Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Time To Crush My Enemies Is Now

If you have been following my tweets and blog posts you might have noticed that I have been trying to play my PS3 more. To that end I recently picked up Super Street Fighter IV Arcade Edition. I watched it a few times on YouTube and figured it was worth checking out, though the last time I played Street Fighter seriously was Alpha.


The game is pretty cool though it does take a bit of getting used to with all the juggles and crossovers and a dozen other terms that I am only now starting to grasp. The main issue with playing is not the game itself it is those PS3 controllers they are really not conducive to this type of fighting game.


That weird missing inside piece of the PS3 makes all the difference and makes doing motion moves, like a fireball (which is Down to Down/Forward to Forward and press a button) a bit of a challenge. It can be done but not reliably as with other simple controllers I have used (not arcade sticks).

So after some research I found a copy of one of the best fighting controllers EVER for sale and I thought I would try it. Granted it is only a knockoff so the quality is in doubt but if it is only half as reliable then it should be ok as it will only be used for one game. Here are the pictures of the original and the knockoff.


The controller is of reasonable quality and the price is pretty cheap at around £9. My next problem is trying to map out the buttons to see how they work on Street Fighter which I will probably write down on my next blog because my goodness I would have liked to find it online. If you're looking for the controller a quick amazon or ebay search for "Saturn USB PC controller".

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Book Review: ILLUSION by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Illusion by Sherrilyn Kenyon is a 2014 YA novel which forms part of the Dark Hunter Universe of books. It is the fifth book in the Chronicles of Nick series and was released on 1 April 2014.

THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR THE BOOK.

PLOT

Nick Gautier is tired of his destiny. He doesn't want to be the son of a demon who's fated to end the world. Nor does he want to see another demon or other preternatural creature who wants to kill or enslave him. He just wants to be normal and have normal problems like everyone else. 


But normality isn't all it's cracked up to be. When he gets sucked into an alternate reality where his mother has married his mentor and his Atlantean god best friend has become a human geek, he begins to understand that no life is free of pain, and that every person has a specific place in the universe... Even the son of a hated demon. 

Most of all, he sees that his powers aren't the curse he thought they were, and that the world needs a champion, especially one its enemies can't imagine rising up to defend the ones he should destroy. 

Old enemies and new friends square off for a major battle that will either restore Nick to his real world, or end him forever.

WHY I BOUGHT IT

I loved the Chronicles of Nick from the first crazy book. It seems so unlike most YA out there nowadays probably primarily down to the male protagonist which is a serious rarity in recent YA. I have not read any of the other Shadow Hunter books as they are not really my preferred genre but the lore is rich and interesting.

WHAT I THOUGHT

The last book came with a lead in (preview) of Illusion and from what I read there I had graves concerns about this book. I like Nick with his powers after all it is a complement to that sarcasm which can sometimes be more than a little overwhelming. So this idea of a book set in an alternate reality with no powers and Nick scrambling to understand what happened. I was very worried that all of it would be spent with Nick cooling his heels and dealing with silly analogues.

I won’t say this is my favourite instalment of Chronicles of Nick but it was not as bad as the preview in the last book made it seem. The story is interesting though for me the first third dragged a bit but then things started to pick up nicely.

Important things happen to Nick in this book like his acceptance of his role as the Malachai which shows his ongoing growth, he has always been heroic and self-sacrificing but this acceptance of his role as the potential destroyer/saviour of the world is interesting as it seems to indicate that the only thing that will succeed in pushing him over the edge would be the death of his mother.

I still don’t like Nekoda to me at least she always comes across as a very bad match for Nick though I will state for the record that I’m not sure who he might belong with. We learn a lot more about her and the various connections to the other cast of characters in the Chronicles of Nick universe so if you’re a fan of her you should definitely enjoy all those new details. Caleb gets an almost cameo at the end of the book so if you’re a fan of his prepare to be a little disappointed by that hopefully the next book should do something to redress the balance.


I am definitely looking forward to the next instalment of Chronicles of Nick and I would definitely recommend this rather unique series to anyone who likes their lore and snappy dialogue.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

What's Going On


So good things are happening which is somewhat away from the norm but I'll take it.

These are some current links to stuff I think you should get out, what I did wrote:

Samaire Armstrong back on our screens so check out a gallery of her here

Did a great interview with a young woman using exercise to improve her life.

Other Stuff

Next month I will be attending training to get my First Aid certificate, not sure how much difference it is going to make the stinker of a time I have had scaring up interviews recently but every bit helps. April is also the beginning of Camp Nanowrimo which surprisingly seems to be similar to Nanowrimo so I signed up. Something that I hope will give me a little bit of focus.

As I'm cross promoting Samaire Armstrong I think she is worth a picture here.


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

This Week

So had Seetec Monthly today it was a pretty quiet affair other than the fact that from next month I will have a new advisor as in the word of my current one "her role is set to change". Not sure what to make of her changing role but I am anticipating a bit of push back from the new guy. He probably won't know that I didn't sign the data release. It might be fine though so I do not want to go in next time picking a fight.

In a few hours I am expecting a call from ICE as they want more information about my complaint. Mostly dates, a little difficult but not too hard to track down as issues tend to come up during monthly reviews and not in the hourly job search sessions. I will let you know what develops.

Other than job related stuff I have two new stories that I am trying to work on. One I have been working on for a couple of weeks set in another galaxy. I have always wanted to write about different worlds and different peoples I hope I don't screw it up.

That is all from me this blog is a quick one just to test the blog app on my newish phone. It could definitely help with blogging on the go.

Janel Parrish is there because she is gorgeous, that is why.

Friday, February 28, 2014

What Has Been Happening?

So I've been writing, I started a new story this time it is probably best described as a space adventure. Nothing like Mission Critical and horror of horrors I have decided to try writing in the first person. First impressions of that is it is very difficult and confusing but I write to get better.


Nothing has stirred on the job front in the last couple weeks which means no interviews on the horizon. That is as scary as it sounds but I have my application count up at 9 for this month and I am continuing to look ti is all I can do.

On the Seetec front things are slowly moving forward, just today I had a letter from ICE, Independent Case Examiner telling me about some letter they sent which I did not receive and apparently have done a turnaround and will consider my complaint to Seetec as I did get a final response from them which was worse than a joke.

Health stuff is a bit of a concern but hopefully I will get a doctor's appointment and move forward with that as it is going to take a lot of time and luck to sort out.

As you can see things are pretty quiet around here except for some new blog posts I have done so you feel free to check those out. My new blog is here comments are appreciated.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

FILM REVIEW: The Human Race

The Human Race is a 2014 horror film directed and written by Paul Hough. It is set to be released in the US on the 21 June 2014. The film stars Paul McCarthy-Boyington, Eddie McGee and Trista Robinson

PLOT 

Veronica suddenly finds herself in a surreal and horrifying marathon race. The rules are simple: If you are lapped, you die. If you step off the path, you die. Many will start but only one may cross the finish line alive.


WHY I WATCHED 

Trailer porn plain and simple. Those who often read my stuff know that as a rule I like to stay well away from trailers though that does mainly apply to trailers for TV episodes which only serve to ruin the interesting spins that happen more than you think on TV. I think I found this particular trailer when I clicked an embedded YouTube video somewhere.

WHAT I THOUGHT

I was confused at the beginning, which I blame on the trailer it leads into thinking this film is more straightforward than it actually is. Not being straightforward I think is a good thing especially given the subject matter and the film certainly holds your attention while you try to figure out exactly how things fit together.



The characters in this are an interesting bunch they are fleshed out enough that you start playing favourites despite yourself because describing most of these people as likable would be somewhat of a stretch. Still though by the time things really get cooking, most likely you will have one or two people you want to see more of if not someone you want to see survive. The Human Race does a lot with a little, proving effectively that when a film keeps things type the budget doesn’t have to spiral out of control.



The plot allows the film makers to keep things reasonably small but still with a wide enough scope that you don't feel the story is dragging or not going anywhere. I don’t want to go into the details of what happens suffice to say it is gory and poses the usual questions about what people outside of society, outside of normal rules will do when given the chance and the results are bloody. The Human Race is a horror film with an interesting twist and an engaging plot more than worth your time and certainly one for the horror fans to take note of even.

Friday, February 21, 2014

TV REVIEW: Star-Crossed Pilot Episode

Star Crossed is the new and very heavily trailed CW teen drama. The show premiered on 17th February 2014 in the US and stars Aimee Teegarden, Malese Jow and Chelsea Gilligan. The pilot episode was shown at last year’s San Diego Comic Con to mixed reviews. This review will contain minor spoilers from the pilot.

PLOT

About an epic romance between a human girl and an alien boy when he and eight others of his kind are integrated into a suburban high school 10 years after they landed on Earth and were consigned to an internment camp.

WHY I WATCHED

Malese Jow who I first saw as Anna in The Vampire Diaries is the reason I paid attention to this show back when it was known as Oxygen and was being paraded around in the run-up to Comic Con. I kept hearing about the show as she tweeted out details and behind the scenes photos.

WHAT I THOUGHT

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this, the problem with all the hype is that you get the major media outlets trying to pigeon hole a new show into something that viewers will understand, as if we viewers have absolutely no imagination. One of those pigeon holes that stuck out to me and almost sent me to the hospital with an eye rolling injury was that Star Crossed was a “Romeo & Juliet” tale featuring an alien boy and a human girl, this was indeed somewhat accurate it could be argued but I think that sells things short.



I can only hope that there will be a decent amount of plot time dedicated to the differences between the culture, like West Side story but with less singing perhaps. On a more serious note the performances so far have been pretty good, I know it was just the pilot but I’m optimistic that they are going to keep it at this level. I have to make special mention of Malese Jow who has at least in the pilot the most emotional range to work through as her character contemplates her own mortality.



As for the rest of the cast we have more placeholders than real characters as to be expected as this is only the pilot, we have the racist bully, queen bee and of course the competing love interest with a few actors that CW fans will recognise from other network shows. Those I know I think more than capable of bringing and some of the new ones I find intriguing, what can I say? I’m a sucker for a tough girl.


I am not sure where this will go, though the pilot does suggest something very close to war at least brewing after the fallout at the end of the episode. Furthermore, I am not sure about how this will fare in the endless chase for ratings but I for one am happy to watch as many episodes as CW choose to release.
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