Thursday, July 24, 2014

Mario Wii Remote Plus

A while ago I was cleaning up and organizing a desk of mine when I came upon a pile of gift cards.  I was excited because it was like finding cash on the street because gift card balances don’t expire anymore.  Unfortunately there was one black sheep in the group which was an EB Games gift cards.  In case you don’t know, EB Games is a store that sales video game consoles, games and accessories.  Regrettably it’s a store that a lot of gamers hate because the staff can be rude, their prices can be overpriced, and their trade-in value can be a rip-off.
Ignoring all of that I figured I might as well use the gift card, so I decided to get a Wii Remote Plus.  Not to digress too much but when I went into EB Games, I noticed that the Mario version of the Wii Remote was near the ceiling so I had to ask an employee to get it for me.  The funny part was when he asked me which one I wanted I told him I wanted the Mario version Wii Remote and he said, which one was that.  I said it was the red box, lol.  Seriously, how can someone work in a video game store and not know who Super Mario is?  Anyway…
The thing I like about Nintendo is when they release a special edition console, or accessory they go all out.  Starting with the box design of this Mario Wii Remote Plus you can see a nice picture of the remote, and of Mario with his name (just in case an EB Games employee doesn’t know who Mario is).  Once I opened the box and removed the remote, I was blown away by how bright and vibrant the red was on the remote.  This remote works just as well as the regular Wii Remote Plus, but has the special colorway and graphics (so there’s no need to review how it works).  The only shortcoming about this special edition is the printed logos (such as the “M”) which I feel will rub off after use.  Other than that this is a jewel from Nintendo that every collector should own.
Nintendo Accessories:

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Nike Court Tour

I’ve been officially collecting sneakers for over a decade.  What started as a way to relive my childhood soon became something dark and consumptive.  Initially buying sneakers was fun because they were releasing retros I always wanted, that were made with quality materials, and that were easy to obtain.  However over time the fun was taken out when sneakers became difficult to obtain and expensive.  I carelessly kept buying those sneakers thinking it would make me happy, when in reality it only brought me sadness.
Fortunately I eventually opened my eyes to the garbage I was buying and decided to change my sneaker habits.  My evolution of collecting sneakers has led to the belief that collecting sneakers is most fun when they’re easy to obtain and are affordable.   The best way to do this is to shop at outlets and in the clearance department in stores.  In a way it’s almost like reliving the good old days of when you walked into a store and discovered a new sneaker.
My latest sneaker pickup that I’m happy about was purchased at a Sears outlet.  This sneaker is called the Nike Court Tour.  The uppers come in red canvas, while the bottom sole is white rubber.  The first time I saw them I thought they looked like Eric Koston’s SB’s, because of the similar silhouette.  Despite not being Koston’s they’re still pretty nice and comfortable.  What I love about them the most is the bright red color because it matches well with a pair of jeans.  As for size, well, I usually wear a 10.5, but I got them in a 10 because they’re made for wide feet.  Overall, I’m very satisfied with this sneaker and especially the price.  So don’t be afraid to go sneaker hunting because you never know what you might find.
Brand: Nike
Name: Nike Court Tour
Year: 2012
Product Code: 505801 610
Additional: Red canvas material on the uppers
Nike:

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Lost

Okay so Lost is a show I never thought I would watch.  Reasons to not watch included; it was made for a TV network so it probably will be boring, the story of being stuck on an island has been done before (Lost Flight [1970], Gilligan’s Island), the idea of a monster is too Sci-Fi for me, Matthew Fox was boring on Party of Five so he’ll also be boring here, and I don’t like shows where you need to see every episode from the start to understand the story.  So those were my initial reasons for not watching Lost years ago.  But then things started to change in the way I watched TV shows.  First off, TV shows actually began to tell compelling stories that were addictive, and second the internet allowed people to watch a whole season or series all at once.  Like most people I became hooked to most of these binge shows such as The Wire, Dexter, and Breaking Bad.

Lost on the other hand was still a show I refused to watch.  But then one day I heard the news that J.J. Abrams would direct the new Star Wars franchise, and suddenly I became filled with reasons to watch Lost.  The biggest reason being; how much I enjoyed Star Trek (2009), a franchise I never thought I would like.  With my faith that Abrams was special, I decided to finally watch Lost and see what all the hype was about.  I was also hoping to gain a good perception of what to expect from Abrams in the next Star Wars films.

Now that I have watched it, I have to say I didn’t like the ending.  From the very first episode Lost is a show that revolves around finding answers to mysteries.  And while the final episode was supposed to answer all the mysteries, I was disappointed by them and also confused.  Yet despite not liking the ending, I found the brilliance of Lost not in knowing the answers to mysteries, but in the thrill of finding them.  Lost should be praised for the rush of an adventure that included fear, mystery, laughter, hate, love and heroism.  This rush is a result of well constructed diverse characters within a story that is complex, interconnected and intelligent.  I thoroughly enjoyed Lost, and highly recommend it because it gives us a glimpse of what to expect from Abrams in the future.  The Force is with Abrams!

Lost Wiki:

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

FIFA International Soccer, FIFA ‘94

With the current Brazil World Cup happening right now, I wanted to reflect on a soccer game I used to love as a kid; FIFA International Soccer.  The game was published by Electronic Arts in 1993, and I played it on my Sega Genesis.  The game had an isometric view (I had to look that up), that gave gamers a new angle to view a soccer game.  This allowed for an almost 3D like effect that opened up a perspective to distinctly see what your players were doing.  As crisp as the graphics were, so were the controls because they were simple to learn and allowed you to do what you wanted to do.  It didn’t take much time to master the game, but once you did it created an intense environment to play against your friends (up to 4 people at a time).
Other great features about this game were the sound of the crowd cheering, a coin toss before a game, the ability to choose a field type, the picture-in-picture screen that allowed you to view where you wanted a long kick or throw to go, instant replay (allowing you to gloat and mock your opponent), and the ability to shove and slide tackle a player.  I would like to emphasize this last ability because it was similar to the same fighting option found in EA’s NHLPA Hockey '93.  It was EA’s inclusion of details like this that made their sports games so revolutionary and enjoyable.
This game was also significant for me because I got it around the same time the USA World Cup was happening, so I was able to actually see my favorite teams play such as Brazil and Argentina. Though admittedly when I did master the game and had won the World Cup several times using Brazil/Argentina, my next challenge was to try to win it using the worst team; Qatar.  By doing that I was able to get so many replays out of that game by adding a new challenge.  And this is what makes FIFA International Soccer so memorable for me and why I will always regard it as the best soccer video game ever made.

FIFA video games Wiki: