Ponies and Crash Bandicoot

I nostalgia’d. Who else remembers this?

1 Comment

Filed under Ponies, Random

It’s 2012! / I am a Brony

First post of the new year. I can’t believe I still remembered to come back to this ruddy old place. I’m surprised it hasn’t been hacked yet. Then again, this blog is probably not worth the effort. It needs an overhaul real badly, but whether I’ll ever muster the time and effort to do so, I have no idea.

Nevertheless, this seems like a good place to practise my writing. It would seem that I’m inclining towards writing fiction again, so doing blog posts would be a great way to flex my writing muscles.

I suppose I should start by saying how 2011 was for me. It was pretty normal to be frank, mostly spent in National Service doing my mandatory two years. I’m in the bomb disposal division, and 2011 was a great year for me as I in particular had not been activated a single time to respond to war relic finds around the Singapore island, unlike my other colleagues.

Image

That was until September 2011, which proved to be a pivotal point in my life; I was brought into the brony herd. After nearly a year in existence, I finally came to know of this groundbreaking children’s series known as My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, and the accompanying Internet phenomenon that is the bronies, a legion of mostly male college student fans of the show who compose a good fraction of the netizen population. A friend of mine had posted a pony reaction video to my Facebook wall one day and, curious to know more, I stumbled onto Kyrospawn‘s Youtube page, which hosted a vast collection of similar ‘reaction videos’ comprising of snippets from each episode of the series, which could be exploited to express one’s personal reaction at something, especially in places like Facebook where Youtube video embedding is supported in comment posts. Like every other brony at the beginning, I was initially sceptical about a moral-of-the-week series featuring pastel-coloured ponies with names like Twilight Sparkle and Fluttershy, and found myself questioning my sanity as I watched the first two episodes of season 1, which appeared in every way to cater to the younger population in terms of script and story. But I gradually grew more and more attracted to these vibrant, adorable characters as I sat through each subsequent episode, until I finally said, “screw this, I’m a brony.” At that point of time season 2 was just beginning, and that re-ignited excitement of eagerly looking forward to a fresh episode every Saturday night, lost ever since I stopped watching cartoons on TV, helped foster the brony-ness inside of me. It didn’t hurt that a local TV channel happened to be airing season 1 too. Meanwhile, the fanart and fanfiction artfully crafted by the talented brony community was increasingly gaining more of my attention on the Internet. 17th September marks the date that I stopped hunting for Touhou and other anime fanart on sites like Danbooru, instead pursuing pony art on DeviantArt and Ponibooru, according to my Pictures folder.

Of course, pony/anime art is still more than welcome. Applejack is best pony. Click for source.

I’ve pretty much stopped thinking about Japanese subculture by now, something I have always thought impossible. I haven’t dropped by dannychoo.com in ages, and despite going gaga over Fate/ Stay Night when it came out I couldn’t care less about the most recent Fate/ Zero. I haven’t watched a single episode from any anime for the longest time, the only exception being Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt (which I initially thought was a silly series) because of this video.

For some reason my Figma collection is still going strong. Figma Akemi Homura from Puella Magi Madoka Magica is the latest arrival in the Figma family here at home, although that can be attributed to the fact that I’ve pre-ordered her months ago way back before ponies. Figma Mami and Sayaka are on their way too. Maybe I’ll do a review and snap some pictures when I have the time. No promises.

Leave a comment

Filed under Blog, Ponies

Figma Homura

336973_10150482828989350_554899349_8372286_476789615_o

Leave a comment

January 2, 2012 · 13:53

Video Game Awards 2010

Animax has been extremely gracious in granting me exclusive VIP access to their eagerly-awaited upcoming television event, the Video Game Awards 2010. 2010 has been an exciting year for gaming as it marked the release of several highly-successful titles like Call of Duty: Black Ops, Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood, Halo: Reach and Red Dead Redemption.

I’ll just cover the main highlights of the show, mainly the award nominations and the world-premiere video game trailers. I’ll leave the rest for you to enjoy on your television screens. ;)

This year’s VGAs were hosted by none other than the most awesome guy on the planet, How I Met Your Mother’s Neil Patrick Harris!

No, he didn't ride a unicorn at the VGAs, but that would've been so awesome though!

Neil was also nominated for the category of ‘Best Performance by a Human Male’ for his work in Spiderman: Shattered Dimensions.

Among other guest appearances was the very svelte, half-Chinese (glory to the Chinese people!) Olivia Munn of G4 TV’s Attack of the Show. If you’re a dannychoo.com reader and you find her name familiar, then you must have seen this post.

And now, the nominations!

Game of the Year

■Call of Duty: Black Ops
■God of War III
■Halo: Reach
■Mass Effect 2
■Red Dead Redemption

All of these are excellent titles in their own right, and almost equally matched in my opinion, so I could never have guessed who the winner was.

Studio of the Year

■BioWare
■Blizzard Entertainment
■Bungie Studios
■Rockstar San Diego

I played Halo more than Mass Effect, Starcraft II and Red Dead Redemption, so my hopes were on Bungie. ^_^

Best Xbox 360 Game

■Alan Wake
■Fable 3
■Halo Reach
■Mass Effect 2

I was quite impressed at Alan Wake, so I was glad that game was given a nomination for this category. Though, its odds were stacked against big guns Halo Reach and Mass Effect 2.
Best PS3 Game

■God of War 3
■Heavy Rain
■ModNation Racers
■Red Dead Redemption

Best Wii Game

■Donkey Kong Country Returns
■Kirby’s Epic Yarn
■Metroid: Other M
■Super Mario Galaxy 2

Best PC Game

■Fallout: New Vegas
■Mass Effect 2
■Civilization V
■StarCraft 2: Wings of Liberty

In my opinion it would have to be Civilization V. The Flagship has returned!

Best Handheld Game

■God of War: Ghost of Sparta
■Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker
■Professor Layton and the Unwound Future
■Super Scribblenauts

Super Scribblenauts would’ve been my pick hands-down for being so creative and comprehensive, with the only limitation being the player’s imagination.

Best Shooter

■Battlefield: Bad Company 2
■BioShock 2
■Call of Duty: Black Ops
■Halo Reach

Naturally, this is a tough call.

Best Action/Adventure Game

■Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood
■God of War 3
■Red Dead Redemption
■Super Mario Galaxy 2

Super Mario Galaxy 2 is one of the few Japanese games nominated in the VGA 2010. I guess 2010 hasn’t exactly been an exemplary year for gaming in Japan.

Best RPG

■Fable 3
■Fallout: New Vegas
■Final Fantasy XIII
■Mass Effect 2

Best Multiplayer

■Battlefield: Bad Company 2
■Call of Duty: Black Ops
■Halo Reach
■StarCraft 2: Wings of Liberty

Wouldn’t you like to see who won? :D

Best Individual Sports Game

■EA Sports MMA
■Shaun White Skateboarding
■Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11
■UFC Undisputed 2010

Best Team Sports Game

■FIFA Soccer 11
■Madden NFL 11
■NBA 2K11
■MLB10: The Show

Best Driving Game

■Blur
■ModNation Racers
■Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit
■Split/Second

Split/Second introduced a new concept in twisted-metal racing, Power Play, that would please fans of car crashing to no end. I’m glad for its nomination here.

Best Music Game

■Dance Central
■DJ Hero 2
■Def Jam Rapstar
■Rock Band 3

Best Soundtrack

■Def Jam Rapstar
■Dj Hero 2
■Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock
■Rock Band 3

Best Original Score

■God of War 3
■Halo Reach
■Mass Effect 2
■Red Dead Redemption

It would have definitely been Halo Reach for me.

Best Graphics

■God of War 3
■Heavy Rain
■Kirby’s Epic Yarn
■Red Dead Redemption

Isn’t it interesting to note that three out of four nominations here feature sex scenes? :P

Best Adapted Video Game

■Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4
■Scott Pilgrim vs The World
■Spider-Man Shattered Dimensions
■Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2
■Transformers: War for Cybertron

Best Performance by a Human Male

■Daniel Craig as James Bond
■Gary Oldman as Sgt Reznov
■John Cleese as Jasper
■Martin Sheen as The Illusive Man
■Nathan Fillion as Sgt Edward Buck
■Neil Patrick Harris as Spider-Man
■Rob Wiethoff as John Marston
■Sam Worthington as Alex Mason

I’m torn between Neil Patrick Harris, Nathan Fillion and Sam Worthington. This is some pretty good competition.

Best Performance by a Human Female

■Dame Judi Dench as M
■Danica Patrick as Herself
■Emmanuelle Chriqui as The Numbers Lady
■Felicia Day as Veronica
■Jennifer Hale as Commander Sheppard
■Kristen Bell as Lucy Stillman
■Tricia Helfer as Sarah Kerrigan
■Yvonne Strahovski as Miranda Lawson

Kristen Bell all the way! /fanboy

Best Independent Game

■Joe Danger
■Limbo
■Super Meat Boy
■The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom

If you haven’t tried Super Meat Boy yet, you should.

Most Anticipated Game

■Batman: Arkham City
■BioShock Infinite
■Gears of War 3
■Portal 2
Can’t wait for Portal 2!

Most interesting of all was the award for Best Video Game Character. Apparently notice was given to the studios behind Assassin’s Creed, God of War, Red Dead Redemption and Call of Duty to create video presentations featuring their titular characters who were up for nomination. In each video the character speaks directly to the audience.

Ezio of AC: B takes some time to express surprise at his popularity outside Italia and reminds us to continue to fight against the Templars.

Kratos from GoW:3 takes the opportunity to rage and display dat sword.

And, much to the frustration of many, Sgt. Frank Woods of CoD:BO has nothing much to offer at all, except his ‘hammered-shit’ looks. Shot in SOG operative Alex Mason’s first-person view, as is usually done on Black Ops.

[you-tube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0j33oTzk1QQ]

Special Announcements and World Premieres!

Here are those I particularly took note of:

Bethesda Studios announces their latest project, Elder Scrolls V Skyrim, set for release on 11.11.11

Resistance 3 is set for release in September. Very nicely shot Live-Action trailer, mixing in elements of gameplay footage.

NetherRealm returns with their latest Mortal Kombat instalment, featuring a very special guest…

What has Bioware been working on all this time, after the success of Mass Effect 2? We find out right here.

Blue robot, orange robot? C3P0 and R2D2 in my Portal 2? >.<

To kill a monster… You must become one. Guys, we have a new Prototype on the loose!

And finally… Batman gets new game this 2011!

All in all, it seemed like the awards were spread pretty fairly this time… Most of last year’s big titles walked away winners of either this award or that. How interesting this is, considering that the VGAs had constantly been flamed for its online voting system, with critics calling it nothing more than a “popularity contest”. It really makes me wonder if the organizers behind this awards show really did expend the effort to determine which game was the best at what, or if they were just celebrating the successes of 2010′s hit titles by giving out random lauds. Nevertheless, the stage shows were spectacular, with innovative use of Augmented Reality sequences, a violin performance of a Halo: Reach soundtrack, a band performance by My Chemical Romance, and some of NPH’s signature stand-up humour. What up?!

Game of the Year
* Red Dead Redemption (Rockstar Games/Rockstar San Diego)
Call of Duty: Black Ops
(Activision/Treyarch)
God of War III (Sony Computer Entertainment/SCE Studios Santa Monica)
Halo: Reach (Microsoft/Bungie Studios)
Mass Effect 2 (Electronic Arts/BioWare)

Studio of the Year
* BioWare
Blizzard Entertainment
Bungie Studios
Rockstar San Diego

Best Xbox 360 Game
* Mass Effect 2 (Electronic Arts/BioWare)
Alan Wake
(Microsoft/Remedy)
Fable III (Microsoft/Lionhead Studios)
Halo: Reach (Microsoft/Bungie Studios)

Best PS3 Game
* God of War III (Sony Computer Entertainment/SCE Studios Santa Monica)
Heavy Rain (Sony Computer Entertainment/Quantic Dream)
ModNation Racers (Sony Computer Entertainment/United Front Games)
Red Dead Redemption (Rockstar Games/Rockstar San Diego)

Best Wii Game
* Super Mario Galaxy 2 (Nintendo/Nintendo)
Donkey Kong Country Returns
(Nintendo/Retro Studios)
Kirby’s Epic Yarn (Nintendo/Good-Feel)
Metroid: Other M (Nintendo/Team Ninja/Nintendo)

Best PC Game
* StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty
(Blizzard Entertainment/Blizzard Entertainment)
Fallout: New Vegas
(Bethesda Softworks/Obsidian Entertainment)
Mass Effect 2 (Electronic Arts/BioWare)
Sid Meier’s Civilization V (2K Games/Firaxis)

Best Handheld Game
* God of War: Ghost of Sparta (Sony Computer Entertainment / Ready At Dawn Studios)
Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (Konami / Kojima Productions)
Professor Layton and the Unwound Future (Nintendo/ Level-5)
Super Scribblenauts (Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment / 5th Cell)

Best Shooter
* Call of Duty: Black Ops (Activision/Treyarch)
Battlefield: Bad Company 2
(Electronic Arts/DICE)
BioShock 2 (2K Games/2K Marin)
Halo: Reach (Microsoft/Bungie Studios)

Best Action Adventure Game
* Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood (Ubisoft/Ubisoft Montreal)
God of War III (Sony Computer Entertainment/SCE Studios Santa Monica)
Red Dead Redemption (Rockstar Games/Rockstar San Diego)
Super Mario Galaxy 2 (Nintendo/Nintendo)

Best RPG
* Mass Effect 2 (Electronic Arts/BioWare)
Fable III
(Microsoft/Lionhead Studios)
Fallout: New Vegas (Bethesda Softworks/Obsidian Entertainment)
Final Fantasy XIII (Square Enix/Square Enix)

Best Multiplayer Game
* Halo: Reach (Microsoft/Bungie Studios)
Battlefield: Bad Company 2
(Electronic Arts/DICE)
Call of Duty: Black Ops (Activision/Treyarch)
StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty (Blizzard Entertainment/Blizzard Entertainment)

Best Individual Sports Game
* Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 (Electronic Arts/EA Tiburon)
EA Sports MMA
(Electronic Arts/EA Tiburon)
Shaun White Skateboarding (Ubisoft/Ubisoft Montreal)
UFC Undisputed 2010 (THQ/Yuke’s Media Creations)

Best Team Sports Game
* NBA 2K11 (2K Sports/Visual Concepts)
FIFA Soccer 11
(Electronic Arts/EA Canada)
Madden NFL 11 (Electronic Arts/EA Tiburon)
MLB ’10: The Show (Sony Computer Entertainment/SCE Studios San Diego)

Best Driving Game
* Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit (Electronic Arts/Criterion Games)
Blur
(Activision/Bizarre Creations)
ModNation Racers (Sony Computer Entertainment/United Front Games)
Split/Second (Disney Interactive Studios/Black Rock Studio)

Best Music Game
* Rock Band 3 (MTV Games/Harmonix)
Dance Central
(MTV Games/Harmonix)
DJ Hero 2 (Activision Publishing/FreeStyleGames)
Def Jam Rapstar (Konami/Autumn Games / 4mm Games)

Best Soundtrack
* DJ Hero 2 (Activision/FreeStyleGames)
Def Jam Rapstar
(Konami/Autumn Games /4mm Games)
Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock (Activision/Neversoft Entertainment)
Rock Band 3 (MTV Games/Harmonix)

Best Song in a Game
* “Far Away” by José González (Red Dead Redemption)
“Basket Case” by Green Day (Green Day Rock Band)
“Black Rain” by Soundgarden (Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock)
“Goldeneye” by Nicole Scherzinger (GoldenEye 007)
“Replay/Rude Boy Mashup” by Iyaz & Rihanna (DJ Hero 2)
“Won’t Back Down” by Eminem (Call of Duty: Black Ops)

Best Original Score
* Red Dead Redemption (Rockstar Games/Rockstar San Diego)
God of War III
(Sony Computer Entertainment/SCE Studios Santa Monica)
Halo: Reach (Microsoft/Bungie Studios)
Mass Effect 2 (Electronic Arts/BioWare)

Best Graphics
* God of War III (Sony Computer Entertainment/SCE Studios Santa Monica)
Heavy Rain (Sony Computer Entertainment/Quantic Dream)
Kirby’s Epic Yarn (Nintendo/Good-Feel)
Red Dead Redemption (Rockstar Games/Rockstar San Diego)

Best Adapted Video Game
* Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game (Ubisoft/Ubisoft Montreal/Ubisoft Chengdu)
LEGO: Harry Potter: Years 1-4
(Warner Bros. Interactive/Traveller’s Tales)
Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions (Activision/Beenox)
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II (LucasArts/LucasArts)
Transformers: War for Cybertron (Activision/High Moon Studios)

Best Performance by a Human Male
* Neil Patrick Harris as Peter Parker/Amazing Spider-Man (Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions/Activision)
Daniel Craig as James Bond (James Bond 007: Blood Stone/Activision)
Gary Oldman as Sgt. Reznov (Call of Duty: Black Ops/Activision)
John Cleese as Jasper (Fable III/Microsoft)
Martin Sheen as Illusive Man (Mass Effect 2/Electronic Arts)
Nathan Fillion as Sergeant Edward Buck (Halo: Reach/Microsoft)
Rob Wiethoff as John Marston (Red Dead Redemption/Rockstar Games)
Sam Worthington as Alex Mason (Call of Duty: Black Ops/Activision)

Best Performance by a Human Female
* Tricia Helfer as Sarah Kerrigan (StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty/Blizzard Entertainment)
Dame Judi Dench as M (James Bond 007: Blood Stone/Activision)
Danica Patrick as Herself (Blur/Activision)
Emmanuelle Chriqui as The Numbers Lady (Call of Duty: Black Ops/Activision)
Felicia Day as Veronica (Fallout: New Vegas/Bethesda Softworks)
Jennifer Hale as Commander Sheppard (Mass Effect 2/Electronic Arts)
Kristen Bell as Lucy Stillman (Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood/Ubisoft)
Yvonne Strahovski as Miranda Lawson (Mass Effect 2/Electronic Arts)

Best Downloadable Game
* Costume Quest (THQ/Double Fine Productions)
Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light (Square Enix/Crystal Dynamics)
Monday Night Combat (Uber Entertainment/Uber Entertainment)
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game (Ubisoft/Ubisoft Montreal/ Ubisoft Chengdu)

Best DLC
* Red Dead Redemption – Undead Nightmare (Rockstar Games/Rockstar San Diego)
BioShock 2: Minerva’s Den
(2K Games/2K Marin)
Borderlands: The Secret Armory of General Knoxx (2K Games/Gearbox Software)
Mass Effect 2: Lair of the Shadow Broker (Electronic Arts/BioWare)

Best Independent Game
* Limbo (PlayDead)
Joe Danger
(Hello Games)
Super Meat Boy (Team Meat)
The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom (The Odd Gentleman)

Most Anticipated Game
* Portal 2 (Valve/Valve)
Batman: Arkham City
(Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment/Rocksteady Studios)
BioShock: Infinite (2K Games/Irrational Games)
Gears of War 3 (Microsoft/Epic Games)

3 Comments

Filed under Gaming

2010 in review

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads This blog is doing awesome!.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 3,100 times in 2010. That’s about 7 full 747s.

 

In 2010, there were 7 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 164 posts. There were 144 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 96mb. That’s about 3 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was May 9th with 72 views. The most popular post that day was Exam Answers Win.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were facebook.com, gordonator.com, akxd.blogspot.com, dannychoo.com, and en.wordpress.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for optimus prime costume, three kingdoms online units, three kingdoms online, exam fail, and fail exam answers.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Exam Answers Win November 2009

2

Three Kingdoms Online January 2010
1 comment

3

Chingay 2010 February 2010
3 comments

4

My Part-time Job over the June Holidays! May 2009
3 comments

 

“Thank you, stat helper monkeys! And thank you very much, WordPress.com!” -AK

1 Comment

Filed under Blog

A Visit to the Barber

And now, a bit of good literature to stretch and warm up my writing muscles, which are quite out of shape due to neglect.

You walk beneath the spiraling lamp and step through the glass door into a sleekly-designed shop of black and red-coloured furnishings. The lady at the counter with the thick makeup immediately acknowledges your presence and asks in Chinese if you want a simple haircut. You say yes, and she directs you to an empty barber’s chair.

You cross the tiled floor littered with bunches of hair strands and lower yourself onto the seat. Promptly an apron-clad woman appears behind you, razor at the ready.

You ask for a high-slope; she confirms your order by repeating it, using the Singapore Armed Forces term, and you understand that she knows exactly what you’re thinking.

You remove your glasses while the woman wraps a cape around your neck. You stare blankly at the reflection before you, lost in your thoughts as she deftly shaves off tufts of hair, using a comb and razor in tandem. Every now and then she would pause and touch her fingers against your scalp, subconsciously beckoning you to tilt your head to give her a better angle, before resuming.

5 minutes in and she retires the razor and takes up a pair of scissors to make fine adjustments.

You eventually become aware of tiny stubs of hair lodged uncomfortably in between your neck and the cape. Worse still, there are bits and strands of hair all over your cheeks and nose. Despite this you keep still and put up with the discomfort, patiently waiting for the barber to finish.

A few moments later and she appears to be done. She walks around you to reach for a hairdresser’s mirror and positions it for you to evaluate your new hairstyle. You squint against your near-sighted vision, usable to put on your glasses as your hands are kept beneath the cape. You’re unsure, but you tell her it’s alright. She puts away the mirror and uses a hair dryer to blow away the bits of hair on your face and neck, and removes the cape off you with a hairy flourish.

You pay the fee and go home. Your father notices your haircut and remarks that it is uneven. Spectacles on, you gaze into a mirror but don’t really see what he means. You shrug, and remind yourself that you only needed to pay $3.80 for it.

Thank you, Snip Avenue!

1 Comment

Filed under Random

Figma Products Number SP-012: Black Rock Shooter

I had been out of action from the photography scene for a very long time ever since my prosumer camera (which really doesn’t belong to me; it’s used by everybody in the family) broke down, so I was lucky to be able to borrow a friend’s point-and-shoot camera for the sole purpose of shelling out this post, which I really badly want to do to showcase just how awesome this Figma is. So sorry I can’t afford anything better at the moment like a DSLR; you’ll have to put up with a bunch of low-quality shots for now. Expect a bit of noise and a bit of graininess. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Anime, Figma, Figures, Lulz, Otaku, Photography