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Ninety Degrees In April? O_O

Ugh...I had an entire post typed out a few hours ago and LJ died when I was in the middle of saving it.


It was incredibly hot today. It always surprises everyone in New England when we get these days of intense heat in early spring, but it happens almost every year. I personally hate hot weather. Unfortunately, as we learned last year, a pleasantly cool spring and summer means DOOM for all things green. Moldy tomatoes, herbs that never grow past sprout stage, the works. I should know better than to wish for that kind of weather. Just the same, it's tough when you see the high temperatures reduce your bouncy long-haired cat to a lethargic pile on the floor. =_=


He felt much better when we turned the AC on.


We finally got our stove fixed. Considering how much the electronic oven control cost to replace, I was expecting the repairman to come in carrying a gigantic panel, not a silver box the size of a VHS tape. o_o Twenty minutes and 400 dollars later, our broiler was working again! Kristen and I are going to celebrate by baking a cherry cobbler with the jarred Morello cherries we got from Trader Joe's.



I finished reading Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell this weekend. The book was 800 pages, and I stuck with it till the end. That says something good for the book, right? It's an excellent read for people who love fairy tales, folklore and mythology. It's not perfect, of course. The characterization is pretty thin. Each character lives and acts according to their nature from start to finish; extraordinary things happen, but nobody really grows. I'm assuming Susanna Clarke was aping Victorian novels in that respect, too....I don't know. I can't help but think that the book would have been even better if she made the characters more like people and less like "iconic" players in a period piece.


Still, I think it was a great book. I'm glad I exercised enough discipline to stay with it until the end-- as a reader you really miss out if you refuse to touch long books.


Now I'm going to read some non-fiction. After you finish an 800 page fantasy novel, it's time to read some non-fiction!


Speaking of not staying with things to the end, I've taken a brief hiatus from Persona 2: EP to reassess my values. Maybe I'm just sick of playing video games. I've decided that since EP is so long and I've already played it twice, I'm going to switch off with Kristen every two dungeons. So...she's stuck with Club Zodiac and Aoba Park, and I pick up once Nanjo/Ellie joins the party. I like Nanjo better, but we both agreed to do Ellie's route this time. The Science Lab can be such a drag...


So...now that the patch is up, I decided to stop being a coward and try Atelier Rorona for the PS3. We've had the console in the house for more than a year, but I'd never even turned it on before. My brother uses it when he visits, and thanks to childhood trauma I'm always nervous about sharing sensitive equipment (or anything) with him. Just the same, my curiosity got the best of me. I am a huge Atelier fan. I was dying to find out how Rorona stacks up against the rest of the series.


My opinion after several hours of play: It's better than Judie and Annie, not as good as Elie, Lilie or Violet. I'm not sure how it stacks up against Marie. It's a fun enough game to play, but not without its glaring flaws...


1. Disgusting Lolita fan-service. Rorona is a fourteen-year-old girl with extremely prominent breasts (the picture in the inside cover of the manual reminds me of Denise Richards at the end of her "Fun Bags" commercial) who is constantly sexually harassed by her twenty-six year old female teacher. Other females throughout the game also sexually harass Rorona. I'm trying to combat this blatant pandering to lesbian-loving fanboys by refusing to allow women into my fighting party. I don't think it's working...For crying out loud, Marie was wearing an extremely revealing outfit, Lilie was part dating-sim, and in Atelier Violet you get to see Vio (and her brother) undressed at some point, but the sexual innuendo was never, never, never as cheap and gratutious as this. It's nice to know that Gust has found its audience now. If it were a matter of two characters being lesbians, I wouldn't have a problem with it. What I do have a problem with is a grown woman telling an unconsenting teenage girl to sit on her lap, sleep in bed with her, loudly declaring that the girl is hers to anyone in earshot. :P Give me break, Gust! How are you going to pass this through US censors?


Tiny, blurry font that's nearly impossible to read on anything but the most state-of-the-art TVs.


The graphics aren't great for a PS3 game.


Rorona's voice is like nails on a chalkboard. I hate her.


On the brighter side, it's fun to gather items and do alchemy (unlike in Judie). There are some staple Atelier voice actors, though at least one of those is past his prime. The setting is intriguing.


It's just embarrassing to play this game with anyone in the room. I wish that companies like Gust would just try to make a good game and not try to spice it up with out-of-place sexual content. =_=


Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
cortarr
Apr. 8th, 2010 02:20 pm (UTC)
I must really out miss out, because there are no books I would read unless they are children lit or anything that was made to animated movies like Felidae. I lack that patience needed with any book much longer than 200 pages, I'm such a terrible read!

I feel you on the loli pander, another to add in the current list of both anime and games in 00s. Ar Tonelico 3 shows a young girl with see through clothing? Perverts!
leene_chan
Apr. 8th, 2010 04:12 pm (UTC)
That's too bad! :D There are a lot of great children's books that are quite long, like Watership Down and The Neverending Story.

I usually make a deal with myself that I have to read 20 pages a day. Still, there are some books that can be read quickly and others that take a long time. I think it has more to do with the author's writing style than the length of the book.

Ar Tonelico and the Atelier series are both by Gust, so really, I'm not surprised. I guess that they're depending on only a certain kind of player (the perverted pedophile fanboy) to be their primary fanbase. I'm sure that some companies make similar yaoi-themed games for girls (like that's the most appropriate trade-off o_o) but really, there are gamers out there that just want to play a good game!

I think it's too bad, because Atelier Rorona has elements of a good game. I just find the constant loli pander to be embarrassing and annoying. =_=
(Anonymous)
Apr. 9th, 2010 06:26 pm (UTC)
HI
Hi Lauren,

Is your friend Jose from CT, is a lot of time since our last talk, I hope I can talk with you again, my e-mail is the same one, jfbyi@yahoo.com

I wish you an excellent day!

see you!
leene_chan
Apr. 9th, 2010 07:14 pm (UTC)
Re: HI
Hola! ^_^

I just sent you an email. It's good to hear from you again, Jose! ^_^
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )