Posted in What Do We Know?

Stormblood: What Do We Know?

30208199352_8cc78e2bed_zWarriors of Light, take note.

In my last ramble, Falling for fantasy, I mentioned an upcoming expansion for FF14 called Stormblood, but I didn’t go into any detail about it. The reason for that was because I thought that it needed a separate ramble dedicated to it so here it is!

Stormblood is the second expansion for FF14 which was announced back in October of last year. It is due for release on the 20th of June.

So, what does this expansion have in store?

Firstly, the level cap will increase from 60 to 70 and the inventory will be expanded. There are also new locations such as Gyr Abania, the Ruby Sea, Yanxia, and the Azim Steppe.

On top of that, Red Mage and Samurai will become playable classes.

New additions include new primals and beastmen, a new 8-man raid, the ability to swim and dive, new dungeons, an alliance raid and a new residential district called Shirogane.

redThere are also going to be several changes to the battle system. For example, cross-class skills will no longer be in the game and will be replaced with “role actions” with five different types. (Tank, Healer, Melee DPS, Ranged DPS, Caster). Since cross-class skills have been removed the requirements for unlocking jobs will be altered.

PVP is also getting an upgrade. Now any job over level 30 can participate and PVP actions will now be determined by role, instead of by job.

While I am excited about Stormblood, I haven’t completed A Realm Reborn yet, let alone Heavensward so I won’t be preordering it anytime soon until I have caught up with my friends.

I know that with the release of Stormblood you can buy potions to catch up, but that feels wrong to me so I will make progress in the game the old fashioned way.

Posted in Opinion Corner

Falling for fantasy

2bdf6825a39f013d4c779ec690aba404Back in February of last year, I talked about Final Fantasy 14 and how I had fallen head over heals for it. However, due to college I had to stop playing it for a while and I didn’t start playing it again until recently, and that was due to my best friend poking and prodding me to catch up as the latest expansion Stormblood is coming out next month.

I finally gave in and jumped back into Eorzea last week, and while I am still a tad rusty, I have fallen in love with this game again. I had almost forgotten how much fun it was and how cute my character was.

I am rather ashamed to admit this, but FF14 was the first Final Fantasy game I ever played. Back in 2016, I had a passing knowledge of the franchise but that was as far as I went into it. Since then, I have played the original FF7 to see what the fuss was all about and the latest game in the series, FF15. 

FF15 prides itself on being a game for both long-time fans and newcomers alike. No, really, It says that every time you start up the game. As someone who isn’t exactly a newcomer yet, I am certainly not a long time fan, I would have to agree with their claim.

kawaiiTo be honest, FF15 threw me for a loop when I started playing but the charm of the game won me over. I fell in love with the characters, particularly Prompto, Ignis and Cindy. That being said, it was the Chocobos that stole my heart.

Chocobos are my favourite element of the Final Fantasy games. I realise that might sound really dumb but hear me out. They are both adorable and useful, not to mention loyal. They can even heal you when you get to a high enough level in FF14. While playing FF15 (mild spoiler incoming) you are given the choice to go straight to Lestallum to continue the story or go to the Chocobo Post. Guess which one I picked?

Yes, there has been a horrific event and the fate of my kingdom rests on my shoulders, but Chocobos! This is why I should never be trusted with power and responsibility, I would abandon it all for anything cute.

final-fantasy-15-1After playing these three games, I wish I had played the other games in the series sooner. So I want to ask you a few questions regarding this series, which of the games should I play? Which ones hold up and which one is your favourite? Please let me know.

Posted in Opinion Corner

Happy Birthday, Overwatch!

overwatch-anniversaryTime flies when you are having fun, or when you are screaming at your team to get on the payload, same difference when you are playing Overwatch.

Jokes aside, I can’t believe that it has been a year since Overwatch made its debut. In just a year this game gained a massive following and intense fandom.

I said this before, but I avoided the game up until November (why? Well, that is another story so if you want to know here you go) which I seriously regret as this is now one of my favourite games. On top of this, I missed out on several events.

No point in dwelling on the past, let’s look at what we have to look forward to in just a few days time.

tumblr_oq6ikuxqAo1qaywrho1_400.gifFirstly, the skins. I suspect this might be an unpopular opinion, but I am a little disappointed by the new skins.  I really like the Soldier 76 one but I don’t have any feelings towards the other three. I hope there are more skins on offer when the event rolls around.

In terms of emotes, I want them now, they are so cute! Particularly Sombra’s. Speaking of Sombra, I am looking forward to playing in the new maps but the one that caught my eye was Sombra’s hideout.

We have also had a taste of some of the voice lines, and while I like them all my favourite has to be Soldier 76’s “I’m not your father” line. I burst out laughing when I heard it.

In case you aren’t active in the fandom, there is a popular portrayal going around of 76 being a father figure to the younger characters which has paved the way for some adorable fanart and some adult fanart.

Word of warning, never google Overwatch without the safe search on.

fuckthewifiWith one little voice line, Jeff and the Overwatch team show that they are keeping up with the fandom, but this isn’t the first time they have done this. Jeff has stated before that he likes seeing all the different interpretations of the characters. Though apparently Solider 76 isn’t a fan of the fandom’s interpretation.

Despite starting off on the wrong foot, I have fallen head over heals for Overwatch. While my heart still belongs to Team Fortress Two, I think we can all agree that Overwatch has certainly made an impact in the gaming community and truly deserves the praise it has received.

Happy First Birthday, heroes! I’m looking forward to what you will bring in the future.

If you haven’t played Overwatch yet there is a free weekend taster coming up next week, so I recommend giving it a shot. Seriously, what are you waiting for?


Posted in Feature

Geralt is coming to Netflix

tumblr_nokjfiXSxD1skp6koo1_500Just as I was beginning to calm down from the news about the Deadpool and Judge Dredd shows, the news broke about the latest adaptation Netflix is working on.

A live action series of The Witcher Saga.

Thank you, Netflix!

From what I can gleam, the show will follow the book series that the games are based on rather than the games themselves, but I am not complaining. In fact, this gives me an excuse to read the books.

On top of that, the writer of the original series, Andrzej Sapkowski, will be involved in the series as a creative consultant.

Sapkowski has gone on the record to say; “I’m thrilled that Netflix will be doing an adaptation of my stories, staying true to the source material and the themes that I have spent over 30 years writing. I’m excited about our efforts together, as well as the team assembled to shepherd these characters to life.”

6304f6b942d6419923f283b57942d53fI don’t know about you, but I have high hopes for this show. Especially since the original creator seems to be heavily involved.

Apparently, the original plan was to make a live action movie, but I think a series is the best way to explore the immersive world and the detailed lore of The Witcher.

Even though the news broke just last night, I am desperate for more information. When Will it be out? What is the budget? Who will play Geralt?

I will admit, I am finding it hard to picture a known actor who could play the legendary Witcher. I hope they go with new talent instead of using famous actors.

While actors have not been named yet, we do know that Sean Daniel (1999’s “The Mummy“) and Jason Brown (2017’s “The Mummy“) will be executive producers.

Personally, I am quite optimistic about this adaptation and I can’t wait to see it. If done right this could be an amazing fantasy show with plenty of action and charm. Cross your fingers, everyone!

Posted in Feature

Deadpool and Dredd TV Shows Announced

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My reaction

Earlier this week, we were informed of not one but two upcoming comic book shows, an animated Deadpool show (which has yet to be named) and Judge Dredd: Mega-City One.

Man, I am so excited!

Before I start fangirling, let’s compare notes and see just how much we know about these shows.

Well, not a lot. That isn’t surprising since the news only broke a few days ago, but both FX TV (Deadpool) and Rebellion (Dredd) are keeping their cards close to their chests. Both parties haven’t even released information about the casts.

Let’s start with the animated Deadpool series, which is the one I’m looking forward to the most. Right off the bat, I am glad that the series will be animated. Considering the popularity of adult cartoons like Rick and Morty, Archer and Bob’s Burgers now is definitely the time for a Deadpool cartoon to shine.

Brothers Donald Glover and Stephen Glover have been named as showrunners, executive producers and writers. We have been told that the show will have 10 episodes and it will be released next year, although we have no particular date.

dredd_95998229_mc1_posterJudge Dredd: Mega-City One, on the other hand, will be a live action show filmed in the UK. Apparently, the show is already in the works but there has been no word as to who will play the lawman of the future.

There are four who have been named as executive producers for Judge Dredd: Mega-City One; IM Global Television president Mark Stern, IM Global Television CEO Stuart Ford and the brother duo team behind Rebellion Jason and Chris Kingsley.

I’m seeing a pattern here.

The Kingsley’s have worked with Ford before, the three were executive producers of the 2012 Dredd film. On top of that, from the interviews I have read Stern is a big fan of both the live action films and the comic series.

I have to say, this sounds like they have assembled the dream team for Judge Dredd: Mega-City One. I have high expectations for this show, don’t let me down, fellas!

Z4z209W.gifWhile I love movies as much as the next guy, I prefer TV shows as by design there is more time available for character and story development, this helps to create a far more interesting story and immersive world. Judge Dredd: Mega-City One, in particular, will benefit from this.

Overall, I am looking forward to hearing more details about these shows, who are going to play the leads? When are they going to be released? Are they going to be on Netflix?

Time will tell.


Posted in Feature

The Darkest King Interview

XBtKZRKHFor many, to write and publish a comic book would be a dream come true. For those who are willing to work hard and take risks, that dream can become a reality. Just ask Tony Scott Astley.

What is your name and the name of your comic?

My name is Tony Scott Astley and I’m the writer of The Darkest King.

What is The Darkest King about?

The comic pits two larger-than-life brothers, the Kings, against one another as they both follow their own quest for power – one seeks external power, while the other faces the struggle within. The younger brother attempts to take back the crime-ridden fictional city, Coldwood, from the crime lords, namely the ring-leader, Mr X, through dirty politics. The elder fights to become master of himself in an internal battle that plays out on the streets of the city, violent vigilante style.

Which brother is The Darkest King? This question is presented throughout the story. With complicated pasts and a reality that forces even the most honourable of characters to act in shades of grey, fans will have to make their own judgement by reading the full novel.

What difficulties have you faced while creating your comic?

smokeHaving to pay for everything upfront was a real stress and strain. No publisher will hire a writer and they rarely hire illustrators, so you have to find and put together your creative team, pay the illustrators and then present your full comic to publishers and even then, there’s no guarantee you’ll get a publishing deal. As for making the comics themselves, everything has run really smoothly. I work with an amazing illustrator and have a good, rising publisher who prints amazing comics.

What part of the comic creating process do you enjoy the most?

The most enjoyable is definitely flushing out my ideas on my white/cork board. Brainstorming, planning and writing ideas down really gives you an amazing feeling because you feel the story coming together.

If you had to pick, are you a DC fan or Marvel fan?

Oh, I love them both, but my heart is with DC. My favourite hero is Batman. On the whole, I love DC more due to its darker tones in their stories. Team DC all the way. Ha

Who or what was your inspiration for your comic?

My inspiration for any and every story I write is a simple quote from Toni Morrison “If there is a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, you must be the one to write it.”

kingDo you have any advice for those out there who want to get involved in making comics?

I didn’t dive straight in. I did months and months of research before I even wrote my story as a comic. Read comics, research them and how to write them. Don’t rush getting your creative team together, it’s going to take time, but the end result will be worth it. Also, if you believe in your comic and yourself, then go out and do it because with a comic it is solely your vision and no one can take that away from you.

Any closing remarks?

Keep your dreams alive. Persistence and Patience is the pain to prevail.

The Darkest King issues one and two are available online here, if you enjoy Film noir stories then I highly recommend you read The Darkest King. It’s a bloody good read.

Posted in Opinion Corner

Free Comic Book Day 2017

187696_1039353_14Yesterday was Free Comic Book Day also known as the best day of the year. This year there was 50 free comics handed out including manga.

I have been attending Free Comic Book Day events for the past three years.

In previous years, I would hang around town for a bit after grabbing my free goodies, but not this year. Mainly because I was too tired and I wanted to enjoy the decent weather at home while it lasted.

This year my quest for comics began at the ungodly hour of half past five. Having packed my kindle, water and snacks the night before so I thought I was properly prepared for the day. I only had an hour before my train arrived at the station.

I arrived at the growing queue at Forbidden Planet Glasgow around seven, I was number 12 when I took my spot in the line so I hoped I would I manage to pick up one of the limited Pop figures.

The kindle turned out to be unnecessary as I ended up having a good chat with fellow comic book fanatics as we waited.

18221762_704103523105220_6299482683022410860_nAfter waiting for an hour and finally being allowed into the store, I emerged the proud owner of a free Gold Iron Fist Funko figure. I also managed to pick up the second volume of the KonoSuba light novel for 20% off. Needless to say, I’m quite chuffed.

Since only five customers were let in at a time, I was in the third group to enter. This may be my third year, but the sight of free comics will never be less than beautiful.

By the time I left the store the queue stretched from the door up past several shops. I was glad I got in when I did.

In terms of this years line up of comics, I was pretty impressed. My personal favourite was Buffy: The High School Years, and this is coming from someone who still hasn’t got around to watching Buffy. It’s on my Netflix list, I will watch it soon I promise! In fact, Buffy: The High School Years has encouraged me to not only read the comic line but watch the show. 

stl037303-1493676590475_1280wAll-New Guardians of the Galaxy and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were tied at a close second. I like the art style of All-New Guardians of the Galaxy and I am interested in where the storyline will go.

As for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, I love almost everything in the franchise, minus the Michal Bay films, so it was guaranteed that I would enjoy this year’s free comic.

All in all, I would have to say that this was a great Free Comic Book Day, and I can’t wait for the next on in 2018!