Saturday, 31 August 2019

TV Shows #21 - Part 1

Killing Eve Season One (2018)
Developed/Written By: Phoebe Waller-Bridge
Starring: Sandra Oh, Jodie Comer, Fiona Shaw, Darren Boyd, Owen McDonnell, Kirby Howell-Baptiste, Sean Delaney, David Haig, Kim Bodnia, Susan Lynch

Certificate: 15 Running Time: 41-55 Minutes per Episode, 8 Episodes

With the exception of a handful of fondly-recalled classics I grew up with, I've never really been into British TV shows for some reason. For those who don't know me, this is slightly weird as I'm British. I suppose at least part of it is down to the main reason I watch films/shows - escapism. British shows, as good as some of them may be, often just remind me of the kind of stuff I'm trying to 'escape' from, so I usually steer clear just in case. On a different-though-related note, my wife has long been a fan of actress Sandra Oh, whose character she liked in Grey's Anatomy before she eventually got bored of the ultra-long-running show. Since a new show centred around Ms. Oh was nearing release, though, my better half was duly keen on watching it and invited me to join her. Upon doing so, however, I was mildly alarmed to find that it was a British show in which Ms. Oh was seemingly the 'token American' (or Canadian, as the case may be), but I had little choice but to try it anyway.

Thursday, 29 August 2019

First Look Xbox #2

Burnout Revenge by Criterion Games / Electronic Arts (2005) - Xbox

From the moment I played Burnout I loved it. It's exactly the kind of racing game I like. Happily for me, the sequel was even better. Both games contain among the fastest, most precise, and most intense racing action I've experienced in an arcade racer and I spent many hours going through all the races and competitions and attempting to better my times. Then the foul EA bought Criterion and, typically, they ruined just about everything I loved about the games. I played Takedown for about ten minutes and that was enough to know I didn't like it, so when I saw Revenge for a mere £2 a while back, even at that price I wasn't sure. I got it anyway in the end, to review here if nothing else, but I didn't expect to like it any more than Takedown. Expecting to dislike a game going in isn't the best idea I suppose but everything I had seen indicated a continuation of EA's nonsense, and indeed, when I finally got it going, an intense frown immediately developed as I realised I had been correct all along.

Thursday, 22 August 2019

Game Gallery #7

Thunder Force 3 by Techno Soft (1990) - MegaDrive

It has been a looong time since I did one of these, which is a bit strange considering how many screenshots I usually grab when playing games for reviews. I might as well put some of them to use, surely? Yes I should, and so it shall be once more. To that end, bewildering absence notwithstanding, the Game Gallery is now back! Since the last one was for Thunder Force 2, for this return I thought it's immediate sequel and 'Finest MD Shmup' title-holder, Thunder Force III was a logical choice.

Click here for the full review of this fine game.

Special Note: As many of you will know, players can choose between the game's first five stages from the start. This gallery, however, will feature them in the 'correct' order, thus:

Title and 'Secret' Config Screens:

Wednesday, 14 August 2019

Dizzy Series - Part 6

Kiwk Snax (1990)
By: Oliver Twins / Code Masters Genre: Maze Players: 1 Difficulty: Medium
Featured Version: ZX Spectrum First Day Score: 9,262
Also Available For: Amiga, Atari ST, PC, Commodore 64, Amstrad CPC

Another Dizzy game, another great loading screen...
My good friend Luke and I used to regularly enjoy playing Fast Food all those many moons ago, despite its simple and repetitive nature. Maybe that was its appeal in those days, but little did I (we?) know that it actually got a sequel a few years later too, in the form of the slightly-annoyingly-named Kwik Snax. It's not one of those pesky 'data disc' sequels either - the basic mazey game style is similar but there are definitely a lots of differences between the two. I don't think Fast Food even had a backstory really, but Kwik Snax is apparently set in the 'Land of Personality' where Dizzy and the Yolkfolk are finishing their tour of Yolkland. Unfortunately they had an argument which woke Zaks the evil wizard, and his resultant spells sent all but Dizzy to the furthest reaches of the world! Luckily, this leaves Dizzy free to rescue their sorry arses and bitchslap Zaks while he's at it. If he feels like it.

Wednesday, 7 August 2019

Manga - A Beginner's Look #2

Do You Like Big Girls? (2014-Present)
Original Title: Ookii Onnanoko wa Suki desu ka?
By: Aizome, Goro (Story & Art)
Chapters: 39 (so far) Total Pages: 14-20 per chapter

Genres: Ecchi, Romance, School, Sports, Harem, Seinen

I guess it's probably not too hard to see why this particular manga caught my eye, but upon further investigation I found that the 'big girls' of the title does not refer to their chest regions but to their statures generally. The main character, Tachibana Souta, is a fairly normal schoolboy except he's a bit on the short side. This is something he finds mighty irksome, especially in light of the fact that his 'big' sister, Kaoru, is a tremendously lofty six-and-a-half foot! Putting this considerable height to her advantage, she is one of six members of her college's volleyball team. Unfortunately, their manager is in hospital long-term, recuperating from an illness, so who do they rope into becoming their stand-in manager? Yes that's right - Souta! Of course, what they call 'manager' ends up meaning 'lackey', but it's not all bad as he also finds himself surrounded by his sister's equally lofty, and not-aethetically-unpleasant teammates, all of whom, in a stunningly unexpected plot-twist, find Souta completely irresistable!

Monday, 5 August 2019

PS4 Purchases #6

Axiom Verge by Thomas Happ Games (2015)

It's slightly startling to think about how long ago this was released as it still almost seems like a current release in my (peculiar) mind, but it has nonetheless been on my wanted list the whole time - first on Steam, then the physical PS4 version on Amazon which is of course the one I finally bought this past week. I was going to get the standard version which was available for the bargain sum of ten sheets. It is, however, bereft of any bells and whistles as you might well expect, unlike the fancy 'Multiverse Edition' which I thought cost significantly more. But soon after receiving my purchase, I found that the lovelier special edition was only fifteen nicker, so of course I swiftly returned the normal version and ordered the special one instead which, as you can see, also arrived promptly!