Now that Sword Art Online is finished, I wanted to take a bit of time to talk about one of my favorite elements about the anime. If you follow me on Twitter, you likely already know about my passion for the Guild Wars franchise. Since Guild Wars 2 didn’t come out until a month after Sword Art Online, the anime helped hype me up for my upcoming re-immersion into the online gaming world. I had of course participated in the beta, but knowing that my characters and progression would be completely wiped before the official release made it was hard to take it seriously.
But then the game came out, and with my head start access, I rush leveled my first character, a Sylvari ranger, to the max 80 within the week. It wasn’t until that point that I took a breath and looked more carefully at all the possibilities around me, like jumping puzzles, explorer achievements, and crafting. I opted for Leatherworking (armor for medium class rangers, engineers, and thieves) and set out again on hitting the cap at 400. I found the progression in crafting to be just as enthralling and rewarding as pushing my character through the storyline and maps, since it was the very first time I had ever experimented in that area. When SAO episodes featuring “Liz” the smith and Asuna’s cooking abilities aired, very early in the series, I was extremely excited as a “fellow” craftsman and more appreciative of the anime’s authentic gaming environment. Continue reading →
Happy Holidays! I figured I’d jump into the 12 Days of Anime project with my own round-up post of my 12 memorable moments for the year (kudos to Yumeka for the idea). Anime conventions, aniblog tourneys, favorite anime of the year–it’s all there reminding me why I watch anime and continue to blog. Thank you for staying with me through 2012, and enjoy reading!
“It’d be interesting if 2.0 surpassed the original, but unlike Ashirogi Mutou, I can’t see the author’s face!” (Niizuma Eiji, Bakuman. 3, “Confidence and Resolve”).
I find the ideal workshops–be they writing, music, or other–are the ones with lower seat counts. As valuable as an outsider’s opinion is, it’s important to never lose your sense of self. There’s a balance that must be struck between pleasing the audience and creating a piece unique to yourself that warrants the attention paid to it. The current arc in Bakuman. 3 questions this argument, that a work created by the input of many deserves to stand on the same stage as a work produced by one. And given the popularity and seeming perfection of the group work gathered by Nanamine, who’s to say that his methods and final product are not every bit as justified as the old standby collaboration of artist and editor?
I recently stumbled across a manga titled Addicted to Curry–a long running series that will soon come to an end, yet still hasn’t been serialized in America. The manga is true to its name in that the characters really are addicted to experiencing curry in all its forms. Despite all the various kinds that I read about in the nine volumes I could find of the forty-six, it was the very first chapter that re-energized me. In it, gifted curry chef Kouenji Makito makes Sonezaki Yui, the heir to a declining curry restaurant, a well known Indian dish: keema matar. The ground meat and pea curry revitalizes Yui with its familiar taste and spiciness and helps her realize that she truly loves her restaurant and is not yet ready to give up. What once seemed impossible suddenly begins to look achievable. Given my current situation, I couldn’t help but cling to that vision as well.
This season’s Hidamari Sketch x Honeycomb is really hitting the ball with the stories and movement upward from high school to college. This week’s particular episode struck me since I’ll be moving out of my college town soon and into the big world. Even though a large distance will soon separate me from friends I have come to know over my seven years of undergraduate and graduate school, I can rest easy remembering that they’re only a simple text message, E-mail, phone call, or Skype chat away.
Hidamari Sketch has always given its viewers plenty of examples of Japan’s inventive and colorful snacks, as well as shown us just how conflicted Hiro is with her love for cooking and nervousness about body weight. This time around, it’s little Nazuna in the spotlight along with her kitchen incompetence and impending visit from the parents. What makes this particular episode so charming is the homey and family feel that the fried chicken, “karaage”, brings to the residents of Hidamari Apartments, their home away from home.
Now a full month into the fall season, I’ve finally settled on which shows I’ll be watching from week to week. I actually would like to include a few more, but my busy schedule means that some of them will have to be reserved for a slower time of year. For now, I’ve got nine new series to add to my watch list, and boy is there a lot of fluff and romance in the air!
Personal note: let me take a moment before my thoughts on the anime to apologize for my break in blogging. Life has been busy lately, as indicated in detail in the personal update box in the right-side column on my front page. I have been keeping up with a good number of anime this season, but have not had the time to sit down and really share my thoughts on them. For those of you who have stuck around, thank you for your continued support! Now on to my review!
Moyashimon Returns ended just recently and threw us hopes for another season in the making. Another sequel is exactly what this franchise needs given the somewhat odd direction that this second series takes. For those of you who have seen the live action version of Moyashimon (I have),or perhaps even read the manga (which I haven’t), this climax and focus on Haruka’s character probably wasn’t much of a shock. But for viewers solely familiar with the first season or perhaps jumping into Returns as a standalone show, the amount of time spent on her storyline may have felt overly long.
While there were definitely loose ends left from the first season, the original series wrapped up Haruka’s family issues just enough to have possibly forgone further elaboration in following shows. Instead, Returns devoted the majority of its airtime to someone who once felt more like a side character. Regardless of the odd choice of character development, the individual stories were still able to circle around a common theme of the pursuit of happiness. Continue reading →
Bar Eden Hall is a place of unwinding, where the cares of your busy, every day life just slip away. The mellow atmosphere and attentive bartender are there to soothe your agitation. What will be your spirit of choice? Will you leave the decision up to the bartender and drink a possible Glass of the Gods?
Not too long ago I was tagged by deluscar’s Kai and Traveler on Revenge’s ahelo into the Anime Blogger Interrogation Game. Started by blogger Iso, the aim of this game is for bloggers to get to know one another by asking and answering random questions before tagging new bloggers into the fun.