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  1. Put down the Dark Souls series for good after completing them all a few weeks back and have been in limbo looking for the next game to get me fully sucked in. I’ve been trying with Uncharted Lost Abyss, as I’ve enjoyed everything else in the series a lot. Maybe it’s just game fatigue but it’s not sticking with me yet. The beginning is always slower but I feel like 5 hours in there’s only been about 30 minutes of “fun” so far. Hard to keep going. I really don’t understand why it’s so hard but I feel like new games, usually no matter how good, take a certain level of activation energy to hit a tipping point where I can’t stop playing them. There’s sooo many games I’ve played and stopped at the beginning, only to swap it for replaying something more familiar. Maybe I just enjoy mindless gaming more. But I have Hollow Knight just sitting there waiting to be played, and I absolutely love Dark Souls and Castlevanoa, so I know it’ll be right up my alley, and yet here I am playing Bloodstained for the second time. With my huge bucket list of games I still need to play I almost find myself overwhelmed and end up reverting to comfort games. Bloodstained is really fun, but there is definitely some magic missing compared to the original CV’s. The fact that they had to change every little monster name so as not to copy the original franchise really hurts the game and makes it feel like a cheap knock off to me, even though I know it’s not and why they had to do it. Art style doesn’t quite do it for me either. The series peaked for me with the DS games, DoS and OoE are two of my favorite games ever but it’s good to see Iga move the series (spin off series I guess) back into the right direction.
  2. Okay great but when can they cheer
  3. Yeah I just watched it and loved it. Violento Jack is someone I’ve always thought was great, but in the last year I’ve realized the only guy on his level in the world right now is Takeda. The Jack vs. Masaoka Scaffold Match from 2016 (?) is one of the best deathmatches of the last decade that I really wish was released on more than just the one hardcam shoot I saw it on.
  4. Numazawa’s always been one of my least favorites but I’ll give him credit for the title match against Takashi Sasaki in June 2006. Definitely one of the best BJW matches ever. His title reign in 07 was good, and he had a fun series with Yoshihito in 2011. I feel like that really bad concussion/skull fracture against Sekimoto in 2005 really changed the trajectory of his career even if he had some decent performances after that.
  5. Miyamoto beating Drew Parker for the BJW belt is pretty baffling, seems like they’re cutting Parker off as soon as he got started. I’m a fan of Yuko but Parker had some real momentum going.
  6. I’ve never been a huge Adam Cole fan, but I can totally understand people wanting him in AEW given his history with the Elite. I just don’t see how he’s gonna stand out, his promos have always been fine bordering on generic, but his main moves seem to be super kicks and a Canadian Destroyer, which will do nothing to help him stand out compared to anyone else on the roster given how overused they are. (Credit to whoever coined the “International Transition”) Bray Wyatt is another one I don’t get the hype for. Him not being on a leash might just mean more of the awful stuff we saw from the Fiend, there’s not much I’ve seen to prove he had a tons of untapped potential, but I’d be happy to be proven wrong. I’ve also never seen him have a good match, anything I did enjoy was largely due to Brodie carrying the tag matches, or great opponents like Daniel Bryan. I get that WWE has basically everyone with an ounce of talent in the industry signed, so the idea that AEW just survives on WWE’s old toys is dumb, but Bray is probably where I’d draw the line. Why not let him try to kill it on the indies and learn how to work with the newer crop of guys like a Drew McIntyre and be undeniable before you sign him.
  7. I’ve been raving about the Dark Souls series since I’ve devoured all the games in the last 8 months, but I played through Dark Souls 2 (Scholar of the First Sin) recently and I have to rescind my comments about Dark Soups being hard for the sake of hard. I don’t think any of the other ones are, but this game suuuucks. I can see why it was the black sheep of the series, and it’s bizarre how it can feel so close to the other Souls games, but so much less fun. Definitely feels like a game made by a team that doesn’t understand why the Souls experience is so addicting. The amount of enemies they throw at you in certain areas is so cheap, and their aggro ranges are so large that there’s no way to run past anything. The bosses are pretty easy, but god forbid you lose to one you’re gonna have to kill so many enemies along the way to get back to them. The levels felt like slogs to get through, but the bosses are generally extremely slow with telegraphed offense, so you really don’t feel a sense of accomplishment when you beat them. The hit boxes are also really bad, and especially using a strength build with a heavy slow sword I can’t tell you how many times I raged from my sword not hitting someone or going where it’s supposed to go, and my enemy was able to take advantage of my vulnerability. There was one point in the game I really wanted to quit where my slow but strong sword wouldn’t stagger these really weak enemies they throw at you in enormous amounts, even on a one on one situation, I’d hit them, and by the time my attack was over they’d stunlock me (even with the strongest armor in the game) and kill me before I could get a second attack off. Ended up beating Fume Knight, the supposed hardest boss in the games, and just quit there knowing the rest wouldn’t be worth it. Anyway, don’t play this game. DS1 and 3 have some flaws but are well worth the effort it takes to get through them, and Bloodborne is a top 5 game of all time for me, so I was surprised at how much could go wrong here. For now I’ll probably play some palette cleansing relaxing games like Stardew Valley and wait for Elden Ring to come out.
  8. This is more in response to other closed threads where it’s a common complaint, but I’ll just put it here. I think there’s plenty of valid criticisms to make about JR, but I am a bit baffled on this obsession with his comments on physiques. Physiques are an obvious built in narrative when you’re commentating a contact sport. I can’t believe I feel inclined to point that out. I don’t see how it promotes an unhealthy body image for the UFC commentators to point out how Mackenzie Dern’s physique has improved and has seemingly had a positive impact on her recent win streak. When a young kid like Chase Cooper is fighting, his physique is the elephant in the room. How can you not talk about how he would benefit from bulking up and adding some power to his frame? Sean O’Malley is another who’s filled out his frame more to add a little man strength and it’s working out well for him. It’s the same with Jungle Boy and Griff Garrison, these are young kids who haven’t even fully matured, advising them to add some mass and pump some iron while their natural test and GH levels are peaking is not some sort of dog whistle that they need to get in touch with Brian Cage’s dealer. It’s perfectly reasonable to expect a 23 year old kid to be able to add 15 pounds of lean mass over a few years. If you think that’s some sort of unreasonable pressure to put on some kids who are on the cusp of stardom, you’re crazy.
  9. Well now I like the guy even less. Any link/remember what this interview was from?
  10. For some reason I was getting Zap Rowsdower vibes from Kenny Omega last night, he just needs to start rocking the Canadian tuxedo now. Show was alright, the opener was fun, but the interference is just so overdone it's getting increasingly infuriating, especially at the end of a good match. Despite some of their tendencies, Young Bucks are must watch TV for me, though for some reason I find Nick Jackson generally hilarious while Matt's a little more cringe worthy to me. I love the look of the Varsity Blondes. AEW needs more hot boys and the pairing with Hart is perfect. Pilman's not horrible on promos, I remember liking the lead up the Young Bucks match, but we gotta stop with them ending on some variation of "you're a BITCH~!". Comes off as sophomoric, lazy, and is all too common in AEW. Add that one to the drinking game. Also loved Andrade's promo and character, why do we need to give him a mouth piece again? Main event was good, interference is awful once again. Jericho getting thrown off the stage looked dumb. I'm at a point now where I actually can't think of the last time I loved something he did, the first Stadium Stampede comes to mind but has there really been nothing since then? And yes, JR should go. Something like this was waiting to happen with the Freudian slips he's been making for years now, like calling Omega the WWE champion. There was this whole narrative that he adds the story, Excal calls the moves, and Tony brings the excitement, except Excal tells the story better than JR and renders him useless. You don't need two guys for callbacks to the bygone era and bring back old fans. Tony is great for that, still has youthful enthusiasm and lucidity, and has chemistry with Excal, whereas JR usually gets in their way. Hearing him try and sell some of the big moments just reminds me that he had a lot more vitality in his calls 20 years ago. He's much better suited to heading the sit down interviews.
  11. Trying to work my way through Sekiro, man is it tough. As many have said and I was expecting, the skills I've acquired from Souls games that made Bloodborne pretty easy don't carry over at all here and they might be making it harder, as old habits die hard. But I'm not sure I'm loving the game yet. The combat feels wayyy more reaction time reliant than the Souls games. It was easy to troubleshoot in the Souls games and know what I could do different next time, whereas here I'm having little idea what to do besides having quicker reaction time, which is not something I find is improving with age. The combat is a bit more rock/paper/scissors, do you dodge, parry, or jump, but I have so little time to decide these things that most of my victories seem to come by luck/accident. Somehow I managed to beat the first boss on my first attempt, but other parts of the game and special enemies have me banging my head on the wall. If I do end up beating this game, I somehow have the feeling it will be done through sheer will and chaotic chance, rather than skill.
  12. They're finally moving someone up the card and yet there's little competition for him to face if he were to actually win the belt. This was a problem they should have been addressing years ago when they had guys like Daisuke Masaoka having great performances on the spot shows, trying to break into deathmatches, and they just didn't use him anymore for some random reason. Then continued to push Abby and Ito, who even 8 years ago were past their prime. Freedoms somehow made a bunch of stars that Big Japan has lately become dependent on since they have no one of their own. When they booked Fukimoto in that one tournament I found it funny that a guy who wasn't "good enough" to be in Big Japan years back went to Freedoms where he was welcomed, he was allowed to be crazy and got to be where he was undeniable despite his indy scum stench, then when Big Japan can't fill out a tournament they finally use him and book him to go over Ito since they no other new options. Uto, Sakuda, and Ueki were their few projects they were working on and they all left to be Freelancers. Maybe Uto retired? Haven't seen his name in a while. Now they have a few guys like Hyodo, Yuki Ishikawa, and Kamitani to build up, but I wouldn't be surprised if they leave and get phased out after a few years. Kamitani might be their next Ito, but he needs rivals. Also a lot of the new guys are really short, which unfortunately hurts drawing power and being seen as an ace. They may get a run with the title, but they will never head the company if they're too small, which maybe they felt with Sakuda. Speaking of Uto, was watching a random show from a few years back and Uto was supposed to have a breakout match to be the next challenger for the title but the crowd ends up booing him and chanting kaere or "go home" by the end of the match. Then he attacks Isami post match to show some fire and build up his challenge, but the lighttubes don't break on his spot and the crowd boos him out of the building. I've literally never seen that in all the years I've watched Big Japan. Seems like the crowd wasn't into him compared to his teammate Drew Parker who was busting his ass and felt like Uto was a forced act. I also read an interview said he didn't really want to do deathmatches, but that he was willing to do them since he felt like if you're in Big Japan you need to try to succeed in all areas. Maybe that's why? To me lately Big Japan really lacks that "tamashii" they love to advertise, and reading Kasai's book had even more of a depressing effect on me. Last year when they were crowd funding it kinda hit me that if my favorite company from 2005-2015 were to close, I wouldn't be devastated, since Freedoms does what they do better. They didn't crowd fund/pay bills for the talent that carried their company like Kasai, Ishikawa, Kawakami, Yoshihito, and more, but now want us to crowd fund because of Covid. Maybe I'm harsh, but it was hard for me to care. They probably won't fold for a long time though, just like when people on this board wanted Z1 to fold over a decade ago so we could see their talent have better competition in NOAH and wherever else, BJW folding would make Freedoms a lot better but it likely won't happen, and they'll probably spawn a spin-off promotion instead anyway. I watched Tsukamoto vs. Hoshino from February and it was so boring and lifeless, even besides the quiet crowd, it just felt like such a poor effort. Tsukamoto is now their champ, and even when he was first getting into deathmatches and needed that star making, breakout match, he never really had one. Then he left the company, got all bloated, and has seemingly fallen into a championship role by attrition. I can't say I've ever looked forward to a match of his. Before that was a mid 40's flabby Fujita and it was so sad juxtaposed with a young, prime Toru Sugiura killing it as Freedom's champ. Anyway, I'll stop my rambling thoughts/roasting of this company, but their booking decisions and deathmatch philosophy continue to baffle me.
  13. Bahu posted a translation of Jun Kasai's book. It's a rough translation but it's all pretty comprehensible and very interesting http://fmwwrestling.us/Kasai1.html Read it in like an hour, easy read despite the choppy language, some of my favorite little bits -Seeing Cannibal Holocaust in theaters as a young kid with his mom -First impression of Ryuji Ito "A serious bean sprout wearing glasses" -The only two guys he's seen to have an "alien" like deathwish like him - Masashi Takeda and Toshiyuki Sakuda -Not really knowing anything going into the Un F'n Believable match, after the match he's getting cleaned up and some girl is dancing around topless. Then Justice Pain drives him home and gives him painkillers and he has to pull over to puke -I thought he had stopped the balcony dives due to injuries, but apparently Shin-kiba and Korakuen Hall banned them. Says Shin-kiba is a crazier dive than Korakuen. -I honestly have zero recollection of his scaffold match with Miyamoto, and he apparently loved it and doesn't like that it's not well remembered either. -Kayfabe is mostly kept here, so I can't fully tell, but it almost sounds like he went into business for himself to call out Ito and get the match booked that he had been trying for 7 years. Pretty insane. Big Japan seemingly hates making money and pushing stars. BJW in general comes off bad here, and as he conveys there's a lot of wrestlers there who are held back from wrestling the deathmatches they want. He saw how Sakuda was being discouraged from going all out and managed to influence him to become a freelancer. You can tell guys like Sakuda love doing cutting edge crazy matches like they can in Freedoms and GCW. BJW is almost like CZW now. -Sounds like he didn't make a reliable living till maybe after the Ito match, which is crazy when you see how over he was in the years leading up to that. Has to work a lot of part time jobs when he's injured, and has opted out of many knee surgeries. -Memory is getting worse, doesn't feel comfortable doing more acting work since he can't remember lines well. -Doesn't remember anything after getting powerbombed through the ring in his finals match against Masada (2015?), the only time he can think of he lost significant memory -Toru Sugiura panic quit deathmatches around 2013, got back into them in 2018 and is now one of the best in the world at them
  14. Just beat Dark Souls 3. So now since January 1st I’ve done Dark Souls, Bloodborne, Demon’s Souls, Jedi Force Order (Soulslike I guess), and now DS3. It definitely has better combat than the originals, but not as fun as Bloodborne. Especially without Bloodborne’s rally system I never see a need to parry and risk the consequences. It’s partly that I got güd and partly that I know how to make an OP build, but this was definitely the easiest of these games to beat. One shotted many of the bosses and nothing besides the Nameless King took more than 5 tries. Level design also reminds me Bloodborne, much bigger and individualized spaces compared to DS1, but less interconnected, even more so than BB. I love how many different play styles there are tho, will definitely have to go back and try a magic based character. Picked up Sekiro on sale afterward and have enjoyed the first few hours, tho I still have to internalize the mechanics more. But then the other day I started playing Dark Souls on my switch just to try fucking around with a Pyromancer build and am now fully sucked in again. It just never gets old.
  15. I played Advance Wars a little when I was younger and really want to play it again, but it’s kind of hitting me how tired I am of Nintendo’s remake formula and how costly they are. World Ends with You is another I want to play but don’t want to spend 60 bucks on. SMT3 just came out and is also 50 bucks. They’re never on sale, whereas I have a giant backlog of PS4 games I find on sale for dirt cheap. You get a few minor graphical updates for a major price update. And I really dislike the graphics, which just drives me to the originals even more. It reminds me of Pokémon how when they went to 3D it felt like it sucked all the charm out of the design. It really just encourages me to pirate, I wish they would put GBA and DS games on virtual console a lot more frequently, because the second hand price is so insanely inflated. I’ll probably end up buying a customized backlit GBA and flash cart soon.
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