I have been a fan of the Metroid Prime series since I tried the first one years ago on the GameCube. As I posted then, it was my first real foray into first-person shooters and it was awesome. Then I took on the Ing in Metroid Prime 2:Echoes.
Metroid Prime 3: Corruption is an awesome final game, and I can say that without having seen the end of it. It builds on the first two and adds in some Wii capabilities that weren’t available in the previous games and it really immerses you in the world of Samus Aran.
At first I was a little annoyed at the “grab the handle, pull, twist, push” sequences to open doors, but I realized later that little things like that that really pull you into the game. It makes it more fully immersive than always shooting the door with the right weapon.
I was also unsure of the talking, but seeing as they kept Samus mute and let the other characters just tell her what to do, it kept up the feel of previous games. In the first two, your suit’s computer would tell you what to do and where to go, but with the addition of these other characters, it seems more realistic to have these other characters explain things and give objectives. It also fits better with the storyline.
The story is that the Federation is finally having some success fighting against Phazon enhanced Space Pirates. Then, Dark Samus (aka Metroid Prime) returns and launches an attack that threatens to stop the Federation cold. Samus, and a few other bounty hunters are dispatched to several different planets in response. Samus is the only one to return.
Anyway, it is an awesome game and definitely worth buying.
This is definitely one of the best RPGs ever made. Engaging plot, multiple endings, and the newer versions (PSX and DS) have a few more extras thrown in as well. Even though it was originally released for the SNES it’s just as much fun to play today as it was then.
I’ve started the game several times in the past, but I only just finished it a couple days ago on my DS. I can honestly say that I love every bit of this game. One of my favorite things is the way your actions in the side quests change things in the throughout the game’s timeline. For example, if you do the quest that helps Fiona plant the forest in the past, the desert in the present becomes a forest. If you defeat Ozzie in the past, the monster town is friendly in the present, instead of hostile.
I also like Magus’ character story alot. When you first meet him, he’s known as the Fiendlord, leading an army of monsters to destroy the humans. As the story progresses, you come to find out that he is a lot more complex. He wasn’t trying to destroy the world, but instead was trying to destroy Lavos, the final boss, who is also responsible for separating him from his family.
Anyway, it’s an awesome game and of you are a fan of RPGs, you should definitely make sure to play this sometime. Even if you’re not an RPG fan, try it and you may like it.
So when Red ended, Thomas Hunter was dead in one reality, finally killed by Carlos. In the other, he was alive and well, but his wife of 15 years, Rachelle was not, having been killed by an arrow as they escaped the forest for the desert. However, that is not the end of the story…err… stories. The world is being ravaged by a deadly virus in one reality and Thomas and the rest of the Circle are being hunted by the Horde in the other.
Here’s the breakdown.
This book brings Quorong’s daughter, Chelise, briefly seen in the previous book as Thomas was remembering a time he ran out of Elyon’s water and became a Horde. When Thomas is captured, she takes him as a servant to teach her how to read the Books of History, which no Horde can read due to the disease they carry.
In the other reality, Carlos gets a surprise when Thomas, who has been dead for days, wakes up and tells him about the other reality. Then, through contact with his blood, shows it to him.
Thomas gets captured early on and Chelise takes him for a servant so he can teach her how to read the books of the histories. Thomas takes an opportunity to use the blank books to save himself in the other reality along with Monique. Of course, Chelise didn’t expect to fall for Thomas, especially as she’s being promised in marriage to the new warlord.
In the other reality, the virus is ravaging the world which is standing at the brink of war. Thomas is the only hope for the world, and as far as they all know, he’s dead. Until he calls the President.
With the end of this book, everything is wrapped up into a nice little trilogy. The story could end, but it doesn’t. What happened to the blank books? That and several other questions are answered in the next book, Showdown.
So we’re back to Thomas Hunter and his two realities. In one, it’s been 15 years and he now leads a band of “albino” warriors against the Horde, those with the Shataiki skin disease. In the other, it’s been seconds and there’s a gun to his head.
Here’s the breakdown.
Added to the cast from the previous book is Justin, a man of controversy. He tries to bring peace between the Forest Guard and the Horde, and the Forest Guard are divided about him, though most hate him for it. For the Horde, they have a new General, Martyn, who is bolder and smarter than their previous Generals.
In the other reality, Thomas wakes up to the gun at his head. A gun held by Carlos, a professional hitman. Using skills he learned over the last 15 years in the alternate reality, he is able to save himself. During the course of the book, both Monique and Carlos experience the other reality.
The viruses in both worlds have been released, though symptoms are not yet appearing for those with the Raison Virus. The people behind the virus’ release are using France to make demands of the whole world.
In the other reality, dissension stirred up by Justin comes to a head toward the end of the book, culminating in the death of Justin, by drowning, after his blood has defiled the lake. The next morning, everyone has the skin disease. The only way to get rid of it is to drown in the lake, which has turned red.
I love the imagery in this series. In the alternate reality everything spiritual in this reality is physical there. And once you’ve finished the series, you realize just how many parallels there are. This is a really great book and you should read it.
“How can there be love without a true choice? Would you suggest that man be stripped of the capacity to love?” -Elyon as the boy
When I picked up this book to read, I had no idea how much of an adventure it would be to read it. I did not expect to be caught up in trilogy of books for the next few days as I immersed myself one of the best trilogies I’ve ever read. You could even say I “drowned” in it.
So here’s the breakdown.
So the main guy in this book is Thomas Hunter. He has the unusual ability to dream about another reality, but more on that later. There’s also his sister, Kara, and another woman, Monique, who just happens to be responsible for the worst virus outbreak in history. In the other reality, You have Tanis, first born among men, and Rachelle, who’s fallen for the amnesiac Thomas Hunter. Also in the other reality are these bat creatures called Shataiki and their leader, Teelah. Also along the way, you meet a little boy named Elyon, who also happens to be the creator of this alternate reality. And the first reality. Confused yet?
The story begins with Thomas’ walk home from work being interrupted by bullets. One grazes his head and when he passes out a few minutes later, he wakes up in the Black Forest of the alternate reality surrounded by the Shataiki and Teelah. From there he goes back and forth, between realities trying to remember everything in one and trying to stop a catastrophe in the other. Instead he watches both realities get destroyed by sicknesses, one caused by a virus and one caused by the Shataiki. The book ends with a gun held against an unconscious Thomas’ head.
It’s an amazing story and it really brings elements of the Christian faith to life. My favorite part of the book was Elyon’s playground and the stories of what he did for fun. In one story he reversed gravity for a day, just for the fun of it. At his playground, he opened up a hole as deep as the earth is thick and had his people jump in. They fell for hours, playing and enjoying themselves the whole way down. Then they splashed down in water, one of Elyon’s lakes, if I remember correctly.
It’s one of the best trilogies I’ve ever read, and I highly recommend owning a copy of it so you can read it over and over again.
When I first got this, I thought it was going to be basically, an upgraded version of the original Super Mario Bros. I’m glad I was wrong. There’s a lot more to it, and it is an amazing game. One of the best for the DS, that I’ve played.
Here’s the breakdown.
The characters are the same as always: Mario, Luigi, Peach and Bowser. Bowser Jr. is also one of the main characters, and actually seems to be the one with the master plan now.
As with the old Mario games, this one has no story beyond rescuing the princess who’s been taken yet again by Bowser Jr.
Music & Sounds
The music is a good mix of remade classics (the underground theme and the castle theme from the original) and the sound effects are par for the course in a Mario game.
Gameplay & Controls
This is where the differences really come to play. In addition to the requisite Starman, Super Mushroom and Fire Flower, there is also a Mega Mushroom, that makes Mario the height of the screen and able to walk through just about anything, the Mini Mushroom, which shrinks Mario to half his small size granting access to small passages and giving him the ability to float further in air, and the Koopa Shell, which gives Mario a koopa shell and allows him to slide across of the floor just like a shell that has been kicked, only you can control how long he slides.
Also, in addition to the regular coins and red coins, there is also 3 star coins in each stage. These can be used to open new paths on the map and at the end of the game to buy some nostalgic backgrounds.
There is also a Mario vs. Luigi mode that I haven’t had the chance to play yet, and a bunch of Mini games as well.
I would say that this game is definitely one of the most fun Mario games I’ve ever played. It’s not quite as much fun as Super Mario RPG (and seeing as I’m an RPG fanatic nothing may ever be that much fun), but it’s close.
I knew there was a reason I never saw this in the used games sections in the game stores I visited. Now I know why: it’s an awesome game. Be sure to pick it up if you get the chance.
“It was the first hole, the first breach, the first crack in the pattern of cracks in the places between the worlds, and it’s my fault.” -Walter Bishop
Whoa. That intro sequence was trippy. Anyway, Olivia learned in the last episode something that all of us viewers knew from the Season 1 finale: Peter is from the other side. We did not know the exact reasons or circumstances behind it, however, and that’s what this episode is all about.
Here’s the breakdown.
This is a flashback episode, as Walter explains to Olivia why Peter is in this universe when he’s from the other side. We also meet Peter’s mom for the first time. Those two make up the main cast for this episode. Others are Walter’s lab assistant, much like the 80′s version of Astrid, and Nina.
So we discover in the beginning of the episode that Peter is dying of a genetic disease for which there is no cure. Walter is using a window to the other side, which is about 30 years ahead of our side in technology (as evidenced by the RAZR phone that Walter shows the Army), to watch the other side in hopes that Walternate (Walter in the other side) will have better luck than he has in finding a cure. Then Peter on this side dies, right in front of Walter. He continues watching, hoping that Walternate will be able to cure alternate Peter so Walter can take comfort that Peter is living on somewhere, if not with himself. Then the Observer causes Walternate to miss the success of his compound, but Walter sees it. By the time Walternate turns back, the compound has failed, causing Walternate to totally disregard the compound that would cure his son. Walter, obsessed with saving Peter, any Peter, figures out the compound and crosses over to the other side – a first and what Walter says weakened the walls between the two worlds. When he crosses over, we find out what happened to Nina’s arm.
This episode answered a lot of questions about Walter and Peter’s past. Seeing how well they are getting along now, it will be sad to see it all destroyed when Peter learns the truth.
TobyMac’s new CD has been a long time coming and it was definitely worth the wait in my opinion. He has improved from each album to the next and this is no exception. He also seems to keep changing his hip-hop style on each CD.
Here’s the breakdown.
I love the music on this CD. From the upbeat pop rock sounds of Tonight to the retro style of Funky Jesus Music to the mellow-but-intense hip-hop of Captured there’s nothing not to like on this album. Toby truly keeps to his Diverse City philosophy with his music.
As always, his lyrics are awesome. The only drop in quality I found was in Showstopper, which doesn’t seem to have a message like the rest of his music, but it’s still a fun song.
I love the entire CD, but my absolute favorite songs are as follows:
Booth: “When cops get stuck we bring in people like you, ya know? Squints, you know, squint at things.”
Brennan: “Oh you mean people with very high IQs and basic reasoning skills?”
I only started watching Bones toward the end of 2009. I cannot say how much I enjoyed this show. It is quite awesome watching a woman whose IQ is higher than twice the number of reviews on my site right now, as she learns to interact with people alongside her FBI counterpart, Seeley Booth, who is almost literally the knight in shining armor.
Here’s the breakdown.
As the show opens, we see three of the main characters show who they are. First, Angela: laid back, fiesty and flirty. Next, Dr. Temperance “Bones” Brennan: intelligent and capable. Finally, Special Agent Seeley Booth: chivalrous, determined and in possession of a moral compass that seems to work better than most people’s vision.
A girl’s remains is found in a pond and it turns out to be an intern for a Senator who was rumored to have been sleeping with her. She’s been missing for nearly two years at this point, but by examining her bones, Dr. Brennan and her team is able to figure out exactly how she was killed and that she was pregnant at the time.
It’s quite interesting how much they seem to be able to learn from the bones in this show. At one point Bones was commenting how the victim had broken her wrist when she was seven, and then again a few weeks later, before it was fully healed doing the same activity. All that from the bones. I’m not sure how true it is, getting that much information, but it does make for a good show. And this episode is an awesome opening for it.
“You’re wrong. Many do believe, or they wouldn’t be frightened of movies on the subject, now, would they? Jaws terrified the country because people knew that shark attacks were real. The reason so many details of exorcism have become cliches in the movies is because they, too, are real. Any researcher will tell you that. Spiderman, Superman… not frightening, make-believe. But the movie The Exorcist? Except for a few details, amazingly accurate. And it terrifies us all.” -Father Robert Seymour
So Adam is the first Dekker book I’ve read in a while that wasn’t part of the series that started with the Circle Trilogy (before it became the Circle Series with Green). The quality of his writing hasn’t waned at all. I was still staying up late to read just one more chapter, to the detriment of my sleep.
Here’s the breakdown.
The main characters are Daniel Clark, lead FBI agent on the Eve case, Heather Clark, Daniel’s ex-wife, Lori Ames, Daniel’s new partner, and Eve, a psycopathic killer who has killed 15 women at the beginning of the story. Throughout the story Dekker threw in what looks like newspaper clippings about the past of a serial killer named Alex Price. As you read through you realize that the clippings are all about Eve’s past, except that Eve isn’t what the FBI would expect. Almost no one in the story, except Father Robert Seymour, Alex Price’s priest, believe in Heaven and Hell, God and Satan, or even good and evil. So when they discover the truth behind Eve, they are wholly unprepared to deal with it.
The story starts with Daniel finding Eve’s 16th victim… and becoming the 17th himself. After nearly 20 minutes of being dead, he comes back to life. He is the only person who has seen Eve and now cannot remember what he looks like, but keeps getting racked with these intense bouts of fear that physically knock him to the floor. Then he learns that Eve has broken his pattern and taken his next victim early. This victim? His ex-wife, who he still loves.
It’s an awesome book and, as with all of his books that I’ve read, shows the battle between good and evil very well. The way Dekker writes this story, you’d almost think he’s seen someone in Alex’s place. The way he wrote from David’s point of view at the end makes you wonder if he hasn’t seen it first hand, himself.
It is well worth the time it takes to find and read it. Do so, if you get the chance.
Wow. It’s been a while since I’ve posted a CD review. Let’s get to it…
I enjoy this CD from the first riff of The Feeling to the end of You. It’s a great CD.
It’s very much a Kutless CD, rock through and through, but unlike the difference between Sea of Faces and Hearts of the Innocent (there wasn’t much), there is a vast improvement on their sound in this album. It didn’t leave the car CD player for a few weeks after our trip to Seven Bays in July.
So I have been hearing about this Heroes show for a couple years now. I recently started watching the third season, trying to figure out what’s going on and failing miserably. Well, a coworker found out that I was interested and let me borrow his copy of Seasons 1 and 2 so I could get caught up.
I’m all caught up and I love this show.
The story is as follows: a bunch of people discover that they have powers and struggle to find a way to use them to stop a bomb from going off in New York. There’s a man named Sylar killing people by cutting off the top of their heads without touching them. There’s a company abducting these people with powers and “tagging” them. There’s a cheerleader in Texas whose fate seems to be linked with the world.
“Save the cheerleader. Save the world.”
Their powers range from flight and telepathy to an innate knowledge of how things work and the ability to absorb others powers by proximity. One guy emits radiation without ever coming in contact with radioactive material. My favorite character, Hiro, is a nerd whose dream to become a hero with superpowers learns that he can teleport and time travel. A cheerleader learns that she can’t die, despite jumping from a drilling rig and crashing a car into a wall at 80 miles per hour. A cop learns that he can read minds. A kid in Vegas is able to talk to machines.
While most of the powers, if not all, have been done in other comics, the storytelling is really what draws you in. Even the good guys are flawed and aren’t always good. The bad guys aren’t intrinsically evil, either and things aren’t what they seem. The character development in this show is spectacular.
If you get the chance be sure to take the time and watch this show. I bet you won’t be able to watch just one episode at a time.
Ever since I saw a demo video for this game about a year and a half ago, I’ve been wanting to play it. I found the game that it was based on, Narbacular Drop, and beat it in short order. Now, for Father’s Day, Ashley bought the game Portal so I’ve finally been able to play through it!
The whole idea is that you use the portal gun to create two portals to solve the puzzles in the rooms they put you in. For example, you have to exit a door that is across a pit you can’t jump over. How do you get there? Open one portal on the wall next to you and another on a wall across the pit then walk through the portal. Viola! You win!
Of course, this also means you can do infinite loops. Open one portal in the ceiling and one in the floor, then jump in. You’ll fall forever. This was similar to the idea behind my favorite puzzle, the one with increasingly high platforms in a tall room with acid on the floor. You create a portal on the lowest one and in the floor of the pit next to the entrance area. Jump in the pit and you come flying out of the platform, high enough to open a portal on the next highest platform, so that when you fall back through the portal you just flew out of, you’ll shoot out the new one on the second platform.
That was just pure fun.
Portal is an awesome game and it’s one of the few games I actually liked to watch the credits. This is because of the freakin’ hilarious song that plays in the background. In fact, it was funny enough that VGCats did a flash animation based on it. Check it out.
It’s an extremely fun and challenging game and the gameplay is great for all ages. A few of the things that the computer says are kinda creepy and might not be okay for kids, but it was only creepy, not filthy or raunchy.
Watching through this season again reminded me why I am so excited for Day 7: things get personal with Jack. Sure, it’s exciting to watch him save the world, but when it doesn’t come close to home for Jack, it doesn’t have the same impact. Watch Jack’s responses to different situations on this one and watch his responses to similar situations in other seasons. The difference? Huge. Jack actually cries several times throughout this season as things overwhelm him. The next time I remember him crying is the last scene of season 3.
Anyway, this was Ashley’s first time seeing Day 1 and she really enjoyed it. Well…. until the very last scene. I’m sure that a lot of people agree that they could have ended it differently. Oh well, can’t change it now. I think what happens provides some good character development in future seasons.
Honestly, this is one of my favorite seasons of 24. It’s personal, action-packed, and the story has more twists than you can shake a slinky at… though, why you’d be shaking a slinky I don’t know. Anyway, take the time to watch it if you haven’t seen it before. or even if you have.
No, I’m not talking about the song. Well, I guess I am, kinda. I’m actually talking about the movie that is based on the origins of the well-known, oft-sung classic, so maybe I am talking about the song.
Actually, I’m not talking at all; I’m typing.
Silliness aside, this is an excellent movie about Britain’s abolishment of the slave trade and the man who made it happen in Parliament. It makes you feel the struggles he has along the way politically, emotionally and even physically.
For me there was no more poignant moment in the movie than when he slammed his cards on the table and exclaimed, “This game is over!” when the other guy offered his slave as part of the bet. Now this man that the movie follows is not the author behind the song; his old pastor is. He goes to the haunted man for guidance and direction a few times throughout the movie. My favorite quote from him was this: “Although my memory’s fading, I remember two things very clearly. I’m a great sinner and Christ is a great Savior.”
It’s an excellent movie and great for families. If you haven’t seen it, get up right now and go see it. I give it a 5 out of 5.
NOTE (2011): This was originally part of a group of posts I called the “Quad Shot”. This was “Quad Shot Part 1″.
A few months ago, I reserved and paid for a Gamecube copy of Twilight Princess. I picked it up just before Christmas. It’s a freakin’ awesome game. The graphics are as good as I’ve seen on the Gamecube. The story is deep and involving, albeit somewhat predictable (it’s a Zelda game: you go through a bunch of dungeons to save the world from some villian, usually Gannondorf, collecting a crapload of cool stuff on the way). The world itself is huge. Like 10 or 20 times the size of Ocarina of Time or Majora’s Mask and 100 times more detailed (the close-up you get of the Master Sword when you pull it from it’s stone shows just how much). I’m going through it at a leisurely pace trying to enjoy it as much as possible. Sometimes it’s fun to just ride through Hyrule Field on Epona whacking the miscellaneous baddies that are standing around. Other times I run around as the wolf scaring the townfolk of Castle Town just for the heck of it. If you don’t have this game, get it! It’s the best Gamecube game I own!
It really is the best Zelda game out there… at least until Skyward Sword comes out.
I have now beaten Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords. I beat it last Friday. The ending’s a little disappointing, but it’s still a fun game. I went Light Side, dual lightsabers (one silver, one orange). I want to go through it again soon as a Dark Jedi and a single lightsaber. I’ve heard you get massive damage bonuses if you stick with to just one.
And by the way, I knew from the beginning that the old lady was a Sith. Knew it, I tell you!
Wow. When you compare this sequel to the original movie, there’s no comparison. This movie just blows the first one out of the water (even though it’s still a good movie).
The story is put together almost perfectly and flows just as well. The graphics and effects are excellent and the new characters aren’t so numerous that it’s hard to follow.
It starts off with Nightcrawler infiltrating the White House and almost assasinating the President. That sets off a sequence of events that leads to an attack on Xavier’s School. I find it funny that all but six escape. Supposedly the best troops in the coutry and they can’t capture a school full of sleeping kid-mutants. Go figure.
One of the few things I have against this movie is the fact that American fighters were able to get a lock on the BlackBird. The first movie said that noone had the technology to detect it, much less lock on (at least that’s what I got from it). But the scene is still great anyways.
My biggest complaint against the movie was that they didn’t hide Mystique’s chest as much as they did in the first one. It’s kind of annoying and wrong that they feel that they needed to do this.
Well, I can’t say much more without giving away the story, so I’ll just conclude in saying that it’s worth the time and moeny to watch.