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Level Up, Zelda, and Laharl!

Whew. I haven't been on GS for a while now, but the need for some game tips has brought me back. ;) In other news, I leveled up. Hooray. Level 12. Go me.

For Christmas, I recieved Legend Of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass. I'm not a gigantic Zelda fan, but I played The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past for the GBA a few years ago and enjoyed it. I wish I hadn't sold it, it was one of the best games I've ever played for the GBA. But I digress. This Zelda game is also one of the best DS games I've played. The best thing the Zelda games have going for them, in my opinion, is that they walk the fine line between difficulty and intuitivity. (Intuitive-ness?) They aren't easy, but they're not super difficult. Everything makes sense after you think about it for a while. The only time I had any real problems was on the second-to-last island, I couldn't figure out how get through the labrynth. But with the help of a well-written walkthrough, I figured it out. My favorite part of the game were the awesome boss fights. They were all very original. A very good game.

So I after I beat Zelda, and was back on GS, I started hunting down my next game to play. I had been kind of dissapointed in Final Fantasy Tactics (Which I may come back to, I just don't really want to yet,) and Jeanne D'Ark, so, to revive my faith in the SRPG genre, I decided to pick up Disgaea: Afternoon Of Darkness. I had read about it's great story and humor, and also heard about it's great replayability/addictivity. I'm glad I picked it up. I'm only on Episode 4, and it's already got me hooked! It was a little confusing at the start, but I can definitely see why so many people like it.

I think I might write a review for both these games in a week or two... that'll keep me busy.

Song of the Day: "This Is All I Came To Do" by Dinosaur Jr.

Freeware Goodness!

Being mostly a handheld gamer, I usually don't buy PC games. But I love playing many of the freeware games I've found over the interweb. Here's a few of my favorites, for your free gaming lesiure.

Tripline: I downloaded this one a while ago and just started to get into it again. It's an engaging puzzle game where the point is to connect three of the same shapes in a row, without ever crossing your previous lines. (Hmm... It's easier than it sounds in the first few levels, but it has a steady difficulty curve.) If they ever made this for the DS, I would be hooked!

Spheres Of Chaos: Warning: this game will make your eyes hurt. But it is awesome anyway. It's like 'Asteriods'... on crack. Every enemy is at least six bright colors, and when you blow stuff up, the whole screen erupts in multicolored psychedellic explosions. That's my kinda game.

N: No kidding. The game is actually called N. This is my favorite game of the three. You play as a little awesome ninja that's hunting for gold. The physics are beautiful. The deaths are glorious. And it's all for little square pieces of gold.

Anyhoo, you should do yourself a favor and go download these games. You won't regret it. :D

Song of the Day: "Every Thug Needs A Lady" by Alkaline Trio

Oh, Kirby. We Love You.

So last night, I got kinda bored and got out some of my old GBA games. The first one I turned to was Mario Golf, and that was like, total nostalgia. (Okay, I know I'm only 15, but still! :P) I played it for a little while, but then needed something less... difficult. I'm not saying it's really hard or anything, but I was half-watching TV at the time, and I just didn't wanna focus.

So I picked up my old Kirby: Nightmare in Dreamland game. That was also one of my old standbys back in the day. I remember how I used to be able to beat the whole thing in about 2 hours, it's not that hard. But now, picking it up after a few years, it was more difficult than I remembered. But no less fun.

Anyhoo, I was kinda inspired by the game, so I started doodling... Here's the result. I like 'em. :P

Everyone loves Kirby!

Song of the Day: "Everything Is Alright" by Motion City Soundtrack

Kinda Old News. But News To Me. :P

Oh heavens. It seems that i've been away from GS for far too long. I have lots to catch up on.

For instance, I just found out that Sony is now allowing the PSN on your computer, to directly download onto your psp. So now I can buy those PS1 games for my PSP! The only thing is, almost none of the PS1 games are worth buying. Seriously, every single one is either an obscure title or already has a sequel on the PSP. The only one i'm kinda interested in is Syphon Filter. This makes me frustrated. Hopefully, they'll release a bunch of new PS1 games when firmware 4.0 comes out... *hint hint final fantasy, please?*

My birthday is on the 3rd of December, and the only game I asked for is the new Legend Of Zelda for DS. Any reccomendations for Christmas? I'm thinkin' maybe Picross. I'm into puzzle games like sudoku, so I heard it might be interesting.

Ha, I downloaded a pack of new themes for my psp off the interweb after finding out you could change the appearance of the XMB with the new firmware. I loaded them on my psp and just started trying them out. I've found my favorite, but one that really cracked me up was the beef-looking one. I found out later that it was supposed to be a cookie-looking theme. ;D i still think it looks like beef.

Song of the Day: "Aerodynamic" by Daft Punk

Help With Blog Text Editor!

I keep trying to post a blog, but i keep getting an error message, saying, "Your HTML is not well-formed - please check for unclosed tags." So what does that mean? What am I allowed to do in this blog text editor? What am I not allowed to do? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

New Headphones!

Six months. That's how long the headphones that came with my iPod lasted. I was so mad when they broke at the end of the school year. The speakers blew out and the cable near the jack wore away to bare wires... after only six months! It's not even like I was really rough on them. I keep the volume limit on my iPod at about half, because I don't really need it any louder.

Anyone with a PSP can tell you that the headphones that come with it are total crap without the controller that goes with it. Foolishly, when my iPod headphones broke, I just believed that I could use my PSP ones that I already had. Being summertime, I don't really listen to my iPod a lot, except with my iHome and iTrip. If I'm at the computer, i just play my music through iTunes. No problems. But whenever I have needed to listen on the go, I've been really annoyed. You see, the PSP headphones are too short to make it from my iPod in my pocket up to my ears! You can see from this picture that the wire runs from the jack, to the left ear, then to the right. Whose idiot brainchild was that?


So today, I decided to end this ridiculous fiasco once and for all - I finally bought new earphones! Huzzah! They're Philips. I bought them for $20 at Target. It comes with four other colors to change the outside of the earphones. But blue matches my iPod. :P

Level 9, Victory Road, and a Self-Portrait

Level 9! Finally! After that Level 8 Moderation Fiasco, I thought I'd never get here! :P Ikari Warrior? Does anyone know what that is? The only thing I can think of would be Shinji Ikari from Neon Genesis Evangelion... Hmmm...

Speaking of anime, I just recieved Fullmetal Alchemist, Disc 1 from Netflix a few days ago. I watched the 4 episodes, and i love it. Alphonse is my favorite character. :)

Today I was playing my Pokemon Diamond game, and when I got to Victory Road, I just groaned. I hate Victory Road. It's always my least favorite part of the Pokemon games. By the time I fight my 50th Golbat or Graveler or Steelix, I just wanna scream. X0 They should have put a bunch of new Pokemon in the Victory Road, just to spice it up a bit. Some new Pokemon, that you can't get anywhere else in the game. I mean, I've already beat 8 gym leaders, so I feel pretty good. I don't always feel like I gotta get to the Elite Four. So after dinkin' around Victory Road for a while, I just grabbed my Ruby game and started playing that. By a beautiful coincidence, I was just past Victory Road, and was ready to fight the Elite Four. So I spent today leveling up my Ruby Team, and I beat the Elite Four and Champion tonight. Mostly because of my Lv. 59 Blaziken. :P

A few days ago, I was just doodling, listening to my iPod, (The Vitamin String Quartet, of course!)and I drew this Self-Portrait, which I think turned out really good. I'm really proud of it. :D I drew it in pencil, then scanned it into my computer and used the spraypainter tool in MS Paint to color it. I think the effect is quite nice. Here it is, in the image section of my GS Profile. Please comment. Thanks! (And thank you to ColdstoneX3, for the previous comments and encouragement. :D You rock.)

Burnout: Legends, Augustana, and Ender's Game

Okay, so, if you haven't read my previous blog post about how I blatantly pirated music from my Public Library, I'm just gonna tell you something: I'm cheap. I love borrowed media. :D

I just rented Burnout Legends from Blockbuster on Sunday, and I love it. The physics aren't too realistic, but it is way too much fun to go 160 MPH on a crowded city street. It's actually really kinda scary, because I'm taking Driver's Ed right now, and a few days after renting this game, I went out in a car with the instructor. I've found out I've got a leadfoot. and a Type A personality. Does this have anything to do with this game? :P Burnout Legends is my first ever experience with "EA Trax", the music EA licences for it's games. Some of the music is really catchy, and I find myself wanting to find it on the internet somewhere to listen to. It just shows how much cooler some games could be with custom soundtracks.

***
My next example of media I managed to get without actually paying for it is in fact, another CD, but not from the library this time. I do have some respect for those little old librarians that are forever shushing me. :P I borrowed Augustana's new CD, "All The Stars And Boulevards", from a family friend that has some pretty good music tastes.
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I heard "Boston" (Track 4) on her son's iPod, and asked if I could borrow it, and she let me borrow it for a bit. So now it's on my iTunes, playing while I type this. I must say, this is a very good album. All of the songs are catchy and witty. My favorites so far are definitely "Hotel Roosevelt" and "Boston", the two singles from the album.

***
And finally, something from La Casa Del Libros. (Would that be right? Probably not. I've only finished Spanish 1, so I'm afraid even my Spangish is pretty bad.) "Ender's Game", by Orson Scott Card.
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This book is amazing. I picked it up from a tip by a friend, and, while it looked kinda kid-ish, I decided to give it a try. I'm glad I did - I couldn't put it down. I read it all in a day, and I think I'm actually gonna buy a copy. (*gasp!* Paying for something? :P) I strongly reccomend it. It's the story of a boy prodigy, and how he gets used by the government to achieve his own ends. If you've never read this book, now would be a good time. A few days ago, I was looking through a bookstore for what I thought was a sequel - "Ender's Shadow". But a friendly bookstore worker, who was clearly an 'Ender' enthusiast, informed me that that was actually more of a companion. "Ender's Game" is actually a quartet, and "Ender's Shadow" is a companion quartet! I was so happy when I heard that... not only one more book in the series, but 7!!! :D So I bought the next book in the Ender Quartet, "Speaker for the Dead". So now I'm reading that.

Oh yeah, and i just remembered. It's not La Casa Del Libros. Es un Biblioteca. I'm so proud of myself. :D

A Giant HUZZAH For Public Libraries!

So the other day I went to the library to get some books, and found that they had a massive amount of CDs that I had never noticed before. (They were next the large print... Who the heck goes over there?) I started browsing through them and I found some artists that I recognized, so I checked them out. Here's what I got:

David Gray's 'White Ladder'
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A while ago, I heard the second song on this CD, "Babylon" on my dad's Sirius Sattelite Radio. It's really awesome, you should check it out. Anyways, I bought that song off of iTunes, and have been listening to it, so when I saw this CD (for free, no less,) I knew I had to pick it up. I'm really liking it, it's a fusion between acoustic and folk and pop and rock. A very good CD.

Oasis's 'Don't Believe the Truth'
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I've heard of Oasis before I picked this up, but I've never actually HEARD them. Before listening to this CD, I didn't know what to expect, but was pleasantly surprised. All of the songs seem very original and catchy. So far, my favorites are "Turn Up the Sun" and "The Importance of Being Idle." I reccomend listening to those two, even if you don't buy them.

Beck's 'Sea Change'
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I must admit, that the first place I ever heard any of Beck's music was in an episode of 'Futurama.' I liked it well enough, and it was right about the same time that his newest CD, 'The Information' was coming out, so I was planning to look him up somewhere on the internet to hear some of his music. I just never got around to it. This CD is great because, like David Gray, Beck uses Acoustic sounds combined with things like large string sections. I like it, it's complex but very relaxing.

In other news, I got the pie emblem! HUZZAH! I heard they're temporary, though. *sad* Oh well. At least for a little while, I have more than two emblems!

Hooray it came! :D Plus some Evangelion-ness

Okay, so I haven't been on Gamespot for a while for one good reason:

FFVII came!

It took about a week longer than I expected, but it finally did. (It was from Noctalis, just for future refrence.) It probably took the regular amount of time that something from singapore takes, but still... Do I look like a patient person? Oh well. The main thing is, it's here. I'm totally diggin it, the story is fantastic. I just finished the part where Cloud is telling the party his flashback about Sephiroth in the first town on the minimap. I was totally surprised at where this is going... Sadly, the soundtrack, which i was really looking forward to, is missing, and in its place is a really lame collection of MIDIs. *sigh* I heard that the graphics are better than the PSX version, though, so I guess it's just a tradeoff. The battle system is really interesting. I like it... isn't it loosely based off of the battle system in Chrono Trigger? Hmmm...

During the summer, I've found I've mostly been doing the same things. FFVII, reading, (right now, Sabriel by Garth Nix which is awesome.) and playing the piano. Of course, as all gaming pianists know, the benchline for video game music is Piano Squall, a pianist who arranges and performs music from classic games. He even puts the sheet music up on his site FOR FREE! This guy RULES.Anyways, so far, I've learned his arrangements to "Vamo' alla Flamenco" from FFIX and "Korobeiniki" from Tetris. Both are A BLAST to play. Last week, I re-visited his site and saw he has the theme song to Neon Genesis Evangelion on there, "A Cruel Angel's Thesis". When I first looked at his list of arranged songs, I didn't really notice that one because I hadn't even heard of it before. Now I have, (and love it,) so I immediately fell in love with the arrangement PS did. I've been working on it for about a week, and I've almost mastered the first two sections.

Thank you, Piano Squall, for being freaking awesome.

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