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Posts tagged “Review

Anime Review: My Hero Academia

Looking for more superheroes in your already super life? Think you’ve got room for watching a superhero fork before your very eyes? Ever wondered what they teach superheroes? In which case, this may very well be the anime for you – It can only be the hugely popular My Hero Academia, a series I have been asked to watch many times, by many people. Will it be as super-good as everyone makes out, or is it a super-flop? Read on to find out more!

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Trailer Review – The Mummy & Thor: Ragnarok

I fully intended today’s article to be pure ranting, but something came along to soften my mood.

In a bid to catch hold of the rising star of the Marvel shared universe, Universal announced a while back that they had plans to bring together their classic horror properties into a single entity. It was initially slated to begin with Dracula Untold, the rough diamond that could have gone onto far greater things in smarter hands. It’s a shame, I for one enjoyed Luke Evans in the titular role as a king who embraced a curse in order to save his people, but I can respect why the cliched, overly romanticised and effects-heavy film might have grated on certain audiences. So instead the franchise begins with a new approach on The Mummy.

Tom Cruise was on the list of stars optioned for the role of Rick Connors in the 1999 action fantasy that ultimately went on to immortalise Brendan Frasier. It was a fun film, suitably terrifying while still light and fun enough that anyone could enjoy it, and Frasier, Rachel Weiss, and John Hannah formed a team of capable but humorous characters that richly deserved a third instalment that instead ended in tragedy, sadly dooming the future of that particular franchise without a reboot.

Of course, as we’re looking at a broader horror franchise, perhaps for the new film horror is the angle to take, rather than the kitsch family adventure we’ve come to associate with the Mummy title. I love the look of the new Mummy. No more Imhotep, introducing Ahmanet, cursed priestess come to conquer the modern world with her ancient magics, complete with giant screaming face in a wall of water, very cool. But for good quality horror we’re missing a few key elements, highest of which must be vulnerability.

Ahmanet is presented in the trailer as an overwhelming force, utterly daunting and positively apocalyptic in scope, a foe to be fought with wit and desperation. In the trailer we see guns which will doubtlessly be useless, but the rest of the footage is a sizzle real of Tom Cruise doing awesome things and surviving certain peril, not a trace of the calamitous pulp adventure stylings of the ’99 film. We have an action hero in a horror film, thus negating both. Whether I like Cruise or not (I don’t) he’s still a bad fit for the job, and I have a profound sense of foreboding.

Russel Crowe has adopted the role of Henry Jekyll, and here I must also levy a certain amount of scepticism. I suppose I have a little more respect for him as an actor, and I can certainly see him as the intimidating alter-ego but as the sympathetic and vulnerable doctor? John Hannah rather immortalised the part for me a long time ago.

I want to go see the new Mummy film, but I go with some preconceptions, the promotional work is not filling me with optimism for this or any other attempts Universal might make in the future. The MCU has been brought about as a labour of love, and everyone scrabbling for a piece of that shared-universe action is coming across as sad and desperate. Something new might be needed, something with a unified universe to build upon that could be brought to life by a director who already has a passion for it. Something like H.P. Lovecraft’s works assembled by Guillermo Del Torro perhaps?!


Anyway, let’s get to the good news from the week. We got a new Thor trailer, and it looks both epic and hilarious!

Immediately I’m struck by a lot of elements in the art direction that are screaming Guardians of the Galaxy at me, bold colour schemes, 1980’s graphics, industrially styled settings populated by a wide variety of alien species, and Immigrants Song – very fitting for a Norse god. We might finally see the tie-in we’ve been waiting for, a character connection that goes beyond the Infinity Stones and Thanos, a formal introduction to the more Earth-bound Avengers. All of this assuming nothing crops up in the new Guardians film coming out in a week or two!

Cate Blanchett as Hela looks truly epic, unclear is Loki’s allegiance in her war with Asgard. We get a fleeting glimpse of Karl Urban as Skurge dual-wielding automatic rifles, a look at the back of Valkyrie’s head, and out first shots of Jeff Goldblum in the role of Grandmaster. That’s a lot of stuff to take in all at once! So much detail, a spectacle that may yet escalate all that we have seen so far, a veritable tour-de-force for the series, but what’s everyone going to be talking about?

Hulk!

And may I say, “Awww Yeeaaah!”

Had the narrative not nimbly removed them from the fray, this is the rematch we all wanted to see in Civil War. Last time Thor took the upper hand by dumping Mjolnir on Hulk’s chest and pinning him to the deck of the helicarrier while the audience laughed at his frustration… at least they did at my screening. This time Hulk has scrap metal armour and no magic hammer, smashed to bits by Hela.

At least one meta-series is going according to plan, despite the people claiming it’s on its last legs or starting to look like it’s in trouble. Ragnarok is still while away, we still have Guardians of the Galaxy and Spider-Man to go. In the mean time I will be watching developments in Universal’s efforts with curiosity. They’d better get Jekyll and Hyde right.


WrestleMania 33 – Timlah’s Summary

I love the wacky world of professional wrestling; so much so, I’ve written about it on numerous occasions. Either in passing, or as a full-blown review, it’s no secret that I love that industry and all of the weird and wonderful people who have come and gone with it. That’s what this article is really mostly about: the people who have come and gone with it. More on that later, but there’s no doubt you’ve heard about the retirement of the legendary Undertaker and if you hadn’t, you might be alone. It was one of those moments that shook an industry to its very core – So if you’re at least somewhat intrigued to know more about the whole show, read on. Otherwise, eh, hopefully you get a good insight about it and why I’d call Professional Wrestling fans equally as geeky as some of the other fandoms we cover on this website.

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Android Gaming – 3 Cool Picks

Gaming has become a staple of smartphones, on Android, iPhone and yes, even Windows phones. As I only have access to an Android phone, I thought I would share three fun games that’s on Android. I cannot guarantee if they’re on another platform or not, but it’s worth checking for these three for various reasons. So check out these games when you next get space on your phone! They’re rather good fun.

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Free Video Game Review: Champions Online

Like MMORPGs and Superheroes? Then this mix might be right up your alley, although this isn’t City of Heroes, but it’s made by Cryptic Studios – The developers of said City of Heroes. In my bid to turn people’s attention to free video games that are at least worth a look, I stumbled upon this free-to-play MMO with a heroic touch. So join me and my Superheroic avatar, the almighty… uhh… Timlah. I never said I was a creative sort.


Overview

Developer Cryptic Studios
Platforms PC (Windows), Xbox 360
Windows Release September 2009
Genre Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game
Price on Steam £Free

Review

Gameplay

Completing a quest in an area

We’re going to completely forgo the story in this; it’s really hard to judge an MMORPG on a story, as really it’s a mish-mash of many stories. However, if you want to know, you play a hero who has been called to help the city from baddies.

Start the game as one of many different classes, go around and beat up bad guys, claim the rewards. All in the day in the life of a Superhero, right? Well that’s what Champions Online would get you to think, as an MMO built to reward you for being the best hero you can be. Help citizens, fellow heroes, people of interest and more as you combat the evil-doers who have infested Millenium City. Experience, money, skills and much more for those who play long enough.

Don’t be deceived by the above however – It’s a long slog until you’re anywhere near that level of heroics. It’s going to be a game with a lot of grinding, a lot of character progression and a lot of meeting people who don’t know how to get to a quest, so they aimlessly chase after you in a hopes that you know what you’re doing. Then you ask them if they know where they’re going, but they look at you with those big dumb avatar eyes and say “u noob”. People can be so classy at times!

“We’re all looking for that one person who has a clue.” – Kevin Kutlesa

My free ‘aura’. I love it! Sadly you can’t preview before purchase, so if I picked a duff one, that’d have been bad!

So what I’ve learned is that stat allocation is a bit different to a typical MMORPG – You don’t either manually upgrade the stats you want; nor does the game do it all for you. Instead, the game at key points will ask you to upgrade stats you want. This means you’re able to increase your stats even if it’s a stat you don’t necessarily need. This helps those who are making completely free-form champions, which is an option. Meanwhile, I decided to go pretty easy, so I picked a sword-swinging champion who just dishes out the pain. Sadly, he doesn’t have much health, but ho hum, it’s good enough to take on small groups solo!

There’s free auras in the game, allowing you to emit a cool glow. As well as this, you get a travel power. I picked Mach Speed, to move around super fast… However, you can pick flight right from the off. Why didn’t I choose it? I dunno. I was happy with just being super fast and I can tell you – I think I picked the best travel option. Nevermind that though, you go about quests, entering instances of varying toughness. You attack enemies by clicking on them, then pressing 1 for an auto attack (more or less), or other numbers which corresponds with the position of your champions abilities.

Graphics

As always, we believe seeing is believing here on GeekOut. The first thing I noticed is that the game looks pretty good for a free game. Ultimately it won’t blow you away graphically, but it’s entirely non-offensive to look at. In fact the hero creation screen was fantastic! The amount of customisation is truly exceptional, so top marks for the character side of the game. As an aside, within minutes of being in game, I saw someone who made their avatar look exactly like Nightcrawler, so excellent job there. The backgrounds aren’t as detailed, but this doesn’t bug me much… unlike these bug-men in the first area!

Audio

Slightly disappointing, except that opening screen, the music is pretty basic. But then again, would you want music blasting your ears off when playing an MMO? With this said, there’s enough ambiance to keep you sane throughout, so it’s not all bad. With a catchy enough beat, it’s all pretty well done. Just a shame there’s nothing more exciting when in the main cities! Still, there’s enough variety between different instances, that it does just about enough to keep you at least amused.


Overall

Is this a World of Warcraft killer? Oh God no! Is this the MMO to beat all MMOS? Definitely not! But shall I tell you what this game is? Simple, free fun. If you’re unable to afford a monthly price tag on an MMO, this might be a good time killer and a good way to get into the genre. The community seems nice enough, the customisation and the graph settings are excellent and the variety of classes seem varied and interesting. With this said, there are obvious flaws with it, such as the simple gameplay and weird selecting-then-talking mechanic previously discussed. If you’re interested in giving this a whirl, check it out on Steam.

Overall It’s a great fun time sink, exactly what you want from an MMO. I would recommend taking a travelling party with you in the world, but ultimately, you can make some friends on there. It’s a social game with a community who seems half interested in partying up and half entirely disengaged. The latter are probably just there to play a free game mind. Now we take it over to all of you – What do you make of Champions Online? Is this an MMO you would play, or do you think it’s not heroic enough for you? As always, share your thoughts below or over on Facebook, Twitter or Reddit.


Film Review: Logan

These old bones won’t heal, at least the old bones of the titular hero Logan won’t. What an utterly gripping film! Well worth the trip to the cinema and, as one of the first films we suggested would ne worthwhile this year, I can gladly say I was not disappointed. But for those of you who haven’t seen it, here’s our spoiler-free review of the most action-packed film in March.

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TV Review: Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events

Are you prepared to listen to a tale of serious misfortune and misery? The serial misconduct of those caring for three children; the Baudelaire orphans? Lemony Snicket advises that you are better off just looking away. But if, like me, you have a morbid fascination with watching things people tell you not to, this might be the series for you! So don’t adjust your screens, it is time to review Lemony Snickets A Series of Unfortunate Events.

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Anime Review: Bananya

Do you love cats? Great, because that’s all that you get in this anime. Do you love bananas? Great, because that’s all that you get to accompany the cats in this anime. This is literally, exactly as the description of the anime suggests, an anime about cats that reside in bananas. Ho boy, I think I’ve lost the plot now. Still, at 3 minutes per episode, you can’t really complain much for the rather cute depictions of cats in bananas, even if it’s one of the stranger concepts I’ve uncovered on Crunchyroll as of late.

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Review – Lego Batman

It looks like the Warner Bros/Lego tag-team might have a far grander future ahead of them than expected. It might also be the salvation of DC on the big screen, if a somewhat comical take.

Lego Batman was something of a breakout star in the original Lego Movie (2014), perhaps based on Will Arnett‘s performance, more likely the epic song he wrote. LB is a perfect and childish parody of the comic-book Dark Knight, blending in the campy Caped Crusader, we saw him initially to be an overblown stereotype of dark and brooding, playing off every move he makes as super-cool and totally intentional, and to my mind the writers used the members of the Justice League perfectly. Green Lantern’s powers are pointless in a world where anyone can create anything, and the innate magic of imagination basically renders Superman useless, Wonder Woman is probably fine, but the ingenuity and creativity of Batman makes him the perfect Master Builder, although one with a limited colour palette. (more…)


Flio – Just another Laptop stand?

I’ve been using a laptop for years now, it’s been my main machine for potentially the last 10+ years and I have at times suffered from a bad back. I could buy a laptop stand, there are thousands of them out there to choose from that come in all shapes and sizes; so what is it about the Flio Up that made me shell out €79 for one?

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