All Posts In » Vanessa

  • 26Sep

    Special Sale Day: One Punch Man at Otakon 2016!

    Otakon celebrated it’s final year in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor this year, with one of it’s primary focused series being the new, and highly praised, One Punch Man. Series creator, known only by his pseudonym, One, initially launched the series as a web comic in 2009. It has since gone viral, and spawned a fully fledged manga, and now it’s own anime series, which has been officially localized by VIZ Media. Dubbed, “The Savior of Anime” due to it’s parodical take on so many overly used anime tropes, One Punch Man is a refreshing take on the Shonen genre, which many feel have stagnated in recent years. One of Otakon’s featured panels promoting the series included all major voice actors from the English dub of the show–which premiered this year on Toonami on July 16th. Panelists included were Max Mittelman, Zach Aguilar, Robbie Daymond, Ray Chase, and Eric Scott Kimerer who

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  • 27Aug

    Lord of the Rings at ConnectiCon: Still the Pinnacle of Fantasy in Cinema 15 Years Later

    While series like Game of Thrones and Harry Potter have taken center stage these past few years, along with an influx of new fantasy material in film and media, nothing has yet quite achieved the status of the trilogy that paved the very road for the genre to no longer be considered box office poison–The Lord of the Rings Trilogy. At ConnectiCon this July, Peter Jackson’s trilogy still held relevance on the convention scene, with Guests of Honor John Rhys-Davies and Sean Astin [who played Gimli and Sam respectively] hosting a series of Lord of the Rings panels for Tolkein and cinema fans alike. A central topic during one of these events was the use of practical effects so well utilized by Jackson during the filming of the original trilogy. Both actors described their time filming the trilogy as an experience like no other; complete with bonding between the fellowship

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  • 06Dec

    Dark Souls III Preview at New York Comic Con 2015

    Ever since Atlus Demon’s Souls, which released in 2009, From Software’s Souls has not only evolved, but continued to gain momentum, elevating its developer to one of the most respected teams in the industry. With Dark Souls III being released in early 2016, the series has it’s largest following yet, with a tremendous amount of hype already accruing for it. I’ve personally been a fan of the series since it’s creation, and was thrilled to have the opportunity to get a hands-on impression at this year’s New York Comic-Con. In terms of lines and wait times, there was no other game on the show floor with as long of a line–fans were eagerly awaiting the chance to take their own shot at the High Wall of Lothric. There were four builds available in this version of the game; Wandering Knight, Northern Warrior, Herald of White and Academy Assassin. I decided

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  • 31Jul

    Sailor Moon Sailebration with VIZ at Otakon 2015!

    Sailor Moon has had an enormous year since the release of Sailor Moon Crystal in mid 2014, along with an updated English adaption, with improved visuals, aspect ratios and new voice acting. The quintessential Magical Girl anime and manga took over Otakon [one of the largest anime conventions on the east coast] this past weekend, with an array of Sailor Moon events, guests, panels and convention exclusive items. VIZ Media’s booth had an Otakon special edition t-shirt and canvas tote for fans, limited edition collectable coins, pins, posters and paper tiaras along with special prize packs. As a major fan of the series myself since my early adolescence, I fully embraced my inner Moonie , and with it’s pink shimmery visuals, flowing brightly colored hair and signature Sailor fukus, it would be a challenge for Sailor Moon to not bring out the little girl in most of us. It was

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  • 13Oct

    Batman’s 75th Anniversary Celebration and Exhibit at NYCC 2014

    This year mark’s the 75th Anniversary of Bob Kane and Bill Finger’s iconic character Batman, and New York Comic Con decked the halls of the Javits Center in the spirt of the Dark Knight himself with a wide array of Batman related guests, content and exhibits. The official 75th Anniversary Panel featured Geoff Johns, the Chief Creative Officer of DC Entertainment, along with Neal Adams, Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo, Jim Lee, and everyone’s favorite Batman himself, Kevin Conroy in my personal favorite Batman role ever, Batman: The Animated Series. Batman: TAS artist, Bruce Timm and writer and artist Darwyn Cooke each created their own Batman short for the celebration. For anyone not lucky enough to score a seat in the panel, fear not, as both animated shorts are easy enough to find on the web now. In addition to the panel, Warner Brothers Comics, DC Entertainment and the United States

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  • 14Nov

    Interview With “Tales of” Producer Hideo Baba, at New York Comic Con

    Hideo Baba made an appearance at this year’s New York Comic Con to connect with fans and promote the upcoming Tales of Symphonia Chronicles and Tales of Xillia 2. As a fan of the series, I was fortunate enough to sit down and touch base with him about the series he’s extremely proud to be apart of. VB: How do you feel about the record breaking success of the Tales series here in the states, Tales of Xillia especially? HB: We are extremely pleased that more and more fans are picking up the series! I’ve been visiting the states more, and we’re very proud that the series has maintained it’s level of quality across so many generations and could appeal to a wider audience of gamers! VB: How has the Tales series stayed so popular in the West with increasing volume in sales, while interest in JRPGs has been on

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  • 11May

    Dragon’s Crown: Two Big Bouncing Problems for Gaming?

    About a month ago, Atlus confirmed the localization of Vanillaware’s Dragons’ Crown for North America. Many gamers like myself, who loved Odin Sphere for the Playstation 2, and Muramasa: The Demon Blade for the Wii were absolutely thrilled. Vanillaware’s character designer, George Kamitani has always had a very distinct style, which I have personally loved since as far back as Princess Crown for the Sega Saturn. Dragon’s Crown most noticeably features an evolution of his usual art style; The characters are more dramatically proportioned, with ridiculously mythologized body types. Rather than the daintier frames of Gwendolyn and Oswald, we now have the obscenely muscled Dwarf, and the notoriously buxomed Sorceress. And this has caused quite a bit of controversy amongst gamers with very vocal opinions. It all started with Kotaku’s Jason Schrierer stating Kamitani’s work embodied the “drawings of a fourteen-year-old-boy.” Kamitani fired back on his Facebook, with this image;

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  • 23Oct

    Heroines of Gaming: Samus Aran

    Welcome to the second entry of Heroines of Gaming! Last week we discussed the late, great RPG Cetra, Aeris Gainsborough. But this week, we’ll be covering a character who was introduced to the world in a gender-concealing Power Suit way, way back in 1986. Samus Aran [Metroid] There would be no way for me to continue another chapter of this column in good taste without giving Samus her fair due. She is virtually the poster child of badass women in gaming. Back in the 1980s, a female character being the primary hero of a video game was extremely rare. On top of that, when female characters became more prevalent as the star of a title, they usually had to be sexualized to varying extents for the game to be marketed to fans. Samus managed to dodge all of these stereotypes, and her series of games went on to be hugely

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  • 09Oct

    Heroines of Gaming: Aeris Gainsborough

    Throughout the entirety of my history with video games, one thing as stayed fairly consistent for me–I generally gravitate toward my female characters. And it’s not that I don’t appreciate male characters, (who tend to be the “star” of the game in the vast majority of titles) it’s that in most cases, I relate to the heroines more. Though most video games tend to have male writers and creators, I actually find the female characters they’ve created to be infinitely more interesting, and in a lot of cases, better developed than the heroines you’d see whose origins are in television or film. Growing up with a mother who exposed me to soap operas from a young age left me rather traumatized in regards to female imagery in the media. (Sleeping with your friend’s husband, and then throwing her in a pool while ripping her dress off makes you shed a

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  • 17Apr

    Turning Japanese Weekly News (April 11th – April 24th)

    New People Presents Artist Village Vol. 5 to Celebrate Cherry Blossom Festival Eclectic Art Market Takes Over Dynamic J-Town Venue For Two Consecutive Weekends This Month With Works From A Talented Mix Of Local Asian And Western-Influenced Artists NEW PEOPLE, the dynamic San Francisco entertainment destination bringing the latest examples of Japanese popular culture to North American shores, teams up with BAZAAR BIZARRE SAN FRANCISCO to celebrate the 45th Annual Cherry Blossom Festival and present the NEW PEOPLE ARTIST VILLAGE Vol. 5 – a fun and festive vertical arts and crafts show to be stationed throughout the spacious Japantown venue for two consecutive weekends – April 14th / 15th and April 21st / 22nd from 11:00am to 6:00pm each day. The free event extends the Bay Area’s yearly celebration of Asian tradition with a dozen unique artists and merchants, stationed in colorfully decorated kiosks throughout the building, offering an eclectic

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