Monday, October 31, 2011

My Little Monday: I'm a Meme?

By now, I am sure many of you have seen the anti stereotype Halloween costume ad campaigns.  If you are living under a rock, then you can catch up here real quick.  I do admit that the message is something we should maybe think about when we choose a costume, but I love the new memes that they have inspired.  What I love even more is that I am on one of them.

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Yep, that is me as Pinkie Pie on the back left.  I know that is such a weird pose. . . but in my defense, the photographer told me to do it.  I swear.  I'm not even insulted.  I have always wanted to be on a meme.  (In fact, I wish someone would take one of the solo Pinkie pics and turn it into a silly meme.)  Then again, I am the only one of the girls whose face isn't showing.    Of course, we weren't the only MLP inspired take on this meme.  These are the ones I have seen so far.

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If you find any I don't have up, then please share the link in the comments.  I would love to see more!  I love that Zecora's actually sounds like her.  Which is your favorite?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Pandaren Debate

Since the announcement of the Mists of Pandaria expansion there has been a very mixed reaction by the Warcraft community.  Unfortunately, many people do not like change just because it is change.  With the internet giving an anonymous voice, it is now easier than ever for these people to complain just for the sake of complaining.  Recently someone has stood out in the sea of trolls and babies, a player by the name of Redmayne.  What makes this Worgen Rogue so special, you ask.  He wrote a very clever satire of the complainers:

I am unhappy about the announced expansion. So because of that, I am going to vent my anger at everyone on this forum, because I expect you all to somehow care about what I think, despite the fact that you don't know me or have any reason to care, I will nontheless tell you anyway.

I have been playing this game for an amount of time, which somehow makes my opinion worth something. And based on that, I think that Pandaren will totally destroy this game.

There are any number of reasons why. Here are some of them.

1- The inclusion of these pandas will make the game very childish. I want a game full of magic and dragons which is not childish. I want a very serious and grown-up game where I can throw fireballs at goblins without pandas anywhere.

2- There is no lore about Pandaren at all, and this somehow means that the developers shouldn't try to make any or create any. Creativity sucks. I want the same kind of thing we have seen a hundred times before.

3- The inclusion of Pandaria and its exotic oriental atmosphere will totally ruin the exotic atmosphere of the game. Just like how the inclusion of Outland and the exotic atmosphere of it ruined Azeroth before.

4- Pandas are dumb.

5- Having semi-animal type people will attract furries to the game. I'm glad we don't have any of them already.

6- Pandaren are a joke race. They are only there for comedy. Blizzard has never made joke races playable before. So they shouldn't now. And on that subject, goblins are totally serious and not a joke, guys.

Despite the fact that this game is the most popular MMO on the market, this expansions clearly shows that it is dying. Don't ask me to explain why, it just is. I am going to switch to Star Wars instead, because clearly that is a franchise that still has a lot of life left in it, and has very very grown-up races like wookies and ewoks.

I also noticed that they are wanting to make it possible for our vanity pets to DO THINGS!! WTF is up with that? I like my pets to just sit there and look nice and be utterly inactive. Doing things is stupid.

So yeah, good job Blizzard, I am totally quitting this game for ever and ever and ever, until I come back. Which I won't. Promise. Hah! You guys are totally losing out here. While you're playing with your childish martial arts bears, I'll be swinging around a laser sword and zapping bad guys like a real grown-up gamer!

I really hope Blizzard loses all of its subscribers because of this, because they deserve to be punished because of my dislike of their development choices! That would definitely teach them for making a game with this type of content. I pray for their financial destruction, because I am SO INSANELY RIDICULOUSLY ANGRY at this for some reason!!

                              
If you would like to read the whole thread with the replies, then click here.  Sadly, not everyone seemed to understand the rant, which is titled, "OMFG Pandaren? I'm quitting! And here's why....".  The eighth reply down, Shoni, is a good example of someone who did not seem to get the joke.

I would like to commend Redmayne, wherever he/she is, for finding a more lighthearted way to get the point across.  I personally don't know what to think of the newly announced expansion, because I haven't looked much into it yet.  I will say I have been waiting for a neutral playable race for years.  I also like that the game is evolving instead of just throwing out a World of Warcraft 2.  I don't want to have to start over from scratch unless I absolutely have to.  Plus, I adore Tulips.

What do you think of Redmayne's satire and the reactions it has been getting?

Monday, October 24, 2011

My Little Monday: Luna Eclipsed

I can't lie, I have been waiting for this episode for a while now.   Despite Princess Luna barely being seen outside of her Nightmare Moon persona, I have been a huge Luna fan since I first saw her.  I don't know why, but Luna is definitely my favorite pony.  After watching Princess Luna's return to My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic I can understand why she has been so scarce until now.  She was locked away for a thousand years, while possessed, without any knowledge of how the world has changed.  Because of this she hasn't been able to adjust to what normal is for the current time period.

Derpy Hooves can't quite bob for apples.

Luna's visit to Ponyville is sparked by the celebration of Nightmare Night, Equestria's version of Halloween.  The fable goes that on Nightmare Night Nightmare Moon comes down to feast on ponies.  To protect themselves, they dress in costume and leave a portion of their candy haul out for Nightmare Moon to enjoy instead.  Poor Princess Luna wanted to introduce herself to her subjects so they would see she is no longer evil.  Unfortunately, she comes across loud and violent during her introduction.  All she wants is to be loved by her subjects.  Then again, that is all Princess Luna has ever wanted.  If you remember the first episode, the whole reason Princess Luna became Nightmare Moon was because of jealousy that her sister, Celestia, and they daytime received more love than her night.

I was really proud of Twilight Sparkles and Applejack in this episode.  Twilight was really able to connect with Luna.  Her ability to see beyond was Princess Luna used to be and empathize with her loneliness shows real growth on Twilight's part.  Applejack, though scared in the beginning, was also willing to warm up to the Princess rather quickly.  She is even able to give solid advice on how to make friends.

Princess Luna is learning about FUN.

















I was rather disappointed in Pinkie Pie this episode.  Normally the friendliest and most welcoming pony in Ponyville, Pinkie was the cause of 50% of the Princess's trouble.  Every time she ran into Luna, she would shriek and run away.  This was also causing mass panic among the foals she was Trick or Treating with.  By the end you find out that Miss Giggle at the Ghosties likes to be scared sometime because it is fun.  She also confides in Twilight that she knows Princess Luna isn't really evil.  Once Twilight Sparkles was let in on Pinkie's motives, she able able to help Luna be in on the joke.  But I really wish somepony had pulled Pinkie Pie aside and explained that she was hurting Princess Luna's feelings.  I know that no pony is perfect, but there was a real opportunity for some growth with Pinkie Pie (and maybe her own letter to Celestia?) that was completely over looked.

Zecora

Zecora made a welcome appearance, teaching the foals and audience the origin of Nightmare Night.  It was nice to see her walk amongst the townsfolk as a welcome guest.  Zecora was once shunned by Ponyville which gives her a bit of a connection to what Luna went through.  I wish they had let her interact with the Princess more and share her experiences.  Then again, her appearance may have been a bit of foreshadowing that eventually everyone becomes friends in Ponyville.

Pipsqueak the pirate.

There was no Rarity in this episode, which I found to be a bit odd.  With a holiday revolved around sewing costumes I assumed we would see Rarity strutting around as a Queen or a butterfly.  We were introduced to the most adorable new foal.  Pipsqueak from Trottingham was dressed as a pirate for his first ever Nightmare Night.  He also proclaimed by the end that Luna is his favorite Princess, which has lead to some rather cute fan art.  I really hope to see more of him in the coming episodes.

In the end, this episode was everything I wanted it to be.  I admit I was really worried I had built my expectations too high.  With any luck we will see Princess Luna more often.  I would personally like to see some interaction between Celestia and Luna.

What did you think about this episode?  Which pony's costume was your favorite?

Friday, October 21, 2011

Hauntingly Cute Desktop

With Halloween almost here, I decided to change my desktop wallpaper to something more fitting.  I searched DeviantART high and low until I found something perfect!

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This adorable little jack-o-lantern witch now brightens my duel monitors.  Isn't it just adorable?

I found a few other desktop wallpapers I thought I should share as well:

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Fill in the Blank Friday

Courtesy of the little things we do blog.


1.   Nothing says fall like     pumpkins and baked apples   .

2.   My favorite autumnal tradition is  when I was little and we would go to a cabin in the mountains for Thanksgiving.  Now my husband go out to eat with my mom and stepdad.  Either way, I watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade       .

3.  My favorite fall treat is  apple cider, chocolate chip pumpkin cookies, and pumpkin pie    .

4. Fall makes me think of   baking, crafts, and fairs     because   my grandmother (on my mom's side) loved Christmas very much and always started her holiday baking and crafts early.  As for fair, Autumn is when my elementary school would have it's carnival.  Being the oldest of four, I attended the event well into high school.  Also, the Florida State Fair was always in town Halloween weekend    .

5.  Autumn free form word association, go!   apples, pie, pumpkin, carnival, cinnamon, baking, caramel apples, colorful leaves. . . need I say more? .

6.  My go-to outfit in the fall is    jeans, tee-shirt, and a hoodie    .

7.  My favorite fall holiday is (Halloween or Thanksgiving)   Right now it is Thanksgiving because I spend it with my mom and stepdad and we get all dressed up.  It really depends on the year and what is going on.  Sometimes I prefer Halloween.  Honestly, I love them both a lot.  I just love the holidays in general.   .

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Hallow's End

Stormwind is ready for Hallow's End.

Blizzard has really out down themselves with Hallow's End in Warcraft this year.  Bug free, so far, and beautiful.  A very different feel from the frustrations of last year's celebrations.  Hallow's End is World of Warcraft's version of Halloween.  While it much more of a Horde holiday, the Alliance really play it up as well.  The merriment is in honor of the Forsaken breaking free from the Lich King.  I don't know very much from the Horde point of view since I rarely participate with that faction.

Last year Tulips was able to fulfill the requirements for the holiday achievement and gained the title "The Hallow".  It was quite a feat considering the issues with the holiday boss.  Certain holidays, like Brewfest, have dungeon bosses that only spawn during the appropriate holiday.  Hallow's End has the Headless Horseman, who drops some very nice jack-o-lantern inspired gear.  When Blizzard streamlined the looking for group option for holiday bosses, the Headless Horseman fell short the previous year.  I don't know if it actually had anything to do with that or if the patch for Hallow's End was the mess.  But I do know that things seem to be smoother this year.

My favorite part is that there are new quests and vanity pets.  If it was just same old same old I would have probably skipped most of it.  The whole set up is different now and it works a lot like the other holidays with the collecting of tokens.  You can then trade the tokens, in this case it is a type of candy, into special vendors for  Hallow's End themed items.  You can also go to  the Inns around Azeroth and trick or treat at the candy buckets.  Usually you get candy, but sometimes you get tricked.  That usually involves being morphed into a toad or spider.

These are only a few of the screenshots I have taken so far.  I am putting more on my Tumblr account.  I hope that you will stop by and take a look at them.

A quest that involves following the trail of spiders.

More decorations around Stormwind.

One eyed jack-o-lantern.

When I first saw this I only noticed the tiny jack-o-lantern being crush.  Then I realized the bigger one is the "head" to the creature crushing the small one.

A candy bucket in Darnassus.

The Forsaken's Wickerman.

End of a quest chain, and he turns into a spider.

A daily quest that lets you ride with a witch.  The goal is to bombard the Undercity with stink bombs.

Monday, October 17, 2011

My Little Monday: Lesson Zero

The the newest episode of My Little Pony came the new opening.  There is now a random train running through Ponyville.  I do love that Derpy is derp'n in the top of the cupcake car.  I wonder if there is a Brony out there who doesn't love Derpy Hooves.  But I am not here to discuss the awesomeness that is Derpy.  On to episode three of the new season, Lesson Zero.


Over all this week's story was cute, but it felt at times they were rushing things a bit.  Twilight Sparkles always writes a letter every single week to Princess Celestia.  The ending narration where Twilight Sparkles shares what she is learned has been the common thread since the show began.  I am not saying that the device is good or bad, just that it exists.  This week, for the first time Twilight Sparkles finds herself without a topic on the Magic of Friendship.  For any other pony this would be no big deal, but for an anal perfectionist like Twilight this is the end of the world.


The first bit of the episode plays like a Dummies Guide to Twilight Sparkles.  We see her crazy obsession with list making, for those who never saw Winter Wrap Up.  Then we see her anxieties surface over icing on a cupcake.  This is an important scene because you see just how bad Twilight's problems are.  Mrs. Cupcake makes a baker's dozen at no extra charge, but instead of being grateful Twilight "fixes" the imaginary problem with the icing spillage.  (With one too many cupcakes in the box, the icing is spilling off the extra cupcake onto another.  According to Twilight Sparkles, if one friend gets the extra icing and another gets the less icing they will assume she is playing favorites.)  The entire time she is completely unaware of how rude she is or that she seems to have hurt the feelings of Mrs. Cupcake.

The middle is the part that gets a bit rushed.  Once Twilight Sparkles feels the walls closing in around her, she seeks out her friends.  Her hopes are that one of them will need her help, giving her a topic for her soon to be late letter.  Unfortunately for Twilight, her friends are doing just fine without her.  Fluttershy can take on a bear and Rainbow Dash can Sonic Rainboom on command.
















A bit later in the day, Twilight Sparkles meets her friends for their picnic and explains why she was so off when she saw them earlier.  She is very close to the breaking point and her friends all brush her worries off.  Then it happens. . . she completely snaps.


By the end of the episode, Twilight is pulling a stunt that would have made Discord mighty proud.  Shame he is once again cased in stone.  She uses her magic to start a fight between the Cutie Mark Crusaders so she can solve it.  Only the spell it too powerful, and things start to get out of control.  By the time Princess Celestia shows up the Mayor of Ponyville is fighting hoof to hoof with Derpy and Big Mac is swarmed by fillies.  All for some beat up, nasty doll named Mr. Smartypants. 






















Once Princess Celestia arrives, all is put right.  At this point Twilight's friends finally realize just how upset she was and that they may never see her again.  After the six have a talk with the Princess, she informs them that the Magic of Friendship assignment is no longer just for Twilight Sparkles, but they are only to send reports when they have something actually worth reporting. 

This story line seems to be an excuse to revamp the show a little, which is nice.  The show no longer needs to meet Educational and Informative standards.  It seems everyone involved in production is trying to find a happy medium between the original intended audience and Bronies, which is nice.  Not the most perfect execution, but it works. 

What I really took away from the episode is just how flawed the main character is.  Twilight Sparkles has a lot of personality issues and she seems to still be very naive to how the world works.  It has been obvious from day one that the Magic of Friendship lessons were a bit of a scam.  Twilight Sparkles had no friends and Princess Celestia, like any good teacher, was concerned.  Unfortunately, the friends Twilight finally made lived nowhere near her.  Seeing how sad leaving made her star student, Princess Celestia gives Twilight an excuse to stay.  I don't think the Princess realized just how clueless her student was until this episode.  I give her a lot of credit for handling Twilight Sparkles so well.

While this wasn't one of the better episodes, it wasn't that bad either.  I blame the rushed middle on the half hour time constraint.  On a positive note, the Brony community has been blessed with many new .gif and quote opportunities.  For now, I am counting the days until Luna's appearance!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The FAN in FANatic

Some of you may or may not know, I also have a Tumblr account.  I am going to post less random pictures on here (not that it happens often) because something like that is better suited for Tumblr.  Over the last 2 weeks I have been sharing a lot of pictures on Tumblr from the My Little Pony cosplay group I was part of for Dragon Con.  Many of the responses were amazingly sweet.  Some, though, were a bit creepy.  Let me share some of the memorable ones with you.


(3,503 Notes on Tumblr)  Photo taken by Al (Eurobeat King/EBK)
* "sdfdfhgddfg PINKY PIE AJSDUHGASF"
* "*hugs Applejack and Rainbowdash* sssh ssshhh dun judge me mates…"
* "The only houses I’d let ride me. Hay-Oh!" (I guess he meant horses?)
* "that applejack is sexy and that twilight is as cute as fuck but that may just be me and my weird attractive tastes"
* "oh my god give me those costumes. all of them. and the wigs/hair dye to go with them"
* "COME HERE RAINBOW DASH LET ME LOVE YOU"
* "i dont like mlp either but oh my god can i take applejack home"
* "LOOK AT RARITYS BOOBS Precious pinkie pie"
* "WHY HELLO THERE MY FAVORITE PONIES-AS-HUMANS COSPLAY GROUP, HOW ARE YOU ON THIS FINE DASHBOARD TONIGHT? THAT’S AWESOME. NOW GET ON MY BLOG."
* "OH MY GO- explosions"
* "I have a different boner. But one of the regular kind" (Okay?)
* "Oh my God, that Rarity. I think I just became lesbian. SMART."
* "I WANT TO TAKE THEM ALL ON A DATE TO A CUTE TEASHOP IN COSTUME" (Now, this one was one of the creepiest ones.)
* ">I like how they did Applejack o.o She looks really nice! Translation; “fapfapfapfapfap” Don’t lie to us, Arandus"
* "Fuck, if I got this instead of 80 virgins, I’d be Muslim."  (Really?  I know that is suppose to be a compliment, but REALLY?)

(283 Notes on Tumblr) Photo taken by Leonard
* "Everything is just so perfect O_O Will never be as cute as that Fluttershy *sobbu*"(There have been a LOT of comments along these lines.  I would like to address this matter.  Your cosplay will be as good as the time and effort put into it.  Also, Rose of May does fashion design/costume design type work for a living and has been cosplaying for over 10 years.  If you just started sewing and are new to cosplay, then it isn't fair to compare yourself to her.  Keep at it and practice.)
* "i want to hug that pinkie pie so much SHES BEAUTIFUL…" (Thank you!)
* "I have the weirdest boner right now."
* "PONIES, PEOPLE! PONIES! WHO ARE PEOPLE! PONY-PEOPLE, PEOPLE! PONIES"

Monday, October 10, 2011

My Little Monday: Obey Celestia

The great Princess Celestia, ruler of Equestria.  A wise and gracious ruler who is loved by her people.  It was Princess Celestia who compelled Twilight Sparkles, her star pupil, to discover the friendship of magic.  In a way, it is because of the benevolent Princess Celestia that we have My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic.  That is how it seems on the surface.  There are fans, like myself, who see Celestia's actions as less kind and more scheming, sometimes even cruel.  I will give her credit that there are times when her actions are for the greater good.  Other times, though, she seems to just troll other ponies for her amusement.

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If you have ever seen episode 22 of the first season, A Bird in the Hoof , then you probably know where I am going with this.  I find this particular episode to embody my feelings about Princess Celestia perfectly.  The Princess has gone to Ponyville for a private party with Twilight Sparkles, her friends, and a few other ponies who made the guest list.  In the beginning Trollestia plays a cute prank on the Mr. and Mrs. Cake who are the owners of Sugarcube Corner, where the party was hosted.  Being obviously nervous about hosting the Princess, the Cakes were a little to ambitious when tending to their guest of honor's needs.  Celestia's response was to fake drinking her tea so the cup would over flow.  Overall, I think it is a very harmless prank.  While Mr. and Mrs. Cake were no doubt initially embarrassed by the situation, I am sure they took it better than if Princess Celestia had to vocally express that they were hovering too much.

Pranking the Cakes.
 Unfortunately, that is only the beginning for Trollestia.  While at the party, Twilight Sparkles gives Fluttershy her first intimate introduction to the Princess.  Fluttershy, aside from being an extreme animal lover, is defined by her anxieties.  Social situations tend to make her nervous enough, but anything that puts any real stress on the poor little pony turns her into a neurotic mess.  The Princess should know to some extent the issues Fluttershy has by the regular correspondence sent from Twilight Sparkles.  The Princess even mentions hearing about Fluttershy's great love of animals from the letters.  It is that moment that the ruler of Equestria shows her true colors and introduces Fluttershy to Philomena.

Princess Celestia and Philomena
Though you cannot tell from the picture above, Philomena is a phoenix who is molting.  During the conversation Trollestia never mentions that her pet is a phoenix or that she is molting.  In fact, she seems to purposefully tip toe around the issue.  After Fluttershy confesses to stealing the bird so she could nurse it back to health, Celestia claims that the little pony only had to do was inquire why the bird looked ill and all would have been explained.  She goes even further to put almost all of the blame on her pet for "having a bit of fun" at Fluttershy's expense.   Princess Celestia is the one who set up Fluttershy, if you ask me.  The Princess also seems surprised to hear that Fluttershy was worried her punishment would be banished while imprisoned.  Why would anyone think that? *cough* Your sister Luna. *cough*

Disaster at the Grand Galloping Gala.

The moment that sealed my opinion of Princess Celestia, though, was after the Grand Galloping Gala.  The little ponies are sitting with Spike, discussing how awful the night was, when Trollestia moseys in proclaiming that it was the best Gala ever.  She then explains to the confused ponies that she always finds the Gala to be awful and invited the 7 of them to help liven things up a bit.  Instead of being honest with them, she lets them all make fools of themselves for her own amusement.  I don't find that to be the actions of a gracious and benevolent ruler, or a good friend.

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As I said in the beginning, I don't find Princess Celestia to be all bad.  She was able to use her influence to push Twilight Sparkles into making friends.  She, with the aid of her sister, rescued Equestria from Discord's initial rule of chaos.  But, to me,  things like that don't excuse banishing her sister in a prison on the moon and just forgetting about her or playing mean spirited pranks at the expense of her subjects.

How do you feel about Princess Celestia?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Post Cataclysm Malfurion

You can see the cyclone from pretty far away.

A very majestic pose.

Sneaking behind him.

The great Malfurion Stormrage with his purple nips.

I love his feathers and antlers.  It is like is is some freak of cenarion nature.





















Some screenshots of Malfurion Stormrage and the cyclone.  He sends you to find a dark portal that takes you into the Emerald Dream. 

The portal isn't very epic looking.

Aw, he's sleeping.  I wander if he is dreaming. . . . .

Pieris, rider of dragons.