Thursday, December 5, 2019

Star Fox 2 Comes to Nintendo Switch!

Here's a little piece of unexpected news. Nintendo has announced the next wave of NES and SNES games coming to the Nintendo Switch's online membership service, and one of the games happens to be the "unreleased" Star Fox 2! This game was scheduled to come out near the end of the SNES's life, but was put off in favor of the upcoming Nintendo 64. This is what ultimately lead to the development of Star Fox 64, and why SF2 never saw the light of day officially -- that is until the SNES Classic was released. If you didn't manage to grab a SNES Classic however, then there was no official way to play Star Fox 2. But as already mentioned, this has now changed.

Along with SF2 also comes a handful of other games. These games have been outlined on Nintendo's Official Website as follows:
Super NES
  • Star Fox 2 – This 3D rail-shooter and second installment of the Star Fox series was first designed for Super NES, but went unreleased until it appeared on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System: Super NES Classic Edition system in 2017. This time, Emperor Andross is on a crusade to conquer the Lylat system and the Star Fox team itself. After a long wait, Star Fox is back in action.
  • Super Punch-Out!! – Featuring the tight gameplay and humor the series is known for, this sequel to the NES classic sees Little Mac return to the ring with the World Video Boxing Association belt once again at stake.
  • Kirby Super Star – That awful King Dedede is at it again – he’s stolen all the food in Dream Land. It’s up to Kirby to get it back and ultimately save Popstar from being taken over. There’s never a dull moment as Kirby dashes, flies and fights!
  • Breath of Fire II – Set 500 years after the original, take on the role of Ryu, the last member of the Dragon Clan. A cast of unusual and exciting companions join you in your adventures across a wondrous land full of magic and mystery.
  • Crystalis – An epic story for action-RPG fans is ready to unfold. Set in a world where civilization lies in ruins, the young protagonist awakes from cryogenic sleep and the adventure begins. Collect the Sword of Wind and venture into the unknown.
  • Journey to Silius – Join Jay on his run-and-gun mission to take down the mechanical army responsible for his father’s death. Defeat endless waves of attack robots and fulfill his father’s dream of developing a space colony in the Silius Solar System.

 For more information, also check out their newly released trailer:

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Persona 5 Royal - Coming March 31, 2020

I'm a bit behind on this one (blame Halo), but it has finally been announced! Persona 5 Royal will be coming to the west on 3/31/2020, and along with this announcement comes a new trailer! Check it out:

On top of the base game being released, a special collectors edition will be available as well. This includes the game in a steel book, an artbook, OST, a PS4 theme, and a Joker mask with a stand. It'll cost you an extra 30 bucks, but it might just be worth it for you die hard fans out there.

For those of you who missed what Persona 5 Royal is, check out my earlier post that explains things a bit better.

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Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Resident Evil 3 Has Been Leaked

Two pieces of news for you guys today. First of all earlier today the Resident Evil 3 remake leaked. While we haven't seen any footage, images for the title were uploaded to the PlayStation Store. Along with the base game also comes some sorta special edition, and the multiplayer spin off title "Resistance." Capcom has yet to say anything about all of this, but considering these come from PlayStation, it's only a matter of time before we get an official announcement.

Considering how popular the Resident Evil 2 remake was, it's only natural that Capcom would continue on with RE3. The engine is already there, the police station has been modeled, and the whole "enemy chasing you" thing was already programmed in because of Mr. X. In short a lot of the assets needed to do a RE3 remake were already available. Either way it's nice to see it officially. (Well, sorta officially.)

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Monday, December 2, 2019

Anime Monday - Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex

Yes!!!!! Thank you RNG! Man, last week there wasn't much I could say about the DMC anime, and now this week there's just TOO much! Of course I'll be holding myself back because of spoilers, and I'll also only be discussing Season 1 of this series in general. So yeah, let's get this started!

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex is one of my personal all time favorites. I've watched it from start to finish many times, and I'm really excited about the upcoming 3rd season. That being said, it wasn't always this way for me. In fact there was a time where I had no idea what GITS was, and I was even advised to stay away from it. Yep, that's right. I was told NOT to watch it. (Thankfully I didn't listen). As to how I eventually did come to the series? That's a bit of a long story, and strangely what lead me to it wasn't even directly related to the series. In fact it was Nintendo Power that started it all.

One day back during my freshman year of high school I was dropped off at my house by my mom, and she went off to work. This is how most days were back then, but on this particular day my new copy of Nintendo Power had arrived in the mail. "Free promo inside!" Okay, maybe not the exact words, but it was something along those lines. Usually when you saw something like this in Nintendo Power it was typically a game soundtrack sample, poster, or something else similar; however this time that was not the case. Instead the issue came with the first episode of a brand new anime called "IGPX." Now I had heard of this from commercials on TV, but I wasn't able to watch the first episode, nor did I think I'd even have a chance to get into the series. With this issue of Nintendo Power though, all of that changed.

The thing about IGPX is, it was actually a joint project between Toonami and the animation studio Production I.G. To sum it up, it was a sci-fi series about giant robots racing and fighting at high speeds. It followed different teams as they shot to become the best out there, and overall it was actually pretty cool! But I'll admit it was strange hearing "Sora" (Haley Joel Osment) cuss, but whatever. I loved the show, and maybe one day I'll get the chance to talk about it more. That being said though, it was a very overlooked series, and when advertised on TV they made sure to point out it was by the team behind Ghost in the Shell SAC. And there it was, the first time I had seen the name.

After hearing about GITS I began asking friends about it. One told me he heard about the Laughing Man, while another mentioned the nudity briefly seen in a few episodes, and told me it was a stupid adult show. While that didn't actually turn me off, the fact I had no way to watch it did prevent me from looking into it further. That is until roughly a year later when I caught clips of it on YouTube, and the series began reruns on Adult Swim. All I can say is, it was amazing.

The Story of Ghosts:

Stand Alone Complex is not the original Ghost in the Shell story line. The original was a manga, and it was adapted into two anime movies. SAC is not directly connected to any of these original stories though, and instead is very much it's own thing. It takes the characters and settings already established, and then expands them into a full blown story line that was told across roughly 50 episodes, a movie, and even some novels. It's because of this that many fans consider Stand Alone Complex to be "the" Ghost in the Shell, while the rest of the series is simply it's roots. Of course that's not to say the original isn't worth checking out, but it's nowhere near the scale of SAC. (Although the first movie did inspire the entire Matrix franchise.)

Like in the original series and movies, SAC follows the story of a young woman named Motoko Kusanagi, also known as "the Major."  The Major is the leader of a special police force called "Section 9," which specializes in cyber crimes and terrorist attacks. Following the orders of their chief, a man named Daisuke Aramaki, the Major leads her team in a wide verity of investigations as they try to get to the bottom of something they call "The Laughing Man Incident." Each episode tends to be it's own self contained story, but once in awhile small pieces of the overall plot will fall into place. It's an interesting setup that keeps the viewers guessing from start to finish, but there's also a lot more to it than what meets the eye. Even after the answer is finally revealed, there's plenty for the viewers to think about, which makes rewatching the series just as fun as the first time through. It's rare for series to be able to pull this sorta thing off, but Ghost in the Shell manages to do it with flying colors. But that's only one small part of the show.

Not all Ghosts are Machines:

One area SAC really excels in is it's character development. Each member of Section 9 is unique, and has their own backstory and role to play throughout the series. The Major herself stands out because her body is fully mechanical. She was in a major accident when she was a little girl, and was the only surviving member of her family. Sadly she lost who she was that day, but maybe that's not completely true? There's a lot going on with this story line, especially when looking at the psychological side of things. Is the Major still human? Is she still herself, or is she nothing more than a ghost in a hollow shell? The series explores ideas like this with multiple characters, but it's the Major's story that really does stand out among all the others. Even the haunting opening (sung by the amazing, and sadly late, Yoko Kanno) helps set the tone and gives us a glimpse of what she's dealing with. Her losing control of her hand and crushing her favorite doll -- it's things like this that make you feel sorry for the Major, but also make you feel uneasy. It's a bit creepy at times, but it's disturbing touches like these that help you feel for the characters and make them unforgettable. And again, this is really only the Major we're talking about here.

Other characters of the series have just as much depth. One character in particular is a man named Togusa. While the other characters in Section 9 are augmented or in full cyber bodies like the Major, Togusa is fully human. He does not believe it's right to mutilate your own body to gain advantages, and he has no plans to do so unless it's against his will. The one exception he made was the cyber brain implant so he could connect with others over a network, but it's more of a necessity in this world rather than a standard augment. That being said, he's limited compared to what other members of his group can do, and his choice of equipment is also considered "old school." In a world of sci-fi he seems like he doesn't fit in, but that doesn't mean he's any less of a cop. In fact he's one of the best Section 9 has to offer.

What's so interesting about Togusa's character is the fact that he's normal. If he gets shot he'll die, if his arm breaks there's no replacing it, and his Mateba Autorevolver provides a touch of our real world to the series. He also has a wife and daughter at home, and has much more to lose if things go wrong. He's also a bit more of a detective compared to other members of the team, and often gets sent on jobs more fitting of his skills. He's a great contrast to everyone else on the team, and a character who most viewers can relate to.

As for the rest of the team... Well, their stories do very. Some characters do get full episodes focusing on them and their past, while others are only seen developing in the here and now. Each one of them is interesting though, and it's always great to see just how they evolve as the series goes on. Of course just like with the major different issues are touched upon, and often we see even the modified characters trying to hang onto their humanity. Batou for example buys gym equipment and works out all the time, despite having a robotic body that will never change. The Major herself chooses to remain in a woman's body, despite male bodies typically being created stronger. And Saito -- well, let's leave that for an article about 2nd Gig. Sadly there isn't time in the first season to cover everyone, but they did an amazing job with what time they had. Oh and let's not forget the tachikoma units. These spider shaped tanks add comedy to an otherwise serious world, and they too question their existence. They aren't human, and their souls weren't created by God... So, what are they? Are they even truly alive? And then there's The Laughing Man...

I thought what I'd do was, I'd pretend I was one of those deaf-mutes:

That quote from The Catcher in the Rye. It's fitting.

As I mentioned before, SAC does follow an episodic format with most of it's cases, and it covers a wide verity of crimes. However The Laughing Man is the main focus of season 1, and it's something that gets brought up time and time again. Even when you don't expect him to be related to an episode, there is sometimes a hint hidden somewhere as to what is really going on. Overall it's a pretty cool mystery, and something that helps drive the series forward. Sadly I can't go into too much here due to spoilers, but I can say that the character will leave a lasting impression.

What makes The Laughing Man and his so called "incident" so interesting is that there's a lot people don't know about it. The original crime happened years before the start of SAC, and occurred during a news report. On a seemingly normal day a man wearing a hood held a man at gun point, and tried to force him to say something on live TV. The man refused however, and during the struggle he knocked the criminal's hood off "revealing" his face. This is when the world was first introduced to the now iconic "Laughing Man" logo with the famous quote "I thought what I'd do was, I'd pretend I was one of those deaf-mutes" circling around it. The moment his hood came off, the man hacked the TV network and every camera in the area, and covered his identity up with this symbol. At this point The Laughing Man then took off running, "never" to be seen again. After the crime happened police sketch artists came in to ask witnesses what the man looked like, but strangely every description came out the same. Instead of a man's face, all they could describe was the symbol.

Near the start of SAC The Laughing Man finally returns, and this time he's committing a series of new crimes. This is what leads Section 9 to finally investigate the case, but things aren't quite that simple. What The Laughing Man did then still remains a mystery, while his new crimes seem to be related to something else. Or are they? Where are the connections, and exactly how do they connect? Needless to say, just like everything else in SAC, the answer isn't so black and white.

Should You Watch It:

YES! I really shouldn't need to say more. While the animation is a little dated, and crime dramas might not be for everyone, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex is something everyone should at least give a shot. Even if your not a fan of anime, you shouldn't let that stop you from seeing this story. The characters, the themes, the setting, and everything else about it deserves your time. I really can't stress that more than enough. There's so much to GITS that entire papers can be written covering it's themes and ideas. Even the one off cases the characters have to solve are so much more than meets the eye, with questions being asked that are anything but easy to answer. What is right? What is wrong? Who should decide? Is it really okay to force your views on others? What is it that lead these people to where they are now? So many of the series' "villains' fall within this gray area, and often you won't know how to feel about them because of this. Especially some of the things brought up in 2nd Gig... But again, that's not what we're talking about here. This is whether or not you should check out season 1, and that answer is a definite yes. Seriously, go watch it.

Where to Watch:

I seriously hate saying this, but at this time your only option is to buy the series on DVD or Bluray. However Netflix currently has the rights to produce and release a 3rd season, so it's only a matter of time before season 1, 2nd Gig, and even the movie gets released. It was previously available on Hulu, but was removed shortly after Netflix acquired it. But even so, it's a series worth owning. Check it out when you get the chance.
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Sunday, December 1, 2019

How is Pokemon Sword and Shield Really?

When Pokemon Sword and Shield was announced people were excited. Finally we were getting a Pokemon console game that wasn't a spin off of the main series! It's something a lot of fans have been waiting many years for (myself included), and people had high hopes for it. Then came the announcement of Pokemon Home -- a service that allowed you to upload all of your Pokemon from nearly every entry in the series -- and once again people were excited. It was an evolution of the 3DS's Pokemon Bank, and it would even work with the mobile game Pokemon Go. Of course this would allow fans to send their Pokemon over to the new Switch games as well, and would allow casual players to keep their favorites, and let competitive players to keep using their already established teams. Then not long after... We found out we were wrong.

Turns out Sword and Shield would not feature all of the Pokemon from the past. It had a list of 400 that could be caught in game, and that was it. If a Pokemon was not available in the games themselves, then they did not exist in the data, thus could not be traded over. In other words, out of the close to 900 Pokemon in existence, the game only contains less than half. This did not set well with a lot of long time fans, and the news that followed didn't either.

So the game had many attacks removed. Dungeons/extra cave areas no longer exist. Models were reused from the 3DS games, textures weren't as high quality as a console game should've been, the game lags with pop in in the new 3D open map called "the wilds," and a whole list of other issues seemed to plague the game. It didn't make things any better when Game Freak told the world that they planned to release a new game yearly, and that Sword/Shield would not be receiving new Pokemon in updates -- those would come in the yearly releases. Needless to say, this also ticked fans off. But all of this was before the game released. How is it now?

What Sword and Shield is Really Like:

Let me just come out and say it. Sword/Shield isn't as bad as many would want you to believe. Yes it has a lot less content than past games, and you can't trade all of your favorites over to it. That's a major let down, but it's also not the end of the world. Being a long time fan myself, this is something I was already used to with the games. I wasn't a rich kid, and because of that I could only use what was given to me. In other words, I only had some of the 150 Pokemon in Red and Yellow, because I had no way of getting the rest. Even if I did get Blue version, how would I trade the exclusives over to Red or Yellow? Same with Gold and Silver. I owned both versions of it, but that didn't actually do me any good. Most of the original 151 could not be caught in the game, so I was forced to make due with the new Pokedex. Then came Ruby and Sapphire.

The GBA games were the start of something new. All of my hard work from the past was gone either way, and once again I was limited on what I could or couldn't use. Yes I owned the remake of Leaf Green to get some of the original generation, but again, how did that help me? With Sapphire I was stuck with whatever regional Pokemon there were, with the exception of some that I was able to get from the GameCube Games. I was used to this though, and to me that's just how Pokemon worked. Not once did it cross my mind that it might be possible to get all of them in a single game. That is until the DS generation.

Here's when this became a standard, and why it hurts so many that Sword/Shield doesn't allow it. Starting with Diamond/Pearl Game Freak added easy ways to trade your Pokemon over. The DS had a second slot to play GBA games, and if you had a Pokemon GBA game inserted you could use the in game transfer feature. This allowed you to send all of the Pokemon you caught in the previous generation over to D&P, and continue using your established teams. Sure there were requirements you had to meet before you could do this, but honestly Pokemon games never were the hardest to beat. With less than a day's work you could easily have everything you had back, plus much more. This is how things would continue for the DS generation, but with some hang ups.

While future DS games would allow you to continue trading your Pokemon over, you did need to have a second DS to do so. Considering Nintendo released multiple DS models during it's lifetime, it really wasn't that unheard of for people to have more than one. So while transferring between games during the GB and GBA days were a little less unheard of, it was a bit more common with the DS. (Although to be fair, the GBA did get the SP, Micro, and GB Player, but link cables were a little harder to come by and not as reliable.) That being said, many fans continued to trade up from game to game. Then came the 3DS games with Pokemon Bank to make things easier, and now here we are with Pokemon Home and Sword and Shield. It's just instead of continuing trading our Pokemon up, we're jumping back to how things were in the old days. Sorta.

Bottom line is, while it's something we are doing without now, it's not actually the first time. Just like during the start of the GBA games, Sword and Shield has a Pokedex of it's own, and we'll continue working our way up from there. This time however we're starting with 400 (technically 401) Pokemon rather than 200. Because of this Sword/Shield still has a lot of Pokemon for players to collect, so it's not like it's lacking in that department. Having 400 to actually catch without needing to trade up is a pretty large number, and this time around Pokemon and their evolutions aren't quite as straight forward.

As for the world... While it's true the game is much more linear without extra dungeon like areas to explore, it's still an adventure with many improvements made along the way. (The biggest of which being the Pokemon that appear on the field instead of as random encounters.) Along with the wilds area, where you can see other players in game, raid battles are a fun addition to the series, and they offer rare special Pokemon as rewards. Then you also have other multiplayer features that let you trade or battle others with a click of a button, or even get a random Pokemon in exchange for one of yours. It helps make it easier to "catch em all" this time around, and encourages you to work with other players to achieve that goal. Sadly the Global Trading Service is locked behind Pokemon Home for now, but it'll be out early next year.

Player customization is another feature that has returned from the previous entries, and it's still a nice option to have. Instead of everyone looking the same online, we all have the options to change our hair, clothes, and even face (to an extent). It's not a full blown character creator or anything, but it lets people stand out from one another, and make a character that is a bit more "theirs." This also extends to the trainer card where you can customize backgrounds, expressions on your face, and even pose. It's not a huge deal, but it's still a nice feature.

Battling hasn't changed. If you liked Pokemon before (or possibly TBRPGs in general), then you're still going to like it now. Yes the attack animations still aren't as expressive as Pokemon Stadium was back on the N64, but whatever. Laziness aside, it's still fun to play and doesn't hurt the game in any way. A bit disappointing they didn't do more, sure, but it's really not the end of the world. You have 401 Pokemon to work with here, which is plenty to keep things from getting old. (Heck we used to be happy with 151!) Mix in raid battles and online PvP, and you have hundreds of hours of playtime awaiting you. Not to mention the time it takes to breed and EV train your "perfect" team. That core part of Pokemon has not gone away, it's just now everyone is being forced to rethink their way of playing. Rather than trading up from the past, we are all starting on equal ground.

So, with all things said and done, Sword/Shield honestly isn't as bad as some might like you to believe. A let down in some areas? Sure. That's not a game killer though. What we currently have is fun on it's own, and will still last you many, MANY, hours. It would've been nice if Game Freak took more time with it, expanded the world, gave us the full Pokedex, etc, but what's done is done. If you can get past it's short comings, what you'll find is still a nice Pokemon adventure, and the start of what could be a very promising future on the Switch.
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Thursday, November 28, 2019

SD Gundam G Generation Cross Rays - Now Available on Steam

Over the past few years Bandai has slowly been bringing Gundam back to the west. Up until then most of the anime series have stayed in Japan with only subbed versions uploaded to, and the games have remained Japanese exclusive with no plans for English release. What was once popular in the US thanks to Toonami and even the SyFy channel, was now fading away. But then things changed.

A little over five years ago, Gundam began it's revival outside of Japan. The entire is currently being released on Bluray with multiple new releases each year, a few of the series have made their way back to Toonami, and even most of the popular streaming services have began showing them (Hulu even has a "Gundam" section). The series in general has been picking up steam, but it's still been struggling in the game department. Some of the better releases have come out in Asia with English subs as an option, but games translated for the west have been very hit or miss. (We pretend New Breaker never happened). That changes today though... (Or should I say last night?)

SD Gundam G Generation Cross Rays has officially released on Steam. While that may not mean much to a lot of people, it's the latest in a pretty popular Gundam sub series, and what many will consider one of the best Gundam games out there. Similar to the Super Robot Wars Series, the game is a turn based strategy RPG, where you create teams featuring characters and units across the Gundam series, and send them to battle against enemy units. (Think Fire Emblem, Disgaea, or Final Fantasy Tactics, but with giant robots.) While past games focused more on the UC (the main Gundam timeline), this one instead changes gears and focuses on the stand alone series Gundam SEED, Wing, 00, and Iron Blooded Orphans.

As for the story, it has you work your way through different key battles throughout these series' history. This means anyone who isn't familiar with the series already can jump in and play, but be aware that it will spoil the anime if you have plans of watching them. That being said, this game really is more for the long time fans, and definitely worth checking out. Assuming you like TRPGs that is.

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Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Black Friday Deals

It's almost that time of year again guys! Black Friday is just a few days away, but in the mean time quite a few deals have already gone live online. So to make things a bit easier for you, here are some quick links to what different stores have to offer. Just keep in mind that more deals will be added or possibly taken away as items sell out, so keep an eye out, and act quick if you find something you really want.

Walmart - A wide verity of items are on sell here (as it's Walmart), but they have quite a few games on sale as well. While it's actually better to go into a physical store, there are already some nice deals on the website.

Best Buy - Everything from video games, to TVs, to PCs, and accessories. Another good place to visit in person, but online sales are already up and running.

GameStop - GameStop has quite a few games discounted, with some being as much as 50% off.

Amazon - A lot is being discounted over at Amazon, but that's to be expected. Click on the video game icon at the top of the page for games, or whatever other department you'd like to shop under.

PlayStation Store - A little over 250 games on sale here. This includes a $15 and under section, and a discount on PlayStation Plus.

Xbox - 600 games on sale with this one. Some games are both for Xbox One and PC, so keep an eye out if you prefer your games on either.

Steam Sale - Just open up Steam and you're good to go. Hundreds of games have been discounted, and that most likely includes games on your wish list.

GOG Weekly Sale - While not labeled Black Friday, GOG has a sale going on for the next week. Worth checking out if you're a PC gamer.

EA Black Friday - EA has multiple games on sale across multiple platforms. By going to their website you can choose between PlayStation, Xbox, or their own Origin platform on PC.

Ubisoft - Another PC sale (although their games are appearing in other sales as well). This sale does extend past video games however, with other merchandise available as well.

And that about covers it. Of course many other stores are offering discounts as well, and I'm sure everyone has their favorites, but these are just some of the top ones you may want to check out. (Especially Amazon and Steam, but Walmart and Best Buy typically have nice deals as well.)

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Monday, November 25, 2019

Devil May Cry 3 Coming to Switch

This is strangely perfect timing for us. The Devil May Cry Anime was randomly chosen as this week's article, and Devil May Cry 3 just happened to be announced for the Switch as well!

This party's gettin' crazy! Devil May Cry 3 Special Edition is set to rock 'n roll onto Nintendo Switch on February 20, 2020 for just $19.99
 What more needs to be said? Eh, I guess a lot more.

DMC3 Special Edition is the "definitive" version of the game. Originally released on the PS2, it's a prequel to the entire series, and the game that defined what the series is today. It's the first time we got to see the crazy over the top Dante fans know and love, and it's often considered one of the best PS2 action games. While it isn't that shocking it's coming to the Switch (considering 1 and 2 were already released on it), but it is strange that they waited this long to do it. The full DMC collection has been out on other consoles for quite some time, so the Switch is a bit behind on this one. Even so that's no longer an issue now! Or at least in a few months it wont be.

If you haven't played the game yet for yourself, this is your chance. And if you want to learn more about the game though, check out the review I wrote last year. (And yes, I reused the same title image because I'm lazy.) I was one of those people who was late to the party, but it's better late than never.
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Anime Monday - Devil May Cry

So the whole "Anime Monday" is to take a break away from video games, and to focus on something else for a change. However once in awhile we'll be running into the rare occasions where video games and anime are one in the same. That's sorta what we have here today.

The Devil May Cry anime isn't what most will think it is at first glance. Usually games will get adapted into anime form, and they'll mostly follow the source material's story. But Devil May Cry takes a different approach. Instead of being a retelling of one of the games, this is a collection of short stories taking place after 1 and 3, but before 4. Some of these stories shed a bit more background on Dante himself, while others are completely original and seemingly have little to no impact on the rest of the series. That's not to say it isn't cannon, it's just not something that makes a huge impact. With that being said, it's not a bad series by any means, it's just nothing that special. If you're not already a fan, then there's not much here for you.

The Story:

To put things as simply as possible... Devil May Cry is about a man named Dante who runs a detective agency. On the surface he seems to be running a standard shop where people can come to him for help, but in reality his focus is more on the super natural. You see in this world monsters and demons do exist, and Dante himself is one. His father is an ancient demon hero who's name is the stuff of legends, while his mother was in fact a human. While originally Dante set up his "Devil May Cry" service with his own personal goals in mind, things have since come to a close and he's now taking on whatever jobs come his way.

As this series takes place after a good chunk of the game series has already happened, the anime doesn't go into too much detail about who is who, and why they are there. Both Lady and Trish return to help Dante with his business, all while offering up some jobs of their own, but they are never actually explained. On the other hand a little girl named Patty is also introduced, along with a central plot revolving around her. (For those of you who've played Devil May Cry 5, Patty is the girl heard over the phone talking about her birthday party.) Although her story doesn't really take shape until the end, she's a nice addition to help drive the story forward, and helps show a different side to Dante as well.

The typical episode format for the series usually revolves around someone walking into Dante's shop with a job. Sometimes they'll appear to be "normal," while other times he'll flat out be told that demons are related. Whatever the case is, Dante always accepts the job, and then goes off to who knows where to investigate. As stories tend to be contained within single episodes there's not a whole lot of mystery to solve in each case, but there are a few that will keep you guessing. The card episode in particular was a nice change of pace, with the culprit not being as clear cut as many others. It's episodes like these that really stand out, but they are sadly very few and far between.


Although the short stories told in DMC tend to be hit or miss, there is one thing that is always on point. Dante himself. One of the reasons people love the series so much is because of this character, and his devil may care attitude. Half the time he's goofing off and cracking jokes in the middle of serious situations, and the other half he's being his awesome "kill all demons" self. He's a very skilled fighter, and everything he does, he does with style. It's a lot of fun to see in the games, and it's a lot of fun here as well. Mix in the fact that Reuben Langdon is still voicing him here (it really shouldn't be anyone else), and it's just perfect. Reuben nails Dante as a character, and it's always nice to hear more from him.

Fitting In With the Series:

While most of the series is pretty self contained, that's not to say it doesn't have lasting effects on the story in general. Without going into spoilers, we do get to learn more about Dante's time as "Tony," and we're introduced to both Patty and Dante's go to guy Morrison. While Patty is reduced to a minor cameo in Devil May Cry 5, Morrison himself plays a larger role (despite being designed), and so does Dante's life as Tony. Of course there is a bit more to this story, but I wont ruin it for anyone.

Should You Watch It:

I know this week's article is shorter than normal, but honestly that's because of what this series is. Like I mentioned at the start, the DMC anime really is only for fans, and even then there's not a whole lot to see her. Some of the stories told are nice, while others are completely forgettable. They're worth watching just to see Dante in action, but if you're not already invested in the series I can't see too many people enjoying this one. That's not to say it can't happen, but it's not made with newcomers in mind.

That being said, I'd say it's still at least worth checking out. The animation is pretty nice, the voice acting is spot on, and it has some really nice music (especially that ending theme song). It can be a little boring at times, but there's still some fun to be had here.

Where to Watch:

The series can currently be watched at the following locations


However I strongly recommend watching it at Funimation if possible. Hulu only has the subbed version, while Funimation has both options. Believe it or not, despite being a Japanese series, DMC has always had English as it's native language. In fact Reuben Langdon himself not only voices Dante, but motion captures him as well. Because of this, the anime is the first time DMC was dubbed into Japanese. But it's still your choice. Choose which language you prefer. This is one of the rare times I'll recommend one over the other though.

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Thursday, November 21, 2019

Persona 5 Royal News Coming in 12 Days

Earlier today Atlus USA Tweeted the following message:

And that's about it! Yep just like you'd expect, they're going to leave us hanging in the mean time. Their past tweet history has been hinting at something big being announced soon, but now we at least have a time frame. We've known for quite some time that Persona 5 Royal would in fact be coming to the west in 2020, but hopefully now we'll see an actual release date. As for what Persona 5 Royal is...

Persona 5: The Royal -

If you haven't been following the news, or if you don't know much about Persona 5 in general, then let me fill you in. Basically Persona 5 is a popular JRPG that came out a few years ago. Since it's release a lot of new fans have been brought to the series, and the main character Joker was even added to Super Smash Bros Ultimate. The game has done very well, to say the least, but Atlus decided that wasn't enough. Thus "The Royal" was born.

While the original game was "complete" at it's time of release, this new version of the game is an "enhanced" release with new features and additional story and characters. While explaining too much about what is new goes into spoiler territory, I can say that the game's in game calendar has been expanded, and multiple new features have been spread throughout the original parts of the story. Although it might seem strange to do this with a game that's still pretty new, the fact is this is not the first time Atlus has done this. Persona 3 received a "FES" version that improved the core gameplay, and added a second "mini sequel" on at the end. It then went on to also get a PSP release which added a female playable character, but removed the overworld exploration to make up for the PSP hardware. Persona 4 later on was upgraded to it's "Golden" version, but that was a Vita release and not on the PS2 like the original. This game however is the most similar to what Royal is, considering it too added extra months onto the game year, and gave us new characters and features to play with.

So with that being said, which version of the game should be played? Well (without saying much), the new version is for sure the "definitive" release. There's more content. However not everyone may agree with the changes made to the base game, so it's hard to say. When it comes down to it though, it really depends what you are looking for. The original is still a great game, but if you can hold out for Royal you might as well.
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