, the Music was pretty awesome. It’s got it’s own goofy spin on it, but it’s pretty good.

Overall: A fun movie, but not a must watch.

For those who like: Comedy, Jack Black, Music, Teaching, Redemption Stories?

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

Anime Sunday: New Life+ Controversy

This week for Anime Sunday I’m not covering a new series. It’s all about the New Life+ Controversy!

Huh?: So for those unaware there was in the past month a huge controversy that exploded regarding a Light Novel series that was getting an Anime adaptation. Than someone found some pretty inflammatory Twitter posts by the author and everything went pear shaped. First the Voice Actors quit the Anime adaptation, than the Anime itself got cancelled. Following that the original publisher pulled the series from Print and the US Publisher did the same.

Seriously?: Yeah, it really happened and personally I find it a shame that it happened and now a bunch of people are out of jobs after putting in work on it.

But they were really insensitive remarks, and so was the main character in the book!: Well I will agree that the Author was an asshole, and probably still is one, but I will dispute the fact that the main character was racist.

First the main character doesn’t have any memories, only knowledge of his past life. The fact that he killed thousands of people as part of a war is something he’s completely unaware of from the first 60 or so pages of the first volume of the Light Novel that I’ve read. The fact he did that is slightly unbelievable, but then again it’s a war, people die; get over it. The fact that some American people got upset at that and call foul when America has a sitting president with known racist Tweets, Multiple Sexual Assault Allegations and tons of other sleazy shit is a bunch of bull to me. Personally I am fully aware of how nationalistic Chinese citizens can be, it’s featured prominently in much of their own literature and authors make similar remarks all the freaking time. Some of the authors of series that have even gotten true Anime have also made rather insensitive remarks on the Chinese equivalents of Twitter. So this occurring is a bit confusing to me   I’m fully aware of how much bad blood there is between Korea, China and Japan, but people losing their jobs over remarks made by another person years in the past is a bit much to me. If you’re going to be upset, than be upset BEFORE people start working on something.

That’s it for this week’s Anime Sunday.

Serial Saturday: Arcane Emperor Chapters 19-26 by Aternus

This week for Serial Saturday I’m covering the third set of chapters in Rainer’s adventures. It’s Arcane Emperor Chapters 19-26 by Aternus!

Plot Synopsis: Having been sent to the Fallen City, and World, of Nalmar Rainer, Luna and Kara have encountered numerous Undead. However after severing the control between one Lich and a Death Knight they encountered a new ally, Gunthar a fallen Paladin of Nalmar. He now journeys with them to destroy the Arch-Lich that destroyed his home and stole his father from him…

Plot: This is a pretty awesome set of chapters, and it really highlights how overpowered Rainer’s class is. Not that he doesn’t have to sweat and bleed for his advancements, but the price is incredibly minimal for him compared to others. I enjoy that the author balances his overpoweredness with the fact that he actually has to work his ass off for it, often killing himself thousands of times per minute during his Sleep Learning.

Characters: Gunthar’s addition to the party was very welcome as it brought a needed sense of normalcy, sort of, to the group. Really the entire party are pretty amazing characters with flaws, although some aren’t explored quite yet this early into the story.

Overall: An excellent and action packed set of chapters. If you aren’t reading this series yet, you ought to be.

Retro Game Friday: Syphon Filter

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m back with a cult classic. It’s Syphon Filter!

Plot Synopsis: In the year 1999, Gabriel Logan and his partner Lian Xing investigate a series of biological outbreaks triggered by international terrorist Erich Rhoemer. When fellow agent Ellis loses contact during a mission in Costa Rica, the top-secret Agency dispatches Gabe and Lian to find him. They discover Ellis is dead, and Rhoemer’s suspected drug operation is a cover for the viral operation. Another outbreak in Nepal leads to more questions when an infected person who should have died somehow survived…

Plot: The plot is pretty great, honestly I didn’t remember much of the plot before writing this article though given how long it’s been since I played this game. If it weren’t for some recent rumors of a new entry in the series or remake I might never have remembered this game.

Characters: Gabe is a pretty decent main character, but he wasn’t as memorable as Snake from Metal Gear Solid which was a game that really overshadowed this game. The rest of the cast also suffers from that problem.

Gameplay: The gameplay however was pretty good, if you could get over the frame rate loss that occurred occasionally. It featured stealth and combat sections, much like Metal Gear Solid. However the AI was probably the best part of this game, it was very good for it’s time and allowed for much more replay value.

Art: The art has aged poorly, additionally while the textures of the game were good, the actual animation suffered from some frame rate issues.

Music: I don’t remember a whit of it, sorry.

Overall: This is a game that probably deserves a remake, given how much of a cult following the game has. If that occurs I’d say wait for that, since the art has aged poorly.

For those who like: Stealth Games, Great AI (for the time), Interesting Gameplay.

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

TNT: The Bears Bear a Bare Kuma Chapters 75-103 by Kumanano

This week for Translation Necessary Thursday I’m back with the fourth set of chapters in Yuna’s journey to do as she pleases. It’s The Bears Bear a Bare Kuma Chapters 75-103 by Kumanano.

Plot Synopsis: Having traveled to the royal capital and back Yuna is now ready to buy a shop in Crimonia. Will she be able to bear the weight of responsiblity?

Plot: I’m sorry for that pun, I just had to do it. It was unbearable to ignore such a perfect opportunity. Oh I did it again? Absolute coincidence I say! Now to get to this set of chapters, it’s a fun set. It covers Yuna and her quest to do as she pleases in some pretty awesome new ways. There is one particular scene where the bloody bear shines.

Characters: We get quite a few new characters, but honestly my favorite is the guild master in Mireera. Still the star of the show is Yuna.

Overall: A fun arc. Nothing absolutely spectacular or intense plot wise, but that has never been the appeal of this series.