Blizzcon 2018 Review

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Diablo Immortal

I usually start these reviews with World of Warcraft but its hard to do that this time around with the spectacle we got this year with Diablo Immortal. There has been a lot of talk over the last few years about how Blizzard has lost touch as a company with the fans of their games but this year was the first time I agree to a point. That was just not a good idea or a good way to announce this game. Not to this crowd. I was amazed it got through to that point and no one at any point of the presentation asked if it was a good idea to go about it like this. Me watching from home and the audience in attendance where stunned that this is what they were going to close the opening ceremony on. Even the presenter could tell on stage that it did not go over well from the dead eye expressions looking back at him.

A truly legendary moment in Blizzard history. Even as we speak the backlash of the announcement of a mobile Diablo game with still no real word on a Diablo 4 is going strong. All this being said the nerds rioting on the internet now will play Diablo Immortal first chance they get. Personally speaking I don’t mind it. I can’t say I’m a huge Diablo fan. I like the lore and the style of the game but I cant say II’m and avid fan. Diablo for sure isn’t my World of Warcraft. I just play the story and enjoy hardcore mode and coop. So Diablo Immortal is something I am looking forward too. But to the fans of Diablo this was the equivalent of a kick to the balls and spit on your face. I cant even imagine how upset I would be if something similar would happen to World of Warcraft. Just the thought gives me a sinking feeling in my chest.

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World of Warcraft Battle for Azeroth

Naturally there wasn’t too much to be said about WoW this year. We are in the middle of an expansion so there was just talk about the new content and some zones. Some balancing and mounts coming to time walking. Probably the most exciting thing for me being the Zandalari Trolls coming out with the next big content patch. Its also cool they can be Paladins. I mainly want to make a Zandalari Druid because their Druid forms looks amazing. Kulturen Humans also seem to be really cool. Also big surprise their mounts a horse. Alliance really gets the short end of the stick with this stuff. There wasn’t much else said here overall. We seem to be going down the roadmap smoothly.

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World of Warcraft Classic

I said it before and i’ll say it again I don’t think Classic is the answer. Make the current game more old school don’t remake an “old” version of the game. As a Virtual Ticket holder I get to try the game out and it is not Classic it is straight up old. People really need to take the nostalgia glasses off and smell the roses here. I would be surprised if this game does well in this day and age. Most of the people who asked for this game were the annoying private server trash or people who barely played the game in the first place and stopped playing years ago. Like you are literally pirating a mediocre version of the game and complaining and demanding things from Blizzard. Crazy thing is it worked. Thats like going to the guy who pirated all the Marvel movies and being like what do you want to see in the next Marvel movie?

The other annoying crowd thats been asking for Classic is all the people who stopped playing altogether way back when. Why are we listening to these people too? People who are playing World of Warcraft want World of Warcraft to be better. We don’t want to go back to a time when choices mattered. We want Blizzard to make choices matter again in World of Warcraft right now. I don’t know people, I’ll keep an eye on this. Form what I played there were for sure things I missed and would like to see worked into the current game and there was a lot more I’m glad is long gone.

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Warcraft 3: Reforged

Easily the biggest well received announcement of the convention Warcraft 3: Reforged. I cant say I’m the biggest original Warcraft fan but this does look like a cool game. I wish we got Warcraft 4 instead but it really looks like they are testing the field with this to see if the fans will take the bait. If it works they will probably jump on announcing Warcraft 4 the year following the release of Reforged or the year after that. Overall very cool and long asked for.

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Overwatch

Very lackluster compared to last year. Just a new hero announcement really. Ashe does look cool and the fans of Overwatch do seem to be happy with this. But Overwatch fans are like loyal dogs. Whatever their master Blizzard gives them they will eat it up and say thank you. If Overwatch Immortal where to happen you would see these guys going on about how it’s a revolutionary idea and mobile is the future and such. The funny thing is Overwatch would translate well to mobile. The gameplay is simple enough and it already has loot boxes. Something for Blizzard to think about. Overall I don’t care here and the fans seem happy.

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Starcraft 2

If Diablo didn’t exist I would say Starcraft 2 is the game Blizzard hates the most lol. There wasn’t much to talk about here. They announced a new commander and mostly tuning changes. As someone who’s not a Starcraft player it was as lackluster as the Overwatch coverage maybe even more. From what I saw of the tournament though it was fairly interesting. I cant say if the fans were happy or indifferent here. Wouldn’t say they seemed to be upset in anyway which is a good sign. But if Blizzard is looking to piss them off I recommend Starcraft Immortal.

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Hearthstone: Rastakhan’s Rumble

This was extremely weird. I don’t now what the Hearthstone player demographic is but all the coverage of this game this year felt like it was made for a kindergarten class. Like the same kids who are into Fortnite would have loved this coverage. I couldn’t watch it with the sound on and even found myself looking away due to how cringey it was. It was like they thought I was an idiot and but they were the dumb ones. I really don’t know. Im kind of worried and cant say I’m excited or care for Rastakhan’s Rumble. Before it seemed light hearted and chill like hanging out in a cabin and talking about Hearthstone and now its like Twitch TVs most annoying cringe streamers present Rastakhan’s Rumble. I can see why most of the people I know who were really into Hearthstone are jumping off into Yugioh and Magic The Gathering.

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Heroes of the Storm

We got a really cool new hero Orphea announced. Our first Nexus Heroes of the Storm exclusive hero. I really like her look and play style. Looking forward to play her in the future. Other than that they mostly talked about balancing and tuning and for the most part I like the direction they are going with the game. The idea of making mercenary camps a bigger deal is something I’m interested in. I can see it leading to more in jungle fights over camps. Overall similar to Overwatch here I just care about this and don’t care about Overwatch.

Closing Thoughts

Overall it was a legendary Blizzcon and a very mediocre one at the same time. Im just happy to have been apart of it all as it happened. I wonder how things will turn out in the long run. I think most of these games will have their ups and downs and people will accept Diablo Immortal eventually. I mean even back when Hearthstone got announced as a World of Warcraft fan at the time I was openly disappointed in the game. But really enjoyed it for the following years. I mean not anymore but it was good during the time Blizzard still had ideas for the game. I would say Diablo Immortal will probably go through a similar process in the future.

P.S. Im posting this as the closing ceramony is happening and I never herd of this band (Train) but damn they rock. Im going to downlod all their albums.

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Persona 4 Golden Review

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Ive been on a serious PlayStation Vita kick the last month or so. Ive had Persona 4 Golden for a few years now and have been meaning to sit down and give it a serious go one of these days but it just kept getting pushed back. I find I don’t have the time I once use to when it comes to smashing hours into a game. Even when that game is portable. But this time around I made a serious conscious effort to finally play through Persona 4 Golden. I consider Persona 3 to be one of the best JRPs I have ever played. Im not sure how well it still holds up now but from my memory of playing through it in high school it was one of the most genuine JRPG experiences I ever had. Who would have thought mixing dating sims, Pokemon and a collectible card game with a traditional dungeon crawler would yield such results.

Persona 4 Golden is no exception. It is a further refined version of the play style and systems made popular in Persona 3. I haven’t played Persona 5 yet but due to how well that games doing I would suspect its been refined even further there. Persona 4 Golden starts off with your voiceless, nameless (Yu Narukami the in game story name if you want to use it) character moving to Inaba a small country side town of Japan. You live with your uncle Dojima and little cousin Nanako. Soon after arriving you find yourself intertwined with a world inside the TVs and a series of murders you and your high school Investigation team have to solve. The characters are all so dynamic and genuine. You can’t help but feel a friendship grow between them. During my first play through I would think on certain days oh I haven’t seen so and so in a while I should go hangout with them, not because of some advantage I might gain later but because I like the character and want to see what they are up to.

As the game progresses you will build “social links” with others who inhabit the town. These social links are directly connected to a persona type. I look at it like types of Pokemon. You have Fire, Dragon, Psychic and so on in Pokemon and in Persona you have types like Magician, Justice, Chariot. A lot of which are based off tarot cards. The more you use these persona in battle the more they will level, again like Pokemon. The stronger your social links are with the corresponding person that represents that personas type the stronger your persona will be and the more powerful the personas you make of that corresponding type in the future will be. It’s safe to say the out of combat social link aspects are the most important part of the game overall. It’s also the most interesting part for me personally. I genuinely feel connected to the characters I formed strong bonds with through the game. When I finished my first play through I felt a sinking feeling in my chest thinking about how its over and I won’t see them again from my perspective.

Which is partly why I’m playing through it again on New Game Plus (NG+). Got to catch all those Pokemon right, I mean Personas. NG+ is an option you unlock after your first play through. On your first play through you will encounter options you wont be able to use due to insufficient Courage or Knowledge and such. These are things you will raise through the game as you do certain things. They can be maxed out and it would be best to max them out before the end of your first play through. Which you can do very easily on your first play through by simply keeping an eye on it and doing the corresponding tasks to raise them. Another thing that carries over with NG+ is your Persona Compendium which is basically your list of Persona you have created or found over your first play through. Some other things also carry over but I would say these are the most important and standout aspects you get to take with you. Also something very useful with NG+ is the option to change your difficulty in game. On your first play through you will be locked into the difficulty you choose when you start the game so choose wisely. I went with Normal and found it fairly challenging myself. Im now replaying it on Very Easy and well its very easy. This is meant to be a Trophy run for me so I’m ok with that but I think the best middle ground for me would have been “Easy”. If I were to pick it up again just for fun in like 10 years that’s the difficulty I would pick.

Speaking of trophies. You cannot get all the trophies in your first play though. You can get a lot of them but you will be missing some that are ment for a following play through. Which is partly why NG+ exists. Its a genuinely great feature for a game like this. I don’t have many cons for this game but one I will bring up is when it came to the overall investigation of the murders I found every person I was suspicious of ended up being a key part of story. Best way I can put it without spoiling anything is I called it every step of the way and I’m talking about the True Ending here where there’s a lot going on. In the games defense I am a big fan of mystery in general. Sherlock Holmes is one of my heroes so naturally when dealing with a murder investigation in a game I’m trying to break it down very aggressively. Also a bit of a humble brag here but I am also a licensed private investigator here in Canada so I’m a bit more suspicious than most people would be simply playing through this game. It’s also why I love Naoto Shirogane so much. So thats one issue with the game which again is more an issue with me than the game itself.

Another small issue I have is after you max out a social link you really loose the incentive to see that person again. It feels a lot like I got what I needed from you now buzz off. Which feels really bad from the standpoint of someone you got to know well enough to max out their social link. Even something as simple as experience points following a maxed out social link to the corresponding persona type would have been a good enough incentive. I wonder if they made a change to this in Persona 5.

Persona 4 Golden is a 10/10 all day every day. This game is a reason to buy a PlayStation Vita if you haven’t got one already. If this is the only game you ever get for the Vita than it would be money well spent. I cant seem to get myself to put it down. Ive even gone as far as having a 2 different dreams about the game. Im already planing out my fall schedule so I can finally play Persona 5. Keep an eye out for that review.

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Final Space Season 1 Review

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Its rare for a show to make it to my top 10 tv shows list and my top 10 animated tv series list at the same time. The last time I think this has happened is The Last Avatar, not to be confused with The Legend of Korra which was dog trash and a disgrace to the masterpiece that is The Last Avatar.

Final Space has done it though. It merges the line between funny and serious in a way rarely seen or at least done right. The best example I can think of is Deadpool 1 and 2. They keep it epic, beautiful and most importantly funny the whole time.

At first, I thought it kind of had Futurama meets Rick and Morty vibe but Final Space is really its own thing. I find it to be much more beautiful than either of those shows though. Shot after shot and scene after scene I find myself thinking “Oh this would make an awesome wallpaper”. The main characters comedy might not be for everyone but I love it. Its just constant and random but still feels grounded in the character.

Which I exacted from Olan Rogers who I have been a fan of since the Lions Blaze. (Linked down below) I have not been following his work the past few years so I was surprised out of my mind when I could have sworn I recognized the voice of Gary. Then I see Olan Rogers name come up and I lost it. To see how far he’s come from a fun YouTuber to working with Conan O’Brien. I’m just super proud of the guy.

Final Space is quality all around and any Olan Rogers fan can see and hear his comedy resonate through every part of this show. I can’t say more good things about it. 10/10, do yourself a favor and watch it. Season 2 can’t come sooner.

 

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Ant-Man and the Wasp Review

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When I finished watching Antman and the Wasp I have to say my feelings were indifferent. I didn’t dislike the movie but I didn’t like it either. I found it hard to watch a Marvel movie after Infinity War. Everything comes off as being small in comparison. Pun intended. I didn’t like what they did with Ghost at all. I’m really getting tired of this every character needs to be either not white or a woman regardless of the source material. If you want to add in more people of color or woman into your media make new interesting characters for them. Don’t take characters we know and love and change them for your agenda. I’m looking you Starfire.

I also didn’t care about wasps mother one bit. Sure she might help kick off things with Thanos in the future but I don’t think she was overall needed for that. I’m sure they could have easily tweaked things here and there to get the same results. Other than that which is quite a bit really I liked the movie. I think Paul Rudd was hilarious and lovable again as Ant-man. I love the dynamic he has with his agent caretaker. They sold me on the relationship they had from the moment they were on the screen together. I really want to see more of this agent in the future.

Michael Pena as Luis is also back and he’s got a good bit of screen time. I think Luis is one of my favorite characters in the MCU. I wouldn’t mind a show or movies about Luis going around getting himself into trouble. I would love to see that. Overall I think the movie was a fun watch and worth seeing if you are a Marvel fan or an Ant-man fan. If you’re not one of these 2 groups you aren’t missing anything by skipping this movie.

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Godzilla: King of the Monsters Trailer

I’ve low key been a big Godzilla fan for a while now. I thoroughly enjoyed the last film in this series and I really like what they are doing with the Godzillaverse. They also said there’s going to be a lot more Godzilla in this movie which based on the trailer looks like the case. This is one of my more anticipated movies coming out. Can’t wait to see it.

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SHAZAM! – Official Teaser Trailer

I love Shazam as a character. As a kid, I liked him more than most Super Heros. It was exactly what any kid would want. Being able to be a kid with Super Powers but at the same time, grown-ups will take you seriously. I wasn’t too sure about this movie leading up to the trailer and I’m still not but it has for sure swayed me to be more hopeful.

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Writers Notebook

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I’ve found myself writing a lot more recently and decided to get a notebook to dedicate to writing. I wanted to transcribe anything I find useful from my previous notebooks. When doing this I found an interesting trend with my writing through the years. This is a 4 year span of notes I’ve been taking. All the tabs represent writing points and exclude things like “Video games I need to beat” lists. The pink tabs are during my time in college 2014-2015. The blue tabs are all after college when I was still figuring out my job. Clearly, this is when I had the most time to write. I actually held back on the tabs here. 2015-2016. The purple tabs are from when I was comfortable and established with my job. As you can see there was a huge drop in writing 2016-2017. And the green tabs are 2017-present(2018 as of writing this). I started using my notebook differently with the most current Moleskine, because of this I ended up having far less in it than I otherwise would have around this time.

Based on the level of consistency with the last 3 I would be on my 5th Moleskine now if I kept up with my previous writing trend. That writing trend being the back half of the notebook being used as a journal. I stopped doing this because I didn’t see the point of keeping a journal. I thought any writing points I needed I can add throughout the notebook. What Ended up happening is I started writing less. Which now is fixed with the dedicated Writers Notebook. I went with the Moleskine large soft cover for my Writers Notebook because I didn’t want too many pages on a subject if I can help it. If you are looking at picking up a Moleskine notebook and having trouble deciding between the soft cover and hard. I personally prefer soft cover. I find it overall nicer but I do find it more difficult to write in on a general basis. That being said if you need to write say standing in a train than I think the softcover it better. You can fold it back on itself and write fairly comfortably.

With a dedicated writers notebook, I found it much easier to work on my writing and blog post, this post included. Its hard to beat the level of convenience you get with having a single reference point. I didn’t organize it in any special way. Just numbered the pages, transcribed any quotes or ideas I had over the years and left a few pages after to expand on. If I fill those pages up ill just leave a small note on what page it continues on. I’ve already found that I’m seeing results in my writing after doing this. Just last night as I was going to bed I came up with some talking points for a project I’m working on. I jumped out of my bed and wrote them down in my Writers Notebook. I’ve already started implementing them into my project today. It’s not the first time I’ve come up with ideas like this but I never got out of bed before to write it down. The lack of having a focal point made me lazy and wander off. I would tell myself ill just remember it. Now I don’t have to.

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