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October 2012

Bootleg Reimu Hakurei Nendoroid

There are many a guide describing the horrors of bootleg Nendoroids and how to avoid them but let’s have one more.

I already have a bootleg Haruhi nendo set and a bootleg Miku nendo because I was much younger when I got them and did not yet know about bootleg figures. I keep them for sentimental reasons since they were gifts and I’m a big sucker like that.

My latest acquisition, though, was made at AX this year. A few things should have tipped me off. While a legit nendoroid for $40 wasn’t unheard of, seeing a Touhou one was. I would have never bought it if I hadn’t thought the Jlist both was legit enough to not sell me a bootleg. Another thing that should have tipped me off was, again, the price. Not the average price of a nendoroid but the average price of anything from Jlist. Figures are always insanely expensive.

I suspected it a few hours later (after buying an actual, official Mayuri nendoroid) but didn’t confirm it until I actually got home. I left her in the box until now (so incensed was I) so I decided to take some pictures of her terribleness.

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Jormungand Episode 15

I said back in my first impressions of the season that I didn’t question watching Jormungand at all. The first season was okay and enjoyable so why not continue on? Season tro has exceeded the expectations set by the first season. Well, not that I really had any. Though I’d never have believed it if you had told me that in a season as good as this, that it’d be Jormungand I could barely stand the wait for.

I did think Hex was going to be a bigger antagonist but I guess it makes sense symbolically that she’d be taken out at the same time as R. Plus the way she went down was so big and over the top and such a perfect representation of Koko’s grief and anger that it wrapped the arc up perfectly. I’m unsure if Bookman will continue as the antagonist now since he lost both of his most prominent agents but that scene at the end (where he kind of seemed insane) implies he might be?

I also enjoyed the Koko we got to see in this episode. She’s usually calm and collected but she got her first wham moment when R revealed he was a spy and the second when she thought Jonah might die and it was going to be him or R. Even her telling R that it was fine and she wouldn’t tell anyone seemed very very slightly hysterical. If Jonah were to die, hypothetically since he might be the one who walks away from everything instead of her, she would snap like R thought she would. If she ordered an air strike to kill one person as revenge for R, I can’t imagine what she’d do to avenge Jonah.

We’re probably not going to find out Koko’s motives until the very end but I can’t wait. Telling Chinatsu before she was shot as well as R and Hex mentioning it in this episode has really hyped me up for that. Since Koko was worried about becoming a monster, I have to wonder if it’s something maybe good? Since Miami was there for the rockets and she didn’t want her technology to be used for wars. I’d like to believe that’s true but I’m not going to hold out for it. Still hoping it doesn’t come down to Jonah vs. Koko though.

(Also, while the week wait of each episode is terrible enough as it is, my love of the first soundtrack makes the wait until the end of December for the 2nd OST almost unbearable)

Project U-Ta-Hi-Me

I had been looking at M3-30 stuff and wandered off to miko’s Alternative Ending site to see what she was up to. It was there that I noticed her part in Project U-Ta-Hi-Me (プロジェクト ウタヒメ). I hadn’t heard of the game before then and actually I’m sure a lot of people haven’t but I think it’s such a cool idea. The game was already released so I set about finding it. Luckily, it was available on a number of sites similar to DLSite (since I couldn’t download from there) and I was able to buy it from Game Liner since they had Paypal and were a lot more lax about everything.

Project U-Ta-Hi-Me is a shmup featuring music original music by IOSYS. The ‘bullet’ patterns are generated by the music and, yes, you can even play music from your own library as long as they are in MP3 or WAV format. I really like the select screen since you simply scroll through your selected folder and plays the song for you. (Songs with Japanese characters might not play if your computer isn’t set to (I assume) Japanese locale but I restarted it with Applocale and it worked fine)

IOSYS is also releasing a soundtrack for the game this month at M3-30 featuring the songs they did for the game as well as a few remixes of those songs.

The game itself isn’t that hard. The skins determine what kind of obstacles you’re going to have but depending on what song you picked, the ‘bullet’ intensity will differ. At first I didn’t think the length of the song really mattered but I picked a song that was only a 1:32 to see when the boss would show up and even though the boss shows up later and you don’t have much time to defeat it, you’ll still lose if your song ends. Though the boss will show up well before the end of a song in a longer one so as soon as you beat it and collect the Noise, the song fades away.

The gimmick carries this game though. It’s fun playing to your own music and on top of that it looks really good (AKAZA does all the main art). The stages all seem very… Madoka inspired. The television and piano levels both remind me of H.N Elly and the sweets skin is obviously reminiscent of Charlotte. You can pick different skins that serve as the level. There is a story but the game doesn’t really follow it. You pick a song and shoot. There are only a few skins right now but all the Coming Soon skins seem to indicate an update with more.

If you’re into hardcore shmups that are insanely difficult, this isn’t really for you. If, however, you’re looking for an entertaining, nicely designed way to pass the time without any real skill at shmup games, I’d definitely recommend this.

Available for 980 yen ($12) on Game Liner

“New Madoka Magica Show Considered After 3rd Film” Rant

I like Madoka, sure. I’ll admit that I was pretty bored around the second episode and was only really watching because it was the it thing at the time. Episode three happened and that’s when I was hooked. I guess that was the plan and it happened to a lot of people. I remember being at work and knowing spoilers were on twitter and it would drive me insane. It’s been one of the only shows I had to watch without subs just to see what was happening and find out what really happened later. I don’t care if you think it is or isn’t a deconstruction, if it’s deep and meaningful or if it’s overhyped, I found it above all else, enjoyable.

At least, it was enjoyable.

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