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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Review This!'s LiveJournal:

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Friday, May 6th, 2005
12:52 am
[sailormoonchld]
Hey guys! Can you do me a small favor? Can you go to http://lineageone.com/en/node/1326 and Vote for the Meaning bloodpledge? The winner gets 4 free months of lineage and it would help A LOT if you could vote. :) Please and thank you!
Saturday, April 9th, 2005
12:42 pm
[son__pan]
Mahoujin Guruguru

Anime


Title: Mahoujin Guruguru


Genre: Fantasy, Adventure,
RPG, Comedy, Spoof


Episodes: 45


Format watched: .AVI
fansubs by Anime-Keep.


 

Mahoujin Guruguru


I can't believe I watched the whole thing!

I first heard about Mahoujin Guruguru a loooong time ago. It was apparently a popular manga in Japan that spoofed RPGs, all about a hero, a magic user and their spirit guide. I saw pictures, and it looked SD-cute. Unfortunately, as popular as it was in Japan, there was next to no information about it on the net. I just stuck it in the back of my mind, and forgot about it for a while.

Then Kenny suddenly showed me one of the pictures I'd seen, and said something about it (I forget what). I recognized it, and said I'd like to see it. Then Kenny found Anime-Keep's fansubs. You rock Kenny! According to my records I started watching the series on the 14th of September, 2004. This means I've been downloading and watching the 45 .avi fansubs for 7 months -- over half a year! Amazing... Anyway, let's begin...

First of all the characters. To start them off there's Nike (pronounced the Japanese way, aka 'Nee-kay'). He's one of the two main characters, and is the first to actually be in the story. He's 13 years old, and basically like every other boy his age. Except for the fact that his father's obsessed with him becoming a hero, of course. Nike has been through training pretty much since he was born, so he's actually somewhat skilled (although you wouldn't ever guess that). He's extremely lazy, somewhat perverted at times, and doesn't pay attention to what's going on. That said, he isn't the standard dumb-swordsman either.

Nike is the 'hero of legend', as everyone says. He's a 'Light Elemental', which means he uses the power of nature (while Dark Elementals use the power of the supernatural). Everyone calls Nike 'Yusha-sama', aka 'Mr Hero'. I don't think many people in the series call him Nike at all, to be honest.

In the first episode Nike meets the next major character, Kukuri. Kukuri is the last of the Migu Migu, a race of Dark Magic Users. She was given to the Witch in Nike's village by her father, who died soon afterwards. The Witch raised Kukuri, and used the spellbook left by her father to teach her 'Guruguru', the type of Dark Magic Migu Migu use. Unfortunately, Kukuri was more interested in becoming a princess (or something else ridiculous) than a magic user, and gave the Old Witch a lot of trouble.

Kukuri went through training though, and eventually learned some basic Guruguru. Guruguru magic involves drawing a magic circle on the ground, which is like an alternative to chanting spells. The magic circle contains symbols which act the same way the chant would, identifying where the power will be summoned from. Guruguru is dangerous, however, because if you put the wrong symbol in a circle, power will be summoned from...somewhere else. In other words, when a spell fails, you don't know what is going to appear. And unfortunately for Nike, Kukuri has a bad memory and often forgets the symbols...

The next 'main' character the two meet is 'Mr Udberg', but they always call him 'Kita Kita Oyaji' (aka the Kita Kita Dancer, Kita Kita Old Guy, or just Old Man). This old guy was once the mayor of one of the first towns Nike and Kukuri visit. This town was famous for the Kita Kita Dance, a dance performed by young girls wearing grass skirts and such. Unfortunately, a curse on their town stopped girls from being born, and eventually there was no one to do the dance. The crowds got restless...so being the responsible mayor Udberg was, he took it upon himself to keep the tradition of the dance alive. Yes... He donned the grass skirt...

As you can imagine, this caused some trouble. Would you want to see an old guy in a grass skirt wiggling his butt at you? I didn't think so. Plus, he has hairy old man legs! Despite all this, Kita Kita Oyaji actually does the dance perfectly, and put his heart and soul into learning and perfecting it. His purpose in the series is to find a successor, someone who will take up the dance after him. Unfortunately for him, the only girl in his village, Migu, absolutely refuses to watch him dance to learn herself. And so, Kita Kita Oyaji sets off on his journey -- somehow always ending up where Nike and Kukuri are, through some strange, Team Rocket style coincidence. "Please watch my dance! T-T!"

The final chacracter is Gipple. Gipple is a wind spirit, who guides Nike and Kukuri in their quest. Everyone thinks he looks pretty cute. That is, until his robe gets blown up, and you see the sumo-thong he insists on wearing. Gipple knows everything somehow (he's Navi, but less annoying). He can also transform into a tent for the party to sleep in, by expanding his robe. Of course, you get a horrible sight if you look up while inside...

Gipple is utterly useless in battle. Whenever danger appears, he poofs out. He'll re-appear sometime after the battle ends, usually. Gipple also hates mushy, corny, serious scenes. Whenever one happens, no matter where he is, he'll be blue faced and sweating. His most common quote is, 'someone please pass me the puke bucket!'

The story of Guruguru is incredibly simple. 300 years ago, an evil wizard called Giri tried to take over the world with his hordes of monsters. The kingdom Nike lives in stood up against him, and got their butts kicked. The king, in desperation, turned to the Migu Migu Tribe and their forbidden Dark Magic, Guruguru. Kukuri's ancestor used a powerful Guruguru spell to seal Giri away, and thus save the kingdom (who in my opinion are utterly ungrateful, as they outlaw Guruguru magic before the series starts). Unfortunately...the Guruguru spell used to seal Giri is only good for 300 years, and he has now returned. Because of this, the king calls for heroes to go defeat him -- hoping to find the legendary hero of...legend...

Nike and Kukuri visit the castle, and are somehow chosen out of all the heroes and magic users there. A special test involving manifest gas (a magic gas which can take the form of anything, like a solid illusion) proves that Nike is the hero of legend. Nike and Kukuri are given 500 rin (yay, money) and sent on their way. Of course, they blow all their money on stupid stuff as soon as they get outside. And so begins their journey to defeat Giri!

There are some 'to be continued' style episodes, especially early on and towards the end, but inbetween each episode is something like, 'Our town is plagued by monsters, please defeat them!'. Along the way Kukuri finds new Guruguru circles, hidden in pictures, flower arangements, pies, and other obscure places. Figuring out what these circles do is usually amusing. Nike also learns some new Light Elemental tricks along the way, such as the magical spirit sword 'Kira Kira' -- which is like a sword of light formed by a persons own energy, or the energy of something nearby. The funniest instance of this is where Nike accidentally formed a Kira Kira sword using Kita Kita Oyaji's spirit...

Guruguru was made in the mid 90s, but the style looks more like it was made in the 80s. The animation gets significantly better as the series progresses, but I think it was always pretty good. As I've said, all the characters are drawn in an SD style (making Nike and Kukuri look a lot younger than they actually are) -- although at moments when they're trying to be serious, they might be drawn normal. It's all very cute and colorful, with well designed fantasy settings.

I've only seen Guruguru in Japanese (which is probably a good thing), so I'll talk about their seiyuu. Nike and Kukuri each have very unique voices, unlike English dubs where voices are constantly re-used. Both suit them very well. The best voice in the whole series has to be Kita Kita Oyaji's, though. He can sound completely different depending on whether he's being serious or not. The other good voice is that of the narrator, who butts in now and then with random comments like, 'Yusha-sama was not paying attention'.

The music in Guruguru is quite simple at times, but very addictive in my opinion. I often find myself humming the background music. The first opening song, 'Magic of Love', was quite good too. However, the opening and closing themes change halfway through the series, and both the second opening and second ending are the best. I wish I could find them in .mp3 format!

In conclusion, as repetative as some of the jokes and plot lines are, Mahoujin Guruguru is one of my absolute favorite anime. RPG fans will most certainly love its whacky humor, and the way text boxes pop up now and then to explain a persons level, or what an item does. I won't give anything away, but, the ending isn't really an ending. It's very much like 'Oh well that's the end!' However, Guruguru is not over for me! There's still a 38 episode second series, which Anime-Keep should be fansubbing in the near future! Before that though, there is a short 30 minute long Guruguru movie, which I should be writing a review for soon.

Characters: 10
Story: 7
Animation: 7
Sound: 8
Music: 9

Review Score: 8.2 out of 10
Friday, March 25th, 2005
8:56 am
[son__pan]
Elfen Lied

Anime

Title: Elfen Lied
Genre: Action, Horror, Drama, Romance
Episodes: 13
Format watched: DVD

Elfen Lied


This anime has been out for a while, but I'd never taken a look at it. The first time I heard of it was in Newtype. The way it described it was, 'this girl who isn't quite human was in a research facility, but escaped. Now she's lost her memory/has split personalities, and goes from being an ultra-violent monster to being a cute clueless girl who says 'Nyu''. To be honest, this description didn't make me want to watch it. I've seen lots of anime with plots like that, and Elfen Lied didn't sound like it offered anything new. I mean, it sounded a lot like 3x3 Eyes to me!

A while ago I saw some screenshots from the anime on 4chan. Oh-my-God. Not much freaks me out anymore, but these screenshots were just so gore-filled... And it wasn't even that which surprised me. It was the fact that it didn't care who was being torn to pieces! Chibis, animals, whatever. Let me just say in advance, if extreme levels of gore, animal/child violence, and a bunch of other stuff offends/disturbs you, this is not the show for you.

The characters in this show are...mostly all likeable. Most of them have issues, but who doesn't?

To start with, there's Kouta. He's the main guy in the story. He moves to a town he used to visit when he was young, in order to attend a school there. Kouta's the standard anime nice guy, really. He thinks about girls and boobs and other things guys normally think about, but he's a good, honorable guy. He also has a terrible memory, and doesn't even remember his cousin. His father and sister died 8 years ago, and he hasn't seen his cousin since it happend.

His cousin, Yuka, also lives there, and helps him settle in. Kouta and Yuka were childhood friends, and Yuka has developed a crush on him. Cousins. Cousins!! Yuka has some issues. She's especially upset because Kouta doesn't remember her much, while she's been remembering him and wishing she could see him again for the 8 years he's been gone.

Then of course is Lucy. Or Nyu. Whichever you prefer. Lucy/Nyu is the main character really. She's what they call a 'Diclonius', a human born with horns. These Diclonius (the females anyway, not sure about the males) also have more than 2 arms, as it were. They look normal enough, but have multiple invisible arms they can release, called 'Vectors', which are like a form of telekinesis. These can be used to grab things, throw things, and tear people limb from limb. And believe me, that happens quite a bit.

Lucy is a psychopath. It isn't explained until later why she is, and I won't give it away, but she'll basically kill anyone who gets within her 2 meter range (that's how far her Vectors can extend). Then there's Nyu, Lucy's other personality. Nyu is cute, clueless and...cute. All she can say is 'Nyu' (how the Japanese say 'milk'), hence her name. She doesn't have a clue about Lucy, and doesn't even know how to use her Vectors. She's totally innocent and dependant on those around her.

The next character we meet is Mayu. She's a homeless girl who walks around with her pet dog, Wanta. The reason she's homeless is that she ran away after her stepfather sexually abused her and her Mother didn't care. Yeah... I think I'd run away too. I'm sure you're getting a general idea of how messed up this anime is -- but real life is just as bad, really. Man, that's depressing.

Mayu is a sweet and kind girl, who doesn't want to be a burden on anyone. She's quite shy and hesitant about people helping her, but gets better about it as the story goes on.

The final character worth mentioning is my favorite, Nana. Nana is a Diclonius like Lucy, only younger (about Mayu's age). Her Vectors aren't as strong as Lucy's, but can extend for about 6 meters, which makes her possibly more dangerous. She's also very sweet, and unlike most Diclonius, wouldn't ever consider killing anyone.

Unfortunately, Nana's life is an extremely difficult and tragic one. She's been raised in the facility where Lucy was kept, being subjected to torturous experiments. The only reason she hasn't gone crazy is because she considers the head of the facility her 'Papa'. Without that emotional attachment, she certainly wouldn't have lasted this long. Nana becomes involved in the story when they send her out to recover Lucy. This results in one of the best fights in the series, in my opinion. But...don't watch it if you have a weak stomach.

When you first hear about this show, I'm sure you'd think the story is very overdone. However, there are a lot of plot elements which make this series really unique. Flashbacks to 8 years in the past slowly explain what's actually going on, and why people act the way they do. I suppose in that way it's comparable to Stephen King's writing style. I won't give away any more than I already have, but I will say that the final revelation of what happend 8 years ago is absolutely shocking.

Elfen Lied has amazing animation. The character designs are a lot cuter than they were in the manga, and all are brightly colored and detailed. The island the characters live on is beautifully done, too. What I really like is the CGI Vectors. They look ghostly and move in quite a cool way, without looking totally out of place like some CGI effects. Also worth mentioning is the opening, which is based on paintings by Gustav Klimt. Very fancy.

I watched the show subbed, so I'll be talking about the Japanese voices. They all put a lot of emotion into their roles, as usual. Nyu's voice is extremely cute, while Lucy's (done by the same person obviously) seems quite old and mature, even when she was young. Nothing else worth mentioning here.

The music in this show is great. The opening is actually the song from a music box that Kouta owns, featured throughout the series. It's quite pretty and addictive. I find myself humming it now and then.

In conclusion, if you don't mind goresplodges, goresplodes and goresplats (all ã me), as well as child abuse (only a brief scene, not too bad) and animal violence (may put off a lot of animal lovers), you might just be messed up enough to enjoy this great series! Yay for you!

Characters: 9
Story: 8
Animation: 10
Sound: 9
Music: 9

Review Score: 9.0 out of 10
Saturday, October 23rd, 2004
12:29 pm
[mazokuxelloss]



Title: Hunter x Hunter: Greed Island (OVA 2)


Genre: Adventure/Action/Shounen


Length: 8 Episodes (30 min)


Format watched: .AVI (Only available fansubbed)

The second OVA is set just after the first OVA. Kurapica's mission is complete, or so he thinks as he recieves a disturbing call from someone.

Gon and Killua still have their mission though, to find Gon's dad. And the only clue they had to him as Greed Island, a super rare game. So they went to the auctions to seemingly attempt to win them, but they didn't have close to enough money. Gon had a plan though.

Gon would ask if he could play with whoever won. Help them clear the game. The man who bought it was called Battera. He had purchased every single one of the games at the auction. But he wouldn't let just anyone into the game, so they had to take a test. A man named Tsezugera who was a bounty hunter would test them. He told them to show him their Ren, and so they did. He said it wasn't what he wanted and they would have another chance though.

Gon and Killua were rather furious and began to train. Both developing special moves.

With these 'special moves' they would truely show their Ren, which really meant show me your power.

They both got the Okay to go into Greed Island, and they do so.

They quickly find out they're both out of their leagues once again inside the place, there are tons of dangerous people and they weren't 'polished' enough for them. But luckily for them Bisuke, a 57 year old girl who disguises herself as a young girl, was a master of Wing(Gon and Killua's master), and agreed to teach them more about nen.

...and That's the end.

Yes, that's right, the OVA ends with them training. Perhaps one of the worst endings to anything ever. Even some corny song went along as they trained, like it was some sorta final battle. But it wasn't, it was just the beggining, and it was already over!

Just like the Tv series and OVA 1 I think they should've combined OVA 2 and 3, instead of ending it half assed.

The music and sound were both up in this, and the cast of characters were all still very interesting. The animation was also up to OVA standards finally.

Characters: 10
Story: 6
Animation: 9
Sound: 9
Music: 9

Total: 8.6/10

Even though the story lacks here, it does have better animation and such to even things out a bit more.
Friday, October 22nd, 2004
5:03 pm
[mazokuxelloss]

Title: Hunter x Hunter (OVA 1)

Genre: Adventure/Action/Shounen

Length: 8 Episodes (30 min)

Format watched: .AVI (Only available fansubbed)

This OVA is the first of 3, which basically just continue off the Tv story which was left rather unfinished.

The first OVA is still in York Shin City like the end of the Tv series, it's still dark and eerie too as Kurapica is still the focus as well as the Genei Ryodan.

The animation really isn't up to an OVA's standards, although it's still decent it's only as good as the Tv series animation was.

Basically the same could go for the music and sounds, all the same. To me it was moreso left over episodes of the Tv series than an OVA.

But it was still good Hunter x Hunter action, if you liked the second half of the tv series you'll love this just as much.

The story ends a lot better here, basically ending Kurapica and Leorios story arcs and doing so well.

Characters: 10
Story: 9
Animation: 8
Sound: 8
Music: 9

Total: 8.8/10

Yes, same score as the tv series because well...it's basically more of the same. My reviews for the other OVA's will be a lot more indepth as I covered most of the Tv series story here, and nothing much changes.
Monday, October 18th, 2004
12:53 pm
[metaknight]
One of the most dried out Anime's out there, it's Crest of the Stars!
Title: Crest of the Stars
Genre: Sci-Fi/Drama/Adventure/War
Length: 13 OAV episodes.
Format watched: TV (I only watched 1 Episode of this Garbage)

Yes! To start off the Bad Anime review, I have a Gem of an Anime that is horrible! This would be Crest of the Stars. Now why this even got to TV, bewilders me. It is so dried out, it makes sand look moist. I first saw this on Tech TV, because I was bored and watching TV. So, I saw Crest of the Stars and was like "Hey, An Anime! Let's watch it!" Biggest mistake of my life.

Here's the story: Based on a sci-fi novel series, Crest of the Stars (Seikai no Monsho) is the first installment in this sci-fi saga. The story follows Jinto, a young prince, whose world was taken over by the largest Empire in the Galaxy: The Abh. Jinto's father handed their world over to the Abh in exchange for a standing in the Abh Empire. As a result, Jinto became a prince and was shipped off for an Abh Education. Later he meets a princess of the Abh Empire, Lafiel, whom he quickly befriends despite her cold exterior. The Abh empire is plunged into war and the story continues from there...

Anyways, in the episode I was watching, it was a whole bunch of ship floating through space and not even the biggest speck of anything was going on. They spoke so technical, I couldn't even follow along! It was so boring, I almost fell asleep. Then guess what! Something attacked! OMG! So, they had to rush Jinto and Lafiel off the ship and such. So they do that and blah blah, ship blows up, whoopie! So you'd think it gets better, right? WRONG! They showed a preview for the next episode which was all male fanservice so I was like "screw this!"

Characters: Oh my! They're so... common. Jinto is the typical guy prince, acts tough, talks a lot and whines. Lafiel is the typical silent, tough chick, who's crying on the inside, oh boo hoo!

Story: Floatin' in spaaaaace. Dodging war, who the hell knows, I certainly don't because it's GARBAGE!

Animation: It is nicely drawn, but not well done. The Ships were nicely done as well, but the animation they used did not suit it at all.

Sound: If you like the sound of space and the humming of machines, and the odd explosion or two.

Music: What music!? Oh yes, FLOATING IN SPACE! Greatest Music I've ever heard! Oh, and the sound of machines humming, I love to heard that music all the time! (Sarcasm).

This anime makes me want to burn it up, or beat it with a hammer. It's so dull! Seriously, the only reason it got onto Tech TV is because of the Ships, I swear, that is the only thing! Oh, it could probably be better, if I watched it in Subbed form. But the Dubbed is so horrible, I mean, this anime isn't even Toliet paper worthy!

Characters: 1
Story: 1
Animation: 3
Sound: 0
Music: 0

Total: 1/10

I want to vomit all over this anime it's so terrible.
Sunday, October 17th, 2004
10:10 am
[metaknight]
Sonic X: Season One!


Title: Sonic X
Genre: Sci-Fi/Comedy/Adventure
Length: 52 Episodes (30 min each, I watched the first 26 Episodes)
Format watched: .AVI

I first found this Anime on the DivX site I downloaded from. It was only the first Episode, but wanted to download it anyways. This was awhile ago, but I saw it and wanted to see the rest, because it was so nicely done. Later, I could have watched FoxBox on the Fox Channel every Saturday morning to see Sonic X in English, but I enjoy the Subbed more then the Dubbed. Anyways, this is probably one of my favorite animes.

It starts off with Sonic fighting Dr. Eggman in the world of Mobius. Dr. Eggman has control of all 7 Chaos Emeralds and captures Cream and Cheese. Sonic continues to pummel Dr. Eggman's robots into the ground, slowly making his way inside. Off in the distance, Tails, Amy and Knuckles are watching from afar, encouraging Sonic (Well, maybe not Knuckles). Anyways, Sonic gets inside and smashes against the Chaos Emerald containment machine, and damages it. Suddenly, all the Chaos Emeralds react and cause a huge Chaos Control. (Chaos Control is an ability first used by Shadow the Hedgehog in Sonic Adventure 2, but by using only one Chaos Emerald) The Chaos Control slowly swallows everything in light, Dr. Eggman, Sonic, Cream and Cheese, Rouge (Who Randomly Shows up), Shadow (Although we never see him in Season One), Tails, Amy, Knuckles and Big the Cat (Who never shows in Season One).

Suddenly, Sonic was dropped into another part of Mobius (Or so he thinks). He sees a city and decided to go there to figure out where he is. He zips over there only to find this isn't Mobius, where he landed on was Earth. Humans live in the city and spot Sonic, blinking in Disbelief at the Giant Blue Hedgehog. The Police arrive quickly and try to capture Sonic, but he has that name for a reason. He evades the police, even the Army, then they call in the Highway Police Specialists.

By this time, Sonic is racing down the highway, finally realising he's not in Mobius anymore. Then the Highway Police Specialists arrive. What makes the Highway Police so special? Well, they're a team made up of 5 Formula Racing Cars, Sam Speed is the Captain of the Highway Police. As the name implies, he's addicted to speed, so when the Police said that they're dealing with an incredibly fast animal, Sam Speed leapt to the chance to race it. So they chase Sonic, in hopes to capture him and bring him in for questioning. Sonic merely sees this as a challenge and speeds up even more. Finally, Sam has the bring out the big guns to his car, and brings out the Nitros. Yes, if Formula Racing cars weren't enough, they had to slap Nitros into them, anyways. Sam kicks in the Nitros and eventually keeps up with Sonic for awhile. Sonic glances over at Sam and gives him a big smirk, impressed that he can actually keep up, but then Sonic goes even faster, preforming a Sonic Boom*. Sam slides to a stop because the Nitros can't keep up and watches Sonic fly down the uncompleted highway. At the end, Sonic flies off into the air, getting an amazing view of the City. But suddenly, Gravity isn't his friend anymore, and Sonic plummets towards a Mansion's Pool.

The shot goes to a young boy sleeping in bed, who suddenly wakes up to the sound of a loud splash in his pool. He quickly gets up and runs outside to see what it was. While this happens, Sonic sinks to the bottom of the pool and bounces on the bottom. He leaps up and tries to run his way out of the water, but gets no where fast and gives up that idea. Suddenly, a splash comes from above as he looks up, a hand reaches down and grabs Sonic's, lifting him up to the surface and dragging him out of the pool. On the edge of the pool, the Boy rubs Sonic's back as Sonic coughs. Sonic closes his eyes, grins and thanks the young boy for helping him. The young boy blinks and doesn't believe that an animal is actually talking to him.
"You-You can actually talk!?" "Huh? Of course I can talk" "M-My name is Chris, Chris Thorndyke. What's your name?" "Sonic, Sonic the Hedgehog."

* What a Sonic Boom is, is what Jet's do just before Lift off. While firing up the Jet's Engines, it releases a blast of energy from it, which breaks the Sound Barrier. So basicly, Sonic Broke the Sound Barrier with a boost of energy from his run.

I love this anime so much, the characters are just so likable. And there are a lot of characters, pretty much all the ones from the Games: Sonic the Hedgehog, Miles 'Tails' Prower, Knuckles the Echidna, Amy Rose, Cream the Rabbit and Cheese the Chao. The Human characters are: Chris Thorndyke, Chuck Thorndyke, Mr. Tanaka, and Ella. The villians are: Dr. Eggman, Bocoe, Decoe, Rouge and a wide assortment of Dr. Eggman's robots. I was slightly disappointed that Shadow never appeared in Season One, but he will appear in Season Two, as well many more Characters from the game.

The Storyline is pretty straight forward. They're searching for the 7 Chaos Emeralds to get back home to Mobius, but Sonic or Dr. Eggman don't want to do that any time soon. But since the Anime isn't Storybased--It's Characterbased--it makes the anime so much better. It focuses mainly on Chris and Sonic, but other characters have had their own episodes. Most of the time, they're together. Dr. Eggman is so funny, he's quite an amuzing guy, he's more like the Dr. Eggman in the Animated Movie with Metal Sonic then the Comic Sonic.

Animation is amazing. Most of it is Drawn, but they're are 3D parts in it, such as the water, some of the effects, they even made a 3D Model of the X Tornado (A Ship Tails later builds). The Coloring is so well done on the characters, I think they just did a great job. Although in some of the episodes, you can tell they get a little sloppy and lazy. But it was near the end, so I guess they can do it sometimes if they want.

Music was also very well done. Most of the time you're paying attention to what the Character says, but you can tell the music really suits the mood. Although it kinda made me mad in the last episode they had a singing song in the middle of the anime. I was trying to focus on what was being said, but you could hear singing and it totaly threw you off, so it made me mad. I mean, it's good sometimes, as long as it doesn't interfear with the episode point.

The Sounds were nicely timed and done in this. Dr. Eggman cracks me up when he's bored and preparing to launch an attack against Sonic from his base. He sits in his chair and immitates the wave sounds crashing against the beach where his base is located. Then he snaps out of it and gets the job done. I love the sound Sonic makes when he turns into his ball form and crashes through robots. It sounds so neat.

Sometimes they had little things that annoyed me. Like later on in the episodes, they gave Knuckles Fingers to his gloves. His gloves don't have finger places, it's just a Solid Glove with spides on it, keep it right! Other then that, it's great.

Characters: 10
Story: 10
Animation: 10
Sound: 10
Music: 9 (You lost a point for the last song during the anime, it should have been the credit song, not the boss song, it totaly ruined it for soft playing music on a boss theme)

Total: 9.8

It's up there for one of my favorite animes. And be sure to keep watching for my Reivew on Sonic X: Season Two!
Friday, October 15th, 2004
10:36 pm
[mazokuxelloss]
The new obsession..

Title: Hunter x Hunter (Tv)

Genre: Adventure/Action/Shounen

Length: 62 Episodes (30 min)

Format watched: .AVI (Only available fansubbed)

The three shounen action animes that I'm so surprised havn't been licensed. Flame of Recca, Naruto, and this.It's also from the creator of Yu Yu Hakusho (Although I liked this a lot more than YYH)

This series revolves around a young curious boy who enjoyed adventuring out in his woods on his small in the middle of no where island. Very much like Goku from Dragonball, Gon (main characters name) loved to adventure and play with animals and overall have fun. He lived with his Grandpa and Aunt Mito. His parents both died before he got to know them at all really.

One day in the woods he was suddenly attacked by an angry animal, only to be saved by a Hunter. Hunter's are specialists of all kinds, they're above normal people in a noble kind of way, but they do all sorts of things. Some explore new worlds, some work on historical things, some fight badguys, some -are- badguys.

From this hunter named Kaito, Gon learns his father is alive and a famous hunter, saying the only way to meet his father he would have to become a hunter himself. Mito knew about his father and finally told Gon about him. So Gon set out to become a Hunter. But first he'd have to get there, in the first city he went to he met a smooth talking guy named Leorio. Gon helped Leorio in a few situations and Leorio did the same for Gon, they soon became friends.

Leorio also wanted to become a Hunter so he could become a doctor to save people, because his friend died from a strange disease and Leorio wanted to save as many people as he could.

So Leorio and Gon continue going toward the Hunter exams to become Hunters, where they meet a man named Kurapica, he was from the kuruta tribe and also wanted to become a Hunter. He wanted to become a Hunter so he could take revenge for his clan vs an organization called the Genei Ryodan(Phantom Brigade, The Spider, etc). When angered his eyes turned red and he gained immense power.

They all finally get to the Hunter exam and meet Killua there, a young boy who was extremly skilled at almost everything he did. They find out he's an assassin and he was bored, so entered the exam for fun.


But the hunter exam is only the beggining. During the exam the series is mostly light hearted and adventerous, very funny and enjoyable.

After it, and the Celestial Tower. The anime becomes much darker.

It's basic shounen plot, but it's not all about fighting and being the most powerful. Most the time the main character Gon isn't the strongest..infact..he never really is.

The end was pretty bad, just like most animes. It left a lot to be desired, but it all wraps up in the OAV, which I'll review later.

All in all I enjoyed the anime, I quickly bonded to the insane Hisoka character whos never really a badguy or goodguy. (Xelloss anyone?!) I definatly reccomend it to fans of the genre, it's not as good as Naruto, but it's still top notch.

Characters: 10
Story: 9
Animation: 8
Sound: 8
Music: 9

Total: 8.8/10

You can get it from Bittorrents on the net, unfortunatly the last eps are all stuck in a huge torrent (26-62), still a good anime for fans of Naruto, Dragonball, Shaman King, etc.
Tuesday, October 12th, 2004
2:34 pm
[mazokuxelloss]
Title: XIII
Genre: First Person Shooter
Length: Not really sure....it's not very long though.
Format: Playstation 2

I saw this FPS for sale for $20 and it had online capabilities for Ps2, so me and a friend picked it up so we could have an FPS and frag each other tons.

The multiplayer is fun, the cel shading graphics is a bit weird atfirst, but the comic book atmosphere works well with the overall fun game.

You start off on a beach, unsure of who you are, but you soon find yourself being attacked, and you have only one choice, fight back! You find out you have the abilities of an 'elite assassin' or something to that measure. Able to kill people with throwing knives, shotguns, handguns, and anything else you can find.

The games story isn't too great, no Tom Clancy, but it is there, and you can follow it, so I consider that a plus over games where it's just "Don't die."

It has the normal missions, kill everyone, save this guy, protect him. But none of them are very hard or aggrovating, which I found was a definate plus.

Besides the cel-shading it's just a normal FPs, nothing great to the table, but it is decently fun for it's price, and it's one of the few online FPS for PS2.

If you don't have a network adaptor, it may just be a rental. I didn't have any FPS in my ps2 library so I got this. Not the best compared to games like Timesplitters, and definatly not as good as PC shooters.

It's also available for GC, XBox, and PC. PC obviously being the best expirience.

Gameplay: 7
Story: 7
Replay Value: 8 (Multiplayer is fun)
Graphics: 7
Music: 4
Sound: 7
Total: 6.6 / 10

Nothing special, but not bad for it's price.
Saturday, October 9th, 2004
1:26 pm
[mazokuxelloss]
Exotic girlfriend goodness? Or horrible deja vu.

Title: DearS (Tv)
Genre: Sci-Fi/Exotic Girlfriend/Comedy
Length: 12 Episodes (30 min each)
Format watched: .AVI (Only available fansubbed)

I had watched Chobits about a month ago or so, and knew that this anime DearS was going to be similiar too it, but I had no idea how horribly similiar it is.

Another exotic girlfriend, this time it's about a strange alien race called "DearS" who seem to be obsessed with being peoples slaves, it's like their meaning in life. They fell from outer space as refugees of sorts and decidesd to stay on earth because they really had no way back. They were fast learners and learned most of japan's customs, languages, etc.

People were obsessed with them though, everyone wished they had a DearS and knew a DearS etc etc.(Perosoms anyone?) Our main character, Takeya, dislikes DearS and thinks they're gonna take over the earth. He doesn't know much about them though(Hideki...) because of his close minded state. Until one day he randomly finds one, Ren, laying in a bush, naked at that. (Chii!!11) And she ends up going back with him to his place. And keeps being naked because she doesn't get what the big deal is, each time Takeya freaks out about the nudity - even though earlier he had tons of porn mags spread throughout his room.

Not only is that much a copy, Takeya even has someone who kind of keeps him inline, similiar to Hideki's best friend who had Sumomo. The story and everything screams Chobits, Ren quickly learns Japanese but gets it often confused, she's like a super smart kid. And as the story goes on we learn that Ren is a special DearS etc etc.

The blatant ripoff was too much for me at times, I'm surprised they could get away with such a thing. But..I did nenjoy Chobits, so it wasn't too bad for me.

Characters: 8
Story: 3 (Too much of a ripoff of Chobits)
Animation: 8
Sound: 7
Music: 8

Total: 6.8/10

If you liked Chobits and wanted more, this anime is for you.
There is better exotic girlfriend anime out there. Oh my Goddess, and of course Chobits.
Thursday, October 7th, 2004
9:46 am
[son__pan]
Tenchi Forever

Anime Movie


Title: Tenchi Forever


Genre: Sci-fi/Romance/Drama


Length: 95 minutes


Format watched: DVD

Tenchi Forever


This is the third and final Tenchi Muyo film produced. While the second movie was obviously set in the OAV universe, this film was undoubtably set in the TV series, Tenchi Universe continuity. Unfortunately, I never really liked this continuity very much.

The characters are all here, as usual. In Tenchi Universe a few of the characters are slightly different. For instance, Ryoko wasn't created by Washu, and is just a space pirate. Washu isn't a Goddess, and seems a lot less powerful. Kiyone and Mihoshi are together in this series a lot more, meaning Mihoshi never really interacts with the others like she did in the OAVs.

The only new character to mention is Haruna. Haruna is a Juraian, and Yosho's first love. Unfortunately, because she wasn't royalty, Yosho was not allowed to marry her. Because of this, the two fled to Earth together. Yosho made it, but the long journey was too much for Haruna, and she passed away just before arriving there. Yosho planted her Jurai tree near the Masaki shrine, and spread its seeds everywhere he went over his life.

Haruna's spirit longed for the happy life she and Yosho had planned. Somehow, Haruna's spirit became disturbed (in part due to the fact that Yosho took a human wife, and had a child, Achika). Using the last of her trees energy, Haruna was able to instigate the main plot of the story, dragging Tenchi and the others into another adventure.

The story in this movie is far more dramatic than I'm used to in Tenchi. It's very serious, and there's very little humor. Basically, Ryoko and Ayeka are fighting one day, and Tenchi runs away when they try to get him to finally pick one of them over the other. Tenchi runs into the forest, and comes face to face with Haruna's tree. Haruna sees her chance to live the happy life she wanted, and before anyone can find him, Tenchi mysteriously vanishes.

The characters all go their seperate ways, in a joint effort to find Tenchi. Ryoko and Ayeka go out hunting him the old fasion way, with a little help from Washu's technology. Mihoshi and Kiyone go on a seperate mission for Washu, to help her hack into a piece of Science Academy machinery that will help her find him. Sasami returns to Jurai, and tries to use the Royal Trees to find him.

The characters all have high hopes that they'll eventually find him, but when Ryoko and Ayeka finally do, they find a lot more than they were expecting...

The animation style in this film is extremely different to the other movies. The characters are drawn in a completely different style, far more serious and closer to that of Tenchi in Tokyo. While the animation is very smooth and well done, I can't say I like this style very much... Also, the film seems less colorful than past ones.

Though a lot has changed, the dub voices are the same as ever. Haruna's voice acting is far better than Yuzuha's was, and there aren't many other minor characters really. Because of this, I don't have much more to say.

Like everything else in the film the music is quite serious. Also, the background music is nothing like any Tenchi I've ever seen before.

All in all, this is my least favorite Tenchi movie...or Tenchi anything for that matter. It just felt...very out of place. The story seemed to drag on, without anything really exciting happening. There are almost no fight scenes at all. Also, there's hardly any humor at all. This film is too serious for my tastes, and I'd only really suggest it to true Tenchi fans who'd watch it for no other reason but to see it (like I did, really).

Characters: 9
Story: 4
Animation: 8
Sound: 9
Music: 6

Review Score: 7.2 out of 10
Wednesday, October 6th, 2004
12:03 am
[son__pan]
Tenchi Muyo: Daughter of Darkness

Anime Movie


Title: Tenchi Muyo:
Daughter of Darkness


Genre:
Sci-fi/Romance/Comedy/Exotic Girlfriend


Length: 60 minutes


Format watched: DVD


 

Tenchi Muyo: Daughter of Darkness


The second of the 3 Tenchi Muyo movies. This film is definitely based on the Ryo-Ohki OAVs more than the first film was, and for that I have to give it some credit. The Ryo-Ohki series is the best of all the Tenchi continuities, in both its story and its characters. It was the original, and I think they should have stuck with it more than they did. This movie isn't the best of the Tenchi series, but it certainly isn't the worst.

The characters are all here once again. Tenchi, Ryoko, Ayeka, Sasami, Washu, Mihoshi and Ryo-Ohki, along with Tenchi's grandfather and father, Yosho and Nobuyuki, return once again for this action filled adventure.

This movie dwelves deeper into Yosho's past, showing part of his childhood on planet Jurai. It is rare that we really get to see Jurai, so this is a nice little treat in itself. Yosho is a Juraian prince, son of the Azusa, the King of Jurai, and Funaho, his first wife. Funaho was human, so Yosho is actually only half Juraian. Yosho was first in line to take the throne, but didn't want that possition, as being half human would have caused much controversy on Jurai.

When Ryoko attacked Jurai in an attempt to capture Tsunami for Kagato, Yosho used this as an excuse to pursue Ryoko across the galaxy, all the way to Earth. Once there, Yosho took up the possition of guard of the sealed Ryoko, and over time, took a wife for himself. Yosho's daughter Achika met Nobuyuki, and they had Tenchi. Even though Yosho is well over 700 years old, he hasn't actually aged at all. The old man everyone sees him as is nothing more than an illusion, created and sustained by his royal tree Funaho, named after his mother.

The funny thing about Juraians is that inbreeding seems to not only be okay for them, but produces more powerful offspring (what are they, Golden Chocobo?). Yosho has been on Earth for 700 years, and in this time has probably had several wives. Apparently, one of his marriages eventually lead to the birth of Nobuyuki, meaning that he, Achika and Nobuyuki are blood relatives! Because of the Juraians strange inbreeding rules, this might explain why Tenchi is so powerful.

A new character introduced in this movie is Yuzuha, the a demoness who inhabits a tree, which seems to be the opposite of Tsunami. Since Tsunami is a Goddess who took the form of a tree (and whos seeds started the Royal Family trees), my guess is that this 'anti-Tsunami' was an enemy Goddess in ancient times. Yuzuha and this tree inhabit a dark realm, where Yuzuha has absolute power, and Jurai power means squat. This strange demoness seems to have the power to transform people into strange gems, and for some reason has been seen eating them sometimes (oh my God, she's Buu).

The final new character to mention is the whole point of this story. Her name is Mayuka, and she is Tenchi's daughter. Mayuka basically shows up, having no memory, and knowing nothing except that Tenchi is her father. The group has many theories over where she came from, the obvious one being that she is from the future, and one of them must be the mother (she sure does act like a lot of them). The real proof that she is Tenchi's daughter comes when she creates a Lighthawk Wing, Tenchi's trademark ability.

It all starts out normally, Tenchi and the others doing chores and enjoying themselves as usual. Tenchi is walking down the steps from the Masaki shrine, heading home, when suddenly a blue haired girl appears. This girl is Mayuka, and instantly claims that Tenchi is her father, only she has no idea how she came to be here or where she's from.

The group react in different ways. Sasami is happy to have a new playmate (although Mayuka's a lot older than she is, in appearance), Tenchi's father is happy he has a grandaughter, and Ryoko is extremely untrusting and angry at how affectionate Mayuka is around Tenchi. The whole story revolves around the impact Mayuka has on this strange little family. Unfortunately, things don't stay happy for long, as it turns out there's something dangerous about Mayuka...

This story is reasonably good, but would be a lot better if Yuzuha's history had been kept secret till the end. Also, the story feels slightly rushed, not surprising since this movie is a full 35 minutes shorter than the first. Still, the characters are once again back how they were in the series, and I like that.

The animation in this movie doesn't live up to Tenchi Muyo: In Love, but is still good. The style is just like in the OAVs, more so than the first movie even -- only the animation itself is smoother and more fluid. The fight scenes are well animated, but would be better if they weren't so short and fast.

Once again I watched the dub, and once again I wasn't disapointed. Tenchi Muyo's dub cast still hasn't changed a bit, and is still one of the better dubs availible (although I may be biased). Unfortunately, Yuzuha's dub voice did not live up to the usual Tenchi Muyo goodness. Her voice sounds like Washu's, only if Washu had a bad cold. Actually, I wouldn't be surprised if they were done by the same actress. Mayuka's voice is fine, but could maybe do with a bit more emotion.

This film has the usual Tenchi Muyo background music. I remember the music for battles being better in the series, though... This films battle music was okay, but didn't really add much in my opinion. This is a rather minor point though, and the fact that this movie has one of my favorite Tenchi Muyo songs ever easily makes up for it.

What can I say? This is the second Tenchi movie, and it is also the second best Tenchi movie. Shorter than the original, quite obviously lower budget, but anyone who liked the story in the Ryo-Ohki OAVs will be happy to see Tenchi use his Lighthawk Wings again. Also, fans of Tenchi x Ryoko will be happy to see that their relationship developes a bit more in this movie, as well as Ryoko and Ayeka's friendship, slightly.

Characters: 10
Story: 8
Animation: 7
Sound: 8
Music: 8

Review Score: 8.2 out of 10
Tuesday, October 5th, 2004
12:38 pm
[son__pan]
Tenchi Muyo: In Love

Anime Movie


Title: Tenchi Muyo: In Love


Genre:
Sci-fi/Romance/Comedy/Exotic Girlfriend


Length: 95 minutes


Format watched: DVD


 

Tenchi Muyo: In Love


Most people who know me know that Tenchi Muyo was the second anime I saw, knowing that it was a Japanese show (so not counting things like Cities of Gold I watched as a kid). I caught the end of episode 1 early one morning on sci-fi channel, and instantly realized it was a Japanese anime. I had recently watched the entire series of Guyver, and I was interested in seeing more anime. From there, I managed to get hold of VHS copies of the Tenchi Muyo Ryo-Ohki DVDs, and ever since then Tenchi has been one of my favorite anime titles.

Tenchi Muyo: In Love if the first of 3 Tenchi movies, and easily the best. The funny thing about Tenchi Muyo is that it has many different continuities. The Ryo-Ohki OAVs are a different story to the TV series, Tenchi Universe. These also seem to be a totally different continuity to Tenchi in Tokyo, the third series. On top of this, there are also the two seperate series of Pretty Sammy, a spinoff, which not only have no ties to any of the other series', but also don't relate to eachother. This first Tenchi movie doesn't seem to be based specifically on any one series, but in this case it really doesn't seem to matter.

Another thing about Tenchi Muyo is that no matter what continuity it is, the characters never change personality wise. The star is Tenchi, of course -- the average schoolboy, who it turns out isn't quite so average, since his grandfather is an alien prince who came to Earth in pursuit of an evil monster, Ryoko, 700 years ago. Tenchi has learned the ways of Jurai swordsmanship from his grandfather, and with the help of a Jurai powered beam sword (also named Tenchi) can hold his own in a fight. Tenchi has a pure heart, and is kind to everyone, always giving people a chance. Unfortunately, Tenchi's indecisiveness leads to many girls pining over him, while he can't choose one, not wanting to hurt their feelings.

The next major character is Ryoko, the evil demon/space pirate. This spikey blue-haired menace was created by a mad scientist, Washu Hakubi, and has an asortment of powers. She can fly, phase through walls, teleport, create beam sabres with her bare hands, throw energy blasts, split into two, and with the help of some special gems which draw on Jurai power, she is even able to summon demons. Ryoko was used by Kagato, a student of Washu's who basically kidnapped his master and stole Ryoko, to breach planet Jurai's defenses and attempt to steal Tsunami, the Jurai Tree who spawned the royal family trees, the source of Jurai power. Yosho, Tenchi grandfather, chased Ryoko all the way to Earth, removed her gems, and sealed her in a cave. 700 years later, Tenchi accidently releases her. This would be a really bad thing, but it turns out that during her imprisonment, her astral body was able to roam around, and see Tenchi grow. Luckily for him (I think..) Ryoko had fallen in love with him.

Next came the first Princess of Jurai, Ayeka. Ayeka is kind of snooty, especially when they first meet her. She was meant to marry Yosho, but he left to fight Ryoko and never came back. Because of this, she searched for 700 years to find him, only to find Ryoko on Earth instead. One thing lead to another, and Ayeka ended up stranded on Earth. She eventually learned that Tenchi's grandfather was her Yosho, but by that time, had fallen in love with Tenchi herself. Ayeka and Ryoko are considered the main contenders for Tenchi's heart, and can be found fighting fiercly in any of the Tenchi continuities. However, when push comes to shove, Ayeka and Ryoko seem to have a...strange sort of friendship -- Ayeka going as far as going out of her way to rescue Ryoko one time.

When Ayeka became stranded on Earth, she wasn't alone. The second Princess of Jurai, Ayeka's sister, is Sasami. Sasami is young (708 if I remember correctly) and full of energy. She loves to cook and play with Ryo-Ohki, Ryoko's cute, fuzzy spaceship. On the outside she seems pretty normal, but in reality, when Sasami was even younger, she once died, falling to her death in the midst of Ryoko's attack on Jurai. She landed at the foot of Tsunami, the oldest Jurai tree. Tsunami felt sorry for Sasami, and 'assimilated' with her. Tsunami and Sasami are now considered spiritually joined, and when Sasami is old enough, they will become one. Sasami, and therefor, Tsunami also, have a great fondness for Tenchi -- even saying that when they're older they might become his bride. In a lot of ways Sasami might actually be the best choice for Tenchi...but their relationship seems more like close brother and sister.

My favorite character of all is Washu Hakubi, the mad scientist who taught Kagato and Dr Clay, and also created Ryoko and Ryo-Ohki. Washu too has a strong history. She has always been a genius, and was once a student of the Science Acadamy. There, she fell in love, and had a child with a man who's family was very prestigous. Little is known about this man, or their child, but one day his family took them away from her because she was a 'commoner' to them. From that moment on, Washu took on the form of a child, as she believed children didn't have to deal with social stature and such things. Washu has the strangest relationship with Tenchi yet. I wouldn't consider her a serious contender with Ryoko and Ayeka, but she has gone as far as trying to get...samples from Tenchi ("I have magic fingers!" "I don't care!!").

The group is pretty much completed by the two Galaxy Police detectives first class, Mihoshi and Kiyone. Mihoshi is a bubbly blonde, who has the strangest form of bad luck in the universe. Bad luck seriously seems to follow her around, but a form of dumb luck comes with it that seems to protect her from serious harm -- leaving everyone around her in danger usually. She crash landed on Earth a while back, and originally seemed to have a crush on Tenchi, but has let up slightly over time. Kiyone is Mihoshi's poor, poor partner, who is almost a nervous wreck from working with this girl. Kiyone is capable of great things, if Mihoshi wasn't constantly dragging her down. A funny thing is, Kiyone wasn't even in the Ryo-Ohki OAVs, except for one episode where Mihoshi told a story, which may or may not be true...

The final character to mention is original to this movie. The villainous energy being, who destroyed many planets, ships and is 'suspected' of murder (...) is no easy enemy to defeat. The only name they have for him is 'KAIN', and it is unknown why he's called that. KAIN has many powers, one of them being that he's totally immortal. His only weakness is Jurai Power, so the Jurai Fleet and the Galaxy Police were able to combine all their power to trap him in the Galaxy Police subspace network. However, 100 years later, he breaks free. KAIN is an incredibly intimidating villain, and makes this movie what it is, really.

This movie has a great story. It all starts when a strange energy-like being escapes from the Galaxy Police subspace network, destroying GP headquarters in the process. The being flies across the galaxy, and upon arriving on Earth, dissappears into a temporal rift. At that very moment, Tenchi mysteriously begins to vanish! In fact, he would have vanished from history completely, if it hadn't been for Washu's quick thinking, and geniusly designed temporal shields.

Washu reveals that something has happend in the past to Tenchi's mother, Achika. Because of this, Tenchi was never born, and because of this, all of their lives will be altered too. In order to save Tenchi, not to mention the world they know, the entire group has Washu send them back in time to 1970, when Tenchi's parents were still in school, to try to stop this strange being from doing something terrible to her. Unfortunately, they have no idea who they're up against, or when he will strike.

The animation in this particular movie is some of the best I've seen. It's somewhat like that of the Oh My Goddess movie, only older. Bright colors and beautiful backgrounds are used a lot, just like in the series. While the animation is smother and crisper, the character designs are exactly like the series, which I'm very thankful for. Also, the effects used for things like Tenchi's beam sword and other special attacks are very well done, possibly computer generated, but not blatantly.

I've always liked the Tenchi Muyo dub. It isn't perfect, but it's good and consistant. The dub voices haven't changed once in any series/movie, ever since the originals -- and you really grow attatched to them after that long. Ayeka may sound like a chipmunk, and Mihoshi's whining might just be a little too realistic, but I just can't bring myself to watched the subtitled version yet. The dub brings me nostalgia!

The movie has good music, most notably the background music. I especially like KAIN's ominus feeling. Other than that though there isn't really anything worth mentioning here.

In conclusion, this will always be one of my favorite anime movies. It has everything you could want. Action, romance, sci-fi, scary near unbeatable baddy, and most importantly, all the characters Tenchi fans have come to know a love. And it has Washu! That makes it perfect! I'd recommend this movie to anyone, and you don't have to be a fan of Tenchi to really enjoy it, but it sure would help.

Characters: 10
Story: 10
Animation: 9
Sound: 9
Music: 7

Review Score: 9 out of 10
Saturday, October 2nd, 2004
6:11 pm
[mazokuxelloss]
Sidescroller goodness

Title: Viewtiful Joe
Genre: Sidescroller/Action
Length: 10 hours including frustration
Format: Playstation 2

The first of two of Gamecubes gems (Tales of Syphonia is the other) that is being ported/was ported to the Playstation 2 has arrived! Viewtiful Joe, a game that's all about looks and gameplay, yet still 2-d and cel shaded at heart.

The game starts off with you and your gf watching the movies, and only you actually wanting to watch'em. Anyhow the badguy wins in the movie but then something weird happens, the badguy in the movie steals your gf! So you also enter this movie world to get her back, and to kick ass of course.

As you start the levels you find out you can dodge using up and down on the directional pad, this helps your VFX meeter for your super powers which you get along the first few levels.

One is slow motion, which is the most useful by far. Using this you can kick bullets and dodge -anything- aslong as you have enough VFX meter.

The next is fastforward or speed motion. It's mostly used for puzzle and easily beating early enemies. Overall I found it pretty useless

The last power is close-up motion. Where the camera zooms in on you and you get new abilities and damage people a lot. Couple this with slow-motion and it's a massive damage maker.

There are 7 levels and the first 5 are extremly easy. I only died a few times finding out patterns to bosses or just making stupid mistakes. Levels 6 and 7 are insanely difficult and took a while to beat, but nothing painstakkingly long. The ps2 version has Dante, I wasn't impressed.

The level design was fun but the puzzles felt pointless and mindnumbingly repetitive. Overall fun game though.

Definatly a rental because of how long it is. Not much replay value either.


Gameplay: 10
Story: 6
Replay Value: 5
Graphics: 8
Music: 7
Sound: 10
Total: 7.6
Sunday, September 26th, 2004
3:09 pm
[mazokuxelloss]
TRUE fist of the nose hairs!

Title: Bobobo~bo Bo~bobo
Genre: Comedy/Sci-Fi
Length: Not sure total..Only 5 have been fansubbed.
Format: .avi

Another insane no sense comedy series I enjoyed. It's more none sensical than Guu, but maybe not as random as Puni Puni Poemi, definatly rivals it though.

The plot is set early on. In the future a weird organization called the hair snatchers is..well..stealing everyones hair and ruining their 'parties'. During one of these hair raids, a pink haired girl named Beauty is almost attacked by one of the hair snatchers, only to be saved by Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo, our yellow afro'd hero. A deep voice and awesome presence it was a huge parody of Fist of the North Star, but it became clear quickly things were different from Bobobo-bo compared to Fist of the north star. For one thing, instead of fists and physicalities, Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo used his nose hair to battle. He'd use his nose hair in strange techniques and awesome "True Fist of the Nose Hair" style moves to defeat the hair snatchers.

Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo seems to have a plethora of mini-people inside his afro, and head, and nose, and armpits..and everywhere. Sometimes his afro will pop open and things like Graduating classes and J-rock groups will appear.

Beauty is the girl Bobobo-bo saved early on, and seems to be the only truely rational person of the series so far.

Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo runs into a weird sun with hands creature called Don Pachi, who is just as whacky and insane as Bobobo-bo.

The character cast isn't that endeeering but that's not what kinda anime this is.

The animation is okay, nothing special though. Some may be put off from the extreme whackiness and no sense plot but if you're into that. (As I am) it's nice to add to your collection.

UNFORTUNATLY - There's only 5 episodes subbed..and the series has been out for a while. Unless someone else subs it, or it somehow gets licensed. I may never get to see the rest of this funny series.

Animation: 8
Characters: 8
Story: 6
Sound: 8
Music: 5
Total Review: 7/10

Nothing revolutionary but if you're into the genre, it's good stuff.
Tuesday, August 31st, 2004
1:47 pm
[son__pan]
Techno Witches and Tea Parties

Interactive DVD

Title: Tea Society of a Witch

Genre: Romance/Comedy/Exotic Girlfriend

Length: A few hours to play through, but multiple endings

Format watched: DVD

Tea Society of a Witch


I saw an ad for this in Newtype once. It was a big page about the new 'interactive anime DVDs' that are being sold, and Tea Society was the one that jumped out at me. The character designs are incredibly cute, the the idea of the story is very appealing to someone like me, as it has aspects of techno-magic, something I've always found interesting. And an interactive DVD? At a convention once I met the people who made Advanced Warriors, a DVD movie where the watcher picked what happend next, and watched it play out. It's something that I actually wanted to do when I was in an amateur film class (but the tutor said it was too hard). My birthday was coming up, so I decided to order this and check it out.

It turns out Tea Society of a Witch wasn't exactly what I was expecting. I thought it would be an anime where you chose what the characters do next, and just sit back and watch. Unfortunately, it wasn't quite that original and interesting. All it is really is a dating sim you play on your DVD player. Still, I don't regret getting it one bit, and here's why.

For a start, the animation is absolutely wonderful. Everything is drawn so cutely and with nice colors, especially the characters. The whole game is basically seen through the main characters eyes, and there are many different locations which have been well drawn, seeming sort of 3D. I'm pretty sure they're at least partially computer generated. Animated sprites of the characters are then put ontop of that, which don't really move much, but are still nice to look at. There are tons of very cute looking still images which pop up during the game, but there is also a very nice animated opening sequence when you first load the DVD. Ah, if the whole game was like that, this'd be a 10 out of 10 for sure. The only thing I didn't like is that all the girls seem to have strangely enlarged thighs while you talk to them. They look fine in all the still pictures and stuff, but when they're standing against a background, why are their thighs so big?? Their skirts are barely able to cover them! ...Ahem.

As with most things I bother to review, the characters in this are the top reason for me liking it. The main character is a guy named Rokusuke, who you play as. He's somewhat of an idiot, and says stupid things that you know will make the game twice as hard for you to get through, but there ya go. The 3 techno-witches, as I call them, are Nee, Drill and Ponica. Nee is a hopeless dropout klutz, Drill is a spoiled rich girl, and Ponica is a young, quiet, Rei-Ayanamiesque genius. On top of them, you also have Megumi, Rokusuke's childhood friend; a spoiled rich guy, who lets Drill stay with him and is often a thorn in your side; a shy human girl who has a crush on you; and finally the witches tutors from the Magical Realm, Akiwo the Xelloss wannabe, and the Chairperson, who looks like a floating cat with a witches hat. All of these characters together make it a very interesting world to play in.

The story is quite simple. Humans and witches once lived together, witches trying to help humans. Then the humans got scared of them and did witch-hunts and burnings. The witches dispaired, and God created a seperate world for them to live in. That was hundreds of years ago, and now the witches come back for special training on Earth, they call 'Tea Parties', where the students have to live with humans and perform certain tasks. Nee, Drill and Ponica are here for their Tea Party, and need places to stay. Drill stays with the spoiled rich guy, Ponica stays with Megumi, and you're left stuck with Nee.

Basically, at the start of each day, you pick which girl you want to talk to out of the 3 availible. Nee and Drill are the first two, but surprisingly, Ponica isn't the third (too young to be a love interest, I guess. Or too quiet). The third is Manamu, the human girl with a crush on you. The game gives you a certain amount of days to get on with. Really, it seems pointless that you get to pick which character you talk to on any particular day, since the stories don't seem to influence eachother too much, and if you try to do more than one character you'll probably run out of days before getting anywhere. I focused on one character each time, and played till I got their endings. I won't give away their story lines, except for the fact that Nee's is the longest. Oh, and all 3 stories have sickeningly soppy endings.

Occasionally, little map screens pop up, showing where all the characters are standing. This reminds me of a Gameboy looking game, like Megaman.exe or something. During the game, you get decisions which in theory influence what happens in the story. Unfortunately, these choices are few and far between, and as far as I can tell, don't lead to many differences in the plot. You either get the happy ending, or you get a bad ending. I can't find an inbetween! Having said that though, in the games opening, and art book, and on sites online, there are pictures of Ponica, seemingly in her own story line. If that's really in the game, I really can't figure out how you get to see it. I'd like to, though, as I think Ponica's probably the best character of all.

This game is availible subtitled only (thank God), so all the voices are in Japanese. Nee's is high-pitched, and she tends to make annoying noises like 'Uwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!' now and then, but at least the seiyuu puts a lot of emotion into it. Manamu's voice is very quiet, and she usually takes a long time to finish saying a sentance, but I guess that's just how her character is. Drill is probably the most normal of the 3 availible. Ponica's very quiet and to the point, so I like her. Megumi's noisey, but quite normal Japanese girl sounding. Akiwo and the Chairman's voices are pretty normal, too -- although I think the chairman's voice reminds me of Onsokumaru (from 2 x 2 = Shinobuden).

I like the music for this game. The opening theme during the animated intro is very cute and fast paced. Each character seems to have their own theme, and there are different pieces of background music for different situations. You can call them 'sad music' and 'happy music' and 'OMG music'. Each of the 3 characters with endings have their own ending theme, too, which plays during the credits, along with pictures of things that have happend in the game. If I still had Kazaa, I'd definitely look for some of these themes.

All in all, this is an enjoyable game -- although I hear that others made by the same company are more in depth. It does take a while to play all the way through with a character, up to 4 hours I'd say, or maybe longer. Because of this, there is a password save feature. If you like dating sims and cute anime girls (so if you're like Piro/Fred from Megatokyo), then you should check out this DVD. Not the best gameplay, but a nice story and lovable characters.

Drill: "Ponica! You're heartless!"
Ponica: "Oh...in that case...I'll go home then..."
Drill: "Waaah! No! Come back and help me!"

Review Score: 8.6 out of 10
Animation: 9
Characters: 10
Story: 8
Sound: 7
Music: 9
Tuesday, July 6th, 2004
11:33 am
[metaknight]
Wild ARMS: Twilight Venom


Title: Wild ARMS: Twilight Venom (Or TV)
Genre: Fantasy/Adventure
Length: 11 Hours
Format: AVI (I watched it AVI), DVD (I believe) or VHS

I saw this when looking around http://www.animenfo.com/ . It started when I began to Download Wolf's Rain, but then I saw Wild ARMS and recollected that it was a game my friend liked, so I decided to Download it and watch it. It was ok.

The Story begins with Kiel Annorax, who was captured and sent to prison to be tortured because of a treason. When theives enter the Prison because the rumour of a valuable treasure, they turn the place upside down. These theives are: Loretta Oratorio--a Female Crest Card User*/Treasure Hunter--, Mirabelle Graceland--a Female Ampire (A Vampire who can go out during the day) and Jerusha, a Popepi Pipepo (They kind of look like Pikachus). Kiel escapes from his imprissionment and heads after the thieves because he actually knows what the treasure is. So they all meet up and head to the main room where the treasure was being kept. Once inside, the blow open the door to the treasure room to find...! A naked kid!? He wakes up with one HELL of a hang over and sees two beautiful women and immediately hits on them. They point out the fact that he's too young for them and he freaks out, exclaiming "Where's my Body!?" This young boy's name is Sheyenne Rainstorm. He claims that he's actually 25 years old and he' stuck in a young boy's body! Then they find this extrodinary gun called an 'ARMS'. Only those who are part of the 'Evil Race' can fire these guns, normal people cannot. When they do fire their guns, they use up there live vitials and eventually will die if used repeatively. It's a lot stronger then a bullet, since it uses energy from the life. They give the gun to Sheyenne and he can use it! Proving that he's part of the Evil Race. They evenatually escape and learn that Sheyenne's real body is being kept somewhere else far away. So then they start a quest for Sheyenne's real body!--Or atleast Kiel and Sheyenne. The other girls have some treasure to find!

* What Crest Cards are is magic spells. They have different spellls engraved on them and only a Crest Card User may use the magic inside. No real sorcerey in Wild ARMS, it's mostly technology.

I enjoyed the story to this one. It had a lot of twists and guess what... It wasn't all Male Fanservice! It had Female Fanserives as well! Lots of hot bishies in it... And butt shots... Naked ones... Mwahahahaha... Anyways, The ending was ok, a lot better then most animes I have seen.

The Artwork was well done, It was really enjoyable to watch. So many hot bishies... Mwaha...

The sound was very well done. All the characters sounded as they should and the voices for the monsters and gunshots and all that were nicely done. Even the sploding (Exploding) of some of the characters, splodging of blood and etc.

The Characters were great. Each one has their own personality, even some character change as the story goes along. I also discovered that the Main Character will ALWAYS lose his memory once in an anime! Always! Sheyenne does a little further on in the series, but he regains it, duh.

The Music was alright, they had proper music where it was suppose to be. Sometimes they had the annoying singing in the middle of the story and I was tempted to skip ahead and ignore it. Bleh, that always annoys me.

Overall the anime was decently done. Not the best anime to me, but I watched it due to the story and hotness factor (Bishies!). Actually, I liked it, but it's not one of my favorites. It's ok to watch if you've played the games--maybe I'd enjoy it more had I actually played the game. Oh well. It's still good in my book.

Animation: 10
Characters: 10
Story: 6
Sound: 7
Music: 7
Review Score: 8 out of 10.
Wednesday, June 2nd, 2004
1:04 pm
[mazokuxelloss]
Title: Jungle wa Itsumo Hale Nochi Guu
Genre: Comedy/Drama(Last 2 episodes, barely)
Length: 26 episodes
Format: .avi

This anime puts to shame the insanity of Puni Puni Poemi and Excel Saga, while the insanity factor isn't as high, the wittyness and layout of the comedy is sooo well done.

The story's about this little boy named Hale who lives in the jungle with his mother Weda. Weda is kinda lazy and drunk all the time and Hale does all the hard work for them. So Weda tells Hale to go pick some berries, and he runs into this giant monster that eats him.
He then imagines he's in this really weird place...suddenly he wakes up, and thinks it was all a dream. Weda brings home a little girl named Guu, who's acting all cute and happy. Hale takes immediate liking to her..atfirst. Suddenly her attitude totally changes and as does her appearence, she then becomes a deviant witty mean girl with omnipotent powers.
Guu's only wanting from then on - make Hale's life hell, but teach him along the way.

Guu is by far my favorite female character in anime, she's always causing trouble and making Hale scream like Shinji(Evangelion). It's quite amusing. =D

The animation is happy and exciting, almost to the point where it may turn off a lot of 'serious' anime watchers, putting it to the side thinking it's kiddish. It's definatly not kiddish, but it is stuffed full of japanese humor, I got most of it via anime's though..

Overall I find it to be the reigning king of comedy anime, a must to any comedy collection~

Animation: 9
Characters: 10
Story: 9
Sound: 10
Music: 10
Review Total: 9.6 / 10
Tuesday, May 18th, 2004
12:32 pm
[metaknight]
Tales of Eternia: The Anime!


Title: Tales of Eternia
Genre: Fantasy/Adventure/Male Fanservice
Length: 6 1/2 Hours
Format: AVI (I watched it AVI), DVD (I believe) or VHS

I saw pictures to this anime awhile ago, and then I saw the closing credits on a site, but since I could never get ahold of it, I never bothered. I don't regret watching this one.

The story is set when Reid, Farah, Keele and Meredy are set out on the journey to prevent the 'Grand Fall'. What the 'Grand Fall' is, is that Inferia and Celestia are getting closer, pulling themselves towards each other, then eventually colliding and destroying each other. Inferia is a continent on Earth and Celestia is a continent on another planet in space, which rivals the world basicly.

To watch this anime, you REALLY had to have played the game first to understand it! But anyway, back onto the series.

It takes place most of the time on this island, Velkanda Island I believe. They were marooned there after a battle with a Sea Demon and a Hurrican, so most of the 13 Episodes that place there. The first few are off the island. It makes some lovely references to the game which I love. Anyway, they're pretty much trying to find a way to get off the island and continue with journey, but then they find some interesting information on the Island. It's linked to the Celestians! Now the group must find a way off the island while trying to figure out the Islands mysteries.

I liked the story to it, but it was annoying that it was all based on the Island. I mean, if it got off the Island and showed the story of the game, it would have been so much better! Just short sum the game into the anime! It could work!

I LOVED the artwork for this anime. It was so cute and enjoyable. I especially think that Reid and Keele are uber-super hot.

The sound was ok, it just got slightly annoying when they kept yelling their attacks out. Course, they do that on the game, so I really can't complain. The voices suited everyone of them!

The Characters were enjoyable, but there were too many girls. And nudity. Not that you ever get to SEE the nudity, it hints. It's definatly a Male Fanservice anime.

The Music suited, but I never really payed attention to--UNTIL the last battle! They played the battle music from the game while they faught. I loved it.

Overall, awesome anime, but again, you have to have played the game to understand the storyline. They should have thrown Sekundes in there! SEKUNDES IS GOD!!! Actually, he's a Summoning Spirit of Time. The only other Summoning Spirit that comes close to Sekundes is Maxwell, who controls Space I believe. Both are Celestian Summoning Spirits. Definately kool! Now for the reveiw!

Animation: 10
Characters: 8
Story: 6
Sound: 8
Music: 9
Review Score: 8.2 out of 10
Thursday, March 11th, 2004
11:21 am
[mazokuxelloss]
Sonic...on Playstation 2?!
Title: Sonic Heroes
Genre: Platform/Action
Length: 4-5 hours per Team
Format: Playstation 2

Finall the little blue hedgehog is in my grasp to play once again! It's been a while since I had played one since I don't have a gamecube or dreamcast - so I was excited when I heard Sonic Heroes was gonna be on my playstation 2.

Well this one is a bit different from your other sonic games. You're put into teams of 3 which includes: Sonic Team: Sonic,Tails, Knuckles. Dark Team: Shadow, Rouge, Omega. Rose Team: Amy, Cream, Big. Chaotix Team: Espio, Charmy, Vector.

Each team has three kinds of characters - Speed character which of course runs fast and also has tracking jumps. Flying character which has a paralyzing shooting and the ability to fly. And a power character - which can break stuff and kick baddie ass. My only complaint here is the speed characters are too touchy at times and i'll find myself flying off the level trying to use them. Also the power character can do almost anything the speed character can. :/

Sonic has always been known for fantastic level design - once again the levels here are very creative and exciting. But they're all the same with each team! I couldn't even complete it a fourth or third time with Dark/Sonic teams because it was the same game as before!
There is a bit of replay value with getting A's and doing the secret missions and stuff - but they're honestly still the -same- levels.

On a last note - the ps2 version supposedly runs at a slower framerate then the gamecube and xbox versions - if you've never played those versions it won't be a problem. It's still the same game.

Gameplay: 7
Story: 6
Replay Value: 7
Graphics: 7
Music: 9
Sound: 9
Total: 7.5

Definatly rent it first if you're not a huge fan.
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