Idle Champions of the Forgotten Realms Videogame Teaser Trailer & Art Updates

23 Jul

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By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

When considering I have been a playing a lot of Codename Entertainment‘s Crusaders of the Lost Idols lately, the thought of how this fantasy themed side-scroller can become more challenging crossed my mind. The game play is simple: kill monsters for experience points to level up the characters and buy better equipment so they can walk through a dungeon unscathed. The harder part is in how to arrange the party of warriors so the team can dole out the most damage.

I am definitely curious in looking at this Victoria, BC based company’s next game, Idle Champions of the Forgotten Realms. Will it be the same game, or be better?  Crusaders on Steam is in Beta for a long time, and I suspect that’s because the producers have been testing this version out for some time, before deciding to finally wrap it around a franchise property for wider appeal. This fantasy realm developed by Ed Greenwood is beloved amongst role playing gamers for its rich world, and to see it brought to life (again) in a video game is exciting.

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Valérian & the City of a 1000 Planets Flounders in Space

21 Jul

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By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

* Spoiler Alert

Luc Bresson is a filmmaker with a fantastic range of movies under his belt. He can craft incredible material, namely The Fifth Element, and provide quality children’s entertainment in Arthur and the Invisibles. I particularly enjoyed his adaptation of the comic book The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec to film but with Valérian and the City of a Thousand Planets, something got lost in the translation. His latest film had an exciting start and was off to the races with its two prologues.

Sadly, it loses steam by the third act and I found myself not caring for the hero, Valérian (Dane DeHaan), saving the day. He has to prevent an alien race from going extinct and show to Laureline (Cara Delevingne) that he’s serious about pursuing a relationship with her. Val is a philanderer, and Laureline wants nothing to do with him. They are a meant to be a crime busting duo of time-agents who should implicitly trust each other much like how Mulder and Scully have to in The X-Files. The trust needs to be earned if she is to accept his proposition to marry. This early plot reveal could have defined the entire movie, but it gets ignored during massive set pieces which communicate a different story.

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[Electronic Bungalow] Sleep Tech Japanese Style!

19 Jul

1.jpgBy Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

Anyone looking for a new way to fall asleep does not have to buy into those late-night scams they see on television. MyPillow is very dubious at best. I’m fairly sure I put my head on one during one hotel stay in the States and I believe getting into that zone to achieving REM sleep requires more than comfort for the head, but also in how much physical activity an individual had during the day (regular exercise is recommended), setting in the bedroom and mood.

Enter Sleepion 2, a piece of technology created in Japan combining sound and light therapy with aromatherapy to crafting an environment to help people reach a state where one alternative approach can not. It’s a sleep aid that’s supposed to be able to help folks reprogram their natural biorhythms. I have used the smell of lavender, changed the light bulbs to use red light and binaural sounds before to help me on those difficult nights. Though they do not always work on its own, perhaps combining each of these alternative methods can do a better job, since sleeping pills never work for me.

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Hopes for Where Spider-Man: Homecoming Will Go Next

17 Jul

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By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

To restart the Spider-Man movie franchise for the third time may seem to some industry observers a crazy attempt by Sony Pictures to keep a hold of this Marvel Comics property. Much like how 20th Century Fox does not want to let go of the Fantastic Four, eventually some give and take must be reached. Thankfully an agreement was reached to bring the hero back to where he truly belongs (perhaps, why the title Homecoming is used). At the same time, to see this character come alive in a recognizable manner reveals plenty of wholehearted fun akin to the race to get home in Ferris Bueller into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).

After seeing this movie for the second time, I had to make sure my feelings for this film does not change. Further viewings are needed to pick up on some nuances I noticed in this movie. A few scenes deliberately mimicked moments from another familiar character. The personalities between Spidey and Deadpool are different, but to see these two white spectacled hooligans trying to save the day does need mentioning.

Most of the laughs come from how Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is hoping for another chance to work with the Avengers. After his introduction in Captain America: Civil War, dealing with neighbourhood crime is not the same. When he finds weapons powered by powerful alien tech illegally trafficked, nobody at Avengers Headquarters seems to care. Spider-Man has to investigate and put the criminal ring down himself.

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