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Topics - Saephon

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Movies, TV, Books & Music / Attack On Titan
« on: May 18, 2013, 03:39:11 PM »

Wondering if anyone else here has been watching this show. The manga started in Japan a few years ago, but the anime adaptation just began last month, and it's quickly grabbing everyone's attention.

I don't watch anime often these days, but this is one of two recent series that have actually gotten me excited (The other one being Puella Magi Madoka Magica.) It takes place in a world where humanity has walled itself off into an enormous colony in order to protect itself from gigantic creatures called Titans. For thousands of years they've been safe, but of course we are introduced to the story just as something goes wrong, and the enormously unprepared populace is reminded of what their ancestors were hiding from.

The Titans themselves are very reminiscent of the off-putting, not-quite-human appearance of apostles in Berserk; specifically the crowd that gathers before the Eclipse. There is also another great scene that had me grinning in one of the later episodes, reminding me of a certain blond-haired character. I'll leave it at that.   :guts:

This series was really overhyped by a lot of my friends, so I was skeptical going in until I was finished with the 2nd episode. But really the "pilot" should be considered an hour long episode that was divided into two parts. I was hooked by the time the credits rolled, and I'm really interested to see where this story is going. On a final note, I haven't enjoyed an ending theme to an anime in a long time until this one came along. So catchy!

Anyone else here watching it, or a fan of the manga? Episode 7 should be airing in Japan later today.

Video Games / Star Wars: The Old Republic
« on: December 22, 2011, 07:33:16 AM »
Full disclosure:  I expected this game to suck. Not only have I grown tired of MMOs in general (6 years of WoW on and off will do that), my faith in BioWare has been slipping these past couple years.

So here's the twist ending: I'm liking TOR. A lot. The gameplay will feel right at home for anyone who's tried World of Warcraft; but at this point can you really blame them? It's the most successful MMO ever to exist. Borrowing heavily from it is a no-brainer, both financially and design-wise. Is it identical though? I'd have to say no. Where Warcraft's early game seems like a series of motions designed with just the goal of handing you your first set of gear, TOR jumps right into letting you make the call. Quests will frequently have multiple ways to complete, and bonus objectives pop up from time to time, offering you more rewards if you do something extra. The dialogue wheel we've all come to know so well also makes an appearance in this game's storyline. But I'm surprised to say it doesn't feel like a cheap version. It's more "Mass Effect 1" than, say, "Dragon Age 2" if that makes sense. And on that note, the voice acting's really good. No complaints.

Speaking of story, I'm enjoying my character's plotline so far. I love my companion; she's basically a 2nd main character who has traits of her own, and an affection system with gifts like in the DA games. Not only does my Sith Bounty Hunter affect quests with, I mean Dark Side decisions, but my companion can agree or disagree with my choices. It's not as cut and dry as "good" vs "evil". For example, my partner Mako is a fellow bounter hunter who will usually support the decision that makes us the most money. Alongside that though, she has a soft spot for helping female NPCs out. So it's kind of interesting.

I've only played two classes so far so I can't comment too much on the game's balance. I can however say though that PVP seems pretty even as far as classes go. And on that note, the battlegrounds are so fun. Some are warcraft-like with capture points and stuff, but my favorite is Huttball, which is basically capturing and passing a ball into the enemy's endzone, while avoiding traps and trying not to get killed by the other team. Kinda Fusion Frenzy-ish.

The game isn't perfect by any means. There are some weaknesses and bugs in the UI, like a random chance for your guild roster to be incomplete or disappear altogether...that one's pretty annoying. I also think the Auction House is extremely inefficient, and professions aren't as balanced as they should be when it comes to making money. That said however, I'm amazed at how polished TOR is at its launch. There are so many things they did right, and the things that need work are being responded to rather quickly. BioWare seems to be listening to feedback as attentively as possible, and a lot of improvements have been patched already. There doesn't seem to be a lack of content either, like the kind that plagued Age of Conan. A lot of players are already in their 40's and aren't finding themselves bored.

To summarize: I sound like I work for BioWare's marketing firm, but I honestly did not expect to like this game. And I'm having a blast. It's very polished and well-made, and it couldn't have come out at a better time. If any MMO has the potential to match WoW's success, I think it's gonna be this one. All that money they poured into it does not seem to have gone to waste.

Video Games / The Witcher 2
« on: May 14, 2011, 12:54:18 AM »
Didn't see a thread for this game; decreed it necessary to make one  :badbone:

I'll be blunt. I'm still trying to finish the first game. The combat is a little odd and there are some rather annoying glitches and poor lines of dialogue here and there, but everything else is fantastic (Especially in the "enhanced edition" they reissued that fixes a lot of problems.) I've been keeping up with the news on the sequel, and so many of my problems with the first one have already been directly addressed by the developers. Add onto that some actually interesting and morally ambiguous decisions that might affect the ending, and you have a winner of a game. In other words; lots of promises and high expectations. Let's hope they come true.

Oh, and this little gem dropped today:   Free DLC? What is this, 2006?

If it turns out as good as it looks, The Witcher 2 will make up for the travesty that was Dragon Age 2 for me. I don't know what's been going on at BioWare lately, but it's rubbing me the wrong way. Mostly the "I don't feel I should be spending this much money on something so mediocre" way. Anyone else have similar thoughts/excitement?

Creation Station / Femto Model
« on: November 25, 2009, 04:33:16 PM »
Howdy guys. I saw Aphasia's thread and it inspired/reminded me to start showing my work here, since I picked Femto as a project a couple weeks ago. It's nowhere near as awesome as his and I've still got some things to tweak before I bring it in for sculpting, but as Berserk fans, I thought I'd see what you guys think.   :guts:  Here's a little preview, I'll add more when I get home. Thanks!

P.S. The funky green colors are just for my benefit. I enjoy modeling in turquoise.

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