By: Justin Hopkins
And here we are, at our first stop on our road to Wrestlemania, the Elimination Chamber. Which kind of shows how Bi-Polar WWE’s Booking truly is. Some of the bad is not their fault, while others is absolutely on them. Not saying that it is all bad. What they are doing right is exciting and the wrestling, at the very least, should be awesome and if you couldn’t tell with the thumbnail, super excited for one match in particularly. So, lets dive in and try to predict this whopping four.. maybe five match card.
UNITED STATES CHAMPIONSHIP – RIDDLE VS KEITH LEE(?) VS BOBBY LASHLEY(C)
Alright, so according to the rumor mill and announce team on Raw, Keith was injured and position in the match may be up in the air. Personally. think it is a work and he will be fine. Certainly hoping so, otherwise we are looking at another match between Riddle and Bobby and getting tired of the feud between Riddle and the Hurt Business. They are fully capable of having feuds with others and the sad part is, think this is going to continue. Think they are looking to change it up though, and by that, I mean Lashley will be dropping his title to one Riddle and have him chase to Wrestlemania.
Winner and new United States Champion – Riddle
RAW’S WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP – ASUKA (C) VS ??? (LACEY EVANS)
Before I get to the prediction, I am very happy for Lacey Evans and her family on the pregnancy’s and hope for nothing but the best.
What am I suppose to say about this? They knew Monday that Lacey was Pregnant and instead of trying to get Asuka another opponent, they ran some stupid story that implied that Ric is the baby Daddy. Asuka is one of the best wrestlers on the roster. She gives great to memorable matches and her promos are gleaming with passion. When lockdown was happening and WWE was scrambling trying to figure out how to do this, she was paving the way and making the shows so much better and is thanked with no story. This was a title match based around Charlotte. Asuka hasn’t had her own story since she feuded with Sasha and Bayley. Which in a way, was more their story than hers. Some theories for replacement, if they don’t just drop it entirely. Rhea Ripley, which I would love to see happen, with a proper story leading to Wrestlemania. Rhea and Asuka could legit put on a five star match that would threaten to steal the show, or Charlotte and have her take the title to defend it against Rhea and get Rhea her win back. Which is only happening because they have to fix the damage they made last year when Charlotte beat Rhea. It is amazing how they have this caliber of talent and can’t book a show.
Winner – They drop the match and bring Rhea up tomorrow and start booking for a ONE-ON-ONE match between Rhea and Asuka at Mania.
WWE CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH – KOFI KINGSTON VS JEFF HARDY VS AJ STYLES VS RANDY ORTON VS SHEAMUS VS DREW MCINTYRE(C)
Alright, back to happier things. I can’t understand the reason behind the idea of Drew dropping the belt to win it back in front of the crowd at Wrestlemania. It get that it is side, but he’ll get the pop he deserves arriving as Champion and it will be just as glorious instead of trying to manufacture the moment. This match should be great. Probably see a lot of story threads occurring. Kofi losing because of Retribution and can see Orton being taken out by The Fiend. I think he will leave the pod and be instantly abducted somewhere else and Drew picking up the victory and setting up Edge to pick him for Mania and more on why later.
Winner and still WWE Champion- Drew McIntyre
ELIMINATION CHAMBER WHERE THE WINNER GETS A SHOT AT THE UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP – KING CORBIN VS SAMI ZAYN VS DANIEL BRYAN VS JEY USO VS KEVIN OWENS VS CESARO
This match is going to be incredible. These six guys are going to destroy one another in what is just going to be an amazing match where you can make a case for each of them to win this match, but.. I can’t go against it. For the first time in so long. Cesaro is finally, at long last getting his push, that he has worked so hard for, and I am fully behind it. Owens has had multiple shots. Daniel Bryan can get a title match at any time. Jey’s redemption is still cooking, and it won’t be heel vs heel, but could easily be way to turn Sami face which would be nice, but no. It’s time for the Cesaro Section to stand up and Cesaro takes this match.
Winner – Cesaro
UNVIERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP CESARO VS ROMAN REIGNS
Cesaro isn’t going to win this. Got to be realistic, but think about this. Cesaro wins a grueling Chamber Match, gets beaten down by Jey as Roman makes his way down, but Cesaro gets one big shot in before losing, and we are off from here. Cesaro making a big push to become number one contender at Fast Lane to take on Roman at Mania. Just think about the crowd reaction to finally seeing someone they have been wanting to see have his moment. Drew vs Edge would be stellar, but this could be a great match for someone who has been there all along, and seeds can be planted here.
Winner and still Universal Champion – Roman Reigns
As always, I hope you enjoyed and….
Thank You For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
I had to take an extended break from the B Movie Sunday Reviews. After a string of movies that were absolutely atrocious and not worth taking about. Had to go back to a well that never seems to do wrong by me, a campy shark movie. There is an overabundance of them top pick from and so rarely fail to entertain. Now, this was not my original choice. Was going for another shark movie, but when I saw the title Swamp Shark, knew it was for me. Let’s dive in and see if this managed to break a bit of a bad streak shall we.
Starting with a group of people sitting near a river getting drunk and having a good time when the sheriff arrived. Kind of scaring them off. Some drove away and the others getting on a boat and sailing away. Which was a ploy by the Sheriff to clear the area. Bringing in a shipment of some kind, which arrives in a water tanker. Bucking hard enough to break the entire tank free of the truck and killing someone as it rolled into the river and a shark gets out. Sheriff telling the guy he was meeting to keep it to himself and we jump to a restaurant called The Gator Shed, with a pen outside alligators for people to see and learn about. Place run by the Broussard Family. Jason ” Swamp Thing” Broussard, his Sister Jackie and teen sister Krystal. Along with Martin and Rachael’s Tyler. While Rachael is talking to a mystery guy who has been coming in a lot as of late, a drunken Jackson makes a scene and while Jason is throwing him out, punches him in the face and gets arrested by a Sheriff who has been nagging Rachael for dinner and she uses that to get Jason out of trouble without actually agreeing to anything. Later that night Jackson comes back, looking to do something to the gators to get even, but freezes up when he spots the shark fin. Hitting the dock and knocking him into the water and devours him before breaking into the Alligator pen and starting to eat them. In all the chaos, Rachael wakes up and grabs her gun, racing out in time to see the fin. Took a shot but it swam away. While they were surveying the damage, Tyler ridiculing her for thinking it was a shark when the Sheriff shows up. Got a call last night over the gunshot and an officer was already searching the river and finds Jackson’s hat and then his arm. He wants to take Jason in but Jason tells him to come back with a warrant. before leaving to answer a call, says he plans on talking to the Judge and having the shut down. Fueling them to go on the offensive and with the help of the tracking chips from the gators, go to hunt down what did this and save their restaurant.
The story was pretty paint by the numbers. The shark wasn’t a normal shark but one from the depths of the ocean so is stronger because of it. Which is why he can plow through everything and such, but it was a rather fun ride. Most of the characters were fun and felt like a real family. Their love of the restaurant and believed they would fight to keep this going. Had some fun moments, good kills and a fantastic scene with a rope choke to help this movie stand out a bit.
I did like the design of the CGI Shark. Being from the depth allowed some freedom to design a different looking shark, and they came up with a brown scale looking design. Know that some are turned off by CGI but doesn’t bother me. I’m actually kind of glad they gave the shark a reason for being able to do what he did. Sure it is weak and out there, but it’s kind of better than just shrugging their shoulders.
There was one scene in particularly that I want to talk about and it was with the Life Ring Buoy. The guy fell in and they threw a buoy to get him out quick. Attached to a rope, and when the shark ate him and the raft and swam away. He pulled the rope hard and caught Sarah, Natacha Itzel, around the throat. Managed to cut her free, but did a fair amount of damage and she sold it so well. Before that, I wanted everyone on the boat to die they were that annoying, but she sold that injury so well, that she shifted my opinion and wanted her to live and speaks volumes for how good she was in that moment.
It’s kind of a shame we didn’t get enough of Jason Rogel’s Martin and Jeff Chase’s Jason ” Swamp Thing” Broussard. They were so much fun in general, but when they were working together toward the end was great stuff. Jeff chase was generally especially was a fun character. Just seemed believable character who fits perfectly in the role. While Kristy Swanson did a good job as Rachael.
Alright, on to the negatives. We really didn’t need the love angles going on here. Rachael had love interests everywhere. From the Sheriff, Detective Brycen and her Boyfriend Tyler and honestly, Tyler could either be dropped or needed to be toned way, way down, because he becomes obnoxious right away and keeps going and that goes to the party going teens. Outside of Natascha they were just so bad. It wasn’t even a paint by the numbers group we see in these movies. Didn’t even want them to die, just off my screen.
While I wouldn’t rank Swamp Shark to high up on the list of B Movie Shark Films, it was still a fun movie to watch. Perfect kind of movie to kick back and have some good laughs too and when it comes to it with these movies, that is all I ask from it.
As always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
It is a shame that it has taken me this long to get around to this classic. Granted my ability to stick to a schedule is dodgy at best but still, They Live probably should have been higher up on the to do list. I grew up with this movie, even before I was a fan of the movies. Due to me being a wrestling nerd and was sold when I heard it stared Roddy Rowdy Piper, and it has remained a movie I continue to go back to, but lets dive in shall we. Discuss the good, the bad and the in between.
The movie kicks off with a man with no name (Nada) arriving to the city in search of a job. Having lost his previous one in Denver. His first day he ended up striking out at Job Placement, but on the second day he lands a job at a construction sight. Where he is spotted by a man named Frank who tells him about a Homeless camp and invites him to come along. after introducing him to Gill and showing him around, they get to talking over a meal and we learn a little bit about Frank. Has a family back home in Detroit and had to come due to the Steel Mills closing down, which left him angry over it. How badly the workers were treated and the overall harshness of life. While Nada still believes in the dream. Works hard and plays by the rules and wait for his chance. Later that night, we see a TV Program a group of people are watching is interrupted by what the one calls a hacker. Warning the people of signals coming through the transmissions and that they are out there and only safe as long as they are hidden. As that is going on, Nada spots the Preacher from the day before mouthing along to it. When the feed cuts out, Gill runs up to the Preacher and drags him to the church across the street. Getting into a visible argument with him. Next time another hack, which was much shorter and Gill again runs off to the Church, with Nada following along. Finding a make shift Lab, a lot of cardboard boxes and Choir noises are actually just a radio. Can hear bits and pieces of a conversation but is caught by the Preacher who tries to warn him, but he is quick to leaves. Seeing a suspicious helicopter flying overhead, which draws them out of the church as well, but leaves as quickly as it arrived. Collecting a pair of binoculars from one of the people at the camp and starts watching them. Much to the chagrin of Frank, who wants nothing to do with this. Not wanting to risk his job and warns Nada to do the same. That night, and still watching, the helicopter returned, with a full police unit, SWAT Team and bulldozer. Overwhelming the Church and Homeless Camp. Brutalizing anyone they could catch, including the Preacher. Nada barely makes it out. Taking shelter in a nearby house with a few others. The next morning he goes back and gets a box from the church, and to his confusion, finds it filled with black sunglasses. Throwing all but one in the trash, putting it on when he hit the street/. To find everything turning black and white. Billboards and signs saying things such as, obey, marry and reproduce and consume, but worse was when he saw and alien disguised as a human and that is where I will leave it for now.
I loved the story of they told so much. Entwining the dangers of Capitalism with aliens. Showing how distracted people are to real issues with consumer goods and the hardships of when they lose everything and are on there on. No one helping and feeling lost and forgotten, despite them trying their hardest and the temptation of betraying everything to avoid that faith vs testing who you really are, and all told so well through the eyes of Nada. A character told so well, that it can go over your head on first viewing that they never give his name, which to me, is amazing feat. Again, speaks on the world around him. Frank gives a diatribe about his problems and Holly tries to trick him later, but no one ever asks for his name.
The action and fight scenes were great. There wasn’t much in the way of gore and the fire fights were fast paced. Showing the importance of them moving quicks and of course, helping differentiate it from the fight between Nada and Frank. Over him trying to get Frank to wear the glasses and Frank wanting none of this, which kickstarts a six minute street fight which was awesome. There was nothing flashy about it. Just two guys trading punches and throwing each other around in an alley. Can see how much time Roddy and Keith David put into making the most brutal looking fight they could and it works perfectly.
Roddy “Rowdy” Piper was brilliant as Nada. Bringing a lot of his natural charisma and charm to the character. Quick witted to throw out a one liner, not all of them stuck, but majority are fantastic. Brought a gritty realism with him. Makes you feel bad for him. A guy willing to take any job and do his best and clinging on to the belief that if he stays the track, it’ll get better. Playing so well off of Keith David. A character who lives in reality. Wanting to keep his head down and not be noticed, despite the anger he has over his situation. George ” Buck” Flowers, incredible as support. Same with Peter Jason and massive praise to Jason Imada, who from what I have read about, played most of the Aliens.
I don’t really have a lot of bad things to say. Some of the jokes didn’t quite stick and Meg Foster came across as a bit to much dead pan for my liking, but none of which broke my immersion all that much so call it in between. I am stretching a lot here, this movie is fantastic is tremendous. Memorable characters, a story that could drop today and still be just a relevant and quotable as they come. If you haven’t seen it make it a must watch as it has [earned it’s title as moniker as a classic. Final Grade S
As always, I hope you enjoyed and….
Thank You For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
It is the most magical time of the year. Better than any holidays or celebrations or even Wrestlemania itself, it’s the Royal Rumble. That greatest stipulation match. Pitting thirty wrestlers against one another and anything and everything can happen. From surprise entrances to heartbreaking eliminations. Circus like performances to stave off eliminations, all in the hope to be the one to point at the Wrestlemania sign, and this year is especially difficult to predict. Doing such a good job building a several potential winners in both Rumbles and to a point, that is both exciting and terrifying. With some really exciting choices, yet the building sense of grief of them picking someone who could royally torpedo the entire Road To Wrestlemania before it even begins. So, lets dive in and try to predict the Royal Rumble Card shall we.
WOMEN’S TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP – Nia Jax and Shayna Bazler vs Asuka and Charlotte Flair
We will start with the one that doesn’t matter. They have put less than minimum effort to make these titles feel special. Asuka is double champion who has almost nothing to do and Nia Jax is a constant concern that she will injure her opponent, but I am still going to pick Nia and Shayna because putting the belts on Charlotte and Asuka was a mistake to begin with and maybe they book in a good story. This really should have gone with the Riott Squad.
Winners and new Women’s Tag Team Champions – Nia Jax and Shayna Bazler
SMACKDOWN’S WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP – Carmella vs Sasha Banks
This has been a fun little rivalry, and we got to see Reginald show off a bit of his Circus roots and something small for Sasha to do following her rivalry with Bayley and Carmella is a lot better than most people give her credit for. I do expect Sasha to retain her belt in what should be a pretty solid match.
Winner and still Women’s Champion – Sasha Banks
WWE CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH – GOLDBERG VS DREW MCINTYRE
Drew… For the love of everything, Drew.
Winner and still WWE Champion – Drew McIntyre ( Seriously, do no put the belt on Goldberg.)
UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP – KEVIN OWENS VS ROMAN REIGNS
I would love to see Kevin win this one. he has been so good on the build up to this and deserves another run with the belt, but I don’t see it happening here. Not at the expense of Roman Reigns, who has saved himself from the never ending void of terrible booking and made himself WWE’s biggest villains. I expect these two to just kill one another and when it seems that they will both be counted out, a returning Jimmy will hold Roman up on his feet. Making the family whole.
Winner and still Universal Champion – Roman Reigns
WOMEN’S ROYAL RUMBLE
This one I think is going to be more tricky to predict. Tend to pull from the legend and alum pool to fill out the numbers. It’ll probably kick off the show. I think that Bianca will be the Ironwoman of the match and will be the one to inevitably be the one to knock out the “Monster” Nia Jax, but will be knocked out by Bayley and while she is celebrating, will be eliminated by Charlotte. It’ll come down to Charlotte, Rhea, Shayna and Raquel Gonzales, with Rhea waling away the winner.
Winner – Rhea Ripley
MEN’S ROYAL RUMBLE
This can be a lot of fun and completely nightmare fuel and the fact they can control the crowd reaction with a button is what makes this scary. Would love to see Randy get number one, upset by the early entry and get even more angry when number two is Edge, but this will go out the window when they reveal the number one and two are announced on Backstage on Saturday. I expect this to be a lot of fun and wouldn’t mind seeing Brock come back for it, but could this be the year. The year I never thought would come. the year they finally give the Swiss Superman the recognition that has been long overdue. May not be the smart choice, but I have to believe that this will be the year of Cesaro.
Winner – Cesaro
While WWE has been a wild ride of some massive highest and ugly lows. Can put it all aside, for the best PPV on the calendar and I can’t wait to see what happens at this year’s Royal Rumble. As always, I hope you enjoyed and….
Thanks For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
This season actually caught me off guard. Just everything going on, missed it till it debuted, which is good thing actually. Avoided any potential spoilers and trailers, which I normally despise anyways. They tend to give away to much information, and with a show like Disenchantment, that I have thoroughly enjoyed since the debut in 2018. Going in blind is the best way to go in my eyes. and now that I have, lets dive in an discuss the newest chapter in Disenchantments.
The season starts where we left off. with Bean, Luci, and Elfo at the bottom of the pit, surrounded by creatures being lead by her Mother, Dagmar, who claims that she doesn’t have anything diabolical planned and wants to start over. Bean isn’t buying it, but has to play along for the time. Meanwhile, back in Dreamland, believing she is dead, and Zog on his deathbed. Odval and Archdiocese, are using Derek to flip the Kingdom into what they want it to be, through Derek who is just doing what they wanted. Zog , isn’t dying though. Just going to give himself up to Pendergrast, who can’t kill him. Agrees to help him escape in a coffin, but Pendergrast is killed by the Archdruidess and buries Zog alive. While, Bean discovers that Dagmar is lying to her. Is captured trying to escape and locked away with Leavo. They make it out, without Leavo and she tries to tick the Trogs by dressing like Dagmar and almost gets away with it, but Zog who was incidentally saved by the burrowing Trogs. Before they get their hands on them, they run in front of crystals and is uncovered to be their Saviors. Forcing Dagmar to retreat and they got out. Returning to Dreamland, where Zog was reinstalled as the King, but he is slowly losing his mind due to his time spent buried alive. Doesn’t even remember what Odval and the Archdruidess did to him, but Tiabeanie has some suspicions, which are heightened by finding Pendergrast’s body. Finds a gun in Ordval’s office, but at the wedding, The Archdruidess is ousted as the murderer, and escapes. Leaving Bean and Elfo to chase her down. Leaving Luci to stay behind to take care of Zog, and where I will leave it for now.
This show just keeps getting better. The story moves quick and keeps you hooked throughout. Building up questions and suspense throughout. What is with the Secret Society, Family Curse, The Archdruidess and Steamland the constant threat that is Dagmar, while creatively bringing back things from the past, like Big Joe and The Ogres from the first episode and their grudge with Elfo. Weaving jokes throughout that had me laughing from the jump, with episodes packed with emotions, like you would come to find from a Groening project and all done perfectly.
The characters are still just a blast. Whether, it’s going back and forth with her Mom, opening up with Mora or trying to be there for her Dad and Dreamland, Tia remains the best part of the show, which is impressive with the likes of Luci around. Love seeing Bean continue to grow as a character while maintaining what makes her fun. Way she takes charge and takes on the world head on, but when the pressure is on, still suffers from Self-Doubt. Still seeking her place in the world. What started out as amusing descent into madness with Zog turns sad as it becomes clear that he isn’t just going to shake it off.
They got so many questions and situations building almost have to treat them as a topic of their own and we got to start with Dagmar, who is turning into a fantastic antagonist. The end of bringing Bean to be married to what appears to be a demon may have come across as a massive shock, but she mentioned a Demon Debt that was overdue in Season two’s opener. Always feels like a legit threat when she appears and wonder if she is hoping from one prophecy to another or if she keeps circling back to the same one and keeps manipulating Bean back to where she needs her to be, in a long con? What happened in Dreamland and the elves and the curse on the family? Everything about Odval and we still haven’t learned who is Elfo’s Mom, but have a feeling by the end that we are about to find out and got Luci in heaven and Bean being able to utilize magic and who is the broom woman? It seems like a lot, but they have done a great job in building up all of them and am in anticipation of where they are going.
The voice acting is incredible as always. Abbi Jacobson is fantastic as Bean and could listen to her and Sharon Horgan’s Dagmar argue with each other for an entire season and not get tired of it. Meredith Hagner was a fun addition of Mora and hope that she comes back at some point. Just everyone involved though, knocks it out of the park. You got Nat Faxon and Eric Andre who know there characters so well and capture them so well. You got legends in the form of Billy West, John DiMaggio, Maurice LaMarche and the Queen Tress MacNeille and so many others all just did great work. Round of applause to everyone involved.
I don’t really have much in the way of negative things to say. My complaints from season 2 were jokes that went to long and Elfo, but neither of them were problems here. Jokes were great and Elfo was fun and character had a lot of depth here. Small complaints might be that it would have been nice to see a bit of a good ending, since it’s the third bad ending for the trio and wouldn’t have complained about something being answered, but it definitely got me hooked for a fourth season.
This is getting an A Plus from me. This was a great addition to a what has been an overall great show and one that I could easily recommend to anyone. Just checks all the boxes for a show I want and can’t ask for anything more.
As always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
I never really got into Open World games. Having the tendency to go toward more linear style games or real loose open world ones. It wasn’t until a year or two ago when I started going back and playing some open world ones and games like Fallout 3 or New Vegas and even then stayed away from 4. Most of the people I knew tended to talk down on it and that kept me away until my tenth run through of New Vegas when I just got bored enough to give it a go, but I went into it with a little different. Normally, I jump into a world and just make random decisions based of off spur of the moment thoughts. Never really embracing the RPG aspect of the game. Going into Fallout 4, a game I had very little knowledge of, decided to do so, by playing as the blue Sim in so, so many thumbnails. Why, a few reasons actually. Having using Fionna on the page for nearly 2 years and thought it might be interesting to put a little bit of character for Fi on the page. Things are slow and like doing different things from time-to-time. Plus, can do a proper discussion on what seems to be a mixed reviewed game in the process. So, with that said, lets dive in shall we.
The game started like all games do. Designing the character to be as close to Fionna, before the bombs started dropping and getting Frozen, seeing Shaun being Kidnapped and let loose on the world. Being pointed toward Concord and ran into everyone’s favorite, Preston Garvey and helped them to Sanctuary. Helping rebuild her hometown and doing settlement runs during which she is distracted by The Brotherhood Of Steel. Helped them get their tech back, but after hearing them out, knew she wasn’t helping them anymore. Saying goodbye and went back helping with Settlements. Getting an offer about the Castle, but after hearing about the Castle, knew she didn’t have the ammo to deal and held off and headed toward Diamond City. Where she met her first companion, that wasn’t Dogmeat, Piper. Amused and inspired by her plight and happy to take her along. Saving Valentine and started on the road to take out Kellogg. Whom she eliminated with glee and went on a wild adventure through his memories which she largely ignored, he did kidnap her baby, didn’t care for his sob story. Getting the mission Glowing Sea, but didn’t go right away. Instead she opted to find the Railroad everyone talked about. Helping them in their missions and side missions to become besties with the companions that she met. Exchanging Piper for Cait. Cait for Valentine. Was having a blast during the Silver Shroud Missions when disaster struck and she couldn’t save Kent. With a heavy heart and tears in her eyes, Fionna hung up the costume and turned her focus to the Glowing Sea. Mixture of fighting and running till she found Virgil. Agreeing to do what he wanted and after her time spent in the Railroad, gladly hunted down the Courier, but before we could make the Relay, She turns her ire to the Mechanist. The robots are chewing through the .50 caliber bullets and keep attacking her settlements. What should have been an easy fight turned into a nightmare thanks to a Bethesda Bug and took way to long, but with the robots nullified, time to infiltrate the Institute and learned the shocking revel that Shaun became Father. Which put her on edge, but Fionna played nice. Working both sides, being nice and meeting Patriot. Unsure of what she should do. Taking a minute to go clean up Far Harbor and hearing of Raiders in Nuka Cola, which she painstakingly eliminated all of them, cause if anyone was going to be in charge of a Theme Park, it was going to be her and wasn’t sharing with Raiders. Back in the commonwealth, she ended up in Vault 81 and became friends with Curie and made up her mind, she would back the Railroad and destroy the Institute. She played nice, despite her murderous urge to kill Shaun. Getting things in line, removed the Brotherhood and it was finally time, but first, she went back to Sanctuary and swapped Currie for Piper. Someone who fought to expose the Institute. Only seemed right to have her for the end. When the Infiltration began, made sure to send out the alert to clear out the innocent, shot Shaun on the way by and set up the bomb, sending the Institute up in a fiery explosion. There wasn’t much left in the post, did most of the Missions and Settlement builds during breaks from the main story. Only major one was ruining the experiments of Vault 88. After that, it was time to sit back, with Piper and Dogmeat. Discuss what could happen in the new world. The potential team of Minutemen and Railroad. Synth knowledge of their time in the Institute can make new tech and use their knowledge to build a whole new world with everyone prospering.
Why the Railroad
Before we get into my thoughts on the game, figured I would start with the big question, Why the Railroad? Really had to think about how Fionna acts and operates along with the lore me and a friend of mine have created behind her and.. was pretty difficult to place Fionna. Fi is very split in her personalities. Wants everyone to have a good time. Doesn’t care for labels, or genders or anything. If you can think and have emotions and try your best. She considers you a friend and willing to share anything to make the world better, but cross her and has no problem running through you. When she sees something she wants, will continue to circle back to it until it is hers and Proud Parent of many of her own. So, 4 factions, would help the Minutemen, for desire to help and dream of them building statues in her honor when she leaves, but wouldn’t think they got the might to hold onto the Commonwealth. Wouldn’t tolerate the Brotherhood hording tech that can help, nor take an order from Maxson. Leaving the Railroad and The Institute and it was a challenge. The Railroad do fight for a good cause that no one else seem to do, while giving her the feeling that she is a secret agent fighting against the Big Evil, but she would be impressed by what her Son had created and want to support him for being her child despite the evil that he created. Would be torn between the two until she realized all the Synths are theoretically hers. Being made by Shaun’s DNA which is her own. Her Friends, Valentine and Curie and so many other depending on Fi to make the choice. Which is why I believe Fionna would side with The Railroad. With the Institute gone, they could unite with the Minutemen and build from there.
Know I have talked a lot, so I will make this quick. I had a blast playing Fallout 4. It was different then most Fallout Games, and I get the reason why my friends didn’t like it, but pretty sure that is what I liked about it. Getting to build up world in the way you choose. Whether they are forced to serve the greater good of the Brotherhood or Raiders of Nuka Cola or just rebuilding the new world. Not to mention gave a reason to the junk we picked up, which was so nice. Companions were so much fun. Liked that you had to make them your friend before they would tell you their stories instead of just passing things that triggered it. Sure some could cause you to act in ways you aren’t playing like, but you don’t have to bring them along. Fi didn’t deal with X1 and Sent Strong to Red Rocket early. Leaving them for future gameplay. The side quests for Cait and Valentine felt genuinely awarding when you helped them and was amusing seeing Currie learn about the world and becoming a Synth. Loved the DLCs for Nuka Cola and Far Harbor. Both giving a lot of fun missions and ways to break up the Main Story. Would love to say that about the Mechanist, but the Bethesda Bug really made that part a nightmare. Even after finishing, eagerly restarted as someone new, because I felt like there was so much left to do.
Before I finish off, want to give credit to the excellent Mods that I used throughout my playthrough and the hard workers behind them. Aloots’ Home Plate, Demon Hunter Female Armor by NCRRanger5x, Everyone’s Best Friend by Valdacil, Lots more female Hairstyles, by Recluse, Steampunk Gunslinger Outfits CBBE and Bodyslide by Elianora and Nuka Tech Rad Bans which I unfortunately couldn’t re find to give credit for, but found them all on Nexus Mods. Thank you to everyone who made these awesome mods.
This was much more weird then normal. Promise the normal reviews to come. To those who did make it through, I hope you enjoyed and as always…
Thank You For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
My recent Resident Evil kick has probably become a problem. With it being December and looking back and playing Resident Evil 2 and 3 and looking forward to Village. When I remembered I haven’t played Code Veronica yet. Made especially more appalling since I downloaded the game a few months ago and just haven’t sat down and played it yet. Claire is my favorite character in the world of Resident Evil, have no idea why I held off. May not know what happened going in, but she is on the cover. So, riding the wave I have been on for the series, figured now was the time to finally play and share my thoughts not only on it, but where I stand on the whole remake thing. So, lets dive right in shall we.
The game kicks open with a hood being pulled off Claire’s head and being struck down into a cell by the butt of a gun. Flashing back, seeing her racing through an Umbrella site in Paris. Bullets flying and high paced. Gets confronted, looking like she was outnumbered by ends up firing into gas canisters and taking them all down, but one guy comes up from behind and she is out of ammo. Coming too in her cell to the sound of explosions. The base they are holding her is under attack and the guard is injured and lets her go. Under the impression she won’t make it out alive regardless. Leaving him and the dead begin to rise from the ground and chase us off into another cut scene where we meet Steve, a prisoner who runs off, believing we would only slow him down. After checking out the barracks we make our way forward to a Palace, belonging to the Ashfords, Alfred and Alexia. After a bit of exploring. we run into Alfred who after trying to shot us, blaming us for the attack and going to enjoy hunting us. Before we can leave the Palace we have to go back in and save Steve, who wont give us the guns, unless he gets automatic ones in return, cause he is a nightmare, but we move along any. Opening up more areas, in the form of the Training facility and Underwater area. Beginning to bounce around all the areas, trying to get access to the plane and escape. Encountering the Bandersnatches after walking into a trap from Alfred and even more terrifying encounter with Albert Wesker, the man who was responsible for the attack on the base. Who after ragdolling Claire around, leaves after being called away. Leaving us to continue trying to finish our tasks. When we finally gain access to the plane and putting the final touches on getting it ready, we are confronted by a tyrant. Who not only fights us on the ground, but ends up on the plane and we have to get him thrown out of it. Only for the plane to be hijacked and flown Rerouted to Antarctica Base and we again, start our search for an escape. Steve finds a base seven miles away and all we got to do is use the drilling devise to punch through a wall, but Steve of course, screws it up and Claire has to fix it. Dealing with Alfred again, but we need to fight an even more dangerous Tyrant, Nosferatu. Who hit hard and poison us and the fight was a challenging one, but we finally took him down. Looked like we were finally free, but we see Alfred, holding on just long enough to unleash his Sister, Alexia, who easily flips our escape vehicle and knocks us out. Then we jump to see Chris arriving at the base we were at at the start, and we start again as Chris this time and that is where I will leave it for now.
Now, there is a lot to unpack and praise about this game and I am going to start with the monsters. The Bandersnatches were a great addition to the games. Being both a scary and imposing, but felt like legit threats that you had to account for. Not only being able to attack you from afar with their stretchy arm, but use the same arm to move from one floor to the next making it a challenge to runaway from and tended to have to deal with them instead of just run. Loved Alexia’s transformation into a giant flying bug monster at the end. Nosferatu is hands down the best in the game and ranks high on the list with Nemeses and Mr. X as best of the series. Monster wise, Code Veronica X delivers in spade.
The inclusion of Albert Wesker was pulled off spectacularly. The cutscenes that he was apart of were the best, especially when he fights Alexia. Feeling every bit of a big boss fight of these two superpowered being going right after that left me wanting so much more then we got. Add on the scenes where he meets Claire and facing off with Chris for the first time, Wesker kind of steals the show a good bit of the time. Only scene that comes close to matching was the reunion of Chris and Claire.
Alright, lets talk about the story. The game starts off really good. Claire getting fast and hardcore opening, with her taking out everyone in her search of her Brother and loved going around the base and setting up the Ashford Siblings as the big bads. Had so many types of threats and dangers and puzzles were numerous. Making you think about your next several moves and where to go, because going the wrong way could cost both health and ammo which could be detrimental later, but things seemed to start going downhill about the time you get to Antarctica.
One, last thing before we get to the negatives, I loved Steve’s death. He is the first main protagonist, that I can remember, who does not make it out alive. It at gravitas to the universe that not everyone will make it out live and really, the heroes kind of lose in the fact that Wesker is not only left standing, but he walks away, with Steve’s body. Building suspense for where they would go from there. This is also the only good thing I can say about Steve, because…
I actually think I hate Steve. Between the amount of cringe dialogue he has. Fact he kept turning his guns side ways and just opening fire like an idiot. Every single time I saw him on the screen. Had to fight the urge to skip the cutscenes cause it was so bad and early Resident Evil had plenty of cringe but Steve was pinnacle and just the worst. I get where they were going with this character, love interest of Claire, with full on stupid romantic song and it misses the mark in every possible way.
Going into this games, we seen Claire hold her own and fight her way through Resident Evil 2. Setting her up as a powerful character who can hold her own against anything that comes her way. This game starts off with, Claire running through an Umbrella Lab, with Guards chasing her, Planes firing at her location and blowing up gas canisters. By the end, she is constantly shoved aside by Steve… BY STEVE. Then, when Chris is introduced, that is really the end of your time with Claire. Only get control of her long enough to see Steve mutate, tell her he loves her and dies. She doesn’t even get her revenge. She is suppose to care about his death. should at least be the one who gets revenge for him. That goes to Chris. We open the game with her. We should really be finishing the game with her.
The last of the negatives is the way they handle the item sharing situation between Claire and Chris. A little bit of a heads up or some other way to pass stuff off. Had to reset the Nosferatu fight, because I wasn’t expecting the switch and left Chris with nothing to work with. They really do punish new players. Most of which I didn’t mind. All for playing smart and not dumb, but in this aspect, a little bit of foreknowledge would have been a massive plus.
Code Veronica X does need a remake, but not as is. The story and playthrough is just not good. Would pass hard on it if that is how they go. Especially, after the Claire we go in Resident Evil 2 remake. She started down down Stage three Birken. You can’t have her getting pushed aside by Steve and if they are going to keep the love thing. Do it better. Just so bad here and let her get the final fight against Alexia. Instead of Chris, who never met Steve. Let Claire avenge him while Chris runs down Wekser and we can end with a Wesker vs Chris fight. That we actually get to play out instead of watch.
I know that I have been rampaging, but Code Veronica X is a pretty fun game. Had a lot of what made Resident Evil special. Has plenty of horror, suspense and puzzles and replay value. Just going to skip the cutscenes. Final Grade – B
As always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading
By: Justin Hopkins
So, I have found myself in a Resident Evil kick. Been playing through Code Veronica X, 2 and 3, and bits of the first. Watching randomizers on YouTube and wanted to watch some of the movies, no not those ones, but one of the CGI Movies. Three years back I even did a review on Vendetta, but for some reason, I never went back and did reviews on the other two. So, lets remedy that shall we, and start at the beginning with Resident Evil: Vendetta.
The movie starts off with several news stories detailing what happened with the bombing of Racoon City and the terrorist attack of Inia. The rise of Wilpharma and the group known as Terrasave, who opposes the human testing they do and Curtis Miller being an extremist. We jump to the Airport and the arrival of Claire Redfield, meeting her friend and her daughter Rani. Who is left with her so her friend could get the car. Seeing reports on the protestors outside, There to protest the arrival of Senator Davis, a staunch supporter of Wilpharma. Meanwhile up one a plane, we see a sick passenger onboard. Back in the airport, the Senator tries to slip out unnoticed, but when Rani blows his cover, a protestor in a zombie mask starts to confront him, only to be scolded by Claire. Who is going to be arrested along with him for association, until a real zombie shows up and the airport turns chaotic. Claire spots Curtis in the crowd, before said Airplane crashes into the lobby and we jump to later. A military group called the STR has the airport locked down and everyone who was inside in quarantine. Angela is yelling at her Chief, her and Greg wanting to go in, but they are ordered to stand down, till a Special Agent arrives. Enter Leon S. Kennedy who hears their plan, tells them it will only be the three of them. Despite their protests. Not buying the zombies, till Angela is nearly bit for helping one and Greg’s overdoing firing at them does nothing. Have a reenactment of Claire and Leon running into one another and she takes them back to the survivors. Plan was to clear enough zombies away from the lobby and run out of the door. Everyone going go till Greg is bitten and the Senator knocking Rani into danger, which Claire rescues her in stellar fashion and they manage to get out. As things were settling down, Wilpharma trucks pull in. Caring the Vaccine. Turns out they had it the whole time, but because of Terrsave’s meddling. Couldn’t administer. Which rocks Claire. Leon does talk sense to her and that it wasn’t her fault, but right when he does, the trucks are blown up along with the vaccine. Turns out the terrorist behind the attack in India and here, are threatening to unleash another attack unless the truth about who knew about Umbrella and Racoon sity is revealed and that is where I will leave it for now.
There is so much good things to unpack in this movie that I am not sure where to unpack. While it was very much a Claire and Leon driven story, Angela is introduced really well and keeps up with them the whole way through. Did a stellar showing the pain and conflict going on in Curtis in scenes like, before he burned his house down, he turned every family photo around so they could watch him do it. When he is in his first form of the G-virus, he is smart enough to cover his eye with his big hand. Then they had a morale side between Terrasave and Wilpharma. After Umbrella and Racoon City, can see the importance behind the good work they stand for, but at times, you can see where it can hinder the process too. Then you sprinkle moments like Claire wielding an umbrella as a weapon and reenacting the meeting for fun moments.
I love when Claire and Leon are the main character. Besides the fact that they are my favorite (Claire) and second favorite (Leon) characters. They just work so well together. Leon being your fighter and Claire being more passive who wants to look after everyone, but when pushed, can run her way through anyone. For their first CGI Movie, it was so smart to bring these two into the fold for it. Angela was a fun character who they utilized quite well. Able to create the horror of someone experiences zombies for the first time and the awful realization of having to kill what was essentially at one point a human. Opening her up and showing her in an emotional state allowed me to believe she was ready to sacrifice herself at the end and could actually see her enter into the games at some point.
By no means do I know enough on CGI and Animated Movies to talk knowledgeable on the topic. Just what I see and go from their. For the most part, I did like a lot of the work on display. Can kind of tell it was their first foray into these movies. The setting were really nice and the action scenes were awesome. From Claire catching the gun as she cracked the zombie with a roundhouse kick to the head and blew them away. G-virus Curtis wiping out the military squad and the finale. Some rough bits here and there, but the only complaint I got is with Leon. Claire looks great. So does Angela and Curtis and even the Senator. Leon at times, looks so, for the lack of a better word, stiff. Especially when he is just idol and talking to people. It is not a major negative, because they have improved his look leaps and bounds in Damnation and Vendetta. Here though, it can kind of be a bit distraction.
There were some negatives, but honestly, they were not big enough to bring up. Overall I had a blast with Resident Evil: Regeneration. A great starting point to their CGI Movies which only got better from here. Big suggestion for you to check it out if you haven’t already. Final Grade – A
As Always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
Just weeks left in what has been an.. interesting 2020. If anything, this year has been a blast with some fun video games coming out. From Ghost of Tsushima, Resident Evil 3, and return of Crash Bandicoot, but it is about that time to begin to look forward and there are more then plenty of video games to look forward to. Was a difficult task to not only dwindle the list down to just five, but in what order they should fall into. Before we begin, I do want to note that some of these games don’t have exact dates, only marked as coming in 2021 and one has less. As we know, that doesn’t always mean they can stick to it. Alright. good, lets dive in shall we.
HONORABLE MENTION: Senua’s Saga: Hellblade 2
This feels like Deja Vu. If you go back to my top six games anticipated games of 2020, this was my honorable mention as well. If they had slapped a date of 2021 on it, would be my number 1, with ease. While it would be nice to hear some more news about this game. Seeming to find nothing outside of a trailer that I have watched to many times at this point. Don’t get me wrong though, will gladly put this down again next year too if that means Ninja Theory are taking their time to do it justice. For now though, can only fall as an honorable mention.
5. Hogwarts Legacy
I am not a Harry Potter fan. Have read the books, watched the movies, and played the games and never really cared all that much for them, but would be lying if I said I wasn’t excited about the idea of an RPG around this world. Creating my own character, which is quickly becoming one of my favorite features in a video game. Running around being an absolute villain. Sounds like a good time and earning the number five spot on my list.
4. Werewolf The Apocalypse: Earthbound
This game sold me on one thing, can play as human, wolf, or werewolf. I am a simple person, and the idea I get to play as a werewolf is amazing to me and the trailer was a lot of fun. It sounds like the game will have a fare amount of lore based off the little bit I read about the game on it’s web page. Playing as a man named Cahal, a man born under the full moon. Protector of Mother Earth Gaia, which is dying at the hands of the Wyrm. Both of which lay in the Greek Mythology and look forward to see how much they pull from that or something new or both, but in the end, had me at Werewolf. If things stay on track, can look for this to drop February 4th.
This one, seems like it is going to be a blast and maddening at the same time. Playing as Colt, trapped in a place called Blackreef where it’s inhabitants, including a skilled assassin named Julianna are trying to kill him. If you die, they day restarts and only way out is to kill 8 key individuals, before you are killed. Making you learn from each attempt to figure out how to achieve said goal. Trailer made Blackreef look like a colorful, a lot of orange, but colorful. Has a dark comedy feel with plenty of ways to kill and die and I will probably suffer them all and going to have a great time trying to figure out how to win. According to the sight, game should be releasing May 21st.
2. Vampire Masquerade: Bloodlines 2
Hey, another familiar game from last years list. It got pushed back which turned into a blessing and got to play the first game and now I am at a fever pitch to play Bloodlines 2. The first one had so much replay ability with so many different endings and paths to go down. Gameplay that changes depending on which class of vampire you select. So much love and care went into the first story and expect no less in the sequel. Oh I just can’t wait to play as the Malkavians again. They are the best, and this game is so close to being number one, but there was just one more that had to take the mantle.
1. Resident Evil: Village
It had to be. This is a series that I have a lot of love for. Even weaker entries in the series, I still love. I know that a bunch of spoilers have been leaked or something, I don’t know because I am actively avoiding that. Resident Evil 3 may be my favorite game of the year, Resident Evil 2 is a game I still play through and wouldn’t be surprised if Resident Evil: makes it a threepeat, but they got some competition.
And that is my list of five video games that I am looking forward to in 2021. I know it is on the shorter side of things and that is my own doing. I only ever want to know a little bit about a game. Wanting to avoid all else and get to experience it all when I sit down to play. As always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
So, I wasn’t going to do this game till the end. Since, I had already played Silver, but with the journey kind of stalled at the moment till I can play Pokemon X or Y. I figured I should go back to this one now. A remake that is often applauded as one of the best in the series. Which I am hoping for. Gen 2 was never that interesting, but open mind this time. So, with that said, lets dive back into another playthrough with Mui and see how this goes.
We kick off our journey with being told about Ethan and Elm wanting us to do him a favor. See Ethan with his Marill out of the pokeball. Which is something we get to do with one of our pokemon in this game. We get to Elm, who gives us our Pokemon, which was easy this time, how can I pass on a baby alligator and his name is Leon. Picking up the egg and stomped on the villainous Paulie. Before dropping off the egg so we can get the show on the road. Doing a bit of grinding when I encountered a Geodude, who shaped this run. It would have been easy for me to just build up a team like I would from Kanto, but decided, lets run with a team I never have before. Choosing pokemon for one reason or another, never made a run with. So, Mui and Leon welcomed Chris the Geodude to the team. Sweeping through the first two gyms and picked up a Wesker the Drowzee from Before Whitney and Jill the Beedrill from an attempt at the Bug Catching Contest. Who ended up being a powerhouse against Morty’s Gym. Paybacking his way through nearly the entire gym alone, only needing a little help from Leon with Morty himself. Chuck stood no chance, but Jasmine’s Steelix was a pain. Chris needed a bit more time, before he could handle it and even then was more of a fight then expecting. Along my way from the Saffir Zone, we added Rebecca the Misdreavus and the four of them made light work of Team Rocket at Mahogany Town and Pryce. Taking a break half way through the Radio Tower to mess with Breeding and hatching eggs before finishing the gym circuit. Leon’s Ice Fang and Rebecca growing into a beast made easy work of Claire and off to the league. Were we adding Claire Ursaring we went, but the nightmare. It’s no one’s fault but my own, with some of the team being really frail, but it was more then that. We are not out speeding anything and the RNG Gods were not on our side. Every confusion seemed to hit us and even when we got by Will. The same fate was waiting with Koga, but I had a game plan at least. Rebecca was becoming a dominate force on the team and after more grinding with Chris and Leon, made painful by wild Graveler’s penchant to self-destruct at the first opportunity, Mercifully punched our way through and became champion and we were finally onto Kanto, but we will talk more about that in a bit and end it here.
Alright, for starters I loved the fact that you can have a pokemon follow you around. I know they brought it back in Let’s Go and all, but they should have kept that in place after this game. It such a small little thing, but being able to interact with them is probably the most fun I had in these runs so far. In a game that spends so much time telling you it is all about bonding with your Pokemon and this is such an organic way to do that, and got such a laugh from the box saying that Mismagius roaring at me.
On this run in particular, got to have fun playing with a team I would normally never play with. Figuring out ways to pull out wins with Beedrill and Geodude. Pokemon that I like, but have always run into to late to do anything or would have been more hassle then it was worth. Gaining a a lot more respect for Misdreavus then I had before. Kind of ignored it for Haunter, but was a big reason why I was able to get through without so much more grinding.
The post game is just stuffed with things to do. Picked up the Dusk Stone to Evolve Rebecca. Beating my way through the Kanto Gyms, taking special delight in destroying Misty for the countless defeats I suffered during the Poke World Tournament. Caught the five Legendary Birds the game has to offer, Mewtwo and defeated the Elite Four a second time and.. called it there. The Dogs tried my patience way to much and couldn’t bring myself to do more grinding to beat Red. Know there is more to do when you beat him, just isn’t worth it.
Now, the flaws and there are flaws. Complaining about grinding my seem like a dumb thing and it is, but it feels so much more brutal here. Feels so much harder to build up the team in victory road. Forcing you to suffer through or go else were but taking longer off smaller EXP Gains. Then after all of this, still have the grinding for the Red fight. Something that actually feels like it has gotten smoother in the later generations.
I actually found myself missing a story. Gen 5 had such a great story with N and Team Plasma. Would even take Team Magma. Team Rocket was just a small little footnote that never get going. They are here because of their presences in the first game and gave them nothing to do. Which is a shame, because they were nice way to break up the gym circuit a bit.
I had a good time with it and was better then Silver. The world is more colorful and can see why people hold it in such high regards, but think I prefer the other games in the line up to this one. There are a ton of things to do and all. Just none of it really gets me to want to push on and definitely want to replay it any time soon. Final Grade – B +
As always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading.