It has been a common practice for Hollywood to turn to books for their next great movie project in the last few years. For every Harry Potter or Hunger Games that gets chosen to go from page to screen, you have to wonder if studios really can’t come up with their own ideas without falling back on authors, who are creating and publishing books daily, as their main source for an original story. Sometimes, the books’ movie counterparts wind up being a critical success at the box office, or they flop spectacularly. There’s really no magic formula to predict which adaptation will get a favorable response from audiences. It’s really the luck of the draw. Whether you’re for or against books being turned into films, one good thing to come out of Hollywood’s interest in the written word come to life is getting those same audience members to pick up and read the book the movie is based on, if they haven’t already.
We’re nearly two months done with the year 2018 and it has me thinking about video games lately. Many video games sites and blogs often discuss which upcoming games in the new year they’re most excited to see and play across all platforms. It’s a mixed bag of genres, style, and gameplay that will appeal to just about any personal gaming tastes. Or at the very least put it on a gamer’s watch list if they’re on the fence deciding to purchase it on Day 1. When taking stock of the titles coming for the current year we’re in, I always find myself counting less games on my hand of what I’ll immediately purchase.
Last year I picked up Blizzard Entertainment’s Overwatch and joined the millions of people who fell in love with this widely popular online multiplayer game. It became the game to play with my friend whenever we had our gaming sessions every other weekend. With currently 26 characters to choose from, Moira being the newest and latest character to join the roster, players are bound to find one or two they really enjoy playing as. After spending more time playing the game and almost trying every single character available, I can confidently say I have found the ones I’ll gravitate towards each and every time.
The year 2000 concluded the story of ten-year-old Sakura Kinomoto’s journey to capture the magical and mysterious Clow Cards and seal them back in the book she opened in her basement with the guardian of the cards Cerberus (Kero) guiding her along the way. CLAMP’s delightful Cardcaptor Sakura manga, from which the anime is based on, has enchanted fans all over since its release in 1996. Now almost 18 years later, CLAMP reopens the Clow Book once more in their new manga series Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card with a brand new anime to naturally go with it.
Final Fantasy XV had a jam packed 2017 for DLC. Despite the game’s initial 2016 release, newer content is still being created and released even after players have ended their journey with Noctis and his crew. The most anticipated DLC fans of the game have been looking forward to are the companion episodes that dug deeper into key moments in the game that affected Noctis’ friends solely: Gladiolus, Prompto, and Ignis. With all three episodes now available to download and play, I review and rank each DLC episode dedicated to these lovable bros.
It has been quite a year for a lot of us and our reaction to it will vary for many of us based on our own personal experiences. I can’t say 2017 has always been smooth sailing for me. Aside from the worldwide emotional roller coaster we’re all collectively experiencing together, there have been my own personal bumps and struggles I endured at the start of 2017. I’m grateful for the turnaround I experienced just before the year ends and I’m in no way taking it for granted. You really do appreciate things more when you have to fight, struggle, and work your way through everything you do. Now that Christmas is behind me and New Year’s is not too faraway, a number of things are already coming up before I wave 2017 goodbye and embrace 2018.
Christmas is just a week away and everyone will be cranking up their favorite holiday songs, whether it’s a selection from a personal playlist or a radio station that has been playing non-stop Christmas music since the day after Thanksgiving. There’s always the usual favorites and classics, like Jingle Bell Rock or Carol of the Bells that will play without fail every single year. But then you have those other Christmas songs that don’t play as much on the radio or are original, new releases from today’s hottest artists that don’t get any air time at all. With Christmas almost here, I’ve compiled a list of my favorite songs that I wish played more often than they actually are. I mean, there’s only so many different renditions of Santa Baby or It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year you can listen to before it gets just the tiniest bit played out.
The extra content in Square Enix’s Final Fantasy XV is the gift that keeps on giving. The developers seem to feel there’s still much more players can get out of the game that’s way past how FFXV wraps up the story of Noctis and his friends. With the announcement of at least three more episodic DLC coming for FFXV next year, starting with an episode focused on the game’s main antagonist Ardyn, there will be plenty more to do before every aspect of the story and characters have been completely exhausted. Among the content the developers are hoping players will embrace is their latest multiplayer feature Comrades, and being a lover of all things FFXV I gave the multiplayer a shot.
Thanksgiving is a time for family and friends to get together, share a meal, and reflect on what we’re most thankful for in our lives. What I love about this holiday is the opportunity to spend time with those we love and care about the most and eating until our stomachs can barely make room for a slice of some good ‘ol pumpkin pie. Big gatherings, like the ones we have on Thanksgiving, often needs a person or two who can liven things up. Thinking of some of the video game characters who have made the biggest impression on me, I couldn’t resist picking who I would want to have at my Thanksgiving feast if it were possible. Two characters from my favorite video game series of all time immediately came to mind—Varric and Iron Bull of Dragon Age.
Final Fantasy XV is one of the few video games from the series where your time playing it is far from over. Square Enix hasn’t been shy in their intention to keep expanding the story with additional DLC content, either to improve some holes in the main story or giving each member of Noctis’ crew their own episode to fully understand what their personal motivations, hopes, and fears are. It has been a few months since I finished my first run with FFXV, but I’m eager to play the expansion the developers keep adding onto the game. With this in mind, the epic and emotionally resonant music from the soundtrack still haunts me and I occasionally set this as my playlist on some weeks when I’m commuting to work or going out for the day. In honor of the upcoming multiplayer expansion Comrades, which will be released later this week, and next month’s final companion DLC Episode Ignis, here are my all time favorite music from the FFXV soundtrack.