One thing i thought about creating was some kind of small and short video where i show the comic and maybe do some sort of story introduction. But i never really dared to do it, until this month.
So, i tried my luck with two comics, and i am honest even if they are absolute low quality (i have no idea of editing ^^), i kinda like how they came out
Replay by NotImportant
Final Light by BraveHeartTatsumaki
If you never heard of their work, please check it out
As always, I try to avoid spoilers as much as I can and if you like these comics please consider supporting these creators in any way you can.
So, let’s get started.
Sprinter by Marowe/Isto
A few months ago, I was going through some tweets of different artists and there I saw a small post from Michael Sexton, the creator of Everblue (a comic I covered last year). This was a Shout Out for a small comic called Sprinter that started a short while back (February 2017). Created by Marowe and written by Isto caught my eye immediately because just from the first shot I saw, this was a very unique looking comic, and so it was a no-brainer for me to check this one out and what I found was a one in a kind creation.
Sprinter tells the story about…Sprinter. A girl who was supposed to save a world but fled the life she was raised in and on her escape, stumbles into an adventure, where she will have to face the consequences of her actions.
Now Sprinter is still a very young story, so this will be more a first impression from my side, but don’t be fooled, there is already a lot to talk about.
Like I said in the beginning, this little story captured my interested in its very unique looking art style – and boy what Marowe created here is Stunning. The comic is mostly drawn in a black/white/grey style with a lot of shading. There are parts that are more basic and other parts very detailed – what especially looks amazing are the night scenes.
But what makes it very unique in my eyes is the way colors are used. Yes, there are colors, believe it or not, but they aren’t used in the way “Because there are always colors”. Every character has her or his own color that is used in specific parts, like hair and clothes and makes for a very interesting contrast.
One of the best things about the art is the way the characters and the world are designed. The world has this cyberpunk, wasteland, western feeling to it – something that’s right up my alley, and even the characters all have their very unique style and design – even characters in the background never feel like they were just copy and paste figures that were put there to make crowded scenes. And not only this – the expressions of the characters are great. You always see how the characters feel and in what state they are, something I always love, especially in non-talking parts or during action scenes.
So now you know that I am already a fan of the art, but what do I think about the story and the characters?
Let’s start with the characters because this is a little bit easier for me (as someone who places characters always at first position). Short answer – the characters are great, and I really enjoy and love them. Long answer: I was really surprised when I started reading Sprinter. The story mostly follows the characters through the story and we only get some small parts about them and their story, but through their actions and (like I already said) their expressions we very quickly get to know them. You start loving characters, you start understanding or even hating them (ok, this is a little bit harsh, because I believe that not everything here is as black and white at it might be on the surface). And yes, they are all memorable – I can still remember all the characters that were introduced (I still remember the Innkeeper).
Yes, just from following the characters this is a very strong contender to become one of my favorites, especially now with the start of Chapter 2 and the introduction of the character of Lirica – I meant she is only there for a few pages, but already I want to know more about here, not because from the story point of view, but because the way the character was introduced and shown.
Now let’s talk about the story – no don’t be afraid, I won’t say anything bad about it – it's just, for the moment I can’t say too much about it. We are still at the beginning, and the story is for the moment just the escape of Sprinter and what she encounters on her way.
So, does this mean I don’t like it? Oh no… I love it, even if it doesn’t sound this way (my favorite Story is just a road trip). I just enjoy these kinds of stories that begin in a slow way and over time we get to a whole different or bigger story – even if we would just follow Sprinter through this world without something big happening I would continue reading it because we have strong characters, an interesting world, and great ideas.
I highly recommend checking out Sprinter – If it continues the way then it will become a big name – I have high hopes for it.
Updates every Saturday
Four Leaf by Lumaga aka Lucia Martinez Galdona
Once in a while, you cross paths with a comic, that at first glance is something you might just check out for curiosity even if it's not up your alley. You start reading it, and then there is the point where it just slaps you in your face and you continue and read it until you caught up in one sitting – for me Four Leaf by Lumaga was such a comic.
Ok I admit this is a very dramatic start, but I am not lying when I say, that at first glance this isn’t a comic I would normally read and because of one very specific scene at the beginning the creator showed me, that there is more here than meets the eye (pun was accidental) and she is able to throw you a curveball you didn’t expect.
What is it about? I am honest I don’t like to tell too much about it because its best to go into it blind, but in short: Four Leaf tells the story about Lupe, a 16 year old girl, who never was able to adapt to her life. But after meeting Lina her life starts to get quite weird.
I know this sounds very wage, but believe me when I tell you, it’s a lot of fun discovering the whole situation in the same speed as our main character. Lumaga did an amazing job balancing everything out in a way, that the reader never feels lost and wants to know how everything continues. Also seeing that she is able to play with you, because she avoids the obvious conclusions.
But what I really enjoy are the characters (especially Lina) and the world with its lore. It’s really interesting how she works with the characters. At first glance, they seem very normal, but after looking beyond their surface, this is where the fun begins, and I am looking forward what these characters come up with. What I like is that our characters have also characteristics that keep coming up (like Lupe´s way to introduce herself).
Also, the lore is very interesting. Its this kind of familiar world and themes mixed with something new. The factions, what is Gloom, what is the Dragonfly, why is Lina the way she is? We are still at the surface, but I am really interested where this all will go.
Of course, the story is only one part of a comic, there is also the point of how it's drawn. And I am honest with you, the art wasn’t what drew me in. And just to get this out there: I don’t say its bad, it's just not my cup of tea. So now that this is out of the way I can say what I really think about it.
I like it. No really, after I started reading it, It very quickly grew on me. I love the character design, I love the “comic” design paired with a lot of details, I enjoy the coloring, the way how the bright colors are used, and the design even works in the more darker parts of the comic and believe me when I say it can get dark.
So, do I recommend it? Absolutely. It was a real surprise for me. There is still a lot that has to be uncovered, but let’s face it, it's still a young comic out there. It started in September 2016, but from just the first chapters and the introduction of the characters, there is so much potential. I won't lie, it might not be for everyone, but take a look. It’s a very fun ride.
Read Four Leaf at
Lumaga on Deviantart
Updates every Tuesday and Thursday
I hope you enjoyed this small look at two webcomics. And maybe you found something new. If you would like to see more short opinions, let me know, and I might continue writing about some.
Thank You for reading, and always remember supporting your favorite artists in any way you can.
Today i wanted to write about something a little bit different. My idea: to show, that everyone, even such untalented people like myself can create a character and how, over time, even a simple idea can become something you fall in love with
So, this isn’t an instruction to how to do it, it's more just my story how my OC was created and evolved over time, and a way to show people who might struggle with an idea, not to give up and who are maybe afraid showing what they created, not to fear.
And yes, I admit, I have no real life when I took so much time thinking about something like this
So, let me introduce you to my OC Crystal Sakura / Zaephyr Fox
You can read her Bio
Crystal Sakura - OCWork in Progress (its in a very rough state) - for more information please read the information below
Real Name: Crystal Sakura
Hight: 1,65 m
Animal Form: Fox
Hight: 1,79 m
Hair Color: Black
Eye Color: Blue
Skin Color: Warm Beige
A black cloak, a practical dark green outfit, a black leather belt for her equipment, a red crystal pendant
around her neck in form of a fox, a fox tattoo on her right shoulder, her hair reaches down her spine, She
has a scar on her left hand from a glass plate that fell on her hand from one of her first burglary, and
another one on her right tight from a trap. She is often seen with fox ears and tail.
Author note: The part with the fox ears and tail wasn't planned. But after NotImportant did a version of
her with these traits (in her Replay Style) and i liked it. I think it works with her character and so this will
be a p
or try to read the prologue of a story, I wanted to write called “The Story of a Fox and a Spirit”
The Story of a Fox and a Spirit (Working Title)Please read the Information below before reading this story!
„Hey, are you still asleep? We must start moving if we want to get through these woods before the evening. I remind you it was your idea to take this route to the city.”
Crystal slowly opens her eyes, seeing Aiko leaning over her and trying to flick her forehead. She immediately roles to the side while Aiko loses her balance and plunges her into the makeshift bed.
Crystal laughs as she sees the fox spirit lying there in a very undignified pose. “That was mean!” Aiko shouted trying to get back on her feet while letting her ears hanging down. “This was your own fault. How many times have I told you not to try this.” Crystal replies.
Aiko just pouts while looking away. Crystal knows she doesn’t mean it bad. She just hadn’t had company for a long time and especially no one who would try to stand against her or view her as someone equal and not just a higher be
When my OC was created, I never really thought that she would be more than just a few written lines on a piece of paper. Between 2002 and 2005 I was in a group who tried their luck with some pen and paper role-playing games. We started with some normal board games and also Warhammer 40k but later wanted to try out some games like D&D and Shadowrun. But I am honest with you, we never really played them, more we experimented with the rulebooks and were more into creating scenarios. I played a little bit with character sheets but was never really happy with just throwing some things together.
This was already the time I was more into deeper characters and was interested to create a player character and not only give a little bit more backstory, but also one that wasn’t already overused.
Now my idea was to create a more Rogue/Thief like character and I struggled a lot with it in the beginning, because one thing I wanted for this character was, that he or she wasn’t an asshole but also not a Robin Hood like character. This character should have some kind of selfish side, but also be someone who would stand up partly against injustice. Also, she or he should be more of a kind of lone wolf, but if you gain this one’s trust, they would fight alongside you.
I think some of you will now, just from my description already see where my problems were – there was a lot to avoid so this character wouldn’t become just a copy of some other character. But the first thing I had to decide was what gender my first character would have. I thought a female would work best with what I had planned.
So, I had to find a good way to combine the ideas I had for her, with a backstory that made sense and not let people think about other (maybe even copyright) characters. But first I had to find a name for her and also there should be a second name, like an artist name she is known under. With the second one I had not so many problems, but her main name brought me near to a break down (don’t take it to serious ). I had some names in my head, but with some, It just didn’t make click and others just were too strange. I can't remember anymore why in the end I went with “Crystal Sakura” but it took me a while I think I had some idea about her parents naming her after two specific things – it’s one part I might have to think about again ^^
Her artist name was a little bit easier, but I would lie if it was the first name I came up with
Now I should mention, that I wanted to do something a little bit different with my character. One thing you normally should do when creating a character (at least I personally think this should be done) is giving the character a reason why she or he is traveling through the land or doing what they do. And for my character, I had this idea that she was some kind of Lycanthrope. Not the evil version out of the mainstream media, more someone who knows what she is and how to use it and maybe try to find out more about how she became this.
So, her first version was called Zaephyr (a word I found through a song from Luca Turilli) Wolf, who was a thief just for fun, because she loved the thrill, helps out people who she thinks got wronged and if you get on her good side, get an absolute loyal companion as long as you don’t piss her off.
Sadly, our group broke up a few months later and I never was able to use her in a game. I through most of the things I had from this time away, where I knew it couldn’t be used anymore – lets face it most of the things we agreed on where house rules that only could be used by us – but I couldn’t delete her, I already put so much time thinking about her (even if I didn’t write a big backstory or something like this) she really grew on me.
Over the next years, I always had her on my hard drive. I had no one who played any pen & paper games I might have tried to use her, but she started to become a character I started to create in RPG video games.
This was also the time I started to fiddle a little bit more with her and not only tried to design her appearance but also started to write a real backstory for her. I just felt it was time to do a little bit more with her, and so I started to take some time and thought about her life.
My first step was looking where she came from. I still wanted her to be a thief, but how did she come to this profession? The idea that came to mind was, that she was an athletic person, and this had to come from somewhere. So, the idea of a performer of a traveling circus was born. This worked in many ways because it not only explained part of her talent but also how her name was chosen (her parents might get the idea from different parts of the world) but also why she had an artist name. I thought why not let her grow up in this place but being someone who just had a free spirit and one day left this life, but with everyone knowing – so I avoided some tropes that you would normally see in these cases
Now I had the first part of her origin but how did she become a thief? This was not that hard, because I had this idea where she wanted to teach someone a lesson. And this brought another idea. I didn’t want to create a perfect character, I wanted to have someone who makes errors and can be a little bit hot-headed. So, her first burglary was something that failed in a big way. But this was the turning point where she started to train and become the thief she is now.
We know now where she is from and how she became a thief but what is with the Lycanthrope story part? I would lie when I say this wasn’t again a part where I had to wrap my head around. I had two problems with this: 1. I didn’t want her to become one through getting bitten or scratched, I wanted to find another way and 2. I wasn’t really anymore sure if I use a wolf form for her – in my eyes, it just didn’t match with her character. So, what should I do?
But through sheer luck I found a solution, and this was even better than my first idea. At the time I was reading a story about a kitsune character that not only gave me the idea to change her animal form from Wolf to Fox, but also create a second character that she was somehow connected to. And so not only her name was changed to Zeaphyr Fox but also the fox spirit Aiko was born. And with it the idea that she was transformed through a contract that was made through a pendant.
And so slowly her Bio page was created
At this point I will admit I never really thought about showing this character to anyone or that it even will become something more or that there would be even another big change in her design and character coming. I was happy with her and she went back to her place on my hard drive.
Some time passed again, and something happened. I got the possibility to appear as a character in a panel in a future issue of “The Beast Legion”. Now I was not very keen on been myself there, so I asked the creator Jazyl Homavazir if he would have a problem to use my character for this - I am honest I was really sure if he is ok with that – lets face it he is a comic writer and is already working a lot with fictive characters, but he said yes and so the first drawn version of her was created
Now I was really happy about this. Seeing your character for the first time drawn in some way.
But this wasn’t what sparked her next evolution – this took nearly another year. Again, through some luck I got a drawing from NotImportant (Creator of Replay) in a way that would fit into the world she created. Believe me, when I say that this was one really amazing opportunity (for me at least) and this was the second time I gave my small description of Crystal out. And this is what NotImportant did with her
People who have read my small journal entry about kemonomimi
Why Kemonomimi?One thing i interestingly get asked a lot, at least every time I talk with someone about my favorite fictional characters, is, why my top three all have animal traits and if I am someone with a fetish (this makes it even harder to deny when they know my OC ^^)
To be honest, this really is just pure coincidence, but against what everyone might think, this isn’t why I love these characters this much.
So, what is it what fascinates me so with the characters:
Holo/Horo from Spice and Wolf – created by Isuna Hasekura
Caster (Tamamo no Mae) from Fate/Extra – created by Nasu Kinoko/Kazuya Niinō
know how I feel about them, and yes, I had tears in my eyes seeing her in this form created by one of my favorite creators out there. And this was the point where I was thinking about not only going for the silver fox variation but also thinking about going for this design. What do I mean with that? I was thinking about giving Crystal the idea that she liked this form in some way and run with it when she is alone. And so her fox ears and tail where added to her design.
And now you can find her in this design in many different versions from different artists in my gallery (and there are still some coming in the future – because I started to collect all these interpretations from my favorite artists )
I am still NotImportant thankful, not only that she drew her but also gave me the most obvious idea that I have never seen because it was directly in front of me So yes, this was the short story of how my character was created and how her evolution was over time. I know this is a bad story, and my character might not be that interesting for many people, but like I said, this was more the idea to show people to never hide their work. Even if you are the only one who likes your creation, this is something no one can take from you. I had to learn this the hard way, but I am happy that I found people who kicked me in the butt for this.
And even if I might never finish writing my story, I have it in my head and know how my characters live their life
So thank you for reading this overly long ramble and I hope to see you next time
So many things can change over time. I just got this lovely rendition of her by Claarin and this brought me back to continue writing small stories with her. I am not sure if i will make them public, but there will be more of her, i just can't let her go
It’s time for another „Artist Shout Out”
If you missed one of the previous ones, you can check them out here:
Artis Shout-Out by a Nobody #1 - DarkRinoa88 and Rosuuri
Artis Shout-Out by a Nobody #2 - DAV-19, chinchongcha and Nitako
So, let’s begin, and as always, if you like these artists, please consider supporting them in any way you can (tell other people about them, comment, tip, Patreon, Ko-Fi etc.):
This artist was somehow mentioned to me - and i am absolutely thankful to the person who did it I was pointed in the direction of this lovely commission work KawaiiNhongo because i said one of my favorite things are works of Kemonomimi and they thought i might enjoy this. And they were right, I enjoy everything about this drawing the pose, the smile the number of details on the kimono. Of course, i had to check out the other work of this artist.
And i wasn't disappointed what i found in her gallery. There are some amazing drawing in there. And what i really admire is how she plays with perspectives like in 8/31 or Everdistant Utopia. But also her work with colors, going from really dark drawings like Innocent Monster to Sunshine Mikon!. ANd one thing she really pulls of are facial expressions.
Drawings i recommend checking out are Fox Pop, Ready for War, Green Snipe Shooter, Yuri and Esther, Mumyou Sandan-Zuki or The Mad King.
While browsing through some different categories on DA i stumbled upon this little piece called Snow Night. And if you think liked this because of the obvious, you would be wrong, this was just the thing that sealed the deal for me Joke aside, i really love the feel of this drawing, i know this sounds strange, but seeing this brought up a warm and happy feeling and a smile. I love the way its framed, i like the motion in it, the way the colors work and that smile is just cute. Again it was a no-brainer, to check out the gallery of this artist.
And what i found in her gallery was amazing. SHe is a very talented artist who is very flexible with her art styles. What i mean with this, is, that she is able to draw something bright and lovely like Rose Feelings, going very dark with Dripping Identity and coming back with something like ChuB 2B And i really like how much feeling she is able to give with every drawing she puts out.
But what i think, she is really amazing in, is her work on character design sheets. This is something i know not many artists really do or only once or twice, but she has a whole gallery of sheets she did, and they are something you definitive check out. ORAziri, Trinity, Electric WashiTapeAdopt or (my favorite) Gno*Sah Spellcat Protocol just to name a few.
Some other works i would check out are Everything will be ok, Rin`s Memories, Fierce Angel, From Ashes and Who Am I?
And she is even a great person to talk to, thanks again for our little conversation
While going through the "Undiscovered" section on DA i stumbled upon a little picture called Desert Night. This one caught my interest because it has another thing i really am a fan of: backgrounds. And here i really loved the combination of the colors, the pose of the girl and the sunset in the back.
And of course, by now you know the drill i went to the gallery to check out other pieces. This artists style is working with background, light, and color and created a lot of very atmospheric drawings. Last Day of School, Daybreak Theater, Solitude or Reflection just to name a few.
But i also like how the artist is able to bring this kind of atmosphere into the not so background heavy works like Snowflake v2, Over the Horizon, Senbonzakura (one of my favorites ) or Yamato and Garurumon.
And this is also an artist that is really great to talk to, we had a nice conversation behind the scenes
And i am looking forward to seeing more of all of these artists in the future.
I hope i could show you some new artists who you haven't heard of and maybe found someone new to follow - See you next time
Visions of Atlantis - New Dawn
In Extremo - Feuertaufe
Luca Turilli - Warriors Pride
Livetune - Last Night, Good Night (REialed) Live
Freedom Call - Among the Shadows
Beyond the Black - Nevermore
But I will tell you this:
I am not here to change the mind of people or keep people away from these titles or even to be different than others out there. Some of these games I really wanted to like, but after they were over I just was pissed off or they even angered me while playing them. I have played a lot of bad games in my life, but these games were the ones that always come to mind when I think about this category.
It's just my personal opinion, please accept this😉
So, let’s begin with three side mentions – I had fun with these games until a specific point or there was something added I absolute hated, so these don’t really belong on this list, but I wanted to talk about this in some way, and I thought it would fit here best):
Deus Ex: Human Revolution + Director´s Cut - Trailer
I really hadn’t high hopes for this game when it was announced – I was still pissed about the second part and what nearly became a third game (Project: Snowblind *shudder*), that I really lost all hope to play a game that reached me the way the first part did. But this game was amazing, if, yes if there weren’t these absolute shite boss battles – god I was nearly throwing the game away when the first fight came, and I was completely leveled and fitted for stealth, but I went through it – even if it was tough. But these really pissed me off.
Then there was the Standalone DLC “Missing Link” and god was this awful, I wasn’t able to play through it, but I said to myself this wasn’t really part of the game, so I ignored it.
Until, they added it to the Directors Cut version (I think you were able to skip it, but man I hated this DLC (I played through it non-the less. And I was absolutely happy they changed the boss fights a lot. So, for me, this game is a lot of fun even if it had some really, really bad parts to it.
Mass Effect 1+2 - Trailer
Yes, these games on two lists seem strange but again let me explain. In the first game, that wasn’t really perfect but held my interest because of its great story, the Mako sequences were horror, but to see everything you had to fight with this “thing” over the planets – at some point you just adapted to its awfulness but really, I was always sitting there and was dreading the next part, but they couldn’t kill the fun I had with this game.
The second game was a lot better and I never had really anything bad I was shouting against the screen until I played the DLC packs – What happened here? Some of them were playable but most of them were shit, especially the one that nearly killed the game completely for me because of its ending: The Arrival – oh my god was I shouting after seeing this one, it didn’t make any sense over the whole story, you tried to save everyone and now you are responsible for killing everyone, even if it was someone else? You saved the universe already two times by now and now you are a killer? What? – let’s just say, this whole thing was BS. – but it didn’t really belong to the main game (for me) so I still love the games.
Dishonered + DLCs - Trailer
So, this game is a little bit different. I played it because a lot of people who know what I love to play really said I would love this one. I tried it out and was shocked. I was pissed off a lot of times, because as a stealth player, there was a lot what didn’t work – bodies disappeared, bodies were found through the wall and so on…It was a bug fest that I am still amazed I went though. Everyone wondered what I did wrong because nobody had the same experience, so maybe I should give it another try sometime, but for the moment it’s a game I really didn’t enjoy fully – except the two DLCs, where you play the assassin Daud. I really loved these two and here seemingly everything worked the way it should, so maybe I really had technical difficulties. I don’t know, I will check it out again somewhere in the future.
So now let’s come to the meat of this entry – and I should say again, this is my opinion, and yes there are worse games out there, but these stayed in my mind the longest
Bioshock + Bioshock Infinite
Let’s directly begin with a big hitter. I really wanted to love these games. I played through the first Bioshock, and I really tried to play through Infinite, but I gave up half the way. I really don’t get the praise these games get. The Story is really not that great in my opinion, the level design is boring and parts, where you have to backtrack a lot, are just bad designed (first no enemies then you start the mission and then they are full of them until you start the next part), boring characters….I just didn’t find anything that hooked me in these titles.
Monkey Island 4
I absolutely love the MI games. I love the humor, I love the characters and the whole world they are playing on, but part four I never enjoyed and this just because of one simple thing – the controls. They destroyed this title for me, I never were able to adapt to it ☹
I know this game is built to be bad, but I had maybe 2-3 minutes fun, and then it just got boring. There are so many videos out there where people are laughing their ass off, but I think you need to be really high to have fun with this “game”
A game that looked interesting, and that was praised for its open world, but let's be honest, this game was just the same go from A to B and kill everything on its way. It looked great I give it that, but just because the levels weren’t just a long thin corridor didn’t really make this game better than any other FPS. I also played the second game and it was just boring as hell until the last five minutes, and I also tried the third part, but still, this series doesn’t really do it for me. There are so many problems (and I am not only talking about the respawning enemies). The guns feel bad, the world feels very static. Again, just another generic shooter that looks good but has nothing behind it.
Ultima 8: Pagan
This is one of the few games I wanted to play, but never really was able to even get started. I tried it so many times, but I always died very early on. Mostly because the controls were absolute bad.
Ultima 9: Ascension
Mmh, what wasn’t told about this title already. It took me a lot to make it run, the performance was even with the right graphics card hell, the controls were bad (even for the time), the story was awful, the characters unlikeable. I never was able to finish this game
A Story about my Uncle
When I first saw this game, I was intrigued, I thought the idea with you swinging through a world from platform to platform looked great, but when I played the game I was not only disappointed but there where many parts where I hoped the story might start. Especially when you come to a cave part where you have to swing to the bottom and there is an amazing view of a frozen cave part with a whale…and then…the game just ended…just when it got really interesting and you wanted to know more about this world…everything ended.
Ah, a cheap Tower Defense with an interesting level design and way to build towers. But sadly, it just has its novelty with the tower building where you build one on the other, but like the graphics, it's just an absolute snooze fest.
Broken Sword 3
You might now know I am a big adventure fan. And one of my beloved and also hated adventures series is the Broken Sword series. But even if I hated a lot of puzzles and still really liked what they did. But this abomination? This was just torture. Again, the controls – why do we need §D adventures, why? But this time also the whole puzzles and even the story were bad. I played through it, but in the end I was so happy this was over with and I can play good games again.
Oh god, i really feel bad to have this title on here, but I just couldn’t stand it. I wanted to like it, it looked great, but I just never really could get into it, I never really found something that made click for me and at the end I was just “What did I just played?” – Maybe I have overlooked something, but I don’t know what it could have been.
I love puzzle games, especially ones where you play from the first person perspective, but this…I still don’t know what to say. It never felt like fun, the world doesn’t really look interesting, some of the puzzles are just insane…its not a game created for me. If you like hard puzzlers I would say check it out, but for me its just plain bad…. ☹
Ok people help me out here: Why do so many people like this game? I don’t get it. It plays bad (the stealth part was an absolute mess), there is no atmosphere except one specific part where you follow a glowing ball through the tunnels, the weapons feel bad, the story doesn’t really pull you in, and this ending … What?
The only game, I repeat, the only game I raged quit and threw my controller through the room – and this even in front of a couple of friends. I never finished it. I still can`t believe this, what happened? I love the first two, but this game was just awful – so many arena fights that were just an overload of enemies… I gave up in the part where you fought in the shipyard or cemetery, I can’t remember, but this was the last time I ever gave an Uncharted game a chance, this game killed the franchise for me completely.
A short and absolute mess of a game. I thought the idea wasn’t that bad, but the end result was just…wow…The story is bad, the characters are just there to be killed off, whole sequences make no sense, weapons feel bad, the shocking sequence just feels blunt, there is no real impact, and when you think it finally begins, the whole game ends. This is just an absolute mess.
Mirrors Edge: Catalyst
Ok, I have seen this coming miles away. We are talking about a game from EA and after they announced this will be an open world games and the story will be rebooted, I knew this will end in tears, but wow, I didn’t expect this travesty. I really, and I mean, really love Mirrors Edge. Its one of the best games I have played to date. The controls, the feel when you jump over the roof tops, the characters, everything feel so good. Its one of the very, very few games I have always installed, just to try out the challenges from time to time, to get better.
But this…I lost all words after playing it. What did I have experienced here? The open world doesn’t work (why do we have again a game where you have to relearn everything from scratch – I know they wanted to make it like a Metroidvania kind of game, but it doesn’t work out. After the third time backtracking, I got already bored. The characters were an absolute mess and unlikeable (and after hearing who one of the bodyguards of the main villain was I even got more pissed off), the arena fight in the hideout was terrible, why did I have to fight my way through lobbies of a hotel to get to a room….i don’t know what to say, this was one of the worst things I have experienced that stayed in my head and will stay in my head. I am just so sad to see this series will already be ended after the second part, just because they didn’t just go with everything from the first game and just continued the story in some way – I still believe the original looks amazing after all these years.
Today I will tackle my favorite indie games to date.
When I started this specific list, I saw that it’s a little bit more difficult than my triple A list, so I will have to categorize a little bit, so you know what to expect, but as in my last list, I will talk a little bit more about my favorites.
Now again, these are my picks and games I have played. This doesn’t mean these are the best or that these are for everyone, these are just again games I played they stayed in my mind since then and I want to play them from time to time again.
A small honorable mention at the start:
World of Goo - Trailer
Little Inferno - Trailer
Human Resource Machine - Trailer
I just can’t put only one of this developer’s games on this list, these are all three great in their own way, but very special and won't be for everyone. But man, what these developers are capable of world building, atmosphere, sound, and visuals – and also the gameplay is amazing. I never had so many goosebump moments in any game. If you want to try one out, I would go with World of Goo.
So, let’s begin with the first part… Tower Defense
Oh god, I am just an absolute sucker for this game mode since I came first in contact with it in Warcraft 3 and our LAN-Parties nearly become pure TD ones. Sadly, not many big companies try their luck with this genre but on the happy side many indie developers try to put their own spin on this genre and there are so many games out there, so here my favorites:
Prime World Defenders - Trailer
Fantasy TD with an interesting way to build towers and upgrade them – they tried to combine TD with a Card Collection game. Hard, especially if you are just a beginner - Singleplayer
Deathtrap - Trailer
A TD from the creators of the action RPG The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing – great fun in coop, with some interesting ideas with the cards and enemies. Sadly very, very hardware hungry – at least our systems get hot as hell
Dungeon Defenders - Trailers
A third person fantasy TD with different characters, a lot of maps, leveling system, loot, and sadly a lot of DLC, but a lot of fun alone and in coop.
Orcs must die! 1+2 - Trailer
A third person fantasy action TD with a lot of humor, great character(s), a lot of chaos, different kind of ways to tackle the maps, because you are only allowed a handful of traps
Defense Grid - Trailer
A sci-fi one, with interesting maps, neat towers, a great storyteller through the game
Bloons TD 5 - Trailer
A simple but very, very addicting game, with so many maps, play modes, multiplayer, upgrades, extras challenges – you can put quite some time in it
Another game type I really enjoy is rhythm and music games, especially ones where you can play your own library, but there are also some great ones out there with an own playlist 😉
Crypt of the Necrodancer - Trailer
Roguelike Dungeon crawler where you move and fight in the rhythm of music – who ever had this idea combining these genres – you were a genius
Chime and Chime Sharp - Trailer / Trailer
Two neat games to relax and have a little bit fun trying to fill out a playing field – good and very balanced playlist
Audiosurf - Trailer
A quick fun game where the difficulty scales a lot with your music
Symphony - Trailer
If you ever wanted to know what happens when you combine a Shootemup with a music game, then check this title out.
Beat Hazard Ultra - Trailer
Nothing for people with epilepsy – A asteroid clone that creates the playing field with your music
Now let’s see some different titles😉
Saviours - Trailer
Cheap, amazing OST, adrenalin pumping, quick, bullet-hell for beginners (I finished it😊 )
Trine - Trailer
Great physic based platformer, with amazing graphics, characters, and sound – sadly was destroyed with the newer titles☹
Cook, Serve, Delicious! - Trailer
A hectic “Remember the right order” quicktime/button mashing game – that’s more fun than it has the right to be – serious this game is addicting and absolute fun
The Turing Test - Trailer
If you love Portal, check it out – its short, but has interesting mechanics, puzzles and the ending…wow…the ending is brutal
BattleBlock Theatre - Trailer
Pure, fun, and absolute crazy platformer – especially in Multiplayer
Castle Crashers - Trailer
4-Player Coop hack and Slay with many weapons, a lot of craziness – and so much fun
Absolute Drift - Trailer
An amazing game about drifting a car around corners – great visuals, great OST and a great control scheme that takes a little while to master
Talisman: Prologue - Trailer
A really fun board game, different characters to choose and different quests to solve – also on mobile systems
Bastion - Trailer
Amazing storytelling through a Storyteller, great idea with the world building, partly a little bit unbalanced, but a fun experience
Epistory: Typing Chronicles - Trailer
A typing game that slowly raising the difficulty, interesting told story, amazing graphics (look like an origami – popup-book), great worlds
Now let’s come to my absolute beloved indie games I have played to date – again, please remember, these are just my personal choices, and I know many people won't agree with me on these.
5. 99 Spirits aka. Tsukumogami - Trailer
Ok, i admit, there won't be anyone out there who will understand why this title is here, and then so high up. TBH i can't tell it myself. This is a combination of Visual Novel with a grid-based playing field and you fight battles enemies in a hangman style game where you first have to guess what enemy it is. It's strange but its absolute fun (even when it gets repetitive from time to time). I enjoyed the characters and story and i loved how they tried to expand the gameplay with the sword and its crystals. Its a game i really can't describe, i really say try a demo out if you can and you will see what i mean.
4. Sol Survivor - Trailer
Yes, there had to be one TD in this list, and this has become Sol Survivor. But I should mention, this wasn’t from the start clear. This is a game that grew on me. The developers were putting new stuff and modes with every new patch into this game, changed and balanced it and I just got addicted over time. Its an amazing take on a TD title with so many towers, so many combination and play possibilities, different Multiplayer modes, single player story and many, many enemies. It looks good, it plays great and its something you will put a lot of time in it – if you are good, a round can go over hours 😉
3. The Stanley Parable - Trailer
Can this even be called a game? It’s a walking simulator, but one of the best. There is so much to discover, it's an absolute blast to listen to the storyteller, it has fun endings, it has sad endings, sometimes you have the feeling to find yourself on a drug trip and the next you have no clue what to say. This is an experience that I love coming back repeatedly to try to find new things - i cant tell you more because this is something you really can't explain - just watch the trailer, try out the demo and you know what i mean
2. The Talos Principle - Trailer
Yes, I love Portal, I love the characters, but I still think “The Talos Principle” is much better😉 Now before people go crazy, let me explain: I just loved the way the laser puzzles were built into the whole worlds and how there were these different areas you were puzzling through and that there was so much to discover besides the levels you were going through and also were able to stop with one and continue somewhere else. But what fascinates me, and lets me still think back is the story and world building. My god was this amazing. “What?” I hear people asking. When you read all the emails and info parts that were lying around talking with the console etc. you were sucked into a world and the end of a world – there are still parts I can’t get out of my head because they were like a punch to the guts. And I still can’t believe this game came from the developers of the fun Serious Sam series. But don’t make a mistake thinking this game is easy – it begins this way, but to reach the real end, your head will start smoking, but all the levels are beatable.
And my number one indie game I still can't believe I absolute love, and that always come to mind when I think indie:
1. Dust: An Elysian Tail - Trailer
The first thing I should admit: I am not a big fan of platformers (you might have guessed of my lists until now😉 ) and I have no idea why I tried this one out. But I am so glad I did. It's incredible what only one person was able to create. This platformer has amazing hand-drawn graphics, beautiful motion, and animations, absolute perfect controls (I never felt like I am not in control), love the story even if it’s a little bit short, amazing audio – it's just an absolute masterpiece in my eyes. And I still believe its one of the very, very few games that deserve all the hype it gets.
See you next time to the list of games I hate – I have to prepare myself for all the angry mails I will get for this one
Oh, and before someone misses a small title called VA-11 Hall-A (Trailer) - this will come on an extra list, because i will do shortly after my worst list a small Visual Novel list, and i think this deserves an extra spot there
Because i talk a lot about indie games - there are amazing ones out there that people should really check out and that there is more than part XXXX of games like Cod or AC - sometimes i get the question "What are my favorite games out there?"
I am honest with you, i really played a lot of games since i began and acquired a very "special" taste, so i never really wanted to talk about this. But because 2018 will be a side channel where we will cover indie games, its time to go over this.
Now, this won't be a very in deep look at them. This will be more just a list of the games i played over these past years that i love going back to (going through them more than one time) and that just won't go out of my head for different reasons. So there will be mostly only the name, trailer (if possible) and just some short point i like about these games. Also, this will be divided into 3 parts, today we look at games from the big names in the company, next time we cover indie games and in the third part we cover all the games i dont like or absolut loathe.
Please keep in mind, i just say these are the games i personally think are good or bad - if you have a different opinion, that's great, i am not here to change your mind, but please also allow my own opinion - Thank you
So let's begin with two honorable mentions:
Planetarian ~The Reverie of a little planet~ - Trailer
So this is a Visual Novel so just a very short read and not really a game, but my god is this an absolutely amazing story. This is one of the very few times a story made me cry and this one deserves every praise it gets.
Lucas Arts Adventures - Monkey Island, India Jones, Sam & Max, Maniac Mansion, Day of the Tentacle etc
Sorry, i just can't decide which of these games deserve more praise - they are all amazing and still hold up so many years after they were released. If you have never played one of these titles - do it now! Most of them are cheap and also partly in remaster version available.
Now to the meat of this list (there is no particular order):
Need for Speed: Most Wanted The first one - Trailer
Cheesy Story with bad effects (B-C movie quality), great map and tracks (you quickly remembered all the ways), amazing feeling when chased by the cops, feeling of speed and car handling - there were so many good points that the bad rubberband AI couldn't kill the fun
1nsane - Trailer/Intro
A fun Multiplayer Offroad Racer - not only races but also things like capture the flag and other game modes you know from FPS games, very quick and arcady, graphic was very basic, but for this kind of game more then acceptable, a blast if you get a handful of people together to play it.
FlatOut 2 - Trailer
Great physic for an arcade racer, great graphics and destruction model (cars and environment), great speed, good soundtrack, absolute fun mini-games, a blast in Multiplayer
Rollercoaster Tycoon - Trailer (mobile phone version)
I am not a fan of these kinds of games, but this one was easy to learn and had so many great things to keep you playing and trying to conquer all the parks - fun coaster creator and a lot of fun to experiment with all of the attractions
Ground Control - Trailer
Great tactical strategy game - interesting idea with the squads and the way of upgrades and how open you were with your unit choice before the beginning of a mission, also a good told story
Command & Conquer - Red Alert - Trailer
Different factions with different units and campaigns, the movies, such great bad quality , a soundtrack you cant get out of your head (try getting Hell March out, i dare you ^^), fantastic maps and quick gameplay with base building, easy to use map editor and fun Multiplayer
Battlefield 1942 - Trailer/Intro
A still fun Multiplayer shooter where you try to conquer spawn points, fun maps, and even playable in SIngleplayer because of bots, fun vehicles and good weapon handling, still fun to play on a LAN
Half Life - Trailer
great designed FPS, great world (except the end), interesting level ideas for the time, storytelling (the story wasn't that great but it was fantastically staged at the time), mod support (Sven-Coop, Firearms, Counterstrike), Multiplayer
Remember Me - Trailer
interesting concept and really fantastically told story, the world, likable characters (not your typical black and white ones), gameplay, and controls were a little bit hit and miss and it was short
Uncharted 1/2 - Trailer (UC2)
great staged story, loveable characters, good balance between adventure and gunplay, adventure part with puzzles, great graphics, and soundtrack, amazing voice actors, good controls, maps
Enslaved: Odyseey to the West - Trailer
Amazing world, story starts slow but gets better over the course of this road trip, characters (even if you need to play the DLC to appreciate one in particular), designs
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Trailer
Dragons, big world with a lot to discover, many things to do besides the main quests, modding, Add-Ons, Dragons, the leveling system, factions, F*** Dragons (sorry i am just a sucker for them ) - its a good title with a lot of flaws but does a lot of good things you can overlook the bad stuff
Fallout 2 - Trailer/Intro
fantastic immersion, great RPG elements, turn based gameplay, world
Jagged Alliance 2 - Trailer
amazing characters, inventory/crafting system, turn based gameplay, world
Alpha Protocol - Trailer
Spy story, choices, and outcomes, ways how to tackle the missions, RPG elements, characters - has its problems but is a lot of fun if you like stealth games
No One Lives Forever 1/2 - Trailer
Characters, Gadgets, Humor, Story, Gameplay, Levels - god one of the very few games i just can't say what i found bad except the vehicle controls, but the rest was amazing
Mass Effect 1/2 - Trailer
Story, choices and outcomes, characters
Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth1 - Trailer
Characters (not deep but memorable and loveable), the sheer craziness, the dungeons (yes they are more of a grind fest but if you like this kind of gameplay you will have a lot of fun leveling up) and trying to get all the secrets and secret bosses.
Fate/Extra - Trailers
characters, the world (love the idea of having a sort of Matrix-style world in the moon), the story (yes its a battle royale but its told interesting, i love these kinds of dungeon crawlers, i love the Type-Moon stuff
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to a Past - Trailer
graphics, gameplay, adventure, items, theme - its freaking Zelda..what is there more to say
Diablo 2 + Add-Ons - Trailer
Amazing gameplay, random levels, fantastic characters with different skill trees, Multiplayer, movies, lenght, items/collecting - one of Blizzards best games, still amazing today (especially on LAN parties)
GTA: Sand Andreas - Trailers
The world, all the things you can do, crazy characters, handling of cars/control - there are some missions and the start that might scare people away (it took me three tries to get through the beginning) but when the world opens this is amazing.
Mirror`s Edge - Trailer
The design, the world, the characters, the feeling of control, the levels, controls - its an amazing title, i am so shocked they destroyed it with the new part
The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky - Trailer
The world, the battle system, the characters, the way the story is told (i love the road trip concept) length, the way the characters change over the course of the story, soundtrack, graphics
Anachronox - Trailer
Story, Characters, the sheer craziness of the whole worlds and situations (where else can you have a whole planet in your team as a playable character), so many things to discover - the game doesn't have the best graphics and is hard as hell in specific places but its still worth a look if you love turn-based RPG games where you never know whats around the next corner and where also the story changes at some places depending which characters you have with you
Valkyria Chronicles - Trailer
Amazing Artstyle, fantastic gameplay with changing rules, great story, amazing characters (i love, especially in the DLC, that you never feel like all of the characters are strictly bad or good and everyone has an agenda), the partly turn-based and real-time system feels great, love the upgrading system with its different pros and cons, soundtrack
Ok, i wasn't fully honest with you at the beginning - yes this list isn't really a top list except for these three games. The following three titles are the for me most beloved games to date (and yes one just was released this year - what absolutely surprised me) - so let's take a look at my personal top three games:
3. Freelancer - Trailer
Even if it doesn't look like it, i am a sucker for great sci-fi space flight games, but most of them that were released after the great time of Wing Commander were ok or had many flaws. But then one day Microsoft released a little title called "Freelancer". This one did many things differently and many hardcore fans were taken of because they changed the controls from joystick to mouse and this was something not everyone was happy with. For me, i didn't care, i jut was happy to have another space flight sim. And wow this one was a big surprise: After a very linear start you get into the open world part and this blew me away - you were able to go everywhere and were able to discover so many things in the deeps of space, space stations to buy and sell, wormholes, pirates, big and small ships - you could become a trader or a bounty hunter, the story was amazingly staged and the characters were great. The ships all handled differently and you were able to fit them in every way you wanted with weapons. There was also an interesting Multiplayer mode where you can do what you wanted - the whole universe was your playground. They had also integrated a faction system that actually worked - you could become friends with some and enemies with others - this changed also where you were able to land or who attacked you. We played this for years and still discovered new things. Later with mods it got even better. To this day its still a game i highly recommend if you get your hands on it, because even for someone who never touched a flight simulator this game is easy to learn and master.
2. NieR: Automata - Trailer
the only new game in this list. I never heard of this game until 3-4 month before release and only because i saw someone play a demo of the beginning, and this captured my interest. I loved the design, i love the movement of the characters, i loved the way it switched between the fight against this massive enemy (which also was something i loved). This was what let me do something i swore never to do again: Preorder. And after receiving it, i never regretted it. This game is amazing in so many ways: Graphics, sound, story, the way the story is told even over the end, the secrets, the gameplay, the change in playstyles, the soundtrack, the art styles... This game is a masterpiece in my eyes. You never know what will happen, they surprise you the whole way. Beleive when i say: If you are a gamer buy this game and play it blind and don't be fooled when you reach your first end - Its a game where every word just takes away parts of the experience - and this is a heck of roller coaster ride. I am honest i never expected that a game will arrive in this age of gaming that would rival my all time favorite to date, but this one nearly did it.
And now the best game i have played to date:
Deus Ex - Trailer
Yes, the original Deus Ex. A game that was so advanced and ahead of its time, that many people where overwhelmed and didn't know what to do when it was released. At this time we were in a gaming age were we mostly had straightforward games - go from A to B and kill or talk with everyone in one way. Now there was a game where even the tutorial (on of the best ones out there in my opinion) was more complex then you think and even there where already secrets hidden. A game where the world changes depending on your actions (yes you were able to change things even if they at first glance looked like you wanted to break the game, but they thought about this - kill a character specific points, the game remembers that - you find a body lying around, ignore it or check it out, it could lead to two different outcomes). You could play it guns blazing, you could use stealth - there were always multiple ways. I play it nearly every year once, and i am not sure if i already found everything in this games. I would even go so far, that we have nothing really similar today, most games are even dumbed down. Also, the story never seem to end If you love conspiracy stories, you love FPS RPGs then for the love of god, check out this diamond. It might be not the best graphics you have seen, but its a hell of a ride (and there is an enhancement mod out there )
And it was time to do a second one (i am honest, i wanted to do it for a while but always something came between) - So let's get started
Today i will go over three other amazing artists i found while browsing some of the galleries on DeviantArt, and these were the ones that immediately caught my attention through just one picture and after i checked them out i just fell in love with their work.
So please take a look and check them out - and as always if you enjoy the work, help them in any way you can - commenting tipping, shout outs and so on.
Ah DAV-19 - i only stumbled upon her work, because i was looking over some creations of NieR-Automata, one of my absolute favorite games (oh, shut up :-P ). So yes. What i found was this little piece of 2B I really like it, because of how calm it is and i still think she looks elegant in this destroyed building.
As always i checked out some of her other work, and this was when i found her gallery of her OC Patricia - and now you know why i put her on my watch list Yes i admit it, if you do cute and interesting pics of wolf or fox girls you can get my attention and if they are even done well and show a lot of character (through poses or even small comic strips) and you have me on my site. I really love what she did with her, and more in how many different ways she did it.
Now if you think this is the only kind of art she does good, oh how wrong you are. If you go through her gallery you find a lot of great pictures, and because she has different kind of techniques she uses, there is so much to find - some of the pieces i absolute love:
Saber / Charizard / Firefox / Inu X Boku SS - and so much more...
Belive it or not, this artist i found nearly at the same time like the before mentioned DAV-19, because i found a 2B picture that this artist did. It got my interest because of the way the background and the motion was combined here. At first glance, it looks very busy and that everything blurs together, but if you take a second look you see that this is not the case. What we have here, is someone who, how ever, is able to combine these things to create more than fantastic pictures.
The gallery is really a place to go through and discover more picture like this one that brought this artist on my radar.
Interestingly: chinchongcha tries different techniques to draw quicker - and every time i read things like "reduced details" and look at these pictures i think i have different ideas of this term o.O because i don't see any difference, there are still so many details there.
Just take a look at the following pictures: To the place where we belong / DVa Hanbok / Miku / Night Stroll in Spirit Kingdom / Space Launching Site
Ok, i am honest with you, i really just clicked on the picture of Haruka because like i already said, i am just a sucker for really good created wolf and fox girls, and this version of Haruka was just to good for me to pass by I just loved the details, the face, the colors, and the elegant style. I just fell in love with this.
And as always i checked out her gallery and wow. Nikato has a very unique art style that is just to good to overlook. She creates very, like i said, elegant characters but even more the faces and these expressions (especially from the eyes) are just so amazing, you can't get enough of them.
Don't believe me? Then check out just some of her work, and tell me you don't get captured by them in some way: Haruka / Demon Goddess / HPD KirasElixir! / Aki
I hope i could show you some new artists you never have heard of and might someone new to follow See you soon!
Arpeggio is a small story i stumbled across a while ago. I went through some anime lists and saw a little title called "Aoki Hagane no Arpeggio: Ars Nova" created by SANZIGEN. I am normally not a war fan, but the synopsis intrigued me:
"By 2039, global warming had caused sea levels to rise and large amount of territory to be lost. As though in response, a mysterious group of warships clad in mist, "the Fleet of Mist," appeared in every corner of the ocean, and began attacking human ships. In spite of humanity mustering all their strength, they were utterly defeated by the Mist's overwhelming force. All of humanity's trade routes were blockaded by the Fleet of Mist, their political economy was destroyed, and the human race was steadily beaten down. Seven years later, the Fleet of Mist's submarine I-401 appears before cadet Gunzo Chihaya. The humanoid life form that pilots the sub, who should be their enemy, is instead offering her services to mankind."
I had high hopes because it sounded like something that had a lot of potential. After watching this series i have to say i was really disappointed. Now don't get me wrong, it's not a horrible show, there were really fun parts and i like the way they did the ship fights. But a lot of the things in the back was just cringeworthy. One of the biggest things i hated was the way Iona, the avatar of the I-401, was depicted. The mental models should be something high advanced and she looked most of the time like a dumb child...it was just frustrating because the other characters were all really good and interesting. And what i also found a little bit boring was that the show depicted the I-401 Crew and their captain Chihaya Gunzou as the ones who are the only ones who can do something or are capable, it was just like every other of these stories.
So yeah, for me personally "Ars Nova" was sadly not what i was hoping for.
Now, this wasn't the end of this story. A year later i stumbled upon this series again, but this time in manga form called "Ark Performance" released by Seven Seas Entertainment LLC.
Now i would lie if i say if i wasn't thinking to skip it, but something in me said: "Listen, you now learned many times that the books are better then the shows, so check it out".
So, i went and ordered the first issue. Like i said, i didn't expect anything after the show. So after i received it, i started reading and was blown away, so that i immediately ordered the next issues.
Yes, the books are what i wanted the show to be.
Directly from the start you get a feeling of the scale of the world, you see that this story doesn't follow your typical "black&white" storyline (there are so many factions, and every one has its own agenda), the ship fights are done fantastically (the amount of detail they came up with, there are panels that really feel like they wanted you to be there) and the characters are not dumbed down and there are actually also a lot of side characters and crews the main protagonists are working with and agains.
They really put a lot of effort into it, and i am amazed that this flows under the radar of so many people. Like i said, i am normally not someone who likes these kinds of war stories, but this is an example that can capture even me.
I will admit, like all of my recommendations, that a big chunk of people might have problems with the way some storylines are written (again they are going on parallel and it takes time until they cross or go into another direction, but this only makes it feel even more "real" (you never have the feeling the bad guys are just waiting for our heroes, and have their own agenda).
And yes, even in the books there are some very silly things in it (i say Teddybear), but again they are not that bad, it makes it even more interesting and every part of it has a reason to be there.
If you are searching for a new story that is a little bit different, have no problems with war stories or ship fights, like surprises you might not have seen coming, lot of characters and a deep world with many factions - then what are you waiting for, check out "Arpeggio of Blue Stee: Ark Performance"
So yes “Bone”, the indie comic created by Jeff Smith, was published between 1991 and 2004 tells the story about the Bone cousins (Fone, Smiley and Phoney), who, after a campaign of Phoney goes awry, are kicked out of their town and find themselves in a very strange place.
I don’t want to tell you more because I think this story is amazing and the way its escalating is greatly written.
One thing I always love is when people who never heard of this title check out pictures and find these little very strange looking white people that look like old cartoon characters. The first impression is really like this is some kind of old cartoon show that is just for fun and nothing really serious, but you would be wrong in so many ways.
Yes, the story begins like just a small comedy like comic that somehow slowly becomes a little fairytale and slowly becomes a story about a whole valley trying to prevent an apocalypse.
It looks cute but gets dark very quick. Now what also surprises a lot of people when they first hear of this comic is its length. Most of us think about something like the small books you can find in stores with maybe something up to 100 pages if they are collected, maybe even 400, but Bone is a whopping 1332 pages long and still it feels like the end was a little bit rushed.
But let’s be fair, someone who wrote a story that nearly went on over 10 years, who just wants to finish it might get a little bit carried away, but don’t think the end is bad, oh no, its really a ending that makes you happy - it just felt a little bit short, with all this build up over time.
If you are fan of big fantasy adventures and are searching for something very unique, go check out “Bone” from Jeff Smith
I know, I know I didn’t really say a lot about it, but this is a story I absolutely recommend checking out without knowing a lot about what’s going on. It just loses a lot if you know more than what I told you above – so go check it out – at once
Full Title: Madlax / Madorakkusu
Studio: Bee Train
I love anime. Now I should mention I am not an extreme fan, just someone who likes watching shows and movies of this kind because there are so many kinds of stories and themes that I miss a little bit from the more mainstream western animation shows. Before you now start shouting at me: I have also some favorites western shows: Futurama, Southpark, Cyber Six, TRON or Avatar….
But today we are talking about anime, more about one of my favorites out there: Madlax by Bee Train. Yes, Madlax, the one anime I sometimes have the feeling I am one of the only people out there who really love this series, because every time I mention this name people say “OMG, this BS” or “What? That sounds stupid!”.
Ok, I admit, this is a show that really isn’t for anyone and I understand most of the people who can’t watch it through.
So why is this the case and why do I love it so much? Very simple, the reason so many people hate it and I love it is the story and the way the story is told. But let’s start at the beginning, what is it about:
Madlax tells the story of two women: Madlax, a legendary mercenary in the civil war-torn country of Gazth-Sonika, who can’t remember anything (her past or even her name) before the time twelve years ago when the war started. And Margaret Burton, the sole heir of a wealthy aristocratic family in the peaceful European country Nafrece. She lost her memory after a plane crash in Gazth-Sonika 12 years ago where she was mysteriously survived and found her way back to civilization with only mumbling one-word “Madlax”. What is the connection between these two very different women?
Now you might see just from this small synopsis where the first problem might be for many people. The story tells two (and sometimes even more) parallel storylines. So, we switch between parts with Madlax in the war zone and then we see parts where we follow Margaret go shopping (in some kind). Intense and action scenes switch with the quieter ones partly very quickly.
I think this is what alienates viewers because we aren’t used to something like this and people who just like the one or the other part mostly hate when the opposite happens. I personally love this type of storytelling (even one of my favorite books is like this) and I always love when both storylines connect or cross and my god Madlax has one of the – at least in my eyes – best scenes for this, but it takes some time until it happens.
For me, they did a good job with switching between all the characters and also how they worked all the connections between these two into another. Especially when some of the side characters start to interact with these two without knowing who is in front of them.
Ok, but what if you love this? Then there is the second big problem that might bring people to hate it: the mystical and magical aspect. If you haven’t guessed it already there is a lot more that connects our both heroines, then just the place and time they lost something of their identity (I won't tell what it is). Yeah like I said, there are more stories that take place, we have people disappearing, a ghost world, some kind of magic, a cult and a lot more.
I won’t deny following the story, especially at the beginning, can be very confusing, but believe me when I say, that the more you see and the longer the story goes, the more everything starts connecting and I really loved the ending.
Ok, it looks like I am trying to get you away from this in my eyes amazing anime, but please give it a try if you love a little bit more stretched out stories with mystic elements, magic, interesting characters and one of the best OSTs I know. And, if you were a fan of Noir.
The Soundtrack is amazing. I haven’t heard a better one since I watched this show and I heard a lot I really enjoyed, but not one reached the quality than the one from Madlax.
Just as an example, I give you some of my favorite titles from the soundtrack:
1.) Saints: youtu.be/kvXESbB7SG8
2.) Nowhere: youtu.be/XuCCfA8yfug
3.) I`m Here: youtu.be/UZDXgF77Up4
4.) Madlax: youtu.be/15WGy-LjSp8
5.) Inside Your Heart: youtu.be/QD0ToWEF2JA
Thanks for reading, and I really would love to hear what you think about this anime.
To be honest, this really is just pure coincidence, but against what everyone might think, this isn’t why I love these characters this much.
So, what is it what fascinates me so with the characters:
Holo/Horo from Spice and Wolf – created by Isuna Hasekura
Caster (Tamamo no Mae) from Fate/Extra – created by Nasu Kinoko/Kazuya Niinō
Ada from Replay – created by NotImportant
Let’s begin with the first of these three: Holo/Horo one of the main characters from the light novel series “Spice and Wolf”.
At first, when you hear about her, you might think she is like every other deity out there that has problems to fit into the world, is a little bit dimwitted or something that normally writers use when they try to write a god character into a story. But when we meet this wolf goddess we are very surprised how she is introduced. Her first thing she askes for is alcohol and also hates to be seen as a goddess, she just wants to be seen for who she is. And during this conversation, we see that what we have here is a deep and very interesting character to come. And Isuna Hasekura doesn’t disappoint. We see that she only puts a facade and how she really feels but doesn’t show it very often (at least at the start), she has her flaws (loves alcohol and is addicted to apples), she is intelligent and understands quick and uses her wits. It’s a lot of fun watching/reading her dialogues with Lawrence or when she talks with other characters. The best thing about her is, that she never feels fake, ever reaction from her is believable. You have the feeling this is a real person – except that she has the tail and ears of a wolf, which she takes a lot of care for.
If you love complex characters, have no problem with a slow but steading working story or just love road trip stories with a bigger story behind it but without big action then do yourself a favor and check out “Spice and Wolf” light novels – The manga and anime versions aren’t bad, but there are a lot of parts missing or changed – but if you see them check them out, especially the anime. And do this in the English dub (yes, I am serious) – Brina Palencia does such an amazing job voicing Holo, she nailed her character nearly perfect.
If you want to know a little bit more from me, check out my small look at Spice and Wolf (this is a very early video, I was still in the finding phase ^^)
Caster from the Fate/Extra series was also a more accidental run in.
I admit I love the stories of Type-Moon and yes, I am a fan of the different interpretations of Saber – this was the reason I checked out the PSP games. I was interested how they added this virtual world aspect to a game where people fight to the death for the holy grail. The first time I really saw her was on the box, and this was the first time she peaked my interest – I must admit I really loved her design (beginning from her clothes to her fox traits) and I got curious again, how the hell does such a unique character come into a story that tried to not go too over the top with the designs (I know, the series is over the top).
So, after the first playthrough with Saber, I wanted to play this game again and try out Caster, and this was the point I was blindsided. Caster was such a bubbly character and it was a very big change to what I was used to from the other characters to this point. At first, I wasn’t sure if I could stand her, but the more and longer the story went and the more dialogues this character had, the more she grew on me.
Again, the happy and bubbly persona is partly a facade and the more you find out about her in your private room you see that she is holding a lot back. Sadly, most of her backstory and history you must read outside the game, but after that, you understand why she is how she is and she gets even more interesting. Also, her happy, bubbly and sometimes jealous persona is bringing a lot of fun during the story dialogues she has with other characters. She is a very hard character to describe without really experiencing her in some way – if you want to know what I mean without playing the game or watching let’s pay from a farming dungeon crawler you can check out the manga Fate/Extra- Foxtails.
If you want to know a little bit more, again I did a small video, but this time more about some figures I have here in my display case…
This brings us to the last of this trio: Ada from Replay.
Ah, Ada, a character that from the first page shows us she is the more no-nonsense and sometimes insecure character. She might haven’t reached the amount of character like the other two, but NotImportant already shows us, that she isn’t just someone who is only written as a character to an apocalypse story but has a lot more behind her, even if we are only scratching at the surface.
She gets angry very quick, can become very impatient while training others, she has a caring side (at least for the people who don’t annoy or disgust her), she can’t remember names (seen in the prequel comics), she needs Robert as an anchor, she is able to use magic and uses a very big sword – so better stay out of her way.
Really hope we see more of her in the future because we have here another cult character in the making.
And yes also there is a small video about this story, but again a very early one, so please be gentle with critique ^^
Ok, and at the end the big elephant in the room – why is my OC also seen with these traits, when I don’t have a fetish?
Easy: She wasn’t designed this way – when I started the idea was to have a Lycanthrope, more a werewolf. But over time this changed a little bit and in the end, after NotImportant created her interpretation of Crystal, I decided the character herself loved these traits and stayed with them (and yes I liked this design a lot ^^)
I know this still doesn't explain all the favorites in my gallery... ok over time i somehow got a soft spot for good created Kemonomimi, it just happened and so i admit i like these kinds of characters Also i really started enjoying all these myths about Kitsune and on... so yes it got somehow a favorite of me, but not in the negative way, like some of you might think...
Thanks for reading this long ramble, I know a lot makes no sense, but I just love to write stupid overlong writings – like I make my videos XD
See you soon!
Hi and Welcome to a segment that i wanted to release for a while but it got somehow always pushed back, but now it was time for it to go online
I played with the idea to create some kind of Q&A for the artists and creators i follow and do the introductions to their work - the first concept was more a video interview over skype or something similar, but because of the different time zones it was a little hard to get something done, so the whole idea transformed over time to a questionnaire. But because i didn't want to use the same questions like everyone i tried to come up with something a little bit different but still similar to what you normally find out there.
And so the "A Nobody asks..." questionnaire was born (and was overworked with the help of NotImportant - a big thank you goes to her).
There are two parts to this. The first ten questions are more your standard one (about the work, the artists and everything behind) and the second part is more a "freestyle" section where i let the creators enough room to play (if they want) - here these could be answered in any way they wanted.
And so we come to the first artist who kindly said yes to answer my questions:
Savannah Palazini aka SpavVy
The creator of the fantastic comic Soul Ascendance
1. What was the inspiration for starting your comic?
I was inspired by so many things, anime is obviously a no brainer. Some of my biggest inspirations were- -Devil May Cry the anime -Teen Titans -Ghost Rider -Stephen King -Nabari No Ou -Soul Eater -Paranormal experiences I’ve had since I was a child
2. Have you already finished writing your story or are you creating it as you go?
I haven’t finished writing the story, I have about nine chapter rough drafted in a notebook with some future Notes but other than that not really, I do know what I want for an ending though but of course, that could Change as well as my storytelling continues to develop.
3. What were your thoughts after you posted the first pages and first readers started commenting on them?
Well, I used to have an editor that hated everything I wrote so after we split up and I began posting My story again and revamped it I got a surprising amount of good feedback which really made me feel Better.
4. How much of yourself do we find in your characters?
Well, Lucy definitely has my sass although she has more of it than I do. She’s also short like I am though she’s an inch taller. We both also suffer from a condition known as “resting bitch face” (laughs) Jack like me holds a lot of regrets though it’s for different reasons. Personality wise he holds most personality characteristics from my boyfriend.
5. What was the most fun-to-draw scene in your comic to date?
I had a lot of fun introducing the succubus sisters in chapter two, sadly we won’t be seeing them a whole lot but they are fun to work with.
6. Was there ever a point where you wrote yourself into a corner and somehow, without anybody knowing it, were able to get out of it?
Yeah, I tend to do that a lot actually but I always manage to get out of it.
7. Looking back at the beginning of your comic, is there something you'd love to change?
I would go back and make Vincent’s hair more wavy so that people WILL STOP THINKING THAT LUCY AND JACK ARE HIM! GAHHH!
8. Did you ever reach a point where you thought about abandoning your comic? If yes, what was the reason for not going through with it and continuing?
When I was feeling down after having an ex-friend/editor make me feel like crap and insulting my characters, yeah I really was thinking about just stopping everything especially because said person kept putting me through guilt trips as well, it took a while for me to come around on that.
9. Do you have an artist you look up to?
I look up to Whispwill Shirow Miwa Aaaand I think that’s it…
10. Is there something you want to tell all your fans/followers out there?
I love you guys but please stop asking about spoilers!
1. If your character(s) could break the fourth wall, what would they say or do to you?
Probably kill me for all the horrible things I made them go through.
2. How do your characters spent the free time they get, when you take a short break of your comic?
Lucy likes to read a lot and Jack likes to cook every once in a while.
3. What kind of hobbies do your characters secretly have that they don’t want anyone to know about?
Lucy likes to read some really NSFW material…like 50 shades of grey type of material… She also enjoys collecting cute things like stuffed animals. Jack never really had any hobbies, he was always busy since the age of 13.
4. What was the most terrifying nightmare/most beautiful dream your character(s) ever had?
Well for Lucy there is supposed to eventually be a filler episode where Lucy accidentally cooks the wrong mushrooms and ends up tripping out so badly that she sees her teammates as totally different things and gnomes coming out from under the floor tiles to kidnap her. For her this is terrifying.
5. A company gives you the chance to create a figurine of one of your characters in any way you like. Which character would you pick and how would the figurine look like (pose, clothes, etc.)?
I’ve actually been looking into it myself, I’ve been considering on downloading blender To make 3D models and send them out to a company that does 3D printing. As far as the poses go I’m not entirely sure just yet.
6. A genie gives you one small wish (nothing big like world peace etc.), what would you wish for?
I’d wish for either to make a living off of my comic or for Soul Ascendance to become an anime that would be Animated by WIT Studio
I hope you enjoyed this small insight of a great comic creator. I hope to do more of them (i already contacted some other creators), but they will go online when i get an answer, so there won't be any schedule for these.
If you have an idea for an other creator i should send these questions let me know
Thanks for reading and see you soon!
I am reading web comics now for quite some time and it became the main focus of my Youtube channel. During the last years, i have found some really great ones and created a personal Top15 list. And i thought i share this with you.
Now keep in mind, this is just my personal list and opinion.
Top 15 Web Comic List of NiWo21k (Nov. 4 2017):
Hi and Welcome to a small test of what i hope becomes a new segment somewhere in the future.
I normally just talk about web and indie comics, but i just wanted to also give some non comic creators out there a little bit more attention or at least tell my followers about them. At the moment i am not really sure if this is something my readers and viewers are really into. So to find this out i started a small poll on Twitter and also created a kind of test version of how this might look at the end.
Ok, normally a shout out is just name dropping without much background, but for me this doesn´t feel right. So this is how my first shout out was created ^^
I just hope
and aren´t mad at me for talking about them and showing their art to other people out there.
Thank you for reading. See you next time