Disney’s Magical Game

Pretty much all of my other games can just kiss me goodbye for the next few weeks, because I’ve found the ultimate game for me!!

Disney’s Magical World is everything I’d hoped it would be and more.  It’s like a combination of all of my favorite types of games, from Animal Crossing to Harvest Moon, with a touch of Diner Dash/Cake Mania, plus a little third-person action/adventure element too… all set in the Disney world, of course!

I fell in love with this game immediately.  I enjoy collection games where you have to seek out and collect as many items as you can, and that’s what this game has in spades.  Every area of the in-game world has special themed collectables, which you use to create new dishes for your Cafe, or to assemble new clothing sets, and craft themed furniture items too!

When I discovered that the 100 Acre Wood was the area where you can farm, I was so excited!  I love Winnie the Pooh so much.  After I planted some crops, I noticed that Pooh, Piglet, Rabbit, etc. would come over and help me water the crops and pull weeds!  How freakin’ cute is that???

So far I’ve unlocked areas for the following Disney themes: Cinderella, Winnie the Pooh, Alice in Wonderland and Aladdin.  (Note that I’ve only been playing the game for like 4 days lol!)  I literally cannot stop playing this game.  I’ve heard some criticism on the “grind” but I don’t even notice.  I love collecting everything, and as you play further in the game certain collectables become extremely easy to obtain and it all becomes second nature.  The action/adventure aspect is so much fun because you can craft new clothing that gives you better defense, and you can increase your offense by upgrading your magic wand.  It’s so cool!

I love being able to customize my Mii by wearing different outfits.  You can put together your own look by wearing different Disney themed hats, shirts, pants and shoes.  On top of that, you can unlock costumes, Quest outfits and formal wear.  I’ve already completed the Cinderella gown, so I get to run around dressed up in a fancy ball gown!  It’s adorable.

Honestly, I could go on all day about how much I love this game.  I hope I don’t beat it too quickly.  All I can think about as I write this is how much I want to play the game.  I’m obsessed.

There are two criticisms that I have of this game.  First of all, there is no Wi-Fi (aside from DLC) for online multiplayer.  Secondly, while there is free DLC, there is also paid DLC.  As of now there’s only like $5 worth of DLC you can buy, but I can see that easily adding up over time as they release new themes.  I’m a sucker for this stuff so I might be in trouble lol!

Holy Awesome Games!!

If you haven’t seen the latest Nintendo Direct, or rather, the Smash Bros. Direct from 4/8/14… well you are missing out.  The half hour long presentation has taken the Nintendo community by storm!  New game footage and details have been revealed about the upcoming Smash Bros. games for Nintendo Wii U and Nintendo 3DS.

There is just TOO much to hype about in the upcoming Smash games!!  So many new Pokemon playable characters, the Animal Crossing Villager character, new stages, new Final Destination stage options, new game modes for the 3DS version… and the graphics for the Wii U version are just so fantastic, I can’t get over it!  If you haven’t checked out the Nintendo Direct, watch it here.  Even if you’ve never played Smash Bros. before, now is the time to get into this franchise.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7xUWnQu2Grs

Can I just say that I totally LOVE Sakurai??  His hair is awesome!  He clearly is a huge Pokemon fan, has a hilarious sense of humor, and definitely represents what I consider to be “my generation” of gamers.  Is it bad that I secretly wish Sakurai would host all future Nintendo Direct videos?  :P

The bad news is that we have to wait.  Super Smash Bros. 3DS won’t be released until this summer.  The Wii U version is slated to be released this WINTER (holiday season no doubt) so we have a while before that new challenger will approach.  Not to mention we don’t have any actual concrete release dates.  I hate that!  My main worry is that the Wii U version will eventually be pushed back to 2015.  Fingers crossed that the developers stay on schedule.  Super Smash Bros. is going to be huge for StreetPass communities, and I can’t wait!!  So what am I supposed to do until then?

Good news!  Lots of cool games are coming out in the coming weeks and months.  Tomorrow, April 11th is the release date for Disney Magical World, which I’m sure many of my readers are psyched about!  If you haven’t heard of it, it’s kind of like a cross between Disney Infinity and Animal Crossing, with a touch of Harvest Moon.  You’re in the Disney world, and you get to interact with the Disney characters in a similar way to how Animal Crossing works.  From what I understand, it follows the daily calendar.  But you also get to gather items and collect things, which you use to craft OTHER things, which is why I say it’s also kind of like Harvest Moon.  Plus there’s some action/battling and you also run a cafe.  Everything I like!  If you want to learn more, check out this trailer:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DHDR–vr7vQ

Lots of cool games are coming out in May as well.  Namely, the awesome new Kirby Triple Deluxe and Mario Golf are both slated to be released early May.  At the end of May comes Mario Kart 8 for Wii U, which also looks to be AMAZING.  Sweet HD graphics on Rainbow Road?  Yes please!!

So hopefully all of those new games will tide us over until the release of Smash on 3DS later this summer.  I know I barely have time to play the games I have… I bought Yoshi’s New Island recently and have barely had a chance to play it because I’m still backlogged!  I was rushing to beat Pokemon X before the PVGC, but now that the big competition is over I can put Pokemon down for a minute.  What I really want to do is finish Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward which I had rented from GameFly.  I’m like half way through it so that’s my goal.

And if you are wondering… I have NO idea how I am going to manage 3 ACNL towns as well as Disney Magical World.  I haven’t even played ACNL in over a week, I’m sad to say.  There are just not enough hours in the day!  I’m hoping I will make some time to play games this weekend, even though I will be in Boston for PAX East.

But what can I say?  I have a ton of awesome games to play so I really can’t complain can I?  :D

 

The PVGC Spring Regionals 2014

So sorry I haven’t written a blog in a while.  Specifically, a GAMING related blog.  I started a new job recently, and even MORE recently blew my back out so it’s been tough to find time to write.

Despite my back feeling like crap, last weekend JDubz and I took a trip up to Sturbridge, MA to attend the 2014 Spring Regionals of the Pokemon Video Game Championships (PVGC).  I had been preparing a team for a month so I wasn’t going to skip the competition!

Want to hear about my team/strategy?  If you have any suggestions please comment!

My PVGC Team

Introducing my team!!

  • Blastoise
  • Gengar
  • Kangashkan
  • Dragonite
  • Marowak
  • Zoroark

You might think… that’s kind of a weird doubles team.  I’m not a big fan of gimmicks or relying on status moves to win battles.  I’m more of a guns blazing, offense-only kind of player.  So my strength is in having Pokemon that either deal out hard hits or Pokemon that can really roll with the punches.  My team is a little misleading.  I only have Zoroark in there to throw people off of their game.  He’s not EV trained or anything, just there to make people wonder “Am I battling Zoroark right now?” during turn 1.  Dragonite, while awesome, is also just there for show.  Dragonite is my fairy-bait.  Since my Gengar is a fairy-killer, I have the popular Dragonite on my team so people will feel compelled to bring out their fairy types into battle in case I’m using a dragon type.

The four Pokemon I always use are Blastoise and Marowak (team A) and Gengar and Kangashkan (team B).  Marowak has Lightning Rod ability, which will keep Blastoise safe.  I keep Gengar and Kang together for fighting ghost types, plus Gengar has Levitate to keep him safe from Kang’s Earthquake.  Both Blastoise and Kang have their Mega Stones as held items so I have options against my opponents.  When fighting a team with ghost types, I keep Kangashkan with his Scrappy ability and Mega-Evolve Blastoise.  Otherwise, I go Mega with Kang for that extra hit that you get with Parental Bond, which really helps Power-Up Punch.

Of course, my team is vulnerable to many types and has plenty of holes.  But in this generation, there’s no real safe type combination, so everyone just goes with their personal style.  My team didn’t hold up well against the tough  competition at PVGC, but I did win my first match because of my team’s synergy.  My opponent didn’t account for Marowak’s Lightning Rod and got locked into a harmless Lightning Bolt attack with his Choice Scarf on Gardevoir.  It’s usually careless errors like that which determine who wins and who loses.  Unfortunately for me, that first win made me cocky and I made some questionable choices in my second two battles.

After 3 matches, they announced there would be a lunch break.  JDubz found out that if you had any losses by this point, you had no chance at Top 8, and since my back was killing me we decided to call it a day.  We still had a lot of fun and I know that while my team struggled a bit in doubles… it will be great for singles battles at PAX!  (Btw if you are interested in learning who won the regionals, check this link out!)

That’s right, this upcoming weekend is PAX East 2014.  My back is still messed up so I probably won’t be able to walk around all weekend at PAX.  However, since Nintendo isn’t showcasing at the convention, I probably won’t be missing too much.  But what I DON’T plan to miss is my panel… the Pokemon X&Y: Competitive Trainer Seminar!  I’m hosting a panel, along with JDubz, Pete from SPNYC, and KC and JV from the Pocket Players on Saturday, April 12 from 1-2pm.  I was really afraid I might miss the panel, but I think my back can survive for an hour.  I put too much work into making this panel happen, I refuse to not attend!  The only other thing I’m going to make sure to try out is the PAX Pokemon League.  It’s a popular singles competition where you can seek out and challenge gym leaders on a few different skill tiers.  If you beat the designated gym leaders, you get a badge.  Collect all of the badges in your tier and you can fight the PAX Elite 4!  How cool is that??  So I’m excited to try out my teams in a singles environment.

Wish me luck!

 

Beauty Blog: Kiss Looks So Natural Lashes

This might be relevant to some of you cosplayers out there: today I tried false eyelashes for the first time!  I’d never taken the initiative to try false eyelashes before, even though I’d always wanted to because my eyelashes are very thin and well… sparse.  I always assumed it was a complicated and messy ordeal so I never tried them out.  However, when I received a free set of Kiss brand “Looks So Natural Lashes” in my Influenster #JadoreVoxBox, I finally had a chance to see what it was all about!

Since I’m not very experienced with false eyelashes, I went to the Kiss YouTube page (not to be confused with the classic rock band lol!) and watched some very informative videos about application and tips.  I felt like a pro after!  Here’s the steps I took:

One eye with the Kiss Looks So Natural false eyelash applied, the other without. Big difference!!

  1. Before applying, I “sized” the Kiss Looks So Natural Lashes by holding them along the lash line and determining how much extra lash needed to be cut off.  Then I carefully snipped the edge of the false lashes with a scissor.
  2. As part of my normal routine, I put on my BB cream and under eye concealer, as well as eyeliner before attempting to use the false eyelashes.
  3. Once I was ready, I used the small bottle of eyelash adhesive that came with the lashes to brush a small amount of glue to the bottom.  I counted to 30 (they say to wait 30 seconds before applying, to allow time for the adhesive to become the perfect consistency) and got ready to apply.
  4. Gently, I pushed the edge of the false eyelash to the start of my lash line on the inside of my eye.  Then I patted it down on the outside corner of my eyelid, and carefully tapped along the entire lashline to make sure the false eyelashes were sticking in the right place.  Of course then it was repeat from step 3 for my other eye.
  5. After the eyelashes were sufficiently stuck onto my lash line, I proceeded to finish my makeup routine by applying my favorite mascara on both my natural and false eyelashes to help them blend together.
  6. I added a bit more eyeliner on top of the false eyelash line to add more depth and create a more dramatic look.
  7. Wanting the focus to be on my eyes, I opted for a shiny lip gloss to finish my makeup.

Now that I’ve successfully applied these false eyelashes, I feel really glamorous!  I’m definitely addicted now.  Most likely I will start wearing these when my band has a live performance, and for fancy events like my sister’s wedding this July.

I just want to add that the Kiss Looks So Natural lash set was MUCH easier to use than I had anticipated.  It was simple, no mess, no fuss.  My makeup didn’t smudge once.  It was really a fun experience.  Thanks so much for the opportunity to try these out, Influenster!

Feeling so glam with my new Kiss false eyelashes!

PS – I receive free products to try out courtesy of Influenster.  If you’re interested in joining Influenster Nation, please comment or message me and I can send you an invitation!

Beauty Blog: Boots Botanics Clay Mask

When I’m not playing 3DS, I like to try out beauty products, as you all know.  I recently received an amazing Influenster VoxBox (for freeeee!!!) that contained so much cool stuff!  I am going to do a post reviewing everything at a later date, but I had to share this really awesome clay mask from Boots Botanics today because it is really cool!

Obligatory scary mud mask selfie!!

Influenster sent me a nice 3.5 oz size sample of the Boots Botanics Ionic Clay Mask to try out.  I will definitely get 2 or even 3 uses out of this sample.  How awesome!  I tried the mask after my shower, and was really impressed with it.  Boots Botanics is cool because they use plants to naturally improve your skin.  They even have a hashtag #powerofplants to help promote the product.

The Ionic Clay Mask applies easily because of it’s thick consistency.  You don’t have to use too much, a thin layer all over the face is all you need.  The clay dries fairly quickly, and that’s when it really gets interesting.  Once the clay is dry, you will start seeing all of your pores getting the oil sucked out of them.  So many little dots on my nose!!  AHHH!!  But I knew it was working and that’s what matters.  After I cleaned off the mask, my skin felt very clean and fresh.  It was a wonderful experience!  If you are looking for a good clay or mud mask, definitely try Boots’ Botanics: The Power of Plants brand.  5 Stars!  lol

Bring Back Spiky-Eared Pichu!!!

Oh hey, did ya know?  Pokemon Bank is officially available to download in North America!  After over a month of delays, no official release date and lots of impatient speculation, we finally have the holy grail for Pokemon fans!  With Pokemon Bank, we can now backup and store up to 3,000 Pokemon on Nintendo’s newly offered cloud-based banking software.  All those Pokemon that you’ve been transferring up through the generations can now be safely saved for years to come!  Most likely using Bank will make transferring to future generation games much easier as well.  Rejoice in the free 30 day trial!  After that you will have to pay an annual fee.

Now, when I say you can transfer Pokemon that you’ve been using from past generations, I don’t mean all of them.  Hacked Pokemon and many of the special event Pokemon from past gen’s cannot be transferred so they will forever remain in the past.  HeartGold and SoulSilver fans suffer greatly from this limitation.  HG was definitely my absolute favorite Pokemon in the franchise, I loved walking around with my Pokemon and I especially loved all of the special event Pokemon and cut-scenes that you would unlock through different WIFI and in-store DLC offerings in that game.  My personal favorite was the Spiky-Eared Pichu, and like many other past-gen event Pokemon, he can’t be transferred.

For Spiky-Eared Pichu to be available in HG/SS, you had to download a special “Pikachu-colored Pichu” DLC (which was also cute!) and take it to the mysterious shrine in Ilex Forest.  I think you might have also needed Celebi or something but I don’t remember the details.  Anyway, in Ilex Forest if you have the right event Pokemon, it unlocked a cut-scene where Spiky-Eared Pichu pops out and does a little chase/dance thing with the Pikachu-colored Pichu.  Sorry if the facts here are fuzzy, but it was several years ago and I apparently didn’t take any screenshots lol!  Needless to say, neither the Pikachu-colored Pichu nor the Spiky-Eared Pichu can be transferred outside of HG/SS.  Don’t even get me started on the Surfing Pikachu in HG/SS, which you had to get over 7,500 steps per day on your Pokewalker on a special DLC walking course and THEN you still had to hunt and successfully capture the rare Pikachu using the Pokewalker mini game.  Yep, non-transferrable, because it had an “illegal HM” so the Black and White in-game Transfer Machine wouldn’t accept it.  Really unfair.

I just don’t like all of that hard work wasted.  You get emotionally attached to a Pokemon that you have to work to get, so the fact that Pokemon like Spiky-Eared Pichu can’t be transferred to Pokemon Bank almost makes the entire feature pointless.  It’s these super special RARE Pokemon (and their rare sprites too) that make these Pokemon the ones that I’d actually WANT and NEED to have saved through the years.  But no, they are doomed to sit alone in the Box never to be seen again, unless I dust off the cartridge for old times sake.

All I really want at this point is for The Pokemon Company to re-release some of these special event Pokemon as DLC for Gen VI so that we can at least enjoy them again.  (And not only release them in JAPAN!!  I know that Japanese players were given a Flying Pikachu DLC in Gen V if they went to a local train station and downloaded the DLC, and those are very hard to come by legally if you live outside of Japan.)  Older gamers such as myself especially wanted Pokemon Bank for nostalgic reasons, so if we could have some of our extra-special Pokemon back, it would really make the experience more enjoyable.

Please, someone hear my plea!!  Bring back Spiky-Eared Pichu!!  :(

Ready for Setsubun!

UPDATE ON WASABI:

Fans of Wasabi can breathe easy.  It seems that Wasabi is no longer in imminent danger of being destroyed!  I did a bit of research on my game loading slowly, and saw that I wasn’t the only one experiencing similar problems.  I was reading some different forums, and many suggested that perhaps the SD card was to blame.  I investigated this a bit, by playing some of the other apps and software that I have stored on my JP3DS’ SD card.  Every other game I tried ran fine, and there were no more issues regarding the A button acting strange.  I determined that it couldn’t be the SD card.  (For the record, I’m using a Lexar 4GB SD Card.)

More research turned up this forum thread, which was very interesting.  The original thread creator describes that he is facing a problem that is almost identical to mine, only my game wasn’t crashing, just taking a long time to load.  This poster describes how it could be a digital software issue, an SD card issue, and then there was one more factor that he described in his thread:

Wow, just wow… My town crashed for the sixth time today, 3 days after I formatted that SD card into FAT32. When it happened, I was playing online with two other players in my town with the “Best Friends” function activated and my town has quite a lot of bushes, flowers, trees, and whatnot… Most of the other towns I visited are usually less jam-packed than I do. It might be due of the complexity of my town for raising the crash rate over time.

This post got me thinking about Wasabi.  What was different about Wasabi as of late that would cause it to act differently than it had in the past year?  Ohhh right… Wasabi was completely overrun with bamboo at this time.  Then I started thinking about how Animal Crossing save files have been notoriously large (remember how you needed an entire dedicated save cart to run AC: Game Cube?) and maybe all that bamboo (plus everything that comes with bamboo, such as new spawned shoots/cracks every few days, loads of rotten shoots that didn’t have the room to grow into real bamboo, which I hadn’t been shoveling up) was causing the load time to slow.  Think about it, the game has to render all of the townies, houses, flowers, bushes, public works, your full catalog… and now I was forcing it to render hundreds of bamboo stalks, shoots, cracks and rotten shoots all over my town.  It sounded like a VERY plausible cause.

So I did what any reasonable person would do.  I grabbed my golden axe and went on a rampage chopping down all the bamboo!  I left all of the bamboo stumps because they look pretty cool, like wierd mini warp pipes or something.  Guess what?  It seems to have done the trick!  As soon as I saved Wasabi with it’s new “bamboo stump” style, the game loaded up much more quickly!  What a relief!

My advice: While it’s awesome and fun to decorate your town with all of these new features like shrubs and bamboo and public works, remember that aesthetically (and apparently from a coding perspective) less is more.  You don’t need to have something in every single square inch of your town.  In fact, doing so seems to kill your game!  I don’t know if anyone had the same issues with a cartridge, but at least if you have a digital download, use caution!  But personally I think it was the living bamboo with all of the spawning and rotten shoots that was the main issue in my game.

Having said all of that, the good news is that the Setsubun Festival is ON!  If you are still interested in participating in the festival, which I will have open in Wasabi on Monday 2/3 from 9PM-11PM EST, please visit the event page here:

https://www.facebook.com/events/1461491234064525/

The main reason I ask you to RSVP on the event page is so that I know how many to expect.  If I don’t have it already, please comment on the event page with your friend code so that I can add you to my system.  I will also be trying out a new format for this JP event.  Using the StreetPass Long Island Twitch Channel, I will be streaming this event live on the internet.  Hopefully this will make it easier for people to see who is coming and going, and when they should pop in.  Our Twitch channel also has a chat room, so hopefully the power combo of a live stream AND a chat room will make the experience a little smoother for everyone.  Keep in mind that the chat room on Twitch is not compatible with iOS, so you’ll want to be on a real computer to participate in that way.

Hope to see you all there!  Fingers crossed that we won’t have any more loading problems in Wasabi!