Thursday, May 5, 2016

Book Review - A Certain Magical Index (New Testament) Volume 15

Well, hey all. My job has been taking much of my free time. It's a great place to work, but the finances are going to be challenging for a bit. Also, my camera has been on the fritz, which puts a further damper on my ability to post. That said, I am still trying to put hobby related content out there.

That said, what I CAN do is post a few book reviews for things I have read on my kindle lately. The new Index book, for instance. I wish I had stuck to my guns and done reviews of all of these, as I read them, but whatever. Volume 15 tells of the continuing clash between Touma (with the "Imagine Breaker") and Kamisato, his sort of evil twin (with the "World Rejecter"). It also follows up on a promise Kamachi made back in the afterword of Volume 12 to include more Misaka. This is good, because, let's all be real, Misaka is the best character in this series.

  • A break for normalcy. I feel like the gentle comedic segment at the beginning of this installment is important, since volume 13 and 14 were pretty non-stop action. Othinus is still a chibi-goddess, Index is still a bottomless hole, and Sphinx is still trying to eat Othinus. Low brow, easy laughs all around.
  • Railgun! Yeah, so I already mentioned it, but there is a good amount of old Mikoto Misaka in volume 15. She's my favorite character, and since I came to the series all out of order with the Railgun anime, she's still the biggest part of the franchise for me. While a lot of her segments are fairly melancholy or bittersweet, it's still nice to see more of her.
  • That setup. You all know I'm not one for spoilers, but the ending of this one is setting up for something big! It makes me very excited. I like to think I know what's going to happen, but this author has sent me for a loop enough times to know to expect the unexpected.
  • Kamisato without a clue. As much as I love so many of Kamachi's characters over the 30 odd volumes of Index (not to mention his other series like Zashiki Warashi, Heavy Object, and the Circumstances Leading to Waltraute's Marriage), I really think Kamisato is lame. He's set up to be Touma's twisted darker counterpart, but he really just seems like a villain with no reason. "I want revenge on the gods that made all women love me!" "Wait they're all dead? Then I'll just annoy and attack Touma!" Even as every single stated motivation for his actions is removed or negated, he just continues on. What is he even after anymore? He lies and uses underhand tactics, then gets offended when everyone calls him a liar and cheater. He let's other people clean up his problems, then stabs them in the back while they're doing it. 
I really just don't like Kamisato. As much as I love what Kamachi is doing with the other characters in this arc,  I can't wait to see Kamisato in the rearview mirror. That said, I really want big things in the next volume. Please Holy Kamachi, hear my plea!

Okay, back out of rabid fan reader mode. There really was a lot of good stuff in this volume, if you are willing to overlook typical light novel tropes such as girls wearing see through raincoats and gimmicky superpowers. The Index/Railgun universe has always been pretty heavily steeped in that sort of thing, so if you've gotten this far, you'll probably be okay.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

My Cool Wife And The Cure For The Wants

In which I, CounterFett, once again proclaim my wife to be the best wife, and extol her various glorious attributes. She's smart, she's pretty, and she is, to whit, awesome. So, it's been quite a week. After Mrs. Fett getting sick and needing to go to the hospital last weekend (she'll be fine, but it's been a rough week with me working ten hour days, and her recovering), the fact that Tuesday was my birthday sort of took a back seat.

Then I come home from work, and find this nondescript box sitting at my desk. "What's this?" I ask, quite reasonably befuddled.

"It's your birthday present." My wife replies, "You said you wanted that, right?"

It's the Cold Steel Battle Mace! The holy grail of things I have wanted but been unable to obtain for the entire duration of fatherhood! I missed out on these, because Cold Steel only offered them in the catalog for a few months, and you could only get them online, etc, etc. There were just more important things to spend the money on at the time (baby food, grown up food, rent, diapers, gas). Times are still a bit rough with the new job not paying the same as the last, but this gives me the will to move forward anew! Anew I say!

There will be more posts of this nature, brimming with more (deserved) praise of my glorious bride and glorious new tool of destruction. I'll have to assemble it and whatnot, so look forward to that!

Saturday, April 23, 2016

The Wants - Cold Steel Polish Mace

I have been waiting faithfully for Cold Steel to re-release their Battle Mace from years past. I missed out on it as it was simply not offered in the catalog for very long. I still want a battle mace, come to thing of it, but the new Polish mace from their Man At Arms line looks pretty spiffy too. I would like if the head were less spherical, and made of multiple circular flanges instead, but nothing is perfect.

Now, my fascination with maces is pretty simple. You hit things with them. Periodically, my wife wants me to smash things, as her family uses our house as a sort of 'Final Destination' for second hand furnishings. What happens when we overflow and have to discard a bunch of crap on the cheap? Well, first we try to sell it. Then we try to give it away. If neither of those options suffice, I smash it to kindling with and axe, pry bar, or what have you. A good stout mace has long been near the top of my wish list for this task. Sure it's less practical than a heavy pry bar, but it's got so much more style.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Cool Stuff My Wife Made - Perler Bead Edition

So, my wife was bored and wanted to make a bunch of perler bead stuff, so she asked me to send her any pixel art I had on my computer (mwahahaha!), and she made a few things that she and I had been saving. I hope she stays in that mood and makes more stuff, because these so far are pretty cool.

 First up is the Christmas Tree sword from Terraria. God I love that game!

Next up is this bunny she made for my little girl. Since she loves bunnies. Duh.

This, believe it or not, is a single panel of my clan's tartan. It's pretty awesome you can do this in perler, since that's about the only way one can get any Gunn tartan.

This is a pair of sunglasses my daughter wanted, so that it can be glued to a headband, so that it always looks like she has glasses pushed up on her hair...I...guess?

Friday, April 8, 2016

Toys For Wargaming - Pirates & Skeletons

Hey all, Counterfett here. Posting today because I am off work at my new job, and let me tell you has it been one eventful week!

But anyway, I have been meaning to snag one of these for a while, because I thought I had done so long ago, and that I just had to find it in my garage. Then my wife tells me that the time I think I bought it, we actually returned it to the shelves because we weren't getting anything else, and it's not worth going through the line at Toys R Us.

So I went and bought more.

These soldier buckets are kind of pricey (by my reasoning anyway, since Army Men used to be the cheapest toy category), so I finally broke down and got it, because I wanted a cheaper solution to an army of Undead than LEGO skeletons. I do have a few LEGO skeletons, but I got a pile of these guys. It's a fun set, you get a pier/dock, some treasure chests, several cannon, and a pile of Pirates and skeletons.

My son and daughter have messed around with these a bit, as you see in the photos, and I can tell you they come kid approved!

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Weekly Update - Going Back To Work Edition

Hey all, Counterfett here. I figured I would just pop in and let you all know I'm not dead. I raise this point because there have been genuine inquiries. I have not been up to much, hence the lack of posting. I have actual been a bit ill, as has my wife, which means there has been a stunning dearth of content worthy hobby activities.

But there is some promising stuff going on here.

  1. Sorting my novel files. So, I have a kindle, and I am a voracious reader (usually). Since I have been home while unemployed, I have been getting most of my information daily allowance by computer, but since I start work again on Monday (YAY!) I figured I should sort and reload, so to speak. This took me awhile, as some required format changes mean I have duplicate copies of practically everything, spread across multiple folders and devices. Figuring out what was where, and if I had read it was...challenging.
  2. Anime. You're going to have a heart attack and die of not surprised, right? I recently finished the Valkyria Chronicles anime (as well as the first and second games), in addition to finally wrapping up season two of the GATE anime. I might review that one a little later.
  3. Game World. My DIY game world work has stalled for the moment. I went into that in the post last week, but -sigh- no progress on that front since. I think a little time away should help crystallize what I want out of this, and hopefully 'clearing the palette' will allow me to come back at it without some other authors' work leaking in.
  4. Work. I sort of mentioned this above, but I am starting a new job Monday. Now, lest ye think I have been sitting on my keister unemployed all this time, I actually got offered this job in the beginning of November, and the background check only completed last week. So, I am a bit antsy about getting started and becoming a contributing member of society once more. In any event, much of this week has been devoted to getting clothes, a briefcase, and other necessary gear for starting. 
Wish me luck, and thanks for bearing with me!

Monday, March 28, 2016

The Siberian Unicorn

This is all over facebook right now, so apologies if you've already come across it. I wish these weren't extinct. My wife might actually convince me to go riding with her for a change.

It kind of reminds me of Dragon Age Inquisition, and all of the cool mounts you can get, like the Bog Unicorn and Giant War Nug. Maaaaaan, now I want to play Dragon Age!