Recent Movie Reviews


Deep Cut - Kinetic Typography Deep Cut - Kinetic Typography

Rated 2.5 / 5 stars

If you claim to give me uncomfortable truth, then allow me to give you a piece of uncomfortable truth as well.

The animation, the typography, is well done. Maybe not as dynamic as RicePirate's 'Dot Dot Dot', but still clear, and eye-popping, and sombre for the tone of the actual thing.

I will thank you for the truth of Confucius having tried to right wrongs in the people around him, I will thank you for that. I will thank you for pointing out the inner 'comfortable' nature that we tend to slink into as persons.

Aside from that, it gets into some pretty incoherent rambling. I could make neither head or tail of the structure apart from a few glimpses into the subject matter. It changed so quickly between moments. I only got a few sections staying in my head: Confucius' death, governments claiming to be one thing but doing another, people being comfortable, and 'fuck you'. All that didn't even make sense when put together, of course, because there are meant to be things that join them, but they were joined so loosely.

Plus, it fails to take into account:

1) Confucius may have been a good man for his time, but there are many principles of his that are unconscionable in our modern understanding. For example, North Korea is basically a dictatorship BASED ON Confucian thought, and at the helm of it is a complete subordination to one's parents, because you don't choose your parents. That same logic basically causes the Kims to stay in power. That sort of logic, applied in a lesser extent, causes children to not be their own persons and I have had friends who were subjected to that sort of logic, obviously for worse. It justified all sorts of abuse in the name of parents being the 'bosses'. You aren't meant to speak out if they do wrong, because they're your parents -- and that's the long and short of it. And yet, what justifies Confucius saying 'obey your parents like that' and then, speaking out against his country and presumably the Emperor of China?

2) You forget the people who refuse to be comfortable, and go out of their way to make things better for people, only to get fired, murdered, or killed. You put a blanket blame on everyone without realising that some of the people watching... are *precisely* those people who got clandestinely fired, gotten rid of, abused, tortured. I speak as someone who grew up outside of the big G7 or G20 cities and experienced all this first-hand, who had publicly spoken out about things like this, and had to flee due to fear of what would happen to me.

I don't know if you're doing this to really make people better, or to just hurl blame at people for the sake of doing so. I cannot gauge your intention from just watching this. But the strawman in this video is so big, it's the elephant in the room.

Get the full extent of your facts right, and then maybe, just maybe, you'll be on to something at last.


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Mighty No. 9 on Wii U !! Mighty No. 9 on Wii U !!

Rated 2 / 5 stars

Trite animation, trite humour. I know memes are meant to express what's going on in the here and the now but man, overused much?

That intro took way too long as well. It would have done a lot better if the animation was more lifelike, the music didn't so much determine how that boy was clenching his fist and putting the game into the console. I mean, if you're excited about a game, you wouldn't take that long to clench your fist while seated down like that, for example.


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Inspired Inspired

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

The video appeals to all of us who have submitted some content here worth something, indeed. Animation is fluid and gets the point across really well, and no voices were needed to convey it. Well done!

Music was a bit generic but to be fair, I think it *may* have been a good call doing so given the amount of musicians on here, I don't know.


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Recent Game Reviews


Monster Eater Monster Eater

Rated 4 / 5 stars

It's a 2048 clone, and quite an addictive one at that. Docked a star because of a bug that's gone uncorrected; any score above 20K causes the game to freeze. You can still submit scores, but you cannot make any moves as soon as you get a certain kind of monster associated with 20K scores.



Crypt Shyfter: Frostfall Crypt Shyfter: Frostfall

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

It seems to be working fine.

A lot of what could make this game better, and more immersive, boils down to the aesthetics at the end of the day -- which I'm sure you're well aware of. The writing is quite good as it is. Though I'd like to pitch some suggestions for the next one, if you do another:

1) I'm not sure how well Twine takes to drawn backgrounds, avatars and music. But if you manage to find a way ahead with that, that would add to its immersiveness.

Which reminds me; Hyptosis also sometimes does text-based adventures, but I'm not sure what he uses, and if he's ever used Twine before. But considering he's done fantasy art for, and written, games similar to this, maybe ask him for pointers?

2) I know this is going to take multiple rolls based on the random die and the choices you make, but I was beginning to wonder if outside of all these, you could have a joke ending? As it stands, there are three options per query / question / impasse that you arrive at, which is alright to start with, but I could very well imagine that in a future game, you would have certain questions that have two simple Y / N answers (or two options just like that), and some that would have a myriad of options (perhaps up to six?), including the most stupid ones.

Fallout Shelter, believe it or not, has some really funny option choices in quests and that's partly where I'm coming from; the other part is from playing some text-based adventures here on NG. But at this moment in time, I felt that the options were a bit too straightforward: Best ending / Normal ending / Bad ending. For example, we have not yet got the gem that is the Dog Ending of Silent Hill 2, which, given the possibilities in a fantasy game, could very well happen. XD

I don't know how many endings you were planning in here, but hopefully this could pave the way for some really nice sequels to come.


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KungFuSpaceBarbarian responds:

Awesome, thank you very much for the advice! I will definitely look into backgrounds and music for future games and talk to Hyptosis about his games.

I agree I will definitely need to include a few more endings in future games. As for joke endings, did you unlock the secret room by proving your worth? The endings triggered in their aren't necessarily joke endings, but really just a collection of hilarious ways to kill the villain using odd-ball items.

Thanks again for playing and sharing your thoughts!!


Deterministic Dungeon Deterministic Dungeon

Rated 4 / 5 stars

Considering this is an RNG, I was wondering why there were no items to speed up and slow down the counters. Anyway.

The art was alright, and the gameplay got me sucked in during the first few levels. I think the trouble with this is that you'd be more likely to grind in the upper levels before going down. Tedium at its worst. I love the odd weapons in this game. A spork? Maybe a balloon animal? It'd be nice to include these in the field journal as well, to give us players a sense of accomplishment. And then have a New Game Plus feature so that if we're gunning for the 100%, we could have a few more tries on the gachapon machine.

The music is quite nice. Calming, in a lot of places. You wouldn't expect that of a dungeon, but it works.

The gameplay itself, on the other hand, raises questions like

1) How is it that the RNG moves four spaces once, and five spaces another when I time it to the precise second? This should NOT be happening. Unless you scrambled it instead of letting the selector move from top left to bottom right, this shouldn't be happening.

2) The skip function in making room layouts should be just as random as the making of the room itself. EVERY SINGLE TIME I skipped, the boss wasn't happy with his placement. There shouldn't be impossible scenarios like this every time the Skip button is pressed.

Alright game, I suppose.


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PestoForce responds:

There are buffs to slow down the chooser, keep playing! Also, every weapon is in the field journal, look in the "special" section tab on the left.

Recent Audio Reviews


Glitchtale - Bete Noire Glitchtale - Bete Noire

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

Already from the beginning I sense a very dark, eerie, foreboding vibe about this. Then 0:44 changes the atmosphere from ambient and ups the pace quite a bit. You have a good sense of buildup here.

1:16 sounds to me like I'm escaping from something trying to devour me (or a stage trying to devour me). There's an otherworldly, alien feel to it. That lead that comes in after this point might as well sound like you're having Hatsune Miku sing this; it brings that to mind for me, with those grace notes. It feels soulful in comparison to the rest of the piece. Interesting juxtaposition. One that doesn't sound jarring, either. It seems to fit quite well. ^_^

2:17 sounds... a bit bare for my taste, but everything has its place.

2:40 is back to the soulful melody vs the alien background. 3:03 turns it up quite a bit; it sounds more foreboding than soulful there.

I have no complaints about the mixing. Everything seems to be in order there.

3:40-odd, feels like an abrupt ending and 3:59, an even more abrupt ending. No distortion noises; it just pops out. It felt quite strange to me. Did you intend for this to loop?

----

One thing's for sure: you HAVE certainly upped your quality. I'm nitpicking here and there but otherwise, well done. I quite liked it.


NyxTheShield responds:

Yeah ie ffed up the ending, I think I uploaded the wrong file buuuuuuuut it kinda worked hahahaha Glad you liked it!


Atmosphere Atmosphere

Rated 5 / 5 stars

There's something Yoko Shimomura-esque about this work. Like the Kingdom Hearts gummi ship sequences, only made a lot more awesome.

Outside of the piano sounding like it's been synthesised, everything else has its proper place. The atmosphere befits the title of the piece. For 2 short minutes, you managed to vary it sufficiently through the intro, through the middle and all the way to the end. And when its instrumentation is lush like 0:44, that tends to be my favourite bit of the piece. I love the way it comes out, uplifts me.

By the way: this is drum and bass, or more fitting of DnB rather than House. Also: for some reason I could very much imagine a Vocaloid singing on top of this. If you know any friends who can use Vocaloids, I would be very pleased to hear a version of this with some sweet synth vocals on it. There are a few people on NG whom I know use it, if you're interested -- if you'd like, lemme know and I'll link you to them!


RainbowPikachu responds:

Alright :)


Joy Ride Joy Ride

Rated 2.5 / 5 stars

Since it's short, I should be able to tell in a bit of detail what's good and what isn't as much.

Your mixing has improved since I last heard from you. With the exception of one particular section (0:51 etc.), everything seems to have its proper place in the mix.

I'm not sure what to make of the string-like pad in the background. It sounds...... I have no idea, like something that belonged in some cheesy song, which is probably not what you were going for here. There is always an appeal for picked clean electric guitar in things like this, but that's just what I imagine here -- you could perhaps imagine something else that sounds as awesome in there.

0:51 is a bit of an oddity. What are you going for here? 4/4? 12/8? You've got what seem to be drum loops that do a sort of 12/8 beat on a 4/4 song. On the one hand, you have straight 4/4 and on the other hand, you have a 12/8 beat. Now, done well, it could provide for interesting rhythmic patterns. Done not so well, as in this case, you're left wondering 'what on earth happened here?'. On my second listen, I noticed that other things were clashing too -- basslines against melody, for example.

1:06 keeps things simple and brings it all down, of course. Your resolution of this piece is good.

The main troubles with this piece are that:

1) it is very short -- which wouldn't really be a trouble in and of itself but it is compounded by the second below, i.e.

2) it is too repetitive.

We listen to things and they're varied a fair bit; good songs tend to vary in texture, in loudness, or even in thematic material. If a song is too short, or too long for the average, it needs to have enough to make it interesting.

You've nailed the loud-soft of this piece, but not so much the texture, and most certainly not the thematic material. I was left feeling a bit let down at the end when 1:06 came in and the first question that came to mind was, "what, that's it?" I feel as though you were going for the car advert vibe, almost, and some of them do it really well. But this one feels underwhelming to me.

My recommendations: study your favourite pieces. Try to write down, describe in your own words, what makes a piece awesome. And train yourself not to say "oh because it's awesome and I have no words." Yes, I understand some songs can leave us breathless. But once that feeling passes -- we are able to try and imagine what led us to feeling that way. Was it the instrumentation? Was it the tempo changes? Was it the themes, or the soft and loud? Was it something else, like key changes or otherwise technical stuff that most songs wouldn't do? Or was it because the song was simple, but effective -- and if so, how?

Hopefully, doing this, you may be able to focus your learning, and find the areas you would like to start improving on first.


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Spikrin responds:

thanks for the constructive critism! Im still working on my music, and getting better, i recently got inspired by renosance, by home. i want to make a song maybe similar to that song in some way.

Recent Art Reviews


Red Shirts Promo Red Shirts Promo

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

I remember commenting on one of your other pieces about a lack of clarity, and it is present here too. However: I really like how you've divided it into comic strip panels a lot clearer here. I have a slightly better idea of what to make of this picture. Some bits are quite surrealist (those sharks up top, for example).


AdventVoice responds:

Well the clarity needed for this piece is found in the actual book: Red Shirts by John Scalza's
He was the one that came up with Ice Sharks. He said it.
From his words I just could not get out of my head what an Ice Shark would look like.
realistically: did not make me happy: A shark swimming in ice would not make you think of an Ice shark. You would think of an Orca. At least I would have.
In this man's world the bathroom was open to all genders and creatures and everyone made it out just fine. So I was wondering if in reality we could?


Loving your fighter Loving your fighter

Rated 3 / 5 stars

I feel your pain. My own father was one of these so-called "real men" and spoke with his fists to me, almost exclusively.

It's hard for me to make out what the figures in the art are doing, either because of a lack of clarity in the outlines or the colours, I cannot tell which.


AdventVoice responds:

Lack of clarity will be fixed over time when I find better mediums. The messages will get better too!
This is only the beginning.
There is a more elaborate explanation found at www.adventgradepress.com
In short:
Scene 1: The man and woman both love the dream the comes from the fight, the idea of money and the spotlight.
Scene 2: When there is no crowd, each has to weigh how much the fame, the money, the spotlight is worth it to them.
Scene 3: She is alone, she asked him to stay, don't fight, who cares, "ill love you, when or loose, leave it all, let the dream die, just don't fight."
Scene 4: The bell rings
Scene 5: He is hit a lot.
Scene 6 She can not take it, she can't look, he face getting hit is not worth it.
Scene 7 HE is winning, everything is going to be fine, it is worth it, He is so strong, can't wait to go home!
Scene 8: the Bell rings and no matter what we love our fighters. We love the strong man and strong woman.
The story of my life.


'Empress of Tides' 'Empress of Tides'

Rated 5 / 5 stars

This entry is easily the best I've seen in this entire competition to date.

The proportions are on point, the shading is on point, and best of all, there's a beautiful contrast up the front that sets Ariel apart. That is easily the most striking part of the piece, the bit that draws me in. Don't get me wrong, everything else looks accomplished too -- but you've really got a hook in this piece, pardon the pun. (get it, hook, trident...?)

Just a stylistic choice I guess, one that doesn't make me want to dock points but I just feel... Flounder looks awfully like Flotsam and Jetsam. I'm not really a fan of that. That being said, just how Ariel looks after having taken Triton's place is imaginative. I don't know if for good, or for evil; I wouldn't be able to tell by her garb, her pose and her seeming enjoyment for all things scaly and bat-winged.

Anyway, props to you. Well done!


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Djoresh responds:

Thank you for your lofty words and feedback. Personally I feel the proportions could be better and I was clueless about the lighting. (nice pun btw ;)

I felt the same way about the look of Flounder, It was a choice to keep him somewhat prehistoric and evil looking, as he would be like a pet/protector for Ariell. My mindset was the level one cute baby versions of dragons in games in contrast to their bad ass full level evolution.

I see what you mean with the bat like garb, I was aiming for a see trough fin-like protection, but I guess I failed that part, I didn't really had in mind if she was good or evil. I wanted her to look powerful and someone to not get on bad terms with. If she is good or evil I wanted to leave up to the imagination of the viewer.

Thanks again, and good luck in the competition with your kingdom hearts piece.