Serendipity: A lesson in choosing you!

Being the Panda I am, I was never too much into romantic movies. A lot of them are about sex, lust or relationships. I do not care about that kind of stuff at all. I also do not really like the dramatic ones where one is dying, dead or tore apart from their lover through other means. So stuff like the notebook, the lakehouse or currently more relevant, the Holiday have never been my jam. Yet there is one romantic movie that makes me swoon and smile and be all giddy wondering when things like this will happen to me. That movie is Serendipity , a movie from 2001 featuring John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale with more minor roles for Jeremy Piven and Molly Shannon. What makes this romance heavy movie so different? It’s all in the message.

Two Horrible People

On one faithfull night in New York Sara Thomas and Jonathan Trager meet in a department store, trying to buy the same set of gloves while doing christmas shopping for their partners.  When trying to decide which of them gets the gloves they share a deeper connection and end up having a wonderful evening together. Jonathan lets Sara keep the gloves and she treats him to coffee, from their on out it is clear that these two fall head over heels for each other. Yet they both have relationships so it would not seem meant for them to be together? Or do they, that night they keep encountering each other and falling under each others spell more and more. With one final test they try to see if they should be together by picking a random floor on a 50 floor hotel.  Sara is a big believer into these sort of ideas. While both pick the same floor, a kid getting in the elevator dressed like the devil ruins Johnathan’s shot at this woman and the two are forced to go back to their old lives. Only a book with her phone number, or a dollar with his phone number can bring them back together again. Yet as the years pass by, nothing seems to happen.

Years later both of them get ready to tie the respective knots with their partners, yet both want to give it one more shot to find that mysterious encounter of many years ago, will destiny bring them together or will they wise up and let go of this wild little idea of romance? At first glance this is a very generic plot and in some ways it kind of is. Yet there is a monumental difference between this and basically all other romantic movies. These are the bad guys we are following. Normally we see a girl being neglected by her boyfriend and she finds out she deserves better during the movie.  We see a guy who is being kept on a too short leash by his gal, realising near the end that he has his own rights as well, he doesn’t just have to live for her. The partners of Jonathan and Sara are actually pretty great people. Kate Beckinsale being slightly worse off due to her boyfriend being very busy with a weird flute album. Yet both the flutist and Jonathan’s fiancé show very much love and devotion towards their significant other. The main characters just can’t full reciprocate that love. They are the horrible people we would hate in any other movie, They lie to their partners on a whim and they both plan to be unfaithful or at least put their obsession for each other to an end so they can finally move on. During this movie they are both shown to be very selfish and inconsiderate to the feelings of others because that passion they have deep inside … and I love it.

Never Settle

This movie teaches an all important lesson that people in this day and age have oh so forgotten. The first person you need to make happy .. is yourself.  These days we get obsessed by doing the right thing, by being politically correct and by being the nice person we often end up selling ourselves short. We play pretend that nothing is wrong not to hurt others feelings, while experiencing misery ourselves.  Jonathan and Sara .. as well as this movie in general are a message that you should never settle. A partner should never be the one that is good enough. A partner should always want to be the one, you want to be with more than anything else. The key about a successful relationship is that you have to look out for yourself first. Priority 1 is to make sure, your partner makes you happy, not making your partner happy. While of course you also need to treat your partner well, they can’t tell if they actually make you happy, nor can you completely see if you make them happy so stick with the facts first and do not sell yourself short. If you are not happy with your partner you can never make them truly happy, because if they love you.. that is their desire. 
Serendipity gets this right and while the connection between Beckinsale and Cusack really sparkles and you can actually really feel this is really a movie about them realising their own happiness comes first. 

While this movie is at times overly sweet and the love between our two leads seems larger than live, it doesn’t detract from the message. The movie is not so much about the search for that person.. it’s a search for that moment of true happiness that both of them got to experience true happiness. This is also reflected in the way the dialogues are written. Sara admits to her friend Halley she barely even remembers Jonathan or what they did. She can only remember that sensation. She can’t even remember his looks that well. Meanwhile Cusack’s character frantically searches for something and he doesn’t even really knows what exactly he wants from Sara. It reflects that they aren’t really looking for each other, but looking for that feeling the other gave them. It’s something you can’t put into words something unexplainable.. something larger than life. The movie handles this well that in a way it even overwrites it’s own “plot holes”.

Whims of Fate

Sara is initially being depicted as very superstitious if Jonathan and her are not at the same place at the same time, it’s not meant to be. Johnathan is much more pragmatic and tries to bend fate to his hand. Throughout the movie we see many, many instances of Serendipity each scene showing that they SHOULD be together. Like how they pick the same level on the elevator in the movies intro.  This kind of stuff keeps happening throughout the movie implying that Beckinsale and Cusack are meant to be together each action they take brings them closer to each other or evento each others location, however the actions of others keep stopping them. A mascotte tilts over and Sara picks it up..being seconds late to meet Jonathan misses meeting Sara because of a store clerk gives him a hard time it all can feel a bit cringeworthy at times. One might even argue that actually faith is telling them that it is not meant to be.  So while I absolutely adore this movie, I can see that at times it can really miss the Serendipity mark. Which is it are they meant to be together or not. What should I feel as the viewer? There is no clear answer, you are thrown for a loop and it’s not all perfectly clear what happens when. As a result some scenes can feel a bit inconsequential. The status quo doesn’t really change from beginning to end so it can feel a bit light on plot. While accepting fate as a force wby they SHOULD be together though, both characters seem to ignore it when told they should NOT.

Yet that again to me is the beauty of this movie, there isn’t a chain of beautiful hollywood memories. This movie is all about that one moment and two people’s obsession by it. Breaking their own rules, in favor of each other. We do not get super unlikely chains of events that drive these two apart. No .. it is as simple as having other social obligations, making a little excuse to bail out on something, little misunderstandings. Johnathan does not interact with people willy nilly and neither does Sara. They mostly just share their concerns with their best friends, who do their best to advice them. While Cusack and Beckinsale clearly out-act their respective best friends, it still feels very human. To me, no matter how unlikely the situation would be resembles a true love story the most I have ever seen in a Hollywood movie. These are normal people who realise their other partner is not good enough for them. Not because those people they are with are bad guys.. no.. they simply do not love them enough.  Something they needed a magical moment for to realise. Trying to stay with their partner after that .. made sense as well, it’s human nature to rather have something than nothing after all. We can not control what we feel, we just get pushed into situations that makes us feel, that is what makes us human and that what makes this a darn enjoyable movie.

A fortunate accident
I was about 15 when I first saw the trailer to this movie, at that point in my life, I should not have really liked this , considering who I was back then. Yet I did, the trailer already captured me. I had no one to see it in theater with me though so I never did. Then I forgot the title and could never find it in the video store. Years later, in late 2008 or something. I was sick one day, mom would rent me a bunch of movies. I knew about the Firefly movie so I asked mom to rent me Serenity, that Firefly movie. I was really sick so I could barely speak, so all she heard was Seren. My mom being the good egg that she is, rented both Serenity and Serendipity because she did not know which one I meant. She did not look at what they were about. Maybe it was the high fever that made me dream away with this movie, maybe it was that I actually watch Serendipity trough serendipity but I loved the heck out of it.

To this day I think this one has the healthiest image of love, even if the characters might be some of the more toxic lovers you see in these. Love is not about putting your partner on a pedestal and conquering or being conquered by that person. Love is not going from friends with benefits to more.  Love is about finding that magical feeling of happiness inside you.. that feeling of perfect bliss. Then you dedicate yourself to be with the person that makes you feel that way. These persons can give you, and in essence are the most beautiful gift you can have. True happiness.It’s not about finding who’s  right for you nor about being the right person. It’s about finding that magic of true happiness and keeping that magic alive and about how sometimes you are going to have to be the baddy to find it. Serendipity nails that feeling for me. From beginning to end. While it’s not a highflyer.. this just feels so right.

Selector Infected/Spread WIXOSS: When cute girls, play a children’s card game.

I love card battle animes and when it is presented in a cutesie Moe Moe way as an all girl cast series, I simply could not resist. When I started watching this show for the first time in early 2015 (a little after the second season concluded)  I was expecting a Kawaii Yu-Gi-Oh series with a hint of maybe Digimon due to the talking cards. One episode in I felt I was right about that assumption. Back than I had never watched a certain magical girl anime yet so I could not tell the signs yet, but Selector WIXOSS would completely bamboozle me. I was actually shocked at the story this anime really tells.  This review of (mostly) spoiler free, save for the basic premiss.

A girl and her LRIG

Ruuko Kominato is the protagonist of the first two seasons of Selector Wixoss,  Season one is titled Infected and Season 2 is called Spread, a fourteen year old girl, living in the big city alongside her grandma and brother. She is a simple girl who doesn’t have any deep desires for love, acknowledgment , good grades, beauty or whatever like most of her peers. She comes of a bit as a loner, but isn’t exactly unhappy about it. Her brother however also noticed and gift her a card deck for a game called WIXOSS, the popular card game  all the girls play, at her school. Not having any idea how to play Ruuko isn’t really sure about what to do with it at first, but one night when she actually looks at her desk she finds a very special card that looks like it holds a living girl. This girl can speak to her, albeit somewhat brokenly, and tells Ruuko she has amnesia,, or at the very least her head is very foggy. She has no name so Ruuko decides to name her Tama.

Tama is an LRIG a living card that can be used in WIXOSS battles against other card users who have been granted a living card.  Ruuko has become a selector she finds out, and winning three battles will grant her her deepest wish. There is one problem however. Ruuko doesn’t have one. When the series starts we see Ruuko befriend Tama..almost like a TAMAgotchi, she shows her stuff in the real world, they talk, go to sleep as if having sleepovers and so on. Yet Ruuko notices Tama is missing something, so she dips her feet in the world of WIXOSS which leads to her making new friends and growing into a stronger person. If you have seen any card battle anime, or even anime before.. you pretty much know how it goes.. except you don’t .

Dark , Darker, WiXOSS

This series is a bit of a slow burner, while season one carefully builds a world and gives our main character plenty of growth we as the viewer could at times feel this series isn’t doing anything special and you would be very wrong. Competitive events that grant your wish are nothing new, we have seen it in Dragon Ball, Yu-Gi-Oh heck even Oban Star Racer has it.  On first glance this looks like another generic series following that trope. Yet this series takes a LOT of inspiration from Madoka and assuming you’ve all seen or at least heard about Puella Magi Madoka Magica, you all know that isn’t a very happy show. That show is pretty dark. WIXOSS even goes a step beyond in terms of narrative darkness. While not as threatening or vicious as Madoka, this anime very much knows what it is and thinks very much about the penalties and the rewards of the “wish” system and uses it to create the darkest and most claustrophobic situation players can be in I’ve ever seen in the genre. If you think a Duel Monsters shadow game , where you risk your life …or risk going to the shadow realm if you prefer the dub, is badass, Selector will show you an entire new level of badass. The penalty for losing three times in a row I’d say might be even worse than dying like legitimately , I’d see the “shadow realm” as a vacation after losing after what awaits these girls.

As the show closer towards the second season, we find out this show goes even further than that.  Winning three times in a row..arguably is EVEN worse than losing. Which already is worse than death. I am pretty sure the writers of this series will go to hell after they die, not because they were bad people in real life, because Satan wants to hire people who can think up more evil stuff than himself. Several times throughout the series I have actually felt anxious and queasy by realising what was going on. I watched Madoka shortly after this and when I found out how evil Kyuubi was I kinda asked to myself.. is this it? Not as evil as WiXOSS. So this is a legitimate warning, if you do not like dark stories..this one certainly isn’t for you.

Pretty Dark

While despair and darkness certainly are themes in this show, it is certainly brought to you in a colourful way. The character designs look good, the LRIGS are mostly cute and colourful and their worlds look super pretty. I think the show keeps a very good balance in keeping the visuals humble, as well as their designs yet still succeed into making  those elements that need to be special, actually feel special. Tama for example , who turns out to be a bit of an odd LRIG also feels that way in design and voice and those kind of things. While she wears a very simple white dress and there are no traces of over design you instinctively know she is unique. Card Battle anime tend to be overly designed, Just look at the later seasons of Yu-Gi-Oh or Cardfight Vanguard for example, Monsters appearing on stream are so extremely detailed, with almost World-of-Warcraft-Like armor on them it is almost distracting. Wixoss uses a much more minimal approach which I really liked.

While there is magic and solid combat, never does it detract from the characters. They still feel real. This low key battling style allows you to relate to Tama more, you feel her pain more easily as it’s more “real”  When Yu-gi characters take real damage, they still only take scratches from screen filling beams, cards shatter and duelists get their hair messed up by the wind that’s it. This show relies more on tiny projectiles and actual punches with a much more correlating effect. We see them scream and cry out in pain, which feeds that anxious feeling but also makes battles more investing as their is a much more direct correlation between what is actually happening and what we see. While some can perceive it as dull compared to it’s bigger brothers and sisters I’d say for what this show is, their looks and style is chosen flawlessly. It’s never really mind blowing , but the series doesn’t want you to lose your mind over their style.. it wants you to explode your brain with their story.

Active Anime

In this day and age, anime tends to be very heavy on exposure, characters will figure out stuff for you , and loudly state their thoughts even if there is no one around but the viewer to hear it. It makes it so that most anime are easy to watch lying down on the couch with a glass of wine or tea of whatever you prefer.  Wixoss is NOT that type of anime. If you take it as is, the plot can feel quite convoluted, especially in the second season. While we do get answers to what is going on, rarely ever does Ruuko do that finger snap and go like “ooh so this is why that is happening!?’ In fact stuff that is discovered by Ruuko’s friends might not be magically transferred to Ruuko. Investigation into the story happens on seperate level, for example on the LRIG level and the reality level. Characters making discoveries on the reality level might not have the answers of the LRIG level, so never does one character really have all the answers. Only the viewer does have all the information and even then at times we are asked to fill in some blanks ourselves.  This series doesn’t hold your hand, you HAVE to get invested in it to properly enjoy it.You are going to have to put your brain to work to make some links yourself or the story doesn’t make sense. When you do get it though, everything can click, you’ll be the one that goes like ‘ooooh, now I get it’. In a way the show isn’t the full story itself. The show is the crutch that allows you to see the whole story.

While I do really like this concept I would actually say this is a weakness to the show as it seriously hinders when you can watch this show. Normally watching with friends makes any anime show better. This one I recommend strongly to watch alone. With friends you pay less attention making the story harder..though figuring it out together could still be fun. Yet with friends I’d say you’d feel less of the anxiety and the despair these girls feel, because strangely enough there is to much love in the room. This show is enjoyed best if you can relate to negative emotions. Like if you could wonder how it would be to be absolutely lonely, or how it would feel to see what these characters see. Weirdly enough this is best endured alone. So in a way this show banks on you relating to negative emotions to be as powerful as it can be. You best enjoy it when watching it alone, when you are a bit vulnerable, but positive enough to bounce back and enjoy it. Great but there is a certain amount of RNG involved in how much you will enjoy it depending on your viewing situation. So how do we flavor this?

Selector Flavor

Selector Wixoss is one of the most underestimated anime I ever watched. It left a lasting impression on me which I am sure will also remain there. Some people can not see it other than a Madoka clone, while others swear by it and praise  what it does with it’s own tropes. If you look at it like a Madoka clone, that is exactly what you will get and what you will see. If you see it as a dark Yu-gi-oh and Madoka hybrid you will get way more out of it as it completely does it’s own thing with the card battle genre while still managing to hit the right tropes to feel as a part of it.

The story is compelling and invites you to play an active role in it and investigate alongside the characters. Which works wonderfully well with the flavor of a card battle show. You do try to strategise along, you do try to find out what that face down card could be.I loved how dark this show got and how it made me feel even if that was negative at times. I’d compare it to visiting a scary haunted house where we are going in to feel a negative emotion in a controlled environment where you can feel them without actually getting harmed and still get the positive side effect. This show is a bit like that, the negative being the anxiety and the despair the main characters feel, and the positive of working it out alongside with them and finding hope and strength within it. Like with the main cast, this will not end well for everyone.. so just for this time. I will make you the Selectors! and it’s up to you to select your own flavor. As this show’s rating really needs you as a part of the equasion. The show has more seasons, but to me these two stand strong enough as their own.

(You Decide)
(I Personally would give it Berry Good Flavor)

The Problem with Modern Gaming: Gamers

I love playing video games. As I always was a physically frail kid and my disorder further reduced the joy of “being outside” gaming allowed me to explore wonderful worlds, without the risk of being harmed, being unable to walk or be confronted with my frailty and bad muscles. (My motor skills are mostly impaired in the “crude” motor skills section not the “fine” one.. though still a bit) Yet at the beginning of the 2010’s gaming became less and less appealing for me. The march of DLC , the bigger focus on competition and the rise of the free to play games made the world of gaming less magical to me. Since the 2010’s are almost over it is time to look for the biggest problem to gaming in this day and age. It’s not corporate greed though like most would claim, the biggest problem right now is us…………….

We have the Power

Gaming has changed a lot over the past couple of decades. We used to have only pong consoles, while there were other and earlier games.. realistically the only game you could play was pong. In this day and age there are more games than you can count, and even your average steam library is already bigger than most 80’s or 90 console games catalogues. Yet we are very different gamers now as we were back then. We live in the age of mass reviews. An age where a game is only as good as it’s Metacritic score and of the “hivemind”. Somehow if PewdiePie dislikes a game .. or name your youtube icon of choice,  we have to follow or idols opinion. If the game grumps do not want to pay for vanity items in a game, apparently neither do we. As a result the gamer community has become one huge hivemind of elitism. When Nintendo launches a game we do not like, we burn it to the ground on all forms of social media. We form subreddits to trash the game, we start to slander Nintendo for not understanding their fans and tell people NOT to buy anything from Nintendo anymore.

Back in the 90’s when a game wasn’t your thing.. you would just not buy it. It was a shame that this thing wasn’t for you but you’d just wait until the next one. In this day and age, whenever a big company releases a game that isn’t for everyone..it’s practically a crime that makes us all start a big witch hunt. In a way the large companies aren’t in charge of their IP”s anymore.. we are. We determine if a character looks good, we determine the content we want to see in a game and we determine which game we do or do not want a sequel too. We have the power, which seems neat and could be neat..but we are legion , while we can use this power to make a game we all like, it also bars us from ever getting a game we can truly love. 

We DO have phones!

While I am not a huge Blizzard fan, their games feel too smooth to me, thus always making me feel like I control a character perfectly, rather than be the character , they are one of the biggest example of our chokehold on gaming. We do not like Diablo Infinite.. because we want Diablo 4, we do not lot like Overwatch 2 , because we just want that in Overwatch , we do not like them banning a player so we all unsubscribe from their games. We police everyone and anything right now, if a company CEO is having an affair.. boycott their games, if they release a side project we do not like..boycott the company. Let me say this, WE do not own the IP’s of Blizzard,  nor is it up to us to police the world. We destroy so much with our moral compass. ProJared , one of my most well liked youtubers for example, had his career destroyed over mostly rumors. Sure he still does some questionable stuff by doing the things that he does, but I am not a victim of it, he is open about it. showed evidence and if he cheats or not on his wife isn’t my concern at all. I love his content, just like I love certain games. If the developer or youtuber is an asshole in real life, that doesn’t make their work less impressive. I am sure Rembrandt was a dick as well and Leonardo Da Vinci, might have slept around as well, you don’t see the museums covering up their works. Developers, youtubers or anything related to the industry, for them gaming is a job. Their lives beyond have nothing to do with us, any social justice hashtag or ill behaviour report or corporate decision should not be a death sentence, it should empower the wronged party. allow them to get their word out so that the proper people can deal with it. Not so that unrelated people can join the hate hivemind.

(I bet gamer-borgs, will fly in a Borg- GameCube)

We can not just project our morality on everything nor our values. Many of think mobile games suck, sure I do get that, I am not a big mobile gamer either. Yet when developers like Blizzard get in the market.. or Nintendo we should cheer that one not discourage it. Maybe it is them that takes mobile gaming into the new age. Maybe we can finally get mobile games we enjoy. Back in the 80’s and 90’s we never knew what we were going to get in terms of games. Genres were invented, genius happened, lighting struck! Now whenever a big company tries something new we rattle the cages and say… we do not want “new idea or spinoff we want our sequel on our favorite system, if you don’t give it ..we refuse to look at that other thing’ If we were this snooty and stuck up in the past we might not have ever gotten Mario on gameboy or Mario Kart.  No Donkey Kong Country, we would not have had the MMO genre because people then were sort of unwilling to pay for subscriptions. Yet instead of burning down the company we gave it a chance and it all turned out to be fantastic. While I do not claim Blizzard or Nintendo will strike gold with mobile games I do think we should allow them to try. After all we DO have phones. We could at least wait to burn the game down after we tried it, like we used to.

(I never really liked F-Zero for SNES)

Not everything is for you! Be positive!

Times change , games change and gamers change. Yet not everything has to change at the same rate. Companies need more money to make new stuff or gain support, DLC and Microtransactions are a part of the times. If I need to pay for an extra chapter to gain a new game in the future, so be it. I do not want to pay to beat a game, but extra characters, extra quests or whatever, fine, thats the standard of the time. But not everything has to start at the same time. Just because Fighters already had DLC for ages doesnt mean Mario can’t start on his next game. Just because the Zelda franchise has “innovated” so much with Breath of the Wild doesn’t mean Pokémon HAS to have the same technological leaps. Gaming is not about the graphics, persé, it’s not about the voice acting or technical aspects of it. It’s about the feeling those elements give you. Those technical things might be important for you, that doesn’t mean it is important to everyone. While some prefer professional voice actors, others really like imagining characters voices. Maybe the voice acting was cut, because the game is popular in so many translations that they wanted to keep the quality consistent among all of them, maybe they saved that money and put it towards something else like better servers or to make more budget for another game they are working on. As a gamer you’re entitled to your opinion on a game, you really are, but when that opinion is negative that doesn’t mean we should punish the developers for trying something else.. or for catering to their core audience either for that matter. We now are putting so much pressure onto developers that everything is losing its shine.

We are choking out the voice of the developers and replacing it by the voice of the hivemind. Every game has to be for everyone. It all has to be a sandbox with seamless open worlds, you have to have something to craft, realistic weather, full voice acting, two seasons of DLC, preferably free,  at least and over X many hours on gameplay. Sure I like most of those things as well (except craft) but I do not want every game to feel like that. Horizon Zero Dawn is an open world game that felt very similar to breath of the wild to me. Watch Dogs 3 , has to have skills and possibly wallrunning or melee weapons and begins to feel more like Assassins Creed and  that one now allows you to craft your own weapons , if you find the parts and is becoming more like Horizon Zero Dawn. Nowadays we keep asking for games that play like “something else” and we can get pretty specific in that. If the developer does not abide we destroy them on the internet. It’s like .. when an organisation hosts a convention. Most of them have like at least a somewhat ulterior motive, either to network, to promote their company aside from the foundation or whatever. We should be glad we have it regardless. Because it’s our hobby and our passion to visit these cons.  Yet instead we scrutinise the organisation and tell everyone to dress as harley quinn and joker. Sure everyone abides and we get a decent con experience with lots of cosplayers. Yet in the end we can’t really tell who we talked to nor does anything leave a lasting impression.

(Random Harley Quinns..our games are one of these now)

Games are like that, while our meddling can make them solid enough, we are with to many to ever be creative. We can destroy the superman 64’s  of the world, we can boycott the sonic 06’s but at the cost of having our minds blown. At best we might get exactly what we want, but by being so distrusting and guiding we also prevent our minds to ever be blown in surprise again. That is a price I am not willing to pay, I rather see some stinkers and allow companies to slip up once in a while so I can be surprised at the next one. Take Bethesda for instance, Fallout 76 was a stinker, but we were so vile about it that now we  force to play it safe for the next game. We have our pitchforks ready if they don’t. You don’t expect your grocery store to always have the best sales for you, you don’t expect all HBO series to be like Game of Thrones… so why does a game company always have to do right by you?  When something is not for you.. just grumble in silence or write a blog how you dislike the game…don’t start a flame war. IP’s belong to the developers NOT to the community. Bring back the trust in those who bestow us with games again, instead of policing them into standardisation. Let’s make 2020’s the years of faith, of positivity and of games with unique voices. Our voice is great..but it doesnt need to be everywhere.

When Pink Geeks Try Social

The difference I keep between a geek and a nerd to me is that a nerd tries to avoid social situations. Geeks go to cons, nerds watch blizzcon at home. Geeks play exploding kittens with friends, nerds play it trough tabletop simulator online. I count myself as a geek, but just because I get involved into social situations that doesn’t mean I am very capable in them. My inner geek completely overtakes my social self at times.. and this can be quite awkward. So how do I geek in social situations and how do I try to salvage it? In this post I will highlight how my mind can work different from those I call Normies. The muggles of geekism.  The fortnite players under the real gamers and the people who think the best game franchise is FIFA. There are even people out there who do not game at all, they like prefer to play actual soccer, or go dancing in discotheques. Strange creatures those normies.. Here is how to handle..or not handle them. 

Social Situation 1: Your Normie friends invite you to something you are NOT interested in.

“Hey Pinkie do you want to go to Amsterdam to visit the sex museum and then we go to the  zoo and visit the Heineken store. Do you want to come?” Sociable as I am I say yes of course, but in actuality I think, what the heck is sex, the zoo is very stinky and I do not like Heineken beer, I prefer Belgian Abbey Ales which I can drink a lot in my local pub. Okay I do not actually think “what is sex’ but it just doesn’t do anything for me, so  a museum about sex seems duller to me than staring at Kristen Stewart’s face for 24 hours. There is just nothing to see. In these situations I pretend to be normal and fake interest to entertain my friends. I giggle looking at ancient sex toys, I pretend to be impressed by a lion and when someone when an Amsterdam waiter asks me what I want to drink I say “I don’t care what it is.. just as long as it is much’ During our drinks we talk about the weather and tv shows I do not watch and I pretend that I might go watch them. My normie friends are into those reality type shows where someone has their own hair salon or where they like act like neanderthals on an island where you can only talk about sex and booze. My normie friends are sweet but sometimes I can feel like a real alien amongst them. I do not agree well with the casual television, everywhere there seems to be an obsession with sex in there. Like I get why sex is nice and all.. but what is the point in seeing others have sex.. what is funny about seeing the first dildo?  I mean I hope it helped the lady .. or guy who invented it I guess but I do not really find it more lewd than a back scratcher same need.. different spot. I am aware I think oif these subjects differently than the general populous so during events like these I am swimming in my head a lot  

One of the normie friends is someone I really care for, she is like a duckling I feel a need to protect. Yet she also is very close minded, I need to act normal and do the mundane with her, or she will feel sad and misunderstood. So I do my utmost and swim away. When swimming in my head I feel lost. She for example tells me that she hopes that Farmer Bob should really choose Hilda as his girl instead of Laura in the tv show.. Farmer looking for a Wife (Yes that’s an actually massively popular tv show here) . She then proceeds to gossip about women she hasn’t even met yet and tells something about how Hilda and Bob bonded over picking green beans, she knows I do not watch the show so she talks about all the emotions. When she asks me if she if I would pick that true green bean love Hilda.. or stupid good looking Laura… I know which I have to say.. but I have no idea why. I can not see why other people care about some farmer and some girl. I mean.. I hope farmer bob finds someone but I don’t know the bloke.. nor would I from watching tv.. so let him pick who he wants.  Small talk during these events can be a hassle. So what I do to solve this is one of either two things. Option 1 I keep engaged with other things… that’s a nice purse is it new.. shal lI get us another drink.. should we get a snack as well? Something to keep me busy.. oftenly resulting in me getting drunk or overeating. The other thing I do which seems to work is make things personal. Instead of farmer Bob’s romantic endeavours I bend the subject to not be smalltalk anymore. “What do YOU think over bonding at green beans, what would you like to see in your romantic partner’ I can talk about that kind of stuff as it concerns my friends. I like finding out what makes them tick.. but as a result of our differences I can’t really talk about “that new commercial or the new flavor of M&M’s .. let alone the sex/romance talk of people I never even heard and thus can not care for. Sometimes I feel like I am Frasier Crane…but poor.

Social Situation 2: Your Normie friends invite you to something you are VERY MUCH interested in. 

“Pinkie do you want to go eat Sushi and then visit a Karaoke Café?” Oh my Arceus.. YES! YES! Sushi has become mundane enough for everyone to enjoy but I am the kind of girl who orders Saké with it, yells Kampai and Itadakimasu! Regardless who I bring. I know about Saké flavors based on how they are numbered, I want to eat Fugu one day and know a fair bit more japanese words than my Normie friends. Sometimes that excitement can’t help but spill out. “Pinkie , you are doing it again’.. when I ramble on about my favorite words I know in Japanese. In once like rambled for like 15 minutes on end when a friend of mine asked why some Saké was cold and some was hot. If someone mentions the weird vending machines in Japan .. I ramble on night… yes this gets my passion flowing! Lemme talk! I love everything geeky and during food it can get a bit akward, I am a low key foodie, who knows my flavors so when we eat sushi I talk about the importance of Umami and stuff. Awkward and I bet to the disinterest of my Normie friends but this I think is fairly common. 

(How people react when I talk about Sake or Sushi)
(And just because I found this and thought it was to cute not to share)

If we take it one step further and move on to the Karaoke things get very weird. You see , my karaoke is VERY different from their karaoke. I am used to Karaoke at conventions and that is my jam, but the theming is very different. To me Karaoke is sing the pokémon theme song with everyone together, or Let it Go. Well kids, that’s not the Karaoke you really get when out with normies, to a normie karaoke place. They expect Paradise by the Dashboard Light or No Woman No Cry. This happened once to me during a weekend in Antwerp we found a Karaoke bar and had to go in. Remember what I told earlier about abbey ales? Well there is a lot to try in this Belgian city so I was nice and loose and decided to go with the classic musings of Jason Paige. They DID have it for me to sing.. but I did not really check the audience in the bar very well. As I sang my heart out I was met with utter silence and confused stares why this followed Meatloaf. Even my friends did not sing along at least not the second verse. Even in my inherbiated state I kept watching to the stage left  to see if a guy with that weird hook staff thing would not come up to yank me by the neck off stage. While that did not happen I really wanted to leave the bar quite soon after I was done.
While I had fun while singing afterwards I felt so alien and unwelcome in the bar, watched as well. I felt like that pug dog from men in black. So then we went to a monastery café to drink some more abbey ales.  Yet I rather make a fool out of myself than not have a story at all. Just be aware that not everyone will like your thing and do not let it discourage you to be you. Just have your fun……… and then bail.

Social Situation 3: Clubbing

‘Hey Pinkie let’s go to the club’ the dreaded question. I do not like going to the club.. but to spend some time with my friends sometimes it is the only option available to me. I put on some make up, dress up my hair , play the little who is driving game (I can’t drive so  I just play judge) and travel to that big club, to let myself be deafened by the same tunes I can hear in my local bar (which I llove to go too with my geeky friends by the way) I overpay for my drinks and for even being there and wait till the rest gets tired of it and goes home. While I can’t say I have a bad time at the club each time it is a very neutral experience to me. I like talking to my friends, but in a club that isn’t very easy.  To me clubbing is the biggest mass dillusion the common folk does together. Why do we go to the clubs? Honest answer , I think people go to clubs to find a mate. And while you could go and argue “me and my friends just want to dance on some sweet sweet music’ let me add that if you go out just to dance, there is no need to wear a fancy dress all that jewelry and more make up than a harley quinn cosplayer. To some level you want attention from those  who do not know you. Clubbing isnt about spending time with your friends, it’s either about making new friends , showing oif your moves or finding someone to help you ruin your sheets with you. Now all that I am saying is assuming random clubbing.. say your David Guetta is playing in a club , I can see it maybe being different but I am talking about your standard saturday evening clubbing. That is all about peacocking to what you hope to achieve. For some reason we delude ourselves into it being a fun group activity.. but clubbing really is about yourself. I mean sure as a girl you can flirt with a guy .. by dancing with a friend and wingmanning is a thing for guys.. but clubbing is about you. It’s about you getting what you want from that place… and there isnt really anything I want from there.

I am not a huge music fan , I like listening to it fine, but it doesnt have that magic appeal that it seems to have for everything else. Music for me is not something I enjoy as a stand alone thing. It’s the seasoning that can make my blogging more pleasant or my roleplays more epic. I have fond memories of the ducktales moon theme because it came with an experience not because it is just composed well. I like video game concerts because it reminds me of video games. Rihanna, Justin Bieber, Kanye West all those icons mean nothing to me nor their music.  I do not care about their world or that lover that got away , the new love and eventually another heartbreak. I don’t know them so I don’t really care about those songs about matters of the heart. I am not that into it. My favorite normal songs, if I even have any they are about random stuff. So I do not go to a club for courting , nor for the music and there usually are better way to talk to my friend so in a club I tend to feel lost. To entertain myself I study people. What do “normal” people do to pick someone else in the club. What are actual opening lines that work. Why do they work. Being and Identifying as a female .. (marginally) interested in other females in a less than average sexual way isn’t really people pick up upon. Girls flirting with me .. and sometimes even boys is mostly completely lost on me.I’ll socialise with them like any other person I meet and attempt small talk but I all seem them as just being nice. Like they see me standing there being awkward and want to help me like I am a deer staring into the headlights. Sometimes this is true .. but other times they actually take romantic interest in me. I can pick up on any social cue just fine, In fact I can usually read people very well to a point where I can tell really small social cues, like friends not feeling well, or keeping a secret from me. Yet flirting is the one thing I do not get.  I can determine it well enough to see that I might be flirted with and I can ask myself.. Are they flirting with me, but I never seem to be fully able to grasp it. Which makes clubbing a very odd experience. 

Over time I have given up on being normal. I now mostly act like myself. I still sing Disney songs on Karaoke nights, I still geek out during Sushi and when Farmer looking for a Wife is on tv I make sure people know I am steering clear of it. Even that normie friend who is so frail , as well as myself is going to accept I am who I am. I can still socialise I just can’t do it when I am pretending to be the person you want me to be. I might look like an alien at the social venues I visit, but at least I now visit them as me. Despite looking awkward , I have my own fun at these kind of social things and while it might not be reaction your average person react. Why everyone has to have the same feelings about these tv shows, about sexuality, music and how to act around friends is beyond me.. Man being normal sure is weird!

Top 5: Galar Pokémon

Pokémon Sword and Shield has been out now for a while, but I needed quite a bit longer to finally complete my pokedex. Now that, that is done it is time to rank them. Which ones do I love the most. To keep the feelings of as many pokémon possible safe, we are only going to use pokémon (currently) exclusive to the Galar region, so tyrogue doesn’t have to worry how I feel about it or feel bad that it did not make the cut. That being said I love waaaaay more pokémon than just these five. Gen VIII did a great job in coming up with new pokémon. My method of selecting my favorites is not based on anything in particular, just my general love for them. One can enter the list because it’s adorable or because I really want to use it in competitive play all the same. So let’s get started with my number 5.

Number 5: Dracovish

Galar has THE best fossil pokémon in the entire series. Conceptually at the very least. Of course this not include lord helix, praise be to lord helix, father of all. Archeops had always been my favorite fossil pokémon and that had a very bad ability but now there is an amazing pokémon, with an even more amazing ability. Dracovish is such a derpy looking pokémon that endears me to it. It looks .. and basically is .. a fish head on a dragon’s body, and while it probably suffers just from existing.. man do I just want to give it a hug and yell out that wonderfully pun-like attack of his. First let me explain it’s existence a bit. Normally fossil resurrectors are respected scientists who revive your fossil with the respect it deserves. In Galar all fossils are in bad quality and have broken in half. The fossil scientist rather than letting you find two matching pieces to resurrect lets you  created 4 sets of mis matches from the dinosaur fossil, the dragon fossil, the bird fossil and the fish fossil. You can not combine two fish fossils, no sir.. you can only make a fish combo with the dinosaur and the dragon. if you choose the dragon and the fish…we get Dracovish. 

On first glance he seems a bit mediocre with a 505 base stat jack of all trade. However he actually has a solid enough speed stat which makes him a viable target for a choice scarf. This makes Dracovish completely broken and OP. You see it gets the move Fishious Rend (I love that name) a Water Type bite attack that has an 85 base power that doubles if you strike first. Now a 170 base power move is already impressive for a physical attack but this little fishy also gets access to the ability Strong Jaw, which increases the the power of biting type moves by 50% .. this effect applies after doubling. So now the move is a crazy 255 base power. I think I have not mentioned yet that Dracovish is a Water-Dragon type yet. even though it might have seemed obvious. This means Dracovish gets the Same Type Attack Bonus on Fishious Rend increasing it with another 50% occuring after Strong Jaw. Meaning this move.. when outspeeding a pokémon is 380 (I think there is no 2 option) THis already makes it one of the strongest moves in the game..but it gets even better. In Galar setting the weather to rain is extremely easy due to Dynamax Water pokémon setting up on default, the wild area featuring a lot of rain and the fact that there is plenty of rain users. Inside the rain.. the power of water moves is increased by another 50% making the base-power of Dracovish in competitive a terrifying 570. The strongest move we ever saw in a pokémon game. Set your EV’s to attack and speed, equip it with a Sash and it can even oneshot plenty of pokémon that resist the attack. What can I say.. I really love when powerhouses look this derpy.

(Art by Trash Theremin)

Number 4:  Wooloo

Luckily this pokémon needs a lot less explanation why I like it so much, it’s just cute as a button and I wish it was real. Wooloo has been done to death in memes, which is a sign that is generally well liked. While I am not the biggest fan of it’s evolution I really like how gamefreak made Wooloo such a staple of the Galar region. Up until the first gym, which is about two hours into the game they are everywhere. They play a big role in Galar and they are just too adorable to ignore. Wooloo are able to walk but their preferred method of traveling is rolling up as a fluffy ball and tumbling into objects they want out of their way or rolling around to their destination of choice. It is just so cute. To an extend  Hop (your main rival) even gets a bit of a story arc. We see it from being his beloved pokémon, to being outcast because Hop needs power, when Bede makes him lose his way. We see Wooloo being swapped of Hop’s team and feel the painful decision he had to make. As a pokémon player at one point or another you could make the choice between power and friendship with your pokemon.. and most of us will at least at one point have chosen power instead.

Wooloo is that one pokemon we all actually really love but still cast aside to have a better team. Luckily eventually Hop gets him back and will after that always use Dubwool (the evolution) as the first pokémon he sends out. (Protip..it rarely has non normal moves.. so when fighting Hop lead a set-up/buffing ghost and you will always win) showing he chose his love for pokemon over his desire to wield the strongest. This little arc made me so happy for that little pokémon that I loved it even more. I am currently in the process of Shiny Hunting a Wooloo, because it’s shiny looks amazing. Wooloo is great.
Grookey is Green, Sobble is Blue. Wooloo I love… Woolooloo and now you love it too!

(Art by PsyKoTMK )

Number 3 : Galarian Rapidash

I thought this would become my favorite pokémon ever when I saw Galarian Ponyta and while it really loved it, it did not resonate with me as much as it could have had. It’s face is just a bit to smug and it just isn’t as lovable as i would have wanted. That being said it’s still an amazing pokémon. It can learn such a wide moveset that it is completely customisable.  During my run I ran with a very unbalanced team, (lots of fairies, heavy poison weakness , few steel counters) but my Galarian Rapidash covered for that. It ran with a psychic type, ground type, electric type and dark type move. Covering all it’s own weaknesses plus electricity for fun. A solid physical attack that looks pretty and elegant and best of all is a unicorn! I mean I can tell you about it’s abilities , how it’s a great scout when you run it with anticipation, or how pastel veil which protects all your pokemon from poison, makes it great for double battle. Yet thats not why it is on my list. It is here because it is a unicorn. I could tell you that it can also run, fire, bug grass, fairy and normal moves and has plenty of set-up utility as well so it’s a very versatile to use pokémon. Yet it is on this list for no other reason than that it is a unicorn.  I could tell you about it’s pale white shiny which kind of makes it look like the pale horse, the horseman death rides upon at the time of the apocalypse. Yet .. unicorn. I could tell you that it’s a unicorn but …. oh.. I guess I am finished with this bit.

Truth be told Galarian Rapidash is something you either love or hate. It not a high tier pokemon for competitive but it’s a wonderfully customisable pokemon that you can truly make it  your own. I love this in a pokémon but at the same time Galarian Rapidash falls into that same trap hole all those others do. It doesn’t have a lot of flavoring on its own thus I will always end up really liking these kind of pokemon but they can never be my number one.  But hey it’s design goes a long way for me, I can have my rainbow unicorn.. and that rainbow also applies to it’s typings.

Number 2: Polteageist

Half of my team I used for the last chunk of the game , came from Glimwood Tangle. A mysterious fairy tale forest that holds some incredibly powerful and useful pokémon. Honourable mention goes to Hattrem and Hatterene who are incredibly powerful pokémon. Yet these two I will save for another post on Galar coming up in the near future. Another Glimwood Tangle pokemon I liked was Sinistea. A cute little teacup pokemon that can evolve into a teapot when you pour it’s tea into .. a teapot. When it evolves into said teapot it becomes my favorite ghost type ever and to boot my favorite teapot ever.  Polteageist is a beast of a pokémon very much suited for competitive play. I named my Polteageist Earl Grave…after the tea..but dead. I ran it with a simple said, Willow Wisp to cause burns and harm their physical damage , which Polteageist can be vulerable too. Shell Smash to boost my offensive and speed stats in trade for lowering my defence, Giga Drain for recovery and Shadow Ball for STAB raw attack power. However I did not realise Polteageist’s true potential yet.

You see if you take it to the move reminder it can learn the move Stored Power. A psychuc type move that upgrades for each stat boost you get.  Since this pokemon has the ability weak armor, which buff’s it speed but lowers it defence for each hit it takes, it is quite easy to buff out already. Shell Smash however raises 3 stats. So in a single turn you can already power this move up by A LOT. Willow Wisp helps it survive some hits, and give you even more boosts. It can sweep entire teams if you manage to swap it into a sleeping pokemon or just be a bt creative with t. While it doesn’t have the best shiny in the game, it does have a PINK shiny which makes shiny hunting well worth it ..for me at least. Wether you are a competitive battler o collector of cute pokémon, this mon definitely will be your cup of tea.

Number 1: Allcreamie

It isn’t that competitively it doesn’t have a vey wide moveset, it doesn’t even have a very nice shiny it doesn’t fit it’s theme very well. It’s also NOT a unicorn. Yet for reasons I can not  fully explain I adore this little whipped cream pokémon. I just love it’s design, it’s cry, it’s mannerisms it’s flavoring.My love for the pokémon started early when it was announced. A desert pokémon that is a fairy type that you can decorate and give a sort of custom look .. seemed quite amazing.  Since then my love only deepened. I encountered my Whippy.. my beloved Allcreamie on Route 4 near the first gym..still a Milcery back then. The cutest little cream pokémon. Reading up about it I immediately fell in love with it’s evolution method. You give it sweet to decorate it with.. then while it is dancing with joy, you spin around…to whip that blob of cream. Depending on how long you spin , when you spin , what direction you spin and more you can give it different types of flavors and colourings. It’s amazing, it’s fairly european, it’s cute and completely unique to allcreamie.

This most likely will also mean that this might be the only game it will be in, unless you transfer it. Galar is all about dramatic poses and the spin will allow your character to do that.. Jojo Style. If you can not spin in the next game… maybe we can not get 28 different varieties of Allcreamie.   I already fear this saying something about how much I like this pokemon. It has been my most trusty companion on my pokémon journey and has a nice enough moveset. If I could take any pokemon from the game and make it real, I would choose Whippy. I would choose it over wooloo or over my unicorn. When I choose a bowl of whipped cream over a unicorn or a floofy ball off love, that whipped Cream is something truly scrumptious, even if I can not fully explain why. I guess that’s just how love works sometimes.

X-Men: Dark Phoenix. Can my Money Rise from the Ash as well?

I have been a avid fan of the 90’s x-men fox-kids cartoon. While a big Patrick Stewart fan I have never really liked the early 2000’s x-men movies. I am in the McAvoy professor X camp ever since the opening scene of First Class. Even after I saw Logan. I even casually liked X-Men Apocalypse. So imagine how happy I was when Dark Phoenix was announced , the movie that would tie in one of the best cartoon arcs with the professor I liked most of them all. Yes I liked McAvoy X more than the animated one. Now that the movie is finally out on Blue-Ray I finally got a chance to see this one (did not have the money to see it in theater before).  Now that I’ve seen it I really wish I did not spend any money on it.

What Happened?

I really don’t like to be overly negative about a franchise that I so far have really liked. So I would like to start of with something positive…………..Man that would have been nice. If I could say that at least the action was good or how it is neat that the costumes pay tribute to the classic comic look. I guess McAvoy’s and Fassbender’s acting is solid…enough. I genuinely tried to be invested in this movie but everything felt off to me. How did this turn into such a dumpster fire?  The ingredients for greatness are there, they even had some great subplot ideas , but nothing is ever used. This movie is not about the X-men at all. It’s all about Jean Grey and the actual X-Men that are in fact still X-Men are just present. There is no team, this is a movie about clashing ego’s and division, which could still wok had they not focussed on that one singular character and made other characters actually compelling.

I knew this movie had received lackluster reviews before watching this , but so did Apocalypse and I enjoyed that, even on second viewing. I reviewed basically all the McAvoy X-movies well above the general critic reception. This movie gets a 23% on Rotten Tomatoes and I still think that might just be a bit to lenient. I actually found this movie to be unwatchable. How could this have happened to such a beloved series of mine. 

Dark Writing

Well let me start with highlighting how atrocious the writing of this movie is. We begin with an exposition scene on Jean, how she lost he parents in a car crash. The plot twists that follows about 45 minutes in is already clearly telegraphed here. One of the parents survives..but of course is afraid of Jean and gives her up to Xavier. We do not see this yet but we do already know it is going to happen. Meanwhile the doctors are talking to each other over a 8 year old Jean fading in and out of consciousness wondering how to tell Jean her parents are dead..which is not true. So the drama of this scene has been amped up, while in actuality they would not even have to deal with that situation. The sheer negativity of kid Jean in the scene where she first moves too Xavier’s school for the gifted added to that already telegraphs we are in for a rough ride. 

Twenty minutes in we see an interesting conflict forming though. Charles is now a hero as his X-Men save the day where they can, working with even the president himself. Now that he is being praised Charles pushes his X-men to risk themselves so he could get more praise, much to his sisters Mystique’s dismay. During a mission Jean, who now like all other X-men can breathe outside of our atmosphere, explodes by solar energy but turs out to be okay. Charles gets to shake hands with some big wigs and loves the outcome of events while Mystique sees they nearly lost a team member.
Two camps form, do the X-men have to sacrifice themselves for the weak and those who formerly hated them or do they also need to look out for themselves. While this is a weird route to take Charles Xavier I sort of liked it as it made him more than a standard good guy. The brother sister rivalry rising again could be very interesting….and it is completely discarded after an event about 35 minutes in. After that it becomes the big character betrayal show. Beast wants to murder someone,  Charles refuses to take responsibility for his actions and becomes a self righteous sack of excrement , Jean claims she can’t stop killing, while she only had one incident of her dark side harmed people. Magneto has become an shinng example of self control and so on.  I wondered if this was supposed to be set after Apocalypse or if this was like a universe of it’s own. Which is never a good thing.


Except for Hank (beast) Charles and Jean all characters are paper tin. Mystique has some good lines but those never go anywhere in the end. Of course there is also the aliens who want to take over the world using Jean and the Phoenix form, but without any effort these Aliens can already pose as high level security people throughout the entire movie… so  I am not sure how they would be unable to achieve the same feat trough subterfuge. They are very powerfull on their own regardless, but fine. Jean can’t read their minds out of plot convenience, which again feels supercheap and as we ping pong around allegiances we see some pointless action scenes leading to a cringeworthy ending that once more is very untrue to the very natue of the x-men and the school for the gifted as established earlier. Ouch that was rough.

Dark Looks

Luckily the random flight suits they found have been replaced by actual x-men uniforms that do not look edgy this time. In fact it resembles to look the x-men had back in the earliest days of Scott and Jean.  Nice? No they do look very tacky, I liked the look of the first-class suits, which also referenced the traditional design but this felt cheap. Like as in.. lets not waste money on this so lets hoist them in a cheap overall with an x on it. Everything felt so budgety.. Scott wears his visor off missions instead of his sunglasses, which dehumanises him , Mystique looks very much like a cheaper makeup job and even beast’s blue face felt off. It is hard to describe how cheap and proppy things felt. Take scots vizor for example, it’s nice they gave him a visor but they made it silver.  Which does not match his outfit, or even regular clothing all that much.

Why would it be designed that way by Hank, who designs all their stuff why not make it blend. Why did he rebuild the black bird again, after in the last part it nearly killed everyone and it actually killed Havoc. (The Black Bird looks cool though) Nightcrawler’s face has become less detailed somehow and Quicksilver’s slow time scenes aren’t as fun and smart as in the other movies either. The movie makes some weird choices for example Magneto’s powers now no longer have his sound effect of warping metal, now when he and Jean duel, they just hold their hands up and movie magic does the rest. Apocalypse, Days of Future past and even First Class had some rich effects here we see some cheap glows and battles that mostly involve telekinetic throws and the effect that are there are weird. We see Jean EXPLODE insde an exploding space ship and when she falls out unharmed everone is just like… “well thank the writers for that’ while no one wonders why she is not harmed more. Or how she survived floating trough space for a sold minute. Nightcrawler had to have a fsh bowl taped to is suit to survive in space.. luckily there is ducktape and a fish bowl on board of the blackbird… but hey thats writing again. Whle the movie doesn’t look “wrong” I felt it was on a very tight budget on everything which kills any suspension of disbelief. You can not get sucked into a movie when you notice the studio’s budget choices.

Dark Acting

With actors like McAvoy and Fassbender you are sure to have a few good scenes in you movie and they do deliver a solid performance. However the poor writing does present itself in what McAvoy can do with the character. His decisions lead  to a major death and Jean going insane and when confronted by it he refuses to accept his role in this. He even takes the loss very well, which feels like a betrayal of the character. In the scenes where Charles is like this McAvoy plays him apathetic and somewhat arrogantly which feels like both a mismatch to who Xavier should be or to the tone of the scene. It just is not the Charles we have loved for the past three movies. Same goes for Fassbenders Magneto, who now is an bit of a recluse on the small island (and I mean like 100m2 or so small) of Genosha, which is off the american coast now. His pain is gone… he is in control of it now as he accepts it is a part of him. Yet he is very happy to fall of the bandwagon and kill again without much semblance of the plagued man that is Magneto. This man now is a guru of calmth and tranquility. It’s not bad.. I just could not believe it this time around.

Which brings us to Sophie Turner. Lovely girl and I am sure she plays her version of Jean in the way she wants, because she is a solid actress.   Yet Jean here felt so flat to me, I never felt she was in actual pain or actually confused. I never actually saw killing intend in her eyes.. unless it was CG’ed in.and even then that’s mostly due to the color signifying that things ae about to get real. Her shouts, her cries her emotions it all felt very contained and flat. Which before I liked about her acting. I like how Sansa is like that as well instead of all the over dramatic soap stars. This is not Sansa we are talking about though, in fact it’s not even really Jean. We need a rawness, a ferociousness and an unfiltered energy that goes beyond control.
Instead I see Jean who has a really bad time of the month. Jessica Chastain as a villain is a bit of a mixed bag for me.  Since she plays the alien Vuk she can get away with sloppy acting as it just makes Vuk look more awkward and strange. However the route that is chosen is just so easy. It’s like every alien pretending to be human ever.. with maybe a bit more lore dumps. It’s not bad because there is no objective way to call it bad as each mannerism can be defended by..she’s an alien…yet at the same time that same type of acting gives us nothing to like about her either. 

Dark End

So comes an apparent ending to the professor McAvoy age as they have pretty much written themselves in a corner. It saddens me that this the movie that ends the line.  Logan have a great ending to the mediocre Wolverine series and original X-Men movie run and I wish Dark Phoenix could have been the Logan of McAvoy. It had all the right ingredients yet none of the magic. This was a movie not made out of love for the series but to squeeze out on more movie, for revenue sake. It doesn’t do the Phoenix or Dark Phoenix justice, it doesn’t even respect it’s previous movies properly. While I can see people would still like this movie and this is in no way a crutch for other people to hate it, this movie did absolutely nothing for me.


I felt empty while watching it and wanted to turn it off several times. When one of your favorite storylines in the series can’t even keep your attention in a movie , you know something is very wrong. I doubt it will surprise anyone but myself that I have to award this movie the lowest flavor tier. This movie definitely killed the series and I think only a complete reboot can make it rise out of the ashes again.

Trolling with a bludgeoning Angel

Welcome again island guests. As anime fans I am sure you oftenly get questions about you hobbies. These people asking questions can ask you various questions some more sincere than others. “If I were to try anime, what would you recommend” is most likely one of the ones everyone has heard by now. A Shounen or a Ghibli movie are you most standard go toes in such cases. However, there are also people who ask questions like ‘Anime, isn’t that the weird japanese cartoons where everyone tries to fuck little girls and they do that stupid magical girl stuff?’ The stereotypist tries to have fun at our accounts. Even if you explain them there are many subgenres they and there are plenty of different stories they do not listen or forget and next time you bring it up again,  they talk about tentacles or japanese weirdness again. One of my friends kept doing this so when he asked to watch anime with me , as I had no money to go out, I showed him Bludgeoning Angel Dokuro Chan.

Baka-Baka

For you that don’t know this show is about the misadventures of Sakura Kusakabe a thirteen year old boy who at the age of thirty three would develop the technology in which women do not age past the age of 12, so he can create a Pedophile’s World. Unbeknownst to him however this technology also makes these little women immortal, which pisses of god. So god sends the bludgeoning angel Dokuro-Chan to kill  Sakura. Dokuro who looks like a twelve year old girl gets feelings for Sakura and instead tries to keep him busy enough so he is unable to invent that technology 20 years in the future. This often results in situations where she uses her angelic strength to kill Sakura to teach him a lesson on how to behave, after which she brings him back using the spell Pipiru-piru-piru-pipiru-pi.

These kills are always very bloody and nearly always involve decapitating him, tearing his face off or causing other fatal wounds with her mace Excalibolg. She also turns one of his classmates into a monkey, which no one seems to mind and barely even notice.  Another angel is send to finish Dokuro’s original mission named Sabato. Now Dokuro has to both save Sakura from death, while murdering him over and over again to teach him some manners and prevent him from turning into a pervert. The protection part of course is done by oftenly stealing Sabato’s halo, which obviously gives her cray diarrhea. I am such a good friend, if my friend wants to watch anime and he only thinks weird magic and sex with little girls is anime, I oblige. Sometimes I wish I could marry myself, I am so helpful and clever and if you mess with my hobbies, I mess with you back. Teehee.

Please! Don’t glare at me like that.

Dokuro-chan is one of those 10 minute per episode anime, that since its original run have since come bundled on various sites and media. Episodes can be disjointed from just walking around to school to going on a field trip. You can watch the entire series in less time than t would take you to finish a random marvel movie, with a lot more dead and blood and at times better jokes. However this show is completely bonkers. The opening song along has some very clear SM themes and considering they are sung by a “twelve year old”  girl that will already show you how far away from reality ths show stands. Characters all have hugely inflated persona’s without having much depth, but I at least think they are all hilarious. Think of it like if South Park only consisted out of Eric Cartman’s and Randy Marches and throw in a bit of Rick from Rick and Morty as well and let them interact with each other. It’s about that level of odd. If you step on my hobby, I’ll lock you in my living room and beat you silly with the silliness you expect I am into. Of course I took into account that my friend might request the show to be turned off, so I invited some of my anime friends to join us as well. The more the merrier, my friend agreed and said to go for it. Yet now he could not ask me to turn it off , because with a few drinks my other friends were really into this fun little show.

During the first few episodes you could see my bigoted friendstruggling, afraid that I’d kick him out of my life if he left early or that my friends would hang him if he would ask to watch an easier show. While in reality I learned that this friend asked for anime because he wanted to gossip about my hobby to another girl whom he had plans with the next day, I still love my friend and trough teasing a bit back.. that’s just how I show my love. 

Bloodstained-All-Over Dokuro Chan

About three episodes in I began to notice a change n my friend though. He gotten over the initial weirdness and began to appreciate how different it is to the media your “standard Normie”  usually consumes. You can watch South Park, Family Guy or Rick and Morty and those shows are not THAT different from each other. Sure the latter is a bit more out there and caters to the abnomal a bit more already but it’s still very dependent on pop-cultural references and catering to the same vices, being drugs booze and lust like most of our comedy. Dokuro-chan is REALLY out there on the absurdity scale were even common logic doesn’t always need to apply which results into something unpredictable and seemingly random. My friend began to appreciate seeing things he never saw before, of having a sense of being completely gobsmacked. I feel, like wester media is made from the imagination of the target audience, we treat our audience as dumb and they need to GET IT , because god forbid you show doesn’t gets a negative review. Anime and Manga I feel myself are made much more with the content creator in mind. They think it is fun, they like their joke and you do not NEED to get it, but credit to you if you do then you can share the love. This is what I love about anime it doesn’t feel stale as it isn’t bogged down by expectations and that is what my friend kind of figured out as well.

I might have punched him in the face with an anime that’s definitely NOT for starters and toyed with him for not showing me seriously it actually had results. When we neared the end of the story and the whole Pedophle story neared full circle he was genuinely laughing at the discovery and liked that it wasn’t stated directly but he kinda had to discover it on it’s own through the weirdness. Of course he got the theme song stuck in his head and final episode , we sang it all together…. to get it out of our head and because we had a substantial amount of alcohol already…because it’s that type of anime, it’s one you throw on when a party is getting a bit stale and you want to energise people with laughter and just have some silly no brain fun. Each kill, each splatter of blood and nearly each action is just meant for comedy sake. It is exactly what the “non-believers’ think anime is but more. I might have kind of stabbed my friend in the back by setting him up like this, but at least I did not leave him in the cold and showed him the fun of weird.  That’s just how I show my love.

Pipiru-piru-piru-pipiru-pi

When the show was over we talked a bit and for the first time he kinda listened that there were other types of shows but that he kinda made us ridiculous by thinking all anime was this. So I just showed him HOW ridiculous things can get. Realising fully well that not everything  could be THIS zany he made that connection or something. As he is a big slasher/horror buff we ended up watching a few episodes of Higurashi as well. He asked me if there were any horror anime on netflix and I told him that if any slasher like anime would ever make it to Netflix it would probably be Future Diary/ Mirai Nikki which he would say he would definitely watch then. He could even see the appeal of the weird. Anime has the reputation of being weird, perverted and infantile and while Dokuro is exactly what a Muggle-Weeb (or is it Weeb-Muggle?) thinks we watch it still has something to say. When you watch CSI, or NCIS o Criminal Minds or whatever show, we do not hear the voice of the writer. We hear the voice of the test audience. That’s why we see so many similar episodes across the shows…because people like “the crime committed in the sky” or the “man who got murdered without a weapon’ so that’s what they put in.

While anime also relies on tropes, these tropes are engines that drive the plot..rather than the plot itself.  We like magical girls so we get a lot of those shows, how those shows unfold however can go any way. This gives anime and manga a much stronger voice than your average western show. Dokuro REALLY makes this clear. Why it is never briljant, never THAT clever and not well written at all , Dokuro s very much Dokuro. It’s it’s own thing. Compare it to a roller coaster. Most of them have loopings and corkscrews and run really smooth. Dokuro is a coaster with some many elements of her own in it, you might very well dislike. Instead of rapid descents it like has a staircase.. instead of loopings it has a seesaw and instead of an acton photo somewhere you get like a party hat. Disjointed but unique. So whenever your real life friends keep making fun of your love for anime force them to watch Dokuro with you (and make sure they cant leave) .. they might die a little inside at first but trough Dokuro’s spell they will come back to live again… either more open minded…or just punished for talking bad about you beloved anime. 

Pipiru-piru-piru-pipiru-pi!

Adorable Games: A Hat in Time

Hey Island-guests welcome back to paradise. By now you will have noticed I am really into cute stuff. I prefer cuter anime, I am a plushie savant, I really like pink stuff and cute little critters and so on. So unsurprisingly I like cute games as well.  Gears for Breakfast produced an adorable little platformer called A Hat in Time and it quickly grew out to be one of my favorite games. Two DLC packs in and a launch on Nintendo Switch in later, I want to share the love on this island.

As mad as a hatter

The plot of this collect-a-thon platformer is simple but wonderfully weird. You take control of a brave space traveller, by the name of Hat Kid. A young girl who lives all alone in her vast spaceship which is fueled by time energy. One day she is close to home when suddenly in mid space there is a knock on her window as the mafia shows up. Something goes wrong in this encounter and her time vault breaks open causing the timepieces, to scatter on the planet the mafia guy was from. Hat Kid goes to the planet to recover her missing timepieces.

She finds a friend in a mustachioed vigilante named Mustache Girl who decided to help her. But after realising what the time pieces can do she quickly turns on Hat Kid and decides to use the time pieces to destroy all that is evil … in an evil way.  So now the race is on, to acquire enough time pieces to get Hat Kid home at least and stop Mustache Girl from her genocidal vigilantism. During your journey you have to collect enough yarn to create a series of hats that will grant you new abilities, while making movies, selling your soul and dealing with the Mafia. A simple premiss that is given shape by some wonderfully weird and flavorful characters.  The writing is so funny and all the characters come alive. Even the scrubby mafia’s which are basically your equivalent to goomba’s in this game get a voice and some personality. Near the end basically everything does. A Hat in Time creates such a wonderful wacky and colourful world you keep wanting more. Each character crazier than the last but also unique and the proceedings in each stage nice come together, for a neat and somewhat touching conclusion.  It is not a story that is meant to wow you, but you will constantly go .. .. awww thats so cute or charming. It also never seizes to surprise. The moment you find Hat Kids hidden pillow-ford and read her diary it only keeps getting better.

Hold on to your hat

This all is presented in lovely gameplay that is best represented in the silver age of 3d collect-a-thon  platformers. The age of the Nintendo Gamecube like Sphinx and the Cursed Mummy , Whiplash or Mario Sunshine. Hat Kids natural moveset is fairly similar to that of the plumber but without that weird all water jug that he since.. only takes out for smash. Like most non “icons”  of platforming Hat Kid has a double jump, which the big names never actually used but similar to Mario Hat Kid has a dive, can walk tightropes and she has a wall jump/ Hat Kid unlike Mario can do a little free running dashing up a bit as she wall jumps though, a nifty little trick that even puts Rayman’s ledge-grab to shame. Like Sonic n his 3d adventures she has a homing attack as well that can also help her get around.  It is a very dynamic moveset that allows for pinpoint accuracy and uses the best of all the greats, while still feeling as her own. That sense of uniqueness mostly comes from the usage of the hats. Hat Kid gets access to six hats that allow her to do all sorts of neat stuff.

Her basic hat is he iconic top hat, which allows he to focus on mission objectives. The sprint hat gives you a speed boost and later on can even give you access to an adorable mount. The Witch Hat/Concoction had allows you to blow up certain objects. Her snow-cap allows her to use special transportation pads to launch the girl around the various stages. The Dweller had can materialise ghostly platforms or dematerialise “dreamlike”  blocks. Her ultimate hat is the Time Hat which can pause time for a short amount of time. This kid isn’t just about hats though she can also customise these hats by equipping badges which apply several modifiers to the game. Like a featherfall, the ability to not bounce of walls in a dive or even a big beam attack when hitting with her Umbrella. She is one fashionable kid that knows how to get around. This all controls near flawlessly with you always feeling that any mistakes make are your own fault and not a poor control scheme. While the camera can give you some trouble at times, this very sparingly happened though and I could even see Gears from Breakfast doing this on purpose to get that nostalgic feeling. There would be times where the camera jittered where t made me more nostalgic than annoyed. The graphics are colorful and vibrant and the music, dear god how I love this music. I actually own the soundtrack to this game.. and this is the only piece of music I actually own because I am not to big on music. I adore this soundtrack and each stage has amazing musical framing and the boss themes are even better. By far my favorite Indie-game on the technical side.

Throwing your hat in the ring.

The base gameplay is way harder to explain than one might think. In essence we are dealing with a standard platformer but each stage is completely unique and every objective within that stage can play out completely different.  The base game has four stages and forty time pieces, the two dlc’s add two new stages, 13 time pieces and a whole lot of other content, and then there are fan-mod levels which are highlighted as a genuine aspect of the game including achievements. There is a challenge mode as well as both online as offline co-op. Regardless of what you play your objective is always the same. Get the time piece, how you achieve this can differ greatly. From a simple platformer challenge to a murder mystery and from an mission where you have to assassinate an outhouse to stealthily infiltrating a movie studio. A Hat in time takes you on a unique adventure that you will want to complete from beginning to end. Even within each stage you goals are vastly different. In Maffia town I hunted golden tickets in a treasure hunt, I played the floor is lava (literally)  and had a footrace ,against a guy on a rocket. In Subcon forest, I assassinated that outhouse and played hide and seek to save my life, from a super yandere. In Dead Bird Studio’s I defused a bomb and did a PR tour.. and then so much more. Every objective feels carefully crafted, like a miniature game of their own. Filled with great voice acting, funny jokes and tooth achingly sweet moments. All ending in one of the most satisfying and heartwarming conclusions I ever saw in a platform game, that sort of breaks the fourth wall.. yet also makes perfect sense is this vibrant world.

The two DLC stages are completely unique as well and both I can wholeheartedly recommend.  The game has a solid lifespan for a platformer, depending on your skill the base game will last you between 10 and 15 hours, which is solid for a 3d platformer in it’s price range. The DLC and mostly the co-op and challenge mode adds many more hours and now that fan levels are a thing there is a healthy amount of gameplay time…at least for the completionist and trust me this is a game you want to complete.

Tipping my hat

Aside from the 50+ time pieces there is plenty to collect. First there are the buttons I mentioned earlier you can get from a strange glitchy vendor, whom you pay with pons, the currency of this game which you also collect and use throughout various stages. Then there are the hat flairs, color schemes and soundtracks. You an get these from completing so called time rifts, pure platforming focussed stages, that seem very similar to the FLUDDless stages of Mario Sunshine. The hat flairs can reshape your hats, and these can be very cute..if you get lucky. These are locked behind a RNG slot machine… which is a shame, luckily fan stages offer you a coin and gathering 3 allows you to use a slot machine to get more. Base game will disallow you to get everything but as the game is now, the joy of collecting just is greater. Downside to the RNG however still is, that you might have completed the entire game before getting that color scheme or flair you really wanted to use.

The DLC added some stickers to collect to decorate you umbrella with to make your character look more unique and accomplished in online or offline co-op games , fun but a bit more hollow than all the other collectables. My favorite collectable however are the artefacts. Each stage has a cute little artefact to complete, once completed you unlock a puple timerift, which allows you to find a children’s picture book telling the story of that stage.. or another cute story. These artefacts are in hidden packages scattered throughout the worlds.  Completing them and assembling them on you spaceship allows you to read Hat Kids thoughts about them, surprise surprise, they are adorable Same for the story books! Keep your eyes open when playing this game and dont be afraid to explore, the game rewards you thoroughly.

Hats off to Hat in Time.

By now I think I made it clear that this game has won me over completely, move aside Mario, Hat Kid is here. Gears fom Breakfast has made this game that oozes love and cuteness. It’s clever, clean, cute, funny, invententive and more. If you like Banjo Kazooie, if you like Mario Sunshine or whatever 3d platformer is you thing, this game is one you should not miss. This game is probably my favorite PC game ever and most certainly my favorite Indie-game. While it does have it’s quirks and could technically improve some minor things these are all nitpicks that hardly blemish a game that shines brightly from beginning to end. Hat Kid deserves it to be one of the great platforming heroes of her generation and she definitely deserves a sequel. A sequel that I am sure that will come, I will eat my hat otherwise. Luckily this hat has a delicious flavor.

I am BACK!

Hello again Island Guests, the resort has been closed for a far while but after doing some mental cleaning I am finally back again. To start off let’s discuss a bit what has been happening with me over the past few weeks. 

Identity Crisis

In real life I try to be more and more like my online persona, the cheerful pink bubbly me, which I actually consider to  be the truest version of myself. However there are several obstacles in my way to do this. These include my health, but also my family situation. I am an advocate of unconditional love, of being yourself to the fullest, love me for the geek I am and not for the normie socialite I on occasion pretend to be to make things easier and all. On my birthday and date of my last post my dad made a one minute telephone call to me to congratulate me on my birthday, but that he did not have any time to spend with me for the next month or so. He had no time for my birthday or for me, he had one day available to me but unfortunately that day I had made a solemn promise to a dear friend. Something important to that friend, something in the geeky nature. This friend has always been a devoted follower of my tabletop role plays but since his education had called him away on roleplay nights we never saw him anymore. Due to his social anxiety we could also not see that friend in social situations so we decided to host him one big group night, ages before my dad told me that was the only day he had available on my birthday. No matter how important things are to me, if I make a promise to a friend I stick by them, unless I am utterly unable to do so.  So I told my dad , that this date did not work out for me and that I promised to give my friend whom I haven’t seen in ages and who missed us dealy a geeky night centered around him.

This was not to my dad’s liking and he told me to stop thinking the geeky things are important, while he blew me off for his band pratice the day before he was available. This friday I would see him again finally and we could talk things out, something I desperately needed, his brother is giving this big Christmas party and he was supposed to show .. as his employee. It would be the only time my sister and I see him before christmas and New Year too. However he cancelled these plans because he could go to some snooty Jazz concert he preferred over seeing his own kids. The whole , christmas spirit along with the message of unconditional love and togetherness made me realise, that I did not have that. It broke me, perhaps I had to change perhaps my search for identity is misguided and I should just be who the wold wanted me to be, perhaps I did not matter.  All those happy families on the commercials are also perfectly normal. 

The toxicity of happiness

The season did not really help, mother is working with christmas, my sister is moving up north to celebrate at her boyfriend’s place. While I do not particularly mind being alone, the season of happiness emphasises that something was wrong with me. I am not looking for a romance, I am not looking for that sitting near a fireplace and carolling together. Yet the way the season portrays it is, that if you are even remotely loved, you’ll have to spend the holidays together or you are NOT loved. I am more likely than not, to spend Christmas day, and potentially boxing day alone. Something I do not inherently mind, but the tv is making it seems that that means I am unloved. Something I do mind.

November and December are enforcing this to the extreme and are causing me extreme discomfort. It’s the month where I choose to betray myself to gain that fake TV happiness or where I am Alienated even further than I already am. It’s a month of toxic happiness Bigotry and Commercialism try to suppress individuality . While I do have some people who’d want to celebrate Christmas with me.. it’s just something that isn’t happening this year, which is not bad .. but  it is made to be so. Even if I don’t have a merry christmas for perfectly valid reasons, the season depicts it as if it means I am unloved .. something am really vulnerable for right now. 

No Rest

While I keep struggling and can’t really find my footing until these dreadful days are over, there also is no safe space for me. My place is being cleared of asbestos which means that every week day from 7am to 4pm I have construction workers, chopping ot windows, woking on metal scaffolding, hopping on my balcony and shouting in front of my windows.. day in day out. I live in a seven floor studio, if I lay in bed they see me… they will comment on it. If I play a game they will shout at me that someone like me should not play games or just some other stuff. It created a constant state of anxiety and restlessness that completely broke me down. i did not want to be at home because of the noise, but I did not want to be n the city either because of all the enforced happiness. My best friend, seemed to be moving away from me (which in the end she did not but for the last two months it seemed like she would move a lot further away)  meaning she had little time to lunch and only had to look at houses further and further away from me. I could not go to here either like I used to. My most geeky friends turned very reclusive due to similar reactions to the holidays as me as well.. but instead of still ..kinda wanting love.. they just live through their avatars in their mmo’s .. meaning I could not hang out with them anymore either. No place was safe, no where could I catch my breath let alone reset my mind to begin blogging again.

Charlie

It all would change when I had a salon-day with my sister and mother. Mother tried to make a deeper effort to understand me and who I am at that day, we had deep talks and improved our bond, which wasn’t that bad to begin with..just a bit alien at times. Mother is somewhat classical and wanted to look normal in front of people, over the past few years she little by little came to accept that people can accept her while not being the standard either which led to us becoming closer. During the two days we were there we find out who we truly are and to stop filling in ideals that might play in each others heads. It was during this time if I could look over my sisters dog for the weekend. His name was Charlie, a toy poodle (it’s a real dog type not an actual toy )  that has a hint of something else in it’s blood. That was the weekend I really got some unconditional love from the little creature. The three days I could spend with it gave me a second wind, restored some of my ambitions and beliefs. My day with mom and my sister laid the groundwork and Charlie really helped me build the stairs I needed to crawl out my hole. Of course Charlie had to go home again after the weekend and I cried my eyes out after he left, but it felt like an emotional blokkade had finally left me.

A void in me had been sort of filled. A dormant side of me woke up and for the first time in quite a while, I felt alive and that the things I preach feel real again. Charlie gave me my voice back. Unfortunately since the dog is just Co-owned by my sister and a complicated situation there I am unsure if I can get Charlie to stay over that more oftenly, we bonded super well but I do not want to further that bond of those complications can take Charlie even further away. So while the happiness is fleeting  it is real nonetheless. It was enough to bring me back and ready myself for a new season. On Pinkie’s Paradise I can decide my own holidays, I can be the me I want, I do not have to be like those people on tv. I can finally relax again! So resort is back open boys girls and all you lovely non-binaries.
Welcome back and welcome back me!

My first day in Galar

Hello Island-guests. Today it is time for a new blog, and of course we will be talking about Pokémon. A diary of my characters journeys across Galar. This will mean some spoilers for the Sword and Shield games, although most of what is revealed in this first installment will be part of the common knowledge.It should come to no one’s surprise that I am really enjoying this game. The issues people have with these game either come from rushing or holding expectations based on different IP’s from different developers and I think both are unfair. Sure these games are not technical master pieces, but no pokemon game ever was. Sure the story mode CAN be resolved kind of quick, but that’s not even the point of playing a pokemon game. Yes not everything is in the game , some pokemon and some moves did not make it. People say that gotta catch em all is no longer applicable.. but it NEVER was , those others you just transfer from other games, this changes nothing of Galar’s collections aspect, we can start over again at an equal playing field. It only changes what pokemon we can use in competitive, and most of those who complain aren’t even in that scene. So quit nagging people and enjoy a really solid game the way it’s meant to be played. Slowly.

Pinkie’s journey begins

Dear Diary, today my pokemon journey began, it all started out like a normal day and I was watching Chairman Rose introduce us to the wonderful world of pokemon, he showed the cutest elephant pokemon and I want it!  Can you believe that in other regions the professors do this speech. The old hag Magnolia barely gave me any time of day! Her assistant is kinda cute though. I was watching someone challenge our champion Leon, who kinda has a weird sense of fashion. I wouldn’t call it bad.. but it kinda is. Like a cape and a weird hat and I could swear he is wearing pants under his shorts. I mean we girls wear leggings and it kinda looks like those, but why would a manly man like Leon wear them and why add a pattern to those leggings … I mean ewwwww.  He just doesn’t really look nice face down… he can pose though but hey I can pose too!

Anyway Hop came in.. I think he has ADD and went hyperactive that we had to go to his house to meet his brother. He ran ahead.. I swear he is like a combination of that Barry guy from the Sinnoh region that was like a rival to the hero of space and time and Hau .. the freeloading Malasada guzzling lovable goof who was like best friends with the first Champion of Alola. He kinda looks like a combination of those two too.
Gaaargh…..Leon wasn’t at his house and we had to go all the way to the next town to pick him up from the station and then run back. I do NOT like using my running shoes. In the end it was great though Leon gave us some starters so we could participate in the Gym challenges. Since Hop already had a Wooloo I could choose first I chose Sobble , because it cried when a berry fell in it’s pond. I decided to name it Neno. Hop picked a Scorbunny  and when we had to battle he already used two pokemon! Kinda unfair if you ask me…but his Wooloo went down so easily that my Sobble leveled up and allowed me to hit Scorbunny super effectively. Yay!

A mysterious encounter

After that a wooloo entered the forbidden forest and we had to go in and save it. Of course Hop  just ran ahead so I had to deal with a bunch of Skwovet, Squirrels with a weird name and tendency to eat my berries. I also encountered a bird named Rookidee, it looked angry so I had Neno knock them all out for me. Then I encountered a wolf in the mist. I thought it ate Wooloo and that it would kill me as I could not hit it at all.  It was very strong and super mysterious. So everything went white . Leon came and saved us as Hop did nothing but comment. Leon never saw what we saw and he told us to get our pokedex from Professor Magnolia.. and Hop ran off. I had to go the long way around and captured a few pokemon. Cool huh! I feel like I am the only person ever in existance in this world who can capture pokemon before getting this weird expositional talk while clearly everyone in this world knows how pokeballs work. I managed to catch a woolooi I named BeepBeep, one of those squirrels I named Nutella and even some others.  I only planned on using BeepBeep though, and I would take this little fox pokemon along. I decided to name it Barrelroll. I mostly like BeepBeep though.

So I tried to train up BeepBeep and I noticed how in the Galar region pokemon grow very differently from that in other regions, it turns out they have an item called EXP share, our pokemon do that naturally. But where the the item distrubutes a small portion of EXP our party gets like half the xp they would have gotten had they actively been in that battle. If they are in that battle they get full experience. This means we can easily bring full teams along from the earliest parts of the game and check out all sorts of cute evolutions.  The final Pokemon I caught in route one was called a Blipbug I named Freddt. I went home to kiss Mum, yes we call her Mum here in Galar and we also watch the Telly and not TV, and went to the old bags lab with Freddt in tow. Turns out she wasn’t even there! I had to move ANOTHER route. Like these shoes were not made for walking! So of course I had to shop first.

Shopping and Hopping

So I decided to go and shop and I picked some super cute pink clothes rather than the grey and green Mum picked for me.. I mean my name is pinkie after all , you gotta live up to the reputation. Shopping in Galar is quite expensive though so perhaps I should fight some trainers with Neno , Beepbeep and Freddt . So that’s what I did. While fighting other trainers I also managed to catch a snapping turtle which I send to my box early, and a cute dog named Yamper. Which I added to my squad under his new name of Buttermutt. It’s funny because it has a heart shaped bright yellow butt. It’s moves are super nice to capture new pokemon as well so as some plumber from some country just south of the Kalos Region just said “let’s go” .. ……. back to the shop to get my pink shoes and pink hat as well. All pinked up I was ready to move to Professors place. Doing some more battles along the way. I noticed how I enjoyed the music and the rich saturated colours in the landscape. Sure I have seen like cards from like the Hyrule region that looks a bit more beautiful, but I think we should be glad with the beautiful landscapes we have gotten. Compared to like Unova or Sinnoh this place is absolutely stunning and our pokemon also feel somewhat less stiff than those of Alolan ones.

Professor Magnolia gave me an app… for my phone… jeez… thanks I guess..  no way I could download a pokedex in the appstore myself in a world where everyone has pokemon?!  Yet something good came from the visit anyway. I got to battle Hop again, if we proved our worth as trainers to Leon he might endorse us to take part in the pokémon league competition. Like that’s kinda cool right?  How the strong look for young talent to find someone who will eventually surpass them and push their skill with pokemon to the next level. Like a metaphor how the pocket monsters we know and love can grow into Kaiju, so  can our trainers from young ones grow up to be a poorly dressed champion. Or like how the pokemon franchise started out as simply professor Oak’s research with him believing there were only 150 pokemon to knowing there is almost 1000 now. From being just his research to being like puns on teacups and with tv shows and movies. But I am getting off topic again. I could battle Hop again, I could see how much he train…..he ran over here again and barely bothered to train didn’t he….  yep… BeepBeep trashed his sheep, Neno washed his bunny and Freddt evolved into a Dottler. It’s like a bug night light with LEDS. Two meteors struck like a meter from our battle field revealing stones about the size of a wristwatch. I think the impact should have killed us all, but hey we didn’t so good for me.  So we spend the night at the old woman’s place and Sonia showed up and told us more about HER research or her work for the professor at least. She told us about dynamaxing and how the phenomena is only possible in the Galar region and more stuff. The professor just made Leon gave us our endorsements so now we had to go to Motostoke. Luckily we could go by train.  It will save me a big walk! Yay!

So far along I really enjoy this new pokémon adventure, the galarian pokemon are cute and overall well designed by Arceus, I visited some cute towns got some cute clothes and heard some cute music… though I am not sure if  that plays in my head or is actually there. No other trainer ever mentions it .. but it always changes when I battle. I really like the tracks so far. I like the new experience system because it makes pokemon battling available to so many of us and the story I embark on seem to have just a bit more invested in making me seem special and relevant, making it more credible that I am heading into some great adventures.  Of course the pretending to be me already made it a lot further into the game and but she decided that this was enough content for one day. So apparently soon the next part will follow where I explore the wild area and face the first three gyms. In that part we will discuss the quality of puzzles , and the wild area feature among other things so stay tuned for that… Wait why did i write this weird stuff in my diary?