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London Film & Comic Con 2015 Review

Howdy ladies and gentlemen, today I’m gonna give you my thoughts on the London Film & Comic Con took place on the past weekend. I went last year and had a pretty good time (read my review here), so I decided I to go again because there was people at the convention this year I just had to see. Unlike last year I’ll only be talking about the one day that I experience rather than the three-day experience that I had before. There’s a lot to get through so let’s get started!

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Now for those unaware, this convention is to do with films, TV, comics and video games. But the big focus is primarily on the special guests who attend, most people who go are normally coming to meet the celebrities who are there for talks,Β photo sessions and autographs signings. Otherwise you can buy a range of merchandise including, clothes, toys, anime and manga, DVDs, comics, artwork, posters and so on. In addition to that you can play video games new and old, see writers and artists of comic books or take pictures of cosplyers. So now I shall talk about my experience.

20150718_100558This was the scene from the entrance around 10am, yeah it was this full already.

My experience started out fine, I got the venue okay (even though I got one wrong train beforehand) and when I stepped outside the building I lined up in a long queue around 08:45am and for the first 20-30 minutes it was fine, but then the line stopped moving and there was nothing, for AGES. There was also a line across the road that was moving and yet we stuck at a stand still for at least an hour. My legs weren’t too jolly and I was getting a bit irritable, but EVENTUALLY the line moved and I got into the building just after 10am. So what did I get up to? Well I cruised around, talked to some fellow attendees. Got to see some cool toys, t-shirts and art. I even got to meet up with an old friend at the convention who I’d met at last year’s convention too. And of course I got to take some pictures of cosplayers but I didn’t do nearly as many as I would have liked because it was too crowded and I constantly had to be somewhere.

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But I spent most of my day in queues, just moving from one to the other especially after 2pm. The only downtime I got was when I went upstairs and played in the video game section, while it was significantly smaller than last year’s it still had the one game that mattered and that was Super Smash Bros. Melee and you had to get stuck in. Just like last year I got into my groove real quick and started schooling some kids. I felt kind of bad because two of them weren’t that familiar with Melee’s game mechanics, one of them didn’t know how to do recovery attacks! I felt terrible and had to give them pointers. Out of the three there was one kid who was pretty good with Kirby. That being said I still kicked all of their asses on multiple occasions as Link, Donkey Kong and Captain Falcon to name a few. At one point the youngest kid got really pissed off and really wanted me dead shouting “I hate Donkey Kong!”, “Let’s all team up and kill him!” And when he did kill me on the odd occasion he got so happy like “Oh yeah, I killed you! I’m happy when I kill you!” I was like damn, this kid has issues. But it wasn’t like I was going to play badly, I’ll never pull my punches especially when it comes to Smash Bros. and even played with characters I’m bad with like Yoshi, Zelda/Sheik and Marth and I still laid waste to my enemies, besides one sudden death match which I won, every other match was a straight win. After around 30-40 minutes I pulled out to give other people a chance to play haha.

20150718_120702Once again I came to Smash Bros. Melee and just owned people.

But the best part was meeting the celebrities. Firstly I got to meet Erin Cahill who played Jen in Power Rangers Time Force. Ever since 2001 she’s been my favourite Pink Ranger because she was tough, more fleshed out and was just as much of a main character as Wes (Red Ranger) was. And Cahill played the part so well and I’d been dying to get to meet her in the flesh, and on the weekend I got to and I was beyond happy. I was basically fangirling in front of her saying how nice it was to meet her and how I’ve waited so long, but she was so nice, warm and receptive to my admiration. Erin said she liked my smile and said that it was fans like me that make her like conventions like this. I felt so honoured to be in her presence and she hugged me twice. I was pretty much in the best mood ever and it wasn’t even midday yet. πŸ˜›

20150720_154649Erin was so cool!

Then after that I got to meet Jason David Frank, legendary Green and White Ranger from Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers (a good few other PR series’). Meeting him was a childhood dream, I’ve had a mad appreciated this guy for years and in the last few years where he’s appeared in Super Power Beat Down and at all these conventions through social media has only made me love him more, but seeing him, shaking his hand and getting actual photo with him has been the most surreal experience ever, possibly more so than Stan Lee (with Stan I mentally prepared for it, but this was different). He was so cool, enthusiastic and just genuine. πŸ˜€

me-and-JDFI got to meet one of my favourite actors from childhood. JDF is such a legend and is just as amazing in person! πŸ˜€

I also got a photo with the awesomeness that is Bill Paxton! I knew I had to see him in person after loving him in Twister, Aliens and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and he was such gentlemen. So funny and kind, I went over to him and he asked me how I was, I said “I’m fine, haha hail Hydra.” He laughed, we took the picture and he said “Haha, hail Hydra indeed.” Don. That was singlehandedly my favourite photo session moment. πŸ™‚ But then I got to meet Sigourney Weaver, she was one of the main reason for attending the convention. I mean when else am I going to meet Ellen Ripley or Dana/Zuul in the flesh? Weaver’s an amazing actress and I was so giddy to meet her, after I took my picture she asked me “Are you having fun?” and I was like “Yeah!” So happy! πŸ˜€

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There were people I didn’t get to see/meet and stuff I never got around to doing. I never got to see Hayley Atwell (who I didn’t even know was attending until the morning I arrived, so gutted), I never got to see Michael J. Fox or Christopher Lloyd (super gutted especially about Lloyd) and Jason Faunt (Wes/red ranger from Time Force) even though I was right next to him on a few occasions I didn’t talk to him because I was short for time. I also didn’t get to talk to any of the artists at their stands and this time round I never got to sit down and see any talks at all. See, that’s how busy things got haha.

The thing about LFCC is that it is a pretty massive undertaking, the event is huge with A LOT to see and do, and if you’re not prepared you can be overwhelmed by the amount of chaos going on. There’s so many people, many places to go, so much to buy and SO MUCH SCHEDULING TO DO if you’re going after the celebrity signings and photo shoots. I had a lot of fun this year, but I was definitely done after my final photo shoot because all of the queuing I’d been doing. I’m not sure how I managed all three days last year, but I think that may have been because of the friends I was with and the fact that it was my first time. I will say that the venue was pretty big and cool but getting around proved to be quite troublesome and tedious because of the elevators that were always jam-packed and the stairwells that were full of constantly shifting people. And, just like last year, the organisation when it came to queueing not only to get inside the venue but also for the photo sessions was messy. While it was slighty better than last year, I still felt like the people who worked there just going with the flow and didn’t always have the situation under control.

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In conclusion my second year at London Film & Comic Con was frigging mint. Besides all the queuing, unorganised waiting areas and super sweaty movements while getting from point A to point B, I had a hell of a good time. I got to see so many famous faces, live out some of my childhood dreams and get my game on with Smash Bros. Melee. I left this event with such a good feeling and lovely memories. Something tells me I’ll probably be back again next year if I’m available.

So if you attended London Film & Comic Con this year what did you think? Did you go for one day or the full weekend? And if you didn’t go would you consider going next year? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to leave them below and I’ll see ya on the next review. Laters! πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on July 20, 2015 in Films, Media, Reviews, Television, Video Games

 

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London Film & Comic Con 2014 Review

Howdy ladies and gentlemen, today I’m gonna give you my thoughts on the London Film & Comic Con took place on the weekend just past. So yeah I’ve been travelling to and from London over the last three days going to convention and it has been one hell of an experience. There’s been a lot of stuff going down recently and now I have to try and recall everything that I saw. Here goes nothing. πŸ˜›

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Now for those not in the know, this convention was all about films, TV, comics and video games. But it was primarily about the special guests who attended, most people who were going were there to meet the celebrities who were there for talks,Β photo sessions and doing autographs too. Otherwise you could buy a range of merchandise including, clothes, toys, anime and manga, DVDs, comics, artwork, posters and so on. In addition to that you could also play video games new and old, see the writers and artists in the comic book area or took pictures of the many cosplyers hanging around. So Now I shall talk about my experience day by day.

Friday

On day one I meet up with my friends, we queued for just around an hours around the back of the building before we got inside and I scoped the area to see where everything was. There was a lot of stalls with merchandise, many areas for actors doing autograph signings and loads of people in cosplay walking all over the place. So Friday was just a short session, the convention started at 6.30pm and only lasted for a few hours and was pretty much a taster of things to come over the next two days. It was primarily a day two get your stuff signed or do your photo sessions with celebs or just buy your tickets for events you couldn’t get online beforehand. There was a lot of lines and it was pretty crazy how far they stretched even though it was Friday, not one of the main weekend days. But then at the same time considering who was attending and how big the event has become over the years I am not surprised about people and their commitment to coming so early and in their massive numbers.

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But the highlight of my day was when I met and got a picture with the legend that is Stan Lee, yes THE Stan Lee. I waited in line to have my picture with him for around I think an hour and a half, but then I finally got to take the picture with him and I can say it was one of the most surreal moments ever.

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This was pretty much the highlight of the day and my life. I unfortunately didn’t get to talk to him because we were being hurried along by the staff, but in all honesty I could say anything because I was awe-struck. My heart couldn’t stop racing after I got my picture with Stan. To meet him has been one of my life goals since I was around 7 or 8 years old, but never did I think I would ever get to live my dream so early in my life.

Saturday

Enter day two of my time at the LFCC and since I had couldn’t my photo with Stan Lee the day before and didn’t have any money for autographs, photo sessions or to buy any merchandise, it was my day to relax, take pictures and explore. I entered the main building and there really wasn’t much for me to do so I was kind of bored, but then I remembered that there were some talks going on, I then went to one of the stage areas, but I got told that the stage area I was looking for was in another building. So then I went next door to the other building and found a whole other section of the convention that I didn’t even know was there. Here in Earl’s Court 1 was the comic book area, the ‘Super Stage’ and the video game section too, the stuff I had heard about online, but was poorly advertised at the convention itself. Had I not asked about this second stage area from the staff, I don’t think I would have found this place at all.

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Anyway I had the best time ever in this second building. I got to watch two talks, the first was a fun and insightful talk on the Power Rangers series which featured David Yost (Mighty Morphin’ Blue Ranger), Bulk and Skull (Paul Schrier and Jason Narvy) and Cerina Vincent (Lost Galaxy Yellow Ranger). Then there was the talk on Sherlock which featured Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat and Sue Vertue talking about the creative process behind the show, its popularity and success and how they should ‘Watch Season 4’ for all their answers relating to the future of the show and characters. And after that there was the cosplay masquerade where there were a lot of fancy cosplayers showing off their costumes, but the most surprising part was when one cosplay couple came as Finn and Princess Bubblegum from Adventure Time and the guy actually proposed to his girlfriend in front of everyone and she totally said yes! It was the most surprising and wonderful thing I had ever seen. πŸ™‚ I also got to talk to some great comic book artists and illustrators who were really cool, gave me some awesome advice and had just had a general chin-wag with.

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Outside of that I was just playing video games all day! I had a go at all the retro arcade machines I could get a hold of which included Pac-Man, Tron, Dig Dug, Donkey Kong, Defender, Frogger, Mario Bros. and some Sega driving game. I think it is fair to say that I pretty much sucked at a lot of those games as I lost a lot, that being said I wasn’t bad at Dig Dug, Tron and Defender. Another gripe I do have with those machines is that the arcade sticks or buttons were definitely old as some were stiff and unresponsive which made precision a tough thing to pull off. I tried out Super Mario Kart which was a lot harder and slippery than I remember and play Star Wars Episode V: Return of the Jedi on Super Nintendo and it was frigging hard as hell. But where I found my jam was with Super Smash Bros. Melee. Man that was such a good time, I got to play a little more competitively and while I did get my ass handed to my twice by this really good guy, I pretty much murdered people in my other two matches which felt great. I was doing so well that people who came over were commenting on how good I was and the other players formed a temporary alliance to take me out, but they still failed! I was so beast! XD

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Sunday

So on the final day I came down a little later in the day and just hanged around in the comic book and video game sections again because there was nothing for me in the other place, that and it was super packed and sweaty lol. Again I got some really cool advice from artists and illustrators and then went back to the gaming section for some fun. I played some Tron and Dig Dug again, also tried this super hard Star Wars game on NES and it was pretty much impossible. Once again I was totally in the thick of it when it came to Smash Bros and besides one match when I went up against some really hardcore guy who played as Mario, I pretty much murdered everyone as Captain Falcon all over again. Spectators loved me and the other players once again hated me and wanted me dead, but I still killed them. I felt so badass. πŸ˜€

I pretty much left around 5pm as I had another event to attend to later on but I ended the day with a great level of satisfaction knowing that my time had been well spent at this convention. πŸ™‚

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In conclusion London Film & Comic Con was one of the best three-day weekends I’ve experienced in a while. While it was a tad unorganized and over-crowded at times, I can’t deny that I had a kick ass time. I met some wonderful artists, played loads of video games, saw a good few famous people and met Stan Lee, I’d say it was a pretty awesome convention and I’m definitely interested in returning and trying out a few others across the UK in the future.

So what do you think of London Film & Comic Con? If you went what did you think and if you didn’t go would you consider going next year? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to leave them below and I’ll see ya on the next review.

 
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Posted by on July 14, 2014 in Films, Media, Reviews, Television, Video Games

 

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Random Blog 12: Me & My Love For Super Smash Brothers!

Good day to you ladies and gentlemen, it’s time for Random Blog entry. And today I’m gonna talk about something that I have a serious amount of love for and because of recent events I just have to talk about it. Today I’ll be giving you a brief history of my experience of the Super Smash Bros. series.

The Games That Have Come Out So Far

Super Smash Bros. (1999)

Euro Cover Art For Super Smash Bros. N64

Ah yes the game that started it all. What we have here is a fighting game unlike any other. Where most fighting games were mainly two-on-two like in Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat and Tekken, this was a 4-player all-out assault. In SSB you took several famous Nintendo character from their key franchises and made them duke it out in 4-player mayhem. The concept was unique at the time because there wasn’t really many, if any other companies doing the same thing at the time. Players could pick from 12 characters (8 to begin with and 4 more unlockable ones), with 9 stages to pick from and you could either play the solo ‘Classic’ mode or mess around with friends in multiplayer time or stock battles. Each character had a unique moveset but in addition to that you could use items that could heal or damage you or your opponents, and then there were some stages had hazards that had to avoid too. The game was madness, but it was a critical and commercial success and from here the series could only go onwards and upwards.

Super Smash Bros. Melee (2001)

Super_Smash_Bros._Melee_-_North_American_BoxartIf SSB for N64 was the starter in a three-course meal that Super Smash Bros. Melee for GameCube was the main course. Melee came out and basically blew everyone’s expectations. It dwarfed the original game and improved everything. Going into a bit more depth about the features of the game, you had a character roster of 25 which introduced even more characters from established franchises while introducing some new faces (Bowser, Ganondorf, Mewtwo, Ice Climbers and Mr. Game & Watch among others), there were around three times the amount of stages to select and the combat, oh the combat, it was SO good. In Melee combat was faster, tighter and featured even more moves like directional throwing, one additional special attack, charged smash attacks, air dodging and so much more. Besides the famous multiplayer mode which even had a tournament mode, the solo mode had a Classic mode reminiscent of the orignal game and a new Adventure mode where you fighting characters, but also venturing through large worlds, racing against time and getting to the final boss that changed depending on the difficulty chosen at the beginning. And lastly the presentation for the game was SO good, straight from the gorgeous introduction with the orchestrated music and amazing pre-rendered CG cut-scenes, it was amazing. While the game isn’t as visually stunning as say Metroid Prime, F-Zero GX or LOZ: Wind Waker, I do believe it gave us the most detailed version of these characters at the point in time, and the music is some of favourite remixes and original material from any game ever thanks to the new orchestral sound.

Melee is one of the best GameCube games for a reason, it was and still is til this day one of the best multiplayer experiences that Nintendo have ever given us gamers. This was the game that most GameCube owners had in their collection either as first purchase or obtained a little while after its original release.

Super Smash Bros. Brawl (2008)

Super_Smash_Bros._Brawl_-_North_American_BoxartThis game took everything about the last game expanded things by 100! I don’t think it is an exaggeration to say that everything got a dramatic increase in scope and detail. When it comes to overall including the modes you got in Melee, you had new solo mode, the Subspace Emissary which was an upgraded version of Adventure mode from the last game, there was also sticker and CD collecting introduced, and most importantly there was online play for the first time. It terms of combat the game was changed a bit with some upgrades to combat and item use, however things were slowed down and simplified a bit for casual players. The character roster was boosted from 25 to 35 (39 if you count Sheik, Zero Suit Samus and the Pokemon Trainer’s Pokemon as separate characters) and we got some fighters replaced and some altogether new fighters, but the most interesting of these was the inclusion of Metal Gear Solid’s Solid Snake and long-awaited arrival of Sega’s mascot, Sonic the Hedgehog.

The hype for this game was ridiculous, ever since E3 2006 and I don’t think I have seen that kind of hype and excitement for a game in since besides possibly the wait for GTA V or Pokemon X & Y. I think the game delivered on the hype for the most part with most fans saying that the game was the best entry in the series and it was also one of the highest selling Wii games too.

The only thing this intro is missing an epic announcer saying the name of the game… That and original cut-scenes. πŸ˜›

How This Series Affected Me

To say that I love the Smash Bros. series would be an understatement, I ADORE this series. Besides the days when I played GoldenEye, Perfect Dark and the Mario Kart and Party games, this game series would be the one that provided me with my favourite multiplayer experiences. There is something so satisfying about taking several Nintendo characters and pitting them up against each other in combat. It is an adrenaline-fueled, chaotic and fun kind of experience that is hard to describe unless you’ve played it for yourself. Ever since I started with this game series around the year 2000 or 2001 I’ve been hooked. It was like the Avengers crossover of Nintendo video games (sure the Capcom Vs. series had already did a few crossover fighting games, but this was a different kind of beast altogether). Melee pretty much changed my life, I was obsessed and I was playing that game from the age of 12 til about 18. By the time Brawl came out I had blown up from all the nerdgasms I’d been doing, while I did miss the faster, more technical combat of Melee, Brawl had done so much more right and had online. Only problem was that I never played Brawl as long as Melee, in fact around two years in I sort of left it alone as I went into my hazy phase with video games. That being said, it is pretty much the only Wii game I go back to whenever I dust the old console off because it’s the only one I like that much.

The Smash Bros. series is now one that I adore just as much or possibly more than the Sonic series and that’s saying a lot coming from me. This series has yet to wrong me, it just delivers on the fun and entertainment factor by like 10,000! Just seeing the games, listening to the music or playing it just gives me an immense sense of satisfaction that not many other gaming franchises can.

The Future

super-smash-bros-wii-u-and-3ds-logoAnd now of course we have Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS coming out later on this year. To say that I’m hyped for this new entry in this series would be an understatement.

When this game was announced at E3 2011 I went mad with speculation just trying to think about how this game would turn out. But it wasn’t until E3 2013 when we got to the first look at the new game and holy crap it was a surprise and a half. The amazing trailer showed off Smash Bros. coming to the Wii U in glorious HD but also on the 3DS too. It was beautiful sight, but the real revelation was seeing Mega Man added as a fighter. I think the internet blew up with all the gaming nerds freaking out. And since then game director Masahiro Sakurai has been giving us fans on the game daily updates since then updating us on characters, stages, move-sets, items and so on, it has been a great time to be Nintendo nerd.

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These are the character-specific posters for the new combatants all complete with different styles.

At this current point in time we have 29 characters announced, details on the online modes, several stages shown for both the Wii U and 3DS versions and then of course there’s the release dates with the 3DS version coming out in the summer and the Wii U version coming out in the winter. Right now there’s a been a lot of information at this point in time, however there’s still a lot of time before the games are released, so I am really interested to see what information is released at E3 this year.

Here’s a beast trailer compilation:

So yeah those are my thoughts on the Super Smash Bros. series, it is a series that I can’t see my life without. It is chaotic, unique and a hell of a lot of fun. My excitement for the new games in this series have me freaking out, I have watched all of the footage for the game over and over and I am going out of my mind just trying to be patient. All I can say if you haven’t experienced this game series yet, try out one of the games I highlighted or buy the new games when they come out because the world of Smash Bros. is one of joy that no gamer should be without. πŸ™‚

 
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Posted by on April 27, 2014 in Life, Media, Video Games

 

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