Recently I discovered Attack on Titan on Netflix. It’s an anime series about the last of humanity that lives behind these tall walls that protect them from the Titans. The Titans are these giant human looking naked monsters. Titans have no genitalia so I guess naked is the way to go in that situation. Sounds crazy right? Well it gets better. The Titans are creepy as hell with blank expressions or even worse, insane happy expressions on their faces. And they eat the humans! Definitely the stuff of nightmares.
Attack on Titan is also about the military that is trying to fight these Titans. We follow Eren, Mikasa & Arwin through their basic training. The military has these outstanding Omni-Directional mobility units and big ass swords to fight the Titans. The Omni-Directional mobility units are some kind of gas powered harness that shoots cables with hooks to propel the soldiers around the city and bring them high enough to fight with the Titans. There no way something like this could exist in real life but they’re really cool and when the soldiers use them, they move around like Spider-Man swinging from his webs. Really awesome!
Turns out I’m totally late to the party and Attack on Titan is becoming this gigantic pop culture phenomenon all over the world. It’s the number two best selling manga of 2014 and it’s getting even more popular. The live action movie version opened up number one in Japan despite less than glowing reviews with part 2 coming soon. And the movie is even coming to US theaters this fall with part 1 on September 30th. Part 2 will follow on October 20th.
Even the theme song is really good. I don’t speak Japanese but i find myself humming the opening all the time. And my teenage son who doesn’t like anything is actually watching the show now too. Usually he’s too cool to like anything that Dad likes. He mocked me as I binged through the first season but now he’s totally into it. Once you hear the Attack on Titan Opening it really sucks you in.
And Game of Thrones has nothing on Attack on Titan when it comes to killing off main characters. Really anyone can die at any time in this series. The battle against the Titans is that hopeless.
So if you want to binge on 25 episodes of an outstanding, action packed, depressing, end of the world anime, then cue up Attack on Titan right now.
Here’s the Attack on Titan Opening lyrics to get you started.
Attack on Titan Opening
Unknown are the names of the flowers that have been trampled
Birds have fallen to Earth and long for the wind
Praying won’t solve anything,
Only the will to fight can change the here and now!
O pigs who laugh at the resolve to walk over corpses to move forward
Livestock complacency? False prosperity?
Give us the freedom of dying, starving wolves!
The humiliation of being caged is what triggers us to fight back
We hunters slaughter prey beyond the castle walls,
consumed with surging bloodlust,
as our crimson blows an arrows pierce scarlet holes into the twilight.
Shingeki no Kyojin 進撃の巨人 OP / Opening – “Guren no Yumiya”
Many people have predicted that TV would go the way of the 8 Track tape because everyone’s time is being consumed by the Internet. They say that Millennials aren’t even buying TVs because they’re watching Netflix on their laptops instead of tuning to the big three networks at every night during prime time. Well this is a decent theory but I think they’ve got it wrong. I think the Internet is making TV even better.
For example, America’s Got Talent is a pretty good show. If you haven’t seen it, it’s a big talent show with Howard Stern, Heidi Klum, Mel B & Howie Mandel serving as judges. What makes this a great show is Twitter. Twitter makes watching America’s Got Talent a communal experience. Search for the hashtag #AGT on you’ve got all of America’s opinions right there in front of you. Love an act? Why not tweet about it? There will be tons of Twitter users who you will feel instantly closer to. Want to argue about why you feel like the guy chugging 15 pounds of raw eggs is not a million dollar act? Go for it and use that #AGT hashtag.
Now what I’ve done is put all the judges Twitter accounts, the host Nick Cannon & the official America’s Got Talent account in one list. This way when you’re watching, you can just keep refreshing the list to see the new tweets. The hosts are great about tweeting during the show too. It’s a great second screen experience.
It’s also useful after the show has aired. Let’s say your chatting with co-workers around the water cooler and you want to show them a video of this great act you saw last night. Pull up the Twitter list and you’ve got links to most of the acts you saw. The official AGT account is great at making video recaps and posting them.
Official Destiny Live Action Trailer – Become Legend
Have you seen this game trailer yet? It’s for a brand new video game called Destiny. The game has been all over the news this week because it is now the most successful new video game launch in history. It made a half a billion dollars in one day.
Now that’s pretty impressive. But what I like a lot more than that is this live action game trailer. They basically made it just to get the fanboys salivating before the launch. Judging by the sales, it definitely worked. And I’m sure those fanboys (I’m including myself in this group) are all clamoring for a movie feature based on this live action trailer. That would be awesome!
I’m always on the lookout for fun games to play with the kids and also with the grown ups. Wandering around the Mohegan Sun Casio in CT, my wife and I spotted a great dice game called Tenzi in a game store. They had a table set up with Tenzi dice in the front of the store to bring in customers and that’s exactly what happened. Having little or no immunity to the power of marketing, we walked right in to check out this game. And I’m glad we did because it’s a lot of fun.
How To Play Tenzi
40 Tenzi dice come in the package and there’s 10 of each color. Each player gets 10 dice. Ready go, roll the dice at the same time and decide which number you’re going for. Keep picking up the dice that don’t match that goal number and keep rolling until you get them. The first roll is at the same time but the rest can be rolled as fast as you can do it. First person to match all 10 dice with the same number and yells out “Tenzi” is the winner. Very simple game that you can play with young children or older grandparents.
The real fun of Tenzi is making up variations of these simple rules. How about using only your left hand to roll? Taking turns deciding which variations you’ll play will keep the game interesting. The person who wins can decide or you can go around the table.
Roll one die and hand it to the person to your right. They must now match their remaining dice to that number
Steal one die from the person next to you. Now match all of your dice with the stolen one
Left hands (or right) only
Stack your dice as you match them. If a stack of 10 is too high (it’s tough), then try two stacks of 5
Match two numbers with 5 dice each
Roll a straight (1,2,3,4,5,6) and a 4 of a kind
After you match 10 dice to the same number, you have to run to the basement and do a cartwheel, then run back and yell Tenzi (this was a very popular variation last time I played with my daughter)
Make up your own variations!
How about Tenzi Drinking Games for the adults
Losers have to drink the number from the Winner’s dice
Roll one off the table, automatic shot
Assign everyone a number (1-6), when someone wins using that number, the person must drink. Keep playing for 2nd, 3rd & 4th place and target a player
Where can you buy Tenzi
You know that store where I first saw Tenzi Game. It was $20 there and I didn’t buy it. A quick search on Amazon showed it for under $15 at the time so I bought it through them. Here’s a link to buy your own set. Does that make me a bad person for not supporting the local businessman? Yes, probably but you know what? Times are tough and you have to go for the bargains now a days.
And if you want to be even cheaper than I am and you don’t care about matching dice colors, then check out these options for buying Assorted Dice in bulk. The colors are useful in some variations but certainly not required. These dice are great for when you want to play Tenzi in groups of more than 4 people.
If you check the iTunes charts in the Metal category, you’ll find a group called Babymetal holding the number one position. The music is definitely metal, there’s a thunderous drum beat and kick ass guitars but the vocals aren’t quite what you’d expect. The lyrics are sung by three young girls in a Japanese pop star fashion.
Babymetal is sort of a cross between Hello Kitty and Iron Maiden. It’s hard to describe but one thing is certain. You haven’t seen anything like it before and I really like it.
How to Capture Amazon Drones and How to Hack Amazon Drones are going to become popular search phrases that people are looking for thanks to the plans of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. In case you missed it, he went on TV this past weekend and showed off the video below of an Amazon Drone delivering a item within 30 minutes of when it was ordered. He called it Amazon Prime Air.
Now obviously there are a lot of technical and bureaucratic issues that would have to be worked out before Amazon could launch their drone delivery fleet but I think that they’re overlooking one big issue. Everyone knows it’s illegal to mess with the US Postal Service. Stealing mail is a federal offense. But shooting down or catching a drone in a big net just sounds like fun. I don’t think people will give it the same gravitas as the US Postal Service.
As soon as the video was shown on TV, Twitter lit up like a Christmas tree with comments about, keeping what you catch, or hacking drones or even the less creative, it’ll never work.
I hope it works but Amazon has a long road ahead to make Prime Air a reality.