The Convention Quadrant: Omni Fandom Expo Year 6!

Hello to all of my beautiful nerds and welcome back to Nerdy Shique Universe from traveling the vast universe! Sorry for taking so long for doing this!

Convention Impossible: Omni Fandom Expo 2019!

I was ill during the end of March with a Bronchial Spasm, how it happened was that after Omni I was feeling a bit exhausted since I was going to bed around midnight during the convention and had to wake up early for work afterwards and by Thursday of that week that was when I got sick. I could not breathe that evening after work and Sunday night so Gondras took me to the Urgent Care twice and that was when I found out I had borderline Bronchitis. I am healing still, I even did a video Tuesday unboxing the new Jeffree Starr pallet which you get to see me use on YouTube this weekend.

So, since Omni passed and all I have to say is that I had a blast this year and let’s get to it!

Hotel: First was a first for us at the convention and that is staying at the Florida Hotel. As you guys know that this is the hotel that is attached to the Florida Mall in Orlando and a lot of tourists from all over stay at this place every year throughout the year. It is a huge tourist trap. I can see why this is a popular place because not only the hospitality is the best but the rooms are amazing! For the convention discount you get a pretty big room and we got a room with two queen size beds, a couch, and an easy chair. We also got a pretty good sized fridge and bathroom. Plus, our room did have a nice view of M & M World which is also an awesome place.

The convention was pretty much the same layout except Panel Room 1 was changed up where it was slightly smaller this year but I did get to the room very easily since I got to explore the night events on my own instead of waiting for Nerdy Shirts and Gondras to take me down to it. I do love how the hotel hallways are very shoreline friendly with my cane. And in case if anyone is wondering, no worries my cane survived this convention without incident. Since I mentioned events…

Events: This year it was mostly going to evening events since our day was packed with the Press Booth and of course we had interviews on Sunday during the convention. I did go to Derek Steven Prince’s panel Shino & Friends since I didn’t get to check it out last year along with Nobu’s and Sawa’s Q & A Panel since they were both guests and did perform during the convention, which we did catch some of that on Saturday and they know how to work with each other. Didn’t know Nobu was a metal fan either since he was starting to sing “Welcome to the Jungle” by Guns & Roses or I give him props for good taste.

We did check out one of the big shows and that was the Marvel Parody Show. One thing I will admit is that I am a fan of musicals and my z musicals are still Rent, Grease, the one with Travolta and Newton-John, and Repo the Genetic Opera. This was one of those Broadway looking musicals with a contemporary feel with the Marvel Heroes and Villains! It was amazing and entertaining! The only issue I had was Ant Man because he had the song dealing with “All the Small Things” by Blink 182 which is a hard song to sing and the person had bad timing from what I seen. Everyone on the other hand did really awesome and the best songs from it happened to be the one Black Panther did to “Roar” by Katie Perry, Dead Pool doing “Thomas the Tank Engine,” and of course Captain Marvel doing “Immortals” and perfect timing for the newest Captain Marvel film. Hoping this group does another musical like this for next year because they did a really good job with this one. I also did attend the script reading again and it was still entertaining. All thanks to this year’s reading I want to watch Zootopia due to how well Paul St. Peter and Derek Steven Prince reading their parts. Plus, Tia Ballard being a part of it as well. Speaking of which!

Guests: This year’s guests were great again! We still got Bruce doing his balloon creations, heck Gondras even challenged him with one of the many key blades from Kingdom Hearts and had it hung on our wall for a little while. Paul St. Peter still remembers us as usual and we did hand him over our pamphlets which I will get to later. It felt great to meet Tia Ballard since of course she played Happy and glad to get to interview her for the channel. We also got to sit down with Sawa since we didn’t get to last year. We also had Nobu with her which a lot of you may not know this is our FIRST Japanese recording artist interview to date. Yay! Stay tuned everyone we will get those videos up since I was sick after all. What was also awesome was meeting Hisashi Yakawa in person. He was the one who did the art for Pokémon when it came out in 1997 and the first four seasons of Sailor Moon. I have been a major fan of both when I was a pre-teen and still remembered not only reading Teen People, Pop Star and other teen magazines I also collected Pokémon cards and Sailor Moon cards and stickers. I did bring my box set of the first twenty six episodes of Pokémon that got signed by Veronica Taylor and Eric Stuart and now Mr. Yakawa and of course on our wall in our apartment are pictures of Sailor Moon he has drawn to give to people. Did we get stuff signed by Tia in case if you’re wondering, we did get Cat Planet Cuties and a part of Fairy Tail with Happy and Natsu on it? Gondras did bring our Kingdom Hearts 3 art book to get signed by Paul and Derek since they are in the game as well.

Vendor Room: Finally, I have to include the Vendor Room. I felt this year it was more organized and sectioned off with Bruce doing his work in his corner, long with anything on display, then of course we had the guests along one side of the wall, the cosplay guests in one box, and then the vendors selling items in another. I only bought a few items in the room since we were busy all weekend and did go into the mall for food and I did have to drop by the NYX store for some stuff.

First off is the Tyaki stand! I loved this girl’s little cakes and glad she came back. Funny thing was while being in the Press Booth, we found one and Gondras thought it was our Japanese Snacks friend who brought it and we took it and when I ate it I felt the familiar taste since it was cookies and cream. On Sunday, I found her stand and happy I did since I got a sample pack this time where I got to not only have her classic flavors but also two new ones which were white chocolate caramel and the breakfast delight. I still love the chocolate peanut butter one as usual since I am a Reese’s lover and of course the chocolate chips in these are really good. I did buy from the shirt stand that helped us during Holiday Matsuri with my cane. I did get the United States of Smash shirt since that was All Might’s most epic battle in My Hero Academia and the guy at the stand remembered I loved Steven Universe and had a new one where Steven is Dr. Strange and made sense, I even worn it when Daddy Blue Cat visited me last month. I did thank them for the help during Matsuri by the way and did mention how I posted my story time video about it and used it on the Omni group to say, “Hey! This happened so watch out!” And finally, Japanese Snacks Guy was around yet again and picked up some new snacks. One of them happened to be takoyaki chips. If you guys don’t know what this little dish is its octopus dumplings and they are delicious! I had them during a Japanese culture festival in Orlando years ago and squid is one of my favorite seafood of all time since I do love Calamari. These chips to me tasted like plain Lay’s since I felt like I didn’t taste anything. I was hoping to be hit by a slight touch of fish flake and octopus mixed in or at least seaweed but nothing. Another item was melon flavored Kit Kats which was interesting to say the least. I was dying down a bit on Kit Kats since I have so much chocolate to eat still but ever since I moved I haven’t eaten it much due to how mellow I’ve been. I did try one and it felt like I was eating cantaloupe covered wafers and it was a light chocolate taste mixed in. Not bad in a way. I haven’t tried the gummies I bought in apple and peach since it’s been forever since I had Japanese gummies. I hope he will be at Ranger Stop since that is the next con we will be aiming for!

Verdict: CONVENTION ACCOMPLISHED! I have to give it an Accomplished because I felt like we have accomplished some things and that includes getting some new things made to promote ourselves and they are shirts and pamphlets. Yes, ever since Holiday Matsuri last year I had an idea to get pamphlets made to show our work even to handlers since it feels like our work is not being taken seriously. Gondras did say it was a good idea to do and it worked out well since we had them made at FedEx and he did the design with a template and got them done in time for the convention that weekend. FedEx has pretty good prices so will be printing with them instead of Staples. And now onto shirts which people did like. Last year while doing the Customer Service Basics class, the teacher told me that we do cosplay and enjoy it but should dress the part of representing a blog and looking back on it I do agree with that. So, for a few months I looked into Vista Print and even Custom Ink for shirts and all thanks to the excellent customer service that Custom Ink has done even helped with the design after understanding that I am blind that the shirts came out amazing! Even had a sample for GOndras to try in his size because we have to make sure he could fit in their shirts and he did. Definitely will be having these shirts with us and I will be going back to Custom Ink for anything else because they do other items too and I have some ideas. Also, we still have our lovely business cards to pass out to attendees too. So hoping our new promo material keeps going.

Also, we did get to stay in the hotel finally since it would be hard commuting back and forth between Daytona and Orlando and the Florida Hotel has some of the best hospitality I’ve ever seen. Better, or shall I say way better than the World Center because I even had text messages sent asking about my stay and the guy who helped at check out even gave ideas on breakfast when I asked him. And not only that, some tourists even helped me when it came to finding the Starbucks and a bathroom too. And I think the hospitality also spreads through the mall since it is attached to it, I got amazing service at the NYX Store too since some of the store attendants, Gondras, and I did talk about how NYX;s complexion items are hypoallergenic and did mention that the primer, Hydro Touch, works out for me. And anyone who wants to know, the location is nice since it’s a lot more roomy than the other one I’ve been to since it fit all the displays and makeup stations very well.

And one last accomplishment would probably be finally getting to interview Sawa and Nobu because we wanted to interview Sawa since last year and due to scheduling we couldn’t get that chance until this time around.

Needs for Improvement: Even though the convention was a success but I do have one thing to talk about that needs to be improved and that is the Press Booth. This year press teams get to have time blocks to promote themselves, even play recordings, and even interview attendees if they wanted and well…I felt…this was a bust! How so? Sorry to say, forgot to disclaim but this is a review based on thoughts and opinions of the lead writer after all and well due to the location of the booth people didn’t stop by. I am a very quiet observer despite my extrovert personality and from what I heard most of the attendees were either with the cosplay guests, the industry guests, or even in Artist’s Alley and the Press Booth was a small alcove in the back of the vendor’s area and it felt hidden away. Heck, even when we played one of our interviews from Omni Fandom Expo past no one paid attention. To me this should have been in an easier to spot area rather than a tiny alcove. We are press and we promote our work and we should be loud and be seen rather than be hidden. Heck, we used the last hour or so of the convention to use for interviews which is another thing which I have noticed where one press team did use the booth to interview Tia Ballard when we did our interview upstairs with her which I think the Press Booth should have been used better as the interview spot rather than upstairs. Which that does draw attention to an audience where people could be like, “Hey, someone’s talking to someone, let’s watch!” I even watched the Tia interview myself at the end. Not only that there was supposed to be a press conference thing with Hisashi and Mamoru but that didn’t happen unfortunately at the Press Booth. If this was used again, I would say just use it for all guest interviews and place it in an easier to see spot because we want to show our work and sucked that not a lot of people paid attention to do so.

And another thing, which I didn’t realize until our buddy Evan said it, guest autograph times should be posted on the booths for them somewhere because there were times where we wondered what time some people would show up and conventions tend to put a small display board saying, “Person Will Be Here At…” Heck, even Holiday Matsuri does it. So, why not have poster board saying it? Thinking about it now…as a joke maybe…maybe I should be in the creative team for this convention. Just saying!

Well, that is it for this review! I am glad we got to do another year of Omni Fandom Expo and this has been the only convention that keeps us coming to do our work every year. I still remember 2014 and how it was a small and very ambitious convention and it has morphed into what we attend today. I would say this has been the best year besides 2014 and 2015 combined. Plus, it is always blind people friendly because my cane is still in one piece and I don’t feel invisible either as in just an attendee with a prop. Which for the record my cane is not a prop! Anyways, hoping next year will bring many more people and there is one guest that should come back and he misses Orlando since I have gotten back in touch with him and that is Neil Kaplan! Reason why I got back in touch is that recently the NFB did a news story talking about the CWB not hiring a blind actor to play a blind character and I remembered Neil having a class teaching students at the Braille Institute in California how to do voice acting. He no longer does it but still stays in touch with students and did mention Omni Fandom Expo and he wants to be a guest. So Omni, if you are reading this, please get Neil! He is one of the biggest sweethearts and he has been on Digimon and of course he did say he wants to sit down with us for an interview which is even more awesome.

So, what is next for Nerdy Shique Universe? Well, my video trying out the new Jeffree Starr Blue Blood pallet tomorrow! Yes, I jumped the gun and picked up one of his bundles from his collection to bring it to you all on the YouTube Quadrant and I will also post the video here for anyone who may be curious little space kitties as well. Of course we have our interviews from Omni Fandom Expo, I am sorry for not getting any events recorded. First, the Marvel musical was not allowed to be recorded, also went to night events that would kick you out if you did record it, and plus I was enjoying attending things by myself since I rarely got to do it. Yes I could have done it at Matsuri but after the cane breaking I would have gotten hurt if I tried. Also Press Booth did keep us pretty busy. Again, sorry about that! And I have more posts to come!

Movies: Alita: Battle Angel Review

Hello to all of my beautiful nerds and welcome back from traveling the vast universe. I am back and with a movie review.

Alita: Battle Angel

This past weekend Gondras and I caught the new

This movie takes place in the twenty-sixth century where a floating city named Zolem survives something known as the Fall. We are in Iron City where the story is told and we meet Dr. Ida where he finds the torso and the head of a cyborg girl in the trash heaps and finds out her brain is still in tact. After bringing her back to life and naming her Alita, Alita must remember who she was and know what she has to become and able to help her new father and her new love interest, Hugo, in order to survive in Zolem and fight any other cyborg. Aalita movie and it was due to Movie Bob reviewing it. I know Ghost In the Shell was not a success at the box office and some people were skeptical about this one and well I was all in for it because Heroine Worship by. Sarah Kune mentioned this title since the main character, Aveta loved reading this title when she was younger and compared herself to her. When I heard that this was going to be movie I was happy. I am going to do this review a little differently since I am an anime fan and have been one since nine years old, I am doing this from someone who has not seen nor read the riginal source material since I went in with an open mind. First I must do this!

Disclaimer: This review is based on thoughts and observations of the lead writer of this blog. Please respect her thoughts because they aren’t the same as everyone else’s.

This movie is set in the twentieth-sixth century where floating cities exist, well a floating city by the name of Zolem survived an event known as the Fall. People of Iron City dream of living there but the only way of getting there is becoming the True Champion. One thing that falls to Iron City is old trash and one day Dr. Ida stumbles upon a head and a torso of a girl with her brain intact. He takes her back and replaces her cyborg parts to revive her and she has no memory of who she was nor what she was and where she was during the Fall either.

After meeting Hugo, she starts knowing about girls being tragetted and killed on the streets and other many things like a sport that she starts competing in and other cyborgs trying to hurt her and Dr. Ida who has been a Warrior Hunter underneath and as she starts fighting for him and Hugo she starts learning about old memories of who and what she was, a warrior herself.

Thoughts: This movie was very good and despite its issues and somewhat of a mess it was cared for even with the source material. This movie was adapted from the manga and anime along with OVAs on top of it and like most movies being adapted from a cartoon or anime series crunching a lot of episodes into a two hours plus film can be an issue but this was done very well.

We have to thank James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez for doing a great job on this and having excellent teamwork on this. Cameron is known for Aavatar and Titanic while Rodriguez is known for Spy Kids, Machete, and Shark Boy & Lava Girl except this movie is beyond the scope of those movies Rodriguez has done. I have to say it was a great thing that the wait to do this movie was well worth it because if we had gotten it earlier it would have been a complete mess and not do well at the box office and we would not get any sequels. I think Rodriguez coming in was the better choice because he and Cameron did handle this with care and gave us something new and different and gave us something whole rather than a half assed mess. I wish these two would adapt the Evangelion as a movie or even the Rebuild movies into live-action or other anime films and series because they not only shown what happens in a post apocalyptic world to life with beautiful CGI but also characters that you can relate to.

Speaking f characters, the cyborgs were really well designed and loved how Gondras described some of them along with the audio description,, which did work for me this time, even Alita herself was well designed. People cracked on her for the eyes but when you look at a cyborg she is supposed to be a little doll-like and you see it with the other cyborgs taking on doll-like apperaances, even Zzapan wheere he always cared about his face for example. Then of course the weapons they use like the one cyborg who had mantis arms as her weapons. These designs are just amazing. Another bit is the CGI having a real quality to it. I think they had the motion cap actors take on that real look like an actual person walking next to each other. One example is the scene with Hugo and Alita together after her upgrade where he gives her a touch along her arm and she feels it and she feels it. I don’t know what kind of tech they are using but they need to pass it onto other fil studios because CGI in other works need some work. Or at least an overhaul. Not only that with the CGI, the fight chorography that was used in this film was amazing and felt like the audio description couldn’t keep up. You can tell that time was put into this film and was well taken care of over the years because this movie is an action flick so we need great fight scenes. I did say it take on the original material very well.

Cons: I did talk about the pros and now for the cons. We did notice that some people had issues with the ending taking too long than it should be. Yes, there should be some great stopping points but this is a film that brings people into the world and introduces the characters and the villain like most films do. I have a feeling with how it ended that a sequel will be done with how much was put into it and did hear the manga is pretty long but I think they did a good job with what they put into it and did not do what Shamalan did. If you remembered Last Airbender and how bad that was a storytelling mess without personality you can see this movie was far from that.

Some people did have issues with the whole telling the story through action and having exposition being explained. Got to remember that this is being adapted from a manga series and anime and anime does a lot of that. For instance, using one of my favorite titles, Elfen Lied with explaining what Lucy was in the first episode. As in using just using the creepy atmosphere of coming at you and the other characters as she escapes and taking out people to show her power says “Oh crap! She is a threat! Run!” With Alita, in one scene when she remembers her first piece of her past she starts fighting when the situation got rough. This spells out, “Oh crap! She fights too?” I would say if you are not into anime, go into this movie with an open mind and remember that this story is told with action and points explained that are imperative to the sotry.

And now Hugo! People had issues with him as a character because how he shows up out of nowhere as the love interest. Sometimes this does happen in a lot of movies, even anime sometimes shows some random person being the random love interest. Look at Titanic with Jack showing up and that romance between him and Rose starting. I did love it how Hugo introduced Alita to chocolate because she was acting like a girl at that moment and even more around him as the film went on until the climax. This does show how a cyborg can act human besides the robot parts and it gave Alita a nice piece of innocence. I do agree with Bob that this does fit in the idea of being meant for teenage girls being in the audience even if they haven’t gotten into the anime in the first place. Heck, you see that rebellious side to Alita throughout the film even when she wanted to go against Ida in order to protect him. I did love how she acted towards the guys on the Motor Ball court and I do like that nice futuristic spin on basketball.

Rating: 4.5 Star Paw Prints Out of 5! It was hard to see about giving a four or five but I met in between. This was a film to enjoy because of not only its visuals but the storytelling as well. I am glad that Cameron and Rodriguez partenred up for this project and came up with a great finished film. I am hoping this film does well at the box offices because it does a bit of sequel bait to work with and I want to see more of this movie series. If this film does become succssful that would bring more anime films to live-action. I was hoping Voltron being one of them and if that happened I think it would be interesting taking on Legendary Defender. Not only that bring that long-awaited Evangelion film since that was thrown out years ago. I think some of the studios that done the adaptations should take notes because of how well done it was put together despite the ending being clunky but of course how the characters interacted with each other. As in, Alita acting more human and how she interacted with the cyborgs, Ida, and Hugo even her hatred towards Vector. I am also thinking that Cameron and Rodriguez should keep working on more projects due to how well they cared for source material and used a big budget to create something golden. That is why I am giving this movie the Star Paw Print of Approval with how well it was made, how they used their tech to create the CGI, and so much more. Hey, can we get an Alita world next? I am just saying!

Well, that is it for this review! Man, it felt good to get back to writing movie reviews! Next will be my Omni Fandom Expo Spotlight! Stay tuned guys!

Holiday Matsuri 2016 Cosplay Gallery

Here’s our collection of cosplay photos, featuring entrants and winners from the Cosplay Runway.

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TransMedia Retrospective: Pokemon

Hello Shiquers and welcome back to Nerdy Shique Universe! We all know the catch phrase “Gotta Catch Em All!” and of course the original theme song to the biggest anime and video game series and that is Pokemon! This series has been one of the most popular and has still grown since and had many media versions of itself, which includes video games, card games, toys, manga, and so on! As a way to celebrate AFO getting two of the original cast members, we will be looking at this series when it comes to the major media areas!

Basic Idea: Since Pokemon has been around since the 90’s and has been ever growing, the basic premise is that it started in 1995 and created by Satoshi Tajiri and the Pokemon Company. The franchise started as a two video game pair for the Game Boy that was developed by Game Freak and published by Nintendo. This series centers around how people catch creatures known as Pocket Monsters or Pokemon for short in balls called the Pokeball and fight other people and train them for sport.

Video Games: Before looking at the anime, we got to look at the place where it started it all and that is the video games! Each game is pretty much a strategy RPG with battles and going to different towns in many regions. There have been six generations thus far and the first one started with Red and Blue on the original Game Boy that started off in the Kanto region and of course the original 151 known as First Generation. At first it was Red and Green Versions in Japan and then released the Blue Version over there as an expansion but only Red and Blue had their release here in the US in September of 1998. There was of course Yellow, which was the Special Pikachu Edition, which was based on the popular anime synopsis and did have the same idea of Pokedex stuff like in the Blue and Red versions here, what was great is that you got to go up against Jessie and James like in the anime.

Second Gen brought us Gold, Silver, and Crystal, which later turned into Heart Gold and Soul Silver for the DS, featured the Johto region and a hundred more Pokemon that went from Chikorita to Celebi. This does get based on the Kansai region of Japan like how Kanto did in Red, Blue, and Yellow.

Third Gen kind of got weird and this time it expanded the Game Boy into its advanced state through the Game Boy Advanced with Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald, which we have Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire for the 3DS today. This even brought remakes of Red and Blue through Leaf Green and Fire Red to the Advanced as well and these games all introduced 135 new species starting with Treeko and all the way through Deoxys. Reason being with the Pokemon being a little strange, this is where some of them took on inanimate objects, well the Regis for the most part that kind of looked like speakers eventhough Exploud and Explodster already covered that. This brought the entire total to 386 to catch in these games except they got some criticisms due to some things that were left out including the day and night switch which started in Gold and Silver. Man, that would be hard for turning Evee in either a Umbreon or Espeon. It also introduced catching certain Pokemon in some areas which brought a problem of only catching 202 out of the 386 in Hoen, which was based on the Kyushu region of Japan. A little fact, I did play Sapphire but the copy I had kept deleting my games, I am guessing that some copies had a glitch and glad I got Alpha Sapphire in the end so I can play the third region.

Fourth Generation, which was introduced in 2006 brought us Diamond and Pearl and then Platinum later on for the DS. The Sinnoh Region brought us new 107 speies of Pokemon which were from Turtwig to Arsius. Great thing about these games and the DS at the time, it featured using the touch screen features to make Poffins with the stykus, entering the Pokemon contest, and of course battling, which is still implemented on the 3DS and 3DS XL and even the now New 3DS today! It also brought new features like WiFi battles which made it easier than the old cable connections we all remembered from Game Boy. It did bring the day and night features from second gen and did expand the Pokemon Contests from third gen. This region was based on the Hokaido region and Sattelin in Russia since of course Route 116 that leads you to Snowpointe City to take on Candace. It also features underground battles and digging for things such as evolution stones and heart scales. Fourth Gen did also have a few spin off games which included a follow up to Pokemon Stadium with Pokemon Battle Revolution for the Wii.

Fifth Gen, which is where it gets weirder, takes place in the Unova Region in Black and White and both Black and White 2 which is based on New York City in the US. This generation introduced new 156 to the roster which started with Victini and ended with Genesect. If you read my review on Black 1, you know these new Pokemon were weird and started being based on inanimate objects and food. Yeah, they were really running out of ideas! Not only the weird Pokemon and new region, these games used the 3D rendering on the 3DS with Castelia City, which was hard to navigate for me. I will be playing White 2 since that and Black 2 kind of do a different direction of the region.

Now onto Sixth Gen, which is the games of X and Y! These games take place in the Kalos Region which is based on France and some areas of Europe, which we do run into Stone Henge on one of the routes. I wonder if that will happen again in the next game to introduce more to this region. This region also brought some more new Pokemon and even a new type, Fairy Type, and one of them happened to be the newest Evee, Silveon. This game brought on more of the 3D by rendering it in 3D along with the battles which take us back to Pokemon Stadium and of course we get Lumios City bringing more of that mechanic. Will the next one to complete this region’s trilogy do the same? Unless there will be an X2 and Y2? Let’s see what happens!

Anime: Now onto the anime! Both the anime and movies were based loosely on the games, well besides Yellow, follow the adventures of Ash, aka Satoshi in Japan, in becoming the next Pokemon Master. He travels with Brock, gym leader of Pewter City, and Misty, one of many sisters from the Cerulean Gym, to make him become the best Pokemon Master. He meets a lot of people on his quest and battle to get badges and get to meet new Pokemon with his signature first, Pikachu, and catch many others.

The group does change by the Third Generation when he meets May, daughter of Norman of the Peddleburg Gym, and her brother Max and get reunited with Brock with the new adventures in Hoen. Brock and Ash become a teacher to the both of them since Max wants to be a Pokemon Trainer while May becomes a Pokemon Coordinator to compete in contests.

Both Brock and Ash move onto Sinnoh where they meet an aspiring coordinator named Dawn and go through the region to not only get badges but Ash becomes a contest competitor himself. The series does end with both Brock and Ash going back to Kanto where Brock goes off to become a Pokemon Doctor for real. With Best Wishes, which is based on Black and White, is where it gets weird and didn’t like the series much. Ash meets two new friends, Cylan and Iris. I kind of noticed how with this one, Ash went type-weakness stupid, as in he kept on choosing the wrong Pokemon to fight against what they are weak against to. Good example is the episode against his newest rival and uses his Ashawat against their Sirvine when according to the type logic water’s weak grass Pokemon. No wonder my Tolterra was great in the Pastoria Gym! Iris even yells at him for it. Hell, even using Pikachu in the last gym, Roxy’s gym, did poison him. Kind of shows how he can be weak after being so overpowered in every season. Still, don’t know what happened with the writing but Ash should be able to know better especially with all his losses in the past region leagues. I know I am kind of bashing but when watching this season on the Pokemon TV app when it was on my phone, made me sad with how the character of Ash kind of went downhill. This season should’ve been written a bit more. And the casting for Iris for me…she did kind of sounded bored! Which reminds me!

Did You Know?4Kids was the original dubbing studio for Pokemon. By 2006, they handed all licensing to Pokemon USA which is now the Pokemon Company. I miss the old casting, which had Veronica Taylor as Ash and did an awesome job as May in the third generation anime. And of course, Eric stuart as Brock and Rachel Lillis as Misty.

Pokemon XY is the current series where Ash travels with childhood friend, Serena, and brother and sister duo, Clement and Bonnie. I did like the premiere episode or episodes where Ash meets his first Pokemon in this region, Froaky! And then it does show a little bit of mega evolution with Blazeken.

There have been seventeen films for this anime along with it! And the recent has been Diansy and the Cocoon of of Destruction. I can see why Diansy was a special Pokemon for the games. If you want a full list, I would say go to Wikipedia because we all know that each region came with 2 to 3 movies each, especially with the Unova region which looked like it had four because it dealt with Victini, Reshiram, Kyuram, the three or shall I say Four Musketeer Pokemon since you meet the Fourth one in Black and White 2, and of course, Keldio. And oh yes, Genesect, which that movie…introduced Mega Evolved Mewtwo Y which led into X and Y.

Card Game: The TCG for Pokemon pretty much is like the video games except you collect cards in the real world of the many Pokemon, Trainers, and Energy cards, which are used to power up for attacks. I have collected the cards myself and have grown with them and man it has evolved in the rules and the cards! I can’t collect anymore due to being blind even though I do have decks with braille labels. I just play the video games! You can find the XY packs and tins, not sure if they have some for Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire since they made cards for Heart Gold and Soul Silver!

Manga: Pokemon had various manga, especially published for North America. The first was The Electric Tale of Pikachu which was split into four titles, which the first one was Electric Tale, then Pikachu Shocks Back, Pikachu Boogaloo, and Sufs Up Pikachu! These manga were based loosely on the anime While Pokemon Adventure was mostly based on the video games and does go by the player characters you play as in each region. Ther are many others that were released by Viz and not by Viz but another company here in the US. There are too many to mention but those are the main two since I remembered reading Electric Tale when it was published here back in the 90s.

So, that is it for this TransMedia Tretrospective! Pokemon has been a major part of our lives and it is still is to this day! With new games, merch, and of course more anime, this has been an evergrowing series and will keep growing! No matter how it will keep going, we will Gotta Catch Em All!

What is next for Nerdy Shique Universe? With mentioning Pokemon, I will do a cosplay post on it since I am working on my latest Pokemon cosplay! And also now waiting on my Ipsy and BoxyCharm shipping e-mails! And well….decided next post I need to talk about something serious that has taken place in the Beauty World! Stay tuned for that!

Trans Media Retrospective: .hack

Hello everyone and welcome back! Finals are over and it’s time for me to do another post and I just got a lightbulb and it is based on the project I had to do for one of my classes this spring!

 

So, in the light of the MetroCon theme of Old School vs. New School, I will be a part of a cosplay group with my fiance, Gondras, that deals with both .hack and Sword Art Online due to how Sword Art has been one of the newest online RPG centered series and has been on Toonami for months, why not do a versus group with a long running one called .hack which is still going on for years!

 

.hack is one of those series that has been transformed in many ways from being in text novels, to anime series, video games, and manga adaptations of some of the parts off the story for fans to enjoy! Trust me, when I first saw sign on Toonami back in 2004, I wanted to see more of it and that is how I got into the first round of games, Infection, Mutation, Outbreak, and Quarantine. It didn’t end there of course since it grown and now we have the newer game for the PSP, well new in our eyes, Link, it won’t probably stop there! Even TV Tropes referred to this series as “.hack//GIVE US ALL YOUR MONEY!” Which I will show you why and how it evolved into this idea!

 

Behind THE WORLD

 

The entire franchise of .hack deals with a virtual online MMO known as “The World,” which takes players into an online setting through headsets and using game pads hooked up to their computers so they can go through virtual zones by making keywords. Within the series, this fictional game was created by Herman Hoerwick, which created the first game where “The World” came from known as “Fragment,” and Cyber Connect aka CC Corp.

 

Basically, players go into Root Towns through Chaos Gates of any server that they start playing in or get transferred to since each stage they play in can be played in different servers and in order to log out, they have to be in the Root Town they started off in. In order to get to the areas to play and fight monsters and go through dungeons is based on creating three keywords and once they are made, they get sent to that area. I would warn anyone who wants to find the first set of games, or the second, or even link, be careful when making these words or choosing a random area, you may get levels that may be too hard for you and your companions that you recruited. I would say go with a level below and what level you’re at, trust me, I went through times when I was at level 9 and tried taking on level 11 areas, not easy!

 

What gave premise to the story? Well, it deals with viruses and how the real world in the series got effected, which the firstvirus known as Pluto’s Kiss caused a major malfunction on the internet and caused a switch to a newer system. Later on, a newer virus becomes important in the games, which I will mention later, known as “The Twilight Incident,” aka “Pluto” gives more storytelling especially in the four OVAs that you get in the games. Speaking of anime, shall we started with the video games first? Not yet! I do have to mention, there is a different version of the World that does show up as a portable version within the story! It takes place a thousand years after the original versions of the World, which gets mentioned later on in this post!

 

Main Characters

 

So, like many series that has been transformed, there are many characters that get mentioned throughout the entire series as well! I will mention the most important characters that are really the ones that the stories revolve around!

 

Aura: This character is basically the seed of the entire storyline! She is an AI created by Hoerwick as a dedication to his dead lover and the daughter that was supposed to be his if his lover gave him kids! She is supposed to be the perfect AI but Morgana kept her asleep in order to keep her from doing so, even during the games she gets chased by Morgana’s phases in order to keep the perfect Data Drain, which was given through a book turned into a bracelet to defeat Morgana! Here are the characters that get linked to her!

 

Kite, character from the games: You play as the Twin Blade Kite in the first round of games who has to save people who come under comas by the Phase, Skeith, he gets the Twilight Bracelet from Aura and criptic e-mails from her in order to beat the Eight Phases and Kubia, the Yang to the Bracelet’s Yin, which causes it to be destroyed and a new one gets made, The Dawn Bracelet.

 

Haseo, .hack//roots and g. u. aka Guilty Universe: The main cAlbierio, a. i. buster (not always going to put, .hack): The main character from the novel series, A. I. Buster is played in the game by a system administrator at CC Corp and has to take out any anamolies and the A. I., Lycoris, that may cause problems within the game. He does meet with Lycoris without knowing who she was while collecting the fragments of her and then deleted her when Lycoris realizes she can’t exist there. He does show up in volume 2 and ends while chasing Tsukasa and then ends up in a coma after meeting Macha and had a forced resignation placed on him for causing “The Twilight Incident,” which he was blamed for.

 

Shugo Kunasaki, from Legend of the Twilight: A player who thought he outgrew video games until he won a contest with his twin sister, Rrina and got an avatar version of Kite in chibi form along with his sister who got the chibi version of BlackRose that was arranged by Aura and gets in contact with him by giving him a version of Kite’s bracelet that doesn’t harm humans and becomes a character from the past in order to reunite with her daughter, Xiphi.

 

Tsukasa, sign: the main character of .HACK//SIGN who’s player is in a coma while his consciousness is awake in the world. Morgana keeps him from waking up Aura by placing negative thoughts into him and not reaching out to the other characters of the series until later, Subaru, Mimiru, Bear, and the others and causes Aura to awaken and let him log off.

 

Xiphi from Legend of the Twilight: Aura’s daughter and the A. I. that becomes attached to Shugo by smelling the scent of her mother on Shugo’s bracelet. Even though she starts out as a brat due to her attachment to Shugo and Rina, but she does mature towards the end.

 

Haseo from ROOTS and G.U.: a rogue and a “player killer killer,” just like the original design of him, Sora, was in the game and chased by player killers himself and then joined the Twilight Brigade, headed by Ovan. Ovan disappears while his buddy, Shino, gets placed into a coma by Ovan. He then goes up against Tri-Edge which causes him to get data drained and restored and soon gains the powers of Skeith as an avatar.

 

Aida from G. U.: The A. I. of the newer version of the World from the disappearance of Aura. Unlike helping the players, Aida causes players to go insane or slip into a coma in the real world. But the Eight Epitaph users, who gained avatars of the Phases from the original games, are immune to Aida’s virus and can Data Drain, which was said caused Aida in the first place due to how illegal it was.

 

Tokio Kuryuu from LINK: the main character in the portable game and was transported into the game after meeting the new student, Saika, who gives him a special copy of the game and meets up with Kite. He was forced to work with Saika to find the chrono Core. Tokio is seen as a double ware which is a human can be transported into the game due to a digitized technology.

 

 

 

Anime and Video Games:

 

Since I am done with characters, well the bigtger ones since it took a while, now onto anime and video games! I placed these two together because the both of them go hand in hand due to how the events for each half take on! As you know sign was the first series to start off the story, despite a. i. buster was the forerunner of the entire story and how Lycoris came to be and how it later changed into Aura from there. Anyways, sign was the first tale that tells how Tsukasa,a Wavemaster player, can’t logout due to his player in the real world was placed into a coma due to being used by Morgana in order to keep Aura asleep! He meets characters such as Subaru, Mimiru, Crim, Bear, and many others that help in getting over his predicament to beat Morgana to wake up Aura to free her. This story helped start the next arc of the tail with the first round of Playstation 2 games, Infection, Mutation, Outbreak, and Quarantine, which follows Kite who was given the power of the Twilight Bracelet to Data Drain while his friend Orca was Data Drained by Skeith before getting the power but Aura gave it to Kite after it happened, which had him meet BlackRose in order to solve the mystery of the comas in the real world with players and help Aura out by destroying the Phases that were made to destroy her. An interesting fact about these four games, even though players finished the first three games, Quarantine was the game they didn’t finish due to how events unfolded, even the prologue scenes of the games kind of give you sad tidings to come! I could see why since I was in an EBay bidding war over this game due to GameStop not carrying it since people hardly bought it! Now I can see why it didn’t get traded in!

 

Liminality, which are the four OVA episodes that are included with the first round of games, these four episodes are correspondent to each game they came in and takes place in the real world rather than inside The World. Like Kite’s and BlackRose’s adventure of looking into what is causing people to go into comas within the game, the story outside with the characters, Mai Minase, Yuki Ihara, Kyoko Tihono, and Junochiro Tokuoka, who used to work for Cyber Connect, in order to see why people are slipping into comas after playing The World at certain points of the game. I found it interesting since we tend to see what goes on within the games while playing as Kite and BlackRose, we get to see what happens on the outside of the games by seeing other chracters that have loved ones going into comas, for example in the first episode Mai’s boyfriend ends up in a coma and she ends up staying awake after being sent to the hospital with him and wants to know why she wasn’t in a coma as well and wants to help her boyfriend out. Not only that, it takes a deeper look into the Pluto’s Kiss Virus that takes place since in the second episode, Yuki Ihara gets trapped in the mall when the virus hits and while playing the game Mutation, you get a news article in the “News” menu to read about the virus going on and how it cut off so many communication devices and computers in order to continue with the game and read more message board posts for keywords and so on! This is a way of interacting between the games and the anime series since you get both sides of the story, inside The World and outside by seeing these characters solving the mystery behind the computer viruses and comas and see how both worlds change due to how the adventure takes on in beating the Phases and how the characters interact in order to take on the final boss in the end to save everyone who fell victim to the comas. If only most games were like this then we can see two sides of the story!

 

Legend of the Twilight, the next part of the story which takes the Kite and BlackRose story and feels like a spoof by what I saw and remembered and give it a new part of the Aura story! This is a twelve episode series that introduces twins, Rina and Shugo, who end up getting the chibi versions of BlackRose and Kite and Shugo gets the Twilight Bracelet and the both of them have to solve the mystery behind it. This is more of an alternative version of the manga, which I will touch upon later!

 

Roots is the next part of the story and prequel to the G. U. games which you get introduced to Haseo and how he got into the Twilight Brigade and how his character came to be, “The Terror of Death” to many and towards the end it gives you an idea of how G. U. started, which the games takes a look into how Haseo has to rescue Shino from her coma from Roots but meets other characters and finds out that he and seven other players hold a power known as the “Epitaph,” which holds an avatar of the Eight Phases from the original games. I never played these games, even though my copy of the Roots box set came with the demo disc, but I think I was a little too late in getting the video games from GameStop since they stopped carrying PS2 games. An interesting fact though is that you can’t get the Roots anime in stores unless you want to go and find it, you can find it on EBay but for a hundred bucks! How I got mine? Well, I was at AFO 2012 and was at a stand and found all the .hack stuff and came across the boxset for it and saw it was $60 less than the EBay price! So, I snatched it up before someone got it! Yeah, it is rare to find!

 

Finally, Link, is the newest game that is available for the PSP in Japan, not sure if it will ever come to stateside but it takes places years after the G. U. games and takes on the story of Tokio, a fourteen year old, meets an exchange student who gives him a copy of The World and gets transported to the game! He ends up meeting The Twilight Warriors, who are characters from the previous games and try to save Aura from being corrupted!

 

There is a new game for Android and IOS systems in Japan but there will be an American version soon, while there is a new .hack game project announced in Japan but no platform to be announced as of now! Who knows, maybe E3 will get that announcement in the future? I will be waiting!

 

Books and Manga:

 

Like most anime, there is always a manga version, but .hack is one universe that not only has manga but books as well for everyone to enjoy different sides of the story as they travel through each anime and video game adaptation!

 

  1. I. Buster: This story is the prequel to the entire series itself! This two volume story shows how Alberio meets the original A. I. Lycoris and data drains her at first and then meets another girl and finds remnants of her to reconstruct6 Lycoris once again! Plus, it shows the characters Orca and Balmung become Descendants of Fianna as Orca of the Azure Sea and Balmung of the Azure Sky by defeating the One Sin. Even though I didn’t read volume two but I did read the first volume which I couldn’t put down at all!

 

Zero: This novel series takes place after Sora after being trapped due to Morgana and meet a Long Arm class by the name of Carl, and even tells the tale of life of Tsukasa in the real world.

 

Another Birth tells the story of the first video games through BlackRose’s point of view due to how we saw Kite’s point of view. If I could get this through Bookshare, I would so read it since I like the first round of games and see what happened to her during the times you don’t call on her for anything, since while playing you do get e-mails from her in clues that lead you to some of the Phases and Kubia.

 

Legend of the Twilight: This is the manga that I mentioned and pretty much follows through the anime did with the mystery of Aura, except the contest they got their character models was mostly mysterious.

 

Epitaph of the Twilight: novels that shows how Lara Hoerwick, Howard’s niece, gets trapped in The World.

 

Cell: Midori, a Edge Punisher, becomes a victim of PK her and get money for it and have as much money for herself. G. U. had many published stories for it as in manga and novel versions of the story, plus there is one talke that takes a humorous view of the story and another that talks about a former empress of the Demon Palace being obsessed with two of the characters.

 

There are many other manga and books published for this series but it will take a long time to talk about!

 

 

Cosplay:

 

Now that there has been the anime, manga, books, and video games, there is one part of the media world for .hack and that is cosplay! The entire series has many unique characters and many unique designs for them which has a lot of work to do in order to get it done for the convention season! Whether it is picking up parts at a Good Will or Salvation Army or going online for wigs, the cosplay idea is endless, especially with many variations of characters such as Haseo from the start of Roots to his Skeith Epitaph variation and the Shino version of Atollie. Besides doing the characters, there are times when someone can imagine and make their own characters, for example I will be doing a variation of my Soul Eater character by turning him into a Twin Blade like Kite. Waiting on the wig btw! And of course, there are the human characters for their game avatars, such as Mai from Liminality as one good example. Anyway as you look at it, cosplay has its own way of getting into .hack within transmedia.

 

So, that is about it for this retrospective! If you want to see anymore transmedia retrospectives of certain anime and video games, just comment down below!

 

Before I tell you all what’s next, I made a typo with the author of the Midnight Breed Series in my favorites post, her name was Lara Adrian, not Lauren. Sorry!

 

What is next? I have a haul from Ulta! Til next time!