Friday Favorites: April 2019 Nintendo Switch Releases

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday everyone!

This year so far has been fantastic for games, especially those coming out to the Nintendo Switch. April itself has plenty of games to offer and, while my wallet itself isn’t thrilled, it’s great to see all these games coming out!

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy

This series is near and dear to our hearts, and we’re thrilled to be able to play the original three games again (for, like, the fifth or so time) on the Nintendo Switch! The music, characters, beautiful story arcs, and a hint of demon possession make these games quite addicting.

Nintendo Labo VR Kit

I’ll be honest, we still have yet to open the original Nintendo Labo. The boxes are still hanging out in our den. I am intrigued by the idea of the VR kits, however, especially with Breath of the Wild.

Cuphead

This is a game that Rachel and I were always interested in trying — despite being positive that we’d be horrendous at it — and we kept meaning to get the game on the Xbox, but we kept getting distracted by other games and life. Now that it’s on the Switch, one of our favorite consoles to date, we’ll actually give it a shot.

What are some of your favorite April 2019 game releases, for the Nintendo Switch or otherwise? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Monday Memories: Ace Up My Sleeve

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday everyone!

Technically, this memory is only about three years old. This post is a bit more personal and it took me a little too long to write and decide to share it. However, I believe it’s an important topic and it is certainly something that has shaped who I am today. 

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I am passionate about representation in media, obviously including video games. Gender, race, and especially sexuality need to be represented so they are normalized as much in media as they are in the real world.

The success of movies like Wonder Woman, Black Panther, and Captain Marvel testify to the need of representation. The same goes for the later Pokemon and Harvest Moon games that allow female and darker skinned avatars. One of Stardew Valley’s biggest selling points was that your avatar could marry any love interest despite their gender.

It was due to a video game that I realized my sexuality.

Three years ago, a visual novel dating sim featuring the popular YouTubers from the groups Normal Boots and Hidden Block was released. Considering that the two groups were some of our favorite content creators — and the ones who inspired us to talk and share more of our love of gaming — we were excited about the game, and really enjoyed its the writing, art, and music.

One of the characters in the game is gay. He states it after the female avatar asks him to go to a festival with her. Literally, he says, “You do know that I’m gay, right?” complete with the music cutting out with a record scratch sound effect. The character is a fan favorite and was prominent in the fandom through art and stories.

It was through this fandom that I found out about asexuality, the absence of feeling sexual attraction.

I was in my mid-twenties and had never heard of this sexuality. Throughout high school, I’ve had friends and acquaintances who had come out as lesbian or bisexual, and we were always supportive of each other. I had believed I was completely straight, but as I got older, I realized I wasn’t looking at men the same way my friends were. They had… interesting stories from their college campuses about being with another and I couldn’t for the life of me see what the appeal was. I had fallen for a couple of men throughout my lifetime, ones that were easy on the eyes and made me laugh, but I had no interest in any more physical acts.

Then Asagao Academy came out, I met some fellow fans online, specifically Tumblr, and the representation of a positive LGBT+ character helped so many teenagers and young adults, people who had grown up without seeing much of anything other than the “default” straight way to be. Including me.

One day, someone I followed mentioned that she believed she was asexual. I was surprised at how relieved I was from the epiphany I had that the word asexuality fit me. It was closure that I never knew I needed.

I am a heteromantic asexual.

Asexuality is still a fairly new concept — rather, new in the sense that it is being talked more about — but it has gained rapid support within the past couple of decades. Despite this, asexuals still get flak both from the LGBT+ community — for wishing to be “special” or, especially in a heteromantic ace’s case, “basically straight” — and straights who are not allies. We’re only about one percent of the population, and it wasn’t until 2013 that asexuality was excluded as a mental illness in the DSM.

I spend my time advocating for representation in media and by being available and open to those who may need the support of a friend. I’ve connected with a handful of others online, ones who have reached out because they took a chance from seeing my LBGT+ positivity posts. I’ve spoken to fellow aces, transgender people trying to figure themselves out, and those who merely needed a stranger to listen as they navigated through their own labels. Most, if not all, of them are teens, and I hope that I can help just a little.

Because, while my memories of going through puberty consist of feeling like I was missing a puzzle piece, we should be moving forward with representation. There is no default hero, and all media — video games included — should showcase that. Strides are being taken, but it will still be a while before we’re all on equal footing. No one should have to grow up without being represented as the hero.

(Besides, think of all the years I spent unable to make asexual puns. All of those times I could have told people that I have an ace up my sleeve… because it’s me. I am the ace.)

Are there any video games that caused you have a revelation about yourself? Anything in particular that you would like to collect? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Friday Favorites: Ace Attorney Characters Part Two

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday everyone!

The original Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney trilogy came out for the Nintendo Switch this week! Way back in October 2016, I did a Friday Favorites for favorite characters in the series, and this week I thought I would continue it, adding a few characters that have joined the franchise since then and other awesome mentions.

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Larry Butz

Larry is a dork. He gets caught in some unfortunate circumstances, but he’s endearing in that he is very loyal to his good friend Phoenix. He also just never gives up, no matter what life throws at him. He’s flighty but he does, somehow, improve throughout the games in the series.

Wendy Oldbag

This lady just amuses the hell out of me. Hearing her ramble against the “whippersnappers” of the game makes me laugh. And you got to give the old lady props for always having a job in security. She’s the kind of old lady I want to be when I grow up.

Dahlia Hawthorne

We were instantly suspicious of this woman when we first met her as she seemed too sweet, and we were horrified when proven correct. Still, she was a worthy — and batshit crazy — adversary for the games, and she is a villain that will always stick out in my mind for that.

Gregory Edgeworth

Okay, so he wasn’t a playable character, but Gregory Edgeworth as a background character heavily influenced Miles Edgeworth’s personality and development. I also enjoy the fact that Gregory seems to be a nod to Atticus Finch, the defense attorney from To Kill a Mockingbird whom was portrayed by the actor Gregory Peck.

Are you replaying (or playing for the first time) Ace Attorney on the Nintendo Switch? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Collecting Memorabilia

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday everyone!

During slow times at the day job, I’m often reading random news articles and this particular one about a gentleman and his extensive collection caught my eye.

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Everyone knows that being a geek is an expensive hobby, what with the video games, the art books, the comics, the soundtracks, among other types of merchandise to collect. Rachel and I have a decent collection, and have showed off a few results when it comes to our shopping sprees and gift hauls. Our only issue is the lack of space we have for all of our merchandise.

Then there’s this dude who has over $150k worth of X-Men memorabilia and a giant basement dedicated to everything. He holds the Guinness World Record for largest X-Men collection since 2012, and is on the page opposite of the late legend Stan Lee, whom he’s met. The pictures in the article look fantastic, and having the space to dedicate to such a large collection is part of Rachel’s and my plans when we save up enough to buy a house.

I have a sizable comic book collection and Rachel has tons of Pokemon cards, but neither of us could ever come up with a collection as extensive as the gentleman in the article (perhaps in a decade or so — his collection has been growing for the past 30 years). Being able to have a big enough collection to properly display is a good enough reason to splurge on merchandise, right?

What kind of geeky collection to you have? Anything in particular that you would like to collect? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Friday Favorites: Missed-Out Playstation 4 Games

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday everyone!

The Playstation family of consoles are the only consoles that Rachel and I really don’t have. We do have a Playstation 3, but I don’t remember if we have ever really turned it on before. Getting a Playstation 4 has always been in the back of our minds and, I’ll be honest, there are some Playstion 4 exclusive games that I’m disappointed to have missed out on.

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Marvel’s Spider-Man

I am woefully behind on the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but I’m still a fan of the comics, lore, and superheroes that make it up, including Spider-Man. I’ve heard how wonderful this game is, with the world, controls, and characters, and I’m sorry that I missed out on it.

Detroit: Become Human

Robotics, androids, and questioning what humanity actually is have always fascinated me. While I’m hesitant at the content rating of the game, the story itself sounds amazing and having multiple endings just makes it even better.

The Last Guardian

While it’s not exactly a giant puppy, the creature that the main character befriends in The Last Guardian is absolutely interesting to me, especially since part of the plot is the player training the creature rather than the player really being able to control the creature.

Are there games from a console you don’t have that you would be interesting in trying someday? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

Save the date! We’re doing a special Twitch Stream to celebrate the Nintendo Switch! You can learn more about it here.

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New Game Radar: Gollum

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday everyone!

I can’t believe it’s the first of April already! The year is already going by so fast… I can barely keep up with the games that are coming out this year, and here I am writing a post about a game that may not be slated until 2021.

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Lord of the Rings is a universally acclaimed franchise that many geeks enjoy together. Even if you are not that big of a fan of J.R.R. Tolkien’s world, you probably understand the phrases, “Not all who wander are lost” and “You shall not pass!”

The original movie trilogy was a blockbuster, Amazon has green-lit a television series, and there are still books coming out with Tolkien’s works and worlds. Video games have been created to help fans immerse themselves even further in Middle-Earth, from Lord of the Rings Online to Shadows of Mordor. Now there is a new game in the works starring the creature that coined the term, “My Precious.”

Although this is early in development, considering the company says we can expect the game in 2021, the idea of a video game starring Gollum is intriguing. He’s a wretched little creature whose mind is ensnared by the One Ring, so it’ll be interesting to see where this game will take him. Will it start with finding the ring? Will he already be the Gollum creature that we know at the beginning of the game, with the voices developing inside his head?

In the books and movies, his ending is not happy. Will the game allow us to change his fate? Would fans want the game to do that?

Are you interested in Lord of the Rings and, by extension, a game centered around Gollum? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

Save the date! We’re doing a special Twitch Stream to celebrate the Nintendo Switch! You can learn more about it here.

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Flashback Friday: Sonic Battle

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday, everyone!

Hey, guys, with the end of March, 2019 is a quarter of the way over. Isn’t that kind of scary to think about? 

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Sonic the Hedgehog has an interesting reputation. The majority of people believe his earlier games are the best examples of the speedy hedgehog, but his later games seemed to do well enough for them to keep on coming. I was always a fan of the character, even if his games weren’t the best quality, and one of my favorite games that featured Sonic was Sonic Battle for the Gameboy Advance. Considering Sonic is known for his super speed, a fighting game starring the character was a bit unorthodox, but I found it fun.

Sonic Battle was released in Japan at the end of 2003 and North America and Europe at the beginning of 2004. It got mostly mixed reviews, with most of its fighting and arena aspects being praised but its story and some mechanics being criticized. The battles themselves were fought in 3D stages, each with their own design, while the characters themselves were 2D, reminding me briefly of the graphics in the Paper Mario series.

There were a plethora of characters, each with their own standard attacks and combos, as well as heavy attacks, air attacks, upper attacks, and aim attacks. Sonic’s attacks relied mostly on speed, Shadow had the use of Chaos Control in his combos, Knuckles was one of the heavier hitters, etc. One character, Emerl, is the most unique in the game. As an ancient Gizoid, Emerl has the ability to copy attacks from the other characters after engaging them in a fight. These attacks are represented as cards and the player can build a custom move-set for Emerl to use throughout the story. It gave the game some replayability, even with the linear storyline.

Still, it was fun. It had the characters I cared about in a light that wasn’t seen too often. Sonic Battle is one of the few Gameboy Advance games that, even to this day, I would play casually when given the chance.

Have you played Sonic Battle? What did you think of it?

Save the date! We’re doing a special Twitch Stream to celebrate the Nintendo Switch! You can learn more about it here.

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