Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Pokemon Y Journey #1

Oh Frabjous Day Kalou Kalay... I'm not sure how that goes...

  But anyway, I finally got my hands on a copy of Pokemon Y for my 3ds. So Merry Christmas to me :) 

(I will catch you soon too. Y shaped bird thingy)

  I've been playing this game for roughly 25 hours already this past week or more... who knows... Holy balls it's almost 2016 already... 

  Suffice to say... I'm loving this game so far. So I started with Chespin cuz I always seem to choose the fire type a lot when I play Pokemon and wanted to give the grass type a fair shake. Also Chespin is cute as balls...

(Look at it... It's so cuuuuute.)

  I still like him as Quiladin but I was kinda turned off with Chesnaught... The whole large head and big eyes thing was working then they shrunk it... :(

  I didn't know until later I could have another pick of starters from generation 1 so I picked my all time fave: Charmander cuz Charizard is pretty cool. 
(And Mega Charizard Y is just soooo badass...)
  I find myself going back and forth a lot from Pokemon centers simply cuz I didn't realize how much I would spend catching more and more pokemon. I have around 110 by now and it's nowhere even close to done. or even half. Just so many... and the masochist in me wants to train them all.

(I wanna be the very best.... Oh dear Arceus have mercy on me)
 I think I'm doing the wrong thing here... Maybe I should be catching them all later on... since all that grinding trying to catch all the pokemon in an area has left me with a slight problem... I'm too over leveled for the gym fights.

  The gym leaders are not so intimidating when I get to them. I was hoping for an epic fight when I went up against Viola, Grant, Korrina and Ramos but after catching at least a dozen new pokemon in between each of them... I found them all underwhelming. 

  I think I can battle them again in the Battle Chateau so I'm hoping they'd have a beefier team by then. I mean none of em had more than 3 pokemon and as for most Gym leaders all share a certain weakness.

  I hope the folks at the Pokemon Company adopt a new strategy when it comes to gyms. Pokemon is full of variety so I think gym leaders can have an awesome theme but doesn't have to revolve around a certain type. I liked the gym designs for Pokemon Y. A spider web is pretty cool as well as a rock climbing wall, a skate park and a giant tree you can swing around in. 3 pokemon for the early gym leaders is fine but a twist and or a challenge would be pretty awesome.

(Might do a review on each of these gym leaders cuz I kinda like them as characters...)

  The new features for interacting with your pokemon is also a great plus. I never had the patience to EV train my pokemon so Super Training gives stat boosts a more open experience as well as the Pokemon amie for building bonds with your pokemon...

That's all I have to say for now... cuz I want to get back playing some more... Til Later!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Pokemon Fever: Pokemon Y

It's a valid medical situation...

  I'm taking a break from reviewing comic books right now. After all: "One passion does not a geek make". Cartoons have been spread all over different mediums that it's more or less part of everyday life. And I like to think that this is what I'm standing for. It's one of the greatest manifestations of human imagination. Humans have been drawing cartoons to depict wildlife since we were living inside stone caves...

 And speaking of drawing wildlife (BEST SEGWAY EVAAAH!), I want to talk about another love of my life, Pokemon! Well maybe cartoon monsters in general but let's focus on Pokemon for now. I remember first laying eyes on Pokemon when I was in the 4th grade and I was 11 and watching my first episode on local TV. I was instantly hooked. Also there's that theme song... which is kinda cheesy now that i think about it but as an 11 yr old, I had no chance... I wanna be the very best... like no one ever was.... *Snap* oh wait I'm doing a review.

(I'm pretty sure there's a pokemon using hypnosis when the theme is playing.)

 I'm gonna jump ahead a bit and start talking about what I've learned about the 6th generation of pokemon games: Pokemon X and Y. I just got a Nintendo 3DS this month... (Finally!) and I've been itching to play these 3DS titles. The first games I got were Smash Bros. for 3DS and Xenoblade Chronicles 3D which were pretty awesome games but I found myself with a bigger nagging feeling. I was coming down with a bad case of Gowta Kacheemal. 

 This has happened before on my old busted Nintendo DS. I wanted to play remake of the first Pokemon game I ever finished: Pokemon Silver and I so wanted to try Soul Silver. Short version: It did not disappoint. I was sucked in so much that my lovely girlfriend kept trying to grab my DS away from me. Now that I have a 3DS the symptoms are back.

(I feel itchy... Do you feel itchy?... Why am I so itchy?)

 I haven't bought my copy of Pokemon Y yet. I chose Y because it seems to be getting a slightly higher score than Pokemon X. Also I'm drawn to Yveltal more than Xerneas cuz he reminds me of a Hydralisk and how mediocre I am in Starcraft. I couldn't get enough of the review videos and articles about it. There's so much to do and I'm a big fan of the grind if it's fun.

 Speaking of new stuff to do... You can now customize your trainer which was a long time coming to be honest. I'm not sure as to what extent you can customize your trainer but I'm glad they've added it. 

(Finally I can be black now.)

Also the 3D visuals of the game gives joy to my cartoon heart. It looks so pretty and I'm practically drooling over it.

(Aww man... Now my keyboard is wet.)

And not to mention: MEGA EVOLUTIONS!!!!

(Aaaand so are my pants...)

 So easy to say I'm pretty excited... Frickin check is gonna take till the next week to clear YARAARARARGH! Hopefully I can post my journey here on my blog for everyone's viewing pleasure :) I'm not that good at competitive play but there's more to it than that I hope. 

 I'll also give my out of ten score once I've tried it some more :D Til then... I'll be here... rocking back and forth on the floor until I can get my hands on Pokemon Y.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Comic Review Time: Invader Zim #1

Invader Zim is back to try and conquer Earth once more.

  Awwwww Damn... I love it! Invader Zim is revived from the purgatory of a TV series hiatus. Well he is brought back to us within the pages of a comic thanks to Oni Press and Jhonen Vasquez. On review this time: the "Invader Zim #1" comic book.

(You can already tell it's gonna be insane!)

  For those who don't know, I loved Invader Zim when I was younger. It embraced funny and insane in a oh so entertainment way. It was like watching an evil version of Spongebob Squarepants that was meant for a crazy audience.

  A clueless alien with an even more dim witted, but undeniably cute and funny, robot minion is sent to Earth to cripple it from within and prepare it for an alien invasion. In his way stands his, over paranoid and equally as inept, rival, Dib Membrane and his gamer addict sister Gaz. This is the main formula of the story but sprinkle in a generous dose of insane situations like Zim's burning reaction to rain, a virus that turns Zim and Dib into giant sausages or even Zim trying to collect human organs to pass his medical examination. This is what made the TV series so enjoyable. You never know what they're gonna pull out of their hat next. 

  Sadly, Nickelodeon cancelled the TV show and Zim fans around the world clamored to get him back. We finally got our wish when the comic book dropped from the sky and onto our comic book shelves. 

  The comic book featured the original creator of Invader Zim, Jhonen Vasquez, and writers from the original TV show. So it was pure Zim moments from the get-go. They look and speak like the way they're supposed to be. The story is just as crazy and ridiculous as it should be. They even add a nice tie in as to why the series was in a stand still for so long.

  For those who are new to Invader Zim, I think it would benefit you better if you were to watch some of the episodes. It does a fine job of not making it too confusing for new readers with the help of the "Recap Kid". However there are treats for long-time fans of the show such as Tak's Irken ship, Zim's Robot Parents and Gir launching a poodle into space (it wasn't from the show but he did launch a sandwich into Dib's face then too....). 

  The art is straight out of the TV show as well. The backgrounds are awesome to look at in their own simplistic but ridiculous designs. The random-ness of the universe itself works well in the comic the same way as Adventure Time's Land of Ooo as well.

  If there is one thing I do miss and unavoidably missing from the comics, it's the voice acting. Zim and most of the characters yell a lot of nonsense at each other a lot and not hearing the voices of Richard Horvitz (also the voice of Dagget from The Angry Beavers) and Rikki Simons leaves a hole in the heart for me. However since the voices were so hilarious and iconic you can just hear them in your head while reading their speech bubbles which isn't as hard as you think if you have heard them in the TV show. 

  All in all, I'm so glad to have this crazy thing back in my life and viewing pleasure. It's my hyperactive insane child candy and I've been itching for a fix in the longest time.

 So I give this comic the coveted "WHAT ARE YOU HIDING DOG MAN?! TELL ME! TELL MEEEE!!!" out of ten.

 On a side note, I love Invader Zim so much that it gave me inspiration to my own comic book series: "Point Break Mall". A mall cop in charge of keeping the peace in a crazy unpredictable mall.

 (Pez and Tik meet Scottie from Target Toys)

Monday, December 7, 2015

Comic Review Time: Sulsi

From Rags to Ragdolls

   It's time for another comic book review and I'm going for another local comic. Thankfully we have plenty to go around thanks to the boom in recent comic book conventions here in the Philippines. I kinda love that I get to ride along with the new wave of modern comics in this country.

  But anyway, the comic book I'm reviewing today is titled: Sulsi #1 (I keep mistaking it for Sulis, I don't know why) by Ronzkie Pacho-Vidal (Ikos Komiks)
Front cover of Sulsi #1

   I get the appeal of these kind of comics. They look like they're made for kids and give adults a nostalgic feeling. The simplicity of the characters with the nice work of the details make it all the more enjoyable.

  The characters seem to be living rag-dolls with each their own personalities and costumes. Asul wears what appears to be a straw hat, Pula is wearing something of a Spartan soldier gear and Lila is wearing a dress and ribbons on her pigtails. There are also the 2 pets named Aw-haw (the dog) and Meow-Aw (the cat). The non-animal dolls have buttons for eyes.  They're nice to look at and I like how they seem to have their own personality and that they seem to be from some faraway land (since they come in falling from the sky.)

  The story is innocent enough with the band and their cat trying to rescue their dog. It doesn't really explain how they got to the point where they're falling from the sky trying to catch Aw-Haw. It's a typical RPG story where a band of heroes try to rescue their friend within a foreign land. Well at least I think it is since the environment of where they landed hasn't been established yet aside from the seemingly common household and Aw-Haw apparently being abducted by a full-sized pet dog. Maybe it's just the RPG player within me that wishes it to be so.

  Everything starts to get confusing once you start asking questions. It hasn't been established what they are or where they come from or how they survive falling from the sky and one of them losing an eye. So I think it's best to just keep moving on and hopefully the questions will be answered in the next issues. 

  Everything is nice and well enough. However I do have a personal pain point with this. The dialogue is sounds straight from a local telenovela with child actor stereotypes. I find that incredibly cheesy but that's a personal bias. The way they talk like prissy little goody-two-shows just irk me to the wildest sense. It makes them seem so one-dimesional.

  Again this is just for me, because I have an inate desire to squeeze child actors until they pop. Maybe others feel the same way so , yknow, you've been warned.

  Still it's a nice comic to give to your young ones. The art is nice and the story is sweet and simple. It shows promise and hopefully the story gets more interesting. As for me, I can't really stand the dialogue and my hopes of it being like Jeff Smith's "Bone" series seems a bit too far-fetched.

  So I'm gonna give this comic a "Pop a child star like a pimple out of ten!"

(This I can get onboard with)

On a side note, I might get into a review of the "Bone" comics later on. But for the short version: It's pretty great.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Superman x Batman: Dawn of Justice Trailer

Here's some thoughts I wanted to share about the new trailer:

Give this a watch then scroll down for my short review.

   I'm a little on the fence about this one. The opening scene was awesome, yes. Clark giving out that precise question to Bruce Wayne is just awkwardly hilarious. Then they lay the plot on there pretty quickly... "Who is actually doing any good? Batman or Superman?". 

   The comic book fans know this debate well. I think this is how Amanda Waller was born. "Who keeps the superheroes in check?" We've all seen the Batman try to keep a handle on all of the members of the Justice League just in case any of them we're to pose a threat to humanity. In many cases, the members actually welcome it. It's like the zombie dilemma. Kill yourself or turn into a monster. 

   Then out comes Jessie Eisenburg as Lex Luthor. This was one of the things that made me nervous about the casting choices. Amy Adams made me feel the same way when she came out as Lois Lane but thankfully she did an alright job of it. But Lex Luthor, probably the second most iconic DC villain (I'm a Joker fanboy...) has some big formidable shoes to fill and it's played by a fast-talking, soft-spoken actor. I dunno, He sounds like the Riddler, more than anything. I'm not gonna count him out just yet. Thanks to Heath Ledger, fans of the superhero movies know that the actors can surprise you. So I'm holding off my judgement till after I watch the whole thing.

  Then there's all the cutscenes that reminded me of the Man of Steel. Just so much destruction... I'm all for a super power beatdown but this was the knife's edge back in Man of Steel. There was just so much fighting and smashing and explosions. You didn't know when it would resolve. So I'm hoping they keep the fighting on point in this movie. Even with what appears to be Alfred talking in the background along with "the social Luthor" I think it was nice especially with the Boxing Fight Title card being announced.

  This is where it got me really worried. They decided to drop not one but two bombs into the mix. Number 1 would be Doomsday. Freakin' Doomsday! From what I can gather, I think Lex Luthor tried to reanimate or clone Zod from the past movie and out came the monstrocity. The design is pretty "meh"... Doomsday did look like a Micheal Bay Ninja Turtle... Hopefully (Oh please let them get this right) Doomsday will have his signature rock spikes when fighting ensues. 

   Number 2 is Princess Diana of Themyiscira, herself. That's right folks. It's frickin Wonder Woman. This better make sense in the movie. I think it's great that WW is finally getting the big screen treatment after all these years. Also Gal Gadot looks amazing as her. Here's hoping for a Wonder Woman title to be coming out soon. 

  Also for a trailer, I think it may have given away waaaay too much. How much would the comic fanboys and fangirls go insane if Doomsday was a surprise. I think we already had enough with the Batbot suit and Wonder Woman.

  Like I said, all in all, this trailer has me worried and on the fence. I want it to be great. Just so the trend continues of having superhero movies come out every year the same way new comic books come out every month. It's by far my favorite genre of action movies. I want to see them all get a film. Flash, Green Arrow, Aquaman, Green Lantern even down to Booster Gold or Elongated Man :)) So please don't screw this up, Warner Bros. 

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Comic Review Time: Pugad Baboy #27

Pugad Baboy means Pig's Nest :)

 I really love these annuals from the Pugad Baboy series. As a kid all the American graphic novels and Japanese manga were always out of my price range. The annual Pugad Baboys were always affordable being around P150 - P300 each. It was one of the few local comics I actually followed back then. So when my lovely girlfriend gave me the 27th of the series for my birthday I was ecstatic. 

(Not my actual comic book... was looking for the cover image in Google)

  For those who've never read a Pugad Baboy strip, the comic is about a village of clearly obese residents in the Philippines. It is written and drawn by Pol Medina Jr. Though that doesn't really drive the series necessarily. 

  I think the main driving force for this series are the characters. Each of the characters are funny in their own way and somehow represent a certain demographic in my country, the Philippines. Mang Dagul is the average man who works hard for his family who has a passion for cooking food as well as eating it albeit his usage of less than desirable ingredients. Sgt. Tomas Sabaybunot represents the workers for the military as well as the stereotypical womanizer/ abused husband. Bob Lamoun is the town bum/hippie/druggie with a heart of gold. Utoy, Paltik and Joma are the children of the past and today. Polgas is the philospher and superhero. Patrolman Durugas and Senator Cabalfin are indictments to the corruption of the government and police force. Mao Tang is the ridiculous stereotype of the Chinese salesman. Pao Tang is the voice for the LGBT. Igno Ramos is a mirror to the struggles of an ex-convict and the joys of drinking alcohol. Ka Noli is a nod to the communist parties. Colleen is the recent addition to represent the Atheist community which I like often clashing with Father Marty the laid back priest of the church. And of course... Ambrosia, the skinny house help of the Sungcal family who always brings on the fat jokes, bald jokes, poor jokes, drunk jokes and other assorted jokes.

  As for the 27th serial, I found it a bit odd since it's different from the previous books. I don't remember when it started but instead of the usual of having the chapters with strips revolving around a central topic it now features a single joke with multiple punchlines per chapter. I'm not a fan of that. It can be funny sure. But repeating a set up makes reading the repeated panels more of a chore than anything. The comedy of these books were always varied and awesome. They rarely talk down to the readers or dumb it down. So though I enjoy the jokes and punchlines the format is not very good for me. The revolving themes, the different set ups, the political satire, the tiring but truthful commentary on local culture Bring it back Medina - sensei.

  The biggest thing I always look forward to in these books are the short spin-offs of the characters. I always thought these deserved their own graphic novels with my favorite ones being: Bardagul Kapote: Private Investigator, Babman : The Pork Knight, Benigno Ramos: Bodyguard for Hire, 2078, Obesa Vanedossa and Maidnappers. The one for the  27th left me with a huge "Meh." It's about Devlino, the main antagonist in the story: "Ang Hiwaga ng Duenas", seeking revenge on the Pugad Baboy crew for the downfall of his "invasion" with the "aswangs". I do love Devlino's character being a gay stereotype for the devil. I think he's one of the more mystical villains that universe. He's also a likable villain. However in this iteration he seems ineffective at best. He kept failing at his plan and multiple back up plans which makes it seem all the more rushed and incomplete. I also like that Colleen the atheist had a driving role since her disbelief of the devil makes her immune to his magic.  

  The art is always great. The black and white make it simple and easy to consume and the covers are always nice to look and laugh at. The poses and framing are quite dynamic for the action sequences but again all the repetition of frames make it more a chore to read it again and again. 

 All in all, it's not as good as the previous ones. PB5 still being my all time favorite because it had 2 features in 1 book. It's still a good read though short if you don't bother reading the same frames. The feature doesn't rock as much as the past ones either. But for what it's worth, I'm gonna give this book an:

 "Atheist beats Devil is kinda cool" out of ten.