Japanese Dating Guide

Dating is not about finding someone to complete you. Dating is about a complete person finding another complete person to share life. References. Amy Stanley (2007) Adultery, Punishment, and Reconciliation in Tokugawa Japan Journal of Japanese Studies, Vol. 33, No. 2. pp. 309-335. Back to Japan (2011). Japanese Dating Culture. Generally in our dating guides we like to include addresses, but we don’t speak a lick of Japanese and doubt most you do either. Search on Google Maps and you can find all of these locations. Another good way to try to meet singles in Tokyo is to go to some of the meet up events you can find at that link. The best free Asian dating sites give newbies the knowledge that online dating has a good ending. Sometimes real Asian dating sites help a person gain faith in the reliability of the service. The essence of virtual relationships is that the person on the other side of the screen is waiting for someone special. 100% Free Online Japanese Dating, Personal Ads, and Matchmaking Service for Singles at japanesefriends.net. Visit us to find your love for free. The Ultimate Guide & Tips for Dating Japanese Women How to get a Japanese girlfriend? What to expect from Japanese women. Discover how amazing it is to date a Japanese woman. Understanding the Japanese Women. It is essential to understand Japanese women before starting to date. Japanese Women Only. 99% of our female members are Japanese who were born or grew up in Japan. If you are searching for a 'Traditional' and 'Authentic' Japanese woman, this is the right place. Personalized Matchmaking. We base our system on one on one consultations which covers all members’ personal needs. Japanese Women Dating. If you are fond of meeting Japanese women, this article will become your guide. There are so many white and black guys who find Asian ladies extremely sexy and hot and if you are one of them, keep reading the article and find the names of the best dating services to join and get acquainted with Japanese single ladies from ... Premium International Japanese Dating. Started in 2005, JapanCupid is part of the well-established Cupid Media network that operates over 30 reputable niche dating sites. As one of the largest Japanese dating sites, we have thousands of Japanese women signing up everyday interested in meeting someone like you. Japanese Dating Guide: Need To Knows and Tips in 2020. by Chelsea King. Have you ever dreamed of dating a Japanese woman? Did you know that it is entirely different to date a Japanese woman? Get to know more about it by reading the information provided below. Quick Navigation. Dating Experience is Different for Foreign Women and Men. If you’ve ever been to Japan you might have noticed that there’s a tremendous number of (often not so handsome) foreign guys walking hand-in-hand with Japanese women. And at the same time, there’s only a very tiny number of foreign (read: non-Asian) women with Japanese men next to ...

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2020.09.22 02:09 alitxtile 140 Years of Jeans (Part I): TCB’s Natural Indigo Tribute to the 1880 Waist-Overalls

140 Years of Jeans (Part I): TCB’s Natural Indigo Tribute to the 1880 Waist-Overalls
This is Part I of a write up on 140 years of Jeans. This part focuses on the 1880 Waist-Overalls along with a review of TCB Jeans’ 1880 inspired version of the pair. Part II will be on a more modern pair of jeans by Versace and will be posted later this year. As always, a good bit of history in the beginning of this (A) followed by the review of TCB Jeans’ pair (B).
The start of this decade represents a number of milestones in the history of jeans as we know them . Levi Strauss’ patent on adding rivets to clothing was granted in 1873 yet it is likely that Levi’s own factory didn’t produce until at the 1880’s and most of the oldest pairs we have to my knowledge date to around the this time or a few years prior. This means this is the 15th time a decade has started with riveted clothing being worn. Perhaps just as importantly, this year marks the 140th anniversary of the expiration of Levi’s Strauss patent allowing other companies to produce riveted clothing. Ultimately, the de-Levi-ification of jeans is representative of just how universal their appeal became, the race was not merely for what new innovation would replace riveted clothing but, critically, on how to perfect riveted clothing itself. 140 years on, denim and jeans show no signs of slowing down and continue to define nearly every culture on the planet. This is probably as good of a time as any to go back and look at how we got here and, specifically, to take a deep look at the jeans that so have captured our hearts. Since much has already been written on the history of denim I wanted to take a slightly different approach. Rather than rehashing what we already know I’ll use newspapers from the late-1800’s and early-1900’s to portray what these jeans meant to people and to recapture stories now lost. TCB’s 1880’s waist overalls, based on jeans from the period, will be my window into relating to these stories so by the end I will transition to some reflections based on these jeans and discussing their fabric, construction, as well as their modern-day appeal and their relationship to modern jeans. Also, keep in mind that the term “overall” didn’t refer only to the bib-overall that we connect it with now but was a loose definition meaning something that would be a protective layer—so a pair of overalls could simply come up to one’s waist just like a pair of jeans.
Natural indigo with left-right construction, deerskin leather patch, copper rivets, steel suspenders buttons, and an iron cinch.
(A) Historical Context
The patent system in the United States by the mid to late 1800’s all manner of creative ways from which to improve clothing. These “improvements” in clothing included adjusting them for various waist sizes, increasing durability in high-stress areas, as well as on methods on measuring, cutting, and maintaining clothing. Theodore Sloan for instance in 1870 was a granted a patent for the application of a strengthening fabric at the knees of pantaloons so they would not wear down so readily. Patrick W. Dolan received a grant in 1868 for a ruler specifically constructed for more “correct” measurements of mens pantaloons.
A little over six months after Jacob W. Davis and Levi Strauss’ applied for a patent on adding rivets to clothing, John D. Ryan was granted a patent on a device for maintaining the shape of pantaloons writing that,
My invention has for its object to furnish a device for stretching pantaloons to remove the bagging at the knees, and the wrinkles in the other parts caused by wear, so that the pantaloons may be made perfectly smooth without its being necessary to send them out every few days to be cleaned and pressed, and which shall be simple in construction and convenient in use.
Who needs shoe-trees when you can have pantaloon-trees:
Looks like there is an outline of a cinch in the top!
It’s the addition of rivets to clothing, of course, that is at the center of the jeans-story. While John Davis and Levi Strauss were aware that rivets had been used to secure shoes, Davis’ application involved adding rivets to the pocket opening of the jeans/pantaloons that were likely to fail under pressure. The button fly here was included in the category of “pocket-opening” as in construction and pressure it was essentially an area where an opening was present. The presence of metal rivets so visible on a piece of clothing was likely a curiosity.
The presence of the rivets was originally proposed as “applicable to pantaloons, overalls, coats, vests, and other garments.” But it was the overalls that would be most receptive to the new riveting technique with their convolvement being a potent combination of both durability and comfort. Overalls had become by the 1880’s the premiere workwear outfit. Companies such as Sweet & Orr produced these overalls for workers and created representations and images highlighting their ruggedness. The following ad shows two men battling over a pair of Sweet & Orr’s overalls (The Abilene reflector. September 11, 1884):
Two (Three?) men brand?
Sweet & Orr was likely one of the first clothing producers to popularize this image and predated Levi’s horse logo with the latter potentially being a case of trying to one-up Sweet & Orr’s human strength driver tug of war game with old fashioned horse-power. Sweet & Orr also owned their own factory for producing overalls while it is unclear how early Levi Strauss did so. So, regardless of whether they were riveted or not overalls quickly became the definition of a rugged and free lifestyle. So many stories in the end of the 19th century were intimately connected to overalls: from marriage to murder, life to death. I have selected a few forgotten stories to help capture what overalls meant. Let’s start with an old professor who lost his job partly due to his refusal to wear anything but dirty overalls.
Stories
The Evening Bulletin in Maysville, Kentucky dated to April 18th, 1888 (Number 126) recounts the curious tale of one Alex E. Cohen. Mr. Cohen had moved to Andover around 1860 from New York where he had been teaching the children of the leading families in the languages. His knowledge of Hebrew literature was so impressive that he was given an assistant position at the Andover Theological seminary. The article continues,
He was a very scholarly man, but the very impersonation of carelessness in dress. It is said of him that he frequently appeared before the dignified divinity students unwashed and collarless, a boot on one foot and a rubber on the other. His favorite pantaloon material was overalling. For his uncleanliness and slovenly attire he was expelled from the seminary.
Mr. Cohen when he first moved to Andover was, per the article, ridiculed for his manner of dress and all sorts of rumors were created about his marriage. After his wife moved to the town the year after him the townspeople were shocked at what a charming woman she was. Both lived together in hermitage for 12 or 13 years.
In Mr. Cohen’s case we can see that the comfort provided by of a worn-down pair of overalls is considerable. And if one could not afford more pants, overalls became the de-facto companions to see one through thick and thin. The “ruggedness” of overalls soon became connected with the definition of plasticity and adaptability. Because the overall could do anything and help its wearer in the tasks of life, it itself became a symbol of openness.
By the early 1900’s its clear that the ability to wear the overall if only during out-door activities was both seen as desirable by women as well in out-door activities and was not by any means only for men. The Sun Francisco Sunday Call from September 27, 1907, for instance, describes a group at the camp of women telegraphers referred to as the overall-girls: “[t]here are lots of [. . .] women in Camp Felton and many of them wear overalls.” We even see here that one woman was not “allowed” to wear overalls by her husband and, due to it, was frustrated. Let us not forget that women were still given the right to vote. There is of course a deep irony in having to be given the permission to don something as adaptable as the overall but it is exactly this tension that gave the symbol strength. Wearing the overall when not allowed was of course what made it an even stronger symbol.
The overalls becoming a symbol for adaptability was not only an issue for rigid gender roles but also for rich and poor. The San Francisco Call from August 7th, 1904 contains a rebuttal against those who saw the overalls as unacceptable for the highest dignity a human should aspire to. One Mr. Hearst, had laid an attack on overalls when seeing a rich man’s son donning them:
Mr. Hearst is of the opinion that a rich man’s son should have an ambition above wearing overalls and learning handicraft. The overalls seem to be the specially offensive and are referred to with a bitterness of expression which we thought could not be excited by that harmless and necessary article of clothing. Mr. Hearst if of the opinion that a rich man’s son should put in his time doing good, elevating his fellow man, as it were, and declares that this Young man in overalls is not fulfilling that high mission. We can see no occasion for all this fuss. Men who have had traces and worn overalls had done many a good job at elevating their fellows, and history asks no question about what they wore, whether trousers or overalls.
In fact, the author continues that wearing of the overalls and working with in the shop “shows a very commendable spirit in a rich man’s son that he desires to join his fellow-men in a workshop, learn their trade, take pot luck with them and train his hands to skill in a useful and honorable occupation.” In fact, it seems that Mr. Hearst was against the exclusiveness of the rick yet, the author states, makes a lapse in his usual view because a “rich youngster has dropped exclusiveness and wears overalls and chews his lunch out of a tin bucket.”
The humble overall because it was so inconspicuous, better yet conspicuously inconspicuous allowed the discussion to shift away from attire and onto the actual character of the person. That of course has commonly been the elephant in the room of fashion. Gianni Versace when interviewed about his distaste for ties stated that:
I have a kind of repulsion to. . . for the things you are obliged to wear. Sometimes they send me out of an restaurant, [saying] why I don’t wear a tie. And inside that restaurant there was even mafioso. You can kill people if you wear a tie. (60 minutes)
Betraying what we feel obliged to wear, in this case, becomes an act of self and social calibration to determine whether the superficiality of our appearance or our actions are weighed more heavily by our peers. The overall because of its humility became the touchstone, the measuring bar for this. I like to think that Mr. Cohen, the overall-women, and the rich man’s son all saw it as an instrument for testing the limits of their own freedom.
There is a danger of course in idolizing the overall or its situation. There were dirty and horrible truths amongst the positives. Overall manufacturing and labor, connected with questions of the rights of the work-force as well as immigrant-labor, was at times convolved with horribly racist movements like those seen in the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882: The act in different stages used Chinese, Korean, Japanese, and other “Asian” groups as scapegoats for the working man or woman’s trouble and clothing manufacturing was used as a way to scare people into thinking their sewing jobs would be taken by immigrants. Ads from the time-period went as far as to mention that their overalls were produced with white-labor. So if overalls were beginning to be representative of freedom or adaptability their construction and the labor behind it was capable of being co-opted or infected by the most abhorrent human vices. Thankfully, it seems that raw denim in the long run, despite attempts to do otherwise, has maintained its boundary breaking character. The development of the raw denim community as diverse as it is, linking different countries, with cottons from all over the world, and styles which mix inspirations from different cultures is something to grow and protect. The overall and jeans by extension continue to be the article of clothing for everyone gender, race, and class—they transcend that which sought to limit them yet. But the history highlights that this requires constant vigilance.
Going back to this history, even when overall-manufacturing was romanticized, as seen in an article in the Sunday Call article titled "Experiences as a worker in an overall factory" from August 12, 1900, we can see that companies were quite interested in maintaining productivity:
Presently my thread got tangled up and pop went another needle. The girl next to me kindly Stopped work and gave me a few pointers. "You must be careful,", said she, "needles count up. and you know we have to buy them, three for a nickel. Just so slow and you're all right. Look out how you turn on the power,. If you break that big wheel band it's two bits. The little one is 20 cents."
The desire to drive down the cost of overalls manifested as pressure put on the sewing ladies who had to buy the needles they broke. The Weekly Crisis of June 2, 1881 contains a call for overalls to be protected from being merely tools for the fundholders:
Five pair of overalls for a dollar, is a creamy paradise for the fundholders. If the fundholder can swap his dollar that is now worth five pair of overalls for a dollar that is worth ten pair, we will be in his “kingdom come.” If five more pair of overalls could be crowded into a dollar, the fundholder’s dollar would be doubled in value, without his doing a strokes of work; but the sewing woman would have to take twice as many stitches to get the dollar. Hostile law has made one man richer by making another poorer, and they call it strengthening the public credit.
Thus the desire for the overall to be a rugged yet cheap article had, in the author’s eyes, only the allure of the public good while in reality creating worst working conditions for the common woman or man. And how valuable a well-fitting, cheap, and durable pair of pants is was taken to its negative extreme in an article in the Chicago Tribune from February 3rd, 1876 titled “Overalls and Murder”.
Since the original story may be too graphic for some I’ll simply summarize: Because “Mrs. Silar Wilder made a pair of overalls too short,” Silas murdered her as well as his father than himself. The full article despite being graphic contains many satirical elements and notes of commentary. It points out that an overall cut too short is essentially like the breeches worn by George Washington. An overall in one point of time that is too short would be considered too long in another. Through such a telling, the “point” of the article is that overalls ought not be taken too seriously, whether too short or too long they are merely tools of utility. Again, such articles were seemingly attempting to push back against the fashionization of the overall. The overall could only be taken seriously if it wasn’t taken too seriously.
There are of course many more stories around overalls that I have left out; many comedic, some some serious, and others horrifying. Why did it capture everyone’s attention in such a manner? If it is because it was a workwear item then the immediate next question is why was it a workwear item? Why did it become a symbol of adaptability that then had to be protected, and continues to have to be, from negatives such as poor pay, class elitism, gender-roles, and racism? To better understand this I wanted to return to the source by wearing a modern-day jeans inspired by the 1880 waist-overalls. I’ll first introduce you to the construction, fit, and fabric of the TCB’s 1880 overalls and then come back to reflecting on where these waist-overalls fit in the modern world.

(B) TCB Jeans Natural Indigo 1880 Waist-Overalls:
What makes the TCB Jeans so unique is while many companies historically have out-sourced their sewing, including Levi’s in the beginning and even now, TCB Jeans is an entirely in-house sewing operation. Where jeans are sewn, how they are sewn, when they are sewn is usually unknown to the consumer. Yet with TCB Jeans this trend is bucked, we can see that Kikk does all the cutting for their items on the third floor of the main building. All the sewing is done in the second floor. Shiba does the hemming for most of the jeans ordered. Matsu the teen handles adding rivets and attaching cinch-backs to jeans. Yuko-Rin sews every prototype for new TCB products. Ryo handles international customers and helps disseminate the knowledge of TCB to an english speaking audience—I learned a lot from his pamphlet on these jeans that describes how they are constructed, I urge everyone to look at it. Master sewists like Tak handle difficult sewing sections. And Miko handles the behind the scene logistics, and, of course, everyone knows Hajime Inoue as the brand’s owner. The team makes up a sort of denim super hero group coming up with ideas for denim, having fabric custom woven for them, cutting and stitching themselves. And the sewing machines, both old and new, are of course a intrinsic part of the designs and construction chosen by TCB Jeans. This integration, as we will see, makes for a remarkably cohesive pair of jeans and allows TCB to recreate exacting details that elevate denim.
The rivets in all their glory
Selvedge X 4, Sewing x 4
The construction on the 1880’s waist-overalls is simply the best I have ever seen on any pair of jeans. It is sublime. It’s such a tour-de-force that I can’t help but feel that TCB Jeans is simply bragging about what they are capable of. So I want to spend a little time going into the details.The 1880 Waist-Overalls are based on the earliest pairs from 1879 onwards. At this time, these overalls were not flat-felled seam or chain-stitched. Instead they were stitched together with a lapped seam with the edges left completely raw and unfinished.
Selvedge and raw-lapped seams are an experience
Now, to us modern-day denim aficionados we would certainly be familiar with flat-felled seams because they hide the unfinished part of a fabric inside the fold where it is not visible.
It looks nice and clean. One would normally think that this means that the fabric is protected so it will not unravel. Given that the 1880-waist overalls have unfinished seams how could this be prevented? This is where the sewing of TCB shines. Rather than simply stitching two pieces of fabric together with a single thread, the waist overalls contain not one, not two, not three, but four separate threads. And the entire length of all these seams is sew with cotton thread. So as one thread breaks there are three more to replace it. So the seams were not simply stitched once with a double chain-stitch as is common but the machine was taken over the seam multiple times.
You can see two stitches on the right and then a third to their left; but even further left there is yet another thread holding the seam secured tightly (This photo was hard to take, sorry for the quality)
Recall, the whole point of the appeal of the overalls in the past was that their ruggedness and durability bucked the trend of what one ought to dress like. Despite looking “unfinished” because of the exposed seams the waist-overalls contain far more workmanship than more finished pairs of denim. The superbly stitched lapped seams are even more interesting because they are contrasted with the opposite on all ends: selvedge.
The rest of the jeans contain more selvedge edges than any other pair of jeans. The outseam, of course, is selvedge like all selvedge jeans. The watch-pocket too. The button fly, however, is also selvedge, and the entire waist band the all the way around is also selvedge. Simply opening the jeans one is hit by vast swathes of selvedge edges contrasted with quad stitched lapped seams with threads flying out. The loose threads even wrap around each other securing themselves further and can be seen sticking out the hem. It’s one hell of a party trick.
That selvedge button fly? Stitched again with single-needle stitching. You can see that the bottom of the stitching comes closer and closer which, usually, cannot happen because it is double stitched.

The simplicity of the selvedge is gorgeous. So clean. And the contrast between the clean selvedge and the raw edges is an experience.
The raw edges have spun around each other further securing themselves to the left while the clean selvedge peaks out on the right.
More selvedge
Cinches? Cinches and Buttons
The cinch is the most critically important part of these jeans for me. In the late 19th century, belts were not yet fashionable so overalls contained suspenders buttons as well as cinches.
This might seem like just a detail but when we come back to thinking about the utility of these overalls it will be quite important. The cinch is perfectly located below the middle of the waist band. Meaning that if you tighten the cinch it doesn’t tighten directly on your stomach. It tightens below and behind it which keeps the pants up while the waistband is still pliable enough to stretch and grow on the front with you as you eat, drink, and workout throughout the day. The cinch is held together by a custom made iron-piece with prongs sharp enough to hold the belt. Wearing these for over six months the cinch hasn’t slid even once!
Iron cinch
The jeans also contain a host of steel buttons that are already starting to rust quite nicely. The button-fly features five buttons while the suspender buttons are the same as the top-most button and six in number.

Rusting button
Rivets
The rivets, of course, where what made the original Levi’s legendary. Two for the watch-pocket and two for each of the front pockets, two for the single pocket in the back, and as was tradition, one for the crotch, and lastly two for the cinch. They are copper and feel light yet strong.
Closer up of the rivets
Rivets again
Leather Patch
The leather patch on the back is mixed tanned being both vegetable and chrome tanned and is made out of deerskin. The deerskin has a soft texture that fits the pliability of the jeans as a whole and the mixed tannage gives it a natural look while still giving water resistance to age without becoming stiff.
Putting it Together
It’s important to note that when these jeans were constructed in the 1880’s they were not sew as they are now with the front and back being sewn separately then stitched together. Instead, overalls were made by sewing the left and right sides first and then stitching them together through the middle. Additionally, fabrics were pressed with a iron when sewing the seams together rather than using a seam-guide. The fact that TCB recreated even these details really shows that no corner was cut.
In my opinion, the fabric, which I’ll get to in a second, is absolutely perfect for the construction. The benefit of lapped seams over flat-felled seams is that it reduces how bulky the seam is—it makes the seams feel like they are non existent. Combined with a lighter fabric it really feels as if the entire jeans are just a single piece of fabric rather than something held together at the seams.
Natural indigo, American cotton, 8oz
There was no synthetic indigo in the late 1800’s so any indigo dying had to be done by using leaves from the indigo plants. The leaves for TCB Jean’s waist-overalls are grown in India. While the original pairs would have been vat-dyed TCB elected to rope-dye the jeans so that they fade. The threads are dipped in the Indian indigo pool 8 times each without any synthetics used.
Who said 8 oz fabric can’t have incredible feel and texture? Just LOOK at it!
The threads are themselves made using American cotton. I believe that are two kinds of American cotton used to give it a fluffier feel. The end result is a very hairy fabric with a heterogenous color, the natural indigo being darker in some areas than others.
Let’s talk about the weight. This is by far the lightest pair of jeans I have and I was worried initially that the starchy, stiff, rough and heavier feel of 13-18 oz denim would be missed. Having worn these over six months, I have not even once wished that they were heavier. The fabric is so fluffy and hairy and supple that those same 8 oz take up more space in your hand. Additionally, this isn’t a high density high tension lightweight fabric that feels like a shirt, the lower tension of shuttle looms seems to have led to something that feels airy and pliable yet substantial at the same-time.
The color of the fabric is also, to my eyes, beautiful. The natural indigo has a little iridescence to it (not unlike the roadrunner cotton) and a slightly bluer look than the deep purples of synthetic indigo. Both look beautiful but I think the softness of the natural indigo really fits the softer, fluffier, hairier look of the denim. It’s got an oceanic tone to it that is really pleasing.

Worn with a loopwheeled fox cotton t-shirt.
Worn with Tricker’s deerskin chukkas
The construction and fabric, from the cinch to the natural indigo, the American cotton to the rivets, the selvedge to the steel buttons, leads to a pair of jeans that has completely changed the game for me when it comes to utility. If I had to spend the rest of your life in a pair of pants and was never allowed to change this is the undisputed ace. If I have to be stranded on an island this no question hands down the pair I would take. Their loose fit means means that you can run around and jump without feeling restricted, the lack of traditional seams means you can lounge on a couch and be no less comfortable than with pajamas. They are long enough and dense enough to protect from fast wind yet light enough not to hold your body-heat in. Their loose fit again means that they leave enough room for a thermal or long-johns underneath while letting in the air in hot weather. Gained a little waist or ate a big lunch? Loosen the cinch. They are the definition of utility.
Fit Pic 1, worn with my beloved Fox Cotton Type I Jacket
Fit Pic 2, worn with my beloved Fox Cotton Type I Jacket
Reflecting on the 1880’s
I originally looked to TCB’s 1880 jeans as well as newspaper and patents to try and better understand why waist-overalls and their jean descendants have so taken the world by storm cutting across gender, ethnicity, culture, and class.
It’s clear that the late 1800’s were filled with attempts to make the perfect pair of pantaloons. From measuring rulers to jean-stretching devices to ways of sewing button-flys to creating strengthened seams everyone tried to make pants better. Standards for how a pair of pants should be sewn were still evolving and everyone experimented with new techniques. The end result was an age of innovation in construction and stylistic techniques. Yet, there were still no seam guides nor any chain-stitching so the tools available were narrower. The 1880 overalls look and feel like the end product of that innovation were everything had its purpose. The lightweight seams actually make the rivets feel like they are points of strength while with the thicker seams of modern jeans the rivets feel like they exist more for aesthetics. And without bar-tacking the rivets, again, feel again like they have a critical job to do. There is something about their simplicity that is so compelling. No overlock, just single needle stitching, rivets, steel buttons, iron cinch, fabric, and a leather patch. The fabric itself is so incredibly raw, just pure natural indigo over the hairiest fluffiest lightweight American cotton with low tension selvedge.
That makes them liberating in so many ways. They aren’t about projecting an image, they are not only as Versace would say, something we don’t feel obliged to wear but something even rawer and simpler than any other pair of pants. What’s funny of course is that the time put into recreating these simple humble jeans requires more work than any designer label would put into it. From the natural indigo to the quad stitched seams to the single-needle lock-stitch to the ironing and constructing the jeans left to right, they are a remarkable piece of art.
I’ve struggled to come to terms with what the 1880’s mean even after wearing them for six months. They continually amaze me and have probably caused me more angst about what I think denim is about than any other pair. They’re a bit *too* good. Have we really not improved on jeans in 140 years? Is it possible that we just perfected what a pair of utilitarian pants ought to be like and since then have diversified more than improved?
The fact that people like Mr.. Cohen, the overall-women, and the rich-man’s son were so frustrated with not being able to wear overalls that they would transgress their social boundaries is a bit less surprising now. The 1880’s were a product of a lot of hard work, of trying to make people’s lives easier. Once someone donned the overalls it seems going back to anything else didn’t have the same allure. The 1880 overalls somehow free the body and the soul.
Interestingly, I don’t think my appreciation for other jeans has diminished with my experience with the 1880. Looks and silhouette and fades and thicker fabric and the wonderful strength of chain-stitching seams are incredible. But I think its easier to see why those are so interesting when you have contrast. Once we made the perfect pair of utilitarian pants we could compromise here and there to make them look nicer and feel more substantial while still maintaining their casual appeal. The 1880 was a gateway to the wonderful world of modern denim. So it’s really unfortunate that with the advent of the 501’s that the 1880’s got lost in history because modern jeans only make sense when we understand what gave them their impetus.
One last note to conclude:
I think one might wonder what is the exact point of recreating older denim. Is bringing back the 1880 overalls a bit like trying to bring the first Macintosh computer in the modern age of smart phones? Something unwieldy and out of place? In reality, I now feel that it is more like creating Jurassic Park. Trying to recapture the sewing techniques, the style, and substance of the past is tremendously difficult and an art of its own. So the 1880’s are more like a dinosaur. Not in the sense that they are old and dusty but because they are like a T-Rex: absolute wonders of what happens when you take something to its extreme. What can we do when we forget everything except trying to design the most liberating pair of jeans? TCB Jeans by bringing that back are bringing a monster into a new world. And that monster doesn’t for a second pale in comparison to its living descendants or relatives. It has a different architecture but its so committed to a particular way of doing things that there is barely anything that can compete with it on *that* singular focus. The king isn’t dead, long live the king.
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Maybe you should try asking the other masters below in the comments!
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submitted by AutoModerator to TokyoAfterschool [link] [comments]


2020.09.20 18:25 DoublonOhio I finished Disc 1 of FF7. Should I keep going ?

This post is both a review of my impressions so far about the game and a call for recommendations.
I have to preface this by saying why I started this game that came out when I was in my mother's womb. I had never played any major Final Fantasy games since the most recent titles were not very appealing to me. The only FF games I have played were Dissidia and and the start of Crisis Core on PSP. But many people whose opinions I value a lot keep putting one FF or another in their favourite games of all time. The one I was most interested in was FF6, but since FF7 came out on Xbox Pass I figured that I should start with this milestone of the Japanese RPGs. As a warning I will say that I'm better at describing shortcomings than qualities, so my enjoyment of the game is probably higher than what I will let out here.

First, I will talk about the combat and equipment system. I'm usually not a fan of static turn based combat and that's the main reason why I don't play many Japanese or Japanese inspired RPGs, but I also really want to experience the story of some of these games and playing FF7 is a way for me to find enjoyment out of the combat system. The real time aspect is really good as it turns a stale combat system that could easily be solved into a quick decision making that challenges your adaptability. The early game was kinda sluggish since all you can do is using basic attacks and healing, but the materia system expands fast enough to let you experiment many combinations. In that regards, it reminds me of Darkest Dungeon, also a turn based game that managed to solve this issue with the importance of positioning. What FF7 does differently and that I don't really like is the lack of information about enemies. Unless you decide to use the boring Sense mechanic, you don't know anything about the enemies, and even if you do all you learn is their name, their HP and their elemental weaknesses if they have some. You still have to figure out their resistances, absorptions and status immunities. This makes the combat drag for no reason, since using elemental and status magic can be useless or even heal the enemies. Dealing regular physical attacks seems to be the only reliable option, unless you really want to try everything against meaningless enemies. Figuring out strategies against bosses is more acceptable, but they sometimes appear so far from any save point that playing with them can result in painful resets. Mind you, the game isn't very hard since you get showered in Phoenix Downs so you can most of the time brute force an encounter that went wrong. By the way, outside of robots being weak to lightning, dragons absorbing fire and water creatures absorbing water, guessing resistances and weaknesses based on appearance like in Pokemon is a trap. Sometimes a bird will absorb lighting, sometimes it won't. Very few water creatures are weak to lightning and jellyfishes are weak to fire. I wasn't having fun this way, so I tried using guides to get an understanding of the enemies before I went anywhere. This made the materia planning aspect of the game GREAT, but it also turned the game into more of a cakewalk than it already was. As a side note, I wonder how anyone managed to use the Enemy skill Materia back in 1997. Collecting skills using Manipulate seems extremely long and boring without a guide. But with a guide this Materia is just broken. Now that I'm getting tired of being assaulted by every creatures in the game, spamming Beta or Aqualung is a treat.

In regards to the story now, I have to mention that I already knew most of the plot and the characters' fates, and who doesn't at this point. So the emotion and surprise that was supposed to make some events shocking is long gone. With that said I still think the plot is fine, Sephiroth's personality making the wild-goose chase bearable. I might make some enemies here but my issue comes with character development and dialogues. Outside of the Sephiroth-Cloud-Tifa trio, I find most characters to be under-exploited, and I need to know if it will change in Disc 2. Barrett is your stereotypical big muscle, small brain and heart of gold guy who is so ridiculous that I just can't believe that they ever managed to destroy a reactor by themselves. Shinra should be ashamed of themselves. RedXIII is intriguing at first and has the best companion quest so far, but since he joined the party so early I was hoping to see him more involved in the story. Yufie is a one dimensional character and I never want her in my party because her legs are the stuff of nightmares. Cid is an asshole that will probably get his redemption arc, but for now he doesn't care at all about what's happening. The game couldn't make me care about Cait Sith even at the end of the temple and Vincent just came in. I'm interested in him but his limits can lose you fights if you don't know about the enemies beforehand. Another reason why I don't like this combat system. There is almost no interactivity inside the group outside of scripted meetings in the main story and generic one liners during gameplay ("Are you okay, Could ?", "This guy is insane !"). I might be biased because of the many parties I experienced in more recent games but still. Finally, Aerith didn't click with me. She's supposed to be an Ancient but all you see is a lunatic talking to spirits and the Earth. I know she truly does that, but the game has never involved me in it so far and this spiritual aspect of the game is for now too distant from what you actually do in the game. Despite paying more attention to Tifa I was still forced into a date with Aerith and I just don't see the appeal in a girl interested in Cloud just because he looks and acts like Zack.>! So when she died I didn't feel any sadness, just "Now choosing who to put in my party will be easier". Sorry for the many people who are still heartbroken by this event.!<

The OST is fine, with some great pieces I could listen forever and others I don't want to hear anymore after 30 seconds.

Last but not least, the graphics. I usually don't care about bad graphics and it is almost never something that goes into my consideration when I buy a game. But early 3D games can be very rough and the cinematography can't save everything. Watching Reno run past your group and set up the bombs without any resistance, or Sephiroth's stiff body falling in slow motion to kill Aertith is very goofy in the eyes of someone who started 3D video games on the first Xbox. My other problem lies with some of the enemies visual design. Hearing an ominous music while fighting against Warning Boards, matryoshkas or houses can be too much for my suspension of disbelief, but it is admittedly a minor issue.

With all that said, I need your opinion of what I should do. I started the game expecting to finish it, because it is as much research as it is entertainment for me. I have given up on games before, but it was either because I hated them or because outside events forced me to pause them for too long. It is the first time I find myself wondering if I should keep playing a game that I for the most part enjoy but find many issues in. Since I know how the plot develops for the most part, I want to ask you how the combat grows and if your party characters gain some importance and interactivity in the rest of the game. If the game doesn't get more complex in the second half of the game, I would be ready to give up and try another old school FF game if you think one of them could be closer to what I like.
Thank You !

Edit : English is hard
submitted by DoublonOhio to patientgamers [link] [comments]


2020.09.20 05:59 trebud69 [US] HIGH&LOW (2016). A prefecture held by 5 gangs in Japan called S.W.O.R.D. have to come together and set aside their differences to push back the Kuryu Group and stop their plan to take their land. An epic, 7 movie action series that has as much character, heart, and style as it does action.

It's available worldwide for the first time starting today.
I literally just got into this series a few weeks ago, before the announcement of it coming to Netflix so here's a quick guide by a recent devotee to this franchise. Perfect timing for you guys too because it took a lot to find everything with English subs as I was watching it.
Though there are 4 "seasons" that are not coming to netflix and you would have to find online, here's a little guide if you're interested in what the franchise is about if you're out of the loop. Note: only the 7 movies will be on Netflix worldwide.
HIGH&LOW is a Japanese action series developed by Exile Tribe, a group of J-Pop bands under one label, who star in this stylistic but wholesome world. Think City of Violence if it was all about the gangs they fought mixed with wholesomeness and humor with a sprinkle of John Wick stylistic cinematography and set design.
There were two seasons that came out in 2015 that was the prologue for the official movie. You can find these two seasons on KissAsian.sh. I personally recommend watching the two seasons before the movies, as it adds character moments that the movies tend to lack for the sake of getting the story and action in. You also get to know the 5 gangs better and how each character forms a bond with each other it also has some great action sequences as well.
Then there is the "first" movie Road to HIGH&LOW which is pretty much a retelling of the two seasons with an added 10 minutes or so just for the movie.
Then it goes HIGH&LOW The Movie.
Then a spin off film Red Rain is after HIGH&LOW THE MOVIE (be careful don't do what I did and immediately start HIGH&LOW 2 after the first movie as it spoiled Red Rain). This movie follows the Amimya Brothers who are pretty much the catalyst who split the Mugen gang into the 5 gangs in the SWORD story, which is what the two seasons are about, they're sprinkled throughout the series but this is the first time you really spend time with them.
After the spin-off technically the DTC movie is next as it follows 3 of the comedic members of the main gang Sannoh, not an action movie, more of a comedy movie. I say technically because it actually came out after the official 3 movies but chronologically it's before some of them. Before the DTC movie there are 11, 3-5 minute episodes to watch beforehand but unfortunately the only way to watch them with English subs is you have to join MugenClub on LiveJournal, it's run by the one guy who has subbed every HIGH&LOW thing to come out these past 5 years. He moderates it himself and only allows people familiar with the characters already to join, it took a little over a week to get accepted into the community. (You could totally watch this after the 3 movies but I only brought it up because chronologically it happens after the first movie, I believe)
After DTC Movie, it's HIGH&LOW Movie 2 followed by the 3rd movie Final Mission, which is presumably the end of the SWORD story arc. If you finish the Final Mission and want more just look up those first two seasons, if you haven't already.
After Final Mission there is also another "season" called The Worst Episode.0 which has 6, 25 minute episodes that is a prologue to the last movie called HIGH&LOW THE WORST. The episodes help immensely because the movie starts right where the last episode ends. You would also have to watch The Worst Episodes .0 thru Live Journal, MugenClub. As of this past Thursday night, they just announced that even more Worst episodes will come as well that take place after HIGH&LOW THE WORST, so there is more content coming.
If you wanna dive even more, there is another action verse that is in the same universe as HIGH&LOW and The Worst. Takashi Miike filmed the first two prequel adaptions of the manga titled Crows, which in itself a prequel to the Worst manga, which is the group in The Worst movie. The movies are the Crows Zero (2007) then Crows Zero 2 (2009) followed by Crows Zero Exploded (2014) then the story continues through the mangas. The school in those films and mangas is mentioned a bit thruought The Worst movie but they aren't exactly connected persue as some actors in Crows Exploded are actually featured in the High&Low series as different characters but they are still in the same universe, you don't have to worry about that but just thought if you wanted to expand into the universe more, you can.
Well, there ya go. As someone who just found out this series a few weeks ago, I already binged all of it and find it one of the most wholesome action series to date and is definitely a great action series especially after something like Cobra Kai. The characters are likeable and can be quite funny and also have the variety of personalities a typical anime would have, the slogan for this show was "Everybody is the main character" but it also is about commraterie and friendship even if you're in opposite gangs. It's really worth your time and should watch it, even though it feels like Kingdom Hearts levels of confusion when it comes to the names and spinoffs lol
submitted by trebud69 to NetflixBestOf [link] [comments]


2020.09.18 23:06 Hero3239 UEA Scientist report on the primitive Neckus Beardians. A sci-fi Neckbeard fanfiction.

Greetings everyone in the Moon cult Herd! I am hear with another Neckbeard fanfiction but this time it is a little bit different than my previous three stories. It's styled as if it were a science report on a neckbeard as if they were a different species. I tried to fit it as accurately as I could while putting on a little dramatic flare here and there. The idea for the story came to me when I was playing Stellaris (which is a really great game). I hope you all enjoy this different approach to the Neckbeard fanfictions. Enjoy!
The following is from a United Earth Alliance science team that was exploring the outer fringes of our galaxy to see what new planets could be colonized for the United Earth Alliance and what resources could be salvaged to aid in scientific breakthroughs. During their exploration the science team came across primitive life forms who had not yet reached the technological advancements that the United Earth Alliance had and thus had no way of space travel. The science team puts them at the technological age of the earth during the 21st century back before the UEA was founded. Chronicled below are some of the reports that were available to the scientific community. May the stars guide humanity to a bright future.
United Earth Alliance scientist report #3878:
We encountered an alien species during our explorations in the outer parts of the Mas system. They are a bipedal humanoid creature that share a remarkable resemblance to us homo sapiens. We have dubbed these lifeforms as Neckus Beardia and they come from the homeworld dubed Pentas Basemence. Our first contact with these creatures seems to have startled them and so we will be setting up an observational sight to study these fascinating creatures.
UEA Scientist report #3882:
We have learned a lot about these Neckus Beardians from lots of observations. From most of the studies we have preformed we have found patterns of behaviour in the Neckus Beardia. They seem to rely on cans of body spray as a form of cleaning and scavenge food that is similar to what we know as chicken tenders found in certain locations that appear to be microwaves. The Neckus Beardians have dubbed these as Tendies. To obtain these delicacies, they use a currency called Good Boy Points or GBP. The Neckus Beardians also seem to have a social hierarchy where they listen to a group of elder beards who assign them tasks. It also seems that they have a religion with the head of it being a Neckus Beardia by the name of Elliot Rogers a saint by some depictions. It is said that those who follow the words of the saint will be blessed with a ‘Stacy’ in the afterlife. More research will need to be done on what a ‘Stacy’ is. Their primary source of entertainment seems to be like what is know on Earth as Anime and Videogames. They seem to get competitive with these sources of entertainment and often engage in proxy battles about who the best ‘waifu’ is or who can obtain a ‘killstreak’ the fastest. More observations will be done.
UEA Scientist report #3883:
Our research drones followed up on the religious aspect of the Neckus Beardians and found that not all followed the teachings of Rogerians. We had discovered that another religion opposite to the Rogerian existed. The religion in question is called the White Knights. The value system they uphold is a very romanticized version of chivalry from the medivial period. Some of the higher ranking White Knights have been seen in knight like armor as if to personify them as actual knights. Those who practiced the teachings of the White Knights have been seen arguing with the Rogerians about the difference in beliefs. These White Knights were also observed going onto internet forums and ‘defending’ those they believe are female. Their tactics include: attacking the one who is criticizing their ‘M’lady’, privately dming the female in question and praising her, and trying to get the supposed female’s attention when they were defending her. There is one religion however that unites all of the Neckus Beardians and that is church of mummy. This church tells of a goddess like figure who takes care of all of the Neckus Beardians in Pentas Basemence by providing them with the microwaves that heat up the Tendies they so desperately crave and the faithful are provided with a lot of Good Boy Points. The set up of the church is similar to the ancient Christian religion.
UEA Scientist report #3885:
We were fortunate enough to obtain a deceased specimen for dissection to study the anatomy of the Neckus Beardia. Upon bringing it up to the science craft, we needed to put on gas masks to deal with the smell. We believe that it might be due to the nature of the creature as to why it smells so bad, but it is unknown at this time. Our dissection team was surprised to find that the anatomy was similar to that of a homo sapien. However, it was noted that the organs were a bit larger compared to normal homo sapiens. It would also explain the creatures body mass. A popular theory among the community was that this increased size in body mass was to deal with cooler temperatures on the planet’s surface but was later disregarded when the temperature was similar to that of Earth. The Neckus Beardians seem to have a distinct patch of facial hair around the neck area a distinct sign of the species. Observations have shown that this is not always the case and some appear to look like humans which has lead to one conclusion from one of the moonhorseian cultists located on the moon colony. It is said that it has nothing to do with the fedora on the outside (A common hat choice usually paired with a trenchcoat for Neckus Beardian attire), but the fed-aura on the inside.
UEA Scientist report #3889:
An interesting interaction came up when one of our female scientists was spotted by one of the Neckus Beardians in the observation chamber. They seemed to gather around her and attempted to flirt with her using a tactic called negative complimenting or negging for short. They would attempt to flatter the scientist by giving her a backhanded compliment. Others would try to give her something they had on them like the Tendies or GBP as seen earlier. They would often try to prove their superiority to other Neckus Beardians by stating facts about how they could care for the scientist or facts about their entertainment source. When she rejected their advances, some ignored the rejection and pushed on while others ceased ‘pleasant’ behavior and started to insinuate things about the scientist’s sexual life and call her derogatory terms. This behavior seemed to flip like a switch. Most peculiar. When a male scientist would enter in close proximity, he would be met with hostility. The Neckus Beardians would try to prove dominance over the scientist when in close proximity. They labeled him as a ‘beta male’ while calling themselves ‘Alphas’. Some would try to get the female scientist’s attention by bringing up the male scientist and how she could do so much better with them. An assumption that both scientists are dating.
UEA Scientist report #3900 final report:
After many observations it is deemed that the Neckus Beardians are not a threat to Humanity and that the world might be prime for habitation. Their body structure seems to be from a mostly sedative livestyle and as such the creatures could not run very fast during our tests. They would get winded after three minutes of running. The Neckus Beardians are not to the technological point of space travel and their form of weaponry is in the same style as the Japanese katana from back in the Sengoku Jidai period. The advancements of UEA weaponry surpasses the Neckus Beardians by a marginal amount. It is possible to adopt the Neckus Beardians into UEA society but the results would be unknown.
submitted by Hero3239 to MoonhorseStories [link] [comments]


2020.09.18 15:21 TimothyNurley Not entirely sure that this belongs on nosleep - that was my intention when I began writing, but it quickly turned into something else. What do you think? (Working Title: Voyage to Black Dream's Lake).

Good evening, everyone. I’m not quite certain how to begin here, so I’ll just be upfront. My friend passed away recently, and he didn’t have any family. Hell, he didn’t have anyone. It was just me, and a couple of acquaintances. He committed suicide. I was going through the things that he left to me - mostly old photos of us in school, one or two collectables, some of those bugs encased in glass. That’s just what he was into, I guess. Anyway, as I was looking through that small box of his belongings, I came across a diary. Or a journal, or whatever you want to call it. I opened it up, and a piece of paper fell out of the first page.
“Hello there.
This is a private account of my life over the past year.
See you soon.”
I think it’s some kind of joke. One that I don’t find funny, but that was Jack’s sense of humour. We’re total opposites - I’m the kind of guy that laughs at absurdist comedy, he was the kind of guy who would chuckle to himself if he saw an old lady fall down, even if he did feel a little bad for doing so. His “see you soon” was probably his way of getting in one last laugh.
Without wasting any more of your time, I’m going to tell you about the things that are written in Jack’s journal. For the sake of clarity, everything Jack writes is in italics. I’m writing these up as I’m reading them.

“20/2/2019
It’s back again. This thing is driving me crazy. Holy shit. Every time I drive anywhere, they’re all just standing by the side of the road. They’re just in the corner of my vision, I can’t even look at them, but I know they’re there. It’s getting to the point that I’ve got to laugh about it. Silhouettes encroaching on my peripheral vision. I haven’t had this since I was like 17, back in sixth form. It has been pretty much a background hum since then, but now it’s out in the open. Used to be that writing shit down made it easier to process that it’s just all in my head. I dunno if that will work now, but hello, diary. I’ll get a lot of use out of this book if this shit carries on.
Black Dream’s Lake.
Binding shadows with vision,
Winding aside the path I take,
Cold Winter mist fogs breath’s dew drops,
I rest, my mind’s boat on black dream’s lake.”
[Prior to typing out this one, I had a little flick through some of the pages, and Jack seems to end a lot of these entries with a short snippet of poetry. That’s why I’m writing these here. Not once in the entire time I knew him did he ever say he wrote poetry. Perhaps it was only a coping mechanism, or something to take his mind off of things. I don’t know. I’d like to think it was how he helped himself get through things. Jack was a pretty talented artist, though. He did some really nice paintings back in school. I don’t think he ever carried on with them after we left. Maybe he turned to poetry after that. Despite the hardships in his life, Jack was very creative. I think that warrants sharing - he probably would’ve wanted people to read them.]

“25/2/2019
5 days of the same, just people by the side of the road, looking in. It’s still a pain in the ass, because it makes me second guess every turn I take. But I can live with it. It’s just annoying. I’m not really freaked out by it anymore.
Relic of age.
Old friends find their way,
They fumble in my footsteps,
I guide them all home.”
[Jack ends with a haiku here, though I don’t recall him having any fondness for Japanese mediums. I think this poem means that Jack felt isolated, despite having people around him. Maybe he felt like he was dismissing people who wanted to help him.]

“25/2/2019
Oh my fucking god. I wake up in the middle of the night and this shit is straight up sat on my chest. I shit myself, because I don’t know what it is. Then I realise I can’t move. It’s sleep paralysis. I look at the thing, and it turns around and stares at me. It’s a cat. You know those creepy reflective eyes they have at night? That’s mad. It’s gone when I actually wake up, because it wasn’t real, but still creepy. Technically it’s the 21st but I’ve already written the date in. It’s like 4AM and I have work tomorrow.”
[No poem here, I guess he was tired.]

“26/2/2019
I was late for work yesterday, because I woke up late. I was legit only 5 minutes late, but my manager was shouting at me like the asshole he is. Like I’ll stay late, I’ll make up for it, you don’t need to be a dick. It’s not like we’re understaffed. There’s no need for it. When he was shouting at me, I felt like I was gonna pass out. I just couldn’t handle it. Being shouted at, I mean. Normally I’d be fine, but I’ve not been in a great place over the past week.
I hate my boss.
Sweet Jerry Hunt,
A fat little runt,
Power tripping, semen sipping,
Get fucked, you cunt.”
[As obscene as it is, this one did make me laugh. It’s nice to see him vent his frustrations in a creative way, rather than take it out on others like so many people do. There is also a scribble at the end of the page on this one. I think it’s covering up some extra lines to the poem that he didn’t like. I tried to read what was underneath, but it wasn’t legible.]

“1/3/2019
Today was awful. I spoke to one of the silhouettes. It took me a good five minutes to realise afterwards that it wasn’t a real person. I was just walking down the street when it shouted out to me. Asked me if I had the time. I was walking to my car just after my shift, so it was dark out. I shouted back “just finished my shift so it’s gotta be about six” and he said thank you. Realised he was one of them when I was driving. Like, “oh shit, that wasn’t real.” Really going back to how I was when I was a teenager. Writing is helping though, I think. My manager actually apologised to me, said he was having a rough day. That was kind of refreshing. I do feel a little bad now, though. Only a little bit.
Black Dream’s Lake 2.
Branches grow their little leaves,
Pulled further down until they break,
Poison words pepper packet tops,
A single cigarette on black dream’s lake.”
[Come to think of it, I think it was around about this time that Jack started smoking again. He picks the habit back up when he gets stressed. He was probably annoyed at himself for lighting up again. That’s the vibe I get from this poem. I’m not sure why he keeps mentioning this “black dream’s lake,” but it’s a strange little motif, I’d like to see if he’s going anywhere with it.]

“5/3/2019
My colleague set me up with some girl his girlfriend is mates with. Daisy, her name is. That’s going to be awful. I have to keep up appearances, so I’ll go along. Poor girl. I felt like an asshole at the time, too. I was definitely looking over Richard’s shoulder when he was telling me about her. There was this fat black spot in my vision right behind him. I dunno. Maybe he didn’t notice.
Daisy and Dockett.
Dearest darling Daisy,
Don’t dare dose,
Demon Dog Dockett,
Devours dreaming damsels.
Dearest darling Dead,
Did dare dose,
Demon Dog Dockett,
Did damsel devour.”
[I don’t know if there is a message with this one, but I like it. It was scribbled over, but in pencil. So far, all of this document is written in pen, so I erased the pencil and copied out the words underneath. It’s quite a good poem, I don’t know why he scribbled it out. I’m not sure where the name Dockett came from, the closest thing I can think of is a docket, but that doesn’t seem to make much sense. Maybe it meant something significant to Jack.]

“8/3/2019
It actually wasn’t awful. I mean, the day was off to a bad start. I had the cat sleep paralysis thing again. Yuck. But Daisy is actually pretty cool. She has a similar sense of humour to me, which is amazing. Wow. I had a great time, she did too. We’re going out again next Friday.”
[No poem with this one.]

“15/3/2019
It went well, again. I think we’ve really hit it off. She has a pet millipede, so she won’t mind my bug collection. That’s usually kind of off putting to most girls. I only had one little blip on the date, too. Almost asked a waiter who wasn’t there for the check. Oops.
Holding hope.
I stand, still hopeful,
Even while courage fails me,
I lean to, and hold.”
[Another haiku. I don’t think this one is actually that good. Sorry, Jack. Perhaps I’m just not a fan of them. It’s nice to see, though. I think he’s writing about leaning in to kiss her goodbye after a date. He never actually mentioned Daisy to me, but he must’ve got on well with her. This one was scribbled over in pencil, too.]

“20/3/2019
I think I might be getting a little nervous about how things are going with Daisy. Which is stupid of me, because we’ve only been on two dates. I just don’t want to fuck it up. I dunno. Maybe I’m overthinking it. Doesn’t help that they’re whispering about me again, though. I ignore them. Because I know they aren’t real. But still.
Black Dream’s Lake 3.
Whispered words and sliding eyes,
Whining willow’s woodgrain ache,
Fettered in mind the March hare hops,
Fingertips brush on black dream’s lake.”
[I find myself wanting more from Jack’s Black Dream’s Lake. I assume these are all intended to be read as one poem, that Jack writes when he feels like it. They seem to leave me wanting more, like I can tell it isn’t finished yet.]

“23/3/2019
I really don’t know what I was worried about. Last night was great. No mishaps. No problems. We’re going to spend the rest of the weekend together. Catch you later. Not like you’re a friend, you are pieces of paper. Well, whatever. Not like this is supposed to be a diary, but if that’s what it turns into then so be it.
wit?
whatisit?
sillywit.
sillywho?
you.
[I don’t get this one. Maybe he was making himself laugh. This was scribbled out with pencil, too.]

“29/3/2019
Hello again. Things have been going good. I’ve been able to sort of block out a lot of the constant drone that seems ever present in the background of my life. The only thing that I can’t seem to stop is the sleep paralysis cat. I’ve kind of grown fond of it, but not really. It still freaks me the fuck out.
Bounce
Bobbing bouncing breasts,
Brazenly breaking braziers,
Bravely bursting breasts,
this is shit”
[A poem about breasts that was abandoned halfway through by the looks of it. Not scribbled out. Jack seemed happy to leave it like this. It also seems that he began writing in pencil at this point. He also drew a smiley face at the end of his poem.]

“7/4/2019
I’ve not been writing much, but that’s because I haven’t had to. I kind of feel obligated to write in you, because you’ve been helpful. It’s kind of nice, having a friend who just listens. Things are going really well with Daisy, and we even went on a double date with Richard and Lucy. Daisy and Lucy are real good friends, and Richard is a pretty nice guy, so I can see us all hanging out more often. I’ve been in a really good place recently. I thanked him for setting me up with Daisy, he joked and said it was good to finally see me not looking miserable. He’s right, I do feel a lot better, everyone can probably see it.
Black Dream’s Lake 4
[???] amidst [???] fields,
Feel good things [???] sake,
[???],
[???] black dream’s lake.
Thanks, Richard.”
[I tried my hardest to see what the missing lines of this poem were - unfortunately, the entire poem was erased. I was just about able to make out some of the first two lines from the impressions that Jack’s pencil left in the paper. It’s a shame. I really do want to know what happens on Black Dream’s Lake. I don’t know Richard, but Jack seemed to like him.]

“23/4/2019
So the sleep paralysis cat came back again last night. He was sat on my chest, staring right at me. Like usual. Then he hisses in my face. Like proper angry. Never happened before. Not a fan, to be honest. Then he stands up and says “she doesn’t need you as much as you need her” and jumps off me and scurries away out the door. Really shit.”
[No poem here, sadly.]

“24/4/2019
Same as last night. Cat was bigger and louder, though. Interrupted a nice dream, too.
A butterfly.
In fields I dreamt,
Of pastures grey,
And sunflowers bent,
Up and away,
Curved over mountaintops,
With petals of doorstops,
In whimsical delight,
I laughed at the sight,
Of a butterfly’s flight,
With wings made of light.
That’s what I dreamt about. It was kind of nice, really Alice in Wonderland feel to it.
[If the footnote at the end of the poem didn’t give it away, Jack wrote a poem about his dream. As much as these one off poems are nice, I really am dying to get back to the ideas behind Black Dream’s Lake. If I’m being honest, I’d really like to have seen Jack do a painting of Black Dream’s Lake. It would really seal the deal for me, really add to the art. But he stopped, so I guess he just didn’t enjoy it anymore. These poems supposedly became the way he expressed himself instead. The word "sunflowers” was erased here, but again, I was able to make it out from the impression his pencil left.]

“28/4/2019
Finally kicked smoking. Again. For the fourth time. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still stressed, and I’m still getting shit in the corner of my vision. But there are far less intrusive hallucinations. Nothing auditory, aside from the cat, but that’s different because it’s sleep paralysis. Man. Writing is helping. Daisy is helping. Richard and Lucy are so chill, too. It’s helping having a few people who care around me.
Daisy Dares
Daisy dares defeat,
Demon dog Dockett,
Damsel demands dreams,
Darling deservedly doses.
Daisy dared destroy,
Demon dog Dead,
Damsel demanded dreams,
Darling deserved diamonds.”
[A continuation of Daisy and Dockett, I really enjoy the callback here. It’s nice to see repeating themes and motifs throughout Jack’s work. I’m still interested to see if Dockett means anything, or if it’s a name that Jack made up. Unlike Black Dream’s Lake 4, I was able to get the entirety of the poem from the impressions left in the paper.]

“5/5/2019
I showed Daisy the painting I did of my dream. She really liked it. I left the petals as actual petals though, rather than making them doorstops. That looked weird in the dream, and I wanted the painting to look nice. It’s kind of funny how her favourite flowers aren’t daisies, though. I should paint her as a giant daisy, that might be funny. I think she’d get a good laugh out of that.
[???] Daisies
[???] risen,
Wade through waters shallow,
Peculiar petals [???],
[???].”
[I would love to see where this poem went. It’s a shame he decided that he wasn’t happy with it. He was quite unhappy with a lot of his art, too, even though his paintings got a lot of likes online. He didn’t always want to share his work. Perhaps he decided he didn’t want people to see these specific pieces. I think the title to this one was originally “Daisy’s Daisies”, but it could also just be “Daisies, Daisies” - I am not sure.]

“10/5/2019
I had a pretty bad day today. There were some really shitty customers at work. At least it’s Saturday tomorrow. I’m hanging out with “the gang” and I’d rather not, but it beats work. Some old acquaintances from school. Eh. Kinda sucks, I was a jittery mess when I last spoke to these people. I mean, I still chat with Tim on messenger sometimes. So at least it won’t be totally awkward, he still asks about my art but he seems like he’s changed a lot. I don’t really want to show him my paintings.
[untitled]
Familiar face of fleeting grace,
Reminded wryly of reconciled wrongs,
Creating collections and covering objections,
Briefly beguiling but boringly blank.”
[This poem isn’t titled. But, hi, I’m Tim. That’s me. I guess Jack didn’t really like it when I wanted to see his art. He was always pretty insecure about it. I always tried to big it up, though. I really was always impressed by it. I always told him he should show other people, but I don’t think he was confident enough. His paintings were great, though. As for the poem, I feel like there are a few layers. A lot of our friend group from school wasn’t really there for him when his mental health problems got worse. He probably wasn’t really up for seeing all of them. I also think this poem was about his art. Perhaps he felt like his art didn’t say enough, but I felt like it said so much.]

“11/5/2019
Oh my god. Being back with them. Ugh. Real shitty. Of course, questions about if I’m still painting. Yuck. Dance monkey dance. And fucking hell, felt like I was gonna die. Standing behind each of them were these projections of them. I guess how my subconscious sees them. Like some 7 deadly sins shit, but there are only 5 of them instead. Reunions really aren’t my thing.”
[No poem here. I didn’t realise Jack felt that strongly about people asking about his art. I don’t think he realised how interesting it was. Was he embarrassed to share it? Did he find it difficult to show art where he was expressing himself? He showed Daisy the sunflower painting. Why didn’t he show me?]

“12/5/2019
I think seeing them really put me back into a bad headspace. I had a bunch more crap today. Seeing people laughing and shit. I’m forgetting people’s faces again. Like I saw Daisy last weekend and now I can’t remember what she looks like. Seriously. A week. In my mind her face is just blank. This is how I was before. I don’t think I can see them again. I can’t go back to how I was. I’ve been doing good. Feeling good. Happy. Writing, with Daisy, doing paintings, doing poems. It’s been so good. I just want to show myself that I can do this on my own, but I’m worried that I can’t.”
[No poem. I’d really like to get back to Black Dream’s Lake.]

“20/5/2019
Ok, I think I’m back on track. Low points are part of it. I did another painting. It helped. I kind of neglected the writing for painting, but I suppose it’s ok to mix and match between the two.
Terrible Termites
Terrible termites,
Spiteful snakes,
Angry arachnids,
Horrible humans.
[This poem really makes a point about humanity. Jack seems to favour poems that incorporate alliteration over rhyming. It’s nice to see that he has developed his own unique style. Then again, I don’t know much about poetry. It could be a reference that I don’t know. Either way, I see the message here.]

“26/5/2019
Daisy and I are moving in together. She took Maximillian and all her clothes to mine tonight, and we’re gonna start on the rest of her stuff tomorrow. I’m a bit nervous. I’m happy, but nervous. I don’t want her to have to put up with me when I get bad and shit.
[untitled]
Menacing Maximillian mindlessly marches,
Mutely marvelling marvelous moisture,
he’s a millipede i dunno what else you can say.”
[It does tire me to see these unfinished poems, I really dislike it. Especially when there are some that are potentially really good, and he decides he isn’t happy with them and erases them. Yet here we have something that is unfinished, a poem about a millipede of all things, and Jack is fine to leave it like that. I’m half tempted to finish this poem myself, but I won’t.]

“4/6/2019
I want to quit my fucking job. Holy shit. Jerry Cunt is at it again. I don’t give a shit if you’ve had a bad day, all I did was put some fucking shampoo bottles in the wrong place. Ridiculous. It’s not my fault your wife hates you. Fucking hell. I can’t quit because money exists. I’m gonna start looking for something else. I was tired as shit as well.
Piss guzzler
Hi, my name is Jerry,
I guzzle piss,
My wife is really hairy,
She also guzzles piss,
My son smells like dairy,
He also guzzles piss,
My daughter is scary,
She also guzzles piss,
I fuck my mother,
She fucks like no other,
We suck one another,
My mother also guzzles piss.”
[Another really obscene poem. I’m considering skipping these. They don’t really showcase Jack’s art, or his talent.]

“Bday bash [15/6/2019]
Today is my birthday. I don’t really like a fuss being made about it, but it was nice to spend the day with the people who have been there for me. Richard and Lucy got me a set of paints. I mean, they were acrylics, and I do oil painting, but it’s the thought that counts. I’ll do a nice painting for them. Daisy got me a Japanese hornet, dead, obviously, in glass. She also got me a really nice watch. If I’m being honest, I was actually way more excited about the hornet. But the watch is really nice, it must’ve been expensive. It’s really nice. I think she got it because I told her a while back that my dad had a thing for fancy watches, so it’s actually really nice to know that she’s listening to what I say.
Birthday
Birthday sex,
A sexual hex,
I must annex,
Your genitals.”
[I am really getting sick of these low effort, boring, crude, obscene poems. I’m going to jump ahead to the next good poem that Jack writes.]
[These infantile poems go on for almost a year, I’m very disappointed. Eventually, though, Jack stops writing these.]

“13/4/2020
We had another argument today. Being stuck indoors has really done a number on us both. This shit is getting so dull. I mean, I don’t want to argue. I don’t want to upset her. But I can’t go out. I’m off work. We’re in the flat together all day. I’m getting bad again, and I snap at her because I’m afraid to open up about it. It’s so easy to write it down. Why can’t I just tell her what I’m going through?
Binding
Shackled the shameful,
Warranted by the wasteful,
I rot, unfulfilled.”
[Even though I’m not a fan of haikus, this is good. This is more like it. This is the Jack I know. It seems like he begins putting more effort into his poetry from this point onwards.]

“16/4/2020
Coronavirus can eat my ass. I fucking hate this shit. I want to go out like we used to. We used to have double dates every other weekend. Now what the fuck do we do. Nothing. I’ve even started talking to “the gang” in a group chat for something to do.
Recalibrate
Recalibrate your mind,
Reallocate your strife,
Now leave the world behind,
And enjoy your new life.
there’s a rhythm to it like you have to give each syllable the exact same amount of time, there has to be a little pause between each line. It’s like - - - - - - _ - - - - - - _ like that. You have to be a bit monotone with it.”
[I think a lot of people felt like this when they couldn’t go out and enjoy themselves during lockdown. With Jack’s added notes about the rhythm of the poem, it’s clear that he wanted to create a mechanical vibe around this piece. The monotony of day in day out, it’s robotic. That’s what he was going for. The dashes and underscores were the best way I could type up what Jack scribbled down.]

“19/4/2020
We’re starting to get on each other’s nerves. I have nothing to write, though, because every day is the same. I saw the cat while I was awake, though. It was trying to talk to me through the window, but I ignored it as best as I could. Hands reach for me from behind closed doors.
Engine
The mental machine that monitors my mind,
Shivers, shudders, moist fog rusts the shrine,
Static sine waves satiate my slipping decline,
Hailstone hands harnessed by hate.”
[This is Jack beginning to extend his artistic capabilities, as with the last poem playing with rhythm and length. The decision to keep the first three lines equal in length, and to then shorten the final line, shows this poem’s intentions as Jack reaches deeper to put more effort into his writing.]

“27/4/2020
Daisy ended things with me. I was too overbearing. But I can’t help worrying about our relationship when the cat is telling me that she hates me. He keeps saying it, over and over. And it puts me on edge. Even now, I’m still on edge about it, and she’s already gone. He keeps saying it. He just won’t fucking stop.
Black Dream’s Lake 5.
Wicked grins of rising hands,
Mouths on fingertips unmake,
Shushing words ’til holding stops,
Arms dangle deep in black dream’s lake."
[I’m so happy that Jack returned to Black Dream’s Lake. I can sense it coming to a natural close, it feels as if each of these self-contained works builds a natural progression. Jack is clearly envisioning something larger when he writes these. I wonder if he ever did a painting of the world he envisioned when writing his poems of Black Dream’s Lake.]

“2/5/2020
The cat keeps saying it. He’s bigger now. Hands and doors. They grab me. Cat is big.”
[No poem here.]

[no date]
He tells me I’m nothing. Nothing. No one. Nobody. Shit. Worthless. A waste. Dead. Dead inside. Rotting outside. I sit and rot all day. I stared at the wall while he berated me for hours. I didn’t eat anything today.
over
it’s not over, it never began,
clawed and grasped at by a writhing mass,
it’s over,
cat is big,
he is mean, he tells the truth."
[This entry wasn’t dated. This poem is also a bit low effort in comparison to the last one, but there appears to be an important message about Jack’s mental state here.]

“28/5/2020
I’m certain that Michael is skittering around behind my furniture. He doesn’t appear in my dreams anymore. When I hear him scratching things, I stare at the wall and wait for him to go. He just watches me sometimes. Then he whispers things that I can’t hear. I can hear them, though, because I can read his lips.
Trusting Michael
He speaks no lies,
Come, take my hand,
Stare into Michael’s eyes,
Feel his fur,
Is it there for you, too?
Can you feel Michael?
Can you feel his words?
They flutter about me like kisses,
Touch his fur,
What does he tell you?
Kill yourself.
Kill yourself.
Kill yourself.
Kill yourself.
Kill yourself.
Kill yourself.
Kill yourself.”
[The final line of this poem repeats itself until Jack reaches the end of the page. I think that Michael is a manifestation of all of the things that made Jack insecure about his art. I can’t help but think, if Jack would have painted how Michael was in his mind’s eye, it would have been his magnum opus.]

“4/6/2020
This is my final message. I’m not right for this place. Don’t blame yourself, Sunflower. I’d have only done this sooner, if it weren’t for you.
Goodbye.
Paddles guide and find my place,
Daybreak calls for me to wake,
The peace maker’s woven props,
I am pulled in by black dream’s lake.
[I think by Sunflower, Jack means me. After all, he left this diary to me, and I was talking to him and trying to encourage his creativity during lockdown. I think I must’ve helped him a lot. As for this final Black Dream’s Lake - Jack hung himself. The “woven props” of the peace maker is the rope, putting Jack at peace. It’s a beautiful end to the Black Dream’s Lake saga. He felt himself pulled in. Goodbye, Jack.]
- - -
[It appears that this isn’t the end. Jack has left something else for me to read in his journal. At the end of the book, an envelope was taped to the final page. I took it off and read what was written on the front.]
In this letter is something I need to write down. I need to write it, but I don’t want anyone to read it. I feel like if I write it, it’s out there. But I want to be the only one who sees it. Please, if by any means you come into possession of this letter, throw it away, or burn it.
[Despite what it says, Jack wouldn’t have left this to me if he didn’t want me to read it. I opened the envelope, and inside was a single piece of A4 paper, folded to fit. What is written there appears to be scrawled quite quickly, Jack’s handwriting doesn’t look as neat as it has been.]
See you soon.
Go ahead. Do what you did back in school.
Do it. Show everyone that you’re cool.
Post my art on instagram. Show them all.
“My mentally-ill friend made this, he should be in an art hall!”

Put crappy filters on to hide the imperfections,
Take what I love and give it your corrections,
Turn everything I do into a little song and dance,
“He’s so talented, a tortured soul, please give him a chance!”

If I wanted it posted, I’d post it myself,
But you know what’s good for my mental health,
Yeah, a thousand likes will fix my brain,
“Oh, what an artist, he’s in true pain!”

Fuck off. Really, I mean it.

I seriously hope that you get hurt.

I really, really mean it.

Remember in school, when you said I should put some blood on my paintings? When you found out I was self harming? I remember that. I think about it a lot. I wonder if you have ever thought about that since you said it? It really stuck with me.

Is that all I am? A malfunctioning musical monkey with broken cymbals to be gawked at. Do a backflip, Jack.

I hope that one day someone that you thought cared says some horrible shit like that.

I hope it hurts you.

Goodbye, Tim. It’s a shame you couldn’t respect my wishes just once.
[I think you’ve got it wrong. You’re just so talented. People need to see it. I have to post this one last thing, to show people your Black Dream’s Lake. Then I know you can rest in peace, when everyone sees your art.]

Black Dream’s Lake,
Binding shadows with vision,
Winding aside the path I take,
Cold Winter mist fogs breath’s dew drops,
I rest, my mind’s boat on black dream’s lake.

Branches grow their little leaves,
Pulled further down until they break,
Poison words pepper packet tops,
A single cigarette on black dream’s lake.

Whispered words and sliding eyes,
Whining willow’s woodgrain ache,
Fettered in mind the March hare hops,
Fingertips brush on black dream’s lake.

Wicked grins of rising hands,
Mouths on fingertips unmake,
Shushing words ’til holding stops,
Arms dangle deep in black dream’s lake.

Paddles guide and find my place,
Daybreak calls for me to wake,
The peace maker’s woven props,
I am pulled in by black dream’s lake.

[Thank you, Jack, for sharing with me your greatest piece. Black Dream’s Lake is the legacy you will leave, and I will be the one to share it with the world.]
submitted by TimothyNurley to nosleepworkshops [link] [comments]


2020.09.17 03:26 Ultimatehalo97 [The Lost Tome and the Silver, Unfading Flower] Megathread (September 16th, 2020)

[The Lost Tome and the Silver, Unfading Flower] Megathread (September 16th, 2020)

Previous Megathread:
To start this off!
Finally, everyone was waiting for this update for a very long time. In this update, we get a new Episode content, it comes with a free character. They are also giving us bonus daily free stones, from September 16th (today) ~ to September 26th. You will need to update your game through the app store or the play store to access all the new contents. Please check the notice in-game for more details or visit it here.
Official links:
Basic information about the new update: The Lost Tome and the Silver, Unfading Flower - Version 2.4.100 Date released: September 17th, 2020 at 3:00 AM UTC Requirements:
  • The app must be updated to Ver 2.4.100.
  • Chapter 13 of the main story must be cleared.
Where to start? * Elzion.
Gacha Characters:
  • Hardy (New!) The relentless rebel against the old state, his search for justice none can abate. You think this is a scam or somethin'? This one's on the up and up. I promise.
Character Weapon Armor Element Light/Shadow Rarity★ GL Wiki Tome Location
Hardy Fist Necklace Fire Shadow 4~5★ Link The Riftbreaker VH
Episode Character:
  • Sophia (New!) Her silver tears possess a power, one to end the story of a flower. This is... This is our story. I'm going to make sure it has a happy ending.
Character Weapon Armor Element Light/Shadow Rarity★ GL Wiki
Sophia Ax Necklace Water Shadow 2~5★ Link
(Re)Featured guides and Japanese guides:
What to expect next time?:
  • Some AS banners!
  • More broken Zone users!
  • Waiting for Jade 5*...
submitted by Ultimatehalo97 to AnotherEdenGlobal [link] [comments]


2020.09.15 22:47 mrchooch2u Seeking out the most Elusive Planeswalkers... Help!!

I need your guys' help. In a recent post I mentioned that I am attempting to complete a collection of planeswalkers that spans Magic the Gathering history. In my post I mentioned some criteria for my collection but many people were commenting things I was missing, cards I didn't even know existed and more insight that was honestly shocking!
So I need YOUR help to help fill in the blanks and identify any planeswalkers that have eluded me or other collectors of the same nature. I hope that this post can serve as a comprehensive guide for anyone looking to collect all the fantastic planeswalkers in this fantastic game.
Cards that I have collected so far are as follows
Some criteria for my personal collection
So! If any elusive planeswalkers come to mind that I have missed or neglected to mention please let me know! Any advice or critiques are more than welcome and again I hope to have a comprehensive list that is accessible to anyone looking for a COMPLETE collection of all variants of planeswalkers throughout the multiverse. I'll edit this post giving credit to anyone who drops new info! Thanks y'all!
Community Edits:
Community edits outside personal criteria: (not for me but maybe for some of you guys)
submitted by mrchooch2u to magicTCG [link] [comments]


2020.09.13 05:09 Mitch_NZ If you're curious about getting into the Neon Genesis Evangelion franchise, I wrote an absolute wall-of-text overview of everything you could possibly want to know before jumping in, with zero spoilers.

If you are the sort of person that likes to just hit the play button on a new show, the below isn't for you. If you're like me and like to be overprepared before jumping into a big franchise, read on...

What’s the deal with Neon Genesis Evangelion? I keep hearing about it.

Neon Genesis Evangelion is the name of an anime and also a manga series that both started in the mid 1990s. Since then, it’s grown into a major franchise with numerous spinoffs, and a merchandise empire to rival Star Wars. Beloved in its homeland of Japan and by fans all over the planet, Neon Genesis Evangelion’s early releases still hold up to the very best today, and as of 2020 the franchise is still active with new entries on the horizon.
If you’re curious about this series and want to see what all the fuss is about, you could just dive head-first into it, but if you’re like me, you suffer from severe franchise anxiety, worrying about getting into it “wrong”. Well, that’s where I come in. I’m going to tell you all the things that my overthinking ass wished I knew back when I first jumped into it a long time ago. You can read this whole guide and not be spoiled about any story details.
Throughout this guide, I’ll use the word “Evangelion” as an abbreviation for the franchise as a whole. As well as “Evangelion”, fans may use the full title “Neon Genesis Evangelion” to refer to the franchise, or the acronym “NGE”, or simply “Eva”.

I feel like this franchise is really complicated. Where do I even start? How does it all fit together?

I remember hearing a friend tell me that he was curious about getting into the series but felt overwhelmed by the many entries and didn’t know where to start. It was sad to hear that, because in actual fact, the franchise structure is very simple. This isn’t Gundam.
The most important part of Evangelion is what I’ll call the “core Evangelion story”, and it’s the primary continuity. This begins with the 26-episode anime series, plus the theatrical film The End of Evangelion. That’s it! That’s the core story. All you need to do is watch the series, then the movie. Everything else is a spinoff or bonus content in one form or another. There’s no “true” sequel to the core story*.
*sort-of

Okay, so I start with the TV series?

Yep! The original show (which I’ll just call NGE from here on in) ran for a single season of 26 episodes between 1995 and 1996 in Japan, and each episode aired in a half-hour timeslot, so episode lengths are generally 21-23 minutes each. It won’t take you long to get through it (although I recommend NOT binging it all at once for reasons I’ll go into later) unlike many other long-running franchises.
There are some key things to know before you start, though.

Director’s cut episodes

First of all, most versions of NGE released after the airing of the show include an alternative “director’s cut” for episodes 21 to 24. My DVD version allows you to select between the original cut and the director’s cut. If offered a choice, always choose the director’s cut of these episodes. The director’s cuts include several minutes per episode of additional footage. These extra scenes are critical to understanding the story. If you are watching on Netflix, don’t worry, episodes 21 through 24 are the director’s cut versions.

Episode Titles

These can get confusing. If you want to talk about specific episodes with other fans, you may want to try and remember the episode numbers. The titles work too, but there are two of them for each episode, and there are numerous translations of each.
For example, episode three is titled 鳴らない、電話 in Japanese, which roughly translates to “The Phone That Doesn’t Ring”, but it also has an English title, which is “A Transfer”. To make matters worse, the English titles were chosen by Gainax, the animation studio, who are Japanese and aren’t native English speakers, so some of them are a bit awkward-sounding.

Language

We need to talk about dubs and subs. NGE was made by a Japanese studio for Japanese audiences and used a Japanese cast speaking Japanese. As the show soared in popularity, broadcasters around the world took notice and moved quickly to secure rights to dub the show in foreign languages. Since this guide is in English, I’ll only be talking about English adaptations, however the show is available dubbed and subbed in many other languages, and I understand that some of the dubs are considered excellent.

The original Japanese

The original Japanese voice actors deliver a phenomenal, iconic performance. My personal preference is to watch the show in Japanese with English subtitles, and the main reason is because I love the Japanese voice cast and I think they do the best job of conveying the emotions of the characters. Plus, Megumi Ogata’s screams… Blood-curdling. I wouldn’t trade that for anything.
The show is set in a version of Japan, and cultural references to Japan are frequent. In my opinion, these references feel more natural in the original Japanese language, as compared to the dubs which have to find ways to make them make sense in American-accented English.
Most versions of NGE use the same translation for the subtitles, and I think it’s a great translation that captures the intention of the original Japanese whilst making sensible choices to ensure that it reads naturally in English. The Netflix subs are a new translation, and are much stricter in sticking to the Japanese wording, but many longtime fans are unhappy with the way certain scenes appear to have their meaning or context quite significantly altered by this new translation. I haven’t closely compared the two translations, but some of the things I’ve read about the Netflix translation certainly sound concerning to me as a longtime fan. Still – if Netflix is your only means of watching the series, I don’t think it’s a deal-breaker!
The downside of watching a subtitled anime is the same as always: Your immersion in the visuals is hampered by the need to keep an eye on the bottom of the screen to read subtitles, and NGE’s dialogue can get a bit hectic at times. You’ll need to be an attentive reader to keep up with the play at some points. I find that I can still appreciate the visuals of the show while reading the subtitles, but for many, it’s far more preferable to hear the dialogue in their native language, and for that, you’ll need to decide between the two English dubs that have been officially released.

The original English dub

The original English dub was produced by ADV Films not long after the show started airing in Japan, and the studio were operating on a tight budget, short timeframe and a limited pool of voice acting talent. Also it was 1996, and anime dubbing in 1996 was a very different artform to today. The result is that the original dub of NGE sounds a bit like a children’s cartoon from 1996… Which is exactly what it was in many ways. Despite this, the original dub has many passionate fans, and as the series progresses, the performances increase in quality. Most of the main voice cast returned for later series entries as well, and they’ve only got better over time.

The Netflix dub

Netflix surprised everyone when in 2019 they brought the entire series to their platform… With a brand-new translation and dub. This new dub has generated a lot of controversy, and the main reason is that none of the original voice cast reprised their role, and many were never even invited to audition. It also has a reworked script, just as the subtitles have, and many of the changes upset longtime fans. On the other hand, it’s a much more polished and professional dub than the original, and the translation is closer to the original Japanese in many ways.
My advice to first-timers is to not sweat the decision too much, but if you’re comfortable with reading subtitles, I still think watching it in Japanese is the best way to experience it, but go with whatever suits you best!

The Music

Shiro Sagisu composed the music for NGE, and it’s fantastic. You’re in for a treat. The series’ opening theme is famous, and also a bit of a meme. All I’ll say is if you only heard the opening theme and had to guess what the show was like, you’d be very, very wrong.
The Netflix dub made a pretty major change to the music in that they could not get the rights to the original ending theme, the classic Bart Howard song “Fly Me to the Moon”. Instead, they use one of the series’ prominent cues for the ending theme. The replacement music actually works quite well, but as a longtime fan, it’s difficult to imagine each episode not ending with “Fly Me to the Moon”. If you’re a newbie, it probably won’t make much difference at all, but if you want the “classic” experience, you’ll need to find a version other than the Netflix one.

The Format

NGE is in 4:3 ratio. If your version is somehow in widescreen, press stop immediately because something has gone very wrong. Learn to love the elegance of the 4:3 format.
The whole series is now available in HD, and it looks great, however the animation isn’t so richly detailed that you lose out by watching it in SD. If you only have a DVD copy, don’t sweat it trying to find an HD copy!
There are a fair few releases of the series out there, some of which are highly collectible. I’m not an expert on the differences between them, but as far as I know, there aren’t any “must-avoid” prints you need to worry about.

So, uh, what’s Evangelion even about?

Ask this to most fans and they’ll probably chuckle before a bit before they say anything. That’s because there’s quite a few ways to describe it, and they all sound either shallow and boring, or pretentious and overblown.
The core Evangelion story is about monsters who attack a city in Japan, and the only way to fight them off is by using giant robots, who all happen to be piloted by teenagers. Pretty standard premise, really.

It sounds like a straightforward mecha show.

Glad you said that, because NGE is indeed an entry in the mecha (giant robot) genre of anime.
You’ll hear the phrase “deconstruction” mentioned a lot in reference to this show, but don’t be put off by that. All it means is that prior to 1995, mecha anime and manga were very popular, and they tended to follow a pretty rigid set of tropes. One of NGE’s calling cards is that it intentionally dodges many of the clichés of mecha shows by trying to show how teenagers piloting giant robots against a mysterious enemy would really go down in real life.
The deconstruction aspect of NGE, although prominent, is also not particularly important to a new viewer in 2020, particularly if you aren’t familiar with earlier mecha series. If you are though, I think you’ll appreciate how NGE deals with what seems like a standard premise.
NGE was animated by Gainax, a famous anime studio, and the director was Hideaki Anno. If you’ve seen the 2016 film Shin Godzilla which Anno directed, you’ll notice many similarities between that and this series. If you’ve seen the 1984 Hayao Miyazaki film Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, you might see things in NGE that remind you of the scene where the Giant Warrior attacks. Guess who animated that scene!

I heard this show was deep. How deep are we talking?

NGE is the butt of many a meme due to its reputation as a “deep” anime with a complex (or incomprehensible, depending on who you ask) story and themes. My advice is to forget all that. Your expectations going into this show need to be reset if you really want to enjoy it for what it is. All you need to know is that the story is a wild ride, and no matter how clued-up you think you are, it’s going to go places you don’t expect.
You don’t need to do preparatory readings of philosophy papers or religious texts, just go into it with an open mind, and perhaps a reflection on what your own life goals are, how you motivate yourself to achieve them, and also your experiences trying to create and maintain relationships with others. Casting your mind back to how you were in your early teens will help get into the mindset of the main characters too.

Great. I think I’m ready to get started.

That’s good. Just a couple more bits of advice from me:

So I finished the series. What’s this about a movie?

To be clear, there are no spoilers in this guide, so feel free to read this section even if you haven’t watched the series yet!
You’ll hear all sorts of things about The End of Evangelion, the film that was originally released in 1997. All you need to know right now is that it’s the conclusion of the core story. You could not watch it, and leave the story as it is concluded at the end of the series, but you really shouldn’t. This movie is too good to skip, even if it has some notable differences from the series in terms of its general feel and vibe.
You may see the film referred to as episodes 25’ and 26’ (note the apostrophes), or as a replacement ending for the TV series (which also has episodes 25 and 26). Don’t overthink it too much – the film and the end of the series overlap in some ways, which is why the film is structured as two “episodes” that share a number with the final two in the series.
All I’ll say about The End of Evangelion is that you may think after finishing the series that you have been desensitized to the types of things the franchise throws at you. You are wrong. This movie is an even wilder ride than the show, and you are really going to want to take some time to go for a long, meditative walk both before and after it.

I have questions. Lots of questions.

That’s normal. You could watch some of the many “Evangelion explained” videos on YouTube, but I haven’t yet found one that I was really satistfied with. In my opinion, the most rewarding way to get your questions answered is to interact with other Evangelion fans and get their perspective on what it’s all about and exactly what happened. Again, feel free to DM me for this purpose! The Evangelion subreddit is a great community and will be more than happy to share their thoughts with you.
Like many stories, the “correct” interpretation of it is the one that means the most to you. I have my own specific interpretation that works for me, and that may diverge from many other fans’, but that’s okay! Hideako Anno himself would be delighted at all the different meanings that various fans have taken away with them and held onto tightly.

What’s this Death and Rebirth movie? Didn’t it come out before The End of Evangelion?

Skip it. Yes, it did come out between the series and The End of Evangelion, but you don’t need to watch it. It’s a recap of the series, plus an early edit of the first third of The End of Evangelion. You will not miss anything by skipping it (provided you saw the director’s cuts of episodes 21-24). Death(true) and Death(true)2 are re-edits of the recap part of Death and Rebirth. If you hear about The Revival of Evangelion, it’s simply an edited together version of Death(true)2 and The End of Evangelion.

You said something about a manga series at the beginning there?

Like Star Wars in 1977, Evangelion’s famous debut wasn’t actually its debut. Yoshiyuki Sadamoto released the first issue of a manga also entitled Neon Genesis Evangelion at the very end of 1994, 10 months before the show started! Sadamoto was the character designer for the TV show, and as a result, the art in the manga is extremely consistent. He nails it in every chapter.
Incredibly, it took Sadamoto almost 19 years to finish the series, which exists in a separate continuity to the show. Certain plot points play out very differently, and the characterization differs in many places, but the overall story arc is the one we know and love from the anime.
I highly recommend the manga to fans of the show, despite it telling a very similar story. You’ll appreciate it best if you’ve taken a bit of a break between the anime before starting the manga.
There are 13 volumes of the manga, and they’re fairly easy to come by. The easiest way to read them is by picking up the omnibus editions which have multiple volumes within each. There are five omnibuses collecting the entire series.

I swear there are way more movies than what you’ve mentioned so far.

Uh, yeah. We’ll get to those. First of all, let’s wrap up some of the other Evangelion-related media that’s out there:
Neon Genesis Evangelion: Angelic Days is a spinoff manga set in an alternate continuity. It has shades of the core Evangelion story but with a romantic shoujo twist. Six volumes were released between 2003 and 2005.
Neon Genesis Evangelion: Shinji Ikari Riasing Project is another spinoff manga set in another alternate continuity. It’s very different to the core Evangelion story and has much more comedy and fanservice. 18 volumes were released between 2005 and 2016.
Evangelion: Campus Apocalypse (aka Neon Genesis Evangelion Academy: Record of Heaven's Descent in Japanese) is yet another spinoff manga in another alternate continuity, this time with a high school mystery premise. Three volumes were released in 2007.
Petit Eva: [email protected] is a chibi-style parody manga, plus a series of animated shorts, where everyone gets up to wacky hijinks completely unconnected to any of the other continuities. If you are desperately searching this out, you may have taken your Evangelion obsession a bit too far.
There are quite a few video games that are part of the series, but most were only released in Japan and aren’t considered canon. The exception is Neon Genesis Evangelion 2, originally released for the Playstation 2 in 2003 in Japan only. As a reward for completing each scenario, the player is given access to increasingly-detailed information on various Evangelion topics (Called the “Classified Information”). The complete Classified Information includes a lot of information not found anywhere else in the series, and what’s more, it seems to be aligned with the original anime’s continuity. Many of the “Evangelion Explained” videos you’ll see will heavily rely on this information. It’s debated whether it’s truly “canon” or not, but apparently Hideako Anno was involved in the writing. In my opinion, the Classified Information makes enough sense that I do consider it canon, and if you’re itching for answers after finishing the core story, you should look it up – English translations are easy to find.
There are a bunch of one-off publications of dubious canonicity that you may wish to look up, and heaps of art books and other behind-the-scenes material, much of it only in Japanese.
The merchandise situation is… Out of control. You will struggle to name a product that has not had an Evangelion-themed version of it produced at some point.

Okay, can we talk about these other movies now?

The Rebuild of Evangelion is a series of four full-length theatrical films set in a new Evangelion continuity.
If you want to be absolutely in the dark about what to expect from these movies, you should skip this section. Although I won’t give away any story spoilers, I will hint at a little about what these movies “feel” like.
The Rebuild films are infamous for a number of reasons:
  1. The first film was released in 2007, and the second was supposed to come out later that year, and the third and fourth were supposed to be released together in 2008. The second film didn’t come out until 2009, the third not until 2012, and the fourth… No release date as of 2020. Yeah.
  2. They’re not made by Gainax, but by a new studio called Khara. Hideako Anno is still director though. I think Khara do a great job, but not all fans are fans.
  3. Anno pitched the series as a kind of “re-make” of the original TV series in theatrical form, but with the benefit of more than a decade’s worth of the director’s personal growth and a very healthy animation budget. It was suggested that the characters and story would be re-tooled for a modern audience, and that the whole thing would be more accessible and coherent than the original continuity. That... was a lie.
  4. Are the films really a new continuity? Don’t say I didn’t warn you if you choose to obliviously bring this topic up around passionate fans.
Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone was released in 2007 and follows the first arc of the anime very closely, shot-for-shot for much of it. It’s great to see those scenes animated in glorious HD though.
Evangelion 2.0 You Can (Not) Advance was released in 2009 and introduces a brand new, Rebuild-exclusive character into the mix. To say it diverges from the original story would be an understatement.
Evangelion 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo was released in 2012 and should probably require a waiver to be signed before it is viewed.
Evangelion 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time was supposed to come out in 2020, but the coronavirus caused it to be put on hold indefinitely. The film is apparently complete, but knowing Anno, that doesn’t necessarily mean much. At this point, I wouldn’t be surprised if the film goes through three more titles and a complete re-write before it finally comes out.
Most of the original English and Japanese voice casts returned for the Rebuild films with a few exceptions, and the performances are better than they’ve ever been. The English dub of 3.0 was a bit of a drama, with it initially premiering in 2013 in cinemas, but with no DVD release in sight. Khara apparently sent the dubbing team (Funimation) back to the drawing board. The agonizingly re-worked dub was finally released on DVD in 2016.
The DVD and Blu-ray releases of the films have slightly altered numbering: 1.11, 2.22, 3.33 etc. This reflects that many corrections and additions were included for these releases compared to the versions shown in cinemas.

I can’t really tell if you’re recommending these movies or not…

The Rebuild series is frustrating, perplexing, sometimes rage-inducing, but it’s the true successor to the original core story, with Hideako Anno’s creative vision in full bloom. You need to see these movies if you’re an Evangelion fan. However, you also need to completely re-set your expectations. Don’t stumble into these movies right after the credits roll on The End of Evangelion. You’re going to want to give it some time, get a few life experiences under your belt, and then sit down with a fresh palate to experience this very different iteration of the Evangelion story.

Why do people go on and on about Evangelion? The fans seem kind of rabid sometimes.

If you’ve read this far, you will probably have got the sense that any media franchise that inspires people to write guides like this (and many, many other far more impressive fan contributions) must have some sort of cult-like appeal. That’s pretty much the case for Evangelion, and the fans are pretty notorious for their passion and geekery. That can be said for quite a few franchises, but I think Evangelion is special because it genuinely changes people’s lives.
Hideako Anno has struggled with depression on-and-off throughout his life, and Evangelion is a product of that struggle. Evangelion tries to grapple with the “why am I really here” question in a way that very few other stories have. I still remember the moments after I first finished the series, my heart beating fast, and in the ensuing days I mulled over what it all meant. After a while, and some discussions with other fans, I started to put together my own interpretation. The immense satisfaction and comfort I felt after deciding on the meaning that I wanted to take away stays with me to this day, and the lessons I took from it are ones I still regularly use to navigate my own life.
Ask any Evangelion fan and they’ll have a story similar to this. That’s why they’re so fiercely protective of it. It’s much more than a media franchise – it’s an introduction to a lifelong practice of self-reflection and conscious growth, and that’s not a small thing.
Regardless of what you get out of Evangelion, at the very least I hope you have a blast enjoying it, and becoming part of the huge and wonderful community of Evangelion fans around the world.
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For the love of all that is holy, please don't post spoilers in the comments!
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2020.09.12 10:14 Mitch_NZ How to get into Neon Genesis Evangelion: A 100% spoiler-free guide for complete newbies

What’s the deal with Neon Genesis Evangelion? I keep hearing about it.

Neon Genesis Evangelion is the name of an anime and also a manga series that both started in the mid 1990s. Since then, it’s grown into a major franchise with numerous spinoffs, and a merchandise empire to rival Star Wars. Beloved in its homeland of Japan and by fans all over the planet, Neon Genesis Evangelion’s early releases still hold up to the very best today, and as of 2020 the franchise is still active with new entries on the horizon.
If you’re curious about this series and want to see what all the fuss is about, you could just dive head-first into it, but if you’re like me, you suffer from severe franchise anxiety, worrying about getting into it “wrong”. Well, that’s where I come in. I’m going to tell you all the things that my overthinking ass wished I knew back when I first jumped into it a long time ago. You can read this whole guide and not be spoiled about any story details.
Throughout this guide, I’ll use the word “Evangelion” as an abbreviation for the franchise as a whole. As well as “Evangelion”, fans may use the full title “Neon Genesis Evangelion” to refer to the franchise, or the acronym “NGE”, or simply “Eva”.

I feel like this franchise is really complicated. Where do I even start? How does it all fit together?

I remember hearing a friend tell me that he was curious about getting into the series but felt overwhelmed by the many entries and didn’t know where to start. It was sad to hear that, because in actual fact, the franchise structure is very simple. This isn’t Gundam.
The most important part of Evangelion is what I’ll call the “core Evangelion story”, and it’s the primary continuity. This begins with the 26-episode anime series, plus the theatrical film The End of Evangelion. That’s it! That’s the core story. All you need to do is watch the series, then the movie. Everything else is a spinoff or bonus content in one form or another. There’s no “true” sequel to the core story*.
*…or is there?

Okay, so I start with the TV series?

Yep! The original show (which I’ll just call NGE from here on in) ran for a single season of 26 episodes between 1995 and 1996 in Japan, and each episode aired in a half-hour timeslot, so episode lengths are generally 21-23 minutes each. It won’t take you long to get through it (although I recommend NOT binging it all at once for reasons I’ll go into later) unlike many other long-running franchises.
There are some key things to know before you start, though:

Director’s cut episodes

First of all, most versions of NGE released after the airing of the show include an alternative “director’s cut” for episodes 21 to 24. My DVD version allows you to select between the original cut and the director’s cut. If offered a choice, always choose the director’s cut of these episodes. The director’s cuts include several minutes per episode of additional footage. These extra scenes are critical to understanding the story. If you are watching on Netflix, don’t worry, episodes 21 through 24 are the director’s cut versions.

Episode Titles

These can get confusing. If you want to talk about specific episodes with other fans, you may want to try and remember the episode numbers. The titles work too, but there are two of them for each episode, and there are numerous translations of each.
For example, episode three is titled 鳴らない、電話 in Japanese, which roughly translates to “The Phone That Doesn’t Ring”, but it also has an English title, which is “A Transfer”. To make matters worse, the English titles were chosen by Gainax, the animation studio, who are Japanese and aren’t native English speakers, so some of them are a bit awkward-sounding.

Language

We need to talk about dubs and subs. NGE was made by a Japanese studio for Japanese audiences and used a Japanese cast speaking Japanese. As the show soared in popularity, broadcasters around the world took notice and moved quickly to secure rights to dub the show in foreign languages. Since this guide is in English, I’ll only be talking about English adaptations, however the show is available dubbed and subbed in many other languages, and I understand that some of the dubs are considered excellent.

The original Japanese

The original Japanese voice actors deliver a phenomenal, iconic performance. My personal preference is to watch the show in Japanese with English subtitles, and the main reason is because I love the Japanese voice cast and I think they do the best job of conveying the emotions of the characters. Plus, Megumi Ogata’s screams… Blood-curdling. I wouldn’t trade that for anything.
The show is set in a version of Japan, and cultural references to Japan are frequent. In my opinion, these references feel more natural in the original Japanese language, as compared to the dubs which have to find ways to make them make sense in American-accented English.
Most versions of NGE use the same translation for the subtitles, and I think it’s a great translation that captures the intention of the original Japanese whilst making sensible choices to ensure that it reads naturally in English. The Netflix subs are a new translation, and are much stricter in sticking to the Japanese wording, but many longtime fans are unhappy with the way certain scenes appear to have their meaning or context quite significantly altered by this new translation. I haven’t closely compared the two translations, but some of the things I’ve read about the Netflix translation certainly sound concerning to me as a longtime fan. Still – if Netflix is your only means of watching the series, I don’t think it’s a deal-breaker!
The downside of watching a subtitled anime is the same as always: Your immersion in the visuals is hampered by the need to keep an eye on the bottom of the screen to read subtitles, and NGE’s dialogue can get a bit hectic at times. You’ll need to be an attentive reader to keep up with the play at some points. I find that I can still appreciate the visuals of the show while reading the subtitles, but for many, it’s far more preferable to hear the dialogue in their native language, and for that, you’ll need to decide between the two English dubs that have been officially released.

The original English dub

The original English dub was produced by ADV Films not long after the show started airing in Japan, and the studio were operating on a tight budget, short timeframe and a limited pool of voice acting talent. Also it was 1996, and anime dubbing in 1996 was a very different artform to today. The result is that the original dub of NGE sounds a bit like a children’s cartoon from 1996… Which is exactly what it was in many ways. Despite this, the original dub has many passionate fans, and as the series progresses, the performances increase in quality. Most of the main voice cast returned for later series entries as well, and they’ve only got better over time.

The Netflix dub

Netflix surprised everyone when in 2019 they brought the entire series to their platform… With a brand-new translation and dub. This new dub has generated a lot of controversy, and the main reason is that none of the original voice cast reprised their role, and many were never even invited to audition. It also has a reworked script, just as the subtitles have, and many of the changes upset longtime fans. On the other hand, it’s a much more polished and professional dub than the original, and the translation is closer to the original Japanese in many ways.
My advice to first-timers is to not sweat the decision too much, but if you’re comfortable with reading subtitles, I still think watching it in Japanese is the best way to experience it, but go with whatever suits you best!

The Music

Shiro Sagisu composed the music for NGE, and it’s fantastic. You’re in for a treat. The series’ opening theme is famous, and also a bit of a meme. All I’ll say is if you only heard the opening theme and had to guess what the show was like, you’d be very, very wrong.
The Netflix dub made a pretty major change to the music in that they could not get the rights to the original ending theme, the classic Bart Howard song “Fly Me to the Moon”. Instead, they use one of the series’ prominent cues for the ending theme. The replacement music actually works quite well, but as a longtime fan, it’s difficult to imagine each episode not ending with “Fly Me to the Moon”. If you’re a newbie, it probably won’t make much difference at all, but if you want the “classic” experience, you’ll need to find a version other than the Netflix one.

The Format

NGE is in 4:3 ratio. If your version is somehow in widescreen, press stop immediately because something has gone very wrong. Learn to love the elegance of the 4:3 format.
The whole series is now available in HD, and it looks great, however the animation isn’t so richly detailed that you lose out by watching it in SD. If you only have a DVD copy, don’t sweat it trying to find an HD copy!
There are a fair few releases of the series out there, some of which are highly collectible. I’m not an expert on the differences between them, but as far as I know, there aren’t any “must-avoid” prints you need to worry about.

So, uh, what’s Evangelion even about?

Ask this to most fans and they’ll probably chuckle before a bit before they say anything. That’s because there’s quite a few ways to describe it, and they all sound either shallow and boring, or pretentious and overblown.
The core Evangelion story is about monsters who attack a city in Japan, and the only way to fight them off is by using giant robots, who all happen to be piloted by teenagers. Pretty standard premise, really.

It sounds like a straightforward mecha show.

Glad you said that, because NGE is indeed an entry in the mecha (giant robot) genre of anime.
You’ll hear the phrase “deconstruction” mentioned a lot in reference to this show, but don’t be put off by that. All it means is that prior to 1995, mecha anime and manga were very popular, and they tended to follow a pretty rigid set of tropes. One of NGE’s calling cards is that it intentionally dodges many of the clichés of mecha shows by trying to show how teenagers piloting giant robots against a mysterious enemy would really go down in real life.
The deconstruction aspect of NGE, although prominent, is also not particularly important to a new viewer in 2020, particularly if you aren’t familiar with earlier mecha series. If you are though, I think you’ll appreciate how NGE deals with what seems like a standard premise.
NGE was animated by Gainax, a famous anime studio, and the director was Hideaki Anno. If you’ve seen the 2016 film Shin Godzilla which Anno directed, you’ll notice many similarities between that and this series. If you’ve seen the 1984 Hayao Miyazaki film Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, you might see things in NGE that remind you of the scene where the Giant Warrior attacks. Guess who animated that scene!

I heard this show was deep. How deep are we talking?

NGE is the butt of many a meme due to its reputation as a “deep” anime with a complex (or incomprehensible, depending on who you ask) story and themes. My advice is to forget all that. Your expectations going into this show need to be reset if you really want to enjoy it for what it is. All you need to know is that the story is a wild ride, and no matter how clued-up you think you are, it’s going to go places you don’t expect.
You don’t need to do preparatory readings of philosophy papers or religious texts, just go into it with an open mind, and perhaps a reflection on what your own life goals are, how you motivate yourself to achieve them, and also your experiences trying to create and maintain relationships with others. Casting your mind back to how you were in your early teens will help get into the mindset of the main characters too.

Great. I think I’m ready to get started.

That’s good. Just a few more bits of advice from me:

So I finished the series. What’s this about a movie?

To be clear, there are no spoilers in this guide, so feel free to read this section even if you haven’t watched the series yet!
You’ll hear all sorts of things about The End of Evangelion, the film that was originally released in 1997. All you need to know right now is that it’s the conclusion of the core story. You could not watch it, and leave the story as it is concluded at the end of the series, but you really shouldn’t. This movie is too good to skip, even if it has some notable differences from the series in terms of its general feel and vibe.
You may see the film referred to as episodes 25’ and 26’ (note the apostrophes), or as a replacement ending for the TV series (which also has episodes 25 and 26). Don’t overthink it too much – the film and the end of the series overlap in some ways, which is why the film is structured as two “episodes” that share a number with the final two in the series.
All I’ll say about The End of Evangelion is that you may think after finishing the series that you have been desensitized to the types of things the franchise throws at you. You are wrong. This movie is an even wilder ride than the show, and you are really going to want to take some time to go for a long, meditative walk both before and after it.

I have questions. Lots of questions.

That’s normal. You could watch some of the many “Evangelion explained” videos on YouTube, but I haven’t yet found one that I was really satistfied with. In my opinion, the most rewarding way to get your questions answered is to interact with other Evangelion fans and get their perspective on what it’s all about and exactly what happened. Again, feel free to DM me for this purpose! The Evangelion subreddit is a great community and will be more than happy to share their thoughts with you.
Like many stories, the “correct” interpretation of it is the one that means the most to you. I have my own specific interpretation that works for me, and that may diverge from many other fans’, but that’s okay! Hideako Anno himself would be delighted at all the different meanings that various fans have taken away with them and held onto tightly.

What’s this Death and Rebirth movie? Didn’t it come out before The End of Evangelion?

Skip it. Yes, it did come out between the series and The End of Evangelion, but you don’t need to watch it. It’s a recap of the series, plus an early edit of the first third of The End of Evangelion. You will not miss anything by skipping it (provided you saw the director’s cuts of episodes 21-24). Death(true) and Death(true)2 are re-edits of the recap part of Death and Rebirth. If you hear about The Revival of Evangelion, it’s simply an edited together version of Death(true)2 and The End of Evangelion.

You said something about a manga series at the beginning there?

Like Star Wars in 1977, Evangelion’s famous debut wasn’t actually its debut. Yoshiyuki Sadamoto released the first issue of a manga also entitled Neon Genesis Evangelion at the very end of 1994, 10 months before the show started! Sadamoto was the character designer for the TV show, and as a result, the art in the manga is extremely consistent. He nails it in every chapter.
Incredibly, it took Sadamoto almost 19 years to finish the series, which exists in a separate continuity to the show. Certain plot points play out very differently, and the characterization differs in many places, but the overall story arc is the one we know and love from the anime.
I highly recommend the manga to fans of the show, despite it telling a very similar story. You’ll appreciate it best if you’ve taken a bit of a break between the anime before starting the manga.
There are 13 volumes of the manga, and they’re fairly easy to come by. The easiest way to read them is by picking up the omnibus editions which have multiple volumes within each. There are five omnibuses collecting the entire series.

I swear there are way more movies than what you’ve mentioned so far.

Uh, yeah. We’ll get to those. First of all, let’s wrap up some of the other Evangelion-related media that’s out there:
Neon Genesis Evangelion: Angelic Days is a spinoff manga set in an alternate continuity. It has shades of the core Evangelion story but with a romantic shoujo twist. Six volumes were released between 2003 and 2005.
Neon Genesis Evangelion: Shinji Ikari Riasing Project is another spinoff manga set in another alternate continuity. It’s very different to the core Evangelion story and has much more comedy and fanservice. 18 volumes were released between 2005 and 2016.
Evangelion: Campus Apocalypse (aka Neon Genesis Evangelion Academy: Record of Heaven's Descent in Japanese) is yet another spinoff manga in another alternate continuity, this time with a high school mystery premise. Three volumes were released in 2007.
Petit Eva: [email protected] is a chibi-style parody manga, plus a series of animated shorts, where everyone gets up to wacky hijinks completely unconnected to any of the other continuities. If you are desperately searching this out, you may have taken your Evangelion obsession a bit too far.
There are quite a few video games that are part of the series, but most were only released in Japan and aren’t considered canon. The exception is Neon Genesis Evangelion 2, originally released for the Playstation 2 in 2003 in Japan only. As a reward for completing each scenario, the player is given access to increasingly-detailed information on various Evangelion topics (Called the “Classified Information”). The complete Classified Information includes a lot of information not found anywhere else in the series, and what’s more, it seems to be aligned with the original anime’s continuity. Many of the “Evangelion Explained” videos you’ll see will heavily rely on this information. It’s debated whether it’s truly “canon” or not, but apparently Hideako Anno was involved in the writing. In my opinion, the Classified Information makes enough sense that I do consider it canon, and if you’re itching for answers after finishing the core story, you should look it up – English translations are easy to find.
There are a bunch of one-off publications of dubious canonicity that you may wish to look up, and heaps of art books and other behind-the-scenes material, much of it only in Japanese.
The merchandise situation is… Out of control. You will struggle to name a product that has not had an Evangelion-themed version of it produced at some point.

Okay, can we talk about these other movies now?

The Rebuild of Evangelion is a series of four full-length theatrical films set in a new Evangelion continuity.
If you want to be absolutely in the dark about what to expect from these movies, you should skip this section. Although I won’t give away any story spoilers, I will hint at a little about what these movies “feel” like.
The Rebuild films are infamous for a number of reasons:
  1. The first film was released in 2007, and the second was supposed to come out later that year, and the third and fourth were supposed to be released together in 2008. The second film didn’t come out until 2009, the third not until 2012, and the fourth… No release date as of 2020. Yeah.
  2. They’re not made by Gainax, but by a new studio called Khara. Hideako Anno is still director though. I think Khara do a great job, but not all fans are fans.
  3. Anno pitched the series as a kind of “re-make” of the original TV series in theatrical form, but with the benefit of more than a decade’s worth of the director’s personal growth and a very healthy animation budget. It was suggested that the characters and story would be re-tooled for a modern audience, and that the whole thing would be more accessible and coherent than the original continuity. That... was a lie.
  4. Are the films really a new continuity? Don’t say I didn’t warn you if you choose to obliviously bring this topic up around passionate fans.
Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone was released in 2007 and follows the first arc of the anime very closely, shot-for-shot for much of it. It’s great to see those scenes animated in glorious HD though.
Evangelion 2.0 You Can (Not) Advance was released in 2009 and introduces a brand new, Rebuild-exclusive character into the mix. To say it diverges from the original story would be an understatement.
Evangelion 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo was released in 2012 and should probably require a waiver to be signed before it is viewed.
Evangelion 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time was supposed to come out in 2020, but the coronavirus caused it to be put on hold indefinitely. The film is apparently complete, but knowing Anno, that doesn’t necessarily mean much. At this point, I wouldn’t be surprised if the film goes through three more titles and a complete re-write before it finally comes out.
Most of the original English and Japanese voice casts returned for the Rebuild films with a few exceptions, and the performances are better than they’ve ever been. The English dub of 3.0 was a bit of a drama, with it initially premiering in 2013 in cinemas, but with no DVD release in sight. Khara apparently sent the dubbing team (Funimation) back to the drawing board. The agonizingly re-worked dub was finally released on DVD in 2016.
The DVD and Blu-ray releases of the films have slightly altered numbering: 1.11, 2.22, 3.33 etc. This reflects that many corrections and additions were included for these releases compared to the versions shown in cinemas.

I can’t really tell if you’re recommending these movies or not…

The Rebuild series is frustrating, perplexing, sometimes rage-inducing, but it’s the true successor to the original core story, with Hideako Anno’s creative vision in full bloom. You need to see these movies if you’re an Evangelion fan. However, you also need to completely re-set your expectations. Don’t stumble into these movies right after the credits roll on The End of Evangelion. You’re going to want to give it some time, get a few life experiences under your belt, and then sit down with a fresh palate to experience this very different iteration of the Evangelion story.

Why do people go on and on about Evangelion? The fans seem kind of rabid sometimes.

If you’ve read this far, you will probably have got the sense that any media franchise that inspires people to write guides like this (and many, many other far more impressive fan contributions) must have some sort of cult-like appeal. That’s pretty much the case for Evangelion, and the fans are pretty notorious for their passion and geekery. That can be said for quite a few franchises, but I think Evangelion is special because it genuinely changes people’s lives.
Hideako Anno has struggled with depression on-and-off throughout his life, and Evangelion is a product of that struggle. Evangelion tries to grapple with the “why am I really here” question in a way that very few other stories have. I still remember the moments after I first finished the series, my heart beating fast, and in the ensuing days I mulled over what it all meant. After a while, and some discussions with other fans, I started to put together my own interpretation. The immense satisfaction and comfort I felt after deciding on the meaning that I wanted to take away stays with me to this day, and the lessons I took from it are ones I still regularly use to navigate my own life.
Ask any Evangelion fan and they’ll have a story similar to this. That’s why they’re so fiercely protective of it. It’s much more than a media franchise – it’s an introduction to a lifelong practice of self-reflection and conscious growth, and that’s not a small thing.
Regardless of what you get out of Evangelion, at the very least I hope you have a blast enjoying it, and becoming part of the huge and wonderful community of Evangelion fans around
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How did you find this guide? I'd love to hear your feedback. I can think of lots more things I'd love to include in future editions and absolutely intend on expanding it and updating it as new material is released.
The main intended audience for this guide is actually film/TV geeks who may not be anime fans, but have no doubt heard NGE referred to as one of the best - I really want to encourage them to step out of their comfort zone and reap the rewards, so this guide is really trying to cater for them!
For the love of all that is holy, please don't post spoilers in the comments! I really want this to be a valuable resource for those curious about getting into the series.
submitted by Mitch_NZ to evangelion [link] [comments]


2020.09.11 06:07 Genprey Symbolism of Magia Record: The Self-Reflection of Rika

Previous: The Malevolence of Hanna
For those who have not already read it, I have already done a section on Ren, whose backstory is linked to Rika's.
Rika is actually a girl I've been deliberating to do back since I first started this series, but I held off on doing so when I originally chose not to cover girls without their Doppel/Uncap, but also partly because I wanted to make sure I took my time with Rika, so that I could make sure I was ready to give her story the respect it deserves.
To sort of spoil what's coming, Rika's theme is that of the concept of normalcy and self-expression as it is applied to young teenagers. In particular, Rika is confirmed to be lesbian and part of her background briefly goes over the implications of being homosexual as an adolescent. Such an experience is something I can be knowledgeable about but not fully understand as someone who has not had a similar circumstance as Rika. For that, I wanted some extra time to make sure that I'm at least somewhat qualified to discuss this subject in a way that is thorough and respectful.
Much like certain other girls, this is less me discussing symbolism and more of me explaining Rika as a character who is going through something very real and relatable. In other words, this is going to be like reading a book on sociology, so I apologize ahead of time for that and will try not to make this super boring.

Pursuing One's Own Individuality

We, as humans, go through various stages of life. From birth through childhood, we pretty much coast along a straight path as we begin to learn and internalize social norms from our parents, teachers, and peers. During this phase, we learn what is acceptable and when it is acceptable, which end up serving as a sort of template for our personality.
Starting around middle school, as we experience physical and psychological changes to an extreme, we then begin developing individuality. This includes style (clothing, likes/dislikes, etc.), a basic idea of who we want to be when we're older, and, of course, who we seek as friends and romantic partners. From an outside perspective (i.e. as someone who has already jumped that hurdle), such a time is an interesting part of one's life, as we see youth branch out past the homogeneous schematics that we developed as young kids. This should be a wonderful part of life, but as a lot of us might know already, kids can be really cruel.
The best way to sum Rika up is that "she is herself". We can take that and apply it to many other girls, of course, but the writers go the extra mile to let us know that Rika is developing her individuality. This, unfortunately, comes with its own set of difficulties, as we see in her personal Memoria:
She's in love with all the most popular fashions, all the latest cosmetics. She loves girly fashion, but she is often treated with prejudice for her appearance. -Fashion at Full Speed!
As mentioned in the last sentence, Rika being herself is met with objection from her peers. To my knowledge, specific reasons as to why her peers didn't accept her are not mentioned, but we can assume that it's based on something as petty as not following a trend. This, of course, is due to the fact that certain teenagers have not fully matured and understood the concept of self-expression and why being different is perfectly normal.
The environments where young people socialize tend to be a vicious cycle of conformity. What starts as individuals seeking like-minded peers degrades into filtering out those who are too different from you and your group. Those who desire a social group, as any person would, then sacrifice their uniqueness in order to fit in, and the cycle continues.
With that being said, there's a bit of irony with Rika, in that she's actually "normal" by design. From her character description:
A Magical Girl who is into the latest fashion and make-up. Rika appears to be a typical girly girl, but she is actually very seriously in love. She has been secretly admiring the same person for years. A genuine person, she gets along with everyone.
...we see that she's described as being the "average girl". To add to this, the Japanese characters that make up her last name, Ayano, mean "design" and "plain", which, when put together, says "plain design".
This is something we see in Rika's design, in that her magical girl attire doesn't stray very far from the typical look of magical girls you see in other popular anime of the genre like "Sailor Moon" and "Cardcaptor Sakura". This is something that is clearly an intentional choice in design, and the statement I believed that is to be had here is that a person is best defined by their actions and personality than their appearance. Rika's appearance does little to draw our attention, but she manages to be a popular and well-liked character based on her interaction with characters like Hinano and especially Ren.
Our teenage years would be a hell of a lot easier if our peers saw each other with that in mind.

The Meaning of Love...

This leads us to another key part of Rika's character: her romantic preference and wish. As mentioned earlier, Rika is attracted to other girls, and while dressing different will land you nasty remarks, being homosexual (particularly a few years back) as a teenager tends to quite difficult. There is prejudice and bullying, which I won't really cover, as that's something I think we all are aware of, but the main thing I do want to go over is support or a lack thereof.
The primary orientation in your typical community is heterosexuality, with the ratio of those who identified as being homosexual to those as heterosexual being about 1-in-10 in Japan. Assuming Rika was raised in a traditional household consisting of a male and female parent, discovering and coming to terms with being attracted to other girls is an experience that is wildly confusing and especially difficult. Most of us probably haven't been raised with much knowledge on how a man can be attracted to another man or a woman to another woman, as human relations is a complex subject and most parents tend to either be uncomfortable or not very mindful about discussing such things with their child.
Likewise, teachers aren't all qualified to discuss the subject (as it's usually left to specialists and therapists) and I definitely wouldn't bank on most kids as a comfortable source of comfort if they ostracize someone for wearing different clothes than they.
Not only this, but falling in love is something that is extra difficult for Rika. Recall that most individuals identify as being heterosexual and add in the fact that a percentage of those who do not are possibly repressing themselves, either due to confusion or social pressure. In Rika's case, the girl she fell in love with turns out to have been interested in boys. So along with finding a girl who fits Rika's preferences, she also has to find someone with a similar orientation as her. This is what serves as the motivation behind Rika's wish.
During Rika's MGS, Rika laments that her love for her crush will forever be unrequited. It's one thing for two individuals of the same orientation to start off being uninterested in each other romantically, only to learn more of each other and fall in love later, without Rika's crush viewing her romantically, the two cannot develop a romantic relationship.
That is without the intervention of a certain "furball" (a name that apparently hurts Kyubey more than Homura's firearms). Wishes are an absolute power...but also not very thorough. Having wished for her crush to fall in love with her, Rika starts off happy...but shortly after, feels empty:
It's okay if I'm only dreaming, or even if it's all an illusion. Put aside any thoughts of guilt or deception. Just for now, I want to take in this sweet smell for a little longer, and let it cloud my senses. -Love Smells Like This
As described in this Memoria, Rika is aware that the love she's experiencing with her crush is artificial, being the result of her wish. There is a lot of emphasis put on the sense of smell here, and that's because the scent of something only gives a vague, sometimes false, idea of what something actually is. Some things, for example, might smell sweet, but actually be bitter or poisonous.
As depicted in the illustration of this Memoria, holding hands and walking with your partner is something a lot of us know that lovers do, however, such a thing is only surface-level if there is no feeling or emotion to it. I can hold hands with a female friend, but because we don't view each other romantically, this is likely an empty act performed as a way to get a couples discount at IHOP.
Although Rika genuinely loves her crush and Rika's crush loves her back (as per her wish), Rika steadily finds it difficult to maintain the relationship as it's missing a core part of love.

Being in Love and Loving Someone

Love is...a complicated thing, and I feel like I should clear up that I'm no Dr. Love, rather, a twenty-something-year-old dude who hasn't dated since highschool. With that in mind, there are 2 aspects of love that are rather difficult to distinguish. That is: being in love and loving somebody.
Being in love specifically refers to shallow affection, which isn't necessarily negative. Things like "puppy dog crushes" and "young love" could be considered as individual(s) "being in love", in that they may not fully understand their partner or object of affection. As a 10-year-old, I was "in love" with my teacher until I learned the implication behind the title "Mrs." the hard way. Further, young people will naturally seek out love among their peers, but such a relationship may not last if they discover that they really aren't meant for each other in that way.
This is the area Rika stands. Between feeling guilty about her wish, she begins to come to terms with the fact that, despite loving her crush, the girl she likes doesn't organically romantically love her in return. "To love someone" is to mutually understand and accept their characteristics and is paired with the desire to make them happy as they would equally want to make you. Put simply, true love is a two-sided deal that is only achieved naturally through the understanding of one another.
Rika's wish made the unlikely happen, but without that important step. By the end of her MGS, it is because Rika loved her crush so much that she wanted to make her happy with the boy she had loved.

Mirror Mirror...

It goes without saying that realizing all this shows that Rika is capable of self-reflection, or the understanding of the weight of her thoughts and actions. Although there isn't a lot to Rika's design, her weapon, a compact mirror, ends up saying a lot about her character.
Mirrors symbolize one's true self and the truth of the world it reflects. Such a truth is not always something we want to accept, and in Rika's case, she had to come to terms with the fact that the love she had for her crush was one-sided. There is, however, positive connotations to mirrors, and something that's worth noting is the fact that the one Rika has, in particular, is a compact mirror, which implies something more personal, as it more narrowly reflects the user who is looking in it. As such, Rika's weapon also symbolizes her keen ability to reflect on herself.
If we were to look at the design on the mirror's surface, we can recognize the shape as a hexagram. In Indian culture, a hexagram is the core part of the Anahata, which represents complex emotions involved with unconditional love, rejection and compassion.
The Anahata is depicted as a lotus flower, or "Renge" in Japanese. "Ren" serves as a play on "Renge", and this is something that is brought up during the "Diary With You" event when Rika is deciding on what gift she wants to give Ren. In this same scene, Rika decides on getting May Bell flowers, which are named "Suzuran" in Japanese. "Suzuran" is phonetically similar to "Ren" and, as stated by Konomi, symbolize pure and genuine emotions in the official language of flowers.
This brings us to one last part of this section:

Rika and Ren (Christmas)

Something else to know about mirrors is their nature of reflecting light, which is very clear in Rika's final ascension art. When she met Ren, Ren was in a very dark place in her life, having made a second attempt at suicide. Showing unconditional concern, it was Rika who would serve as a guiding light for Ren to follow through her darkness.
Rika and Ren as Christmas characters is something that was likely carefully planned. Christmas, taking place during Winter, is somewhat conflicting. On one hand, it is a time where many people are happy and spend time with each other, but on the other, it is also a season that is frigid, where the sky is obscured by clouds and plant-life is killed by snow...unless you live in places like Florida. We don't get Winter down here.
Bringing our attention to the pair's personal Memoria:
Even if it's small, this is definite proof that our hearts communicate.
The light of hope that warms cold hearts. No matter how cold the night gets, I can get over it As long as this warmth is in my chest. -The Lights on Our Chests
...we see that light is brought up as a source of warmth. In my analysis on Ren, I compared her to that of an angel, while Rika, as mentioned above, reflects light with her mirror.
The illustration for this Memoria depicts a conflicting scene, candles with snowmen and winter-themed imagery, but also a small flame to warm everything below it. Much like what the Memoria effect (debuff removal) would imply, this scene represents hopefulness and comfort, even among rough conditions.
Their 2nd Magia is named "Aurora Stream", referencing the phenomenon that occurs when our atmosphere mixes with particles from the universe. Such an event represents the beauty that occurs when 2 individuals are able to meet and coexist with each other.
In Rika-Ren's character description, there's a mention of them enjoying snowglobes. Being mementos of Christmas, snowglobes are everlasting and represent eternal joy, even after Christmas has long passed.
Coming next is Umika, and from there, I will move up through the Another Daze girls, although I'm not yet certain the exact order after Umika will be.
submitted by Genprey to magiarecord [link] [comments]


2020.09.11 00:37 martoboyo An early retrospective of Monster Hunter World/Iceborne, to discuss its merits and flaws for the next game

So, with World nearing the end of its development cycle, it’s time to do a retrospective. For someone who has played the series since Freedom Unite with at least 500 hours per game, World made a lot of fundamental changes to mechanics and systems that had remained static for 5 generations. With decent sized nostalgia glasses (MH3U is best game, fight me) and me having played World long enough that the ‘ooh new!’-factor has worn off, let’s take a look at what I would (not) like to see next game.
Before I start, some things to note. I haven’t fought the (Ancient) Leshen or Alatreon, nor many of the Arch-Tempered Monsters (with the exception of Kirin), so I can’t comment on them much. I will say 3 things on them, though these things may apply to other things as well.
  1. I play 99% solo, and I’m not ‘naked speedrunner’-great, although I can kill every monster reasonably fast. As such, I despise quests that force you in MP.
  2. I don’t like being railroaded into a certain playstyle.
  3. Putting in a hard succeed-or-fail-damage-barrier is unnecessary in this game, and a very artificial way to make a fight more difficult. Monster Hunter already has mechanics that encourage and reward aggression and a focus on damage with monster staggers, temporary buffs from weapons and items and the new Healing Augment. Monsters like Zinogre and Gold Rathian also have buffed states that can be stopped by damage, rewarding aggression and skill. Don’t forget the fact that simply spending less time on a hunt is a reward on its own as well.
Having said that, let’s actually look at the game now. I have 4 categories: “Good” (requires no changes, even if it can be improved), “Good but flawed” (good, decent or functional as it is, but can use some changes), “Bad with potential” (mediocre or unnecessary, but can be changed to be better), and “Bad” (please don’t put this in the next game). For readability, I tried to Bold the main points.

Good:

· The additions to each weapons’ moveset are amazing. Personally, I favor smaller quality of life changes that amplify a weapon’s identity, like the Lance’s Power Guard, the Greatsword’s s True Charged Slash or the Gunlance’s Wyrmstake Blast, without changing its playstyle. The Hammer’s Big Bang, for example, felt unnecessary. However, overall, every weapon has been improved, in a much more natural way than Generation’s Styles and Combat Arts did.
· Rolling backwards is a godsend. No more comment needed.
On a more serious note, the increased mobility in this game improves the flow of the hunt. My main weapons (GS, Lance, GL, Hammer, SwA, HBG) have felt fewer improvements in this regard, but I have seen what they have done for all weapons. The SwitchAxe’s ability to move around more freely and switch around between Axe and Sword mode allows an experienced hunter the ability to switch when appropriate even in the middle of a combo. I have small fear related to this topic, but I will discuss this later.
· Alexander is my bro. Yes, Alexander is my feline companion. The companions in this game are great. Customizable enough, without being overly complicated and confusing like it was in MHGU. Their contribution to the fight is noticeable (especially if you give your companion a status weapon), they are active for the vast majority of the fight (no hiding in the ground for 50% of the hunt like Cha Cha, damn him) and they will use their skills frequently. Being able to give them the order to use their skills is also very useful, especially the Healing Skills (if you ask me). I barely use any Potions anymore because of Alexander the Bro.
· No more flexing after drinking, thank goodness. Basically, the ability to move around while consuming items allows you to actually stay in/near the fight when healing or refreshing buffs. This was probably a necessary change with the removal of separated areas (old school hunters, imagine drinking a potion the old way in World. Yes, that feeling of panic is natural), but it’s still a great change.
· No more Pickaxes or Bugnets! A QOL change I support wholeheartedly. Sure, without Talismans from mining spots and the Base Camp allowing you access to your items at all times, it would not have been as much a problem as in the old games. But still, few things were more frustrating than running out of pickaxes in the middle of a gathering quest.
· Extra Inventory Space for materials? Yes please! Mostly because it saves some effort managing your inventory. Even in the old games I would rarely need more space for materials, but it did limit what I could bring to some extent.
· Tracks are an excellent and natural replacement for Paint Balls. For anyone who doesn’t know, in the old games, you needed to throw a paintball at a monster to track it on your map. Once you knew monsters a bit, you didn’t actually need paintballs anymore since you knew where the monsters would hang out or move to. Still, it’s great that I can always tell where a monster is now.
The way the system works is also quite clever, because it still uses the same learning curve as paintballs without the hassle and a major reward at the end. You don’t immediately get all the information, nor do you automatically follow a monster the first few hunts, so you still have to learn a monster’s habitat and how it moves around. Gathering tracks is, however, still low effort to do, and once you have fought a monster a few times you will have gathered all the tracks. In the old games, this knowledge was in your head, but now the game just shows it to you. At this point, the tracks (and research level) are usually little more than a quality of life thing (you’ve fought the monster enough times to just know most of it), but boy, if you ever lost track of a flying monster in the old games, you know how nice it is to just know a monster’s location. Having all the Wiki-information in regards to elemental weaknesses, hitzones and material rewards doesn’t hurt either.
· Augments are an excellent way to personalize your weapons and make a decent late-reward. You can easily do without Augments, but they still feel pretty nice to have. It would be nice if the Healing Augment wasn’t so comfortable to use, because the others feel pretty mediocre compared to it. I have used all Augments on at least one weapon though, so it’s not that bad. I do have major criticism on the way you farm Augments, but I’ll address that later.
· I love cooking cats. I’m not even a cat person, but the food cutscenes are absolutely amazing. All hail Grandma Felyne and Arnold Catzenegger.
· Safi’s weapon customization system is very interesting. Just the Set-bonus Skills make Safi weapons so very useful for someone like me who likes to make a lot of different sets without following any meta. It helps that I found Safi to be entertaining to fight. I could even grudgingly tolerate the MP-aspect of it, though I hope they make it easier for SP to farm them as well. Also, maybe make the Set-bonus skills a separate part to unlock with maybe the Mantle of that monster? I spent way too much time unlocking Zorah’s Set Bonus on my GL.
· Turf Wars are awesome. They really do bring the world alive, and reinforce the idea that this world is a hypercharged ecosystem where aggression is rewarded. A few more unique Turf Wars would be cool though. Seeing Glavenus suddenly act like Anjanath when he bodyslams a Diablos is a bit strange. Also, more stuff like Diablos breaking each other’s horns. Maybe even different outcomes, where one monster just wins, perhaps based on the relative size of a monster (a gold sized crown beats a regular sized monster)?
· The maps are gorgeous and varied, while still projecting a coherent picture. The Wildspire Waste is my favorite in that regard. Other maps are still beautiful and never with jarring transitions. The maps are a tad too big for my taste, but you can just warp around the camps, so that’s fine. The environmental traps are pretty niche, and I tend to forget they exist in the middle of combat, but they are still very satisfying to use. Maps are a solid 9, better than any previous map in Monster Hunter.
· Namielle is my favorite Elder Dragon. I tend to prefer the midgame monsters to the Elder Dragons, since Elder Dragon are often a bit over the top. However, Namielle is perfect for me. It’s not mind-blowingly difficult, but still poses a serious threat without relying in gimmicks or insane AOE (more on that later). More importantly, its design is very unique, especially soundwise. Visually, it reminds me of Abyssal Lagiacrus, but easily makes the transition to the land while still remaining an aquatic monster.
· Eating midquest is awesome. There’s nothing negative I can say about this. I have mixed feelings on the changes to the basecamp in general, but I have restarted too many quests because I forgot to eat to not 100% love the ability to eat midquest. Praise the Handler (in this one, tiny aspect).
· I wish to give special attention to a few monsters. Anjanath looks awesome and has just enough twists on the generic T-rex design. Fulgur Anjantah is even better in that regard. B-52 Bazelgeuse looks absolutely amazing and it’s a really unique Flying Wyvern, even if the fight is only average. Odogaron is a very cool fight, with an aggressive and mobile style that still feels manageable.
· Since I’m a loner gamer with little to no social life, I like the overly attached Pub Lass. It feels good to be appreciated, even by a bunch of ones and zeros, sue me. I do miss bitchy Arena Lass though. The new Arena Lass is very nice, but a bit of smack talk was hilarious.

Good but flawed

Ah yes, now come the walls of text. Apologies. It’s hard to say a lot about something that’s just good. I already felt I overused words like ‘awesome’, because they don’t mean much even if they accurately convey a feeling. On the other hand, it's easy to just say "this is bad" without arguing why, or how it can be better in my opinion.
· Confession time: I hate every facet of Tempered Monsters. Apparently, they’re “infused with bioenergy from the Elder Dragons from living in the New World for so long” (from the MH Wiki). The whole bio-energy thing in World is basically magic, and to me, it feels far too fantasy for a Monster Hunter game (which practices pseudo-biological ‘realism’). In practice, however, Tempered is just the absolute laziest way to increase difficulty: crank up the numbers. More damage and health, and presto, a more difficult fight! At least Hyper Monsters had some different timings in their attacks, though even less justification from a lore perspective.
In case you think I just hate the concept, I kinda do. But, I did love Frenzied Monsters (Apex not as much). Why? Two reasons. First, as little as lore and story matter to me in a MH game, I was always interested in the biology of the world. How does the ecosystem work? Why can these monsters get so big? Et cetera (My usual answer is “low gravity, mineral rich soils to strengthen bones and scales, and the existence of an extremely efficient form of photosynthesis to hypercharge the food chain”). The Frenzy virus is comparable to rabies in its effect, and to infectious spores in its spread and lifecycle. Rabies (and Frenzy) spread through contact, which explains the aggression that comes with both. It can, however, also create a symbiotic relationship with its host and fuel its aggression and power without killing the host (Apex, which sucks gameplaywise despite its cool concept). With the addition of a few nice cinematics to sell its effect in action outside of hunts, Frenzy is almost realistic (I mean, totally not, but still).
The gameplay side of Frenzy is equally interesting. Unlike Tempered Monsters, where it’s just increased damage, or the Hyper status, which is just more damage and slightly changed timings on certain attacks, the Frenzy virus does so much more. Monsters do more damage, are far more aggressive and reckless in their attacks and will change the timings on their attacks seemingly at random. But that’s not it: the Hunter can get infected as well. If you overcome it by doing enough damage in a time window, you get a damage boost yourself! If you don’t, you become more vulnerable to attacks. But wait, there’s more! You can knock the virus out of a monster temporarily with special items, leaving you a large opening to attack and weakening them back to their regular state. Frenzy makes once easy monsters a new challenge by randomly messing up their timings and reducing your windows with their increased aggression, but you are rewarded for fighting through it with a damage bonus and a large opening to attack. Even ignoring the lore, Frenzy is a far more interesting mechanic in the way it changes the fight. It punishes and rewards. That’s not even mentioning the presentation. The purple hue is pretty cool and noticeable; I didn’t know until today that Tempered Monsters have a metallic hue, so I guess that a draw. However, just look up a few Frenzied Monsters, and listen to their roars. That is how you sell a monster gone berserk.
However, I do have another confession. A few days ago, I found myself thinking “Hm, do I want to just do a quick run for this material or do I want to challenge myself with a Tempered version.” Yes, that thought is the only reason I don’t condemn Tempered monsters to the depth of hell. It’s still lazy design (which isn’t the same as bad design though), and far inferior to Frenzy in gameplay, presentation and background (just watch the frenzied Zinogre cinematic for an impression), but I guess it does its job.
Still, bring back Gore Magala please.
· Monsters are far more mobile in World than older games. It adds challenge and makes them more natural in most cases, less clunky, less like a videogame boss. Rathalos in older games often looked a bit silly with it aerial movement, but it’s much better now.
However, I have noticed a problem in World. Monsters struggle to keep up with the hunters. The greatest victim of this is Nargacuga: a jumping menace in older games, now ridiculously easy since most weapons are just as mobile or have too many tools to keep up. On the other side, they went overboard with Barioth, who just jumps around the area like a maniac compared to older games and feels frustrating. It might just be me, but it feels like the devs are struggling to keep certain monsters challenging without relying on homing attacks or movement that follows you quickly no matter where you are. I’m also certain this is where the fixation with AOE that this game has comes from. Kushala Daora, Lunastra, Deviljho, Velkhana’s walls, all have annoying ways to restrict your movement besides regular hitboxes from their attacks (that noticeably can’t be blocked, which annoys me as a Lance and GL player).
I’m a bit worried where this might lead. Again, I might just be paranoid, or bad at dealing with these AOEs because I play slower weapons. But I’ve played enough games in my no-life to trust my instinct on this.
· The new skill system is fine. The point system is, admittedly, easier to understand and probably easier to minmax. I also really like the Armor Set Bonus Skills that you get from equipping 2-5 pieces. It creates an interesting dilemma: do I want this Armor Set Bonus Skill and be forced to use a suboptimal piece of armor, or do I want to use a bunch of (theoretically) less powerful skills that I can minmax to hell and back? Of course, this falls somewhat flat in practice. Almost none of the skills hit that sweetspot of being good enough to actually want while requiring a reasonable sacrifice. Most skills aren’t good enough to actually warrant any kind of sacrifice or don’t really need a sacrifice because pieces you need are good on their own. But hey, it might be balanced better in the future.
In my opinion, it has sacrificed something that made Monster Hunter unique though. The old system, for those who don’t know, required 10 points in a skill to activate the skill, with some skills improving at 15 or 20 points. There were even negative skills that activated on -10! Each armor piece gave a few points in a skill, and the same went for decorations and talismans. The problem (and interesting part) of the old system was that 9 points in a skill gave nothing. You needed 10, or you wouldn’t be getting anything from that skill. This system was, obviously, a bit frustrating and difficult to understand for new players, since they tend to just pick and mix whatever armor pieces they can afford, resulting in a lot of skills with 7 points but no active skills. However, I just need to say Athena to old players and they might get a flutter of nostalgia. Puzzling out an armor set that gave you just the right amount of points was glorious. The old system felt much more rewarding to figure out and master than the new. This is probably nostalgia for a clunky old system that repelled new players, but I stand by my opinion on this.
· The Hubs are pretty, but jeez are they big. Seliana is much better than Astera, but still pretty big to run around. Oh, does anyone remember the Research Base? Nah, didn’t think so. Bit of a shame. The Online Gathering Hubs are very nice though.
· The story is fine, and serves decently to get you through the game. The whole bio-energy stuff is annoying to me, because it reeks too much of magic. Monster Hunter has always been about pseudo-biology to me. Firebreathing is implausible and very dangerous, but not impossible. Same goes for a symbiotic slime that explodes when deposited. Same goes for electrical organs. Hell, even icebreath could theoretically exist. Elder Dragons have always breached that pseudo-biology thing, but they were mysterious enough that it never bothered me. Making bioenergy an entire plot point was a bad idea in my opinion, because it ruined that mystery that kept is safe from scrutiny in the game’s theme of pseudo-biology. Like guns in Harry Potter: you know they exist, but we don’t acknowledge that because it ruins the themes of the story.
Also, yes, the Handler in annoying, I’ll get to her, but overall the story is inoffensive and guides you through the game. Hell, World is the first MH game that put some actual effort in the story (ignoring the Frenzy virus, which was a masterful blending of gameplay and story that I’m fairly certain happened by accident). So sure, not bad. Definitely not great, since it fails to actually establish anything interesting that remains relevant throughout the game, or develop characters in a meaningful way, but not bad.
· Ah yes, the Guiding Lands. I love the concept of the Guiding Lands. A large area where you can just run around and kill any monster that emerges for rewards. If you don’t need anything specific, the Guiding Lands are a cool way to kill a few hours.
Unfortunately, the Guiding Lands have a problem that I call “being triple conditional”. Ignoring the whole gathering sidequest of it, which is silly, what’s the point of the Guiding Lands’ rewards? The materials for Augments. As I said above, Augments are great. However, all Augments require specific monster parts from the Guiding Lands. This sucks, because this is where the “triple conditional” part comes in. Firstly, you need to have the right Area Levels. You can at most keep 3 areas at Level 7, so you never have potential access to all monsters, nor can you just kill monsters at your leisure because it can upset the level balance. Secondly, only 3 monsters are present at a time, 2 if there’s an Elder Dragon, so if you’re an unlucky fellow like me and you don’t have a lure most of the time, good luck getting the monster you want to show. Thirdly, since Augments are pretty unbalanced, a lot of monsters are just not worth fighting if you care about the rewards. For example, Rathalos materials are only needed for the last Rarity 10 Weapon Defense Upgrade.
Now, since the Elder Melder exists, it’s not that much of an issue. I would still prefer a system that just allows you to pay for the Augments with any material of that Spiritvein tier, with a discount for using the ‘right’ monster materials. No extra work to trade my useless stuff for slightly more useful stuff. Just spend a few hours in the Guiding Lands and Augment away.
· I mentioned this briefly before, but I’m a bit torn on the Base Camp giving you access to your weapons, armor and items. Don’t get me wrong: it’s a magnificent QOL change. However, it removed an aspect of multi-monster-quests that forced you into a somewhat interesting decision: what weapon do I bring? Do I want a weapon type/element that is suboptimal but decent for all monsters, or bring a set focused on the most difficult one? As said, it’s a small complaint (especially since multi-monster quests are dead anyway, more on that later), but it’s another example of the game sacrificing old jank/limitations when they added interesting aspects to the game. Flexing after a Potion is silly. Not being able to bring your entire wardrobe is understandable.

Bad but with potential

· So, Investigations. I’ll be frank: they’re unnecessary and flavorless. At first, I liked them, but over time, I noticed their glaring flaws. Let’s take a look at how MH quests used to work. In the old games, there were no Investigations or Assigned Quests, just Optional Quests, a few of whom were mandatory to unlock the Urgent Quest that in turn unlocked the next tier of quests. To farm stuff, you had do the optional quests over and over again. Now, in more recent games, some quests were available semi-randomly. These quests were (almost) always multi-monster quests, and would rotate after you did a quest.
Investigations did away with the entire need for regular Optional Quests, since they are 99% superior. If I have an Investigation available of a Monster I need to kill, I’ll take it over the Optional Quest. Maybe if the Investigation has a 20 minute time limit I won’t take it, but I can comfortably kill almost everything within those 20 minutes, without dying. So ya.
Even worse, Investigations have killed the need for multi-monster quests that I mentioned earlier. Let’s say you need to farm for Rathian Mantles. In World/Iceborne, you go for the Rathian Investigation that has the most Gold rewards and just hunt her a few times until you get it. Usually, you get it before the Investigation has been used up. In the old games, you didn’t have that luxury. There was often a choice: what quest do I pick? You could do the single Rathian quest: besides carves, capture and parts rewards (which rarely added up to more than a 5% chance), all quests had a table of rewards with odds of getting it. A simple quest like this usually gives a 1% chance to get it from quest rewards. Or, you could do the triple Rathian quest for more carves/capture rewards. The quest still gives about 1% chance to get a Mantle from the quest rewards specifically, but you triple your odds of carving a Mantle without tripling your time spend (health in multi-monster quests is lowered, though still more in total than a single monster). Or, you could do a triple-monster quest that makes you fight a Rathian, Diablos and Seregios in the Desert. Sure, you only kill 1 Rathian and 2 unrelated monsters that might give you trouble, but this quest gives an 8% chance to get one in the rewards! Now this is an interesting choice. The single quest is the most basic, and always available. The triple Rathian quest of often absent from the list, but potentially triples your odds of getting it. The triple monster quest however, gives you a much higher chance as well. Which quest you will most efficiently be able to farm, will depend on your skill matchup versus other monsters as well. Do I wait for the triple monster quests to pop up again and do another quest, or just do the regular Rathian quest again?
Now, would you ever do this with an Investigation? Do a triple Monster quest when you have a single monster quest available? No, of course not. Investigations offer potentially a lot of freedom, but again, it’s a new, flashy system with the depth of a dried up rain puddle that offers no interesting choices, that replaces an old, admittedly janky system that offered players a choice on how to deal with it. I can’t even remember the last time I did a multi-monster quest in World to farm. Because there is no point in challenging myself.
Investigations aren’t flawed in concept, but very much in execution. I would advocate removing them, but if you want to keep them, fine, let’s theory craft. Investigations would be interesting if they did away with the Bronze, Silver and Gold (and Purple) rewards. Instead, replace them with a simple triple row system. You get a row of rewards for each monster in the quest. Kill them all, and you get three rows, each one dedicated to a monster, but this still triples your odds of the miscellaneous rewards (such as decorations). Additionally, make each quest give a bonus chance to drop a material of the tier that is equal to the amount of monsters (basically a different drop table with higher odds for rarer rewards). One monster gives a bonus to the base tier (Scales, Shells, the least rare stuff). Two monsters gives a bonus to middle tier stuff (Tails, Spikes, Wings, et cetera). Three monsters gives a bonus to the rarest drops (Plates, Gems and Mantles). This means players can actually snipe for these rewards. You can do the same for the Tempered Monsters: give an amount of rewards for the number of monsters killed, with the tier of rewards for the tier of the Tempered Monsters you killed.
I could come up with more ways to balance Investigations for whatever purpose you might see in them, but I have made my point. Investigations are an unnecessary addition to World that replaces a system that was fine with a gimmicky system whose randomness is largely meaningless once you have farmed a few of them. You know, the most annoying way to develop a game, which entails replacing an old system that was interesting with something that is way easier to understand for new players and usually less interesting.
· More Monsters. Don’t misunderstand me, I totally get why World especially had such a small rosters. Importing all the stuff into a new engine is time- (and thus money-)consuming work. And frankly, the game has 71 Large monsters, which is comparable to late-3ds games, and only significantly beaten by MHGU. Yet, I have 2 complaints.
The first is something most people will agree with. Even Iceborne has little variety in Monster Types. There are no Leviathans, large Neopterons, Snake Wyverns (Najarala), Carapaceons, Temnocerans (Nerscylla) or Amphibians. There are Fanged Wyverns (4 legged), Brute Wyverns/Bird Wyverns (2 legged), 2 types of Flying Wyverns (Tigrex skeleton and Rathian skeleton), 3 Piscine Wyverns nobody likes and the Elder Dragon Skeleton (that almost everyone uses). Only Kirin, Leshen and Rajang fully break the mold. Thus, there’s a lot of monsters that are similar in their fights (regular and Pink Rathian, regular and Azure Rathalos, regular and Black Diablos, Great Jagras and Great Girros, Kulu-Ya-Ku and Tzitzi-Ya-Ku, Teostra/Kushala Daora).
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying Diablos and Rathalos are the same fight for sharing a skeleton. I also don’t mind monsters sharing similarities. I love subspecies, since they put a new twist on a familiar monster, so your old skills aren’t wasted but you still have to adjust. But that doesn’t mask that it’s still the same monster underneath. To add to that, of the new monsters in World and Iceborne, only Legiana, Bazelgeuse, Odogaron, Great Jagras and Tobi-Kadachi offer something new compared to old games before you get to the Elder Dragons. The new Elder Dragons are pretty cool though. And again, I get why. Reusing skeletons saves development time. But remember, that excuse works for 1 game only. I do have faith the MH-devs will deliver next game, though, so I’m not worried, but it’s a valid criticism nonetheless.
The second is a more personal gripe. I’m not a fan of Elder Dragons in generals, as I said regarding Namielle. I prefer the mid-game monsters in general, since I prefer pseudo-biological realism over high fantasy magical creatures. Since World partially embraced the live-service, they added new monsters over time. To make these monsters exciting, they had to be, well, exciting. So, Iceborne has a whopping 18 Elder Dragons in a roster of 73 (compared to 6 out of 51 in MH3U, 13 out of 93 in MHGU and 13 out of 75 in MH4U). Please, for the next game, focus on the midgame again, with only a few Elder Dragons to keep them, you know, special.
· To really make the game world feel alive, you need more small monsters, both in the number of monsters on the map, and the amount of different species. Basically, I’m hoping for actual herds of herbivores walking around. Maybe even form a defensive perimeter when a large monster shows up? Smaller monster dashing through the forests. Gastodon actually doing something besides bothering hunters. As it is, every small monster reminds me of the fact that this is a game, and not a living world.
· I really don’t care for the sidequests of capturing bugs, taking screencaps or dealing with Gajalaka’s. Again, a personal gripe, I know. It just doesn’t add much for me. I play this game to slowly kill monsters 10 times my size, not take selfies with uncooperative hummingbirds. They’re harmless enough, I suppose, but the Canteen is enough Japanese silliness for me.
· So, you may have been waiting for it, or you may have simply pushed her existence from your mind like an embarrassing moment in High School. But yes, I do need to acknowledge her existence, defend her briefly with little enthusiasm and then send her back to the Canteen so she can keep stuffing her face while I take my quests from the quest board. The Handler.
I’m by nature quite laid back. As such, the Handler never bothered me that much. Sure, I rolled my eyes every time she almost got herself killed because of anime naivety. Sure, her obsession with food is one of those anime tropes that turns me off the entire genre. Sure, I frowned every time she called me ‘Pard’ (who even says that). Sure, she reminds me of Cha-Cha and Kayamba in a bad way with her ‘We did it’ stuff, taking credit for shit I did. And yes, of course I prefer the Serious Handler, I’m a professional.
But you know, the Handler harmless enough. She gives me little (annoying) sister vibes and some of her outfits are… you know, not little-sisterly. I also enjoy her animations when she sends a lure in the Guiding Lands. I still very, very much encourage the game to do something different next game. Maybe allow us to choose a Handler at the start, choosing between 3 types (overly attached Pub Lass, Serious Handler and The Handler are a nice balance between… types)? Or show us far more of the Handler’s backstory and, more importantly, her work. Show us she isn’t just stuffing her face on my payroll. Or for goodness’ sake, the Serious Handler already has most of the required animations, why can’t we change back to her in this game? Just say the Guild recalls the regular Handler for some admin work, if you don’t want to feel guilty for kicking her out.
Hell, maybe add a romantic subplot. No, I’m not trying to convince the developers to allow me to date the overly attached Pub Lass. Now shut up, or it might not work.
· Time for another large topic, one that might strike some unlucky people right in the heart: the Decoration and Talisman system. For context, in the old games those were reversed. You bought Decorations with monster parts and money, and you farmed for randomly skilled Talismans. Or rather, you mined Talismans from Mining Spots. A good Talisman (or Charm, back then) could give you slots, up to 7 skill points in the best skills and up to 12 points other skills. One of the best Charms you could get in MH4U, for example, was Handicraft +5 with 3 slots, for a potential +9 Handicraft if you fill those slots. To put that into perspective of the old system: most armor pieces gave +2 to +4 at most, with those pieces that give more skill points having less slots. Charms were, on average, less powerful than those in World, but the best charms could open up entire new skill combinations.
So, from its position in my retrospective, you can probably guess my overall opinion, but let’s take a look at the positives. Old players will remember MH3U’s Charm Tables. Your character was giving a predetermined list of charms (20.000 possible charms in most tables in MH3U) at its creation. There were 17 tables, 12 of which were fine to very good, with all having a decent selection of late-game charms that combined good skills with other good skills or lots of slots. The remaining 5, however, were the Cursed Tables. These were absolutely, godawful bad. They had only 200-800 available charms each (compared to 20.000 for each of the 12 good ones) with almost no good late-game ones. Also, one table famously had no 3 slot charms AT ALL, and another prevented Rustshards from dropping (which were necessary for some armor sets. Yes, you could be locked out of entire armor sets if you were unlucky). MH4U fixed this system by simply resetting your charm table every time you loaded the game (and removing/changing the Cursed Tables). However, as you might have figured out, this adds a WHOLE LOT of randomness to the game. Especially since you needed to mine for the best change to get new charms, this system could be very frustrating for those looking to minmax. World changed that system to be more consistent, both through the changes to the Skill system in general, and by swapping the way you gathered Charms/Talismans and Decorations around.
I was lukewarm at best about the skill system. I’m flat out not happy about the new Talisman and Decoration system, though not furious either. Once again, this falls in the ‘let’s change a unique mechanic to something easier and infinitely more generic’-basket that World carries on its back. Yes, the new system is more consistent: unless you are very unlucky, you will be able to farm most decorations you need in a few grinding sessions, and buy whatever Talismans you need.
But I would argue 2 points against the new systems. Firstly… well, it’s boring! I have spent many hours puzzling out armor sets with the Charms I had found. Some sets were only possible because I had found the perfect Charm. I distinctly remember a virtually perfect GL set I had crafted in MH3U because I had found a Charm that gave +12 Artillery (out of 15) and +6 Guard (out of 10/15). Every Charm you found had the potential to allow completely new skill combinations. In World, however, Decorations are more like a bingo card: I already know what Deco’s I need, I’m just waiting for them to drop. And once I have all the Decorations I need, I’m never going to look at them ever again. It felt frustrating to miss out on Decorations, rather than feeling like I just need to be a bit more creative with the old Charm system. Yes, Charms were random, and I’m always hesitant about randomness, but in this case, it’s only about 10-20% of your possible points that are random. Your Charms were like the cherry on your armor pie. The Decorations in World feel like bricks missing from a wall that I have planned out from the start.
Secondly, the way you gather Decorations is slow. This is probably partly my bias against Tempered Monsters and Investigations, and I might even be contradicting myself here, but I don’t like being forced to do Tempered Monster Investigations to reliably farm Decorations. In the old games, I would often just take an afternoon ‘off’ from hunting and do a few Charm runs, where I would grab a Gathering Armor Set and just run around in the volcanic area, mining everything I see. You could easily get 10-20 Charms per run. Even the best Investigations in World don’t give more than 10 if you are lucky. And since you need a lot more Decorations than Charms, you’re stuck hunting Tempered Elder Dragons for a while if you really want that Expert +2 Deco, matey. And no, I do not know why doing ‘Charm runs’ is fine with me when the side quests in World bother me. Probably nostalgia?
In short, the old system was random, but rewarding, because a single good charm could overhaul your entire Armor Set collection. The new system is equally random but feels different, more focused on the frustration you feel when you don’t have all the Decos wou want, compared to the old system that made every Charm a possible game changer. I’m probably being biased and nostalgic here, but I do think the old garage-sale system had a personality that the new shopping-list system sorely lacks.

Bad (with a side of salt)

· Arch-Tempered. Seriously? Tempered got a bare pass from me, mostly because I was feeling nice. But Arch-Tempered is the definition of taking a monster, maxing its damage to make every move a near instant-kill, adding a move to make it ‘special’ and calling it a day.
Just make it a deviant, or a subspecies with increased speed and aggression, but STOP PUMPING UP DAMAGE NUMBERS TO FEIGN DIFFICULTY. And no, one new move is not enough to make it different.
· If you need an embodiment of everything wrong with Monster Hunter Iceborne’s design philosophy, look no further than Lunastra. Large AOE attacks, instant kills for all but the most safe builds, and, perhaps the sin of all sins, allowing her to move before you do after she roars.
Jokes and salt aside, Lunastra is a decent fight (if I’m being generous), but she feels overtuned. I mean, go feminism for her being stronger than Teostra, that’s fine, but it’s a tad too far. Anyone who has played a MOBA will know what I mean: it’s when a hero/champion/god comes out and has too much of everything, without feeling fundamentally flawed. Tweak her damage, range, speed and maybe make her charging state more vulnerable by adding a really obvious tell that she’s gonna do it or just making it easier to interrupt.
· Let us go offline without pulling out my ethernet cable and bring back pausing the game. Even without PS Plus you have to host a room. Why.
· In the same vein, all quests should be reasonably completable for solo players as well. Yes, Safi, Behemoth and Kulva can be completed solo, but again, not everyone has the time to get good enough for that. MP only doesn’t bother me that much, but I’m not going to pay for a month of PS Plus if I just want to do a few Safi runs this one weekend.
· Looooooooooooooaaaaaaaaaaaadddddddddddddiiiiiiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnnnnnngggggggggg tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiimmmmmmmmmmmmmeeeeeeeeesssssssssss. Man, the game looks beautiful but I sometimes forget I’m playing the game because I get distracted during loading times. Let’s hope the next generation fixes it a bit.
submitted by martoboyo to MonsterHunterWorld [link] [comments]


2020.09.10 03:32 AutoModerator General Questions Thread, September 10, 2020

A thread for new collectors to ask basic questions of the community.
Frequently Asked Questions below!
A longer version of the subreddit rules is here.
For questions specifically concerning bootlegs or vendor legitimacy, please ask in the Bootleg Megathread.
NSFW & Spoiler Guidelines
  • For Self Posts: include a bolded NSFW note next to links in that post.
  • For Links to sites/images: If the figure is NSFW, or the website has any NSFW content (including ads) be sure to tag your post NSFW and use the appropriate link flair.
Bootlegs
Any collection posts containing bootlegs, comments advocating buying bootlegs, or links to sites selling bootlegs, recasts, or unlicensed merchandise will be removed.
People often ask about the legitimacy and/or safety of a number of websites which sell large resin statues. The more commonly-asked of those deal primarily in resins from studios which do not have a license from the Japanese IP holders to produce merchandise. Therefore links to those sites are not permitted here. Another sign is if MyFigureCollection doesn't list the either the statue, its manufacturer, or the shop it's being sold on.
MyFigureCollection
My Figure Collection is like MyAnimeList... but for figures! Their database includes thousands of items which been produced during the last couple of decades, along with reviews of shops and other helpful articles. One can also list their own collection and post gallery photos.
Shops
Retailers:
AmiAmi HobbySearch Mandarake (sells rare figures) Good Smile Company Online Shop (often has exclusives) Good Smile Company US shop Crunchyroll Shop Hobby Link Japan (aka HLJ) Solaris Japan (MFC partner) Big in Japan (also has proxy service) Tokyo Otaku Mode FigureHaven Archonia (EU retailer) Jungle
List of retailers on MFC
/AnimeFigures' List of Retailers
Community Guide to Shopping in Japan
Blogs/News:
Nekomagic (News/Previews) NyaaFigurines (Reviews/Releases) Kahotan's Blog (News/Reviews) Figma Blog (JP)

Buying & Shipping

1. What’s the best place to buy my anime figures from?
That’s going to depend a lot on what works for you, but most people around here buy them from Amiami, Big in Japan, Hobby Search, HobbyLink Japan, or Tokyo Otaku Mode. If none of those work for you for whatever reason, there’s a list of reputable retailers in the sidebar that you can check out at any time. Be extra careful when ordering figures from websites like Amazon or ebay, as there are a lot of bootlegs on those sites. Don’t be afraid to ask in our Bootleg Megathread if you’re unsure.
2. What differences are there between the shipping options I get from most Japanese shops?
Below is a rundown of the main shipping choices you’ll get at most retailers. Keep in mind that if an order is large enough you will be forced to use one of the more expensive options, as SAL shipments have lower size and weight restrictions.
  • Unregistered SAL: Sometimes referred to as uSAL, is usually the cheapest method. It does not come with any tracking or insurance. Usually takes up 2-4 weeks for delivery.
  • Registered SAL: Sometimes referred to as rSAL, is insured for the declared value up to 6,000 yen. It comes with a tracking number and usually takes 2-4 weeks for delivery.
  • EMS: This method of shipping is much faster than either SAL options, usually arriving within a week of shipment. EMS shipments are insured for the declared value up to 2,000,000 yen.
  • Airmail
  • E-packet
  • Surface: Shops don't offer this very often. It's an actual cargo ship and slow as a result.
  • DHL: Becoming more available as an alternative to EMS on AmiAmi and other sites. Can be less expensive than EMS and of comparable speed, but may be more reliant on the specific geographical area being shipped to. Offers their own tracking.
3. I placed two+ orders for figures at different times. Will my items be shipped together, or will I have to pay shipping twice?
Most shops will ask you to pay shipping on a per-order basis, but here are some that will allow combined shipping:
  • Amiami: You can combine orders here, as long as the orders ship in the same month. It doesn’t matter if the item is new or preowned. Any preorders that are set for that month can also be combined with other orders for that month. However, be aware that if the preorder gets delayed, Amiami will remove that item from that month’s shipment and place it on a new order. To combine orders on Amiami, use the “Combine Orders” feature under “My Account”.
  • Hobby Search: Hobby Search will let you combine orders that release in the same month, but you cannot combine in stock items with preorders. If you want to combine multiple preorders, or multiple in stock items, you can do so using the “Order Recombination” feature on your account page.
  • HobbyLink Japan: At HLJ, you have the option to send paid orders to their “Private Warehouse”, where you can store them for up to 2 months. When you’re ready to ship the items, you simply select which items to ship and HLJ will combine them into one shipment for you. To use this, just select the “Private Warehouse” option as shipping when you order.
  • GSC Web Shop: Here you’ll pay a flat 2,000 yen fee per order. It doesn’t matter how many items you put in your order, or how many different months the items release in. They will charge you 2,000 yen and ship all items as they release. The exception to this rule is their Wonder Festival exclusive items. Those can only be placed in the same order as other Wonder Festival items.
If you’re unsure about whether or not a shop we haven’t listed will combine your orders, please refer to their individual FAQ’s.
4. When will I get charged for my preorder?
Most Japanese shops charge you once the item is in stock and ready for shipment. When that happens, they will send you an email asking for payment. Some shops (mostly overseas ones), will allow you to pay for the item up front though, if you’d like. A few with that option are:
  • Big in Japan (Japanese store)
  • Tokyo Otaku Mode
  • Anime Island
  • Crunchyroll
Keep in mind that overseas stores will likely get the figure a few months after Japanese ones, so pay attention to the release date stated on the website you are buying from so as to avoid that confusion.
5. Should I expect to pay customs fees when importing figures?
That depends on where you live. Here’s a quick rundown:
  • Australia: 10% GST is now assessed up front.
  • Canada: Minimum declared value for charges is around CAD$20 for regular shipments, and CAD$60 for gifts (gifting something only seems to lower the declared value by about CAD$40, not deplete it completely). When using Amiami, try their Small Air Packet option. It comes with tracking, gets there in about the same time as EMS, and is better at avoiding customs.
  • Europe: Using EMS raises your chance of getting charged for customs. SAL can still avoid customs in some countries, but generally gets checked in the UK now if the items are above the threshold. Amiami offers a shipping service called “Small Air Packet” that is really good for avoiding customs when you are only shipping one or two figures. Small Air Packet usually takes about the same amount of time as EMS, and still comes with tracking.The minimum declared value for customs charges in the Europe is pretty low- around £15 (£36 for gifts) / €20.
  • Mexico: Minimum declared value for customs fees is USD$300 for shipments by post, and USD$50 for shipments by courier.
  • United States: A shipment has to have a declared value of USD$2,000 before customs starts hitting you with fees, so you most likely won’t have to worry about them at all.
6. The figure I want is an exclusive, how do I go about ordering one outside of Japan?
You have three options for this:
A. Big in Japan is known to stock exclusive figures and ship to other countries. Usually the price is higher because they build in their proxy fees, but it’s easier than worrying about using a forwarder or proxy service. If you live in the US, Crunchyroll, Right Stuf, and Tokyo Otaku Mode also get exclusives sometimes, but out of the states the shipping can get expensive.
B. Forwarding Services: A forwarder is someone who you ship an exclusive item to so that they can forward the package on to you, usually for a flat fee + shipping. When using a forwarder you still make the purchase yourself, and enter their address into the shipping field. When the box arrives at the forwarder they will then stick your address onto the package and send it on its way.
Some popular forwarders are:
Be sure to read each sites instructions on forwarding carefully!
C. Proxy Services: With a proxy, you tell them what the item you’re looking for is and they will purchase it in your stead. This is handy for when a company doesn’t accept foreign credit cards, or you’re having trouble navigating a Japanese website.
Some popular proxies are:
Again, be sure you thoroughly read through each sites proxy instructions.
7. I see a bunch of really cheap figures that ship from China on ebay. Are those okay to buy?
Generally, no. They’re most likely bootlegs. If you want a second opinion on that, feel free to ask in the Bootleg Megathread that’s always stickied at the top of the sub.
8. What’s a bootleg, and how can I avoid buying them?
A bootleg is a counterfeit figure often made using rejected molds of the official product. They are usually priced significantly lower than the genuine article, and in order to make their profit, bootleggers use lower quality materials and have less attention to detail- resulting in a substandard figure.
The Bootleg Megathread that I mentioned in question 7 is a great tool to avoid buying any bootlegs. It has a few tips and tricks to avoiding them to begin with, and a few more on how to spot them if you’re worried you might already own one.
9. Does anyone know when figure X is going to be released? How do I know if it was delayed?
My Figure Collection (sometimes referred to as MFC) does an excellent job of staying on top of information like release dates and delays. If you’re curious about an upcoming figures release date, check there first. This information can be found directly under the “Releases” section on a figure’s entry. If you only see a month and a year in that section, it means the release date has not yet been announced by the manufacturer, and there is still a chance the figure could be delayed.
If you make an account on MFC you can also subscribe to comments, changes, and pictures via a checkbox on the right hand side of a figure’s listing. Subscribing to any of these things will allow MFC to send you an email anytime the subscription in question updates. Subscribing to “changes” is a great way to keep up with release dates and delays, among other things.
10. The figure I want is long sold out at normal retailers! What’s the best place to pick it up in the aftermarket?
A list of reputable retailers can be found under the “Shops” section of the /AnimeFigures sidebar. They all sell legitimate products, and many of them also sell figures second hand. However, the most frequently suggested second hand sites are Mandarake and Amiami- who has a preowned section that they update every night save Sundays and Japanese holidays around 1PM JST and again around 6PM JST.
AmiAmi grades their pre-owned items on a letter scale. The general consensus from buyers is that their ratings are conservative, so unless the item and/or packaging is specifically indicated as having significant flaws, pre-owned items from them are usually in at least as good a condition as their rating suggests.
Note: When you search Mandarake, you’ll get the best results by using the Japanese characters for whatever you are searching. If you don’t know them, you can find them on MFC by clicking on any of the “details” in that figure’s listing.
11. Amiami has a figure I’m interested in labeled as “For sale in Japan only”. Does this mean I can’t order it without a proxy or forwarder?
No, you can still order it. Amiami’s English site has that warning on many items, and it’s mostly meant to inform you that this product was made for a Japanese market, and as such, will have Japanese speaking/writing in it- so don’t expect any instructions to be in English. If Amiami doesn’t want foreigners buying a certain product, they won’t even list it on their English site.

Displaying Your Figures

12. What display cases do you recommend?
If you live near an Ikea try out one of these:
*If you decided on a Detolf, you might find that there is a lot of wasted space. Here are a few tutorials on raising the shelves or and adding extra ones in.
If you don’t live near an Ikea, Amazon has a few display options, though they are more expensive. Also keep an eye on your local Craigslist (or your country’s equivalent) and stores near you that are closing up.
13. What lighting do you guys recommend?
Ikea’s Dioder LED strips are often suggested. They come in white or muti-colored.
Most hardware stores carry something similar though, if you don’t live by an Ikea. Just make sure that the lights don’t get too hot!
14. What are those clear plastic boxes that I see under everyone’s figures in their collection posts, and where can I get them?
Those are called risers. Most of us use standard acrylic risers like these. Some other, easy to find things that have been suggested are:
Check your local hobby store for the first 2 options, or your local hardware store if you want to make your own.
Another common suggestion is to visit The Container Store if you have one near you. They have a lot of things to choose from that can suit a variety of needs. Be sure to check out their standard acrylic risers, their Amac boxes, and the various display cases they sell (baseball cases, mini car cases. hockey puck cases, etc).
15. Should I keep my figures sealed?
That is, of course, up to you really, but here are a few things to keep in mind when debating this question:
  • Keeping it sealed can actually damage your figure. PVC figures usually have something called plasticizer in them, and that plasticizer needs to be able to breath. If a PVC figure isn’t exposed to oxygen, after a period of time the plasticizer starts to break down and form a sticky substance on the surface of the figure. Simply opening your figures and taking them out of the box prevents this from happening. If you happen to find plasticizer goo on one of your figures, Kahotan has a handy guide for dealing with it.
  • Unlike some other figure markets, keeping an anime figure sealed won’t raise its value by a whole lot. In fact, because of the plasticizer problem mentioned above, your figure could actually be in better condition if you open it versus keeping it sealed.

Finding the Right Figure(s) for You

16. There are so many figure companies! Who makes good figures?!
Obviously this is a very subjective question, but as a general starting point, here are a few well renowned figure companies:
  • Alter
  • Max Factory
  • Good Smile Company
  • Kotobukiya (usually hit or miss for people. Use your best judgement based off of the prototype)
  • Aquamarine
  • Flare
  • Stronger
17. I really love “series X / character X”- how can I check if any figures were ever made for it?
My Figure Collection can be your best friend here. Simply do a search on the name of the series or character using the search bar located at the top right of the screen, and all associated figures pop up!
Alternatively, if you’re looking at a figure’s MFC entry, most of the text under the “Details” section can be clicked on and used to run a search.
18. How can I commission a custom figure?
None of the major figure companies (Alter, Kotobukiya, Good Smile Company, etc.) will take a commission for a single figure. This thread has a few websites in it that you can check out, or you can look into garage kits. Some kit painters would be willing to resculpt, frankenstein together, or otherwise modify kits for the right price.

Keeping Up with New Announcements

19. How can I keep up with figure news (announcements, updates, etc.)?
Most people use a MFC combined with any or all of the following news sites:
To use MFC for this I’ll quote question #9.
If you make an account on MFC you can also subscribe to comments, changes, and pictures via a checkbox on the right hand side of a figure’s listing. Subscribing to any of these things will allow MFC to send you an email anytime the subscription in question updates. Subscribing to “changes” is a great way to keep up with release dates and delays, among other things.
Most companies have one or more Twitter accounts. Some examples: Good Smile Company sales, Good Smile's USA branch, Max Factory, AmiAmi Hobby News.
20. Everyone’s excited about something called Wonfes….. what the heck is that?!
WonFes (short for Wonder Festival) is a biannual figure expo where many figure producers (both large and small) show off new sculpts and updates to figures already under way. Most companies save their most exciting announcements for WonFes, so we all look forward to the expo whenever it rolls around! Winter Wonder Festival is usually held in February, while Summer Wonder Festival is usually in July. The event has also spread to Shanghai, in the late spring.
21. One or two (or 15) figures were announced at WonFes that I’m really excited about! How can I keep track of their progress once the event is over?
MFC is always really quick about getting new WonFes announcements (or any others throughout the year, for that matter) listed in their database, so we suggest using that. To find a figure from the event you can search any number of things, including the name of the character or the name of the show. You can also use the tag search to search “WonderFestival 20xx_[season]” to see all items announced at that event.
submitted by AutoModerator to AnimeFigures [link] [comments]


2020.09.09 23:49 trebud69 [US] HIGH&LOW (2016). A Japanese action series that spans multiple movies and "seasons" is being added to Netflix September 20th and here is a quick guide I made up to get you a little familiar with the franchise.

I literally just got into this series 3 weeks ago, before the announcement of it coming to Netflix so here's a quick guide by a recent devotee to this franchise.
Though there are 4 "seasons" that are not coming to netflix and would have to find online, here's a little guide if you're interested in what the franchise is about if you're out of the loop. All movies will be on netflix.
HIGH&LOW is a Japanese action series developed by Exile Tribe, a group of J-Pop bands under one label, who star in this stylistic but wholesome world. Think City of Violence if it was all about the gangs they fought mixed with wholesomeness and comedy of Cobra Kai and a sprinkle of John Wick stylistic cinematography and set design.
There were two seasons that came out in 2015 that was the prologue for the official movie. You can find these two seasons on KissAsian.sh. I personally recommend watching the two seasons before the movies, as it adds character moments that the movies tend to lack for the sake of getting the story and action in.
Then there is the movie Road to HIGH&LOW which is pretty much a retelling of the two seasons.
Then it goes HIGH&LOW The Movie.
Then a spin off film Red Rain where it follows the Amimya Brothers who are pretty much the catalyst who split the Mugen gang into the 5 gangs in the SWORD story, which is what the two seasons are about but you only here of these brothers as a "myth" throughout the whole two seasons and first movie because they're just that badass.
After the spin-off technically the DTC movie is next as it follows 3 of the comedic members of the main gang Sannoh, not an action movie, more of a comedy movie. I say technically because it actually came out after the official 3 movies but chronologically it's before some of them. When I put seasons in quotation I was talking about before the DTC movie there are 11, 3-5 minute episodes to watch before that but unfortunately the only way to watch them with English subs, you have to join MugenClub on LiveJournal, it's run by the one guy who has subbed every HIGH&LOW thing to come out these past 5 years. He moderates it himself and only allows people familiar with the characters already because he doesn't want people to steal his subtitles and take credit since he does it for free.
After DTC it's HIGH&LOW Movie 2 followed by the 3rd movie Final Mission.
After Final Mission there is also another "season" called The Worst Episode.0 which has 6, 25 minute episodes that is a prologue to last movie called The Worst which is actually a tie in to another fictional action-verse where Takashi Miike filmed the first two adaptions of the manga way back in 2007, called the Crow. I'm have not been told whether or not those movies matter but that world gets smashes into the HIGH&LOW franchise with The Worst series and movie. The gang in The Crow movies and manga have been mentioned so possibly it's all connected. You would also have to watch the episodes thru Live Journal, MugenClub.
Well, there ya go. As someone who just found out this series 3 weeks ago, I already binged all of it and find it one of the most wholesome action series to date, next to Cobra Kai. The characters are likeable and can be quite funny but it also is about commraterie and friendship even if you're opposite gangs. It's really worth your time and should watch it.
submitted by trebud69 to NetflixBestOf [link] [comments]


2020.09.09 23:32 trebud69 All movies from the HIGH&LOW franchise is coming to Netflix September 20th.

I literally just got into this series 3 weeks ago, before the announcement of it coming to Netflix so here's a quick guide by a recent devotee to this franchise.
Though there are 4 "seasons" that are not coming to netflix and would have to find online, here's a little guide if you're interested in what the franchise is about if you're out of the loop.
HIGH&LOW is a Japanese action series developed by Exile Tribe, a group of J-Pop bands under one label, who star in this stylistic but wholesome world. Think City of Violence if it was all about the gangs they fought mixed with wholesomeness and comedy of Cobra Kai and a sprinkle of John Wick stylistic cinematography and set design.
There were two seasons that came out in 2015 that was the prologue for the official movie. You can find these two seasons on KissAsian.sh. I personally recommend watching the two seasons before the movies, as it adds character moments that the movies tend to lack for the sake of getting the story and action in.
Then there is the movie Road to HIGH&LOW which is pretty much a retelling of the two seasons.
Then it goes HIGH&LOW The Movie.
Then a spin off film Red Rain where it follows the Amimya Brothers who are pretty much the catalyst who split the Mugen gang into the 5 gangs in the SWORD story, which is what the two seasons are about but you only here of these brothers as a "myth" throughout the whole two seasons and first movie because they're just that badass.
After the spin-off technically the DTC movie is next as it follows 3 of the comedic members of the main gang Sannoh, not an action movie, more of a comedy movie. I say technically because it actually came out after the official 3 movies but chronologically it's before some of them. When I put seasons in quotation I was talking about before the DTC movie there are 11, 3-5 minute episodes to watch before that but unfortunately the only way to watch them with English subs, you have to join MugenClub on LiveJournal, it's run by the one guy who has subbed every HIGH&LOW thing to come out these past 5 years. He moderates it himself and only allows people familiar with the characters already because he doesn't want people to steal his subtitles and take credit since he does it for free.
After DTC it's HIGH&LOW Movie 2 followed by the 3rd movie Final Mission.
After Final Mission there is also another "season" called The Worst Episode.0 which has 6, 25 minute episodes that is a prologue to last movie called The Worst which is actually a tie in to another fictional action-verse where Takashi Miike filmed the first two adaptions of the manga way back in 2007, called the Crow. I'm have not been told whether or not those movies matter but that world gets smashes into the HIGH&LOW franchise with The Worst series and movie. The gang in The Crow movies and manga have been mentioned so possibly it's all connected. You would also have to watch the episodes thru Live Journal, MugenClub.
Well, there ya go. As someone who just found out this series 3 weeks ago, I already binged all of it and find it one of the most wholesome action series to date, next to Cobra Kai. The characters are likeable and can be quite funny but it also is about commraterie and friendship even if you're opposite gangs. It's really worth your time and should watch it.
submitted by trebud69 to kungfucinema [link] [comments]


2020.09.07 10:17 AutoModerator [Bi-Weekly Help & Question Megathread - September 07, 2020] - Master! Your favorite apprentice familiar, Salomon-kun is here!

Don't worry! Salomon-kun will help you with the best I can! Let's see what I have here in my trusty handbook...
Here's some links I found for you! There are more in the sidebar!
Guides and tips for new players
Getting to know your transient
When is the next banner going to be released? When is banner [X] going to be reprinted? * Salomon-kun doesn't know! Your guess is as good as mine. But what I've noticed is that English/Chinese reprints usually come after 1-2 years from the original run date!
Were these not helpful enough for you? Sorry! Salomon-kun tried his best! I'm only an apprentice after all... You'll still rub my belly, right?
Maybe you should try asking the other masters below in the comments!
Salomon-kun asks you to keep in mind that rules regarding behavior and 18+ content still apply here. If you want to talk about the game's story, especially ones that are not translated in game, please be mindful and use the spoilers format for your text. Salomon-kun encourages all the masters here to report and downvote comments that are against the rules!
submitted by AutoModerator to TokyoAfterschool [link] [comments]


2020.09.03 22:21 BlancheFromage The Ikeda cult "sanitizing" that problematic Bodhisattva Quan Yin chapter (25) of the Lotus Sutra

Apparently, no one in SGI realizes that the Quan Yin chapter of the Lotus Sutra recommends a practice - repeating this bodhisattva's name! ["Nam gwan shi yin pu sa"] Nowhere in the Lotus Sutra will you find any recommendation to simply repeat the title of the sutra like a brain-dead dumbass.
But thanks to a very kind contributor who sent me some "Wisdom of the Lotus Sutra" books (I'm still looking for that reincarnation reference, BTW), I found the section where Ikeda and his goons give Chapter 25 the business.
Let's take a look, shall we?
First of all, the Engrish translation of "Quan Yin", "Guan Yin", "Kuanyin", "Kannon" - all this Boddhisattva's names - is "Perceiver of the World's Sounds". The Sanskrit is "Avalokiteśvara", translated as "Hearer of the Sounds of the World", according to this translation. I'm going to be working off the Burton Watson translation and cross referencing his (somewhat garbled) translation with this translation.
Did any of YOU realize this? Does anyone in SGI? My sources say NO.
By using an unfamiliar name for this bodhisattva, the Soka Gakkai's Deception Department Study Department is apparently hoping that the reader will simply lump this bodhisattva in with all the other irrelevant bodhisattvas in the Lotus Sutra ("Inexhaustible Intent", for gods sake, and "Wonderful Sound", for example) and kinda bleep right over it. Using her REAL name might arouse a seeking spirit that asks questions and we can't have THAT, culties, CAN WE?
This bodhisattva is VERY well known, perhaps the best known of any of the bodhisattvas. Quan Yin started out as a dude, but gradually transitioned to a woman (yay trans!) and is now regarded as something of a "mother goddess" figure along the lines of Christianity's Virgin Mary, as she hears the laments of the world's suffering masses.
There are numerous legends that recount the miracles which Quan Yin performs to help those who call on Her.
The Goddess of Mercy is unique among the heavenly hierarchy in that She is so utterly free from pride or vengefulness that She remains reluctant to punish even those to whom a severe lesson might be appropriate. Individuals who could be sentenced to dreadful penance in other systems can attain rebirth and renewal by simply calling upon Her graces with utter and absolute sincerity. It is said that, even for one kneeling beneath the executioner's sword already raised to strike, a single heartfelt cry to Bodhisattva Quan Yin will cause the blade to fall shattered to the ground. Source
There are many beautiful depictions of this bodhisattva, as here and here, and to my knowledge, she is NEVER referred to as "Perceiver of the World's Sounds". By using that translation instead of one of her popular names, these Soka Gakkai spin doctors Study Department minions could acknowledge this chapter while giving it the "Nothing to see here - move along" treatment. If they skipped over it altogether, surely some eagle-eyed intellectually-inclined SGI member (who was actually reading this dreck) would say, "Hey wait a minnit! WHERE'S CHAPTER 25???" So they had to manipulate it so it didn't take away from their Ikeda-centric message or raise any questions.
Thus far, everyone who claims familiarity with the Lotus Sutra has expressed surprise at the contents of Chapter 25, because it's exactly as I say. I suspect that what happens while one is a devout SGI member is that one kinda mentally "skips over" the problematic content, the way so many former Christians realize they did with so much of the nasty stuff about the jeez. It's right there in black and white, but the devout have their antiprocess shields locked down and can't see it.
But WE can.
This comes from "The Wisdom of the Lotus Sutra: A Discussion", Volume VI: Examining Chapters 23-28, Part III, pp. 71-98. The authors credited are, of course, Daisakoober Ikeduhhhh, and, in a fascinating twist, Katsuji Saito, Takanori Endo, and Haruo Suda. There are abundant references such as I'm describing; I'll just pull out a few.
First of all, the title should raise an eyebrow or two: "Universal Gateway". "Universal" means "for EVERYONE" and a "gateway" is what one passes through. That means ALL CAN ENTER. Alternatively:
Why is this chapter (Chapter 25 of the Lotus Sutra) called the Universal Door? Because this practice is so easy, it can be done by anyone – so it is universal:
Is this starting to sound familiar?? It should O_O
You don’t have to be intelligent enough to understand the Sutras and all the subtle, deep, profound meanings within them to practice this. Source
See? Even complete dummyheads can play!! EVEN IDIOTS LIKE YOU!
I love it when the religious talk down to me :D
So, starting on p. 71, Our Heroes begin by obfuscating:
Ikeda: Compassion is the basic prerequisite of a leader. This is all that really matters. To be a leader is to cherish and protect each person. The "Universal Gateway of the Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds" chapter calls to mind the image of such a compassionate leader.
"Like MEEEE! Everyone should now be thinking about MEEEE just like I am!! Always thinking about MEEEE!!"
Note: This chapter is NOT about "leadership".
Saito: Indeed, Perceiver of the World's Sounds displays a kindness that resembles motherly love.
Endo: This bodhisattva is also sometimes referred to as the "merciful mother Perceiver of the World's Sounds".
Ikeda: We all think fondly of our mothers.
SUBJECT: **CHANGED*
Two pages in, despite linking this bodhisattva to mothers, they ALL refer to QuanYin as "him" despite this bodhisattva being widely acknowledged as female throughout the world:
Endo: I think this quality of motherly compassion explains why Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds has enjoyed such popularity.
Suda: The SGI treasures each member with a kindness that is, in a sense, even greater than that of a parent. No matter what a person going through, SGI members support one another, sharing another's worries and offering encouragement.
GREAT one, Mr. Suda! 🤣🤣🤣🤣 That's HILAROUS! But can we get back to what we're actually TALKING ABOUT???
Ikeda: Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds is so named because he listens with great compassion to all sounds and voices in the world, to the voices of suffering people, and he embraces and responds to them. He listens, understands and takes action in response to the true feelings of each person.
Notice how Ikeda so often describes himself using those exact terms... He's making this all about himself.
Ikeda: Isn't this boundless kindness exactly what identifies Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds? This is why he is so widely revered.
Saito: This bodhisattva is so well known that, in the East, even people who have never heard of the Lotus Sutra are familiar with Perceiver of the World's Sounds.
Not by that name they aren't!
Suda: In India, China, Korea, Japan and many other Asian countries, no bodhisattva is better known. The number of shrines built to him also far exceeds those built to any other bodhisattva. People have continually entrusted their hopes to Perceiver of the World's Sounds.
In that lost email I spoke about peace in the Mideast. How could people there have dialogue when it's clear there's that immovable object colliding with the unstoppable force. How do even whispers get heard in all the cacaphony?
Oops - sorry. Continuing:
Endo: That's because he is said to save people from all dangers and difficulties at all times and in all places.
Oh, how silly those Orientals are! Look how irrational they are!
They're making this out like it's some sort of cultural lore or mythology instead of being EXACTLY what the Lotus Sutra STATES!
Have a look - this is a translation by Burton Watson, and he's feeding into the confusion:
Chapter Twenty-five: The Universal Gate of Bodhisattva Kanzeon
He uses one of Bodhisattva QuanYin's less-common names in the title, but the rest of the chapter, he uses "Perceiver of the World's Sounds" - which is supposedly the same thing - but nowhere does he correlate the two.
"Suppose, in a place filled with all the evil-hearted bandits of the thousand-million-fold world, there is a merchant leader who is guiding a band of merchants carrying valuable treasures over a steep and dangerous road, and that one man shouts out these words: 'Good men, do not be afraid! You must single-mindedly call on the name of Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds. This bodhisattva can grant fearlessness to living beings. If you call his name, you will be delivered from these evil-hearted bandits!' When the band if merchants hear this, they all together raise their voices, saying, 'Hail to the Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds!'
Note that one translation of "Nam myoho renge kyo" is "Hail, Glorious Sutra of the Wonderful Law and another is "to devote oneself to the Wonderful Law of the Lotus Sutra".
And because they call his name, they are at once able to gain deliverance. Inexhaustible Intent, the authority and supernatural power of the Bodhisattva and mahasattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds are as mighty as this!
Here is the other translation:
When a caravan leader travels on a dangerous road together with his fellow merchants, carrying precious treasures in a great manifold cosmos filled with evil robbers, if there be a single person who says:
O sons of a virtuous family! Do not fear! You should wholeheartedly chant the name of Bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara. This bodhisattva bestows fearlessness upon sentient beings. If you chant his name, you will be free from these evil robbers.
“Now, if those merchants chant loudly in unison, saying: Homage to Bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara!
“Then, by chanting his name, the caravan will immediately gain deliverance. O Akṣayamati! The transcendent power of Bodhisattva Mahāsattva Avalokiteśvara is as great and mighty as this.
Hm. Back to Burton Watson:
"Suppose there were a hundred, a thousand, ten thousand, a million living beings who, seeking for gold, silver, lapis lazuli, seashell, agate, coral, amber, pearls, and other treasures, set out on the great sea. and suppose a fierce wind should blow their ship off course and it drifted to the land of rakshasas demons. If among those people there is even just one who calls the name of Bodhisattva [Quan Yin], then all those people will be delivered from their troubles with the rakshasas. This is why he is called [Quan Yin]."
Notice how similar in wording and intent that is to this from an earlier Ikeda "guidance":
When I think of the hellish picture of the sinking Titanic, I wish there could have been some who chanted daimoku. Source
psshhhh As if that would have changed anything at all... But let's proceed:
Here's another translation:
If they were adrift on the great waters, by chanting his name they would reach the shallows. There are hundreds of thousands of myriads of koṭis of sentient beings who enter the great ocean to seek such treasures as gold, silver, lapis lazuli, mother-of-pearl, agate, coral, amber, and pearl. Even if a cyclone were to blow the ship of one of these toward the land of rākṣasa demons, they would all become free from the danger of those rākṣasa demons if there were even a single person among them who chanted the name of Bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara. For this reason he is called Avalokiteśvara.
That's pretty clear, isn't it? HOW did Nichiren miss this?? WHY did SGI-paid Burton Watson choose the wording he did?
"If a person who faces imminent threat of attack should call the name of Bodhisattva [Quan Yin], then the swords and staves wielded by his attackers would instantly shatter into so many pieces and he would be delivered."
"Though enough yakshas and rakshasas to fill all the thousand-million-fold world should try to come and torment a person, if they hear him calling the name of Bodhisattva [Quan Yin], then these evil demons will not even be able to look at him with their evil eyes, much less do him harm." Lotus Sutra Chapter 25
It goes on like that for, basically, the entire chapter. "Call on Bodhisattva Quan Yin!"
Yet in the Soka Gakkai treatment of this chapter, they do not acknowledge the "calling on Bodhisattva QuanYin's name" aspect AT ALL! Not even ONCE! This is what the Lotus Sutra ITSELF says that everyone is supposed to do, and Ikeda and his duplicitous cronies IGNORE it!
Imagine if I text my husband, saying, "On your way home from the kids' soccer game, please stop at the store and pick up a gallon of milk" and he tells them, "Mom says we can stop for ice cream on the way home!"
Saito: He is so famous that in China he is revered as a Taoist deity. It seems that the attraction people have toward this bodhisattva transcends even the boundaries of religion.
"But WE want nothing whatsoever to do with evil Taoism, do we, SGI members? Of course not! Look away...look away..."
You're going to love this next part:
Endo: It must be his kindness that people are drawn to.
Suda: His face definitely displays warmth and gentleness.
AND femininity! O.O
Ikeda: Nothing is as powerful as kindness. Nothing can better win over a person's heart. No eternal flame is as strong or as bright. Its brilliance illuminates people's hearts. It ignites the light of hope. Kindness is true soft power.
Oh brother. So why hasn't a single person you've paid for held a dialogue with converted and become your "disciple", Daisucky? The eternal flame at your monument to yourself, the Sho-Hondo at Taiseki-ji has been snuffed out. And the SGI, which is exactly as authoritarian as you have specified, is hemorrhaging members.
Note that this "discussion" happened some time before 1995; the Sho-Hondo wasn't torn down until 1998, so Ikeda may have been alluding to that with his "eternal flame" comment, about how the Sho-Hondo was to be the place where all peoples of the world would make a pilgrimage to pay homage to the Dai-Gohonzon.
And that "soft power" bullshit is what Ikeda's infamous "Harvard (non)speech" was all about. Kinda think I need to revisit that - perhaps tomorrow.
Carrying on:
Suda: Yes. Hard power clearly does not attract people.
Oh, that mirror needs a polishin', I'm thinking!
Ikeda: Soft means compassion, power is force. It is the force of compassion.
OH PLEASE!!

BARF!

Ikeda: The foundation of culture, peace and education is compassion - kindness toward human beings. The soft of soft power implies limitless kindness, which gives rise to limitless strength.
uh...NO - it means having RESPECT for others and their rights and their CONSENT!
Ikeda: Also, underlying kindness is strength; without strength, we cannot be kind to others. Behind the beautiful kindness of Perceiver of the World's Sounds is his courage to seek and spread the Mystic Law without begrudging his life.
NO! It's NOT! It doesn't say that ANYWHERE IN THE CHAPTER! This bodhisattva has supernatural powers and is IMMORTAL! There's no "life" to "begrudge"!
From the Lotus Sutra:
"If there should be living beings beset by numerous lusts and cravings, let them think with constant reverence of Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds and then they can shed their desires. If they have great wrath and ire, let them think with constant reverence of Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds and then they can shed their ire. If they have great ignorance and stupidity, let them think with constant reverence of Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds and they can rid themselves of stupidity.
Yet NONE of these stupids refer to this very clear instruction about reverence!
"Inexhaustible Intent, this Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds has succeeded in acquiring benefits such as these and. Taking on a variety of different forms, goes about among the lands saving living beings. For this reason you and the others should single-mindedly offer alms to Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds can bestow fearlessness on those who are in fearful, pressing or difficult circumstances [sic]. That is why in this saha world everyone calls him Bestower of Fearlessness."
That [sic] sentence translates this way in the other translation:
“O Akṣayamati! This Bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara displays such qualities, wanders through many lands in various forms, and saves sentient beings. For this reason you should wholeheartedly pay homage to Bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara. This Bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara bestows fearlessness in times of fearful calamity. For this reason everybody in this sahā world calls him Abhayaṃdada (Giver of Fearlessness).
The Bodhisattva Akṣayamati addressed the Buddha, saying: “O Bhagavat! I shall now pay homage to Bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara.”
Hm. REALLY odd that Nichiren completely missed this, isn't it?
But there's no excuse for Ikeda et. al. to be glossing over it to the point that they don't even MENTION it. It's the whole point of the chapter!
Enso: To pray to Perceiver of the World's Sounds without believing in and accepting the Mystic Law would be putting the cart before the horse.
Except that that's what the Lotus Sutra says to do. No other requirements; that's why it's called "UNIVERSAL Door"!
Ikeda: Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds is encompassed in the life of the original Buddha from the remote past; that is to say, in the Gohonzon. The function of Perceiver of the World's Sounds is just a small aspect of the beneficial power of the Gohonzon - of the Mystic Law.
"Which means you should all just not worry your silly little heads about any of this."
Ikeda: There is even a history of people placing their faith in this chapter as an independent sutra.
Perhaps it was:
Nothing is known about the authors of the Lotus Sutra. Given the content of the text, however, scholars assume that they were monks associated with the Mahayana Buddhist movement. The Lotus Sutra as it is known today is a pastiche of several distinct works, written at different times by different people for different purposes over a period of several centuries. Source, p. 374.
These texts insist that they are the word of the Buddha. That insistence (along with a host of other factors) has led scholars to conclude that they are not. The Lotus is particularly famous in this regard, constantly exhorting its devotees to copy it and preserve it, with the Buddha offering all manner of future rewards—including buddhahood—for those who do and threatening horrible fates in hell for those who don’t.
Still, you have to sympathize with the authors of these sutras. The Buddha’s enlightenment is said to encompass all knowledge, and he is said to have taught everything that was necessary to reach enlightenment. He left no successor, and it will be billions of years before Maitreya, the next Buddha, comes. From that perspective, when he passed into nirvana the canon was closed. Yet religions change and innovations occur. How can those who seek change, who have a new vision of the path, articulate that vision without placing it in the mouth of the Buddha? Source
The 25th chapter, which describes the glory and special powers of the great bodhisattva of compassion, Avalokitiśvara (Chinese Kuan-yin; Japanese Kannon), has had an important separate life under the name of Kuan-yin Ching (Japanese Kannon-gyō). Source
5.1 The position of the Lotus Sutra in the history of Mahayana Buddhism
As I have written elsewhere, I assume that the Lotus Sutra was shaped gradually to its present form. Based on results of the research of our predecessors as well as my own, I have tentatively divided the process of formation of the Sutra into four stages as follows:
(1) Tristubh-Jagati verses, found in chapters from the Upayakausalya- (II) to the Vyakarana-parivarta (IX)
(2) Sloka verses and prose, found in those chapters
(3) Chpaters from the Dharmabhanaka0 (X) to the Tathagatarddhyabhasamskara-parivarta (XX), as well as Nidana- (I) and Anuparindana-parivarta (XXVII)
(4) The other chapters (XXI-XXVI) and the latter half of the Stupasamdarsana-parivarta(XI), i.e. the so-called Devadatta-parivarta
While exact dates of formation are impossible to determine, I assume that the Sutra came into existence in this order, apart from some exceptions such as the verse portion of the Samantamukha-parivarta(XXIV) which probably existed as an independent text but was later incorporated into the Lotus Sutra. Source, p. 171.
Continuing on:
Endo: Shakyamuni replies that if there are beings experiencing suffering of any kind and they hear of this bodhisattva and single-mindedly clal his name, "then at once he will perceive the sound of their voices and they will all gain deliverance from their trials." In other words, they will be saved just by intoning his name. The fact that his help can be gained so easily would seem to be one reason for the spread of belief in him.
Endo, you're such a pill! Sensei has to constantly clean up after you!
The book then quotes from the Burton Watson translation; note that "Think on the power of that Perceiver of Sounds" is translated as "contemplate the power of Avalokiteśvara", which suggests meditation in a way that "think on" does not, in my opinion.
Ikeda: Of course, from the standpoint of Nichiren Buddhism, calling the name of Perceiver of the World's Sounds means chanting the name of the "Nam-myoho-renge-kyo Thus Come One," the original Buddha of the remote past who is the source of Perceiver of the World's Sounds' power. It is the practice of chanting daimoku.
If that were the case, why did the Lotus Sutra not say that? What Ikeda's explaining is that you can go to McDonald's wanting a Big Mac sandwich, and if you order, say, "a Filet-o-Fish", you'll get a Big Mac!
Ikeda: Nichiren Daishonin says, "Those who attained enlightenment by listening to the six chapters from the 'Medicine King' chapter on are merely those who had remained unenlightened after gaining blessings from the verse section of the 'Life Span' chapter." Citing this passage, President Toda would often say, "The 'Perceiver of the World's Sounds' chapter is really nothing but the leftovers from the 'Life Span' chapter."
That's ONE way to steer people away from it, isn't it?
Ikeda: Nam-myoho-renge-kyo is the source from which Perceiver of the World's Sounds derives his strength.
Evidence? Didn't think so. Saying it's so doesn't make it so, you know.
Ikeda: Therefore, the Daishonin declares, "Now that we have entered the Latter Day of the Law, the benefits Nichiren and his followers enjoy in their chanting of Nam-myoho-renge-kyo are as far above those conferred by Perceiver of the World's Sounds as heaven is above earth or clouds are above mud."
Suda: The Daishonin is saying that even though the benefits enumerated in the "Perceiver of the World's Sounds" chapter are vast beyond belief, they cannot compare with the benefit of chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. This is quite a statement.
Yes, indeed - it is quite a statement. But notice that Nichiren started with garbage - nothing but his own opinion. Why should anyone take him seriously? Nichiren even admitted at the end of his life that he had been wrong all along. And we can look at the "actual proof" of the people who chant Nam-myoho-renge-kyo and see that they're typically doing worse in life than those who don't chant anything at all! The practice of worshiping the Bodhisattva Guanyin remains widespread; the Nichiren practice has never come anywhere close to its popularity, despite Nichiren's promise of more and better benefits. Chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo simply does not deliver - that's why most people quit. They simply don't want to waste any more of their time.
And they don't go back.
Ikeda: All of these could be summed up as the benefit of achieving an accident-free and tranquil life. This is why the "Perceiver of the World's Sounds" chapter is also referred to as the "Chapter for Removing Misfortune and Prolonging Life."
President Toda described these benefits in terms that we can easily understand, saying:
1) If you are running a business and trying to earn a profit, some calamity may befall you. At such a time, if you place your trust in the Gohonzon, you can avert disaster.
Yet Toda's "credit cooperative" failed and he was indicted on criminal charges, leading to his quitting his leadership position within the Soka Gakkai!
2) If someone decides to cause you trouble or you experience a major loss, trouble will instead befall that person and your loss will turn into gain.
Nope. That's never a guaranteed outcome and more often than not doesn't occur.
3) When you are suffering due to earthly desires or illness, if you place your faith in the Gohonzon, earthly desires will turn into enlightenment and the devil of illness will be powerless.
Tell us again about your favorite son's untimely death from a stomach ailment that is rarely fatal, Ikeda SCAMSEI.
4) Should you fall from a cliff or have a car accident, if you believe in the Gohonzon, you will not be injured.
What a load of crap! I knew someone in the SGI while I was still "in" who had lost her leg in a car accident! She claimed her "benefit" was that the doctors were able to save her other leg O_O
5) If someone tries to get you fired from your job, if you believe in the Gohonzon, that person will instead be forced to quit and you will keep your job.
Bullshit.
6) If someone hates you or tries to harm you, if you have strong faith, he or she will have a change of heart.
I wouldn't count on that!
7) Even if you face execution, if you have strong faith, you will be let off. This is what is meant by "the executioner's sword will be broken to bits." This is the principle that the Daishonin himself demonstrated.
Is this sort of "get out of consequences free" card good for society, though? Do YOU want the murderer next door getting off instead of being placed safely behind bars where they can't get YOU the next time they get a hankerin' for some murderin'? And that reference to the Daishonin is a pile of baloney. Nichiren never said that the executioner's sword broke, but that's what all the artwork about the incident shows. Liars and their lying lies.
8) Even if you face imprisonment, if you have strong faith, you will be exonerated and sent home.
Tell that to all the Soka Gakkai members who took the fall for Ikeda for election fraud - they didn't get off:
The Komeito succeeded in reducing to eight the number of Soka Gakkai members who were indicted by the public prosecutor. All of these were convicted; Takashi Miyamoto and Akio Sunagawa (both chapter level Soka Gakkai leaders) served time in jail, and the remaining six received suspended sentences. The Soka Gakkai claimed officially that those members convicted were acting out of their own volition and were not carrying out organization policy. Source
9) If someone tries to poison you or if you are vilified, the perpetrator will find himself in the exact same situation. This is what is meant by the principle that the injury rebounds upon the originator.
Oh, you mean how Ikeda claimed that someone's child's DEATH was a "punishment for sin" (that and another child's death are described here), and then Ikeda's OWN son died young?
10) Even in a powerful storm, those who have strong faith will not be harmed.
Ha. Riiiiiight...
Endo: Mr. Toda's explanation is very clear.
ALSO very wrong!
Ikeda: Though this wonderful state of life is available to all, many people don't seem to want it! Instead, they seem desirous of anything else and content themselves with pursuing immediate gain! And then if they are subjected to the slightest insult, they begin to doubt the Gohonzon!
No! Say it isn't so!!
Praying with doubt is like trying to keep water in a bathtub with the plug pulled. Your good fortune and benefit will drain away. A passage from the "Perceiver of the World's Sounds" chapter reads, "from thought to thought never entertaining doubt!" A confident prayer will reverberate powerfully throughout the entire universe.
Easy to say, of course. But what of Chapter 1 of the Lotus Sutra, in which we find THIS?
 Having rained the Dharma, The Buddha will satisfy those seeking the path. If there is anyone seeking the three vehicles Who still has any doubts, The Buddha will completely remove them, Extinguishing them with none left over. 
So why should we believe it's entirely up to US? "The Buddha" is supposed to convince us! And that isn't our responsibility!
Ikeda: While the "Perceiver of the World's Sounds" chapter speaks of the benefit of offering obeisance and alms to Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World's Sounds, this of course means praying and making offerings to the Gohonzon.
"Of course". Wait - what??
Were you nodding along half asleep by this point? I think that was #GOALZ.
That's probably enough for now - the whole thing is just dumb. But hopefully you can see how Ikeda and his minions twist things so that they can be taken to mean something entirely different from what the words say.
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2020.09.03 14:31 IndependentYoga GameStore Jackpot Tournament: Tinbo Dash

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2020.09.03 07:50 Aqua4748 Theory about what could happen after chapter 154

Hello all! I’m here to theorize what may happen in the next few chapters. This all started when the traveling nerd side of me was interested in Shonan, which is where Kazuya and Sumi are going next. That spiraled down into researching the area and, eventually, making a guess of what happens next. This channel hasn't been active recently, and its being misused a bit as well, so I figured I would throw in some small (and definitely pointless) analysis about this chapter to maybe help figure out what’s going down.
Disclaimer: This is all a stretch. A really really big stretch. Don’t take anything I say as a truth. It’s a theory.
As stated in the translators note at the bottom of page 15, Shonan is a popular beach area in Japan. Upon looking at the Wikipedia page, Shonan is specifically a region and not a prefecture, city, or ward. It is used to describe a group of cities along the coast within the Kanagawa prefecture. Interesting to note that Sumi doesn’t really refer to the Shonan region, but she points to the Shonan line (page 15). Therefore, we are going somewhere on that line.
Since I’m a bit of a train nerd, I looked into the Shonan line. Because Shonan is an area, there is no concrete evidence as to what stop along the Shinjuku-Shonan line the two will be getting off at. After googling a map of the Shinjuku-Shonan line, we can see that the earliest stop that is considered to be “in Shonan” would be Yokohama station, with the latest being Kamakura station (see this map here). According to the Shinjuku Station Guide website, the ride from Shinjuku station to Yokohama station is around 35 minutes, while the ride to Kamakura station is around 61 minutes. Basically, this means that this trip is not some crazy long distance one, and that whatever these two are doing in Shonan can be wrapped up in one day. Since we can see that it is around 12:30 or at least between 12:00 and 13:00 it is in 154 (according to the train arrival times shown on page 15), and it only takes at most around one hour to travel to and from Shinjuku to a station in Shonan, we can guess that the two will head there, do something, and come back all in a day’s time.
But where exactly? Well when you think beach you don’t usually think about the city right? And why would we go to a city when Kazuya and Sumi already live in a city. For that reason, I think we are going to Kamakura station and therefore Kamakura itself, as it is farthest from any big city while being the closest to the beach. Yokohama is literally the second largest city in Japan by population, and the rest of the stations are too far inland to be considered a station you would get off at to go to the beach.
In addition, even though Sumi says she wants to go to the sea, that does not always mean the beach exactly (as we know Sumi doesn’t speak much anyway so we can’t be sure she articulated her thoughts fully). To me, when Sumi says we are going to the sea on page 17, she could just mean the general seaside area, or Kamakura in this case. In addition, Sumi says on page 18 that she wants to do something, which to me alludes to more than just sitting on the beach and talking things out. Sumi seems like she means business, so she has a specific action in mind. So now we’re in Kamakura, now what? Well, Kamakura has three notable things in its city: A lot of Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines, the beach, and this long street called the Wakamiya Oji that connects from the beach to a Shinto shrine in the middle of the city. Now, what has Sumi done in the past for Kazuya? Well, she has taken him to places to inspire him with ideas on what to do, like when she inspired him to get plums for Chizuru’s birthday by taking him to watch her performance of that rental rangers show in chapter 68. She has also sat down to listen to him vent his problems out to her, which she has kind of done already but not really to the extent that we saw them do it last time in chapters 97-98, which means there is still room for them to have another vent session again. Sumi can do similar things for Kazuya here in Kamakura. To start, I can totally see Sumi dragging Kazuya a Shinto shrine to pray. Most likely this would be the Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine in the middle of the city next to Wakamiya Oji, which is the gardens, ponds. Characters in the manga have shown to partake in Shinto activities, such as when they go to the shrine for a news years visit in chapters 34 – 36, or when they pray to the “gods” (Shinto is a polytheistic religion meaning there are multiple gods) for the crowdfunding to go well in chapter 112. As redditor JakalDX puts it… “’shintoism’ as practiced in Japan is essentially a syncretic religion combining elements of Shintoism, a folk religion, and Buddhism. Some people call it, appropriately, Shinto-Buddhism. But Japanese people aren't ‘religious’, generally, not the way Christians are. Religion is more cultural than a deep belief for most people,” which can explain the potential of the two of them visiting a shrine to pray. Maybe the two of them go to the shrine to pray for Chizuru’s well being and mental health, or maybe they pray that Chizuru will bring her wall down and be willing to allow Kazuya, Sumi, and others to support her, or both? Either way I think there is potential for the two of them to visit a shrine if they are in Kamakura
After that, the two of them could take a walk down Wakamiya Oji towards the beach, which is even easier if they go to the Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, as Wakamiya Oji connects directly from that shrine to the beach. The road itself is nothing much, but there is a middle walkway in between the lanes for cars that goes on for a bit before disappearing. It has a few historical landmarks along it’s path, but I don’t know if those will actually be tied into anything or will provide any significant roles in the story. Maybe if the actual chapter comes out and Reiji showcases specific landmarks I will talk about them, but the only thing I can think of is the two lion statues flanking either side of the Ni no Torii, which is one of the three Torii that are along Wakamiya Oji (pictured here). These lions supposedly signal the beginning and end of all things, which could be a representation of… the story right now? Chizuru and her wall? The two’s relationship? The story as a whole? Nothing at all? Regardless, if anything the road will still lead Sumi and Kazuya to the beach from the shrine. Maybe Sumi drags Kazuya into stores that line the side of the road and tries to show Kazuya some ideas for things to give Chizuru? Who knows.
Another potential thing is that the two of them can go to the Kamakura Komachi-dori Street, which is a modern street in a city that is full of traditional and historical aspects of Japan. Since we already established that it’s sometime in the afternoon, Sumi and Kazuya can kill time around here. Maybe they grab something to eat, or go shopping, or Sumi drags Kazuya around to show him specific things? You can purchase traditional souvenirs here, which is something Kazuya may look to purchase for… some reason. I’m just throwing this out as a possible location because they have a lot of time, and like Reiji doesn’t have to focus on that. He can show panels of Sumi and Kazuya having fun in different parts of the street, in different stores doing different things, with no text or conversations, and then cut to the evening when they end up at the beach.
Speaking of the beach, they have to end up here at some point I feel like. There is nothing much to the beach, which is called Yuigahama, other than that it is popular, and I was thinking maybe the name would be of significance but there is no agreement as to the origin of the name. Here, we may see Sumi and Kazuya sit down and talk about things, or at least have another moment where Kazuya talks and Sumi listens. However, we know about fanservice and the typical “beach episode” so maybe this is it. I mean, we’ve seen Chizuru, Mami, and Ruka in swimsuits, so this probably is Sumi’s time to get in a swimsuit. I don’t think the two of them would just be swimming for no reason, and judging by Sumi’s words of “The sea soothes the soul” on page 17, maybe she intends to try and tell/reassure Kazuya of something by taking him to enjoy the beach and soothe his soul. Perhaps this is Sumi’s way of showing Kazuya what he can do for Chizuru?
Also, I didn’t know where to throw this in, so I’m just going to stick it in here. We know that the current date is sometime before September 20th (as the 20th is the movie screening, which has not happened as we know). Kamakura actually holds a festival from September 14th to the 16th called the Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gū Reitaisai festival, which is a festival held at the Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine and involves many traditional Japanese cultural events. Maybe that is happening and Sumi and Kazuya go visit that?
OBVIOUSLY, this chapter is all theory and there is nothing concrete about it, but the last thing I say is that it can be done. The "dates" throughout the manga usually take around 3-4 chapters, and while this is no longer a date officially, we can theorize that this event may fall along those guidelines. If we are going to Kamakura, I predict a 4 chapter adventure. 155 is the two getting to Kamakura and visiting the Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine. 156 is them along Wakamiya Oji (and maybe Kamakura Komachi-dori Street). 157 is the beach finally, and 158 is the beach part 2 (because the emotional talk probably takes two chapters like it did with Sumi and Kazuya last conversation in 97-98) and their trip home. All of that in an afternoon/evening? Yeah, I think it’s possible.
Anyway, join us next week when Kazuya and Sumi end up not going to Kamakura and this entire theory is pointless. It’s all a stretch, but that’s why it’s called a theory. Thank's for reading.
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2020.09.03 06:55 HomerQuotingHomer The case for #FlattentheCurve – summarising the contrarian position to elimination and lockdowns

Preface
As one of the regular ‘lockdown skeptics’ here, I thought it would be worthwhile more carefully laying out rationale on the essential points of the contrary position to the strategy of elimination (and lockdowns – note: plural). I would like to be able to start with laying out the position and then move into more detailed conversations and data-points in subsequent comments or posts. I do not imagine it is possible to address every nuance in a single discussion.
In being a skeptic of the current strategy, I tend to occupy a similar or adjacent position to several other regulars. However, I do not pretend to represent their position, nor am I necessarily adopting their positions either. As with all topics there is a spectrum of views.
So, the reasons for this post are three-fold:
  1. Articulate the position as clearly as possible.
  2. Engage with productive and considered critique; and
  3. Discover where common ground might be.
For the purposes of framing any discussion moving forward, it is worth calling out a couple of things :
So, in the words of our Premier… You right to go?
The premise – three essential assertions of an alternative strategy
Australia’s current strategy is being called “aggressive suppression” by the national cabinet and federal government. This is a bullshit term invented for political expediency and to avoid admission that the strategy changed because of our “early success”. I doubt anyone will vehemently disagree on that point, but for the purposes of clarity I am taking the goal of “zero community transmission” as broadly equivalent to elimination.
You will no doubt notice the adoption of the #FlattentheCurve moniker. This is both a jibe at the fact that the strategy changed and, more importantly, that “the curve” (community transmission) is inevitable and we will need to accept that fact (which I get into below).
The three essential assertions of the contrary position are as follows:
  1. Elimination is not a sustainable strategy.
  2. Avoiding SARS-CoV-2 / COVID-19 is an unrealistic and imagined goal. Instead, we should be evaluating our strategies with reference to mitigation of excess mortality against background mortality. The costs of those mitigations (including adverse impacts on lives and livelihoods) need to be balanced realistically against the potential benefits of those mitigations.
  3. Repeated and continued use of lockdowns (which is the currently preferred tool for attempting elimination) is inherently wasteful and deleterious to the public good.
It is important to recognise that the first and second assertions are more important than simply “opposing lockdowns”. Opposition to lockdowns is largely a product of holding the first two positions.
So, to understand why an alternative strategy might be better, we need first need unpack why elimination will not be sustainable. This alone is not fully sufficient because we must also weigh and observe the impacts of COVID-19 within the context of our established understanding of mortality. We also need to consider lockdowns and overall public policy (including border closures), and whether there are not better options available to us to address the virus moving forward.
A contrary strategy says that we must accept a level community transmission in those parts of our community that are not at significant mortality risk from the virus. Our failure to do so will mean our outcomes are no better than other countries and could well be much worse overall.
Sidebar: I predict that we will not see another lockdown in Australia like we have in Melbourne and Victoria even if there is another outbreak. There may be localised lockdowns or potentially lockdowns of a less populous cities. But, if the virus gets away again in Sydney or Melbourne, I cannot see the nation bearing another lockdown near this scale. Obviously, this prediction could be wrong, but if it eventuated then I expect it would be a trigger to change back to #FlattentheCurve.
Unpacking elimination and isolation
The first assertion is simple. We live in a globalised and interconnected world, and that is quite fundamental to how the country operates normally and how we remain a prosperous nation. To remain part of that world (and not become a hermit nation) we will need to open ourselves up at some point in the relatively near future. Ipso facto, the virus is going to get back into Australia at some point in the near future.
We are currently attempting to lockdown our borders just hard enough so that the virus cannot get through the quarantine layer until we have and deploy a vaccine. Although this is obviously very difficult and subject to failure (as shown by both Victoria and New Zealand) it is most certainly what we are trying to do right now. Aside from New Zealand, we are a real outlier on the world stage in this regard. We are the guinea pig countries for an experiment in lockdowns and eliminations.
Why is that important to recognise? In the normal course of life (i.e. absent the virus), we absolutely know that those countries which isolate themselves and their populations (or are isolated by others) tend to generate much poorer outcomes over time.
This brings us to some key assumptions. A successful strategy of elimination and temporary isolation relies on two critical things eventuating:
  1. A safe vaccine arriving and being deployed relatively quickly so that our condition for re-opening is met. The acceptable timeframes have not actually been stated by the government (which is a massive gap in the current strategy), but we can roughly guess that we have a general expectation for no later than mid-2021.
  2. That the vaccine is sufficiently effective to either prevent transmission of the virus or to largely attenuate the level of mortality that we are observing from COVID-19 in other countries. Again, we have a significant gap in the strategy, what are our expectations for attenuating mortality with a vaccine? This is absent too.
We could say the second point is far more important than the first (because avoidance of mortality is the implied goal), but both are necessary for the strategy to be successful. So, what sounds as simple as “eliminate and wait” is actually very difficult, an outlier compared to most of the world, and not without substantial risk of its own. We will come back to the hopes of the vaccine at a later stage.
SARS-CoV-2 transmission and COVID-19 mortality
It should be uncontroversial to say that the original models made assumptions regarding SARS-CoV-2 transmission and COVID-19 mortality which were significantly overstated. The trend of meta-analysis has consistently shown two things:
  1. Mortality is both much lower than originally feared (2%+) and is clearly stratified in the elderly and older populations with comorbidities. https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.07.23.20160895v4.full.pdf
  2. Natural herd immunity benefits (note: not complete herd immunity) are accruing at lower transmission levels than originally assumed. Likely due to population heterogeneity, as well as climate factors https://science.sciencemag.org/content/369/6505/846
Recognising this is important, but why?
The data has changed, but our strategy has only become more rigid. We are less tolerant of the virus within the general community despite a lower actual risk. Preliminary observations are supporting a view that the virus becomes significantly less deadly to the population once a level of natural immunity is established, but this is not discussed by our government or health leaders. They have not come back to the public to explain what is being observed overseas and how this deviates from initial fears.
Regardless, let us all agree that COVID-19 is too serious a threat to simply let it run wild without any mitigation whatsoever. In other words, the contrary position is not a “let it rip” proposition. In fact, that is a lazy strawman thrown around by people who simply want to maintain the narrative they have already established rather than engaging in the fact there are multiple options open to us (more on this soon).
Perspective on mortality and tolerance of mortality
To properly engage in a conversation around whether our current strategy is the right one, you would need to recognise that background mortality, and acceptance of that mortality, is a feature of life, every year, in every country.
As a developed nation and reasonably educated populace, we know a few truths I hope:
This is the point where someone yells that I am happy to “sacrifice the old” and there is “no cost too high to save a life”. This is nonsense thinking. Have these people been asleep in every single year prior to this one?
Our society works by balancing a range of factors associated with health outcomes, economics (wealth and prosperity), personal rights, cultural norms, etc. etc... Public policy weighs all these factors (not just one factor) and by extension attributes a value to the various factors. In the real world, where resources are limited and trade-offs are real, sensible policy will attribute a value to life and a quality life year:
“Based on international and Australian research a credible estimate of the value of statistical life is $4.9m and the value of statistical life year is $213,000 in 2019 dollars.”
https://www.pmc.gov.au/sites/default/files/publications/value-of-statistical-life-guidance-note_0_0.pdf
What is particularly interesting about COVID-19 is how unmoored the political and public narrative seems to be as compared to established public policy on mortality risk and risk aversion. From the Abelson paper ‘Establishing a Monetary Value for Lives Saved: Issues and Controversies’:
“Not surprisingly, willingness to pay to reduce the risk of death varies significantly with the type of death.”
https://www.pmc.gov.au/sites/default/files/publications/Working_paper_2_Peter_Abelson.pdf
COVID-19 currently holds a very special place in this regard. Governments, at least in Australasia, have had a sudden and massively increased willingness to incur unprecedented costs (not just financial expense) to reduce the risk of death. The appetite to do “whatever it takes” is not being applied simply to those who are truly at risk, but also to prevent any transmission to those who are not at much risk at all.
The estimated IFR is close to zero for children and younger adults but rises exponentially with age, reaching 0.4% at age 55, 1.3% at age 65, 4.5% at age 75, and 15% at age 85. We find that differences in the age structure of the population and the age-specific prevalence of COVID-19 explain 90% of the geographical variation in population IFR. Consequently, protecting vulnerable age groups could substantially reduce the incidence of mortality
https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.07.23.20160895v4.full.pdf
When you stand back from it, the reaction by many western governments’ approaches towards COVID-19 has the strong appearance of moral hazard. Australia and New Zealand’s leaders stand out in this regard, with a “safety at any cost” attitude and an attachment to our early “success”.
These are very hard narratives to escape from. However, we must recognise that these leaders will not need to pay the actual cost – the people will and are. They will be able to say, “we defeated the virus” and “we kept you safe”, even if that supposed safety is only temporary, illusory and at enormous cost.
Are we being successful; by what standard?
People will generally preference what they see around them as being right and normal, looking towards the data that fits that picture and selecting data from examples of worse outcomes as the supposed alternative (everyone does this, so this isn't a claim against proponents of the current strategy). Australian’s undoubtedly have a narrative of success that is quite different to other countries around the world, but is it the best one? Could it be better?
It is very hard for one individual to attempt to process these questions and there is scant government information or resources being put into answering the question or exploring possible alternative approaches (there currently appears to be no political incentive to do so). To try and break outside of normal mode of thinking, let us keep it simple and start a discussion using a couple of overseas observations to guide us. Assume the following:
What are a couple of experiences we could draw on?
Both countries have ongoing community transmission and will need to “live with the virus”.
If Australia did “as poorly’ as the USA in our thought experiment, we would have approximately 14,000 deaths to-date. Much higher than our current deaths and about 9% of the deaths we would expect in a typical calendar year. Would mortality double over the subsequent six months? Likely not given current trends.
If we did “as well as” Japan, then we would have only 258 deaths.
So clearly, we already know there are alternative strategies, and we can have reasonable expectations of what the outcomes might be under a community transmission scenario. Of course, there is no reason that Australia would need to go down the USA path. Why not learn from the Japanese path? Why are they able to the protect aged-care, and yet we assume that we cannot? Why are they able to accept community transmission, and yet we cannot?
These are the questions we (and the media) should be asking of our leaders to answer. Instead, to date, many have largely bought into a narrative which essentially says ours is the best strategy and we must wait for a vaccine.
You have just got to have faith…
So, back to the vaccine. The narrative we are all working towards says that it will be “all good” once the vaccine arrives. Let us assume it is going to be here and ready to deploy in the first half of next year (I have a charity bet going with u/smileedude on this). All good right?
Except, it is not particularly likely that a vaccine, including our leading candidate vaccine (the Oxford vaccine), will confer sterilising immunity or full protective immunity for the population. It is more likely we see something like the following:
So, then reflect. By that point been locked down and isolated for 12 months+. What happens when we re-open and COVID-19, influenza, and other communicable diseases, reach the elderly and at-risk populations? What level of mortality is acceptable in that scenario? Surely, we will need to take protective measures to maintain our goal on minimal excess mortality knowing that communicable disease will continue to circulate?
So, why aren’t we taking those steps now instead of putting all our hopes into a silver bullet? It seems that the political calculation is that we will not care about the consequences by that point.
Next time; cost versus benefit
I would like to continue this post with another that explores the costs of our strategy and how this compares to potential benefits.
… but I will have to leave that to next time.
submitted by HomerQuotingHomer to CoronavirusDownunder [link] [comments]


2020.09.02 10:36 chrisbigmoney Unhappy but determined to complete my first year as an ALT

Hey all. I’m an American living and working in Japan for a year as a first year Assistant Language Teacher teaching English to elementary school students. I’m very thankful to be living in Japan in comparison to what’s happening in the USA with covid but life here is quite isolating being placed in the countryside of Hyogo and not speaking Japanese. I came here to Japan after becoming clinically depressed at an office job in the USA and I needed a drastic change in my life such as moving to a foreign country. Often my daily routine is I go to school, workout at my local gym (a whole other topic to post about) and then I play video games with the 3 or so hours I have left before I go to bed. Occasionally I’ll travel around Japan solo but a lot of times I stay in at home where I live alone in a LeoPalace in the means to saving money on a meager English teaching salary.
At school, I’m a T2 in all of my classes with the exception of 1st and 2nd grade where I’m given more control to run the class at the discretion of the JTE. The job has become a rinse and repeat of read English and be genki (or at least act the part). I do no advance lesson preparations before classes, I simply just follow the JTE instructions and read, the teachers use the digitized textbook materials to guide their classes. In elementary school the JTEs aren’t required to have an English teaching license so I’m basically paired with JTEs who know as much English as the kids do, and I can tell the majority of them don’t give a damn about English. They’re basically told to teach English and I’ve even had some scary meetings with some of them including a meeting with my 3 people from my dispatch company, the BOE, myself, Kocho-sensei, Kyoto-sensei, and my 4 homeroom teachers all at once when I first started. I have developed a groove with the classes and I can understand enough Japanese in class to understand what the teacher is asking me to do but there is a steep language barrier between myself, the students and the teachers. Basically most of my teachers stopped talking to me altogether, and the students are afraid of talking to me especially in the school I had the large meeting at that I described. I’m not around any English speaking people whatsoever which also makes it tough. I get angry hearing about other people’s placements in urban areas where there are some English speakers around. I have also refused to transfer my international drivers permit into a Japanese drivers license. My supervisor called me a few months ago but at the time I was unable to articulate my problems like what I’m writing on this post. I really want to stop being a bitter gaijin, which is why I’m writing this post. I fell in love with the ideas of Japan from an outsider’s perspective and now I’m struggling to maintain that interest due to the experiences I’m writing about here.
Someone motivate me to continue. I am on a lease where I live here and I don’t think asking for a transfer is an option or if there really is any alternatives for me. I want to finish my assignment though, it’s a personal goal of mine even if my views of Japan have changed due to my own personal inadequacies. I struggle to get along with the teachers in my area around me and as a result I’ve become lonely as a result of being burned out every day after work and not wanting to talk to people at the end of the day. Is there any kind of active support groups or people in my situation that actively support or have meetups with other foreigners struggling with depression or culture shock? I have become demotivated with studying Japanese and now I am deciding that I will most likely go home at the end of my assignment next year in March 2021 granted I make it that far. Is going back to America really a good idea? A chief concern I have is not being able to find a job when I go back and where exactly I would live.
I have been using dating apps to try to meet people however I’ve only been able to go on dates when I go on a trip to the city, never in my own home area. Long story short I got into a long conversation with a guy on Tinder whom I thought I genuinely connected with. We talked every day on the app for over a month and we never exchanged any social media or phone contact info. I regret not doing that but at the same time I also believe in not giving out my social media contact info until I meet them in person. I have a break coming up in a few weeks at school where I was going to travel to go visit him but now those plans are cancelled. I discovered right before lunchtime today that I’ve been unmatched. Eating school lunch was pretty difficult but I had to soldier on and now I’m here posting, an hour after discovering and right before my 6th grade English class.
I guess the general advice would be to move on. Does anyone here have any advice on dating in a foreign country in a rural area? Any advice on what I should do for the time I have left in Japan? I really think I’m focusing too much on dating and I wish I lived near other English teachers or ALTs I got along better with. Being a gay male is hard, especially in the countryside. My assignment ends in March 2021. I hope I’ve painted a good enough picture for you and I would greatly appreciate any constructive advice you would have. Thank you for reading.
submitted by chrisbigmoney to teachinginjapan [link] [comments]


2020.09.02 04:52 UnavailableUsername_ How can a non-japanese speakers that want to learn to draw anime-style art?: A comparison between japanese and english resources.

How can a non-japanese speakers that want to learn to draw anime-style art?
The first answer that would come to mind may be "It's art! You don't need to speak the language to draw in their style, silly!" however, this may be a wrong assumption.
I want to learn to draw and draw in anime style, so i collected a sizable amount of books on the topic, both in English and japanese...and the difference is abysmal.
I am going to use examples from multiple japanese books.
Japanese resources go to EXTREME DETAIL to convey how everything is drawn, even a single character emotion is heavily scrutinized (like the image shows) including the reasoning to do so.
In comparison the english counterparts are just sad to look at.
Japanese resources have made anime drawing down to a science, and that's no exaggeration:
Meanwhile...the english counterparts on drawing anime...are just bad attempts at drawing. Forget about specialized books like the ones mentioned existing, they can't even get the basics right.
While the mentioned english books examples are a little dated, newer ones have the same problem. Even picking an english anime drawing book published in 2020 (this year!) the drawings look bad...the hair, eyes, leg proportions...all look wrong.
The "how to draw manga" series guide is fairly popular, however it was not only NOT fully translated, it's also quite dated. It teaches art style with resources of the 80's, that's resources from 40 years ago. If you loved the 80's that's great...but if want to draw more modern anime...you are out of luck.
Plus, the techniques may be outdated since they do not speak of digital style.
TL;DR: I want to learn to draw and draw in anime style, specifically digitally in a tablet so i can color too...but i am lost as to where to begin without knowing how to read japanese. English resources are objectively inferior or decades outdated compared to the extremely in-depth japanese resources. Also, the lack of digital resources to paint/share anime in english.
submitted by UnavailableUsername_ to AnimeSketch [link] [comments]


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