Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Online friendships?

So, i've been putting thought into the whole notion of online friendships as of late, and i've been trying to pinpoint exactly where i stand on them. On the one hand, there's no physical contact with people you chat to over msn/email/online games, and sometimes you don't even know what the other person looks like. On the other hand however, surely the enjoyment you get from chatting and interacting with these people is no less "real" than that shared with people in a physical social environment.

I've been chatting online for many year now, as far back as 11 or 12 years old if i remember correctly, and in that time i've had friends come and go on and off line. I've fallen out with people from school, and people i've met through forums. I've felt emotionally attatched to people i've met online and off. I think it's reaching a point where i value my online friends just as much as those i have offline.

It's easy to become an object of ridicule for a statment such as that, as you open yourself up to the whole "you don't have any REAL friends, they're all miles away on a computer" but i don't think that should make a huge difference to how a friendship developes. I have made some pretty amazing friends online, whether they're through jpop forums (AHS) or online games (FF) i value them all. If they're unhappy, i'm there to listen to them. If they have some good news, i'm genuinely happy for them. If they just wanna vent, once again, i'm willing to hear them out. These are all aspects of a normal offline friendship, so in employing them online, you're pretty much breaking down the barrier of distance and computer.

I suppose i should stop now though, as i feel myself beginning to ramble aimlessly. I'll just finish with a short list of those who mean a lot to me (using screen-names):

(FF): Souel, Arnor, Milie, Rifu, Miry, Brigett, Hye, Halidar (don't ask me why :P)

(AHS): Soysaucestar, Pommy, Cory, Sxesven, Chibinina, Yvette.

Many of the AHS member's are no longer around, but i still consider them great friends.

Thankyou everyone, i value your friendship's greatly.

(and apologies to anyone i care about who was left off the list, i'm typing this on the fly and haven't actually got a full list to pick from lol.)

Friday, January 9, 2009


So, next week i have two meetings with IT trainer's to get an idea of what I could learn from their courses. I'm planning to head into computer maintenance/repair, so i'm looking for the best training I can currently get. Finger's crossed it goes well for me, it's about time i started earning some moolah.

I finally finished my Music Station and Kouhaku downloads. Only watched half of each so far, but Kouhaku really gave me a surprise with Jero - reportedly the first African-American enka singer. This guy's fantastic, really really great voice!

Just a short message then today, but better than the nothing i posted for months ^^. I may post again in future about my love of enka... as small as it is ^^;;

Monday, January 5, 2009


SO, i've added a new blog to my list on the side... the wonderous Pommy ^^ Seriously one of the greatest people i've met online... even if she is just a stones throw away from being clinically insane o.o

How was everyone's Christmas? Mine wasn't too bad, just growing older takes away a fair chunk of the wonder of the day. I'm no longer excited at 5am on the 25th of December, and i do miss that feeling, but oh well, I am 22 now, so it's to be expected ^^.

Anywho, I decided to treat myself after Christmas and finally purchased a PSP yay! Only have 4 games so far, but damn it was worth it just for Crisis Core. That game had one of the best endings i've ever witnessed, and the soundtrack was absolutely fantastic.

On the subject of game music, I found this user on youtube, katethegreat19 , who does, quite simply, the greatest covers of video game music i've ever heard. Not only does she write some excellent lyrics, but she's just such a talented musician and singer, i'm truly amazed by her.

I really look forward to seeing what else she comes out with in future ^^. I'm already a big fan!

Finally, with this being the Christmas/new year period i'd LOVE to comment on the Music Station Super Live and Kouhaku Uta Gassen, but as the downloads are going SO damn slow, that will have to wait until another time ^^.

Take care folks ^^ (whoever reads this lol)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Ah, the period leading up to Christmas is an enjoyable one for gamer's to say the least, and this year has been phenomenal. Infact, it's been SUCH a good period this year, that's it's actually become the WORST time to be a gamer, since it's next to impossible to afford all of what's out ><. Anyway, thankfully, due to my brother working at a rental store, I've had the privilege of playing all the new releases so far (for the 360) plus the few that I've purchased. Here's a few that have really struck a chord with me ^^.

Mirror's Edge

This is truly a new experience in gaming and deserves every award going for innovation and design. The feeling you get jumping between buildings and being chased by the police is exhilarating from start to finish. The music plays a big part in what makes the game so special, and I'm fallen completely in love with Still Alive by Lisa Miskovsky. Truly an excellent song that belongs with this game. The graphics are some of the best I've seen on any console in recent memory, though a lot of their appreciation is down to whether or not you like the style of the game's design. Personally i find the combination of the white buildings/rooftops and the red "runner vision" items a really striking sight.

However, all is not perfect in Mirror's Edge, though i wish it was. Sadly the game clocks in at a measly 5-6 hours play time on the story, and that was on normal mode (i normally play casual/easy on rentals so i can see as much of the game as possible) which is the highest difficulty straight out of the box. I also believe the length of the game hampered the story. Though it built up well from the start and was quite intriguing throughout, it was completely let down with the ending. I was hoping for something spectacular, but alas i was left with the same disappointment that plagued the end of Bioshock. It was an abrupt ending and one that didn't do the rest of the game justice. My only other complaint is that missing some of the jumps can get irritating after the 4th or 5th attempt, but the game is just so enjoyable that i didn't struggle at all to find the motivation to try again.

Aside from the story mode, there's speed runs and time trials available to play. I haven't spent much time on these yet as generally stuff like that doesn't interest me, but I'm planning to try them out tomorrow for the sole reason that the gameplay is so amazing.

Gears of War 2

Now this was worth waiting for, Gears 2 is most certainly "bigger, better and more bad ass" than the first. Returning to the role of Marcus Fenix was always going to be fun, but Epic outdid themselves imo. Gears 2 has built on the story from the first game, and as such the whole thing seems to have progressed naturally. It doesn't have the problem that some sequels suffer from where they struggle to continue the original story, resulting in over the top additions that just don't work properly in the game's context. You really get the feeling that in the time between Gears 1 and 2 , the fighting hasn't stopped, the COG soldiers are still in constant battle, and when you start up the game, you're pretty much right back in the saddle.

The character's and voice actors of Delta Squad really make this game something else, they raise it above your average shooter or action game. There's a Gears movie in the works, but i honestly don't think it's required. The story, voice acting and action of the game are easily on par with anything Hollywood could produce, and this really does result in you caring for the characters. There's a really feeling of brotherhood between Marcus, Dom, Baird and Cole, they don't always take thing's completely seriously, but when thing's kick off, you couldn't ask for a better group of guys covering your back.

A lot is said about the gore content of the Gears series, and although i am of the belief that some games really don't need the gore they put in (Fallout 3 - over the top and silly, but not exactly necessary) but with Gears i really feel it's integral. This is meant to be war against one of the most vicious adversaries ever created in games/movies/literature, this isn't the sci-fi fare of Halo where there's one super soldier and laser beams going off all over the place. You get up close and personal with a locust... you're going to want that chainsaw bayonet. War isn't meant to be a pretty sight, though with graphics like these it's occasionally hard to NOT "ooh" and "aah" at your surroundings.

As with Mirror's Edge, there's a problem with the length of the story mode though, clocking in at 8-12 hours depending on difficulty/skill etc... but the multiplayer will keep you coming back for more... especially Horde!

The Last Remnant

I can't exactly review this as I have yet to play it lol. I put in a preorder for this game this morning and should be receiving it sometime mid-late next week. This was one of the game's highest up my list for the year. It's SquareEnix so i was sold on it straight away, but when SE announces that it could be the future of RPG's, you have to pay attention. Sure they could be wrong, but these guys know their stuff. The story reportedly takes around 60 hours to complete... so i can't see me complaining about length any time soon :D Here's hoping it's as good as i expect it to be!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Hamasaki Ayumi

So, been listening to Ayumi a lot again recently. She's the kind of singer I can always go back to no matter how often. I may not worship the ground she walks on in the same way I used to when I first became a fan, but there's just something about her that makes it impossible to leave her and her music alone.

Recently I pre-ordered her 10th Anniversary singles collection due for release next month. It wasn't the cheapest purchase ever, costing just under £30 including postage from CdJapan but i'll be damned if it's not worth it. I feel proud and honoured to have discovered such an amazing talent as Ayumi's, and in my 8 years as a fan I've seen her grow and mature as a singer and a songwriter. I've witnessed her throw herself into music composition, producing some of her greatest song's to date, she took control of near enough every aspect of her career, and continued to be immensely successful.

I was saddened around the start of the year, as were many many other fans, to hear about her loss of hearing in one ear, but I only loved her more when she showed so much dedication to her fans and music. She's in a position where she could comfortably retire from the music industry but she's chosen to keep going. I respect and admire her for this, as do many more of her fans i'm sure.

I have yet to find another singer that touches me in quite this way. Sure I'm a huge Morning Musume/Hello! Project fan, and proud of that fact too, but when push comes to shove, they're not in the same league as Ayumi. I'd be surprised if any other singer in the world, not just Japan, could have such a hold over me.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Hurray for the 80's and kittens!

YAY! I got new kittens :D Well, one's mine and the other belongs to my brother. My brother's is a boy called Louie, and mine's a girl called Reina (no points for guessing why :P).

Anywho, Recently discovered yet another banned that confirms i should have been born and raised in Japan during the 80's. REBECCA are FANTASTIC. Seriously, I liked what i heard a long time back from Ayumi's "Idol on Stage" performances, but those pale in comparison to the originals. It's only been a few days, but i'm ordering an album next week, though i'm torn between Blond Saurus and Poison as both have songs i really really enjoy. I would buy both but i need to buy the final Haibane Renmei DVD to complete my box set ><.

Ontop of that though, the lead singer released an English album in the early 90's called "Call me Nightlife" and i managed to track down a sealed copy for £1.30!!!!!!!! Seriously, i never even dreamed i'd find something so rare, and at such a ridiculously low price @_@

Looking forward to this cd arriving :D

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Can't sleep

It's 6:50am, I can't sleep... gogo feeling crap day!