Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Real Phantasm Adeleide

It's funny how a holiday brings both relief (in that you can break your routine and do whatever you want to do), and headaches (in that your schedule can get completely thrown off while you're doing whatever you wanted to do).

Since I had Memorial Day off from work, I spent it sleeping in, catching up with some cartoons I've been following, eating barbecue, and most importantly, watching a movie I really enjoy. Namely, 1997's Men in Black. The third film in the series was released during the weekend leading up to the holiday, but considering that I extremely disliked the second (as did a lot of people, apparently), I couldn't find myself particularly pumped up to go and see the third. However, the release did plant the idea to go back and watch the first again on my day off, so I guess that's something.

For this week's swag, I have three items that I've been looking forward to obtaining for quite awhile. A Figma of "White Moon Princess Phantasmoon", the comical, tongue-in-cheek magical girl alter ego of my favorite character in anything ever, Tsukihime's main heroine, Arcueid Brunestud (AKA Arc); an HG 1/144 scale kit of the mass production robot RGE-G1100 Adele from Gundam AGE; and a Real Grade (RG) RX-178 Gundam Mk-II (AEUG-type) from Zeta Gundam.

Figma and HG kits are nothing new to me, but RG is the most recent creation of the boys at maker Bandai's think tank. It effectively takes Master Grade (MG), the most long-standing "premium" class of Gundam plastic model kits (Gunpla), which only exists at the 1/100 scale (and is thus a fair bit more expensive than the norm), and shrinks them down to the 1/144 scale of the vast majority of their other kits, allowing them to be posed and placed in dioramas alongside their HG and FG (First Grade) brethren. It also means that semi-cheapskates such as myself can get all the detail and posability of MG without having to shell out upwards of $60. Since RG is a relatively new line, the selection of robots available is very small, and I was waiting for just the right one to get started with. Although the original RX-78-2 Gundam (which I also like) is available, it was the Mk-II that finally got me to plonk down the funds to purchase. As you can probably tell, I'm very much looking forward to putting it together, though I'm going to place it at the bottom of my model to-do list for the time being, so I can relish the moment I take those parts out of the box after I've finished putting together the other three kits I have waiting to be built.

Until next time, a Marble Phantasm... Right to your heart!

Sadly, a Figma of Arc in her normal attire doesn't exist at the moment. I'm hoping they sell enough of Phantasmoon to justify doing it...

Monday, May 21, 2012

Lunar Fantasy 0 Arc

April (and most of May up to this point) were busy as all hell for me. Between work, exercise, my studies, and trying to squeeze in time for gaming, I just plain haven't had it in me to write up any posts. Oh well...

I finished playing through Climax U.C., which I mentioned in an earlier post. It wound up being every bit as much fun as I'd heard, despite the fact that CPU-controlled characters cheat very, VERY blatantly. Somehow, I managed to unlock everything in the game 100%, something I'm not particularly known for doing. I guess that's the best testament I can give as to how much I really got into playing it (or how easy it is to do so, either way).

Aside from that, I've also been pretty wrapped up in playing The King of Fighters XIII. Although I'm not all that great at versus fighting games, they've been something I've enjoyed ever since I was little and they first got really popular. This particular entry in SNK's long-running series took me a little aback at first, as practically every character on the roster had had significant parts of their movelists cut or changed since XI, the last entry I had played (I skipped XII due to various accounts both from strangers and people I knew that it was a rushed project with very few redeeming qualities). Still, I've played and gotten used to (for the most part) a lot of the changes, and found myself having great fun (despite my inability to even score a single win against any of my friends online. The chagrin of it all...)

A few weeks ago, I went to an electronics store with a friend (he was looking for a new keyboard), when I noticed that they also sold games at heavy discounts. My curiosity piqued, I went to see what they had, and found three titles of interest, all for the PSP, and all under $30 - my kind of pricing. Remakes of the very first Final Fantasy game (which I played both on a friend's NES back in my teens, and again on the Game Boy Advance some time later) and Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete (itself a Remake of Lunar: Silver Star Story, neither of which I had a chance to play before now) were what I picked out, along with a game I'd never heard of, named for and based upon the legendary Jeanne D'arc. I scoped it out based both upon the fact that I love historical fiction, no matter how wildly it may deviate from reality (because it's more fun that way), and because it happens to be a tactical role playing game, one of my favorite genres.

Also pictured is my 1/144-scale HG 0 Gundam (Actual Combat Deployment-type), which I bought about a month ago, but hadn't gotten around to building until two days ago. As a fan of the original Gundam's design, I was very much interested in a kit of this machine which was designed in its likeness as an homage. It's a very basic kit with sparse accessories compared to many of its contemporaries, but I enjoyed building it all the same. My only major gripes with it are that the ball joints used on the neck section are very, very loose, to the point where using clear nail polish (a known solution for this kind of problem) only made them slightly less fiddly; as well as the fact that while there are foil stickers included to decorate the eye area (my less than stellar fine motor control means that I have a very hard time with precise painting) as per the norm, there weren't any included for the two cameras on the head (one just above the red and white head crest, and the other on the back of the same section). I was more than a little surprised, as usually those kinds of things are always provided for. Maybe it was just an oversight that slipped by production until it was too late...

Anyway, that's enough rambling out of me for one night. Until next time.