A Christmas greeting

Hello, everyone, it's been a while. Half a year. Jesus.

I'm just here to wish you all a merry christmas.
I wanted to show some signs of life around here, so I told the crew to get their act together to come up with a proper chrismtas strip.

We all kind of forgot, so I drew this. It's not much, but it's from the heart. So to speak.

Now it's time for the usual excuses. We've all been swamped with studies, work, and the occasional personal issues. You know, same ol'.

I don't know when or if the strip will be coming back, but we're not dead yet, I say that much.

So, see you around, hopefully soon.

"Down, but not out, and far from done"


We're still alive.


Comic isn't, for now, but we sure are. :P


Collections, then Anthologies

Had the chance to play the Street Fighter Zero Anthology last week and I decided to post a little info about it. Most of it you'll already know but maybe it'll help someone.
First I'd like to say that having played all the games both on the arcade and now on the PS2 thanks to the anthology I have noticed little to no difference on the way the characters are animated and other various fine details that might be laying around, and no, I did not spend my time counting and comparing frame animations, that would be insane by anyone's standards, or at least it should be. As far as I know the games stay true to the arcade versions.

So, the compilation itself is composed of Street Fighter Zero, Zero 2, Zero 2 Alpha (an update to Zero 2...) , Zero 3 and Pocket Fighters. Each of the Zero games consist of an Arcade, Versus, Training, Survival and Dramatic modes, besides the Options menu. Once you beat Zero 2, Zero 2 Alpha and Zero 3 you unlock the arranged versions of the games, Zero 1 gets an Alpha mode (english version) and some secret characters are made available on the various other arrange modes (like the port-exclusive characters for Zero 3 or Cammy for Zero 2 Alpha).

If you beat all the games of the compilation you unlock the 4th secret game dubbed Hyper Street Fighter Zero in which you get to select any character from any of the Zero games.
Sadly, this last mode lacks an Arcade or Dramatic mode, so you're stuck with Versus and Training here. What's interesting though, and one of the main reasons I decided to get this in the first place, is the possibility to mess around with some extra grooves usable only on this HSFZ mode. Each new groove adds certain properties to the characters and some even change the way some moves are performed/act, this greatly improves the variety of the game. Each new groove consists graphically of the X-ism bar with a different color. Here I'll list the S-grooves, as they're called in the game:
"Vampire"-ism (Green): This groove allows you to chain combo much like in the Darkstalkers's saga/CvS2 groove edit options. Some characters really benefit from being able to chain normals like this (like Dhalsim or Cody with his f+HK). It also presents some other properties from the Darkstalkers's saga.
"Street Fighter 3"-ism (Blue): Allows for super-canceling and parries, works pretty much like it does in SFIII:TS. Characters are limited to one super-special move.
"Street Fighter II"-ism (none): Present only for the original 12, this takes the character back to SFII days, with all that it implies (ability to chain up to 3,4 cLow attacks, insane damage...) Movelists are obviously reduced/remade to SFII days as well, this includes effects (like the hadouken fireball or Ken not having a flaming shoryuken), throws also change their execution to f+HP/HK and you can hear the original soundtracks while fighting with/against the SFII characters. It seems Vega/M.Bison even has an infinite on this groove which you can see here
"Super-Hero"-ism (Red): The infamous "Marvel" groove is one of the most interesting, mostly because it actually adds new moves to some characters and changes some properties (i.e. Ryu's Shin Shoryuken or Guy's new teleport move) Some characters benefit greatly from this groove but sadly they're the minority, most characters retain their abilities and have no changes whatsoever. Among the ones who present changes are Ryu, Ken, Sakura, Gouki/Akuma, Guy, Dhalsim and Vega (with his huge Psycho Crusher) . Even though characters like Ken and Sakura get their huge hadoukens as part of the change there are no aereal raves present, there are, however, pushback attacks it seems.

So that's about it for the compilation, it's a trip down Nostalgia Av. if not for the HSFZ mode , which should keep people entertained for a while, specially if you have someone willing to play so VS matches, the possibilities are endless :P
Overall a pretty well done Anthology, it has everything it should have and a few extras to keep you busy. A new fighter from these guys becomes even more unlikely as time goes by so might as well grab what you can and enjoy it.

On the other hand, KOF MI2 proved to be a decent fighter for casual, 1 player fun. The amount of unlockables/cameos on that game is insane, you might as well call it the fanboy's paradise, if not for the fact that fanboys are insatiable by definition... :P
GGSlash is also great, the changes made to the characters really sets it apart from its predecessor, as it should. The 2 new characters are great fun, the tweaked stages are a nice change and some of them are even better than the originals (gotta love Slayer's stage during the day or May Ship during the night) and it is overall a great game to play with mates. It doesn't have as much unlockable stuff as MI2, but the little stuff it has is good enough. The missions are entertaining enough, as usual and Boss-Order-Sol is crazy D:

Might as well finish with a list of anime series.
I've got Gun x Sword to recommend, a nice little series about mechas on a pseudo-western setting. The series itself isn't very innovating but the story's well done and the characters are likeable enough. The mechas are nothing special though.
Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya is one hot series right now, based on a novel by Nagaru Tanigawa, really nice story, gotta love the characters. You can find more accurate information here
Other than that I've been following School Rumble 2nd Term and looking forward to Genshiken and Honey & Clover 2nd seasons, whenever they might be released.



As you can see in the strip, studies aren't being precisely nice to me lately.
I can only assume the same holds true for the other guys, specially ShadowSonic (hell, I KNOW he has it worse than me. But he'll survive, I'm sure).
That is mainly why there have been no updates (to the strip or the site itself) for so long.
On the flipside, now I can boast of knowing that the Roman Emperor Hadrian had an underage gay lover! And I can transcribe English words to phonetic symbols about 40% accurately!.

It's a win/win situation, if I ever saw one. Balls.

As for the ...issues commented on the last entry, well, they've gone largely unadressed. Unacknowledged, even. Well, that's as far as that goes.

Good news is, I finally got a new plotline in mind, so at least that won't be delaying things anymore. Not to say nothing else will, but...

So yeah, thanks for your patience, assuming there's still someone there.
See ya soon.

"It's bloody baltic in here!"


A long due explanation

I figure it's time to do this, even if i should have a while ago.
Despite L1r's claims, I think I have to explain the ridiculously irregular updates.

I have no excuse, actually. Explanation, yeah, but not excuse. The "reasons" I'm gonna mention shouldn't have really kept me from updating, but they did.

First off, I'm back to classes. That's the only coherent part of the explanation.
Second, there's a big ongoing family thing going on for me, and we're closing on the critical stages, but I'm not gonna go into details there. Not that any of you should care about it either way
Then, there's this sort of moderate falling out I had with one of the members of the staff (those of you paying attention - if any - can probably guess who), due to reasons that, while clearly unrelated to the webcomic, I'm still not too sure about. I do think it had been developing for a long time, and certain fortuitous circumstances making it all the more apparent. Simply put, we aren't talking, except maybe incidentally, despite some one-sided, and half assed, I'll admit, attempts to restore things (the latest, and probably last of them having happened earlier today). All of them sadly unsuccessful.
But, well, this happens. Sadly. It's not like it hasn't happened to me or anyone else before. The only reason I mention this here is because of the person's status as a staff memeber, which is rather dubious by now, due to inactivity and apparent lack of interest (hell, I don't know if she reads the comic anymore), more than anything else.

Aaaanyway. All the stuff above is what at times would drain all the energy and will to strip (not like that) from me. Nothing much else to say.

Also, thanks to the people who were worried about us during the 2 week update lackage (<3 PenPen. In a totally manly, non-homoerotic way, that is.)

And, now that L1r's arc is over...I have no fucking idea of what to do next. Seriously, we might fade into nothingness now.

Or something.

"Woah, Suikoden 5 is homaging me!"


End of an Arc

And so another arc bites the dust, I hope you people enjoyed the ride, thanks for supporting the crew as usual. I know it took a long time to finish it, that was due to various reasons which I'm not about to explain right now, or ever, for that matter. Look at it this way, at least it's done now. We'll try to make the next one more.. appealing.. perhaps, I don't know.
It would be fair to tell you what I've been up to, since I haven't ranted in forever and obviously the 3 rants per week deal didn't work out as I expected, we're not slackers for nothing, you know. Anyhow, Guilty Gear Slash should be coming out in a few days, I've been looking forward to it for some time now so you'll probably hear more about it in the near future.. don't get your hopes up though.
Recently finished watching REC, a nice little short anime series about a girl named Aka, who happens to be a rookie seiyuu (voice actor/actress) and her relationship with her new "roommate", a guy called Matsumaru who works for a company in needs of a voice actress to make a certain commercial. Highly recommended.
I also got hooked up on The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, which seems to be a series about a high school group called the S.O.S. brigade who make videos.. or some such nonsense. Also recommended if you have nothing better to do than watch anime.
KOF MI2 is also on its way, and so far so good.
Nothing else to report, keep moving as usual.


Another Day, another game...

As you can see, today's strip references (in passing) the net animation KOF: Another Day which concluded recently.

It also illustrates some of our feelings about the whole thing.

Another Day is a prequel to the upcoming KOF: Maximum Impact 2, so the anime is set in the familiar backdrop of Southtown. Each episode follows a few of the characters as they deal with the events caused by the sudden outbreak of a mysterious fire.

Production wise, Another Day is definitely no slouch. The studio that worked on Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex has left its mark here, and the artwork, animation and general choreography were very well done. And while there wasn't really a wide selection of music, the tracks that they did use were suitable and pleasing to the ear. The voice work was good too, featuring the voice actors from the game reprising their roles, and for the most part *cough*Mai*cough* they did a great job.

The only problem, as mentioned in the strip, is their paltry length.

Each episode ostensibly runs for 10 minutes, but about 3 of those minutes are using for rolling the credits, meaning about 24 minutes total. That's barely anything of substance - one would be hard-pressed to even call that a teaser.

If anything, I'd say it hasn't really quenched the KOF fans' thirst for a true KOF animation. In fact, it's probably heightened their thirst, now that they've seen what can be done with the medium.

SNK Playmore has hinted that depending on the response to Another Day, it may greenlight the production of a true OVA or a full series. For most KOF fans, they can only hope that this is not just another teaser, another filler to tantalise them with what they will never behold.

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