Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Review: Rule Number 1

Eh, not an anime or videogame, but its an Asian film, so I guess it'll work.  

Rule Number 1 was the film of the day at Asian-Horror-Movies.com so I decided to give it a try.  I was quite happy with the results.  Despite being on Asian-Horror-Movies.com, the movie would fall better into the genre of thriller.  And the movie keeps you on your toes, well, once you figure out whats going on.  

Lee Kwok-keung is a small time cop.  He apparently works at a parking garage security guard.  One night a car pulls up, and the driver has no seatbelt on, and has very flimsy excuses.  As he was about to let the driver go with a just a warning, he notices the tail lights are out, and asks if the driver has a screwdriver in the car so they Can fix it.  Lee taps on the trunk of the car and he notices blood coming out from it.  The driver is busy looking for a screwdriver, and Lee forces the trunk open to reveal a dead body.  The driver notices that Lee opened the trunk and pulls a gun and shoots Lee a few times.  Due to a distraction, Lee is able to dispatch the driver.  After Lee recovers from the wounds, Lee is transferred to the Miscellaneous Affairs Office of the police, which deals with basically paranormal activity.  

Thats about all I'm gonna say about the plot.  The plot can be kind of confusing in the beginning, spawning more questions that answers, but once you get answers it all falls together.  Thats not to say the plot doesn't have its twists, far from it.

I think one of the major points of why I like Asian films is because of the sound/music.  Hollywood movies tend to have extravagant soundtracks, but this Asian films don't always have that.  Rule Number 1 for instance has almost no music, but the dreaded ambient music in the most chilling scenes.  Makes it more enjoyable and thrilling in my opinion.

The characters are likable, especially Inspector Wong.  I liked the characters so much I wish they hadn't had to go through with what was happening to them, but a movie isn't made that way. 

I enjoyed this movie.  The subtitles on the version I watched were horrible, but I was able to watch it despite that.  I recommend this to anyone who likes a good thriller.

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Fujin from Final Fantasy VIII

Fanart of Fujin.


First in a series of fanart depicting lesser known characters, or characters that don't get enough fanart.

Not much to say that wasn't already posted on DeviantArt.

Agent Aika

I started watching Agent Aika.  OMG the pantyshots...  I thought Ikkitousen was bad, its got nothing on Agent Aika.  And I've only watched the first episode...

As I've only watched the first episode, I can't say too much about it thus far.  I can say the animation quality is really nice.  The subs could use a little work, as they often overlap each other, but its only for a second.  I know thats nitpicking, but its enough to notice.  First episode and theres already action, pantyshots and nudity.  Oh and sexual innuendo.  The innuendo was right after the opening too...  

Thursday, 12 February 2009


My definition of a vector is probably different from the majority, but thats cause I'm ignorant.  Any ways, I learned how to make vectors in Photoshop, so obviously I had to play around and I decided to make a Wild ARMs 3 fanart of Virginia into a vector.  I think it turned out decent.  


Heh, by linking this, now everyone knows my other alias.  Oh well, its not like I was trying to hide it really.  I'd rather have people that know me as Talentless Troll know that I'm Rogutaan than the other way around.  Talentless Troll is my 4chan name, whereas Rogutaan is my more innocent side.

Anyways, got a deviant watch from a big Wild ARMs fan, which is pretty cool.  Its more or less motivated me to finish a fanart I began ages ago when I first finished WA3.  My art style's changed, re: I've gotten better at drawing, since when I started it, so hopefully the styles won't clash.  

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Review - Dawn of Mana

I just finished Dawn of Mana for the PS2 the other day.  It was a fun game, but not without its shortcomings.

Gameplay wise its quite different from the previous games in the series.  Instead of an overhead view of the world, its now a 3d platformer type game, not unlike Zelda Ocarina of Time.  I've read reviews on the game that seem to give the game bad marks just because of problems with the camera angles.  While there are indeed instances where I didn't know what the heck was going on because the camera screws up, I actually laughed hysterically because of it.  While yes this could be a hindrance on bosses, fortunately it never happened to me during a boss.  The camera angles made jump quests especially hard, fortunately there aren't that many jump quests though.   So yeah, the camera could have used some work, but I don't think thats why the game should have gotten 4.5/10 on some of the reviews I read that basically just said the camera was the worst point.  Also, the camera in any game will have issues, especially in games such as this.  

Dawn of Mana does have a learning curve.  They actually tell you just about everything you need to know in the prologue, but they really don't tell you how to execute this knowledge.  I learned stuff at the end of the game, that I should have been doing the entire game.  For instance, in the beginning I would use Keldy's whip thing and grab an item/enemy, and then release it by flinging it at an enemy.  I didn't realize until the end that I could have just used the square button to fling it, but keep it attached to the whip and pummel enemies with it over and over until one dies.  Would have made the game a lot easier.

Now would be a good time to point out the battle system.  Its quite different from any game I've ever played.  Enemies have a "Panic" meter, which basically means if they get hit by something, or something comes very close to hitting them, they freak out and are either stunned, or they start running away.  When they are stunned they will drop Medals when you hit them, which are basically how you level up.  Some medals increase HP, some SP, and some Max Attack.  Depending on what hit the enemy, and how many time the enemy was hit by something, the Panic meter has a higher countdown.  

The bosses overall weren't extremely hard.  The battles can however take quite  bit of time to do.  I died a few times on quite a few, but thats only because I couldn't figure out what to do to harm it. Once I figured out how to stun the boss, it was pretty easy.  

Graphically the game is beautiful.  This is definitely where the Dawn of Mana shines.  The Mana series has always been known for lush environments, and Dawn of Mana is no exception.  I had a lot of fun just wandering around looking at the world.  Its also really fun to look at 3D renderings of my favorite Mana series monsters, such as Rabites and Mushbooms.  I just wish they made more monsters from the series, like Sahagins and those ducks with the helmets.

Being a Mana game, the story reflects that.  Mana Tree is being destroyed, Mana Tree is destroyed, Mana Tree is reborn.  All in a tragic story revolving around Keldy and his friend Ritzia.  There are a few twists, though kind of predictable.  The game is quite short, which does make character development nearly non-existent, yet somehow you still feel for the characters.  My only complaint is that the story is very linear, so there really isn't too much replay value, apart from collecting all the ribbons.  A ribbon is a reward that boosts your abilities, you can only equip so many at a time at the beginning of a chapter.  I've never been one that must have 100% in a game, so I can't be bothered to get all the ribbons.

The music is also another shining point for Dawn of Mana.  Again the Mana series is known for good music.  All the music fits seamlessly to what is happening in the game.  Fierce boss battle music, calm tranquil ambient music, and emotional music in tragic scenes.  The music in the very end nearly made me shed tears.

Overall I thoroughly enjoyed the game.  I personally hate numbering systems for reviews so I won't put one.  Although quite different from the previous installments, this is not a detractor.  The game is still as fun as the rest and I definitely recommend playing it.  Dawn of Mana is not for the casual gamer however, so if you do get it and play it, save points can be few and far between, so be warned.  Despite its lack of replay value, the gameplay itself might make it worth playing again.

Talentless Troll has spoken!

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Review - MØUSE

So first anime mini-review:  MØUSE

First off, this is a fanservice anime.  I'm quite ashamed at how much I enjoyed the series.  By enjoy I don't mean it was really good, just that I had fun watching it.  Its far from being good.

Sorata Muon, has a secret identity: Mouse.  Mouse is a master thief, he can steal anything, even his motto is "There isn't anything Mouse can't steal."  Mouse has three buxom sidekicks, Mei, Hazuki and Yayoi.  Each one is in love with Mouse and always try to seduce him whenever given the chance.  In the beginning I really believed Mouse was gay by his reactions to the girls.  Mouse and the three girls all work as professors at college which also acts as Mouse's hideout.  Also present are three students which are in Mouse's class, and all seem to have a crush on Mouse, especially Michiko who actually has a few dates with Mouse, always on a day Mouse has announced he'll steal something.

The episodes are 15 minutes long, but really every two episodes should be condensed into one complete episode.  Each episode tells half a story arc.  For instance, in the first episode the chief inspector challenges Mouse to steal the newly constructed Odaiba Tower.  The second episode is when he actually steals it.  Then the third episode he declares the next item he'll steal, and the next episode he steals it, and so forth.  No actual plot comes in until the very end when Mouse's rival Woof comes in.  The resolution is quite anticlimactic.  

I watched the series dubbed.  The voices weren't atrocious, but there were some bad voice overs, especially Michiko.  Her voice was kind of graining.  Other voices are the standard issue anime dub voices.  I apparently missed out in the Japanese voices, since in the final episode an Idol was the voice actress of one of the characters.  Oh well.

Really the most memorable parts were the times Mouse's subordinates try to seduce him.  They were just there for fanservice and quick laughs, but the story really wasn't that awesome.  The series probably could have been better if there was more plot.  I mean, technically the series only had 6 episodes.  I know there are quite a few series that have that many episodes that have complete stories, but I just feel there should be more episodes to finish this series.  The series was based off a manga, so maybe the manga goes deeper?  Unfortunately the series has just started being scanlated into English so I can't compare the two, however I am currently downloading the chapters that have been translated.  I'll make another post when/if the series gets finished scanlated.

Overall, the fanservice really made the series, as the plot is nearly nonexistent and anticlimactic.  Despite that I did enjoy the series, it just feels like its missing something.  I wouldn't put it in my top list, but it wasn't really that bad either.   Decent enough, but not great.  If you get a chance to watch, and have nothing better to do it'll waste a few hours.  Don't go out of your way to see it though.

Talentless Troll has spoken!


Hmm, now that I figured out my email problem, that was a pain in the butt...  Apparently I didn't use my standard issue password at the time when I created my account so it kept saying I typed in the wrong password.  Well actually I didn't even realize I had a created a gmail account a while back, so I tried signing up and it said my desired username was already taken, and since I highly doubted that someone had already taken my name, I decided to try and log in.  I used every variation of my usual passwords, even thinking maybe I typed it in wrong so I purposefully misspelled the password hoping it would find it.  After I tried everything I used the "I forgot my password" button, and was able to reset the password, only I was stupid and wasn't paying attention to what I typed, so as I tried to sign in, I had the same problem.  And since I had already changed the password it wouldn't let me reset it again until 5 days later.  Well,  found the password finally, it was a misspelling because my MacBook Pro's keyboard usually misses the first letter when you start typing.  Its weird like that.  Anyways, I changed the password to what it *SHOULD* be.  And here I am.  

Alright down to business.  I am Talentless Troll.  This is one of my Blogs.  Well, its the first blog.  It's mainly gonna be about videogames and anime.  I want to point out right off the bat that I am *NOT* an Otaku.  I just like Anime and Videogames, and I sometimes go to the occasional convention.  I'll write a few reviews, but they won't really go in depth, just kind of how I felt about the anime/game.  There may be spoilers, though I will warn ahead of time if that post has spoilers.  Just read at your own risk.  Mainly I'll just post what I'm watching/playing and my feelings towards it.   I hate how blogs update backwards though, with the newest post on top so no one is gonna read this post once I have many posts made.  Oh well, such is the way...

Talentless Troll signing out.