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26

Sep

Pianist plays Final Fantasy music

This year’s New Zealand Music Month has delivered its usual pot pouri of audio treats but perhaps none stranger than that served up at Puke Ariki in New Plymouth yesterday.

 New Plymouth Boy’s High School student Matthew Reeve performed theme tunes from the well-known video game Final Fantasy during a lunchtime performance at the museum.

“I learnt to play when I was quite young and when I first heard them (the theme tunes) I quite liked the sound,” said Matthew.

He taught himself the pieces, which are mostly classic compositions, from listening to the games, and recordings on YouTube. 

Although not the biggest fan of classical music, Matthew said he was drawn to the romantic sound of the video game themes.

“I play what I find appealing,” he said.

Proud mum Rosemary Reeve and grandmother Jeanne Aitchison were on hand to witness Matthew’s performance and although not fans of the video game they enjoyed the show.

 “I love it. It appeals to such a wide age range,” said Mrs Reeve. “It’s modern music for the kids but it has a classical kind of sound to it to as well.”

Final Fantasy is the flagship series of Japanese video game giant Square Enix and its music, created by self-taught musician Nobuo Uematsu, features prominently on social media.

American pianist Michael Gluck (aka Piano Squall) for example has had about 1.5 million views on YouTube of his Final Fantasy battle theme medley.

Matthew, who also played his own composition Northern Lights for which he got an Excellence in NCEA Level 2 music, aims to go to university next year to study geophysics.

But if given the opportunity the teenager would love to write music for video games.

“Who wouldn’t? I’m sure anyone who got offered that would do it,” he said.

This is a rendition of Aerith’s Theme from Final Fantasy VII played by Thomas Unger  whose Youtube account is Arkton.

The dolyak and his witness…

During my time in Tyria I have been amazed and surprised at just how deep this game really is. It has a good habit of getting me when I least expect it, and none more so then today…

So there I was, minding my own bussiness trying to get some levels through heart quests and dynamic events, while out of nowhere I’m surrounded by all these dead Dolyak. And here I’m saying to myself, “what the f***’s this s**t?”

I look around and try and get a gist of what’s going on, and then I soon learn that this is a Dolyak graveyard — these bastards walk all the way across the land just to die in this mud hole. I’m pretty dumfounded by now, and so I quietly pay my respects and get hell out (it’s sacred ground you know). But then an old dolyak shows up.

He’s limping. I’m quietly thinking to myself ‘you poor, poor mofo’. I just stand and watch (and take screenies) while the beast of burden makes his way slowly to the patch of dirt where his fellow dolyaks lie.

He stands there for a moment, probably reflecting on his life. I start to think to myself as well trying to figure out what his life was like. Was he captured young by some loser-Norn and forced to carry supplies across the rugged north? Or maybe he was a free spirit, wondering the plains with others of his kind. Whatever he did, he was at peace with himself. His eyes were closed, the wind stopped. He was ready.

He collapses on the ground, letting nature have his way with him. I wanted to give my respects but suddenly waves of ravens start picking at his body. In a moment of rage, I started burning them all. I was pretty f***in’ mad - so mad in fact, I forgot to take pics. But I soon stopped. In my moment of anger I saw him again.

I didn’t know what to say at this point. Speechless. Wordless. Breathless. There were plenty of words to describe what I was doing, but none to describe what I was feeling.

I followed him again, as he started yet another journey. I wasn’t sad anymore, that was for sure. I have to say, it’s probably pretty shit to be a Dolyak. People just want to put s**t on you all the time, and I have to admit that I’ve killed a few Dolyaks, regrettably now.

Even the stupidest bloody creatures in this game have their own charater. I had only been in this area for no more then a few minutes, but I was touched by this moment. I won’t forget this s**t.

I made my last goodbyes and waved. I think I cried a little.

As he vanished into the mountains, I too went on to carry on with my story.

SO DEEP!

12

Sep

Taranaki fans go crazy for Hunger Games

Taranaki fans of science-fantasy blockbuster The Hunger Games are devouring the books and flocking to the cinema to catch the film.

Events Cinema New Plymouth manager Pam Smith said since the movie which opened on March 22 it had proven popular selling out throughout the week and a large turnout was expected during the Easter Break.

“We’ve had school groups coming in because they have been studying the book at school,” Mrs Smith said, “and teenagers have been coming to see it multiple times.”

In North America the film’s opening weekend grossed a record US$152.5 million ($186.2 million) and New Zealand it grossed $3 million in its first three days.

New Plymouth bookstores say editions of the best seller, which is particularly popular with young women, are selling quickly, and the wait list at Puke Ariki is getting longer every day.

Sue Meek of Paper Plus said since the movie came out last week she has had to keep restocking the trilogy.

“We’ve sold 12 each of the children’s and adult versions,” she said.

Benny’s Bookshop and Poppies also reported a brisk trade in the book which comes in three editions, one aimed at children, an adult’s version and another designed as a movie tie in.

Neither retailer was willing to be more specific about numbers.

Puke Ariki has 47 holds on the nine books available at the library and more reservations are being made every day.

“Every time a movie comes out the book just takes off,” said Puke Ariki youth learning officer Sarah Ede.

Gripping read: New Plymouth’s Hinenui Knock says The Hunger Games has a “kick arse heroine” and she’ll be reading the rest of the books in the trilogy and catching the film.     PHOTO: ROBERT CHARLES


Avid reader, Hinenui Knock, 27, of New Plymouth, said she was enjoying the book which she described as similar to Twilight although it was less of a teen romance and had more of a story.

“It’s got a really strong female character who chooses to go ahead of her younger sister in the ballot and is a kick arse female heroine.”

Mrs Knock said she hadn’t seen the movie yet but was planning to watch it and read the rest of the trilogy.

The Hunger Games, the first book in the series, was published in 2008 and is set in a dystopian future.

It follows Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence in the movie) who volunteers to take part in the Hunger Games, a tournament which pits boys and girls from 12 districts against each other in a fight to the death.

Its popularity has been compared to Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight saga with its dark themes and strong heroine.

Mrs Meek of Paper Plus said that although The Hunger Games wasn’t selling as well as Twilight yet the series could still reach that level. 

21

May

I’ve been playing some Blitzcrank lately after reading NhatNguyen’s guide.

Definitely a high risk champion - a good pull can get you a kill, win a team fight or win you the match.

I really want to try playing Blitz in the mid lane. It’s kind of troll, but I’ve seen it work - in low and high ELO, Dignitas' scarra being a prime example of this.

In all he is a fun champion. Win or lose, you’re going to have a good time.

Video via [iloveyouireallydo].

04

Apr

The middle lane is usually reserved for the AP Mage in the current meta, but I believe Talon fits the title “AD Mage”.
I have been testing out Mid Lane Talon for a few games now (after failing multiple times with him top), and I am really enjoying it - this pure satisfaction coming from hearing “killing spree” and “legendary”. 
When Talon first came out, he was a machine. His W was so overpowered that it was ridiculous trying to lane against him, but after his nerf, he fell off a bit.
Talon really does suit the mid lane though. His strength not only comes from his ability to handle lane well (that is after his initial weakness between levels 1-3), but more on his ability to roam to the side lanes and to pull off some pretty wondrous ganks.
The idea with Talon is to rush your “Brutilizer”, and then invest in a pair of “Boots of Movement”. These boots really help you to get to the side lanes nice and quick, 75% of the time pulling in some nice kills.
Talon, however, does rely on kills a lot to be effective. It’s really hard to catch up when you do badly with him, so getting an early advantage and pressing it is key. If you do this well enough, late game is a piece of cake.
Talon is a pubstomp hero, so I’m not sure if we’ll see any pros using him in the mid during tournament play.
In all, Talon is a nice, fun champion perfect for soloque - enjoy.

The middle lane is usually reserved for the AP Mage in the current meta, but I believe Talon fits the title “AD Mage”.

I have been testing out Mid Lane Talon for a few games now (after failing multiple times with him top), and I am really enjoying it - this pure satisfaction coming from hearing “killing spree” and “legendary”. 

When Talon first came out, he was a machine. His W was so overpowered that it was ridiculous trying to lane against him, but after his nerf, he fell off a bit.

Talon really does suit the mid lane though. His strength not only comes from his ability to handle lane well (that is after his initial weakness between levels 1-3), but more on his ability to roam to the side lanes and to pull off some pretty wondrous ganks.

The idea with Talon is to rush your “Brutilizer”, and then invest in a pair of “Boots of Movement”. These boots really help you to get to the side lanes nice and quick, 75% of the time pulling in some nice kills.

Talon, however, does rely on kills a lot to be effective. It’s really hard to catch up when you do badly with him, so getting an early advantage and pressing it is key. If you do this well enough, late game is a piece of cake.

Talon is a pubstomp hero, so I’m not sure if we’ll see any pros using him in the mid during tournament play.

In all, Talon is a nice, fun champion perfect for soloque - enjoy.

29

Mar

Getting into Fizz

After mucking around with random champions, I’ve decided I’m going to focus on my Midlane Fizz for the time being.

Fizz is one of those characters that doesn’t get a lot of positive light from high ELO NA players, but is very fun.

Fizz is extremely nimble, having a pasive which allows him to phase move through other characters and minions, as well as a dash and dodge which can jump through a select number of walls.

He can do some insane plays. I’ve figured out a way to do some free damage as well - activate his extra damage form his w, then dash to the opponent, then simply dodge away. Of course, this can kill your mana in the early game, but as long as you’re smart about it, then you can play some pretty good mind games with your opponent. Even Cassiopia was no match from this harass, and she is one of the most powerful mid APs in the game.

I want to move on to Pantheon next, but having fun with Fizz so far.

14

Mar

Xerath is free to play this week - score!
Xerath is a character whom I have wanted to play for a long, long time. He’s a bit underused, but I think he is one of the best APs in the game. He out ranges all other mages, so he can make plays from ungodly distances.
I find that whenever I play an AD or AP Carry, my positioning leaves a lot to be desired. The damage from his poke may not be any Nid Spear, but damn, his ult can bring a whole team to half health in one combo whilst nicely tucked behind his tanks. This brings you a lot of agro, which means the AD carry can do their thing (dat damage).
Only a true terror could muck him up - and we’ll see if that’s me this week.

Xerath is free to play this week - score!

Xerath is a character whom I have wanted to play for a long, long time. He’s a bit underused, but I think he is one of the best APs in the game. He out ranges all other mages, so he can make plays from ungodly distances.

I find that whenever I play an AD or AP Carry, my positioning leaves a lot to be desired. The damage from his poke may not be any Nid Spear, but damn, his ult can bring a whole team to half health in one combo whilst nicely tucked behind his tanks. This brings you a lot of agro, which means the AD carry can do their thing (dat damage).

Only a true terror could muck him up - and we’ll see if that’s me this week.

13

Mar

Creativity is the residue of time wasted.
Albert Einstein

One of the games I have been looking forward to this is year is Guild Wars 2. Arenanet (the game’s maker) are currently giving out beta invitations, which I secretly-really-fuckin’-want, but probably not gonna get. :(

The above video is a trailer they released at Gamecom last year. It’s quite epic, so be careful, kk?

Y-ELLO-DURR

Oh, why hello there!

This will be the beginning of my new blog.

YUS! EXCITING!

In it, I will be talking about all the games I’m playing, as well as the things I do (I like to call this part of my life “living”).

Games are a pretty huge part of my life. I play them a lot and I’ve been doing it ever since I was a man-child.

But living is pretty cool too. Although it may contradict, I like the outdoors. I’m not much of a hiker, but I like to go out and just look around and do stuff - walking pace.

But that’s me in a not-nutshell.

Hope you like reading. I hope you like this.

I hope you like reading this.

Late