30 September 2011
Hope you don't mind jumping topics a bit too much ^^;
It's less than 2 weeks before the release of Ace Combat: Assault Horizon on both PS3 and XBOX 360. Those planes in the screenshots really look do look pretty though, which makes me dazzled and stare at them like girls.
Su-34 "Fullback" with MiG-29 in the background
Inside the cockpit of Su-33
Skins of protagonist planes from previous games will be available too. For example Cipher's F-15C from Ace Combat Zero.
Ace Combat 5's Razgriz theme black F-14D Super Tomcat with Palm Jumeirah in the background
Su-37, the plane that made famous in Ace Combat 04 with an ace squadron serving as a recurring enemy throughout the game. Too bad it's a DLC (seriously DLCs are announced even before the game is released?! The same applies for the map Tokyo in the background which will also be a DLC for multiplayer...)
Tornado GR4. Another DLC
Winner of the skin design contest for F-15C "Death Rider" is also available as DLC, but this is free to download which is a good thing.
Fighter aircrafts are like the new girls for me today (wait what?).
But on a serious note, graphics really have come through a long way. Just look at this image from Ace Combat 2 that I have taken earlier this month, which was released way back in 1997.
Pretty planes are pretty, but let's hope that the game is good though. It has a lot to live up with the previous games in the series. Demo is available for download, and it seems a little scripted to me. I just hope that the new Close Range Assault is not a necessity to play through the majority of the game, but the final release may be against my wish. Well we shall see :o
29 September 2011
As part of the Jesta group build I am participating, here is a WIP post for the 3 Jestas I have bought nearly two weeks ago.
Beam carbines - piece of cake
Though it's a bit weird that these beam carbines are longer than most GM beam rifles, as technically carbines are supposed to be shortened versions of a rifle (of the same kind).
The heads. The original lighter blue on the helms look a bit too odd to me, so I have wanted to change the colour to something else. After a lot of thoughts I've simply decided to colour it black along with the antenna unit on the left hand side of the head. The black colour will need several layers to go over when I am confident with the overall colour layout.
The upper torso. I've coloured the edges of the chest vent to silver rather than the original light blue. This will apply to the vents on the legs and side skirts as well.
The shields have been coloured black on the bottom half, with the shield missiles coloured red. The red colour of the missiles is to be consistent with the missile colours of normal Jegan's shield missiles and Stark Jegan's anti-ship missiles mounted on shoulder.
And finally a quick bust comparison of GM III and Jesta.
Arms, legs, and lower torso have yet to be made, but hopefully I can get them done during the weekend.
That's it for the time being. This is most likely the only WIP post I would do and have a review post of some sort (like the one for the Dreissens) to roll out after the weekend.
25 September 2011
Image of 08th MS Team anime footage from one of my older posts
Despite that this blog talks a lot about toys and now and then news on anime or merchandise annoucements, I rarely talk about the anime themselves, or rather in this post, about me watching them in the first place.
I do watch anime, but not as much as I used to (around 5 years ago I think). Real life keeps me busy along with expanding hobbies (figures, Gunpla, games), and perhaps not knowing what series would suit me are what keeps me from watching more actively.
Blogger and artist Radiant Dreamer's mascot Melody, image taken from his blog
Though what has been keeping me at bay the most is probably the last one - not knowing what series will be something that I would like to watch. So far I have mostly stayed with the "safe" choices, like Gundam metaseries and perhaps what's popular out there and go with the flow, abeit I usually tend to avoid comedy or fluff series since they are not my cup of tea. If it's a series that may tickle my interest but not enough for me to start and follow it, then I'd wait until it's finished and listen to the feedback, though I often have the tendency to leave it n my backlog and procrastinate. And the anxiety of that what I anticipate may end up with a sour taste and make me wished I'd have used the time to watch something else (it makes me imagining myself stepping on an unknown ground that might be a potential treasure or a landmine). The observation with apparent increasing amount of fanservice has also put me off a bit, which I can see why there are a group of fans who yearn for the older series in the past decade or two, and don't like the changes that take lead nowadays, but that would be another topic to discuss on another day.
With Steins;Gate having just finished very recently and lots of people fanboying over Kurisu (aka Christina) or Mayuri (aka "Tutturu", a pet phrase that she often goes by), I thought I would give this a try while overhearing the deeper and darker parts of the plot (it's far too easy to get spoilers even while staying out of forums due to the availability of social network). And while I won't talk about how it is since reviewing anime is not something I am good at and I am not much of a thinker on this department, I can say that it has been a while since there has been a series that has put me to a natural smile at the end after watching it, perhaps since Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood has ended last year.
With a list of anime series announced for the coming Autumn season (or Fall if you prefer American English), I must say that it has been the first time since I have wanted to watch and follow more than 2 series at once. Yes I know a lot of people watch much more than me at once, but for me it's a first. While Fate/Zero and Shakugan no Shana III (read "Final") are in the list for the sake of completing what I have watched in previous series, the seemingly radical Gundam AGE and the reboot of Hunter x Hunter are also in my list, with the latter whose its original manga being the only long running manga series I still follow even now.
Then tonight out of the blue my sister asks me to start watching Dancouga Nova with her. A bit of a random thing, but since this is just a 12-episode series I guess it won't hurt to give it a shot. Besides super robot is not a genre that I have much experience on.
It's a bit of a random post, but let's say that this serves as a prologue of some sort for one of my other anime-related post - to be more precise the "My History with Anime", which is a project that Nopy has started some time ago. Hopefully with the Autumn season coming soon with a few series that I do plan to watch, this will give me a bit more motivation to finish up the post.
If you are really inquisitive on what I have watched so far you can always have a look at my anime list.
What is your view on recent anime? Do share out your thoughts!
17 September 2011
Bought 3 boxes of HGUC 1/144 Jesta today, which have been officially released two days ago. Fell in love with the design of these guys as soon as I first saw them, and I am pretty glad that the 1/144 gunpla kits are announced to be released much earlier than I have anticipated.
I will be taking part in the Jesta group build hosted by BMecha. I have never taken part in such event before, but this might be interesting to participate. I just hope that I won't feel too overwhelmed by others' high quality builds or creative mods out there ^^;
As for the 9 GM IIIs that I have bought earlier. The progress has been halted for now due to missing and damaged parts in (which I have only discovered while I was building them), and I am now waiting for replacement parts to come in. I haven't done much gunpla modelling recently, so it's time to brush up and get back into it after months of Ace Combat series (as mentioned in my recent post) ^^;
13 September 2011
Maybe the title for the post should have been "The Variations of Saber as of now"? ^^; Saber, Saber Alter, Saber Lily, and now there are more. Saber of Fate/Stay Night is known to have variations even from the beginning, but it looks like that we are getting more of her as the franchise expands.
The "default" Saber that most people are familiar with from Fate/Stay Night and other Fate games, whose identity is based on King Arthur. She is one of the main leads in the game, along with her master and male protagonist Emiya Shirou.
Saber from prequel Fate/Zero is the same Saber from the original game, but serving under a different master Emiya Kiritsugu (Emiya Shirou's father) and is sometimes seen wearing a black suit like in the scanned picture above.
Saber Alter is a dark variant from one of the branching arcs in the original game, where she has been consumed by darkness and is serving under a new master.
Saber Lily is an alternate costume of Saber featured in PS2 and PSP game Fate/unlimited Code. This gives Saber more of a feminine look compared to the original attire. Having first released as a figma action figure bundled with limited edition of the PS2 game, and later followed by static PVC figures and even a doll, this design has been very popular since its emergence despite having no storyline attached to it.
Saber Extra is a playable character from the PSP game Fate/Extra. She is a different character to the original one with different origin. I still find the partially transparent skirt of hers a bit strange. The sword, the Aestus Estus, does look pretty cool though. There is apparently another Saber in the game, but this one is a guy and is an antagonist in the game.
Saber Bride is the latest variation of Saber set to appear in upcoming Fate/Extra CCC game. A figma figure is being planned to go with the game, just like Saber Lily and Saber Extra.
We are getting more and more Saber variations, and it looks as if we are getting a new one every year. I worry whether we will start or have already felt that there are a bit too many out there, as if they are there for the sake of merchandising. Or maybe I am thinking too much there?
The number of variations for Saber so far starts to remind me of those for Black★Rock Shooter. We have that based on the original design, then followed by the game version (and that of a white version but as a separate character), as well as a Beast version. With a new TV series announced, we will very likely have a different version of her for it as well. Though what has been involved with BRS is a bit more "extreme" than Saber is having IMHO.
How do you feel about these new variations of the same character? Is it a good thing and a change of things for you, or that you find it tiring and that it's persuading people to spend more on the franchise?
10 September 2011
Just acquired the first three Ace Combat games from Yahoo! Auction Hong Kong today. They're second hand, but are still in pretty good shape. It's good to go retro now and then.
I've been playing the Ace Combat series this summer - pretty much since the PlayStation Network outage occured. These are no simulation game, but it's a great feeling to soar the sky and shoot the enemies out of it. Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War was the first game I've started, and fell really involved in it and bought the other games (04 and 5) shortly afterwards.
A test play on Ace Combat 2 just to be sure that the games are authentic and are still in good shape on my PS2:
Mission Accomplished! Hurrah to the retro PS1 graphics!
Sometimes I do feel nostalgic and longed for the old stuff like this. No wonder looks of people frown on the current games and anime these days and say how the stuff were better in the past.
4 September 2011
US Navy's ampihibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD-4) has paid a port visit in Hong Kong last week. I'd love to take some pictures myself, but I've come a day too late for it... OTL
The pictures in this post are from CYBERGUNDAM BLOG. The weather wasn't so brill in the past few days, but at least the photos look pretty good. It's not very often we get to see such visitors in Hong Kong!
The ship was moored next to the Ocean Terminal in Tsim Sha Tsui. There was no access to the ship under normal circumstances, but it was moored so close that one can easily take pictures of the ship along with aircrafts parked on the flight deck.
2 CH-53D Sea Stallion can be seen on the right, with a row of CH-46 Sea Knight on the left of the flight deck.
Rows of CH-46 Sea Knight on display.
A row of AH-1W SuperCobra on display.
A bluish RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile System can be seen towards the right. A large "4" can be seen on the side towards the left.
From left to right: UH-1N Twin Huey, AV-8B Harrier II, AH-1W SuperCobra, and CH-46 Sea Knight.
Ship crews can be seen on the lower deck.
Mk 38 25mm weapons system, which is the naval version of the M242 Bushmaster. Thanks Anonymous for the correction!
Hong Kong gets such ship visits now and then. The last one before Boxer was the USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) aircraft carrier. Some had gained access to it via some connections, and seeing pictures of people posing in front of aircrafts such as the Super Hornet makes me really jealous >_<
I still can't believe that I have missed the oppurtunity to see it; hope I'll get to see one another day!
All pictures are from CYBERGUNDAM BLOG