Supreme Verdict: Tokyo Ravens

We’re back in another episode of Supreme Verdict wherein I share my general impression and thoughts about an anime that I just finished watching. There has been a couple of anime titles that has recently ended and a few more that will end in the weeks to come so I am taking this opportunity to discuss some of the titles that I’ve watched upon their conclusion.

Warning: This article contains spoilers so read at your own leisure!

One such anime that I’ve been following would be Tokyo Ravens. For those who’re not aware of the premise of the anime, it’s basically about a guy named Tsuchimikado, Harutora and his cousin Tsuchimikado, Natsume, childhood friends who both enrolled in an Omnyo Prep School located in Tokyo. After a spiritual disaster that took place in their hometown, Harutora decided to become Natsume’s spirit familiar who swore to protect her as long as he lives.

As the course of the story goes, the main protagonist along with their newfound friends eventually encounter the Twin Horn Syndicate who’s bent on kidnapping Natsume for they believe that she is the reincarnation of Tsuchimikado Yakou, the so-called King of the North Star and the most powerful Omnyo exorcist to have ever lived and who they believe would lead them to a new era.

Supreme Verdict: Tokyo Ravens

“I said “King” NOT “Fist”!”

Now that we’ve established the setting of the story, let’s go down to business. I am actually disappointed at the last episode of Tokyo Ravens.

Supreme Verdict: Tokyo Ravens

VSAT = Viewer Satisfaction Chart

The thing is that the episode seems rushed in a sense that Natsume’s resurrection wasn’t even dramatic as well as the events that soon followed. I do find the part where Ohtomo Jin asked Ashiya Doman to be his familiar very interesting. The battles were not that climactic in a sense that there wasn’t even a scene where the awakened Yakou showed what he can do even if it was momentarily.

Supreme Verdict: Tokyo Ravens

I understand that Reiji and his familiar Shaver had to retreat being aware that they cannot defeat Harutora in his current state the same with Takiko Souma keeping her familiar Yashamaru/Shido Dairenji from clashing with Hishamaru, Yakou’s familiar. But damn, the episode would’ve been better if there was a part where Yakou displays his true power against the antagonists. Sadly, there was none.

Truth is that I’ve always been a fan of anime series wherein the beaten up protagonist would awaken into a different and powerful character that’d really kick the ass of their antagonist easily. Similar to what happened here:

 

This will always be one of the most epic fight scenes that I’ve seen in anime history. Yes, Tokyo Ravens is not a battle anime like Dragonball, YuYu Hakusho and or One Piece but having such a scene would make it more memorable.

Also, the anime ended leaving me with a lot of questions like how did the Taizan Fukun ritual actually go that Harutora/Yakou had to leave Natsume? In addition, why leave Natsume alone in the middle of nowhere, and alone for that matter? And without even letting anyone know where she is staying? Did they just have a “hi-ma’am-bam-thank-you-ma’am!” scene over there?

Supreme Verdict: Tokyo Ravens

Unfortunately, these are just a few of the questions that we’ll never be able to answer unless of course you start reading the manga or light novel which I am sure is one of the primary reasons why the last episode ended like that. At the end of the day, producing anime is a marketing strategy to sell the manga or the light novels after all.

Anime industry be like “Want more answers? Then give us yer monneeehhh” Yeah, painful truth indeed. However, I had to admit that the part where Kon undid the seals to revert back to her original form was cool, the same as when Kakugyouki arrived to assist her in a timely manner.

Supreme Verdict: Tokyo Ravens

“Kon’s true and final form”

My satisfaction overall for the series tends to fluctuate depending on what’s the arc or chapter’s focus but it didn’t dip in any way with the last episode being the only exception. I’d still recommend the series to those who are looking for anime of the supernatural genre with a bit of romance schtick involved. And if there’s something that the anime has it going in it, it’s the plot twist that I must say is really something I found remarkably surprising.

Supreme Verdict: Tokyo Ravens

“LRT Taft Station. Yep, they’re now in the Philippines”

I still enjoyed the whole series but the ending was just a let-down. Then again, if a second season pops up then good otherwise, I’d probably end up reading the manga or light novel instead.

Thanks for reading,

@ravenknives at Twitter

Raven Knives

imagecredits:

animevice.com
otakustreamers.com

 

Supreme Verdict: Tokyo Ravens

“Did you think that this article would end without having an image of Suzuka Dairenji?”

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

It took me a while before I was able to get around into completely watching the first episode of this anime. I attempted to watch the first episode a month ago or so if I remember correctly but thanks to me being fickle-minded, I was unable to finish the first episode (though the truth was that the internet connection at that time was really slow and I was having trouble getting it completely loaded).

Never the less, I took the opportunity to watch it today since it’s been a while since I last watched a new anime title. In addition, I was trying to get myself back into the habit of writing my first impressions of different anime titles that I watch in otakustreamers. I’ve been mostly preoccupied the last few days that I wasn’t able to find the time or the motivation to write my reviews.

Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda which translates to World Conquest: Strategem Star (trivia: Zvezda is Russian for “Star”, as in the celestial body) was written by Tensai Okamura and Meteor Hoshizora of the Japanese game company TYPE MOON(The same people who brought you Fate Stay/Night and Fate Zero).

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

The premise of the story starts with a second year middle school student Asuta Jimon getting involved with a young girl named Kate Hoshimiya (or sometimes called Lady Venera by her subordinates)who seems to have special powers manifested through her rabbit-like stuff toy.

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

“THAT stuff toy”

What makes it more interesting is the fact that she’s assisted by five unique individuals in her ambition to conquer the world.

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

“Unique Individuals alright”

As of the first and second episode, I am totally not sure if she’s an extra-terrestrial being or what but as far as I know is that Kate, the leader of the group is determined to conquer the world and each of her subordinates have their own special abilities or talents, except for Odin who seems to be another normal human being. I’ve yet to find out as I continue to watch the series.

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

“God and her champion. Seems legit.”

The anime is actually reminiscent of Haruhi Suzumiya in a sense that the premise puts the main protagonist amidst characters that are out of this world. Furthermore, Kate reminds me of Haruhi in a sense that both are young girls who seemed determined to change the world in their own fancy way. Also, both stories seems to be told in the perspective of the protagonist who’s just a normal human being while at the same time being thrown into something they are totally clueless about.

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

“SOS Brigade”

I don’t really have much to say about the artwork but I do like the design of the monsters in the first and second episode and yet to find out why the kurukuru(the cute little spuds in the series who make cute weird sounds with each having their own designated numbers) tend to become one big kaiju. The show also has a running gag about the characters that the main protagonist meets who tend to pronounce his name wrong. I also like the humor presented in the first two episodes.

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

“No, they’re not some kind of skittles”

I also appreciate the greetings that Kate and her subordinates have towards each other and find their arch nemesis’ appearance similar to the costumes of the main protagonists of another anime entitled Kagaku Ninja Tai Gatchaman or Science Ninja Team Gatchaman(also known in the US as G-Force).

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

I am even thinking that the order of the White Light is a reference to the former since its members have birds as their code names. And maybe Zvezda represents Galactor perhaps? =p Another thing I noticed is if the main protagonist’s name is a reference to Mobile Suit Gundam Zeta’s main protagonist Judau Ashta. Honestly, the two names just sound alike.

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

Overall, I find Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda amusing and a good watch especially if you want some light humor as well as an interesting plot. As of right now, it’s still one of those on-going anime and I don’t have any idea yet as to how many episodes will this anime have. However, I won’t be surprised if this anime would only have 12 to 14 episodes. For the meantime….

First Impressions: Sekai Seifuku: Bouryaku no Zvezda

Thanks for reading,

Raven Knives

@ravenknives at Twitter

Imagecredit:

www.animexmusic.net
enci-subs.blogspot.comy
rabujoi.wordpress.com
www.animindo.net
www.watchcartoononline.com
haruhi.wikia.com
ramige.deviantart.com
helenmccarthy.wordpress.com
www.otakustreamers.com

Raven’s Verse I

As the star fell from the grace of heavens
The land below trembled and despaired
As it touched the barren wastelands
It gave birth to the sins of man

Close thine eyes god of this world
Let mankind drown in blood and sorrow
Until the world bleeds dry
Then only will you open your eyes
to beautify the world anew

What Is The Use Of Guitar Hangers?

Most guitar owners get their own guitar hanger for a variety of reasons such as:

  • Protection: As a guitar owner, it is your responsibility to protect your guitar from your pets and from children wandering around that would inadvertently touch your guitar and or anything that may possibly dent it or smear it. Having a guitar hanger makes sure that the chances of your guitar experiencing this is decreased.
  • Accessibility: It is more practical and easier for a guitarist to have his guitar hanged on a guitar hanger than getting it out of the guitar case. Having your guitar hanged on the wall with a guitar grip torch tip from guitar center is more convenient than opening the case and then taking out the guitar then closing the case only to open it again when you will be returning your guitar in it then closing it again.
  • Space: The good thing about it is that you can utilize the walls as added space especially if your place is not big enough and or you have lots of instruments. At the same time, you have easy access to each of them and are displayed for your friends to see and admire.

The advantage that a guitar hanger offers should not be taken for granted especially if you want to make your life easier.

Advice In Learning Keyboard Notes

Though there are some people who can play keyboards and MIDIs by ear, it is still vital to be able to learn how to read keyboard notes. The first few things that you need to learn when it comes to reading keyboard notes are:

  • Find The C Note: The first thing that you have to do is locate the “C” note from the keyboard. Try to find an image or diagram in books or online on where to find it. Remember that this is the first note of the “C” Major scale which starts with “C, D, E, F, G, A, B and then C again”.
  • Take Note Of The Black Keys: Take note that each black key on the keyboard may represent either a C sharp, a D flat or this depends on what key you are playing or chord you are currently toggling with. In order for you to identify the note a particular black key is representing, you go  either with the white key before it which signifies a sharp sign and or the white key after it which represents a flat sign.
  • Find the Octave: Finding the middle C and you can do this by decreasing or increasing the octave number on native instruments keyboard.

These are the first few things that you have to learn if you are interested in playing a keyboard and MIDI.

Advantage of Transitioning From Print Catalogs To Online Catalogs

Times have changed and a lot of people find it convenient to shop online and because of this, it might be the best opportunity to transition from print catalogs to online catalogs. So what advantage does moving away from print catalogs offer?

  • Added Sales Channel: One of the advantages of having online catalogs is that it serves as another means to able to sell your products and services. Since most people are online, the chances of them stumbling at your products and services through your online catalog are higher.
  • Lessens Printing Costs: Another reason to do away with the print catalogs and switch to online catalogs is that it is cost-efficient. You no longer need to spend for distribution as well as for printing materials which saves you money as compared to continuously printing catalogs.
  • Flexibility: What makes online catalogs great is that if you need to update information or products and or correct errors then you can easily and conveniently make those changes without having to go reprint the affected catalogs. And in case you need to print catalogs online, you can easily do so without much trouble.

Take these advantages into account if you are deciding on having online catalogs.

Modern Price Trends and Observations as of March 5th, 2014

It’s just a couple of days before the most anticipated event takes place this weekend which is Grand Prix Richmond and it’s highly likely that it would be a grand event. With almost 3000 players already registered as of March 4th, Starcitygames.com have decided to put an attendance cap to it of up to 5000 players max to ensure that everyone will be accommodated properly.

This aside, I’ve been monitoring the prices of some note-worthy cards for the past few days and I’d like to take the opportunity to share my findings with you in this article as well as my observations in the modern format.

Modern Price Trends and Observations as of March 5th, 2014

Modern Price Trends and Observations as of March 5th, 2014

Modern Price Trends and Observations as of March 5th, 2014

Modern Price Trends and Observations as of March 5th, 2014

There’s really nothing much to say about the Faerie pieces since no upward movement took place in the last week since Pro Tour Born of the Gods Valencia, especially that no copies of Bitterblossom made it in the top 8. Though, three players made it day two as what I mentioned in my previous article, it’s not enough to get Faerie pieces to spike as compared to the cards used by those who top 8ed the event.

Sadly, majority of the pros believe that Faeries just doesn’t have what it takes to be a dominant deck in the modern format. Also, most MTGO events only have at least one player using Faeries as a deck and nothing more as compared to the other archetypes. Based from this data, it’s very unlikely for the archetype to rebound this coming GP. On the other hand, the past MTGO events seem to be cluttered with Scapeshift, Pod, Twin variants, UR Storm and Robots with the occasional Jund variants.

This means that it would be the best time to sell your bitterblossoms. Unless you’re not going to use the green titan, might as well sell your copies though if Scapeshift decks make it to the top 8 of GP Richmond, not to mention a number of copies of Primeval Titan, it’s very likely that its price will spike big time. Then again, this is already obvious and is basically how things work in the M:tG economy.

Also, I found an interesting Faeries list that did NOT have any copies of the tribal enchantment and it looks sweet. The list seems built to deal with Faeries’ usual weak matchup which would be the aggressive decks.

Modern Price Trends and Observations as of February 5th, 2014

How about Zoo? Well, I didn’t really see much of it. With most decks having Anger of the Gods as tech and a lot of spot removals that efficiently deal with most of the creatures that Zoo decks have, it’s become challenging for the deck to keep up. Not to mention that a lot of the decks are good when it comes to dealing with gorillas, goyfs and lions and then suddenly combo-ing off a few turns later to seal the win.

Modern Price Trends and Observations as of March 5th, 2014

So, did Zoo suddenly become a bad deck choice? Of course not but with the resurgence of URW variants and other combo decks, it just became difficult to consistently kill opponents fast enough especially when their decks are built to kill most of the critters that you will be putting on the board. At the same time, with Jund or other similar decks being underrepresented, combo decks are not threatened by hand disruption unlike before hence they are more likely to pull up what they want to do every game.

As an added note, there’s also no Zoo deck that got in the top 8 in Mindstorm Games hobby shop, a local gaming center. For reference, here are the decks that top 8ed in the recent Tuesday event:

1st Place – Pao L. Robots/Affinity 4-1

2nd Place – Menard Q – Kiki Pod -4-1

3rd Place – Adan M – WU Control -3-1-1

4th Place – Ben C – Monogreen Devotion – 3-1-1

5th Place – Roberto G – RG Tron – 3-2

6th Place – Sunny A – UR Twin – 3-2

7th Place – Peter S – Merfolk 3-2

8th Place – Donovan B – Firemind Control 3-2

If there’s one archetype that I do find consistent though in this local gaming center, it’s the URW/UR decks as well as the pod decks.

Overall, the recent bannings/unbannings cause a series of changes in the modern format which used to be dominated by Jund decks. Combo decks seems to have been suppressed back then but with very few decks playing Thoughtseize and Inquisition as well as Liliana of the Veil, it’s very likely that combo decks will remain to be strong contenders in the modern format. Aggressive decks are still viable deck choices but now that most are utilizing Anger of the Gods, and other efficient mass and spot removals, they’ll probably have a hard time racing their opponents.

I guess that wraps up today’s article. It’s only a matter of time before the modern format shapes up and I’d be watching it closely. How about you? Any insights in how the modern format will shape up in the next few days to come?

Thanks for reading!

@ravenknives at Twitter

Raven Knives

imagecredit:

www.starcitygames.com
gatherer.wizards.com
www.wizards.com/magic