|From now on, future entries of this journal will be put on private. Sorry and thank you for your understanding.|
LiveJournal for Mirage.
|Friday, September 27th, 2013|
|From now on, future entries of this journal will be put on private. Sorry and thank you for your understanding.|
|Friday, September 21st, 2012|
From the same creator of Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro. Despite being very different, it has almost everything that Neuro has, from the unique premise, to overpowered main character with a thousands trick, a sidekick and a veteran.
Let's just say this, if you are looking for a unique experience, look no further. AC has possibly the most unique premise I have heard in the recent years. You got an entire class that needs to kill their teacher who happened to be an alien, who looks like a squid, who travels in the speed of light, who will blow the earth if you don't kill him. Can't get any weirder than that XD;;;
While I praise the manga originality, it has pretty much every problem I have with Neuro. For one, the main character, Koro Sensei is very much Neuro in a sense. They are...well...too overpowered. Both heavily relied on gimmicks (aka be as ridiculous as possible, Gintama style joke that gets old very quickly once you passed the line of anything is possible). Now don't get me wrong. It can be good if it's done well. The problem is, it kills any kind of suspense in the story. The manga quickly reduced to episodic slice of life with students trying to assassinate the teacher and fails. (Why, of course, lol)
I have to commend the manga though, despite being episodic, it's still able to maintain its freshness. I'm just worried...since I feel it's going nowhere. It's really one of those manga where its final objective (killing the teacher) isn't so enticing that you want to read until the end. I definitely have a lot of interest in Koro Sensei past than anything else in the manga, but let me guess...just like Neuro, it's gonna take a bizillion years to reach that part. And to be honest, I donno if AC has the capability of keeping me entertained until then.
Current Rating (Up to chapter 12): A- (Very original and fresh, has plenty potential to succeed or fail horribly depending on how the author is going to write this. For now I'll stay positive and hope it will turn out better than Neuro.)
|Monday, July 23rd, 2012|
Long title is long, so let's go with KSKM instead.
For those who are wondering, the title means Karate little Prince/Boy Kohinata Minoru.
I got recommended by Roxie about this karate manga. I was talking about how I think realistic martial arts aren't as interesting as fantasy. I was half right and wrong. Whatever it is, KSKM is a shonen through and through. I haven't read such a straightforward shonen in a long time.
First thing first, this manga is more of a sport manga than a fighting manga. While there are many actions, they are mostly limited to competitions. There are occasional fight to death scenario, but those are rare. This is the story of Kohinata Minoru and his rise from someone who got bullied to a strong fighter. (Something like Hajime no Ippo) I'm hoping Minoru would be the strongest, but let's just say 40 volumes in, Minoru isn't even in top 10 yet lmao. In that sense, the pacing of this manga is more on the slow side, but at the same time, you can argue that it's realistic. Minoru doesn't suddenly become strong in 1 day.
Speaking of realism, I have heard that the portrayal of the martial arts is close to reality. Since I know nothing about karate, I'll just take other people words for it. As for realism on other things... I'm just going to say, don't expect it. This manga may look like seinen, but it is actually more like shonen. You have a healthy dose of idealism. The majority of the characters are 2 dimensional, and you don't really get much character development aside from characters getting stronger. So if you are looking for depth and sophisticated view of martial art...this is not the manga for you. If you are looking for pure mindless fun, then yes, this manga is awesome.
Despite the lack of depth whatsoever, the characters are still very fun to watch. You will end up cheering on Minoru as he becomes stronger. You can feel the impact of Mutou's powers. You will laugh over Minami's ridiculous antic. Or feel the terror of Pedro...
Speaking of Pedro...I feel like having a mini rant about this character. He is funny, that's for sure, and I don't mind that him as a comic relief character. BUT he raped a bunch of men and...nothing happen to this guy??? Not only that, he still want to rape more boys!!! I know I am supposed to laugh at how ridiculous it is, but man...it's rape. It's not supposed to be funny... In any case, this is one of the few very unrealistic parts of KSKM.
Now back to my original argument about whether realistic martial arts can be as fun as fantasy. KSKM action is good overall. Not the best I have seen, but I'm quite entertained. It also goes through several different types of martial arts, some with weapons, some without, so it doesn't get stale easily. As for the reason why I am also hesitated to say it's as fun as fantasy... probably because of how realistic the portrayal can be. The broken bones, the destroyed face, the violence in this manga is off the chart. I can't read the manga with straight face. Orz It's like I have to watch Minoru getting brutally destroyed before he can land a hit on his opponent...
By the way, I really like this manga art style. It's clean, easy to understand, and nice to look at.
Current Rating: A- (Highly recommended for people who enjoy sport and martial arts. Be careful though, you had to have strong tolerance of violence and...dirty jokes. This manga also covers a lot of Thai Boxing, and a tiny bit of romance. If you are looking for something with more fantasy, I'd recommend Tekken Chinmi instead. If you like something with more substance, I'd recommend Kenji instead.)
|Tuesday, July 10th, 2012|
How much is the chance of me picking two random manga and got almost the same reaction from both? Well, well, well, maybe it's just my luck? *swt
Like Chronos - Deep, this one is made by a female mangaka. It's also very beautifully drawn. It also sports an interesting premise. It's also cliche as hell. It's also boring as hell. But unlike Chronos - Deep, Ayakashi Hisen also made me cringe LMAO.
So my bias for female mangaka continues... This one rather than fujoshi, it's more to Otome Games. The manga is packed with these sentences:
"I love you"
"I'll protect you"
"I'm born to protect you"
Complete with pushing you to the wall and give you glimmering stare of how bishie I am. All of these in the span of 8 chapters. STOP! PLEASE STOP!. *rips hair apart* Orz
If anything, this is the shining example of why I am a sworn hater of Otome Games.
Speaking of which, this is also a shining example of how not to make a heroine. This is the type of heroine I despised the most. Oh, I am so strong. I kick boys. I hate boys. Bishonen appears, I change my mind. I am weak now so protect me. Believe me if I say 90% Otome Games heroine is like this. WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO TELL US, JAPAN?
Current Rating: (Up to chapter 8) C+ (Only recommended if you are die hard otome games fan. As for me, I will not touch it ever again.)
|Saturday, July 7th, 2012|
Being a huge fan of Chrono Trigger and Chrono Cross, anything with Chrono in the title usually gets into my good book almost instantly. I got into Chrono Crusade for same reason, but that's a different story. Today I am reviewing this rather new manga, Chronos - Deep.
The first thing that strikes me is the art and presentation. I immediately have a hunch that this is made by a female mangaka, and I hate it when I am correct. Consider me bias, but I hate hate hate shonen manga written by female. Why? Well, because it's usually very fujoshi lmao. There are some exceptions to that (Kekkaishi came to mind), but those are rare.
But anyway, Chronos Deep is not that fujoshi...(at least as far as I have read). The problem is...something else. It's possibly can win the most cliche award of the year. Now, it's not like I am against cliche. Hell, I enjoy many generic manga. (Nisekoi is so cliche, but I enjoy that at the moment.) The problem is Chronos Deep doesn't even try to be entertaining.
The premise is simple enough. You got hero having special shadow, and an organization recruits people with these shadow. And of course the hero shadow is even more special than other people shadow, and can even save other people being possessed by shadow. On paper, I actually like it. I love manga with special hero and special power. Darker than Black, anyone? But what makes Chronos Deep fails so much is that the characters are 1 dimensional cliche cookie cutter -insert generic term here-.
*sigh It's one thing to make the plot so predictable. It's another thing to make the characters taken from generic 101 book. The hero is a pussy. He cries every 5 seconds. I wish he grows some spine but never mind about that. The heroine is useless and has no other feature other than being eye candy. The best friend is well, useless too. He's there for some angst moment. By the 8th chapters, I am face palming so hard. This is to be honest...the most dull manga I have read in a long time.
To be honest, I am very disappointed. The artwork is really good, and as I have mentioned, I love the premise. And the first chapter looks very promising. I longed for a very good generic shonen manga, and I thought I was reading one. Sadly, I was mistaken. It's easy to write generic. It's not easy to make it exciting though.
Current rating: (Up to chapter 10) B- (Pretty arts, but everything else is forgettable, not going to continue reading because it bores the crap out of me. Give it B- just because the beginning looks promising.)
|Saturday, June 23rd, 2012|
So I finally got hospitalized for the first time. It's also my first time getting IV drip. To be honest, it's a nightmare experience, but I am glad it's over.
Around a week ago, I felt a bit weak, and at night I got a light fever. I thought I caught cold so I just ate some cold medicines and didn't think all that much. The next day, the fever returned, except it's noticeably worse. I felt ridiculously cold at night despite wearing a thick sweater, double blanket and all of this without air con. This went on for a few days, and when I asked my mum for thermometer, it showed 39.5 C. That was when I began to suspect that this was no ordinary fever.
I decided to go to Doctor and he suspected either Typhoid Fever or Dengue Fever. He prescribed me some medicines, and told me to get blood test if I didn't get better. By the next day, I felt worse, so I decided to go for blood test, and as I have suspected, I got Typhoid Fever positive.
For those who aren't familiar with the illness, it is caused by certain bacteria, and it invaded human's intestines. So basically my intestines are being infected and I got fever because of it.
This isn't my first time getting Typhoid Fever. I have gotten once when I was around 9 years old (I didn't get hospitalized though). I heard that this illness can reoccur again if I ate something bad. So whatever nasty thing I accidentally ate caused them to become active once again.
So, I went to see doctor again after blood test, and he suggested for me to get hospitalized for a few days. He is worried if my situation will get worse if I didn't, so I complied (even though I felt like screaming no inside T~T)
The nurse came to insert the IV drip, and lol I looked like I was about to piss my pants. It's not as painful as I thought but it sure felt very uncomfortable. Like you got this gigantic thing attached to you all the time. I was too chicken to move my hands, so I stuck with only my right hand. Attempting to read manga, wearing clothes, opening bottle with one hand prove to be an insane experience. XD;;;
The doctor and nurse told me not to be stressed or think too much, but I was obviously depressed being left alone in hospital, not knowing when I could get out. When my fever returned at night, I cried thinking I didn't get better so I might stuck longer in this nightmare hole. I basically have to discard my depressing thoughts by thinking something else - anime, manga, games, whatever.
So in the end, I stayed for 4 days before I got discharge, but it was the longest 4 days I ever had in my life. I was so happy when I got out, and I was finally able to sleep in peace...actually I slept too much after I got discharged lmao. Yesterday I slept like a total of 20 hours. XD;;;
Hopefully I can get better soon and finally can continue making games ;u;
|Monday, June 4th, 2012|
Pajama na Kanojo
This was made by the Dougashi Kaden mangaka, which really surprised me because it's very different. If Dogashi Kaden totally ripped Eyeshield 21, then Pajama na Kanojo is just another Ichigo 100% lol. You got a boy with two girls vying for love. The art is very nice though, the story on the other hand...is barely acceptable. The ghost part was interesting in the beginning, but it wears off as the chapters goes. It's like the author doesn't really use its gimmick at all. Instead we got a lot of useless fan service. Orz
First impression (Up to chapter 12): B- (It's okay...but I don't know who I can recommend this to, other than maybe if you are a fan of harem and fan service.)
Sensei no Bulge
Made by the mangaka of Oumagadouki Doubutsuen. They are very different though, which is good because I'm not a fan of OD. It's not like it's bad, just wasn't my cup of tea. Sensei no Bulge on the other hand is quite interesting. It's nothing mind blowing, but it does have pretty interesting set up. Basically, it's the prince and the piper Shonen Jump style.
First impression (Up to chapter 3): B+ (It shows plenty promise. The only thing hard to shallow is the art, but if you can by pass that, it should be fun to follow.)
Made by mangaka of Emma. The art is extremely detailed, probably one of the most detailed manga I've read in a long time. The story tells a young bride married to a 12 years old. It's slice of life, so the plot goes at an extremely slow pace, but there are incredibly amount of details about their life, background and atmosphere. I think it's a very refreshing read. Although I've got to admit, I'd prefer if it has a faster pace and less slice of life. I suspect I'll enjoy this better reading as a book than reading it online.
First impression (Up to chapter 10): B+ (From what I've seen, I'm pretty certain the setting is Mongolia. So, if you are into slice of life, historical romance, then I highly recommend this. At least the art is pure eye candy!)
Maybe I shouldn't even review this since I didn't even pass reading chapter two, but I'll chalk the reason why I didn't continue reading. The first reason is my hatred for Volleyball, so that alone kinda make me want to stop reading. The other is because this is like a poorer version of Diamond no Ace. If you really want to read a sport manga, go read that one instead.
First impression (Up to chapter 2): B
P.S: Claymore isn't ending LMAO! It's editor mistake. What a complete false alarm! XD;;; I doubt my previous rating would change though.
|Tuesday, May 29th, 2012|
Wow, it's been a long time since the last time I feel so much from a JRPG. So, it's true that all good JRPG can only be found in DS nowadays!? LOL, I have more reasons to get that console. My list of games to buy is getting longer ^^;;;
Radiant Historia is a bit of an obscure title, made by Atlus (Shin Megami Tensei, Persona, Catherine). They are famous for making good JRPG, so I do have quite a lot of expectation of the game. Not to mention that people had been comparing this to Chrono Trigger, my all time favorite game. So you can imagine that my expectation is off the roof.
In any case, it's no Chrono Trigger, that's for sure. The game deals with Time Traveling, but it does it differently, and the overall feel of the game is very different. I actually don't get the comparison, lol. The story is actually more comparable to Final Fantasy X, and it also reminds me of World Destruction and Legend of Mana - what's with desertification, mana and sacrifice.
So what's make RH a good story? Actually to be honest, it's pretty cliche. lol. I could guess the plot twist miles away, and the overall scope of the game is not something grandiose. It's limited to a continent, and it only revolves around a few kingdoms. It's not like an epic adventure ala CT, or incredibly intricate like CC. Even so, RH is good at what it does. It takes many of my favorite cliches and turns them into a memorable story.
One of the biggest factors of why I enjoy RH so much is the main character, Stocke. It's been such a long time since I enjoy a JRPG main character. I probably put Stocke up there as my top JRPG heroes, along with Zidane. Stocke is quite unique for a hero. He is quiet and distant, but he is neither emo nor arrogant which usually is the pitfall of this type of character achetype (Squall, Sasuke came to mind) Stocke is actually the one who regularly cheer people up and is humble at what he does. He prefers to be a supporter than the one in the spotlight, which is quite unusual as heroes usually end up as the leader.
And unlike many of those cool character archetype, Stocke is actually very thoughtful and caring. Beyond his cold, no nonsense persona, he is actually a warm person, and it became even more obvious as the story goes - when he's finally became more comfortable acknowledging it. The character development of Stocke is amazing in that, it's subtle and perfectly implemented in the story.
Not to mention, Stocke is also skillful at what he does. He is perceptive, he catches on things quickly, and at times incredibly bad ass. The scene where he learned Heiss technique and used it to counter him is just so awesome!
Those above is enough to make me love the character, but what seals the deal is the theme of sacrifice that builds around his character. He always quietly help people, and it is demonstrated really well when he gained the White Chronicle. He goes around helping people from behind without expecting anything in return. The game ending is so poetic and beautiful, I am utterly speechless. Q^Q That really elevated him to my top favorite character ever,
So enough praises, RH is not perfect, like I said, it's not Chrono Trigger. The bad endings are a complete mixed bag. Even the implementation is questionable. I know some people like them for showing that making bad choices can have consequences unlike most JRPG, but the way it works, it's all boils down to choosing between continue or get a bad ending. There really isn't enough variety or true branching.
I can probably hand wave that if only they didn't make some of choices ridiculous, or utterly pointless. I mean choosing to accept Hugo's offer, like O RLY? It's so forced, as if the creators made them for the sake of it. :S Let's not forget the infamous Marco's ending. Way to make him totally out of character >__> I used to like Marco but that ending made him my least favorite character in the game.
Speaking of Marco, there's Raynie. It's a shame that both Raynie and Marco are such a thrown away characters. I read an interview saying that both weren't originally planned and they were tossed in just to appeal to people. Bad move, I have to say. Both of them have little relevant to story, so much that their existence didn't matter. >__> I do however, enjoy Raynie and Stocke side romance, no matter how underdeveloped it is. lol. It makes the ending a bit more fuller.
Other characters are not bad. I like Rosch, Sonja and Stocke friendship. I especially like the ending when Stocke saved Kiel. It makes me so emotional Q^Q I also like Eruca and Aht. Everyone has nice characterization and decent character interaction.
The villains on the other hand...*sigh This game could have been almost perfect if not because of the villains being immensely dumb. With the exception of Heiss, everyone else is KILLED OFF SCREEN!!! WHY!? Orz Protea looks like she may be a last boss, but she was killed off pathetically. Dias and Selvan are worse since they both played prominent parts, yet they died in the most idiotic way. You didn't even get to fight them! Orz Hugo and Noah...another really pathetic confrontation we have here. I don't even feel like the good guys are winning >__<; Palomides? Oh, he is just your stock soldiers. He doesn't even get characterization beyond his introduction. Seriously, what is wrong with all the villains in this game? They are total failures.
Heiss is the only redeeming villain as I greatly empathize with his plight. The only problem though, he barely appears 95% in the game. :/
Despite that, I still greatly enjoy RH. The ending alone is enough to make me recommend the game to everyone. Stocke has the best finishing line in any JRPG! Q^Q
Speaking of which, the music is also another factor why I recommend this greatly! Made by the composer of Legend of Mana, Kingdom Hearts, Yoko Shimomura. There aren't that many tracks, but they are all masterpieces.
Final Rating: A (This gave me hope that good JRPG still exist! X3)
|Monday, April 30th, 2012|
Yes, it ended lol.
I assumed it's not really the end of the entire manga, but more like an end of an arc since no one's really talking about it. Plus the ending is really lackluster...even for an ending of an arc.
But anyway, here's my review of Claymore - a somewhat odd series that managed to get my attention every month. I wouldn't say this is a masterpiece, it's pretty far from it, but it's still entertaining nonetheless. I'd say it's a little closer to mindless read. The artwork is very nice, many gorgeous character designs, and the action is clear and easy to follow unlike many other shonen manga. Just don't try to read too deeply...as the story quality is fairly all over the place, filled with deus ex machina and unbelievable plot twist.
This manga is mostly character driven than story driven. There is a story, but I don't think I'm following it for that. At best you have some plot twist about the organization, but that's it. Nothing particularly ground breaking. All the interesting stuff lies in the characters. There are multitude of characters in Claymore, and likely you are bound to meet one that you would enjoy. There are also plenty of strong females, so those who are sick of useless heroines, Claymore might just be for you.
Speaking of heroine, I don't like Clare. lol. Naivety and stubborn aren't really a good combination. It doesn't help that she always get the plot armor, making her a walking deus ex machina. I do however, enjoy her relationship with Theresa. It's nicely done. One of my personal favorite moments in the manga.
The good thing about Claymore is that...the story doesn't always focus on Clare. There are many other characters who take the spotlight. Some may consider this a detriment, but I like it, mostly because I'm not fond of Clare. XD;;;
My favorite character happened to be Miria, who I believe the closest to the second main character. She's always in charge whenever Clare isn't around, and pretty much takes the spotlight in the latter part of the manga. She's also the one who led the rebellion against the organization and eventually succeeds in the end.
Miria is strong, smart and has a very cool ability, but unfortunately she shares a rather similar problem to Clare...the plot armor on her is pretty strong lol. Despite this, she has a nice development, and I quite enjoy her inner turmoil. It's strange that Clare lacks this, as her sole existence in the story is just to revenge on Priscilla...and perhaps find Raki. The problem with this is that...Clare hardly meets with both characters, making her a static character with little development. Compared to Miria who is constantly thrown into conflict with the organization, which her a league more interesting.
There are some other interesting characters such as Riful, Theresa, Priscilla etc, but the majority of them don't stay for too long. Riful in particularly got a short end of the stick. She is not alone in that department. Almost every abyssal have a very anti-climatic death. It's a shame as I really like abyssal designs. They are usually very creative, and one of the reasons why I enjoy reading the manga.
Last but not least, the ending...oh lol... Recently I read nothing but horribly cop out endings, but when it comes to Claymore...I was truly stunned. I was like "That's it?" then burst out laughing seconds later. I don't know if there will be sequels, but even for the arc itself...it's still very cop out.
Rating: B+ (Enjoyable mindless action manga, lots of cool design, but that's it. Everything else is all over the place.)
P.S: Speaking of which, this is quite a unique shonen as in, it feels more like seinen, and it's almost devoid of male characters. It's not even harem nor yuri. :P
|Thursday, April 19th, 2012|
Another manga ended. At least this one ends in a high note, so it's not too bad. Without further ado, here's my review:
To be honest, I thought the beginning and the premise is bad. lol. I almost wanted to skip reading this just because the beginning was so weak. I'm glad I didn't, because as soon as the series went deeper into the world of manga, that's when all the fun stuff start.
At first, I didn't find the two main characters appealing, but Mashiro and Takagi have pretty nice dynamic interaction when they are working together. One of the best things this manga deal with is problem solving. I like it when both encountered problems with manga making, and they will somehow come up with a way to solve them.
As for how they actually solve the problems...unfortunately is a mixed bag. Some work, some don't, and others...are just far fetched - for example, in the name of friendship and hardwork, your manga suddenly become better. O RLY? I wish life were that easy. lol.
Other times, they deal with many interesting themes, such as quality of manga, what makes things popular, niche vs mainstream, etc - I quite like the multitude of questions this manga pose. Unfortunately, the same thing happened with problem solving, the way they come up with the conclusions...are often making a sweeping statement - at best just opinions. I wouldn't mind it if the manga didn't force it to my face as a fact - by making just everyone in the series agree with them lol. Btw, Eiji is the worst offender at this. I get that he's a genius, but man...his opinion is literally the word of God. I love Eiji for having many interesting quirks, but this is the part that killed his character for me.
I remember one of my favorite parts in the manga is when Fukuda team had a meeting to discuss about their manga. Aoki and Kougi served as a fantastic foil to the team, especially when Aoki thought Kougi's manga wasn't bad, but artistic. These different points of view are something that sadly missing in the entire manga. Aoki took a back seat, Kougi was forgotten...it's like the manga really wanted to annihilate any chance of a third opinion. It's sad, really.
This problem persists in the entire manga - despite this, it still strangely managed to become enjoyable. A large part of it thanks to many instances of humor. I really like the part when Takagi working hard to come up with a new manga idea, which eventually become PCP. It was really well done. I think it is the best moment of the entire manga. All the planning, the brainstorming, Iwase antics - they were all done very well. Unfortunately, due to how good it was, Reversi, their final manga, seemed so lack luster in contrast, which is a shame, since it's supposed to be the best manga in their universe lol.
Let's not forget about the manga biggest moral message: make a manga you want to make, don't drag it for the sake of popularity. I wish the authors would follow their own beliefs. lol. If Nakai, Shiratori, Nanamine arcs are any indication...we know how much they stretched the manga until I lost my interest before they finally realized that it's time to end. I'm really glad they ended it though, any longer, I would probably grade this manga a lot lower.
Last but not least, the ending. It's very fitting as the finale, and I really think they did a good job, staying true to the manga overall theme. While I want to call BS for it's relative coincidence over coincidence, and their victory over everything come way too convenient for my liking - I come to let it go when I realize that this is after all, a shonen manga. I shouldn't be so harsh when it comes to realism lol.
Overall: B+ (Good, but overall a mixed bag. I like many stuff, and dislike many stuff. The middle part is the best part of the entire manga. Dragged a lot 2/3 after, at the very least it ends with a bang. Recommended for people who enjoy sport, slice of life, romance comedy, and manga about making manga.)
P.S: I forgot to mention about the romance element of this manga...I'll be honest, it's very bad lol! I wish they did better on it, but hey...it is shonen manga. XD;;;
|Sunday, April 8th, 2012|
I haven't watch anything in a long time. I got a bit bumped since the recent stuff I watched are pretty disappointing. (Area no Kishi anime doesn't exist. >___> That piece of abomination... I could possible write ultra long essay to list out what is wrong with that anime, but I'll save you all from my rant.)
That said, I decided to give Kuroko no Basuke a chance since Production IG is the one who animated it, so I could at least dream that they won't screw up. And my verdict is...
Wow, that was very nice! Nice animation, and faithful to boot. I was afraid that they might cut off some details, but they actually preserved all of it. I'm very pleased with this first episode. I pretty much don't have anything to complain...I suppose if I have to nitpick, maybe they could have better opening animation :P
Anyway, I hope they will keep this up. I haven't seen much good sport anime lately. They usually get the short end of stick. Kuroko is a good sport manga, so if they follow it faithfully, it should be pretty fun to watch.
Btw, Kuroko is actually comparable to Prince of Tennis than...say Cross Game/Major. You need some suspension of disbelief, since everything is greatly exaggerated. ^^; If you think Kuroko's invisibility is ridiculous, it's gonna get much much worse later on. XD;;;
First Impression Rating: A- (Highly recommended for sport fans :D)
|Friday, March 2nd, 2012|
Lately I came to realize that most of my favorite characters are...perverts. XD;;;
Sanji (One Piece) is hopelessly into woman, to the point of that being his only weakness.
Midou Ban (Get Backers) gropes women any time he's given a chance.
Zidane (Final Fantasy IX) flirts around and somewhat considered himself a charmer.
Kindaichi (Kindaichi Shonen no Jikenbo) has perverted face written all over his face.
Linghu Chong (Smiling Proud Wanderer) enjoys flirting with girls.
Pop (Dai no Daiboken) definitely enjoys staring at tits.
O__o; LOL! I secretly like perverts??? LMAO! Anon being my favorite character in X-note totally doesn't help. LMAO!
In my defense, these characters all have commonalities in that they are all playful, and perversion is merely a facade to hide their real self. Despite being a pervert, none of these characters ever hurt girls, some of them are even hopelessly romantic and loyal once they found their true love. Last but not least, the perversions are played for laugh more than anything.
|Friday, February 24th, 2012|
LOL! That's some interesting thing I found today. I didn't know they share the same mangaka. Now everything kinda makes sense. lmao. I didn't recognize the art style mainly because as nice as it is, the style is too common in Josei. ^^;
In any case, Eden no Hana was well known for plagarism (Slamdunk, REAl, and a bunch of other stuff). I happened to read the manga back when I was in Singapore. My friend rented the books, and I was like "Hey, isn't this like the one mentioned in news?"
It turned out that the manga itself has like totally nothing to do with basketball. lol. And the one that she plagiarized was like totally unneeded. While I don't agree with plagiarism, I know many other artists that has plagiarized and they get away with it (Black Cat, D.Gray man come to mind).
On the other hand, the one that worries me now is how this will effect me seeing Chihayafuru. Like it or not, I cannot deny the similarities of it with HnG. It is actually the only biggest reason of why I cannot enjoy Chihayafuru as much as I'm supposed to. The manga is good, but I got reminded by HnG almost constantly.
The other thing that is funny is the two main guys, Arata and Taichi. Their characters are recycled from Eden no Hana. And if this is any indication, then expect Taichi to be the one who ended up with Chihaya. I'm not entirely sure what to think about this, as much as I like them to get together...but then it's true that the author has side kicked Arata through much of the earlier volumes. I say the chance of that happening is high, unless the author decided to do switch-a-roo. lol.
|Thursday, February 2nd, 2012|
Well, it ended. I kinda expected it from last week chapter. The fact that the author admitted that he wrote himself to a wall. It's a pity.
I have to say I enjoyed his previous works better, but Kagami no Kuni isn't bad. I enjoyed pretty much every moment of it. It maybe short lived, but I have fun regardless. The romance is always so sweet, and the characters are so lovable. The mirror idea is cool, too bad it wasn't fully utilized.
While I don't mind seeing Kagami no Kuni end, I am worried of whether I'll ever get the chance to see him serialized his works. He is one of my most favorite mangaka, and I wish to see him doing more works, whether it's short or not.
Overall rating: B+
|Saturday, January 28th, 2012|
A Zelda Game~! Wow, that's rare for me!
A little bit history of my background on Zelda...I've actually only played one before, and that is Link's Awakening in gameboy. At that time, I was very impressed with the intricate game design, puzzles, and dungeon. It was nothing sort of genius. Despite this, Zelda has never made it to my top favorite game. In the end, I have always place story and character as more important than gameplay, and unfortunately Zelda lacks this greatly.
Now onto Skyward Sword...
The first thing that surprised me is that...how familiar everything looks despite it has been like almost 20 years apart! I didn't have a hard time following the gameplay at all. Everything is nostalgic, from how Link dramatically opens his treasure box, to the floating hearts, to collecting heart pieces/small keys/map...even the weapons are similar! We have bombs, arrows, and hook shot. Of course not to forget Link's Master Sword and shield.
Someone mentioned how Zelda franchise is the opposite of FF, in that FF is an evolving one while Zelda stays to its root. Most consider this a good thing, after all why would you need to break an already successful formula. Others don't like it because it's repetitive. I'm in the middle. I like a combination of the two---An innovation that stays to its root. A good example of such franchise would be Breath of Fire, which is unfortunate since it's not as popular, and is a dead franchise.
Anyway, back to Zelda: Skyward Sword...as usual, the gameplay is very charming. The dungeon design is very well made, and I enjoyed looking at variety things Link can do. From playing harps, to drawing with his swords, to blowing dust away - so many innovative stuff. In the gameplay department, I don't have much things to say other than it looks fun.
However, the story itself...is rather disappointing. Link's Awakening may have paper thin storyline, the revelation was still rather shocking. In case of Skyward Sword, I guessed it 10 miles away. Why is this? Because it's a total rip off of one of my favorite JRPG, Lunar!
*Spoilers for story comparison here*
In Lunar, you have the heroine Luna, who turned out to be the goddess, and she reincarnated herself to be human. And the hero happened to be the destined one as the dragon knight, the one who protects the goddess. He must go through all kind of trials, getting equipment before he finally obtain the sword. He will pull the sword upward to the sky and transforms into the dragon knight and defeats the villain... Uh...did I just summarize Skyward Sword to you? LOL!
The other problem I have is the characters! I once mentioned that if the side characters are more interesting than the main...then we have problem here! In Zelda, you have a silent hero, Link. Okay, not much imagination we can have here. Well, at least Zelda herself is quirky and cute...only to be absent 99% of the game. If this is 60 hours game, you will only see Zelda for about 1 hour. I'm sorry, I can't get attached to her at all.
Phi is equivalent to your fancy robot. She doesn't show any sign of personality until like the last 5 minutes of the game. Sorry, it's too late by then. And then we have like...who else? Most of them are forgettable. Even the villain is so generic. I am so evil, I am gay. I fought you 4 times and won't admit my defeat...ugh...
So yes, in general, Zelda is still that game I thought it is. An intricate game design packaged with flimsy story and characters. It's a shame. I like to see more story to balance it up.
While the main story is disappointing, the side quests are excellent! I have so much fun watching them. Can you believe that these super side NPC are 100 times more charming than the main characters? *sigh*
Overall rating: B+ (I can totally see why it sells, and why everyone likes it. But as someone who treasures story over gameplay, Zelda is not for me. But at least those side quests are enjoyable.)
|Wednesday, January 18th, 2012|
"If the future changes, then the past will change, too." --- The catchphrase of the direct sequel of Final Fantasy XIII.
If you are like me, who's trying to figure out just how illogical that catchphrase is, then congratulations, you still have common sense - because I honestly think Square-Enix has lost it.
First thing first, there are plenty misdirection in this "sequel". If you are expecting a continuation of what FFXIII set itself to be, then you might get disappointed. For one, you aren't going to control any characters in the original (san Lightning who you can control for the first 5 minutes.) And for that matter, despite having a box art featuring Lightning, she hardly appears in the story. The entire thing is a brand new story with old character cameos forced into a new situation, totally unrelated to the original. Okay, maybe not 100% unrelated, but FFXIII-2 is essentially a story about Noel, Caius and Yeul. Other stuff are...extras. lmao.
Thanks to this, the story feels tacked on to the world. The idea of time traveling is completely out of nowhere. Serah also gained a new ability out of nowhere. Lightning served the goddess Etro out of nowhere. So, yeah, don't bother looking for a continuation. Just think of it as a new story. It's easier that way.
In any case, the changes are not necessarily a bad thing. No more Fal'cie, L'cie, Purge, Focus crap, which I really dislike. The previous characters aren't as prominent is also a good thing, because I hate them all. A brand new cast is welcome, even if the new cast aren't exactly the most appealing bunch, but I can tolerate them better. (And Moggle is the cutest thing ever.)
The biggest changes are the setting and the gameplay. They are a lot more variety, and a lot more interesting to see. I enjoy the time traveling element added to the story, despite how nonsensical the system is. Also the music is such a treat. I love them much better than FFXIII music. And I don't think I need to mention the graphics. This is pretty much why many are still on FF boat.
The melodramatic soap opera is still there, but there are lesser than the one in FFXIII. In general, I find FFXIII-2 a definite improvement from FFXIII. I cringe a lot less, so that's a good sign. While Caius is a very dull villain, and Noel is a very standard hero, I enjoy Yeul most out of 3 new characters. She may not have much personality, but I find her endearing for odd reason. Maybe it's the voice lol...
By the way , the ending(s), there really isn't one. The true ending ended with "to be continued". This is possibly the biggest complaint I have heard from many Japanese who played the game. Squeenix just basically tell you to buy the ending. LOLOLOL!
I did however, enjoy much of the side endings, or paradox endings. The utterly nonsensical Flan ending, to the incredibly hilarious Snow and Serah ending...well, at least they know how to write crack endings. XD
Rating: B (If you can swallow illogical, convoluted story, soap opera, and the lack of proper conclusion, FFXIII-2 is quite decent. At least I enjoyed it much more than FFXIII. But if you hope for anything like the older FF, then yeah, this is average at best.
Coming up next: Zelda - Skyward Sword review. :D
|Tuesday, January 17th, 2012|
So 4 days after ToA has been released. How does it fare so far? It's probably too early to tell, but this is roughly how it does so far.
Unfortunately ToA doesn't do as well as X-note (as expected), but it's still doing better than OASE (thank goodness!). There are some new promoting method I tried, such as reblogs in Tumblr, and posting in lemma, but both haven't generate desirable sale. I wonder if I want to do it again.
I like Lemmasoft, but I always have fear of posting in forum. It wasn't just forum, I have fear of promoting my games in general. Maybe it's my defensive side playing on me, but my nervousness get worst the instance I posted a thread in Lemma and Tumblr. I can't sleep, feeling nausea, increased heart rate, and overall feel depressed. (even though I know I really shouldn't.)
I understand if I can't overcome this, I will never make it as game maker. Marketing is extremely important after all. Somewhere in me, I just wish people would just use the power of word of mouth, and let it market itself. But I know I am asking the impossible.
Another thing to note is that...yes, Otome sells better than any genre. I have no doubt of it now. But serious VN may fare well enough given a good story. So maybe if I get bored making Otome Games, I will switch to writing VN. Still, it doesn't answer the question I wanted to know most - if comedy as a genre has a chance to thrive in VN world. That is what I wish to make most. But OASE made me afraid, very afraid.
|Monday, January 9th, 2012|
I randomly picked a manga and I got this. It's a survival manga, something akin to Gantz, Psyren or Enigma, but less supernatural, and more sci-fi. Since this is a Shonen Magazine manga, don't expect realism as much of it is pretty idealized. You also need to throw away some suspension of disbelief, and have tolerance towards common shonen trope and ecchi. Since I love shonen in general, I have little difficulty in enjoying it.
Like Gantz, Psyren and Enigma, you got a group that trapped in a place, and they had to struggle to survive. In case of Eden no Ori, you have a pretty large group, around 300 who ended up in an island inhabited by extinct animals. Much of the survival include stuff such as fighting animals, trying to find the way out of the island, and solve mysteries. There are also fights within people as human nature show its ugliest side.
The idea of fighting against extinct animals reminds me a lot of Doraemon Adventure: Nobita's Dinosaur. To some extent also reminds me of Digimon. Albeit Eden no Ori is aimed for a slightly older audience considering the large amount of fanservice, violence and death. Still, it's nothing comparable to Gantz, which I don't recommend unless you are into hardcore gore.
While the content is seemingly mature, what breaks the suspension of disbelief is how "shonen" this all is. From the main character Akira, who's very much your 101 shonen hero, earnest, never give up, always attempt to protect everyone, etc - to the vast amount of useless fanservice that popped in the wrong time - only bad guys die, hero is always saved by the power of plot shield - last but not least, the sheer amount of idealism and cheesy speeches sprinkled throughout the manga.
Individually the characters are decent but nothing memorable in general. Yet, they also have the ability to make you feel attached to them as they went through many hardship together. This is part of the major charm on Eden of Ori. I grew attached to most of them as I read further, so much more than what I originally thought. I ended cheering on them to win against all odd.
While I do enjoy the survival and the character interaction, what Eden no Ori did best though is surprisingly, the mystery. They are revealed in the right time and in the right amount just to get you interested enough to keep reading. The reveal, while not entirely original, they are still revealed in a satisfying manner, and I really enjoyed the manga thanks to this.
Current Rating (Up to chapter 137): Beginning: B, Middle: B+, Latter part: A- (The start is slow, but it becomes better as the survival gradually blend with the suspense and mystery. I highly recommend if you like both survival and mystery.)
|Monday, January 2nd, 2012|
More like first impression, since only 8 chapters are out.
Nisekoi is Komi Naoshi latest serialized manga. If you aren't familiar with Komi, he is the mangaka for Double Arts, and several other one shots. I have read most of Komi stuff, while I do adore the first 10+ chapters of Double Arts, I am not really as enticed as everyone else when it comes to Komi. He has lots of talents and cool ideas, but he lacks the ability to execute it in the long run. Double Arts shows his weakness in that, that's why it was weak in the second half and got axed as a result.
Now Nisekoi is very different from everything Komi has done. For some it's a bad thing, especially that Nisekoi follows the guideline on how to write generic manga 101. You won't find anything original in it. You have seen it in many other manga. It's nothing groundbreaking.
At the same time, I didn't mind it as much as most people. I'm quite immune to cliche, as it is unavoidable aspect in our current over-exposed society thanks to internet. Ideas have been reused, revamped, etc. to the point that you feel everything has been done. To me, what matters most is the execution. Originality is merely an icing of the cake.
So how does Nisekoi fares in term of execution? To be honest, even the execution is generic. The characters are generic (classic tsundere and childhood friend). The comedy has been done over and over again (girls can't cook, faking romance). And is it just me...the art style and story-telling bear resemblance to Yasuhiro Kano's. Maybe that's why I appreciate it slightly better than most despite it being very generic.
The verdict thus far? I have to say I enjoy it for mindless read, but if I look back, it is indeed a rehash of everything else. The comedy? I have seen better elsewhere. The romance? It's predictable. Do I recommend this? I don't know. Unless you're really into Romance Comedy, and don't mind generic max.
Current rating (up to chapter 8): B
|Saturday, December 31st, 2011|
Stolen from Holly (Because I'm bored.)
1) Was 2011 a good year for you?
2) What was your favorite moment of the year?
3) What was your least favorite moment of the year?
Hmm, quite a bit of crap moments, but nothing particularly horrible, I guess. Especially if I compared it to the dreadful 2010.
4) Where were you when 2011 began?
At my big bro's house.
5) Who were you with?
My big bro and family.
6 ) Where will you be when 2011 ends?
At my big bro's house lol.
7) Who will you be with when 2011 ends?
My big bro and family. LMAO.
8.) Did you keep your New Year’s resolution of 2010?
Only with X-note, lmao. I didn't get to release anything else this year *sad face*
9) Did you break up with anyone in 2011?
Not anyone I remember.
10) Did you make any new friends in 2011?
Cumi, Shirow, Roxie.
11) Who are your favorite new friends?
A certain seafood. LMAO
12) What was your favorite month of 2011?
13) Did you go abroad in 2011?
To attend CF 2011.
14) How many different states did you travel to in 2011?
Don't know. lol.
15) Did you lose anybody close to you in 2011?
16) Did you miss anybody in the past year?
Quite a bit.
17) What was your favorite movie that you saw in 2011?
Movie? I don't watch any. Oh, wait, I did watch Mean Girls in KL. It's an ok movie.
18) What was your favorite album from 2011?
I don't listen to any.
19) How many concerts did you see in 2011?
I have never gone to concert.
20) Did you have a favorite concert in 2011?
Oh, god, can someone change the questions to something I can answer?
21) Did you drink a lot of alcohol in 2011?
22) Did you do a lot of drugs in 2011?
23) Did you do anything you are ashamed of this year?
24) What was the biggest lie you told in 2011?
I lied that I can release Area-X and ToA this year. *SHAME
25) What was the worst lie someone told you in 2011?
My eyes are lying at me. I swear I didn't make mistake when I registered for ACEN, but whatever...
26) Did you treat somebody badly in 2011?
Probably, but I don't remember.
27) Did somebody treat you badly in 2011?
Probably, but I don't remember.
28) How much money did you spend in 2011?
29) What was your most embarrassing moment of 2011?
I lost my wallet straight after Cumi lost hers. And I didn't even know I lost it until the airport called me. LMAO.
30.) What is one thing you did in 2011 that you’d never done before?
Eating Godiva chocolate.
31.) Did someone close to you give birth?
32.) What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
More games, more manga, more money. $___$
33.) What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
When I literally didn't sleep trying to finish ToA for CF, and FAILED *cries*
34.) What was your biggest achievement of the year?
35.) What was your biggest failure?
Area-X, Dragon Essence, ToA.
36.) Did you suffer illness or injury?
I got hit by badminton racket right on my head and collar bone. Got terrible headache that last for over a week.
37.) What was the best thing you bought?
Area no Kishi volume 23
38.) Whose behavior merited celebration?
39.) Whose behavior made you appalled?
Some people online. lol. (But they made me lol, too. I'm evil lolol~)
40.) Where did most of your money go?
41.) What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Area-X, Dragon Essence, ToA. XD
42.) Compared to this time last year, are you: a) happier or hardened? b) thinner or fatter? c) richer or poorer?
Happier and hardened, no change in weight, richer by a small percentage.
43.) What do you wish you’d done more of?
Draw more, make more games, write better stories.
44.) What do you wish you’d done less of?
Get sick less frequently. Complains less about useless things.
45.) How did you spend Christmas?
Sick at home. LMAO. It was like this last year, too. Christmas hates me.
46.) Did you fall in love in 2011?
47.) Any one-night stands?
Making ToA...Wait what?
48.) What was your favorite TV program?
Channel News Asia. For real, that's the only thing I watched and became my major inspiration for writing stories. If you wonder why my writing has became a shade darker, I blame it on real life news. It's THAT'S depressing.
49.) Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
50.) What was the best book you read?
Can I change that to manga, please? LMAO. The best manga I read this year is HxH and Area no Kishi. I'm also fond of Major.
51.) What was your greatest musical discovery?
That preschool music is surprisingly addictive.
52.) What did you want and get?
Lots of manga. XD
53.) What did you want and not get?
More Area no Kishi. I should have bought more *regret
54.) What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I did OASE sale, made Naoru's guide, and I'm 28. My birthday is always about work. LMAO.
55.) What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If I managed to release ToA.
56.) How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
I read some fashion magazine, and I feel inspired to design some clothes.
57.) What kept you sane?
I have never been sane.
58.) Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
59.) What song will always remind you of 2011?
Hotdog dance of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.
60.) Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011?
Be careful not to lose your wallet. Check if I'm registering something properly. Not to mistake Artist Alley with Art Show.
61.) Quote a song lyric that sums up the year
Let's do a hotdog dance!
LiveJournal for Mirage.