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Messages - Cyrus Jong

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Video Games / Re: Dark Souls II
« on: October 07, 2017, 07:11:37 PM »
I don't disagree with everything being said about DS2, but there are a few great, memorable setpiece moments. In particular, one in the rain, and one in a tomb.

Those are definitely two of the better fights in the game, though my personal favorite took place in a swamp. I guess it helps it was a welcome break from all the oversized knights.

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Video Games / Re: Dark Souls II
« on: September 28, 2017, 02:43:44 PM »
snip

Dark Souls II, in my opinion, made a lot of missteps, and the introduction was only the first among them. It uses a lot of words to basically say "you're undead and that sucks," and spends all its time talking about "you" rather than the world like Demon's and Dark Souls did, which doesn't make for a captivating narrative when "you" are a completely blank slate with no discernible character or motivation.

If you think rolling feels off when you do it in a vacuum, wait 'til you actually try to seriously use it to dodge enemies. DkS2 gives your rolls fewer invincibility frames than in the past, and there's a hefty amount of hitbox dissonance going on with enemy attacks, so you're going to get hit by attacks that by all rights should never have touched you many, many, many times. If you want to avoid mitigate frustration, take my advice: don't ignore the Adaptibility attribute. Pump it up until your Agility is at least 92 ASAP; this will add enough I-frames to your dodge roll so that it won't be completely useless. You won't be able to avoid attacks due to the wonky hitboxes, but at least you might be able to dodge through them with proper timing. And thank Gwyn that From Software never used this system again.

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I truly appreciate the vote of confidence, though I had little thought to what I was doing! I certainly did not think victory was assured and only out of stubbornness and the arrogance of never having lost did I go through with it and think I could possibly beat him on the first strike. I was basically gambling my life, and his if I was successful, on a single sword stroke as Guts did against Zodd (or so he told me). Unfortunately, his strength and skill completely rendered mine moot and he not only broke my sword but had the control, strength and presence of mind to stop his before cutting me down. As you can tell from my expression at the time, I was just as surprised he could do that as anyone (as a matter of fact, I had to bathe and change my undergarments before I went to rape the princess). I understand it was ultimately an act of compassion and friendship, but that mercy only made it more humiliating for someone such as myself. Anyway, thank you for keeping the faith my friend, that is still my only loss as far as I am concerned... and as you say, mayhaps there was a defect in my sword after all... :griffnotevil:

-Griffith

:ganishka: Oh, don't be so modest, Griffith. We all know the only reason Guts won that fight was because you lost. Otherwise, you would have totally won!

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Podcast / Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 90
« on: September 04, 2017, 08:32:45 AM »
Amazing! You actually managed to get Void onto your podcast! THE Void! Eldest of the God Hand, brander of the Brand! He's always so stern and authoritative whenever he's on ceremony, but off the clock, he seems like such a cool dude. I mean, once you get past the big exposed brain, sewn-shut eyes, pealed-back lips, extremely long arms, six-fingered hands, gillion-foot-tall height, and creepy voice with the deep echo, I could see myself chatting him up at Starbucks.

Besides that, great podcast. This is something that Berserk has needed for a long time. If only this could be posted on every Berserk-related community.

I've seen a couple of misconceptions that weren't quite covered here, though they did admittedly overlap with some of the things that were discussed. Like how some people were of the mistaken opinion that Casca only ever loved Griffith and never really reciprocated Guts' feelings. Or how some have come to believe that Griffth really turned a new leaf after the Incarnation Ceremony.

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Movies, TV, Books & Music / Re: Game of Thrones TV [spoilers]
« on: August 28, 2017, 05:32:21 AM »
My thoughts about the Season 7 finale:

The Good: A lot of great scenes in this episode. I liked the meeting between enemies, Tyrion's tense and emotional conversation with Cersei, Theon's fist-fight with the Ironborne, Jaime finally being well and truly done with his sister, every little bit with Sandor, and of course, the big finisher at the end where the Wall comes crashing down. While it may look like I have more bad things to say than good things as you can see by the size of the paragraphs below, I did thoroughly enjoy this episode. The quality of writing has been steadily dropping, but hey, it's at least popcorn entertainment.

The Bad: This episode confirmed what I always, deep down, knew about Winterfell this season: that it was a tremendous waste of time. The only purpose of this whole subplot was to give Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner Arya, Sansa, and Bran something to do this season, and I use the term "do" very loosely, considering how little is actually done. It was always plodding slowly along compared to everything else, there was too much forced drama, the actors all seemed bored out of their skulls even though this should have been an emotional story. And what was it all for? To kill the most obvious snake in Westeros. Nobody liked Littlefinger, nobody trusted him, and nobody who mattered would have given a damn if he died. It should not have dragged on this long. Hell, the way Baelish was written and/or the way Gillen portrayed him never convinced me that he would have been able to get away with a fraction of the things he did, which made his death get more of an eye-rolling "Finally!" out of me, rather than a climatic "Payback's a bitch, bitch!" But at the end of the day...his death doesn't move anything forward. He's been irrelevant for a long time, and the White Walkers are still coming.

Sam's whole story for the past two seasons (or would it be two-and-a-half? three?) has also been rendered pointless. What did his journey to the Citadel accomplish? Did he become a maester? No. Did he learn any useful skills? No. Did he figure out anything that could help in the war against the White Walkers? No. All he did was find out a few key details, completely by happenstance, that allowed he and Bran to puzzle out Jon's full parentage. Something Bran should have been able to know anyway. He seems to know everything else, why would this slip under his radar? And I'm still having a hard time figuring out how this whole matter is going to contribute to the story's resolution. It honestly just feels like the writers are bragging about revealing one of the books' most prevailing mysteries before Martin gets a chance to. The only hope Sam has if he wants to have any meaningful role to play for the rest of the story is if he can glean something useful from the books he stole.

Jon and Daenerys have sex. Because that's what people do when they are in love. How are they in love? Beats the hell out of me.


The Ugly: Why is Cersei still alive? She should have been killed 4-5 episodes ago. Here we are, six episodes left in the whole series, and she's still around to waste precious time needed to wrap everything up and tell the story of the war against the Others. She should have died in dragonfire 4-5 episodes ago. She should never have posed a challenge to Daenerys. She shouldn't even have a stable rule, considering what she did to get the throne, and how hated she was.

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Manga Mausoleum / Re: Coolest moment in ALL of Berserk ?
« on: August 22, 2017, 09:09:00 PM »
Guts' battle with Rosine. Specifically that moment when...

[Looks up and sees rockvoanjd's post]

Oh...nevermind!

Okay, I guess a close second would be the finale of Guts' fight with Mozgus. Guts is on the ropes, nothing he does can even scratch the maniac, he doesn't know what to do...then he notices something. A chink in Mozgus' armor. He moves forward, takes a savage beating, gets thrown face-first into the masonry. Mozgus gears up to finish him off, but Guts only smirks and taunts the zealot, ending with: "Your faith might be your weakness, but on the other hand, it's where you're most vulnerable." And that's when we see the cavity in Mozgus' chest, where he keeps the remains of the Scripture, is filled with bombs. BOOM! They explode, blasting a hole open in Mozgus' chest@! And as the inquisitor is rearing back in pain, Guts takes advantage of the opportunity and attacks, striking the wound again and again and again. And just before he impales the beast on his sword, he lets out this awesome line: "If you see God, you tell him this: Leave me the hell alone!" Oooh, gets me every time I read it!

What it leads into is also really cool as far as spectacle goes. Guts flings Mozgus off the tower before the latter uses his final moments to immolate them both, sending his body crashing down in front of the crowd of refugees, now nothing more than a burning corpse. As the people look on in stunned silence, unable to comprehend what just happened to the one they thought was their savior, a child says: "Mother...the angel died." The mother screams. And then...


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Berserk Merchandise / Re: Displaying Berserk Art & Merchandise
« on: August 10, 2017, 06:16:04 PM »
Got a little bored at work today, so decided to doodle a Incubus on my hard hat. Until the Safety Manager complains, it's staying. Might even color it

That is just so wrong that it's awesome!

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Podcast / Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 89
« on: August 04, 2017, 06:27:36 PM »
Thanks everyone! As always people like the re-reads way more than I initially thought. I'd like to get on a quicker pace for them, but real-life often gets in the way.  :farnese:

I've been considering changing something about the re-read format, but would love some input from listeners. The page-by-page nature of these is what takes time. What if we continued rotating narrators between eps, but instead of going page-by-page, we talked summarily about our impressions and observations about the episodes?  The high points, as it were. I'm thinking about how most people must absorb these. Without having the volume in hand, going along page-by-page with the re-read, I'm not sure what the function of going over each panel is, since we can't really describe the art. Thoughts?

For the re-reads and new episode discussions, I usually follow along with the manga in my hand. However, this means I have to pour all my attention into the re-read, and while that might be fine to me personally, I don't imagine it is for those who would rather multitask (or multi-slack), listen to it in the car, or whatever. So a new format might be worth trying for that purpose. Rotating narrators is a good idea, particularly since it's nice to hear more from Grail, who's usually pretty quiet. One quibble I had with this most recent podcast, though, is that it felt like more of a summary to me at times, rather than a more serious analysis, but that just might be a natural consequence of going over the highlights rather than delving into the nitty-gritty details.

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Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: July 17, 2017, 09:02:10 PM »
Nier: Automata. I just finished my first playthrough (Ending A of like, 26). Really not impressed. I've heard I have to experience at least two more endings before I GET IT. So uh, I guess I'll do that? Seems like a very poorly constructed game, to me.

I wasn't impressed with it either when I completed Ending A. But people aren't lying when they say it takes the scenarios after that (to call them playthroughs is a bit of a misnomer) for the story to click. Of course, if the gameplay is leaving you cold, well, I can't say that's going to get better.

I think I'll be starting a round of Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines soon. Always did want to try out a Tremere.

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It's a cool picture, but I wouldn't look too deeply into it. It might bear a few superficial similarities, but I doubt Miura really planned the Falcon of Light that far ahead of time when he was just starting Berserk. As you even said, it's not a raptor, but a dove, and it's just a normal bird that Puck hitches a ride on as he's wont to do. At most, Miura might have gotten the idea to effectively recycle that particular imagery when it came time to draw the Falcon of Light.

If you wanted to attach some kind of symbolic meaning to that panel, I suppose you could say it represents how Puck is a small spark of light and innocence in the dark world that Guts is enveloped in.

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Berserk Anime / Re: 2017 Berserk TV Series (Season 2)
« on: July 08, 2017, 08:44:57 PM »
While we're talking about why the recent adaptation was total ass, i came across a youtube video that makes some good points about why it didnt work, and what would have worked better: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v6CJaChQ7rQ He makes the argument that the manga is a picturesque work, and they tried to adapt it as a dynamic work. Picturesque meaning its about the visual detail and not the motion in it. He argues that the 1997 anime and its style, colors, etc. were much more fitting. He also argued that the world of berserk is very gritty, grimy, and dirty, and cgi and 3d computer models are always very glossy and cant portray that grit.

The arguments are alright, but the guy seems to pussy out at the end, almost as though he's trying to seem objective in the eyes of the anime lovers. He spends the entire video criticizing the movies and 2016 series, only to turn around and start mocking people who dislike the animes for not doing the manga justice. Pot calling kettle black, dude. People have every reason to find all the series unsatisfactory, including the one from '97, and there is no reason to be thankful that Berserk has been animated so many times when nobody can get it right.

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Berserk Anime / Re: 2017 Berserk TV Series (Season 2)
« on: July 08, 2017, 04:27:24 AM »
I really hope more people on the inside speak up and describe what the royal fuck what went wrong in the second cour soon, because it looks like production was really falling apart at the seams by then. The shit that happened there should never have gone to print, and it should be held up as an example of what not to do in an anime production. Hearing their justifications for some of their baffling decisions on what to cut and what to keep, like why they thought omitting the Moonlight Boy of all things, would also be good for a laugh. Just don't try and make feel sorry for Itagaki or anyone else involved again.

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Berserk Anime / Re: Would you give studio 4C another chance?
« on: June 26, 2017, 05:51:07 PM »
No. They slashed too much material, robbed the characters of most of their depth, made changes that were completely unwarranted, and overused CGI that was terrible at worst and sub-par at best. And while the 2D animation could look nice, I really didn't dig the art style, what with Casca's whitewashing and Guts' pouty lips. Studio 4C did a poor job telling the story, they stripped out the heart and soul of Berserk, and they couldn't even provide spectacle.

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Berserk Anime / Re: 2017 Berserk TV Series (Season 2)
« on: June 24, 2017, 01:12:59 AM »
What They Say: The story continues...

What They Mean: Really, there's more story to be told! But we don't know if we can tell it anymore because nobody liked or watched our shit since we have no talent. So buy our Blu-rays so we can get another season going! Please, we're beggin you! Buy lots of them! Get them for your friends! Tell them the discs make good coasters! C'mon, we desperately need the money! Our careers are resting on this! Look, I know we did a terrible job, but if I don't bring in some real money soon, my wife's going to...oh, no! She's carrying a suitcase. She's walking out the door. My wife just left me. My parents have disowned me. I...don't have anything now. Just my job working for low-rent animation studio...and I'm terrible at it! I guess...I'm just gonna have to end it all. Goodbye, cruel world. Good–

BANG!

Oh. My. GOOOOD!!!!! MY EYYEEEEES! :isidro: :magni:

They're just not trying anymore, are they?

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Berserk Miscellaneous / Re: Berserk: The Flame Dragon Knight novel
« on: June 24, 2017, 01:04:06 AM »
Looking at these illustrations almost makes me forget my trepidation for the book. Almost. The illustrations are great, and it's fun to try and imagine what the story surrounding them could be. But I'm quite certain they're the best thing about it, and I'm still disappointed that this all has to be revealed to us in a novel written by a guy whose work so far has only filled me with white frothing rage. Best I can hope for is that it won't suck balls and that Miura will incorporate the story (or at least what worked in it, or what he envisioned it would be like) into the manga when the time is right. Or that he'll just ignore it and do his own thing, changing Grunbeld's history completely in the process. Either way, this had better be the last Berserk novel we see, as well as the definitive end for this merchandising push that's by and large only produced trash.

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Current Episodes / Re: Episode 351
« on: June 21, 2017, 05:19:43 AM »
Thanks for the translation, Puella. You work fast.

More neat and absolutely disgusting creatures. Millipedes are always cool, and I'm getting serious Wyald vibes from those...penis apes. But I find it especially interesting how much more of a clear and physical form they all have when compared to the shadowy and blob-like monstrosities encountered earlier. Even the landscape has a more defined shape with this forest of viscera. It seems Casca's mind gets progressively clearer around this specific memory, like this is what she's constantly dwelling on to expense of everything else. :sad:

I also just realized that if Schierke and Farnese were able to smuggle in the items they found in their respective dreams, among other things...then could it mean Farnese is carrying the Sylph Cloak, Dragon Slayer, and Berserker Armor as well? If so, things could get very cool or very scary soon.

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Current Episodes / Re: Episode 351
« on: June 20, 2017, 02:41:52 PM »
These nightmare demons are looking more and more disturbing. Those "pill bugs" are reminding me of Mara from Shin Megami Tensei, though they're likely based on Conrad with a a blend of this guy. Creepy either way.

I just hope that the continuation of the manga isn't meant to coincide with another lousy anime.

Whoa, didn't expect to see Mozgus, but it makes sense for Casca and Farnese of course, so we're getting some post-Eclipse action, and does that mean the dream defenses are becoming more personal (could a burned Flora show up :magni:) or is it just a coincidence?

I don't think it's post-Eclipse imagery we're seeing. I think the Mozgus we're seeing is Farnese using the "washing stone" from her dream.

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Berserk Anime / Re: 2017 Berserk TV Series (Season 2)
« on: June 16, 2017, 04:35:12 PM »
The Moonlight Boy is completely omitted. Who saves Guts then? Schierke.

:schierke:

Seems what little heart the studios had making this shit stain they think is an adaptation just isn't there anymore. I notice a number of people on Reddit are speculating that it's a sign that the series won't be getting another season. I really, really, really hope that's true.

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Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: June 13, 2017, 03:26:13 PM »
Finished my game of Demon's Souls. Learned why the Pure Bladestone can go fuck itself the hard way.

Ugh, that made me regret making my first character Dexterity-based. Pissed me off so much, I restarted with a mage.

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Current Episodes / Re: Episode 350
« on: May 23, 2017, 08:23:27 PM »
Things seem like they're moving briskly now, but it's just the calm before the storm. The real trial awaits within the mountain. Stay strong, girls. :sad:

Seeing the Casca sprite speak got me emotional. Sure, it's just a piece of her overall psyche, but it's almost like we're witnessing her say her first words in forever. And the fact that she wants so desperately to see Guts is...after reading so many hairbrained predictions over the years, that she's going to hate Guts and immediately flock back to Griffith, and getting into so many bitter arguments about it, to see how wrong they all were is...vindicating. I'm not naive enough to believe things will be hunky-dory when all is said and done, but I think it says volumes when the most important figure in Casca's mind (and hell, the most prominent person in her memory) is Guts.

Watching a flustered Farnese cover a protesting Schierke's eyes for the love scene was funny, but what kills me is how even the dog is looking a little sheepish in that panel.

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Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: May 20, 2017, 05:42:50 AM »
Recently beat the first Nier after having it sitting around for years and then Nier Automata the sequel. Really enjoyed both a ton, especially the music. The way Nier blended gameplay mechanics/genres was cool but clunky at times and Nier:A greatly improved on that, thanks to Platinum developing the combat this time around, but was a bit too easy. Overall though they're both really worth playing and probably some of my favorites of their respective console generations.

Now, by "beat," do you mean that you played through them once, or through all the requisite times needed to see all the endings? Because from what I understand (I haven't played either, though I do plan to pick up Automata, so correct me if I'm wrong), in order to get the full experience, you have to replay them multiple times. Something in the story changes each time, as does the ending, and the first Nier in particular is rather infamous for what its "final" ending does.

And sorry to hear you got robbed.

22
Video Games / Re: What Are You Playing?
« on: May 19, 2017, 06:50:03 PM »
Been playing Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir. I played the original about eight years ago on the PS2, and while it had some decent ideas, its combat mechanics were pretty cumbersome, the whole thing was grossly repetitive in how you kept on running through the same levels and fighting the same bosses over and over again, and it ran on far longer than it had any right to. This new version is...still repetitive and could have benefited from some serious pruning, but the combat is a hell of a lot better now, and feels more like a 2D Devil May Cry, which can make up for some of its deficits. And it's goddamn gorgeous in HD.

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Artwork like that deserves to be attached to a better product. Like another fold-out piece for the manga.

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One thing that's caught my attention is that the BBC and Netflix is apparently going to air a four-part miniseries based on Watership Down sometime this year. Though I have to admit, there's talk of toning it down for children that's making me leery. As is the fact that it's a CG cartoon. Most still struggle to animate fur properly, and when your entire cast is covered ear to toe in the stuff, it's really not something you can afford to screw up on.

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Manga Mausoleum / Re: Volume 39 release
« on: May 13, 2017, 06:21:29 PM »
196 pages according to Amazon.jp.

Hmmm...Volume 39 is currently running at about 141 pages, which means there's 55 pages left to go, maybe less if things like the title page or the table of contents count. Mathematically, we could surmise that this volume could contain three more episodes for a total of 10...but we've only got two more months to go before v39 is released.

Eight episodes would be a conservative guess. Nine if they release e351 in both Young Animal and the volume real close to one another or on the same day. Or maybe, and this is the overly optimistic guess: we could have three more episodes to look forward to in v39 (and at least three more this year), and we might get two episodes in June.

EDIT--

And Aaz just ninja'd my attempt to correct this post. :iva:

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