Not So Super Best Friends Forever

Why hello everyone, it’s been quite a while since I’ve updated this blog.

source: the nerd signal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And well, this caught my attention, when it cropped up on my Tumblr a few days ago. What is this? Let me explain

source: superman homepage

 

 

 

 

 

You see, there is/was a series of shorts developed by Lauren Faust who as most of us know is behind Friendship is Magic. She made these shorts under the series name of ‘Super Best Friends Forever’. Super Best Friends Forever featured Supergirl, Wonder Girl and Batgirl.

Notice, how all three characters are unique? They have unique faces, bodytypes and although you won’t know this from the image Wonder Girl has a distinctly Greek accent.

This had all the makings of a good take on a ‘Superheroes for Girls’ cartoon and with Lauren Faust behind it would have hopefully turned out like Friendship is Magic.

But then, this happened.

source: the nerd signalsource: the nerd signal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: The Nerd Signal

This is not directly the work of Warner Brothers/DC, it is the work of a company named Rubies who acquired the license to make costumes based around the concept.

And well, I feel they had a lot of potential with this idea but it fell short.

On the one hand the artwork is cute and the costumes are something that I wouldn’t mind a child of mine running around in but then they are just rather generic. And don’t really capture the character they represent.

Especially Supergirl, as her costume is meant to be similar to Superman’s instead here they just went for the ‘Pink’ look, and the fact all the costumes feature skirts even though in the case of Batgirl a skirt isn’t really practical wear.

And Wondergirls’ costume? To be fair without the headband and belt I would find it hard to match that up with the Wonderwoman look.

SBBF had uniqueness, which in many cartoons aimed at girls is something that’s lacking as even though they say change up the hairstyle and the clothes a lot of the characters come out looking the same. This is one reason I praise Monster High as if you look each character they are unique, this does extend to the dolls although certain things are not as noticable.

And this isn’t even touching on the issue that Rubies version of Wondergirl has been whitewashed when in the SBBF she had noticably darker skin and a Greek accent. And the fact they all have the same bodytype when SBBF Supergirl has a noticably heavier build, why wouldn’t she, she is a female counterpart to Superman after all.

Thoughts On Mass Effect 3

I had intended to do a post like this a while back but as bad as it seems I’ve lacked motivation to work on this blog. Also, I feel the ‘dust has settled’ on this a bit. So be warned, spoilers ahead

Now, as a preface I haven’t personally finished my playthrough of Mass Effect 3 I was vaugley spoiled for the ending before starting and my older brother completed his playthrough.

Mass Effect 3 was a game I almost didn’t get to play. My brother and I had put in a preorder at Game for the N7 collectors edition but of course we didn’t forsee Game going under. But we managed to get it from Blockbuster. In a way I suppose I’m slightly ‘glad’ we didn’t fork out for the N7 edition in the end. Even if I did really want that art book.

For the majory of the game, Mass Effect 3 is awesome. It starts of pretty strong with the whole being thrown straight back into the fight thing like with Mass Effect 2. The game starts of pretty dramatically and the opening scenes are pretty damn heart wrenching and gave me a ‘reason to fight’ as it were as it really hits home how dire the siutation is.

Character wise the game is excellent as well. It’s been 6 months since you last saw your crew so it’s interesting to see how people have changed. One of the ones I really liked was Jack. I’d liked her in the second game and liked seeing how she had ‘matured’ between games somewhat.

I found the Normandy felt pretty empty in the game as although you meet your old crew only  a handful come back to the ship. I was impressed by Vega, at first from what I had heard and seen I thought he would have been a very annoying character but he wasn’t as bad as he seemed. Diane Allers I found tolerable but to be fair I only kept her for the sake of a War Asset.  This game really does pull out all the stops in the way of ‘player punches’ such as what happens to Thane and Mordin.

Romance wise, I was impressed. One of my main thoughts was ‘how would they handle it’. In my game I romanced Garrus and really liked how that romance turned out. Especially the Citadel scene, what can I say I’m a fangirl.

Everything was great until the last 10 or so minutes. Pre battle when you touch down on London you can really get that sense of ‘do or die’ you can tell humanity is pushed back, this is the last chance especially with details such as the radio chatter which I found really sobering when they read off things such as the casualty counts in the different zones.

For me, the game starts to fall apart once you hit the Conduit. The last scene with Anderson is perfect though, and for me that would have been the perfect end.

I have no problems with a ending where Shepherd has died but I do have a problem with the lack of closure. The last parts of the game where you have to ‘make the choice’ which essentially seems to be ‘what colour explosions do you want’ the game just seems to become really chaotic and confusing. We know the reapers are falling and we’ve won but then what? What’s with the tropical planet? Why is the Normandy legging it out of there? Did Shepherd survive? Did humanity survive? Is everyone now stuck in the Sol system forever?

I know it seems weird to dislike the game for the ending alone but it just makes me feel dissapointed. But I guess I’ll just have to wait for this DLC that may help the ending make more sense.

Mortality in Video Games or Why I like Assassin’s Creed So Much

Strange title I know but bare with me. This will all make sense, hopefully. Also, be warned if you have no played the whole series in question as this will most likley have a spoiler or two.

So today as I couldn’t really think of anything to do and I’d been meaning to do it for a while I decided to look up Assassin’s Creed: Embers. As a quick overview, this is a short (as in about 20 minute) animated film set after Revelations  to contiune a little bit of the Assassin’s Creed storyline. In this video Ezio has retired from being an assassin, has gotten married to Sofia and has two children and is living out his days in the Tuscan countryside.

It is also a film that shows Ezio’s death.

And that is what I wanted to talk about, death and mortality in general in video games. (Wow, that makes me sound rather morbid)

Although it would seem that death is a very common theme in games. Heck, it’s the main part in most they never really seem to actually hit on mortality. Sure you cut your way through eneimes, you die chances are you’ll respawn but mortality? Nah.

Assassin’s Creed is a series though that seems to highlight this. Asssassin’s Creed II where we first meet Ezio the first scene we see of him is his birth, it then skips 17 years to show him as a young man. And over the course of two more games we see him age and then finally we see him die in Embers. It’s an interesting series for that aspect as playing through the games we get to watch him mature. When it starts, Ezio is a young man, he is cocky, bold, atheltic and maybe just a tad immature. By the end of the game, he’s older and  a bit wiser.

Brotherhood comes around, Ezio is older and unlike his younger self he’s maybe just a bit calmer, less rage, less motivated by revenge he’s grown up between games and you can tell he’s getting older. Instead of just reskinning him to make him look older they make him act older. Revelations comes around and he’s aged even more and it shows. The once cocky teen is now a middle aged man, he moves slower is less motivated by revenge can control his emotions and he is tired and wanting to retire from his life as an assassin and put it behind him.

During Revelations we also find out about Altair instead of the game just leaving him as a never aging one time character. Like Ezio he goes from being young and arrogant to being older and wiser. Through the snapshots we recieve of Altair’s life we see him, we see him loose his wife, one of his children and see him disappear. Each time he comes back he’s older, a bit slower he reclaims his place as the mentor and works to rebuild the order but each time we can see him getting older, wanting a end to this. Until that last memory where we trace his last steps.

In Embers we see that Ezio is old, he’s got grey hair, wrinkles, moves slowly and wheezes. He is no longer physically fit in a way he is a shadow of his former self. We can tell it’s nearing his time and he knows as well as he says “I knew I wouldn’t have time to do everything but now I fear I don’t have time to do anything”.  And in those final scenes we see him slowly pass away in the middle of a Florentine market with his wife and daughter around him. Just before his passing we see a young man, chastising the women of Firenze a man who is very much like Ezio when we first meet him, in response Ezio states that the city is not the problem, but that the man himself is.

I think, that is what makes this series great. The fact that unlike many other the protagonist isn’t invincible and never aging that you get to follow them through their life story and ultimatley see their final moments. Not many games do that.

I will finish with this letter from the end of Embers:

“When I was a young man, I had liberty, but I did not see it. I had time, but I did not know it. And I had love, but I did not feel it. Many decades would pass before I understood the meaning of all three. And now, the twilight of my life, this understanding has passed into contentment.

Love, liberty, and time: once so disposable, are the fuels that drive me forward. And love, most especially, mio caro. For you, our children, our brothers and sisters. And for the vast and wonderful world that gave us life, and keeps us guessing. Endless affection, mio Sofia.

Forever yours,
Ezio Auditore.”

Gamer Fatigue

I think that’s what I’ve been suffering with over the summer holidays. I’ve had off at least a month from college which in theory should have meant plenty of gaming time but that is not so.

It’s no secret I love to game, I was introduced to computers at a very early age and remember ‘playing’ a few games when I was really young although I didn’t know what I was doing. But I’d say I became more interested in gaming in general a few years back and it’s ‘gone downhill’ from there so to speak.

So, despite the fact I’ve had plenty of free time to pursue my love of gaming I’ve not done much in that way at all. All I’ve done is one playthrough of DA: Awakening and Return to Ostagar.  I have at least one more DA:O playthrough I’d love to do, I have a half completed DA:2 playthrough as well. I was replaying AC: Brotherhood but stopped, I have Final Fantasy 13 starting at me from the shelf as I’ve barley touched it since I got it last year, Project Zero/Fatal Frame is looming over me, so is Sands of Time and, 2008 Prince of Persia, I should probably get back to Fallout New Vegas, Bayonetta is eluding me and so is Devil May Cry 4 and I also have Red Dead Redemption to Atend to as well as the orginal Fable.

Yet, I just can’t seem to bring myself to turn on the XBox put in a game and just play. I don’t feel like it, I can’t think what I should play or I put in a game and get bored in five minutes or get to a battle and go ‘screw it’ and turn the console off.

It’s strange, during term time I’m on the XBox a lot, and I mean a lot but when I actually have free time and could in theory spend most of my day gaming I don’t feel so inclined. I have no idea how to break this cycle, there’s a couple of games I’d like to get and play and gaming on a different console however is not an option currently as both consoles (A Wii and ps2) are hidden somewhere in the basement and getting into there is a challenge befitting of Indiana Jones.

I just hope I overcome this fatigue soon. I kind of miss the Xbox.

Looking Ahead…

Okay I can now safly say it’s 2011. And so I guess it’s about time I make some sort of year in review post.

Now starts what I think is my third or fourth year of collecting. This year I think though was my first year of being a ‘proper’ collector as in I made a want list and started to focus on tracking ponies down online more than just finding random ones from charity shops and bootfairs.

My herd defiently grew this year, no idea of the total number but I know I now have over 100 ponies. I got some pretty nice deals this year, and I also had a few really good bootfair hauls. I got to go to UK Ponycon and spent the most I’ve ever spent on ponies in one shot. I got quite a few ponies from my wantlist, including Barnacle, Tex, Wigwam, Nightglider, Stripes, Streaky, Fizzy and Galaxy

And in Non pony stuff, last year I got to meet Roger Craig Smith, aka the voice of Ezio from Assassin’s Creed, he signed my copy of AC II.

So I’m looking forward to the year ahead.

Resoulutions and Goals?

  • Get through my pony backlog
  • Try to keep a track of how much I’m spending on ponies
  • Try to get Princess Silverswirl, Princess Ivy, G1 Twilight (the unicorn), Baby Paws, Baby Ribbs, Teddy, Puff and Eve

May the Force be With You, Young Padawan…

Okay I know I’m late to the party as it were but as a fellow girl geek I can’t go without posting about this.
Katie- An Ordinary Story with an Extraordinary Response

Most of us have heard the story about 7 year old Katie, the little girl who was bullied in school over liking Star Wars as it was ‘only for boys’ and of the reaction of the internet at large who came out in their legions to support her.

I’m a Star Wars fan too, but I didn’t get ‘into’ it until a few years back when I finally decided to watch the films properly and realised they were good. But I was bullied in primary school as well and just want to give my support to Katie as I know how it feels.

In school I was bullied because I was ‘weird’ why? Because when we all went into the ‘Juniors’ at Primary school nearly all the girls overnight bascially started liking stuff like pop music, makeup and boys, we weren’t even that old, probably about 7 or 8 and at that time I was still playing with my Barbies and my teddy bears and didn’t really know who any of these pop singers were, I didn’t read Goosebumps and the only makeup around was the stuff already on Barbie’s face. That made me ‘weird’ (the glasses probably didn’t help much and the fact I was so shy) so the girls wouldn’t talk to me, also I admit as a kid I was a bit of a crybaby and easily wound up so the boys used to pick on me too.

I remember also that I think in year 5 I remember going into the library, once a week we could go into the school’s little library and pick out a book to read for a while. One day I decided to pick up an Asterix comic as we had them for a while, apparently it was weird because ‘Asterix is for boys!’

Let’s just say that being in primary school in the juniors wasn’t exactly the happiest time of my life. I had little friends and just wasn’t happy in school and my teachers didn’t seem to do anything.

The support that she’s recieved has been phenomnal, so many of us have empathised with her and given her the much needed ‘it’s okay, you’re not weird’ that children so desperatley need at that age. (and I admit I occassionally have to remind myself of as a 18 year old)

So bascially to sum this up. Katie, you are not weird. You are a very special little girl, plenty of other girls like Star Wars. Be proud of who you are and may the Force be with you.

You’d Think People Would Learn to Read…

Okay, this is just a bit of a rant involving an incident I read about involving a friend of mine and Ebay.
Said friend sold a bait lot of ponies on Ebay, someone brought them and despite the fact the photo clearly showed the duplicates and said ‘BAIT’ the person had the gall to bascially say
‘these ponies are too damaged, I know they’re second hand but I expect some degree of usability and there are doubles, I want a refund’

FACEPALM!
You’d think someone bidding on a lot of ponies with ‘BAIT’ written about them would know it meant ‘these are intended for customs/restores and may not be in good condition’

Some people are just silly I guess.

Let’s see other, less annoyed pony news: My cosplay hat is done, I may actually be getting to the UK Con, I have a Tex coming my way in the post and I’m hopefully getting NSS Northstar soon.

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