Link Nendoroid! Majora’s Mask Version

I want all of the Nendoroids. Seriously, they are just so adorable and so much fun to play with and get into the pose you want for your display. Unfortunately they aren’t the most affordable collectible, but I recently picked up this sweet little Majora’s Mask Link on sale at our local EB Games and I was super excited to show him off!

Geek Fuel Unboxing – January 2017 (SOOOO LATE!)

I used to do a lot of apologizing about late subscription box openings, but I refuse to apologize for this one! (Although it is going up on the blog even later than…you know what? Just shush.) We were quite certain upon opening that this was February’s Geek Fuel, but it turned out to just be an extraordinarily late January box. Fancy that. But did we enjoy it regardless? Watch the video to find out!

A to Z Challenge: (O)ctoroks and (O)chus and (O)utlaws (Oh my!)

OEnemiesOkay, I have to admit that “O” is a difficult letter for me to deal with, given my video game theme. There are only so many games that start with “O”, after all, and it’s not a common letter for naming characters or worlds either. After a lot of thought, therefore, I decided to talk about a couple of monsters from my favorite video games today.

First up we have the the Octoroks, who made their first appearance in the original ‘The Legend of Zelda’ game back in 1987.

Here's a cuter version than what's in the header image. <3
Here’s a cuter version than what’s in the header image. ❤

Octoroks are octopus-like creatures who are generally found in watery areas and are often depicted as being blue or red. Their mode of attack is to shoot rocks from their elongated mouths, and in the original game they would quickly change their speed and direction to trip the player up. In the second game of the series – ‘The Adventure of Link’ – some Octoroks would jump and fire rocks into the air, and in my favorite game – ‘A Link to the Past’ – they would sometimes spin in place while firing in four directions.

The Octorok is an enemy that has persisted through almost all of Link’s impressive game series, and is one of the first things I think of when someone brings up a ‘Legend of Zelda’ game. My most frustrating experience with them? In the ‘Ocarina of Time’ installment the little buggers would dive under the water when approached, so the only way to kill them was to stand back and reflect their rocks back at them with your sword. Oh, and I was a horrible aim.

Next up, from the ‘Final Fantasy’ series, we have the hideous Ochu.

Ochu_FFVIII_Color_ArtThis ‘Final Fantasy’ staple is a living plant that is actually depicted as being quite enormous compared to the playable characters. An Ochu usually has two or four thorny, flailing vine-arms, and is sometimes decorated with a ring of pink flower petals that makes it appear to be wearing a skirt.

Ochu monsters appear in a number of the ‘Final Fantasy’ games, but my most recent experience with them is via ‘Final Fantasy X’ and ‘X-2’. In these games, like several others, Ochu is known for its status ailment attacks. It likes to cast such spells as ‘poison’ and ‘sleep’ on your characters, often at the same time. For this reason the Ochu can be an extremely frustrating monster to fight because it’s no stronger than any other monster, but it will kill you by keeping your characters asleep while they are slowly poisoned.

Lastly, from the era-hopping fan-favorite, ‘Chrono Trigger’, we have the Outlaws.

Outlaw_SpritesThese enemies appear as bird-creatures swathed in white robes, and carry swords like a katana. They also throw shuriken as one of their attacks, so I don’t think anyone would be surprised if I say that they’re basically avian ninjas.

The Outlaws only appear in one part of the game, known as the ‘Fiendlord’s Keep’, or more commonly known as ‘Magus’ Castle’. This castle, according to legend, is home to 100 monsters, and those monsters usually attack in groups as you move throughout. What’s interesting about these monsters is that they tend to work together and set traps for you. Outlaws are usually paired up with strange yellow creatures called Jugglers. If you choose to attack an Outlaw before first dispatching the Jugglers, they will team up to perform a damaging counter-attack, wherein the Juggler lights the Outlaw’s sword on fire and the Outlaw unleashes a whirling move on all three of your characters. If you haven’t been properly leveling up before this point, it can be a very devastating attack.

So there you have it; three “O”-letter monsters from three of my favorite games. That wasn’t so hard, was it?

Do you have any experience with any of these monsters? Have you ever had any trouble fighting any of them? Do you loathe Ochus as much as I do? Please share!

Enjoying the A to Z Challenge? Why not check out some of these other participating blogs:

A to Z Challenge: (L)ink and the (L)egend of Zelda

LinkandLegendofZeldaOn a list of video games that defined my childhood, the Legend of Zelda games lose out only to Chrono Trigger and the Final Fantasy series. One of the most-played games of my Super Nintendo days was ‘A Link to the Past’, which is widely debated amongst gamers of my generation to be the best Legend of Zelda game.

The first ‘Legend of Zelda’ game was a fantasy-world action-adventure with puzzle-solving elements, created by Shigeru Miyamoto and published by Nintendo in February of 1986. The game centered on a green-clad 8-bit hero named Link, in his quest to save the princess, Zelda, and her kingdom of Hyrule. The game spawned a series of 17 official games, as well as several spin-offs.

The Legend of Zelda is a bit unique in that, while the games usually feature the same characters (Link, Zelda, and the antagonist, Ganon), they are not all parts of the same story. Each game plays out as a stand-alone story that more or less pretends that the other games never existed. For instance, Link may rescue Princess Zelda in one game, but in the next they meet and don’t know each other. Or, in one game Ganon may enslave Hyrule, and in the beginning of the next he’s the king’s sinister right hand.

For my part, my Legend of Zelda love is split between two of the most popular versions of the game: ‘A Link to the Past’ on the Super Nintendo, and ‘Ocarina of Time’ on the Nintendo 64.

‘A Link to the Past’ was the first Legend of Zelda game I ever played, and boy did I pay it a lot. In this 16-bit installment Link is handed the family sword, and with it the responsibility to protect Princess Zelda and the King. When Link goes to visit the royal family he is informed that the evil wizard, Agahnim, is using his magic to whisk people away, and that Link must find a way to stop him. First, the young hero must explore Hyrule and locate the three pendants of virtue – the pendants of Courage, Power, and Wisdom – so that he can venture into the Lost woods to retrieve the Master Sword, which is the only weapon that can defeat Agahnim. Unfortunately, just as Link retrieves the sword he receives a distress call from Zelda and shows up just in time to witness Agahnim make her vanish into midair. Link then follows Agahnim to his Dark World, where he must save seven maidens and retrieve the ‘Golden Power’, the Triforce, in order to save Hyrule from the evil creature that Agahnim has become: Ganon. The adventure in this game was very fantastic and wondrous for its time, with lots of little side-quests, hidden treasures, and a fun cast of characters and creatures. For its time there was a lot involved in completing 100% of the game, but I happily went through the entire thing at least a dozen times in my childhood because it was just that enjoyable.

I knew this map better than my own neighborhood as a kid.
I knew this map better than my own neighborhood as a kid.

‘Ocarina of Time’ was the long-awaited game that finally brought Link and Zelda into a three-dimensional Hyrule. What was interesting about the storyline of this one was that it involved game-play in two different eras of time. A child Link sets out on a journey to help a child Zelda to save her kingdom from the bandit, Ganondorf, and in the course of that journey he is propelled through time. Link finds himself quite suddenly a teenager, and Hyrule has fallen into ruin. Our hero must travel to all corners of the land and hop back and forth between past and future in order to gain the tools necessary to defeat the evil Ganondorf. I loved this game for a number of reasons, not the least of which was that the world was so huge, with dozen of places to travel. It was also one of my first experiences with the kind of huge, screen-filling bosses that have become the norm, and that seemed terrifyingly exciting at the time.

But speaking of “terrifying”, I was never a big fan of the second N64 Legend of Zelda game, ‘Majora’s Mask’. That insanely creepy face on the moon that got closer and closer to Hyrule, eventually filling the majority of the sky with glaring eyes and bared teeth… Yeah, that pretty much game me panic attacks of an asthmatic nature.

Look at it! LOOK at it! Gah, I'm going to be having some recurring nightmares tonight.
Look at it! LOOK at it! Gah, I’m going to be having some recurring nightmares tonight.

Were you a Legend of Zelda kid? What was your first Legend of Zelda game? Your favorite? How about your favorite item/weapon? Did that damn moon give you nightmares too? Please share!

Enjoying the A to Z Challenge? Why not check out some of these other participating blogs:

It’s Rhyme Time
Barn & Beach
Twinkle Eyed Traveler
Vidya Sury, Collecting Smiles
Life Hacks for Diabetics
Destiny’s Child
Life Hacks for Happiness
Wings and Roots
Listen Up!

Nerd Block (Original) Unboxing and Review for October 2014

If you’ve been watching my YouTube videos or reading these subscription box review posts, you know that I’ve been wanting to cancel Nerd Block for a couple of months now, but it just didn’t happen. This month Nerd Block did two things that convinced me to hang on for yet another month: they began experimenting with themes, and they got Kevin Smith to curate a box. Of course I had to see what the first theme (“Collide”) was going to be like, and I was confident that Kevin Smith would create an awesome block. And I was right!

First, check out the YouTube vid:

Pretty good, right? So let’s check out the breakdown…

Jay and Silent Bob/FatMan stickers: I’m pretty sure these are an exclusive for the box, so it’s hard to put a value on them, but seeing as they’re just stickers I’m going to go with about $3
Legend of Zelda dangler: This always amazes me, but these tiny little dangling figures go for about $6
POW Superhero pins: I couldn’t find the exact same pins, but similar packs of four go for about $7
Arkham Asylum Patient Notes notebook: This is another hard one since it appears to be a Nerd Block exclusive. With the amount of sticky notes/tabs that are inside, plus the value of the notebook itself, I’m going to estimate at approximately $8
Agent Coulson’s Captain America Trading Cards: These are something you can actually purchase on your own, but it’s still difficult to value because the set that you can buy yourself is different from what came in the Nerd Block. The purchasable collection has two sets (“Near Mint” and “Bloody”), plus a display that you can stick the cards in, and that all goes for approximately $40 or so. Since the Nerd Block pack comes with just the one set of cards, I’m going to take off about $10 for the stand and cut the remaining cost in half, pricing the cards at about $15.
FatMan t-shirt: As always, I’m putting a value of about $15 on this exclusive t-shirt
Deadpool (without mask) Funko Pop: As with most Funko’s, this one goes for about $13

Total approximate value of box: $67
Total cost to me: $33

So, as you can see, this month was definitely a win for me, and I’m glad I held on to see what Kevin Smith would do with his curating powers. I love the Deadpool Funko, and the trading cards and Arkham notebook are pretty cool too. All in all, as I said in the video, the only thing that I’m not really impressed with his the Zelda dangler, and that’s only because I got a character I don’t know. So, in conclusion, good job Nerd Block. You’ve managed to make me question whether or not I want to cancel you again. 😛