Virtual Tourist Yakuza 0 7/21/19

Greetings! 

Yes, I dropped off the face of the planet again. Seems a rather common occurrence anymore. 🙁 While I am doing better than I have been, I am not 100%. Sundays have been elusive for some reason. The fact it’s quarter-end close and we’re doing it in two separate systems hasn’t helped! (There’s been loads of overtime the last couple of weeks.)

Conventions!

I will be going to my first convention this year in a couple of weeks! ArmadilloCon will soon be upon us!  Looking forward to it. 🙂

Promotions!

Smashwords is holding a July ebook special offer. Both Crossed-eyed Dragon Troubles and Inner Demons are on sale at 50% off! If you’ve been curious about my books, this might be the perfect time to try one of them out! 

 

Cross-eyed Dragon Troubles Inner Demons

 

Yakuza 0

Yakuza 0 - Maharaja

Street view of one of the main roads. The Maharaja dance club is across the street. A gaggle of schoolgirls as well. 

Yakuza 0 - Food Display

Tasty looking food display! Not all the businesses are actually there, but does make for some nice scenery. 🙂

Yakuza 0 - tacrics

This is Oda. He works for Tachibana Real Estate. He says he’s not a yakuza, but he sure knows a lot of their tactics! 😛 

Yakuza 0 - Interesting club front

Interesting club front. lol. 

Yakuza 0 - Darts

Kazuma takes all the mini games very seriously. Here’s his game face for playing darts! Brint it!

Yakuza 0 - Karaoke Bar

One of the toughest battlefields – a karaoke bar! (You either get to sing or cheer them on. Not for the weak! So hard! 

Yakuza 0 - Whiskey

This is the second Japanese game I’ve played where they educate the players about certain types of alcohol. Bizarre!

Yakuza 0 - Temple

When one of the game hints told me to seek out a rather unusual Shinto priest, this guy was NOT what I was expecting – white suit, clown face, and green bushy hair. He has free packages of goodies, which include costumes (not yet far enough to be able to see them or wear them). More important is the shrine itself. Doing certain things in the game gain you CP points. (Eating all the food at a restaurant, completing goals like walking 2 miles, etc.) You spend those points here. 

Yakuza 0 - Bob U

Close up of the biggest and oddest looking priest ever!

Yakuza 0 - Producer KazumaFashion change for a sub-story. This is what a producer of a film looks like. (When we meet the real guy, he’s wearing the exact outfit! lol)

That’s it for this week. Hopefully, we’ll get to go to the movies on Friday. This quarter-end has been brutal and since we’re going to the merged company’s BOLO system 100% for Aug, close for that should be insane. Ugh….

Have a great week!

Virtual Tourist – Yakuza 0 6/30/19

Morning! I’m running late!

Yakuza 0

Yakuza 0 - Title Screen

The Yakuza 0 title screen. 

Yakuza 0 - mysterious man's suite

Kiryu is helped out by a mysterious man. This is his swanky pad. 

Yakuza 0 - Pachinko

Outside a Pachinko arcade. No Sousa marching music though. 😛

Yakuza 0 - convenience store

One of several convenience stores in the area.  One of the few places you can buy food to take with you to up your health after a fight. At restaurants, you have to eat it there, unless your health is full, in which case you can’t eat at all. 

Yakuza 0 - Kiryu's neighborhood

Kiryu’s neighborhood. He has a one-room apartment on the second floor of the building on the right. 

Yakuza 0 - food displau

A restaurant food display.

Yakuza 0 - mini car races

One of the places Kiryu can play side games. This is for mini car racing! You get a free car, and you can buy or find parts to improve it. One of the few side games I did OK at. Lol. 

Yakuza 0 - 50's hoodlum

One of the substories. Rather hilarious. Love his 50’s Yankee look. 

Yakuza 0 - rebel singing group

These guys are part of a singing group that is very popular with delinquents. They look like delinquents but are far from it. They want me to teach them how to pass as badass, so their fans don’t realize the truth. Lol. (The leader talks tough on second, apologetic the next, hilarious.)

Yakuza 0 - restaurant

One of the restaurants you can buy food. On the minimap, they show as orange. The yellow squares are for places you can buy things, like the convenience store. Purple colored areas are places with games. The Sega Game stores have UFO Catchers! (Something else I’m doing decent on! Yay! Stuffed animals for the win! :P)

Have a great week! And a happy 4th of July!

Virtual Tourist – Yakuza 0 6/16/19

First off, Happy Father’s Day to all the Dad’s out there!

Happy Father's Day

Mini Movie Review

Men In Black International Men In Black: International – They are back! With more attitude, bigger weapons, and the usual chaos! 😛  The original theme music is back, so the film had a nostalgic vibe to it. There’s even a painting in High T’s office of J and K saving the world. 😛  There’s a recurring theme in the film they pound into you hard – the universe always puts you where you need to be when you need to be there. They stretch this out a bit much! And while some explanations on why things have happened are shown, there are others you have to infer from what’s been presented. (For example: Why H changed so much in 3 years. And no, it’s not the girlfriend. Though if you don’t put it together yourself, it’s gone :P) Cool effects, fast pace, overall a good ride! Rating: 3.5 out of 4 (Hubby’s Rating: Worth Full Price of Admission.)

Yakuza 0

This is another Japanese console game that has been converted for PC. For the most part, they’ve done a good change over, though I have run into one issue on a keybinding that drove me nuts as it trapped me on a fighting style tutorial. Ugh.

It’s 1988 in Kamurocho, a fictional small town/district in Japan. You’re Kazuma Kiryu, one of two orphan boys who joined the local yakuza when they became of age. Kiryu is a straight shooter, who’s gets set up for murder so the shame can be used against his boss in a tangled political power play. 

In the middle of the serious storyline, there are substories to get involved in and mini-games (karaoke, pocket racers, baseball batting, etc.). Some of those are far from serious. Watching Kyriu pose with his pocket racer and doing his “I win!” bit are hilarious. Geek fun abounds!

Yakuza 0 - Kamurocho District

One of the streets in Kamurocho at night. Loads of clubs and adult entertainment. Following my friend Majima to do some drinking.

Yakuza 0 - club street

The opposite side of the same street. Video stores, pachinko, and more.

Yakuza 0 - Majima and Kyriu

Majima and Kiryu. Both orphans raised at the Sunflower Orphanage. It’s financed by their boss, Kazama, which is why they both decided to join the yakuza. (He did try to dissuade them, but these two are stubborn.) (I love Kyriu’s sideburns!!!!!!!!)

Yakuza 0 - upper floor in Dojima HQ

Look at the gorgeous woodwork! Upper floor on the Dojima HQ. (Dojima is the main Yakuza family in the zone.)

Yakuza 0 - Kuze

Kuze – one of the three top lieutenants in the Dojima family. He’s willing to do anything to get a shot at being captain. A position currently held by Kazama, Kyriu’s boss, who is currently in jail. (That ceiling is rad!)

Yakuza 0 - Kuze's tattoo

Kuze’s Yakuza tattoo – the King of Hell (Underworld). Heh heh.

Yakuza 0 - Kyriu's Yakuza tattoo

Kyriu’s yakuza tattoo – work in progress. He’s currently pretty low in the ranks.

Yakuza 0 - Tachibana Realty head

I really liked this image — the view from a top floor of one of the buildings in Kamurocho. Tachibana of Tachibana Realty is the man reflected in the window. A non-yakuza group who is also vying for control of the “Empty Lot.”

Of course, I forgot to take a shot of the login screen. Fighting skill tree pic is also probably in order. DOH!

Have a great week!

 

Virtual Tourist – Subnautica 5/12/19

Mini Movie Review

Pokemon Detective Pikachu

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pokemon Detective Pikachu – This movie was so cute! It was awesome seeing all the pokemon with actual fur, feathers, etc. The story is more complex than expected. There are lots of red herrings to keep the audience guessing. All the weird stuff, like Pikachu being understood by Tim, all have explanations. This was a fun little film. I just wish they’d given Jigglypuff more camera time! Lol.  Rating: 3.75 out of 5 (Hubby’s Rating: Worth Full Price to See Again!)

Subnautica

subnautica - giant sea creaytures

This freaked me out. You could hear moaning through the water, but seeing it was such a surprise!

subnautica - giant creature closeup

There are six or more of them, all different ages. You can tell by looking at the top carapace. This specimen is an older one. He has all sorts of plant life, coral and even some minerals on his shell.

subnautica - the underbelly of the giant beast

A picture of the beast’s underbelly. They are truly fascinating.

subnautica - sunset on an alien world

Sunset on the alien world. There is a lot of beauty here.

subnautica - glowing life form

Glowing life form. Quite beautiful. The fauna and flora changes depending on what zone you find yourself in.

subnautica - glowing plant life

Drooping Stinger – gorgeous but don’t get too close. They pack a bit of a punch. So be careful. (I also got carried away and let my oxygen get too low. Time to panic! lol.)

subnautica - burning Aurora and the moon.

The still burning Aurora and the reddish moon. 

subnautica - dry land

There is more than just water everywhere! Here’s some dry land. Rescue is imminent. A passing spaceship picked up Aurora’s distress signal.

subnatica - signs of aliens

We are not alone! A building of alien origin. Might there be alien lifeforms here as well? 

I did want to wish all the Mom’s out there a fabulous and well deserved “Happy Mother’s Day!”

Happy Mother's Day!

 

Virtual Tourist – Subnautica 5/5/19

Morning!

No mini movie review this week. Still fighting with some unspecified health issues. I’d hoped they would have figured it out by now, but no such luck. Ugh

Subnautica

New game! (For me, anyway.) It’s a survival/exploration game. Most of it is underwater. You can tone down the number of issues for your survival. I skipped needing food and water. Air seemed hard enough to contend with. 😛

The game is also a mystery story as well. Exploring and trying to find other survivors lead you to clues explaining why you are there and the reasons somethings have happened.

Subnautica - Aurora

This is Aurora a ship belonging to the Altera Corporation. For reasons unknown at the beginning, the ship is about to crash on the planet below.

Subnautica - upper hatch of survival pod

This is a pic of the upper hatch of your escape/survival pod. Half the stuff is not working and your PDA has also suffered data damage. (The PDA houses your inventory, schematics, scan data, locations, and other info.)

Subnautica - Aurora's flaming wreckage

The wreck of the Aurora. Until you get some schematics and improve your diving suit, the area is too radioactive to approach.

Subnautica - first person view

This is the underwater area just beneath the escape capsule. Gorgeous graphics! You can see your health bar and oxygen on the left. Keeping track of your oxygen is SUPER important. 🙂

Subnautica - shallow area flora

Coral, fish, and underwater plants. You have a scanner that you use to gather data. It will also let you know if there’s stuff you can make with it or if it is edible, and more.

Subnautica - escape pod

The outside of the escape pod. You can see the moon peeking behind it.

Subnautica - underwater at night

The shallow area is gorgeous at night! A lot of the plants and fish glow in the dark. So beautiful!

Subnautica - red moon

Night view from the surface of the water. Fires from the Aurora are darkening the view of the moon/planet with smoke.

Subnautica - celestial companions

Celestial companions.

Subnautica - sunrise

Sunrise on the planet. Beautiful but it has its dangers as well.

Have a great week!

Virtual Tourist – Tales of Bersaria 4/28/19

Mini Movie Review

Avengers: End Game – First off, be aware this movie is 3 hours long! It won’t feel like it, but your bladder will know. So FYI! lol. There was a lot to like about the film. Tons of emotional fodder and we get to see characters that have been gone for a while. Tons of humorous and serious moments. Some fun mixed character interactions. It’s only in the last half hour or so that the plot becomes forced as there are certain things they want to happen, regardless of the fact there are better alternatives. They also don’t take certain facts into account during least one of the time travel moments.

(SPOILERS!!!!!) – Quill getting bushwhacked on the dead planet. They totally ignore the group of bad guys who show up on the planet when he’s there. An unconscious Quill would mean a Dead Quill (by alien rats or by bad guys!). Plus the two picking up this rock would have been ambushed just like Quill. (These guys were acting separately from Thanos’ other peeps.) Doctor Strange/Iron Man – Strange wields power, and like the Ancient One, uses the Eye of Agamotto. So would he not be better able to survive or shield himself when using the five Infinity Stones? Yet that avenue is never pursued in any way. Cap’s decision at the end – while for me it was a squee moment, on further thought there’s no way he could pull it off. Would someone of his moral fiber be able to not fight crime or injustice when he could make a difference? All for selfish gain? I think not. (Plus this also gives the finger to Bucky! He gets left behind!) Also, while the moment with Falcon was very moving, but if you’re not acquainted with the comics, it seems strange, especially since he’s not done any leadership before this or has been shown to have powers of his own.

I was disturbed by the fact they held a funeral/vigil for Tony, but they did nothing for Natasha! Why did they not do both together? They knew all the same people. Why would they shut her out like that? She doesn’t get her own movie and now no sendoff either? Come on!

I was able to ignore some of this stuff way better than hubby. Just be warned! Super build up and awesomeness for convenient letdowns. Rating: 3.5 out of 5. (Hubby’s Rating: Better for Matinee. (Yeah, he was not happy! lol)

Tales of Berseria

Tales of Berseria - Inn

Some really nice details! I believe this is an Inn at Loegres.

Tales of Berseria - winter in town

A super cold winter. Not that Velvet feels it.

Tales of Berseria - crystal caves

Crystal caves. What are those exorcists up to?

Tales of Berseria - jungle type caves

Moss filled caves, almost jungle like. The goal is near.

Tales of Berseria - coast

Gorgeous coastal view! Look at that sky!

Tales of Berseria - locks

One of the many ways the Abbey is restricting the populace. Giant lock system restricting trading by ship.

Tales of Berseria - Airfried's Ship

The pirate ship Captained by Airfried. He’s currently missing, captured by the Abbey. Velvet and her companions have joined them as they have similar paths and goals.

Tales of Berseria - ships coming to port

Heading to port. Really love this ship!

Tales of Berseria - calm seas

View from port out to the open sea. Calming, isn’t it? 🙂

Tales of Berseria - church

I will say the Abbey does have some impressive churches.

Hope you have a great weekend! Till next time. 🙂

Virtual Tourist – Tales of Bersaria 4/21/19

Morning!

Mini Movie Review

Hellboy – This film is like a reboot of the Hellboy franchise. Think of it as a prequel/retelling. It’s very well done. The cast was great! While Ron Perlman did a great job in the previous two films, it has been 12 years since the last one. David Harbour picks up the mantle seamlessly. Great special effects, loads of action, even some twists and turns. Overall, it was quite enjoyable! Rating: 3.75 out of 4. (Hubby’s Rating: Worth Full Price to See Again!)

Tales of Bersaria

The big betrayal! This is where all the bad stuff truly begins.

Artorious – Velvet’s brother-in-law and mentor. Now turned murderer.

A spell in motion.

Artorious’ Malach companion. Three years later she’s seen enough of what he is doing to know he has to be stopped. She releases and is later consumed by Velvet. (Malach are a spirit race, which until recently couldn’t be seen by humans.)

Velvet is free of her jail cell, but must now fight her way out. Her only thought, revenge.

Velvet and Artorious’ Malach.

Magilou – a witch also imprisoned in the island jail. She’s an enigma of sorts. Is also hardly ever serious and loves to poke at all the members of the group. Yet there’s more to her beneath her odd facade.

A closeup of Velvet.

Typical Magilou. 😛

The first town Velvet and her new companions see after the boat they stole crash lands. Huh, I didn’t take a pic of Rokurou. 🙁

Hope you and yours have a wonderful Easter.

Virtual Tourist – Tales of Berseria 4/7/19

Morning!

Mini Movie Review

Shazam

Shazam – I will admit, though I love Zachary Levi, I wasn’t too sure how this film was going to turn out. Luckily, it more than met expectations. The kids were fantastic! Plus the film had other elements they did not touch in the previews, which made for some unexpected surprises. The movie has a lot of levity, but it also shows there’s darkness. Evil doesn’t just come from monsters. Rating: 3.75 out of 5. (Hubby’s Rating: Worth Full Price to See Again.)

Tales of Berseria

This is a Japanese console game that has been converted for PC. You have the option of both English and Japanese for the voice-overs, which is nice. Unlike some games out there that have been brought to PC, they did an excellent revamp on this one.

I’ve not played this type of game before, where you have multiple characters that fight in a group, and you switch and maintain all of them. But the learning curve hasn’t been too bad. 😛

Tales of Berseria

This is Velvet. The start screen goes through a small sequence and she walks towards you as the game loads.

Tales of Berseria

There is a demon blight that has spread across the land. One that turns people into monsters. Monsters that attack everyone around them.

Tales of Berseria - Velvet's village

This is Velvet’s village. She lives here with her brother-in-law and her younger brother.

Tales of Berseria - forest

This is the forest just outside her village. The graphics are lovely. The little figure on the lower right means there’s a dialogue sequence you can start by pressing ‘T’.

Tales of Berseria - ruins

A set of ruins past the forest. They sit a top a cliff overlooking the ocean. It is here that bad things will happen and alter Velvet forever.

Tales of Berseria - night at village

Velvet’s home at the village. Places you can enter have the blue dotted ring at the entrance.

Tales of Berseria

Inside Velvet’s home. That’s her younger brother, Laphiset. He’s a little sickly, but very bright. Velvet is rather overprotective of him.

Tales of Berseria - ocean

Lovely view, no? Laphiset wants to see the world! Velvet just wants him safe.

Tales of Berseria - closeup of Velvet

A touching moment with her brother.

Tales of Berseria - ceremony

That night, however, is when everything changed…

Have an awesome week!

Virtual Tourist – GRIS 3/10/19

Well, between the health stuff, company merger, and daylight’s savings time, my plans today were put in peril. But I will persevere!

Mini Movie Review

Captain Marvel – Depending on who you are and how deep you are in comic book fandom will make a HUGE difference on what you’ll think about this film. It’s a popcorn flick, entertaining with a lot of cute moments. As long as you don’t look below the surface, it’s enjoyable. Seeing a young Coulson totally did it for me. 😛 I thought Brie Larson did a great job. There’s been a lot of flack about her not being able to act, but I didn’t see that. If anything, I have to give her kudos for not just acting with words and expressions but her whole body. Carol Danvers’ confident and easy attitude screams from the character just by how she walks down a corridor after the first escape.

While the errors regarding canon are many and various, some of the other problems were just lazy. For example, the Skrull Talos spoke like some punk out of the ’80s and ’90s when, if you take into account the timeline as presented, he had not yet spent much if any time on Earth. (If he had, there would have been several critical bits of information he would have already known about and therefore made the movie moot!). Another big one was with regards to the Kree. All Kree have blue skin, and all the movies and TV shows have presented them that way. The only exception is sometimes some have patches of pure white skin (which makes them looked down on). Rather than try to come up with a plausible reason to tell Carol why her skin was different, they just turned half the Kree population Caucasian. Lazy.

If you can ignore stuff like that, you should enjoy the film. It had a nice pace, cool effects, excellent combat sequences, and Goose. I did love that they let the Skrulls have their super funky chins. Rating: 3.25 out of 4 (Hubby’s Rating: Worth Full Price of Admission.)

Virtual Tourist – GRIS

GRIS - flower gardens

The gardens are a wonderful area. It is also where you pick up the ability to SING!

GRIS - the power to sing

Singing affects things and is also visual. The rings you see here are from her voice. It also makes flowers bloom!

GRIS - garden

Love the luscious colors.

GRIS - fog

The unknown. Look a the gorgeous pastels!

GRIS - garden hallway

An underwater hallway in the gardens. You can’t sing as a fish.

GRIS - flip zone

The bush is made of water, so I can swim in it. The yellow line flips the gravity. Gliding past the top drops you up to the floor/ceiling of the other side. Lol.

GRIS - moonlit garden

I love the colors, the implied textures, even the depths.

GRIS - final song

A half inverted area and major singing spot.

GRIS - meeting the self

The star path to the meeting the tortured self.

GRIS - a tomb

It is just darn pretty!

Hope you’ve been staying warm out there. Winter is still trying to hang on, but it is a losing battle. 😛

Virtual Tourist – GRIS 1/27/19

Greetings!

It feels like forever since I’ve done a post. To say 2019 has so far been an insane roller coaster ride is an understatement. Between gallbladder surgery, year-end/ at work, the audit, some medical scares with hubby, and more, my tray has been more than filled. I am ready for things to slow down!

I did get a steam card for Christmas, so I bought several games to keep me occupied. GRIS is a platform game in 2D with lovely visuals, many giving a 3D impressions. It’s filled with puzzles and colorful changing vistas and no words. One neat thing about the game (aside from its evil imagination and lovely presentation) is how things that are a hindrance in some sections you end up having to use to help you finish puzzles!

GRIS

GRIS beginning

You begin the game just as you see above. No explanations.

GRIS landscape

You wander through a desolate landscape.

GRIS flying creature

Loads of interesting fauna and flora.

GRIS discovering RED

Once you find some stars and are able to follow the path, you will discover the color red.

GRIS - RED

You find yourself in a harsh and angry land. Yet one still filled with beauty.

GRIS columns

There are neat formations everywhere. The one constant in all the lands are the various statues of a woman crying.

GRIS duality

Neat images like this one abound.

GRIS weeping

Emotionally moving images abound.

GRIS discovering Green

Once you discover Green, the more colorful the world becomes. Each color discovered adds new depths to the surroundings.

GRIS spiritual bird

This large bird recurs many times and is one of the giant animals spurring the girl forward. It isn’t always friendly.

The music in the game is also lovely. It enhances the mood and even hints at coming changes. A super imaginative game, leaving you stumbling around much as the main character is, yet with discovery and wonder around every corner.

I hope 2019 is treating you well!