Planet of the Apes Back on the Big Screen: Not Hard to Fathom At All

Image from impawards.com

Image from impawards.com

 


I think I’ve mentioned this before, but in case you haven’t read that old post, 1968’s Planet of the Apes was the very first movie I saw in a theater. That said, I’m not sure I’ll go to this Fathom Events screening thanks to my backlog keeping my plate full. But to anyone seeing this for the first time or for the first time on a big screen, my glass is raised that your sense of wonder gets the same kick mine did those many years back. If YOU do end up going and are reading this, feel free to drop on by and leave impressions. It’s always fun to hear how modern moviegoers see the classics.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Hands-On: No-Rule Hyrule Is An Amazing Place

Yep. You need a Wii U. NOW. Or when the game comes out, no hurry! Um, the NX version is supposed to launch the same day, so maybe you can get one of those too?

Yep. You need a Wii U. NOW. Or when the game comes out, no hurry! Um, the NX version is supposed to launch the same day, so maybe you can get one of those too?

 

blurry

This blurry photo is a result of my hands shaking because I was about ten seconds away from firing up the first of two demos. Oops.

Other than a trip into the rabbit hole a few years back after an early teaser trailer, I’d deliberately been ignoring any and all news, gossip and other speculative to factual bits of info about Nintendo‘s new Zelda game because for my purposes, going in cold makes for the best gaming experiences. When the opportunity arose to be one of 500 people who weren’t going to E3 to play the demo, I cleared my calendar and made sure I got my butt down to the Nintendo World Store bright and early to score a slot. Once that was done, the breath holding began with the hope the demo wouldn’t disappoint.

It didn’t. Although a mere 40 minutes was spent with it (two timed sections of 15 and 25 minutes each), the demo of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was one of the most memorable times I’ve had with any game I’ve ever played and definitely the most interesting Zelda game I’ve sampled.

The team has recreated the sense of wonder of the original NES game, but with a much larger and absolutely drop dead gorgeous open world Hyrule devastated by time and disaster starring a Link who’s been awakened after a 100-year slumber. How this ties into previous Zelda games is unclear at this point, but there are enough visual, aural and gameplay cues that give the new game a sense of familiarity longtime fans will get right away. The lucky ones chosen to play and plenty of onlookers at the demo event got to experience a game long in the making that’s going to feel fresh and incredible to longtime Zelda fans who may not play PC role-playing games like The Elder Scrolls or The Witcher series that offer massive maps and an amazing amount of quests to tackle. Breath of the Wild’s freshness brings manual jumping and climbing everything from trees to mountains to the franchise for the first time, no in-game companion/follower for Link (other than Amiibo support noted in the video below the jump), and a world where there’s a lot to do, but one in which the freedom to do as one wishes actually makes things MORE thrilling.

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The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Trailer Leaves a Few Folks Breathless


 

And that is a mighty good thing. Some (well, TOO many) gossipy babble fight web sites were going on for weeks about the decision by Nintendo to focus heavily on ONE game, complete with too many gullible gamers falling for the rumors that it was the ONLY game coming to E3 (it wasn’t). But as you can see, all that time and type in the rumor mill was wasted. Speculation sucks, doesn’t it? This game won’t. Back in a few hours with some hand-on impressions. Go watch the gameplay demo yourself over at Nintendo’s E3 site. It started at 1PM EST and will be going on pretty much all day. Back in a few hours with a few words on how it plays.

Hello, Zelda! The Crack of Dawn Gets That Golden Ticket in Hand

Zelda Ticket

Whee, you! I was initially going to pick a later date (Thursday, because I have another media event in the evening of the 16th), but thought better of that when I saw 6 and 7pm slots still open on Tuesday.  The earlier times had been snapped up (3 to 5 PM), so I’m going to keep my fingers crossed my session runs fine, I don’t drool all over that Gamepad,  and I get the most out of my demo time.

 

It REALLY pays to get out of bed early in the morning. Or not sleep at all and get one’s butt downtown to wait five hours or so for a once in a lifetime opportunity. May was crappy, but June is looking nicer at least on this front. Back in a bit, as I’m still a bit groggy… but also very happy.

 

Link for Prez backwards

Yeah, I wore this shirt today. One of the Nintendo NYC employees handing out the bracelets got a good chuckle from it. Yeah, yeah. I need a selfie stick, but I really hate them.

The Third Degree Burn Is No Joke

Status

Whee. It’s THREE degrees outside. Not counting the wind chill. Getting to Toy Fair this morning was no joke, but seeing all those under-dressed folks on the subway looking miserable because they may have not experienced a NYC winter brought a tiny bit of amusement. Nothing like seeing some guys complaining about the cold while wearing pants hanging off their butts, zippered hoodies, no gloves on their mitts and that cold, cold stare. Me, I’m wrapped up like a mummy but still able to move. PROTIP: Fleece is your friend, folks.

Back in a bit with some pictures and Toy Fair-related stuff. Yesterday I got home and keeled over in front of my computer. That non-stop wind walk back home was pretty draining. I’m a bit more prepared for it this evening. That said, this morning I ran into a few attendees who’d LOVE to see the show get a kick up to a warmer month as it seems every year Elsa brings the cold touch to the proceedings. Thanks, Disney (grrrr!)

Toy Fair 2016 Pre-Show Thoughts: Juggling Is Harder This Year, I’d Wager

TF2016I have a box of turtles and dinosaurs here plus some other stuff on the way and that makes me giddy. Yep, NY Toy Fair is here and is going to be fun, but I’m also thinking of stuff outside the box that makes me think things aren’t all rosy and pastel framed goggles. The economy is weird at the moment and anecdotally I know people who just aren’t spending as much money as they used to for a few reasons. Some parents with less disposable income are choosing to give smaller, less expensive gifts or will go for one or two pricier gift meant to last a while (usually something tech-like). Others are going for more educational gifts with an eyeball towards their wee ones doing something else with their futures than becoming future sports or music stars (which is a good thing in my book).

Toy companies catering to collectors with primarily or only high dollar items are probably feeling the pinch even more but need to keep pushing out their premium product because competition for certain big licenses is huge and NOT being there with that hot new collectible means losing money to the other guy or gal who got their goods on the floor. Of course, collectors with space and funds only are about getting that new item first and fast, so that market is more than safe as long as their passion (and shelf space) hold out. Of course, superheroes are hot stuff and will be for a while. But between the retro trend that keeps bringing back older collectibles and the newer licensed goods that command attention of young and old collectors alike, something’s going to give eventually… Continue reading

Nintendo @E3: In Between Glory Days, Some Sparks Still There


 

Okay, the puppets were cute and some of the lineup is really looking fun. But anyone going into this year’s Nintendo Direct at E3 expecting something mind-blowing was probably disappointed. Unless you’re part of that rabid and supremely loyal fan base that gloms onto every announcement as “epic” news, this year’s list of games was and is solid but not really that spectacular. Granted, seeing Star Fox return, that Mario Maker game for the Wii U, Xenoblade Chronicles X, that load of indie games (or “nindie” games) and a few other titles made me smile quite a lot.


 

On the other hand I also know that 2016 will be the big year of surprises and fun reveals as the company rolls out a new system that’s not going to “replace” the Wii U as much as add some new means of enjoying the games coming for it and perhaps some of Nintendo’s older titles. As usual, we shall see…

READS: It’s Free Comic Book Day Tomorrow. Go Get Some!

Dark Horse Fight Club Freebie Dark Horse Kids Freebie

 

So, it’s May already! That means a few things of note for you fans of a few things pop culture-like. One of them being FREE COMIC BOOK DAY which is tomorrow. If you’ve never participated in this event, it’s a simple and enjoyable thing to do. just find a comic book shop near you, walk in and claim your free comic. That’s it. As you can see above, Dark Horse Comics has some nice freebies this year, but you’ll have about 50 different free comics to choose from at some larger retailers with room to spare.

I actually want to check out that Fight Club sequel, as it’s got Chuck Palahniuk writing every single word. Hopefully the guys at the comic shop near me get themselves open before 1 tomorrow afternoon. Sometimes I’ve run by there only to find the gate down and no one answering the phone. Boo. Well, we’ll see what happens this year. If I post pics tomorrow at some point, that means things went according to plan.

Some “Light Rock” For Your Friday

(thanks, ScottBradleeLovesYa!)
 

So, I had a weird day today that turned out great by the end. I got stuck in an elevator for a bit (boo), and during that quiet bit of hell, I missed a few calls about attending a game preview event. Fortunately by the time I was freed, I still had time to make that event and you’ll read the results of that little trip over the weekend. In the meantime, here’s a little tune to listen to that might be familiar to some of you out there. I kind of like this version better.

“Book ’em, Danno!”: Wednesday’s Read’s A Memory Maker

BookCulture AWHey, if you invite me to an event and I just so happen to like what you do, I tend to show up.  Which was a good thing for me as I found a nice new book shop to poke my head and feet into and got to meet the world famous maybe should be in some sorta documentary about her long walk author Andra Watkins who talked about her new book Not Without My Father: One Woman’s 444-Mile Walk of the Natchez Trace, which you should go out and buy and READ. Well, after you read her other novel, To Live Forever: An Afterlife Journey of Meriwether Lewis.

That first book was inspired by this one, which I haven’t yet read, but realized I’d heard of and know someone who has a copy and has yet to read it. A borrower I shall be, it would seem. Anyway, the main purpose of her book tour is to get readers to make a memory with someone they know and soon. We all tend to get busy-busy and otherwise occupied with life and too often, overlook making real connections with those we know (or should know better). For all the “social” aspects of modern internet use, you really aren’t making a human connection if you live out your entire existence online. Continue reading