Kategoriarkiv: International

Lego Captain Marvel and the Skrull Attack (76127)

Right after watching Captain Marvel I went out and bought this set, but having my photo booth covered in Lego prevented me from giving this a review until now. So what do we have here?

Making superhero Lego sets is usually an exercise in pointlessness. With few exceptions, the heroes are what matters and any vehicle is usually just a way to get around the license issues, since Lego don’t normally own the ”action figure” rights. Some are actually relevant, like the Quinjets, the Milano and the Benatar, but usually we get a little generic piece of building or something. This set gives us yet another Quinjet, and one of the smaller ones at that. At the same time we have a bigger one from Avengers: Endgame, but this uses a more toned down design mostly in grey with red accents. ... Läs hela texten

Lego Hagrid’s Hut: Buckbeak’s Rescue (75947)

The new Harry Potter sets released slightly ahead of schedule, so I picked up this one without waiting for a better deal. For some reason, probably because it’s the best movie, the recent sets have heavily focused on The Prisoner of Azkaban, with the previous train set, this and a smaller Expecto Patronum set all covering events from there. Which is fine with me, since we’re getting new editions of several important characters.

Hagrid’s hut is a fairly compact but very detailed set, which uses some clever designs to achieve the rounded look. It reminds me a bit of Luke’s hut from the Ahch-To set, but it’s better overall. The two parts of the house can be taken apart, and inside is plenty of space for (fairly cramped) play if you want all the characters in there. There’s an unnecessary but nice feature with the fireplace lighting up if you press on the roof. Some of the random items inside include a whip, a cleaver, a spoon and, for some reason, Umbridge’s umbrella, which is a nasty little tease considering the figure herself is an exclusive from the Bricktober sets. Outside there’s a small patch of pumpkins with a pole to tie Buckbeak to. These pumpkins are new for 2019 and useful parts, and we get four in this set. ... Läs hela texten

Benny’s Space Squad (70841)

The appearance of the ”80’s-something-spaceguy” Benny in The Lego Movie was a genius move to appeal to older Lego fans. It’s not even just Adult Fans of Lego since you’d need to be 35-40 years old to really appreciate the classic design of Lego’s first space theme. So we got Benny and the awesome nostalgia bomb of his spaceship and that was generally it. In the years since Lego has teased old fans occasionally like having a green Futuron guy in a City set and printing a part specifically to allow building a gray classic spaceman from other spare parts. But now in time for The Lego Movie 2 they’ve released another major nostalgia set: Benny’s Space Squad. ... Läs hela texten

Sarah Alainn #6: Timeless

A year after Cinema Music (and the short LP album Eternalist) Sarah Alainn returns with a ”best of” collection rather than a brand new album. This is a little disappointing and I had considered simply skipping it since I already own all of her albums, but it turned out to include a selection of brand new tracks so I had to get it. Curse my weakness!

It is a very good collection though. It’s missing a couple of my favourites like ”Turns to Light”, ”New World”, ”Angel” and ”Nandemonaiya”, but almost all of the selected tracks are among the best. We have the great ”To Love You More”, the amazing ”Little Doll”, the uplifting Yasunori Mitsuda track ”Dream As One”, Sarah’s own equally uplifting ”Sky’s Calling”, the quirky ”Shadows of Time” and ”Venetian Glass”, classics like ”On My Own” and ”Time To Say Goodbye”, and of course ”Beyond the Sky”, the Xenoblade track that started her career. While I would still recommend buying her entire discography (except possibly the first, Celeste), this is a good place to start. ... Läs hela texten

21 years of Soul: Soul Calibur V

Finally, we have the fifth installment. It was revealed through a series of puzzles on the official site, eventually showing off a big change in direction. Mitsurugi and Siegfried appeared in older, slightly greyed versions, and it was soon established that the game took place after a Tekken 3-like time gap. Sophitia was gone for good, replaced by her kids Patroklos and Pyrrha. Since women over 35 can’t exist in a fighting game most of the originals like Xianghua and Taki were removed and replaced by successors, but Hilde barely made it by virtue of being young enough in the previous game. For Ivy and Tira, Namco mainly shrugged and didn’t age them. And the generational thing didn’t really go anywhere. Besides Mitsurugi and Siegfried, the rest didn’t age either. And replacing most of the original cast once more (see I and II) didn’t go down well. Leixia, Natsu and Xiba were derided as silly, childish versions of Xianghua, Taki and Kilik, and replacing the Alexandra sisters with two angsty kids really wasn’t appreciated. ... Läs hela texten

21 years of Soul: Soul Calibur IV

It’s funny, but I can’t remember any particulars about the release of Soul Calibur IV. The first images turned up in the summer of 2007 and being the first game to release on Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 it was beautiful to look at. A huge surprise was the fact that both versions would yet again get exclusive characters, this time around none other than Darth Vader and Yoda, with the new character Apprentice being in both versions to promote Star Wars: The Force Unleashed. As time went on, the game also introduced a bunch of guest characters designed by mangakas, but unlike the creation fighters in III there was very little cohesion and they were all female with varying levels of absurd designs. Scheherazade was an elf, Angol Fear was an anime fighter in an otherwise realistic-ish game, Shura was a generic badass and Kamikirimusi was a weird demon. The only one who felt like she could have been a proper Soul Calibur character was Ashlotte, a gothic robotic clockwork maiden. ... Läs hela texten

21 years of Soul: Soul Calibur III

Only two years after part II, it was time again. In early 2005, images appeared, once again with Mitsurugi and Taki as the leads, but also showing off three new characters: Zasalamel, Setsuka and Tira. This time the game was Playstation 2 exclusive, probably since the console had smashed most of its opposition. It lead to a lot of resentment however, and Soul Calibur III remains a very divisive game. I loved it though. For once I kind of enjoyed the new characters, mostly because they didn’t replace anyone. In fact, everyone was back! That Siegfried was once again his own character and even the main protagonist didn’t hurt either. ... Läs hela texten

21 years of Soul: Soul Calibur II

It actually took a while for the next Soul Calibur. Dreamcast died off and Xbox and Gamecube replaced it, while Playstation 2 built an early lead. In september of 2001, the first images appeared, with Mitsurugi, Taki, Astaroth (with weird horns that were eventually removed) and Ivy returning but Sophitia replaced with Cassandra. Yes, yet again there was a change of cast. We also lost Siegfried, Hwang, Lizardman, Cervantes, Rock and Mi-Na, with a couple of newcomers taking their place. Yet again I didn’t really appreciate Yun-Seong, Talim or Raphael. The arcade version was released but I wasn’t too hyped, and it was a weird game in many ways. When it was time for console versions in 2003, Namco made deals for unique editions for everyone. This started a tradition of guest characters that mostly have made the games worse and distracted from the original cast. Link did end up selling a ton of copies for Gamecube, but I never liked his gameplay. Heihachi was a neat addition, but Spawn was and is a horrible design and a boring character with a short, stubby axe. ... Läs hela texten

21 years of Soul: Soul Calibur

After getting in fairly late with Soul Blade, it only took a year to start hearing rumblings of a sequel. In the middle of 1998, the first previews of the arcade version of Soul Calibur turned up. Soon the game was released and it had a very exciting component with ”Time Release Characters”. Week after week, new characters popped up, and the initial cast basically doubled. It was amazing to follow, but also frustrating, as arcades were extremely rare in my area. So I couldn’t do anything except download every shred of info I could find and wait for the Playstation port. Which, obviously, never turned up. Namco betrayed Sony to release Soul Calibur on Dreamcast, and after a lot of frustrated anger, I resigned to buying myself one. I was planning to actually import a Japanese console, but as it turned out, it would only take a few months to get a European release so I waited impatiently. The local game shop had a bunch of import games and they did bring in the Japanese version early. I still remember standing in the middle of the shop, trying out Siegfried and Mi-Na and fighting up to Inferno. ... Läs hela texten

21 years of Soul: Soul Blade

soulblade

In the week leading up to Soul Calibur VI, let’s look back at the series and the trials and tribulations I went through to play my favourite fighting game series.

Contrary to what the King of Fighters ’98 intro claims, it all began in ’97. I had been thriving on a diet of creative PC games for a few years, but I wanted a new console. There had been early reports on Street Fighter III and I absolutely needed it, but no home version was forthcoming. I was actually saving up for a Matsushita M2 for a while when it seemed that it might get the game. Anyway, I stumbled across an issue of CVG with a huge feature on the game. The next issue had a review and I knew that I had to have this game. I made a deal to get my summer job paid early and bought myself a Playstation and a brand new copy of Soul Blade. ... Läs hela texten