K (anime)

Jun. 6th, 2014 11:16 am
silverthunder: (Sokka - Stop looking at me!)
I recently watched the anime series K. Originally this was going to be one of my workout anime, but I ended up just marathoning episodes. It was actually pretty good, and I ended up liking the main character more as it went along (he was kind of meh at first), although he got overshadowed by more interesting side characters IMO. Thirteen episodes was definitely not enough time to properly develop all of them, but I still found them likable, so good enough, I suppose. The various novel and manga prequels probably flesh some of them out more.

Speaking of manga, I went and read Memories of Red, because I like the Homra characters a lot, and goddamnit, now I totally ship Fushimi x Yata. Why is their angst so delicious? Fushimi acts like kind of a creepy psycho whenever he and Yata meet up in the anime, but in Memories of Red there was so much internal conflict. Those two just can't understand each other - it's almost painful to watch.

Also, I apparently decided to start watching this series at a really good time, because the Days of Blue manga is still ongoing, there's a manga adaption coming out for the Lost Small World novel (Fushimi x Yata backstory - more angst!), and the sequel movie, K: Missing Kings, is out in a month.

Here's hoping it all gets translated.
silverthunder: (Avatar - OMGHUGS)
It's funny, I can normally write a LOT without trying when I see a bunch of flaws in a series, but when it comes to the ones I really like, I usually have to actually think to find things to say (y'know, other than "this was really damn good, and everyone should watch it").

I just finished watching Nagi no Asukara, which was a really lovely series. I mean that literally, too - the art is beautiful, the scenery and colors and animation... my eyes were happy, let's just say.

The story was pretty engaging too, if you don't mind the endless series of crushes and complications that come with these kinds of pre-teen "growing pains" shows. I thought it handled itself well there, for all that you may have seen something similar somewhere else. The addition of the ocean city and the land city and their conflict and everything tying into a plot about change, feelings you can't control, and acceptance made things interesting.

Spoilery comments under cut )

All around, a very good series, and I recommend giving it a try.

Convenient video with all op/ed (note: spoilers in the second op/ed): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J9uMeTPWwVY
silverthunder: (Avatar - Group Hug)
Random update, and I'll get the dull stuff out of the way first.

My sister emailed and apologized to me for the things she said. I'll be honest, I'd already forgiven her. I love my family a lot, even if I don't feel like I fit in well. I was thinking about emailing her, but I didn't know what to say. I didn't feel like I owed her an apology, so it felt like I'd be fishing for one from her. So I decided to wait and see what happened, and apparently that was the right way to do it. Anyway, the time between when she sent the original emails and when she sent the apology was about a month. It's the longest fight I have had with one of my sisters, but I don't feel like it created a gap between us. I'm known for holding grudges, but this time I wasn't really angry - mostly just sad. I was really happy to hear from her.

Cody and I started watching a series called To Aru Majutsu no Index (A Certain Magical Index), which is pretty decent at six episodes in. The world and setting are interesting and I found the storyline compelling. The main character is sympathetic enough that I want to continue watching to see what happens with him, although some of the secondary characters don't have me convinced yet. I've noticed a couple of issues with pacing and exposition, but that's mostly due to the sheer volume of knowledge you need to take in about this world and the powers and curious things going on. Most of the episodes I've watched have managed this without too much awkwardness, with one very, very glaring exception.

Spoilers for episode four, in case anyone was planning on watching )

Anyway, aside from that episode, the series has been pretty okay. I'm enjoying it, anyway, and I'm kind of excited about the fact that it's got a lot of episodes (and I've heard that the side story to this one, which is also two seasons long, is actually better). Here's hoping we don't see any more awkward episodes like that one, though.

As usual, here are the opening and ending videos for the first half of season one if anyone's curious about this series:

OP: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQIzb72IATU
ED: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=choP8rCAJZY
silverthunder: (Sokka - Stop looking at me!)
I keep forgetting to post here. Bleh. I'm mostly only active on tumblr now (http://brynne-lagaao.tumblr.com), and that's because it's way easier than putting together actual thoughts and making a journal post. I can just reblog pictures and videos and other people's commentary. It's so addicting.

Recently got into a fight with my sister, who said quite a few hurtful things. Some of them may have been true. I don't fit in with my family well - they're all into sports and other things that non-geeks enjoy, and they all socialize quite easily. I'm awkward and don't like large groups and find sports dull and really only like anime and gaming and books. As a result, they do many things together that I have no interest in joining them for, such as large gatherings with people I don't know and sporting events and other such things. They make trips out to Calgary over weekends to visit family when I know that I need to hole up and have down time away from people. I find being around groups of others mentally draining, even when it's with those closest to me, and I spend a lot of time alone or just with Cody.

I suppose she's right to say that's selfish of me, because in the end, it IS about what I want. I don't have a lot of energy any more, and I'm selfish. I want to spend that energy on me, and the things that make me happy. I suppose I will regret this one day, when I'm old and alone and have nothing left, but right now I can't see that far into the future. And right now I'm tired.

Anyway, the argument was over a trip to Hawaii for my Dad's 70th birthday. Two of my sisters want to surprise him and my mom with a family trip. The idea was that we would cover Mom and Dad's costs as well as our own. Cody wasn't keen on going to Hawaii, so we decided to pass (but still chip in for my parents' trip). This pissed my sister off, and hence the fight.

It was kind of a one-sided fight, to be honest - I just let her say what she wanted. Through emails. At work, too. I cried. It was pretty humiliating.

Haven't talked to her, or my other sisters, since.

With that mildly depressing shit out of the way, I'll say that I'm back reading fanfic like crazy again, and possibly even attempting to write some. I'm also trying to work on some original stuff, but inspiration is pretty sparse. In any case, the reading of fanfic is happening. A lot. I mean, there's a lot to read, it's awesome. This fandom is right at its peak right now, so... yeah. I mean, fuck yeah.

The fandom is Shingeki no Kyoujin (Attack on Titan) and I'm reading Marco/Jean stuff. Anyone who's seen the series past episode thirteen will understand what I mean when I say that I cry myself to sleep over these two. Luckily, there are many wonderful fanfic writers to ease the pain.

I'm also playing Rune Factory 4, which is moderately addicting as well. I think I'm just about finished the first arc of the story. We'll see how it goes.
silverthunder: (Ken - Um... sure...)
So Cody and I finished watching Sword Art Online last night. It was a good series! The theme of gaming and MMOs doesn't hurt it any, in my opinion! Both of us wanted to play after we finished - luckily, the beta for FFXIV was up, so we logged in to explore around for a bit.

As I've seen everyone say, the first half was noticeably better than the second half. However, for the most part, I still enjoyed the second half. With one very notable exception.

This is going to be a 'duh' for anyone who knows me and has seen Sword Art Online, but yeah: Asuna's treatment in the second half of the series.

I mean, we get this decently strong female character, who - while not being groundbreaking or anything - can hold her own in a fight and whose skills the main character - who is the epitome of the l33t gamer - respects. And she refuses to bow out of a fight because she wants to protect him as much as he wants to protect her. Better yet, she has the skill to do it!

And so, clearly, the best thing to do with this character is to make her essentially a princess in a tower waiting to be rescued for the whole second half of the series.

Such a disappointment.

And I will also say, outside of a spoiler cut, that the second half of this series would benefit from a trigger warning for the sexual harassment in it. Those scenes made me uncomfortable. The ending battle was the worst, but those "scientist" things? WTF, seriously? None of it was even necessary! The villain's "experiments" should have been enough to want to take him down. It seemed like a lame excuse to put fanservice of Asuna out there in various compromising positions - and, of course, to fuel Kirito's angst and rage in that last battle. Terribly, terribly degrading.

Spoilery stuff under here )

For all these complaints (and I know they're pretty serious ones), I still enjoyed Sword Art Online. It was a fun series that still managed to take itself seriously and tug at the heart strings here and there. The art was pretty, the theme of the series and how it carried off that plot was actually pretty good, and it made me want to game more. Haha!

Now let's get a series like this with better overall character development and a more active, strong female protagonist!

For those interested, the opening/closing videos for the first half of SAO:

OP: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xA-ZdNkRBGA
ED: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w36jj0F-6pc


Jun. 8th, 2013 01:09 pm
silverthunder: (Ty Lee - :))
Yup, I went and got a tumblr account, since a RL friend and my husband have one and why-the-hell-not-I'm-a-sheep.

If any of my friends in journal-land have a tumblr as well, let me know and I'll follow you.
silverthunder: (Sokka - Stop looking at me!)
I posted a new chapter of Game Over on FictionPress. It will be up on my website shortly.

Funny thing with this chapter... I got a surge of inspiration in May, and spent several days working on the second half of it (the first half had been done a while back). Then I spent several days editing it. And then I decided to leave it for a few days and come back to it...

The Vegas trip came up, and then some other stuff, and then Fire Emblem... yeah. This sat for a while.

But as a result, I got to come at it somewhat cold, and so I had a better notion of how everything flowed together as a chapter. I managed to find a few more problem areas that I hadn't noticed before. So now it's up, and I can focus on the next chapter.

Hopefully those who are still interested enjoy this one! Let me know if you have any comments or suggestions for improvement.


Jun. 4th, 2013 07:14 am
silverthunder: (Bell - Um... WTF?)
Okay, seriously, Digimon fandom? This shit still matters? Really?

Besides, we all know that the true OTP of Adventure was Taichi/Yamato. The epilogue and any discussion around het pairings are all part of an elaborate cover-up, because the creators had to hide their true preference. And god knows we need the creators to state their intentions in order to validate our ships! Amirite?

In random other news, I'm thinking of maybe getting a tumblr. Anyone else active over there?
silverthunder: (Avatar - OMGHUGS)
I have to say that this right here is pretty awesome. Overly sexualized female armor makes me twitchy. It was one of my biggest pet peeves with Tera, although there were a lot of other reasons we stopped playing that game.

Work sucked so hard this week that I randomly had breakdowns into tears multiple times. I won't get into it. I hate that place with a passion but I need the money and given our city, I'd have to move to get comparable pay. That's not a viable option right now, so meh.

But! I've been spending my spare time either watching anime with Cody or playing Fire Emblem, and that has saved my sanity and kept me enjoying life in general.

Right now we're watching a series called Shingeki no Kyoujin, which is pretty intense! There are eight episodes out so far. When we started watching, we had seven downloaded. The idea was to watch one or two. Um, yeah. Seven episodes later, we were hunting for the eighth. The ninth should be out some time after today (since it airs on Saturdays in Japan).

Another series we're watching is called Hataraku Maou-sama!, and was recommended by [personal profile] insaneneko. This one we're taking a bit slower, but it's very cute and funny. We also enjoyed the first episode of Suisei no Gargantia (also recommended by insaneneko), but haven't watched further yet (once we run out of Hataraku Maou-sama!, I expect we'll start on those episodes).

So, Fire Emblem.

I'm on chapter 14, and would probably be farther but I've been grinding like made because I AM ADDICTED TO THE SUPPORT CONVERSATIONS OMG. I want to see them all! I took advise from some folks and grinded all of Chrom's early so that I could watch the confessions and then reset, because I heard that you don't get to choose when he gets married (it just happens at a certain point in the story). Then I grinded a lot of my tactician's (left some out since I wanted to continue and get more characters - I'll get them on a different play-through, maybe) because I wanted her to marry Chrom. I almost gave that up when I saw Gaius confess, though! That guy is awesome! Maybe on another play-through...

I think that now I have all of the characters who can marry each other and have kids, though, because there's only a couple who have any blank spots in their support lists, and they're the ones who don't have supports with anyone else. So, grind ahoy and get those conversations! Then I'll marry the ones I like and move on. Hehe.

Spoilery stuff )

All in all, this is probably one of the best single-player games I've ever played, and I'm anticipating many hours of fun with it. There's just so much you can do!
silverthunder: (Orphen - Stop the world)
A very good article to read for anyone who might ever consider a vanity press in future to publish your writing (or if you know someone who might consider this option):

Don't pay someone a pile of money ($5000!) to publish your work. You probably won't get enough of it back to make it worthwhile. It sounds like most people would probably have a better readership on the Internet for free. Sure, the readers don't pay you to read your work, but at least you don't have to pay someone to get your writing out there. FictionPress and Archive of Our Own can still get you some readers if you're worried about rejection. It's a better place to start than a vanity press, for sure.

Fire Emblem

May. 4th, 2013 02:10 pm
silverthunder: (Killua - Meow)
I've decided to buy Fire Emblem: Awakening for the 3DS! It looks super complex and might be a bit too much for me (I like a simple story with a manageable number of characters to keep track of - basically the opposite of this, haha), but Cody bought it and I tried it and it seems really fun, so... yup, gonna get it.

I know a couple of people on my FL have played it - if you happen to be reading this, any tips for a newb? (I'll be playing a female Avatar, of course!)
silverthunder: (Sokka - Stop looking at me!)
Cody and I have officially graduated to the level of "ridiculous gaming nerds".

Why, you ask? We bought high-tech gaming headsets to play MMOs, so our in-game sounds wouldn't interfere with each other. Because the headsets are so good, we can't hear each other when we talk. So... our solution is to call each other on Skype.

Yup, that's right. Sitting a foot away from each other, talking on Skype.

Gotta love it.

In other news, I am going to try and write today! For the past year or two (maybe longer) I've had this idea in my head that I want to write. I haven't started it, but I've got a rough draft of how it'll go and I keep jotting down little details here and there, tweaking a few things, making it better. I feel I have a fairly firm grasp of who the characters are, even, and the things they struggle with.

However! I have made myself a rule. I am NOT writing this story yet. My #1 goal right now is to finish Game Over, and then Piece of a Legend. I know what is going to happen in both of these, and I want Shane's and Aaren's stories finished. I still have those in my head right now, pounding around and wanting out. I just haven't had the motivation to work on them.

Excuses, excuses. I am lazy. Game Over has a grand total of three more chapters after the one I'm about halfway through right now. Piece of a Legend has two and a half. And I adore my characters - I want proper resolution for them. I can do this. Not in one afternoon, obviously, but it's still doable.

After they're done, then they both still need re-writes and edits, but that part can probably wait a while.

Oh, and in dieting news, Cody has been MUCH healthier and happier, so the new plan helped! We're more or less adjusted and continuing to follow standards on our own after the 20 days, so both of us are feeling confident and (bonus) losing weight! I'm twelve pounds down after a month of this, and continuing to lose. I don't even really crave salty foods or candy that much any more. So, yay!
silverthunder: (Ken - Um... sure...)
I was honestly a little disappointed with the first volume of the new ATLA comic, particularly the revelation at the end (it feels like it weakens some of Zuko's conflict from the series - if it turns out to be true, that is). And Azula's inclusion feels inconsequential and shallow somehow. She's definitely not as good a villain at this point, given her mental state.

To be frank, I found The Promise to be kind of mediocore as well. I'll continue buying the comics (out of curiosity, if nothing else), but I don't really expect much any more.
silverthunder: (Terran - Serious Business)
This is a post for two projects on Kickstarter that I just donated to, and which I thought I would pass along, in case more folks are interested and want to contribute.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1862188728/the-reward-tales-of-alethrion - I heard about this from [personal profile] maderr and would not have otherwise known, so I figure more exposure can only help! A really fun little animated short that they are trying to make into a series. I watched the short and thought it was great, so ended up donating.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1319761157/gtfo - A documentary on harassment of women in gaming. I've been interested in this topic for a while now, not because I've suffered any harassment myself (I've been lucky enough to game with some very awesome people), but because the problem is still very apparent (sites like 'Not in the Kitchen Anymore' and 'Fat, Ugly, or Slutty' provide proof of this) and yet there are so many people who are viciously adamant that it doesn't exist. Admitting there's a problem is the first step towards fixing it, right? More coverage really can't hurt.
silverthunder: (Killua - Meow)
I watched the last episode of Tales of the Abyss today - finally. I'd been holding out because Cody and I were watching it together and he wanted to finish the game first, but enough is enough. I wanted to see the rest. So I watched it.

For a game adaptation, it was pretty darn good! Not genius - it had pacing problems that were somewhat similar to the ones I noticed in Sword Art Online, and the character arcs were a touch on the shallow side - but still very enjoyable and engaging. The characters themselves were very likeable, despite Luke being a putz at the start (although the fact that he was such a flawed character might have actually made him more likeable), and the plot was interesting. The action scenes, although a little short sometimes, were exciting and had a nice look to them, and I appreciated the use of spell/action names. Because this is based on an RPG, after all!

Overall, I really had a fun time watching it and would recommend it to anyone looking for a decent sword-and-sorcery anime.

Cut for spoilers )

Off-topic: there's an open invitation to anyone familiar with the series to guess who my favorite character is. Just guess, you'll probably be right. I can be pretty predictable.

If you're interested in Tales of the Abyss, here is the OP video (incidentally, the same song used in the opening of the game, which is pretty cool). The OP is different for each episode because there's a little preview portion of the upcoming episode in it each time. I couldn't find the ED for some reason... too bad.

OP: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5UIJ4109uQ
silverthunder: (Sokka - Stop looking at me!)
I saw this on Facebook recent - a graphic with only the above question on it. 'Like' for yes, 'Comment' for no.

I'm too chickenshit to response directly to the friend who posted it (he's someone I work with who I do not know very well), so I will do so here.

Short answer: no. I cannot believe this question is even being asked any more. Not because I hate Christianity, or hate Christians. Religion is important to them, and I can respect that. However, this is a problematic request for a few reasons.

Canada is a multi-cultural country. This means that we have people of various races, with various beliefs, living as citizens here and raising their children. Many of them are not Christian, and will raise their children under a different religion (or under no religion). Having a Christian prayer in school will give those children the impression that 'this is the NORMAL religion and mine is weird or different'. Also, I am certain that the families in question consider their religion as important as Christians consider theirs. Privileging one over the other as if to say 'this one is BETTER' is not right (at the very least, we shouldn't put this attitude in the heads of impressionable children).

For the record, stating that 'well, it's OUR country, not theirs, they should adapt to our culture or GTFO' is so wrong that I don't even want to address it. However, even if it were true, the Christian religion is not a part of the Canadian culture.

I know that Christianity is the majority religion and that it's become sort of second nature for many Christians to normalize it as a part of (everyone's) every day life. But religion really isn't something that should be broadcast far and wide in everyone's faces as if we all were a part of it (or should be a part of it). The forced normalization of the Christian religion - it being in your face whether you like it or not, being pushed as something we all need to adopt - is the reason why there is why so many people have such a negative attitude towards the religion in general (well, that and the prejudices). It comes across as smugly self-righteous and rigidly controlling.

In reality, religion is a personal thing, and each person has the right to his/her own belief system. It's fine to be open about it, but to push it onto others as the 'normal' or 'right' thing is obnoxious.

So... yeah, no thanks. Keep it out of the public school system, okay?

Mirai Nikki

Feb. 5th, 2013 01:21 pm
silverthunder: (Ling - XD)
So my sister gave birth almost a week ago. I haven't been able to see the baby (she lives eight hours away from me, and I won't have time off until March), but I've seen plenty of pictures. My mom is still down there, helping my sister with the first few weeks (which I'm sure she's grateful for).

The baby's name is Calvin. I thought that was pretty awesome. He's going to be so sick of stuffed tigers after a few years, I'm sure.

I currently have a cold (all nice and settled in my chest, so I'm hacking up flem and feeling that sting whenever I breathe, which is lovely). I took today off work, but I'm already starting to bounce back, so hopefully I'll make it in tomorrow.

Anyway, I said in a previous post that I'd talk about Mirai Nikki, and here it is.

The oh-so-original premise of Mirai Nikki is battle royale - kill or be killed, until one survivor remains (who will be the winner). We have a weak hero who is terrified out of his mind (understandably), a lot of psychos who find the game fun, and the female protector, who is strangely unphased by the killing and the unpleasantness. And let's not forget her creepy stalkerish obsession with the main character that borderlines a mental illness of some sort, making their relationship all kinds of unhealthy and, at the best of times, co-dependent.

Spoilers be under here )

For those interested...

Mirai Nikki 1st OP: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okapFtXWcqI
Mirai Nikki 1st ED: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eiTdYWJHd6k


Jan. 29th, 2013 08:27 am
silverthunder: (Orphen - Stop the world)
Why do I read the FFXIV forums? Or any game's forums for that matter?

"If you're not playing the way I like to play, you are not a real gamer."

"If you don't agree with what I want to see in the game, you're obviously a complete retard who has no idea what makes a good game."

"If you can't master a boss fight in X amount of time, you are lame and not worth playing with, ever."

"If you say you're playing for fun, it's just to cover the fact that you suck."

"If your idea of difficulty differs from mine, you just want an easy button."

"Being amazingly awesome right off the bat is 100% necessary in order to have fun; otherwise, you're doing it wrong."

Paraphrased, of course.

VIDEO GAMES = SERIOUS BUSINESS. You are only having fun if you are l33t, goddamnit! Now don't suck, or else!
silverthunder: (Sokka - Stop looking at me!)
So, Cody and I started watching Mirai Nikki, and basically put all other anime on hold while powering through that one.

Why? Same reason as the person who posted this video, pretty much.

Up until much later in the series, Yuno is by far the most interesting character in the whole thing. Not in a good way. In an omg-train-wreck-can't-stop-watching way.

Series contains many levels of psycho-ness and disturbing shit, including blood, gore, strongly implied rape, mass murder, and so much creepy stalker behaviour that it can't even be measured. Also, occasional moments of cutesy stuff? I... I don't understand, but this show does it. It's like "tee hee, they're on a date" and then "decaying bodies OMG!!!"

... I can't believe I like this shit, but holy fuck, it's good somehow.

In other news, snow is horrible and should be abolished. I've cleared my driveway twice already today and it's still going. I'm also making cookies, and tomorrow I'll be baking the usual cake for dessert on Monday. I have a week and a half off of work, thank god. That place is evil.

Looking forward to Christmas with the family!

June 2014

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