amazing

The Book Of Mormon – Bit of a change from Frozen!

Hello everyone! I apologise from the deepest recesses of my being to all of you for not uploading in an absurd amount of time. I’m not going to make excuses because I doubt you care so in the immortal words of the pythons lets “GET ON WITH IT!”.

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Recently I had the displeasure of growing another year older. I’m sure you’ve all been there. And like most years I received presents. This year though I got a present that was indeed rather special, you see for those of you who don’t know I am a massive South Park fan. Actually probably more like a massive Matt Stone and Trey Parker fan and ever since I heard about their spectacular new musical titled “The Book Of Mormon” I have been wanting to see it more than anything else. The dilemma I faced though was at first it was only in America and then once it moved to the U.K. It was a bit out my price range, mainly because it is only shown in a single theatre in London. Now for some reason the greater powers have seen fit to bestow me with an incredibly generous girlfriend that knew this. So yeah, if you haven’t guessed it yet, we went to see The Book Of Mormon. I mean seriously if you had trouble seeing that one coming you should probably get help. We’re worried for you.

Now just to say that I was going into this thing with high expectations would be an understatement. I purposely distanced myself from anything that might give the game away or tell me just that little bit too much about what happens in the show so that when I got to finally see it I would have no anticipation of what was to come and could really experience it all for the first time. One thing that really took me by surprise though was the level of showmanship and presentation. It’s well known that Trey and Matt are perfectionists and are always totally hands on with their work but I honestly didn’t think that would be so clear on the stage. And talking of the stage boy do they use it! This isn’t the type of show that would translate to the screen or really any other art form for that matter and that just is a testament to the care that went into crafting it. I mean why make a stage show if you’re not going to the use the stage to its full advantage?

The music and songs are catchy and cleaver and like with most of their humour sometimes outrageous. They have this skill of taking something really witty and blending it with the most childish things to really help deliver the jokes. It’s very pythonesque in that respect. The songs themselves are expertly written by Trey and Robert “Bobby” Lopez, The writer and director of the other comedy musical Avenue Q and who more recently had critical acclaim when him and his wife wrote the music for Disney’s very own Frozen. Yep that’s right, Frozen. What’s more is that they manage to catch you off guard with a lot of the show and I don’t just mean the humour. The characters are all really well portrayed and excellently crafted and you genuinely feel an emotional attachment to them.  There is a level of emotion that you really don’t expect when going into the show. Everyone feels believable and real which then in turn makes the funnier parts even more so. Anyone here that has seen the South Park Movie though will already be aware of the skill with song lyrics and music of Trey and Matt but are thinking what about dance numbers? Well have no fear, some of the dance numbers in this show are some of the best I have seen and again they work the dancing into the joke or scene. Every movement is done for a reason, which it is evident, and like with the use of the stage they use the dancing to great effect.

In terms of Story I will give you a brief synopsis as I really don’t want to give anything away. It’s about two Mormon teenagers that get sent to Uganda for their Mission. Chaos ensues. The main characters Elder Price and Elder Cunningham are phenomenal. A.J. Holmes really shone as Elder Cunningham and was quite honestly a revelation and I am shocked that I had never heard of him before this musical. Just to clarify as well that I am of course referring to the British version of the cast  as that is the one that I watched. All of the actors in the show were very good at personifying their respective characters but one other that really stood out was the character of Elder McKinley played expertly by Stephen Ashfield. Again Stephen just brought a certain presence to the character whenever he was on stage and although wasn’t in the show a massive amount still managed to make his parts really memorable.

If you are a fan of comedy, musicals or even just Mormons then this is the show for you! what’s even better is that because of the theatre that the show resides in I can say to you that there aren’t really any bad seats. You are able to see the entire stage comfortably from wherever you are so don’t worry if you can’t necessarily afford the most expensive seats .

A.J. Holmes as Elder Cunnigham

A.J. Holmes as Elder Cunnigham

Tickets start from £39.75 and are on sale online and from ticket offices, The show is preformed at The Prince Of Wales Theatre in London.

 

10/10 Must watch!

-Joe

 

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Mario Kart 8- An Overdue Review

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Hello there! I apologise for the lack of content from me for the past few weeks, been a little bit mad. I’ve been meaning to review this game for absolutely ages but every time I sat down to write one up another game just came along and distracted the ever loving shit out of me. But finally I’ve gotten around to it.

 

Mario Kart. Now unless you’ve had your head under a rock for the past decade you will have heard of this franchise and know what its about, so im gunna move swiftly onwards and not treat you like morons by going over the premise. Mario Kart 8 is the reason we’re here folks and Mario Kart 8 is what we’ll get. This game is fucking amazing. Period. It was actually the sole reason that I went out and bought a Wii U and boy oh boy I wasn’t disappointed.

First off let me say that this game is beautiful. Sometimes lost if you play split screen but hugely noticeable when played single player, or in the replays at the end of a race, the detail in every little thing just astonishes me. My personal favourite are the textures for DK and Bowser, It’s just something about their scales and fur that send a shiver through my body and make me go “oooooooh!”. Granted those aren’t great examples of little details as I mentioned earlier but just be patient and let me get to it, after all im just one man! Things like tracks in the sand and clouds (there’s a cloud level in case you were thinking I had gone insane and thought you could drive through the sky, what do you think Im a fucking idiot? what’s the matter with you?) that actually last for quite a while and actually make you feel like you’re driving on said object. The levels themselves are well constructed and an absolute joy to race on, granted a few take a couple of runs to get used to them but that’s the same with any racing game. The new anti-gravity sections of races adds a new element to the game and really make you think about what you’re doing because in these parts if you hit another player instead of bouncing off like a oversized grapefruit, you both get a small speed boost. this may sound like nothing but it really does factor in, say you’re on rainbow road doing some sweet drifts and some schmuck gives you a little nudge when he passes you, instead of just being slowed or both bouncing off each other you fire off like a pre-mature rocket and fall to your horrible death. Yeah not so insignificant now huh.

Babies got back!

Babies got back!

 

 

The character list although extensive I think is rather poor. They got rid of characters like Boo, Dry Bones and even Bowser Jr. and replaced them with all of the Koopalings. Now I don’t have anything against the Koopalings necessarily it’s just they all seem the same to me. I was especially shocked at no Bowser Jr. as this game has more Baby characters than ever. And don’t even get me started on Pink Gold Peach!

The new tracks are memorable and fun and the adjusted “classic tracks” are also incredibly enjoyable. Everything just seems really polished and there isn’t really one level that doesn’t have at least some redeeming part to it. It just really seems like a lot of care and effort went into each and every track. Now I can’t speak about the levels and their design without mentioning the music. this may seem sad but the music in this game is a real high point for me, They just seem to perfectly mirror the atmosphere of the level that they are being used for and give you that sense of real awe and excitement. And boy does this game have a lot of those moments (don’t want to spoil anything so you can feel the same innocent wonder that I felt when seeing these moments for the first time).

Items make an appearance as always and like with every new Mario Kart we have some new additions. The music box item is by far the most useful of the new entries as it’s the only thing that can stop you from being hit by a blue shell, yeah they done went and brung it! Speaking of blue shells they have been slightly modified in this outing, instead of doing a straight beeline for the person in 1st and flying towards them they have since had their wings clipped and now run along the ground like normal shells. Difference is that now if you get in the way of a blue shell they fuck you up too before getting on their merry way to the front runner. My least fave (Other than the god damn coins!) would have to be the piranha plant, which replaces the chain chomp I might add. This item acts in a similar way to chain chomp by eating the other racers but doesn’t do the whole bullet bill thing and drag you around the track really fast. Again doesn’t sound like a big deal but it is, When it does try and eat another driver it drags you in that direction, oh and if no one is around you it just bites at the air randomly, meaning that if you are near an edge or something and it takes a bite towards the edge then you are done! It becomes really annoying.

Overall this game is a must buy for anyone with Wii U and is a perfect game to play with your friends (I have even came up with my own drinking game for it which I will be sure to post at some point If anyone would like to try it out). This game is even so good that I would consider It a console seller and I honestly think this game and the future sales of Super Smash Bros will save the so far failing Wii U console.

Mario Kart 8 gets my highest ever score 10/10.

Subscribe and share! or Luigi will come get ya.

Subscribe and share! or Luigi will come get ya.

 

-Joe

Broforce: Testosterone Fueled Carnage!

 

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Previously I have spoken about early-access games and one in particular I highlighted was Broforce. Finally I got my hands on the game and after playing for even just a few minutes I was hooked and just had to share my thoughts with other people. This game is some sort of potion of awesome with dashes of humour and charm but with a whole heap of napalm and adrenalin!

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The game itself plays out like your conventional platformer, going from left to right (mostly) and has incredibly tight controls which a game like this so desperately needs so that when you die you have no one to blame but yourself. The action element is where the gameplay shines with each bro playing differently which adds a sense of strategy into the run and gun shoot-em-up, Enemies are varied and progressively change as the campaign (which isn’t complete at the time of this article) moves forward. Boss fights are fun and help give you that feeling of accomplishment at the end of stages as well as force you to really use your experience with all the different bros to beat them as some can only be killed in certain ways.

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I love this art style! I have always been a fan of pixel art and games that do it well just make me melt inside. This game evaporates me. The characters are distinct and easy to recognise which is a feat in itself but coupled with the different environments and enemies it just makes it seem that much more cared for. Oh and speaking of environments, they are fully destructible! At first it seems funny but again its these little details that add depth to the game. It allows you to create your own path through the levels but on the flipside it can also become your downfall if you abuse it too much to the point where there is no floor left to stand on. The stages themselves get harder as the game moves forward so their isn’t some massive jump in difficulty nor is this game a cake-walk it finds a nice balance and if you can’t beat a level it doesn’t dumb it down or take it easy it just sits back and lets you keep repeating till you get it. Same with multiplayer and single player. Playing with friends while much more fun and enjoyable also can make the game easier as each level has the same amount of enemies as if you played single player. Not to say single player isn’t fun, far from it, it’s a great way to get to know the game and really progress and see what the game has to offer. I would say multiplayer = funnier not anymore fun.

Now for the part that makes this game what it is. The bros. The care and detail that has gone into every single sprite and character move set really blows your mind, especially when they are always updating the game with new bros, heck even while preparing this article an update came out adding another two more! Each character feels different and unique and really impact how you play the game. Each character is balanced well almost right off the bat which is excellent for when the game is updated because the new characters just slot right in there with the others you’ve collected. The addition of female bros will be seen by some as funny and as others by pleasing a demographic but I really don’t think that the case. Each bro has been designed specifically from the ground up, they will have been chosen not just for how recognisable a character they are but for their strengths and weaknesses and how they can add something new to the game.

This game is currently on a weekend sale on steam for £7.99 but if you go to humblebundle.com you can get it on sale for £5.99 and help charitable organizations at the same time and even when not on sale is cheaper than on steam normally. I can’t stress enough how much love I have for this game and could go on for hours ranting about it but instead I will just say go and get it and you will understand.

Im not going to give the game a rating as It isn’t actually finished but even if it were even in its current state It would get at least a 7/10. My prediction for when it finally releases will be more like 9/10.

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Thank you for reading!

-Joe