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Return to the Nexus (2014): My Thoughts

What is “Return to the Nexus”? It’s the second annual community event relating to Demon’s Souls (a game that motivated me to buy a PS3 in 2009) and quote-on-quote “spiritual re-release”. In short, on October 26, players play the game anew as if they were playing it for the first time; or newcomers who played it for the first time. That along with taking part in its online mode ala co-op, invasions, pvp, etc. Jointed formed by Peeve Peeverson, the Soulbrandt, and other members of community, I missed out on last year’s and was relieved the event would be annually henceforth; that and it’s ongoing. Having played my character from start to finish, I managed to beat the game within 15 hours with a Soul Level of 70. With that, here are some highlights from yours truly.

(Info on this is also available on the Demon’s Souls reddit page.)

                                   My character, appropriately titled “ReturnToTheNexus” :3

1-2 TOWER KNIGHT
I summoned a blue player just for the heck of it when facing this boss. Both of us went to opposite sides to kill the Boletarian soldiers, then worked our way down to the boss itself. I did the final blow by hitting his, “undergarments”. :3

2-1 ARMOR SPIDER
As soon as I killed the crystal lizard to claim the loot near Stonefang Tunnel’s first entrance, a player invaded me but managed to kill him/her/it/whatever within seconds. I then summoned two blues and we cleaned house before reaching the boss. It’s one of the few times I actually fought it melee and it made me realize that doing that bow/arrow exploit is a pointless on a game-breaking scale. (Which there is a lot of broken glitches and exploits which can easily be pulled off, which I refrained doing so in this event with one minor exception.)

3-2 LATRIA, MANEATER
First of all, Tower of Latria is my personal favorite world in Demon’s Souls. Despite that, traversing to the boss while be invaded was a bleak reminder it’s one of those invasion spots any human player dreads to encounter; that and how overpowered the Firestorm ability is which I stopped using against invaders afterward. Maneater, being my least favorite boss in the game, was and still is a duo I still am unable to understand pattern-wise which is why I used Firestorm on them just to get it over with.

4-1 ADJUDICATOR
Being my personal favorite highlight, I was one of the two blues summoned by Yukaslegion, a well-known player/PvPer within the Souls community. Having watched and switching between Twitch channels of the game that day, him going to Storms was at the right timing & I set my summon sign without hesitation. With the three of us taking the shortcut just for the heck of it, we reached the boss and finished it off in seconds. I tweeted said highlight shortly after.

VALLEY OF DEFILEMENT
Being my least favorite world in Demon’s Souls, it was the very first time I completed the world and its bosses without dying. That and I was in human form the majority of the time too despite lack of co-op summons and player invasions. Eh, whatever.

ENDGAME (w/ video)
I decided to record me fighting the final boss in regards to the community event. Lacking a tripod (I really need to invest in one these days, sigh), I spent roughly 20-30 minutes setting up my iPad to match with the TV without any gamma issues (unlike my Demon’s Souls 1-1 speedrun I posted several months ago). Of course I had to spent nearly an hour editing/fixing the upload afterward due to that stupid “motion angle” thing re: YouTube. Regardless, it was worth sharing.

Until next time!

Dan

7 hours 58 minutes 47 seconds

Unfortunately for me, my attempts to work on this year’s 24 Hour Comic was a bust. Around the seven hour-mark I’ve experienced intense hand cramps, the same painful feeling I had after my first 24 Hour Comic’s 23-hour completion (which took nearly a month for my drawing hand to fully recover). This time fortunately the pain went away a few days after my sudden halt at 7 that morning. That and I only finished the first 4 pages after spending the first 2 hours drafting up my script and thumbnails. It was my own damn fault for not taking these health concerns seriously as I promised myself from last year’s experience.

Technically, my 2nd foray into 24HCD is considered a Gaiman-variant, which was based off of Neil Gaiman’s failed attempt at finishing his 24 Hour Comic within 24 hours and stopped. The other variant, “Eastman-variant” is (coined after TMNT creator Kevin Eastman) is when one finishes their comic beyond 24 hours but isn’t qualified as a “true” 24 hour-completed comic. (More info on this can be read via Blitz Comics website.) I knew something wasn’t going right shortly after finishing my 2nd page and shortly after finishing my 3rd page, I felt the early stages of the pain but ignored it until near the end of page 4. I spent the rest of that Saturday not drawing and dwelling over the distraught on the matter. Because again, I should’ve prepared myself beforehand based on the lessons learned from last year.

I mentioned the numbness I’ve had back in May (if anyone interested in reading it) and ever since discontinuing a story I wanted to work on, I’ve become more concerned and frightened over the inevitable. Could I have Carpal Tunnel? Why is my right hand always cold? (Seriously, why is that all the time for some reason?) What causes me to put too much pressure when drawing even when it’s not needed? And then some.

Like 2013, my shortcomings were also a learning experience. For next year’s (and in general), I plan to do the following to help prepare myself to avoid the inevitable:

  • 1) Daily/Weekly/routine page and/or panel training
  • 2) Hand stress management (and anything related to such)
  • 3) A new method of scripting/speed-up process ala deadlines, etc.

While others partake in marathon events such as 24 Hour Comics Day, I highly recommend to learn everything you experienced and by all means improve on any and all of them if needed. Otherwise, avoiding those small things will have large consequences if not careful about them. Just saying.

Until next year. (Hopefully.)

Dan

In case I forget, here is my unfinished 24HCD 2014 comic. 4 pages of 24 of them.

Coming Soon

Dan J Stine:

I registered earlier today, and this is the page I’ll be updating my comic (and Twitter for those following me as well). Wish me luck come October 4!

Originally posted on 24-Hour Comic (2014):

I registered as an online participant earlier today making this the second time I took part in 24 Hour Comics Day. Also, this is where I’ll be displaying my pages on the day it starts (October 4th).

Having had some experience using Manga Studio (which I find way easier and accessible to use than Photoshop for some reason) and learning a lot from last year’s participation, I’m looking forward to the day-long event.

Until then, wish me luck!

Dan

My 24HCD 2013 comic | That Dan Stinehart Blog | @JiibayDan | 24 Hour Comics Day website

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Me and PlayStation 3: 5 Years Later

 

On one September, 17, 2009 afternoon and after wrapping up my campus ventures, my mother gave me a ride back home. Before we did, I planned to purchase my PS3 Slim (a few weeks after the model revision announcement) at the local Walmart. Then LittleBigPlanet at our local Kmart given the Game of the Year edition was only seen there at the time.

My experience with the PlayStation brand was a late-in-the-party sort of fashion. Starting with PSP in 2005 and then PS2 a year or two afterward, it wasn’t until late 2008 and E3 2009 that my interest in the console went up. Even though my interest in The Last Guardian has been long gone since, it didn’t affect my still-ongoing enjoyment of Sony’s 3rd console. Heck, I played some Dark Souls II last night whilst working on my Alucard build. That and the above image was done in the first LittleBigPlanet (again, first PS3 game purchase) a day prior to this post. (Weird how I’m aware LBP’s basics re: Create Mode after my last time using it via its sequel. Took me a few hours due to perfectionism but whatever.) *heh*

As far as Generation 7 goes, it’s undoubtably my favorite video game-specific hardware with Wii at second and Xbox 360 in last. Speaking of the latter, I eventually sold that console to a relative less than a year after due to my ongoing activity with PS3 and Wii software-wise.

I’ll eventually (maybe sooner than anticipated in my case) transition to the PS4, especially considering Bloodborne and such (which ironically From Software’s previous IP, Demon’s Souls, were one of the few games to convince me of my PS3 investment that year). That also means I’ll have to buy those damn PS Plus membership cards if I want to play said games online. Even though I have a PS Plus membership as of this post, lol.

Anywho, that was my retrospective on PlayStation The Third. Until next five.

Dan

Hart & Usagi Podcast #52: Castlevania

Originally posted on HartKnight's Archive:

We have a special edition of the Hart & Usagi Podcast for you this time. We’ll be focusing our discussion on the Castlevania series past, present, and possible future. What’s our favorite games of the series? Well you just have to listen to find out. JiibayDan is our guest once again and as usual he’ll give his unique insight into the topics on hand.

Enjoy the show and remember to subscribe via RSS or iTunes and follow the Hart & Usagi Podcast today!

NEWS/TOPICS:
* Yooper problems
* Syndicate and online co-op
* Tearaway
* Air Zonk
* Azure Striker Gunvolt
* Sleeping Dogs
* Google Didn’t Buy Twitch Because of Potential Antitrust Issues – Report
* Report: FCC Considering Reclassifying Broadband Providers as ‘Common Carriers’
* Nintendo unveils ‘new’ 3DS, 3DS XL
* Sega unsheathes Yakuza Zero: The Place of Oath
* Bayonetta 2 gives Wii U a new…

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