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Welcome to the Chucks Anime Shrine Blog. Here you can find info on Anime Series, Anime Figures, manga and other Japan/anime related items.

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    Rumor had it that the creator of Sailor Moon, Naoko Takeuchi was going to announce something big today in Japan. Most were thinking that the anime will get a redub, maybe a new manga adaptation, etc. Well, Sailor Moon fans got an even better surprise... there's a brand new Sailor Moon anime in the works!

    Yep, Sailor Moon is being reborn into a brand new anime ^o^ Earlier today (Japan time) it was announced by Takeuchi and Sailor Moon manga publisher, Kodansha that for the summer of 2013 fans old and new will be able to see Sailor Moon and the Sailor Scouts in glorious new 21st animation.  It's not known if the original Japanese voice actors of Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask will reprise their roles.  same could be said about the English dub which I'm certain will happen in the future...but based on the way anime slowly gets through the licencing process..don't expect that until Summer/Fall of 2014.



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    I know, this game has been taking up my tweets, FB posts, G+ posts, etc.  Hey, you can't blame me,  I've been playing video games since the age of 1.5 and the chance to make my own video game is one of the top items in my Bucket List; especially a game based off the characters from my own website that might one day make the need for a day job... obsolete.  Also add the fact that I've been wanting to create this game since 2003 but life has steered me away from my dreams and thus you have my current obsession to make this a real game.

    As for blog posts about the game...well, I've been very quiet about it for about 3 months.  Reasons stemming from life's various distractions (office work, my own business's work, crazy large family, etc), the need to revamp this site (thanks mainly to the need to get with the HTML5, jQuiery & CSS3 times & Apple's retire Mobile Me service killing off my galleries -_-)... to the unseen internal overhaul of the game's engine's code and the insanely long debugging that comes from rewiring the thing.

    It's been over a year now since I've announced the production of the Tenshi-Oni game and now there's truly some substance behind it.  Yes, it's been a rather slow process but the release of this game is coming and I'll make sure it is so.  So, without further delay... here's where the game is now since last time and what is slated:

    Pricing, Versions and (tentative) Release Date:






    The first version of the game will be available for the iPhone 4/4s with the ability to work on the older devices (3G/3Gs) hopefully off the bat but I might need to make a patch to help people who still have them to play it.  Of course I  will have it on the iPad...just need to make sure the graphic scaling on the GUI items and effects match the larger screen and newer Retina Display iPad.

    Android Users...don't fret.  I plan on porting it to Android...just need to get over a bit of a learning curve and find the right way to port it with as little hassle as possible.  If the game is at least somewhat successful, my time can be focused more on the game (and maybe hiring other fellow programmers to help) thus leading to the game on Android and other platforms like HTML5, Flash and XBox 360 market sooner than later.

    There will be a FREE version.  The free version and the paid version for the first release probably won't be all that different.  The free version will have iAd ads on it but only in a few spots in the game...nothing too crazy.  Any time I add new moves, graphical updates, etc to the main part of the game...so will be in the Free version (until the possible need for a well drawn out, and worthwhile DLC)

    As stated...there will be a PAID/FULL version.  The benefits of the paid version probably won't be seen until subsequent updates but here's what it'll have that the FREE version won't:


    • No iAd ads (just the site news feed in the pause menu (explained below) that can be toggled off)
    • More Levels...and additional levels in future updates, akin to how other apps roll out updates on the paid versions.
    • A proposed full and growing story mode.  For the moment the game is just pure playing and high scoring fun but I will add more meat to the story and other side stories and themes.  These won't be in the Free version....only hinted at.
    • No DLC until the full version is up to par to what I'd want as a gamer for the initial price.
    • Price: $.99
    The release date is set already in iTunes for the early half of August....realistically I want it out then but it might be pushed back slightly...granted, i really want it out already..been talking about this thing for so damn long ^^;;


    New Pause GUI 


    As you can see from the top image and this one just below.  I've created a more aesthetic and functional Pause screen.  Like how Angry Birds has their scrolling news feed on their pause screen, I will too.  It can be toggled on/off but I'll put news, merchandiselinks, and probably some fan art posts too ^_^
    You can also see a new combo timer I added up top here.




    Level Select Screen:

    Though needing some polishing...the game has a fully functional Level Select screen.  I've even made it very dynamic for me the designer with the ability for it to create this screen reading from a .plist file.  In other words...I can create tons of levels off the bat and they automatically show in the level select screen.  

    The game will have two main sections: Story and Survival




    Final Attack Graphics:
    Thanks to the game artist, Kenneos..I got some cool backdrop art that shows up at the start of Fumi's Final Attacks

    Enemies:

    Gone are the default space enemies from the game's initial engine and now some original enemies are being added.  I'll probably put the space enemies in a special stage but now there'll be some enemies that don't look too out of place.  Not only did I modularized the enemies...I've made their AI expandable. For now I simply re-skinned the asteroids and ship images but very soon the enemies will be more dynamic and hopefully varied.


    Combos and Fonts:

    Some enemies can be brought into a combo when using the sword/swipe attack.  There's now a timer up top (seen in an image above) so you can get the point multipliers if timed right.  

    As you can see too, the game's font has been updated...thanks mainly to Glyph Designer.  Still not the final look though but getting there.


    Game in motion and Beta testers:

    I know I stated in my Tweets that I would try to have a Beta ready for a select few and an updated video giving a sneak peek...but due to tons of bug fixes with the combo system...I didn't have the chance ^^;; Sorry about that.  It will be soon though...not just for the beta..but for the entire thing I hope.


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  • 08/13/12--10:44: CAS on Community Connect NJ

  • A few weeks back I was humbled by this post on Community Connect NJ. ^_^  Mainly about the store part of my site... just wanted to send a thank you to Robert Catalano over at CCNJ for wanting to make a post about this site.

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    Many of you know that bootlegged anime figures are still a major problem for us collectors.  Every so often Good Smile Company will add to their list of figures that have been turned into crap-quality doppelgangers.  Remember, this is just with GSC, not including the other brands that get bootlegged plus these are just the ones that have been caught.  At the top of the bootlegged list would be the Miku Nendoroid figure.  It's one of the only anime figures to ever get multiple re-releases.  It's arguably the top seller from GSC line up over these past years..but that means finding a real one might be a challenge.  Every day I see competitors to my eBay branch posting obvious fakes..and some not as obvious (as the real stock photo is used but once arrived, people relize quick it's a fake.)  So, in short..even when legit sellers like me post up real Miku Nendoroids...we sometimes get put under the microscope or people simple don't buy them since they fear a lesser known anime store like mine is selling the fakes (I still have about 3 left at the time of this post ^^;;).

    Anyways, about a week ago I got an email from a customer who was waiting for the post office to send a Miku figure their way...they were going a bit slow in our opinion but ten again... First Class Mail International is equivalent to SAL..but still worrisome with the delay.

    Thankfully the customer got it and was not only pleased but made these images showcasing Miku's arrival to the rest of their collection. (and with my chicken-scratch "Fragile" writing ^^;;)  Enjoy:


















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  • 08/24/12--09:00: Anime Art Rage

  • These are the worst kinds of people.  Yes, anime can be an art.  The  people who bash anime saying it's art are the same kind of  "art experts" responsible for ruining this fresco.

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  • 10/08/12--13:52: Where the Hell Have I Been?


  • Ok.  I think I better explain where I've been for over a month.  As usual, seems my life likes to beat me up and spit me out at times.  As some of you might know, I burn the candle at both ends.  I run my anime figure business and work full time as a web content editor for a camera company.  The end of August and into September brought about a terrible chain of events that all decided to meet in one place.

     First off, I was still trying to fight the horrible migraine-like headaches that have been an absolute pain for me.  Oddly, they seem to always hit me on days I'm not at the day job, so work on my site, the figure business and the Tenshi-Oni video game got a back seat while I try to not get hospitalized from the pain.

    Well, I finally get somewhat of a handle on what is going on and heal my headaches....to only then run into some other terrible chain of events.  You see, late August and September is the time of year the pro camera industry like to tittilize the public with the next batch of mildly better cameras that they soon will replace shortly after x-mas with only better gadgets.  So, sadly, my day job's work went from mild site updates...to full on almost 7 days of product addition hell.  I've been through this so I was somewhat expecting it.  Not the best way to come out of a migraine headache marathon but it was expected.

    What wasn't expected was what happened in tandem with the prior events.  Out of the blue, I get a call from my parents who tell me our 13 year old cat was found dead outside the yard...hit by a car. Anyone who owns cats..hell any pet knows how sad the news is.  Didn't help that earlier in the year I lost my baseball coach as well.  To be honest, lots of terrible things and stressful situations have happened to my fiancee and I this entire year...so much so that I've become emotionally numb...is it a sin of depression?  Not sure, but it certainly conflicts with my type A personality that awakened from the events that happened to me 10 years ago (that's another story).  In other words...there's days that I'm TTGL's Kamina and then there are days I'm like <ep 6 Simon.  Thing is, the hits kept coming... about 3 weeks go my aunt passes away after years of suffering from type 1 diabetes.  Got to see lots of my family members I haven't seen in years but sadly under a terrible occasion.

    It doesn't end there...I'll come clean with what has been the most moral destroying part of my life since 2007..  what I'm certain is the root cause of my migraines; It's the daily financial pains caused from my years in Amway from 2004 to early 2008.  Not only did health issues in 2005 from working at Friendly's cut my college education short (pretty bad for a former honors student)...but the Amway business.  Well, mainly the (mostly) sticks in the mud who I dragged along with me... never wanted to build a business. I seemed to have been the only one on Long Island that didn't want to work for a boss their whole live and damn did I jump head first into the business.  Another issue with that was that my senior business partners were all in Queens and NJ....I live on eastern Long Island.  Eventually the impossibility of the feat to grow a legit business with people who'd rather kiss a boss's rear across LI lead to me being about $40K in debt.  Nothing really far off from what jobless college grads have to deal with now..but this is something all my own doing.   Mind you, this was ALL before the anime business came to be.  By the time the anime business came to fruition (actually I was going to start it in 2004 just b4 Amway)... I got the better (but still low paying) job I'm still in now.  It was enough money though to pay the monthly payments to quell this horrible burden of debt....which was bailed out for me by my parents.  Well, not exactly....my parents took a loan on their already paid off mortgage to help pay my debts from Amway.  This resulted in a $433 monthly payment...hell freaken jail sentence that won't end until September 2017 if I don't pay it off early.  Looking back, I should have just filed for bankruptcy  and by today I would have 1) nothing to pay monthly and 2) all of it by now off my credit report.  Instead, even before the anime business...I was stuck in this hell.  Also, only since January have my fiancee and I finally left our parent's house to live in an apartment.  The financial and family stress has been the main reason why, though we've been dating since 2002 and engaged since 2007...we have yet to get married.  Actually, our apartment is owned by a family member so we are still (due to money) not truly on our own yet...at 28 years old.  My anime figures are back in storage at my parent's house...so my work schedule is: work by 9am, out of work at 7pm, anime figure business at old home until 10pm...drive back home...rinse and repeat.

    What does this have to do with last month?  Well, add all of these events and handicaps together with more insult to injury.  In addition to a number of anime figure buyers who jumped ship due to the good old American / Japan anime licnenceing shipment delays, both my main suppliers shorted me figures people paid me for in advance.  So, I go and do the right thing and order the lost figures from other retailers who..sadly overcharge for rare figures.  The loss caused me to be late with recent figure payments to my suppliers (making it iffy if I'll again get shorted figures) which then forced me to auction off lots of anime figures.  eBay auctions sound good on the outside but they tend to be a terrible experience   Not only do auctions winners tend to bail out since they think it's a game...the winners who do pay tend to ask for white glove service on $100 figures they somehow won for $15.  Money, time and sanity lost in a hobby I have the utmost love for..all outside my control and during a bad months to begin with.  So, I got worried that the anime business will go the way of my old Amway business and basically went into a mental break down.

    I lost my mind for about a day or two.  No, I'm in no way suicidal...hell, doing so would only cause more issues....but I was worried about my sanity.  A person can only handle so much and holy crap did it take alot of hits for me to crack.  Any less of a person would have been long gone, talking to themselves in backwards Latin in a padded room.

    So, what's going on?  What's the plan?  Is the anime business really having to go away?

    Nope, the anime business is still here and those of you waiting on figures, I'll get them to you once released or 3rd party if need be.  What I did, as some of you might have seen, is halt the addition of new figure pre-orders since, understandably, I was worried if my suppliers would honor my reserves being I ran late for the first time and with them shorting me even when I wasn't late.

    Thankfully, the anime store is running and you can send me your pre-orders on what I list.

    I plan on not only improving the store's selection, but the look and feel of the whole site (and anime.fm) in general.

    Tenshi-Oni (though also delayed by iOS's terrible conversion and all of these events) is back in production and more in the next few days I'm certain on that.

    Same with this blog;  I need to get back to making content for here since 1) I love it 2) it can be a little bit of a money maker for me...an as you all can see...i'll need all the help I can get.

    For years I've held off on Flash Animations,  AMVs, participating on Newgrounds.com and making any videos on Youtube....that is now planned to change.

    What about the voice acting? Well, money is tight and thus I couldn't complete the very expensive courses to get my demo reel ready.  Yet, I'm not giving up on that.  As of last week I got an audition to chase after and with my apartment being very quiet and my editing knowledge..I'll make my own early demo reel, use the money from Skype recording gigs to pay for a true demo reel.  I want to be an anime voice actor god dammit! >_<

    I plan on revamping the site's look and feel to match current web design structures (ie: jQuery, HTML5 and CSS3) A tidbit of this can be seen in the main store site with the revolving banner (which needs updating -_-)  Two reasons I'm doing this 1) my sites and blog need an overhaul to the next version...so I can make more content on here (like the old anime sanctuaries, etc) 2) To help create a resume for me.

    Why make Chuck's Anime Shrine act like a "resume"?  Well, I've gone and updated my real resume so that  I can hopefully move on from the job I have now.  Yes, my ultimate goal is still to be my own boss.  I won't throw that dream away though the anime figure sales sadly look like they won't be all I need to break free.  I've been too complacent in a job that pays rather little ($15/hour).  The job is mentally stressful for a number of reasons...let alone the low pay I get for all the computer knowledge I have.  Sadly, I'm the only computer literate person in the place and any of you IT people understand the hell I made for myself by not jumping ship early on to better, more understanding computer jobs.  My knowledge  particularly in my recent escapades in Objective-C for the Tenshi-Oni game shows that I'm horribly underemployed and could work from home (instead of driving 70 miles round trip to my current employment).

    Instead of making hardly $20K a year...I should be making $70K+ and though my goal isn't to work a job my whole life...the extra boost in pay that I can get can help out with all that holds me back as it is...since the main issues I have are financial burdens.  It could bring more money (and less stress) into the anime business,  allow me to pay my team working on Tenshi-Oni (and other game projects), and maybe, maybe free me from the old ghost debt so I can marry the love of my life finally.

    So, what will change? Well, in terms of the anime biz, sadly, it looks like the Amazon and eBay branches will take a back seat for a good time.  With all of the back stock practically sold..all that's left are the pre-orders people have reserved.  If I get any cancellations, I'll post them to these sections.  for now, I'll reserve only what people want until thins calm down for a bit.  But hey, that means I might be able to blog about the figures more and other stuff for the site ^_^  My eBay branch might still sell Swarovski figures thanks to the x-mas season around the corner..so it's not out...just shifting gears until the dust settles.

    I'm always going to fight for my dreams and I will fight what life throws at me...or die trying.  As Cave Johnson says...




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    #GameDev
    This is a bit of an odd post here on CAS but I thought it'd be useful for people like me who are trying to learn XNA via the XNA Game Studio 4.0's Shooter tutorial and can't get past the "No suitable graphics card error" error when trying to debug.  The true fix for my fellow game developers out there is actually to get a PC with a decent graphics card.  Reading the questions on this that have been posted on forums, stackflow, etc since 2010..seems that the answers are simply, "Y U No have a better PC?"

    Well, as many of you know, I've been developing my iOS videogame, Tenshi-Oni on/off for the past year.  I use a 2 year old Macbook pro with the most recent OS (currently Mountain Lion as of this post) and all is fine and dandy.  This Macbook is a jump from my old Dell Dimension I got in 2002 back when I first started this site.  I did upgrade it midway with a Radeon 9200 graphics card for duel monitor support...but yes, it's well done for in terms of modern day development.  I could maybe try to use virtual machine and in a sense turn my Mac into a semi-Hackintosh...but I don't want to possibly ruin my Mac and jeopardize Tenshi-Oni.

    "So, why don't you get a new PC?...you can build one for like $500-$600."  Sorry, not an option right now and my reasoning for getting into XNA development all of a sudden is to re-learn how to use the Visual C# IDE and XNA Framework. (more on that in a future post).  So, I'd imagine and seen it from the questions posted (but hardly answered) that many people with sub-par PCs and/or graphics cards want at least get the damn Shooter tutorial game to debug/run on your PC.  So, here's the "solution" I've made:

    "Solution":
    • Revert back to Visual C# 2008 & XNA 3.1
    Not exactly a true fix since you won't be able to test any gestures and frameworks in 4.0...particularly for Windows Phone....but Windows x86 and Xbox builds can be made.  Just downloading the completed tutorial files and building it in Visual c# won't work without a little bit of  footwork...which I did for anyone looking for it...


    Linked above is the Shooter XNA 4.0 Completed Tutorial Project...but made to work on Visual C# Express 2008 w/ XNA 3.1.  Granted, it's not an amazing feat of programming at all...for the most part, it's really just a bit of CTRL+C, CTRL+V and minor tweaking.  Some of the minor tweaking included omitting XNA 4.0 Framework references, like the .Touch for Windows phone plus I made the ship spawn a fifth of the way in since it spawning at x=0..doesn't look that great since half the ship will show and half will be off the screen to the left.  Also, the debug screen in x86 on Visual C# seems to have an output height beyond the Shooter Tutorial's graphics...so I fixed that with the graphics.PreferredBackBufferHeight = 480; line in Game1.cs.  

    I can confirm it works on my old Dell with the x86 build.  I can't confirm it works on the Xbox 360 for testing but the build is there too.

    Hope this helps at least get people like me with less than stellar PC step-ups a chance to get their feet wet with XNA/C# Game Development until we can nab ourselves a serious gaming and dev rig.

    oh..and yes...I do plan on porting Tenshi-Oni to Windows...the controls are really best for Windows Phone or Windows 8 tablets as oppose to Xbox/PC but...I'll see if I can fix that once I cross that bridge.  More on why I'm diverting from the moment to XNA...in a bit.

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    Didn't mean for another hiatus in the blog and for the updates with the anime store (and my planned site upgrades) but Korra here got too mad about Star Wars being bought by Disney, went into her Avatar state and now Long Islanders can't find enough gas to hoard in order to go back to their usual, needless, manic runnings arounds & staring at the even less impressive mediocre/overpriced beaches.  Ok, in all seriousness, this past week has been nuts and it did turn life upside down for myself and others here.  I used to want to be a meteorologist for a good while in my childhood and when I saw what the hell odd "Frankenstorm" Hurricane Sandy became... I joined the rest of the meteorological community who simultaneously thought somebody divided zero... causing not only a strong, late season hurricane but a freaken storm that moved west into the northeastern US.  Basically the worst possible angle any storm can do to the NYC area.

    Where I got hit wasn't too bad though in comparison to people west of me.   I live in central/eastern Long Island but as you people can see, Sandy did alot of damage in an area not used to many hurricanes (yet we are now 2/2 for the past two years).  I was out of power for days and even as I type this, there are 400,000+ people just here on LI still without power.  We also practically ran out of gas...and that's not good for an impatient and generally incompetent area of the country.  Honestly, if there ever was a zombie apocalypse...Long Islanders wouldn't make the first day...these are people who are seriously not able to handle being inconvenienced by a storm or anything for that matter.  People in lower Manhattan, Staten Island and New Jersey have much, much more to complain about with the aftermath of Sandy...it's heartbreaking to see what my neighbors in the tri-state area have to deal with and the loss from this odd storm.

    Another bit of news that lead to my being away again and the reasoning for posting that XNA bit just a few moments ago is that I'm really on the move when it comes to my dayjob situation.  Yes, I still have the anime store business but when I learned that the web design work I currently do for my current day job is not just underpaying ($15/hr) but massively underpaying me...I decided to take action and try to replace it with a much, much better paying job in NYC.  About 3-4 weeks ago I was interviewed by an IT recruiting firm and thanks to a good friend and customer in my anime store...I'm trying to become a video game programmer for a game company in the city.  My resume was sent in last Friday, just before the storm...



    ...until today that business was out of power due to the storm.  My current day job...the one that pays web devs $15/hr... was out of power for most of the week and now the boss there is slating cuts for even next week...thus making the need to move on to greener pastors more dire.  I am trying to get web dev positions but this game dev position is what I'm really aiming for...since, well... I got my Computer Science degree back in 2005, before game dev education was taken seriously, because I wanted to code games.  I'm not up to coding for some boring financial firm or doing underpaid web secretary work like I do now for a company that doesn't know the difference between email and gmail and feels that anything involving computers is your fault. Seriously...if you are computer illiterate in this day and age..stop...just stop, and now look in the mirror...cry, take a deep breath, cry some more, get some humility and then get your ass to a damn class about this stuff.  I mean, the owner of the place I currently work for, that camera store that starts with a B, emails me from his iPad...asking me what we sell products for on our own damn web site!...then the next email in his thread of brain-cell killing stupidity is "what does, x website sell y product for?" By His noodley appendages, it's like watching Mitt Romney try to drink a glass of water...



    As one can see...I need to change my employment situation and fast, so right after the power finally got back online and after family stopped using me as a taxi...I got my feet running trying to be prepared to be a game developer in NYC.  The company I'm aiming to work with deals with XNA, Xbox Arcade, Games For Windows, and now Windows 8 games...so I'm reteaching myself Visual C# and refreshing my XNA knowledge   Thankfully, my year+ development of Tenshi-Oni on iOS/XCode is making this process much, much easier.  I'm actually rather excited with the chance to work in this field with Windows game dev in addition to the iOS dev I've been teaching myself.  Also, as one could guess, this field can pay more than even the 3x-better-than-silly-camera-store-web-site-$15/hr-job web design positions I've been asked to be a part of.  So, with a cup of coffee, maybe some XS energy drinks and little sleep...it's time I make CAS HTML5/CSS3 compliant, fix up my anime store, restart my youtube page and hell, maybe even get back to making AMVs and Flash animations.  I think that Sephiroth vs Mogs animation left way too many people hanging 9+ years ago ^^;;  I got to at least tie some knots before HL3 is finally announced and made.

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    As some of you might have seen, the blog got a little bit of a face lift.  I replaced the old scrolling gallery with this one I use in the anime store.  With it, the blog loads much, much quicker and I'm able to categorize more featured topics.

    A couple other things have been changed, upgraded.  The nav bar up top looks and feels much better and now encompasses many more links than before without using too much space (of course, that's what a common drop-down nav bar can do ^^;;)  Both the new nav bar and the new featured menu utilize HTML5, CSS3, and jQuery.  People with IE7 or earlier might run into some issues but Chrome, Firefox, IE8>, Safari and Opera users should be abe to see these fine.  Granted, I probably could spruce up the nav bar a bit with some better internal backgrounds and maybe some little icons for say Twitter and YouTube, but it's a start.

    Many more links have been added but as stated earlier...lots of the photo content sections got ruined from Apple moving from MoblieMe to iCloud... and not bringing the damned iGalleries with them -_-.  As soon as I can, I'll restore them with either Flickr or Picasa libraries...so the anime pics, idols, etc will be coming back.  Anime Sanctuaries, a kind of wiki and throwback to the anime shrine of old is also planned to get some dire updating and filling in of content long overdue.

    If any of you have been with the site long enough...you'll see me featuring my old Sephiroth Vs Mogs Flash animation that got (semi)popular on Newgrounds, almost 10 years ago ^^;;  Well, I'm getting back to making Flash animations asap and yes, I plan on eventually making the sequel to that animation since well, I sure as hell left people hanging with that and I think it's my obligation to continue that series.  Newgrounds is still very viable for animations (and actionScript games) plus, as a YouTube Partner, I can utilize YouTube with more original content I've been dying to Completionist get back to.  Thanks to Danny Choo and even more recently, NormalBoots team (JonTron, PBGamer, The, Continue? Show, Egoraptor (I remember him from when I was putting stuff on NG) and GameGrumps), I've been inspired to make some video game related videos.  I'd like to do some Let's Play vids and try to come up with some original game-related videoshow clips.  Basically, my own show on youtube...been a gamer since 1985 and an anime fan since 1997...so I think I'm long overdue to join the rest of the people in my generation dong this stuff on Youtube.

    But wait, there's more.  A few posts ago I uploaded a Windows Games/XNA tutorial that could work in  the older Visual C# 2008 / XNA 3.1 environment.  Reason being, in case you see my tweets and FB posts, is since I'm working extra hard to get a position at a video game company in the city.  So, not only am I working on my Tenshi-Oni game for the iOS (and hopefully later on Android)...but I'm actually going to make some smaller games in Windows XNA.  I already have one in the works that I'll give out for free and make as a pre-curser to the first release of Tenshi-Oni.  Heck, all of this programming stuff, though making me tired like the top pic here, is an effort to get out of my current, underpaying day job and to b where I should be with the varied skills I have...that aren't being utilized well at that camera store I go to during the day when I'm not shipping anime figures and programming anime angels and demons.

    Since I'm dabbing in so many topics and development tools (I'll list them below)...I also added a better category tab section at the top of the posts on the main page.  This way, I can also blog more since, the blog needs to ge back into gear as well and there's always so many anime figures, anime news, gaming news, things on my mind, etc to talk about.  Non-anime/game memes, etc, I'll post in my pot-luck blog, charlesgaffney.com (site needs some updating too ^^;;).

    Oh, and lets not forget Anime.FM... I didn't forget about that site.  I have big plans for it and my recent foray into HTML5, CSS3 and jQuery will be of aid in that project.

    Here's' a list of programming languages, environments and tools I'm working in...so in other words, I'm doing what I should have done a long while ago, add lots more content!

    • Objective-C / Xcode (for my Tenshi-Oni game)
    • C#, XNA, Visual C# (for Windows game development)
    • Adobe Dreamweaver, HTML5, CSS3, jQuery (for of course on-going web design and Anime.FM, and Tenshi-Oni.com )
    • Adobe Flash, actionScript (for my return to Flash animation and Flash Game design)
    • Java, Eclipse IDE (for Android development)
    • Adobe Final Cut Pro, Adobe After Effect (for some planned YouTube videos)
    • Adobe Photoshop, Physics Editor, Particle Editor, GlyphDesigner (for Tenshi-Oni/game graphics)

    (edit: forgot to mention... the Disqus-powered comments have been upgraded too.  Really sorry for the comment system over the years being changed around.  Blame google changing things around with blogger over the years for that -_-  Hopefully with Disqus, the comments will stay here on the site and of course give it more usability.)

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    It's been a long time coming but I have resurrected parts of the site and blog that have laid dormant or for some, seems to have been lost in time.  So what's back?  Well, for starters, the Anime Picture of the Day posts!  Looking like the mystical bird of resurrection, the Phoenix, this beautiful anime picture captures the fiery power of red hues.

    So yes, Anime Pic of the Day is back...and next week, I'll bring back Fan Service Friday, on Monday expect to see another MoeMonday post, as well as some others from the past and new ^_^

    What else is back?

    Well, go to the Anime Gallery page and you'll see a rebuild in progress.  The Anime Gallery is returning and they will be better categorize than in the past with wonderful jQuery, HTML5, CSS3 goodness and social networking tie-ins as to modernize a now  somewhat retro web site feature (image shrines).

    What happened to the galleries from?  Well, thank the devs at Apple for that mess.  I, like many about a  year or two back were paying for the old MobileMe service.  Part of that service was a dropbox-like gallery feature.  Well, when Apple moved to their iCloud service, they erased the galleries and everything with them >_<  Gone were the cosplay images, gone were the Japanese Idols, as well as pics from anime cons... and gone was the anime picture gallery.  Also, a 3rd part site decided to shut down their feed service, so even the relevant feeds from my blog were erased.   Times have changed, it's easier to create rss feeds with thumbnail images and with my increased knowledge in a slew of web-design and programming languages  I thought it was time to bring back parts of the site and make them better than before.  Also, as you could guess...I plan on bringing back the cosplay and Japanese idol sections as well in this revival and expansion of the site.

    The blog itself has been getting some facelifts;  Finally, after so many hours of toiling,  I created a thumbnailed RSS feed section here, showing the latest anime figures and products from my store.  You'd think something like this would have be elementary web design...but it still seems you have to jump through hoops to get thumbnails from RSS feeds (especially if I'm pulling it from the PHP-powered OsCommerce cart >_<)


    Currently the galleries now just need some filling in of content but, that's what I'll use the blog here for.

    This s also to prep from some major overhaul of Anime.FM I simply can't let such a good URL sit there as a hardly working blog.



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  • 11/20/12--18:05: Atari 2600 Controller FAIL


  • #gaming

    The Atari 2600... it was my first introduction to video games when I was a small child and when I say small child, I mean really small.  I was born in November of 1983 and already I could have been predicted to become a game programmer, since little infant me was showing my mom how to get the VCR to work..as she most of the time didn't know how to.  I was fascinated with the ability to control what was on the TV and tinkering with the latest electronics was probably my first skill before I even spoke my first sentence.  My father soon got for himself (and me) the slim version of the Atari 2600.  The ability to control the TV soon took a new meaning when I first held the joystick controller and played my first game, PacMan Jr. Then, for my 2nd birthday I can remember vividly opening my gifts, which were a number of 2600 games like Yar's Revenge and PitFall! and I can still recall jumping up and down in pure joy at sight of new games. No joke, little 2 year old me would actually cuddle with the new games in the crib similarly to how kids cuddle with their favorite stuffed animals.  (my bedtime friends were the Pitfall! cartridge and a big Fievel plush).  I actually beat Pacman Jr. before getting these new gifts...ok, there was no "beating" PacMan Jr. since it had 4 revolving stages; the last being a giant dark-green map with a harp bonus bouncing around the stage (see, I still remember).

    Why am I bringing up my first foray into videogames...that inevitably got me into anime as well?... well, because a god damn 2 year old knew how to hold an Atari 2600 controller!

    Did you see this mess here?  Ok, what you are looking at is a "new" Atari 2600.  Saw it today at Family Dollar near a similar Sega Genesis.  It's not the true system with the ability to add cartridges, etc....just one of those instant plug-into-the-TV-with-RGB-cords things.  I have the one that's just the controller with about 5 games built into it but this one looks like the original, non-slim 2600 with two controllers and 75 games (most I have though).. and for only $30.  Pretty sweet deal actually but I can't help but laugh at the sheer stupidity going on in the promo photos on it's box.  Do they think they are holding a PS3 controller with sixaxis functionality?!  I mean, what is this?!...I don't even.  Every hired actor in these pictures are holding the controller sowrong.  Have the models for this shot never played videogames before?  Was the set up for this photo shoot like:

    Director: "Ok...we need a shot of the entire controller too, but we need you to still 'act' like you are playing." 
    Actor Derp #1: "Isn't this how we actually play the games, though?"
    Director: "The fuck if I know. I wasn't taught 'Joystick Holding 101' in my 5th year of Liberal Arts...that was back high school drama class."
    Actor Derp #2: "No worries here boss. I'm an expert at Angry Birds and Words With Friends... I got this."

    I think everyone in those images need to go back in time to 1985 and get some lessons in video game playing from 2 year old me (Great Scott!)

    Here, by the way, is a current image of my precious first video game system.


    Sadly, it's been sitting lonely in my old room's closet back at my parent's house.  Took it out for this photo op and because I'm trying to get all of my systems out to play (and clean if they are looking like this)

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    #FanServiceFriday

    Well, Fan Service Friday is back.  Today actually being Black Friday of course...the day us Americans make asses of ourselves by mimicking the Running of the Bulls..except for reasons no more important than saving $50 on an item that will be $100 less in a few months anyways....and the bulls are people...and usually not as smart as the bulls.

    It's cold here in New York this time of year but this image by artist KKUEM will give you a glimpse of where you'd rather be this time of year in NY.

    Love this artist's work, the tone, color pallet and detail is nothing short of perfection.

    Here's a few more sample's of this person's work; visit their page for more pics.







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  • 11/25/12--22:38: Tenshi-Oni Splash Intro?


  • I was doing some editing in After Effects and Premier…saw this really cool template and thought it'd be great for an intro not only to the Tenshi-Oni game….but to any original content I make in general ^_^  The original had all text and blu particles… I changed them to red and yellow to symbolize Angel and Demon Fumi ^^

    I want to do better with the audio but for now, I just let youtube use one of their stock tracks.  Wish it would show in it's true HD form I see on my computer…but after a day of rendering and getting up to speed with these programs…it's time for bed. @_@


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    #MoeMonday

    Today's Cyber Monday and the return of the Moe Monday posts ^_^ As a special revival post… the image today is a compilation of two Tenshi-Oni sketches my fiancee Danielle made of Angel and Demon, as two separate human girls (which is part of the background story to the game).  Should have new game images and maybe some more gameplay soon as..well, I really want to get this game out already ^^;;

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    Today my fiancee Danielle made a separate youtube channel (PikaLove415) for game reviews and the like.  She does have a loved page full of AMVs at Yuna415, but with the worry of copyright trolls not adhering to Fair Use and just to have original content separate...it was best to make a separate page.

    Here's her first video reviewing the anime iPhone dating sim: Shall We Date


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  • 11/28/12--11:07: New Meme: Hipster Otaku


  • I simply had to make this (attempt) at a meme with the image of the new Nendoroid: Black Rock Shooter - Dead Master TV Animation Ver. figure.  Basically this explains my look back on 2012 as an anime fan.  I think many of you when looking at the rise of the Gangnam Style song and the popularity of the fanfiction-turned-novel 50 Shades of Gray...you'd had to have thought this.  The themes/content behind these popular icons of 2012 is nothing new to us otaku.

    Check out the QuickMeme page for this to make your own Hipster Otaku pic.


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    #FanserviceFriday 

    For this week's Fan Service Friday post...I'm posting yet another beach/bikini picture since well... it's freezing here in New York and we want our summer back already! T-T

    This is of course a picture of Sena Kashiwazaki from the anime Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai.  The artist of this picture is another awesome Pixiv artist,  珈琲貴族 

    To check out more of this artist's work, click here to view their pixiv page ^_^ (NSFWish)


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    #MoeMonday
    For today's entry for Moe Monday, here's this simply beautiful image of Sword Art Online's Asuna.  I'm one of the many keeping tabs on the series via Crunchy Roll.  Love it of course and glad to see the story begin to pick up again after the past few episodes.  Great series overall (I know, I need to read the light novels) and for me it holds a special place as a game designer and gamer.  The games showcased in this future world could very well become a reality ..and so could the issues brought about by having the ultimate goal of gaming fulfilled...the 100% immersive/Matrix-like world.

    Not sure who the artist is for this piece...found it on zerochan.  If you know the artist  leave a note or link in the comments below.

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  • 12/03/12--09:37: Tenshi-Oni: Menu Title Art

  • Ok, I think it's about time I give a little update about my game, Tenshi-Oni.  As game design goes, sometimes you think, "I'll be able to get this out in x months"...but it then turns out to be x+13 months.  For us indie game designers, this tends to be the case even more than the big studios.  Yet, I want to assure people waiting that I'm indeed working on the game and with some personal matters that got exponentially worse thanks to Hurricane Sandy last month now out of the way, it's time to get back on the track running.  Above you will see this interesting title art I made yesterday.  In addition to the programming aspect of games that I tend to focus on, it's also time I sharpen my actual design skills too.  Some of you might have seen the rough After Effects splash intro that I edited...so it's a bit evident that I'm trying to get back to the editing, design and art I once was not too bad with years ago.  The image above is the first look at what will be on the opening menu screen for the player.  Been getting used to using GlyphDesigner and having some fun with the customizations that can be done relatively easily for not only text in games but for websites and art.

    Below is some of the text I'm working on to go in the game since, well, (as my game design friend also pointed out) the text needs more styling.  One issue some indie games have is a bland/monotone HUD.  Being that I've been been very programming-heavy with my design (maybe more on that in a future post), sometimes artistic style takes a hit.  Now that the overall core dynamics of the game are set...it's time to polish this thing up.



    So what's next to do for the game?  Well, still a bunch and once my main artist, Kenneos gets back some free time during the holiday season...more art will come in...but I think it's in both our interest that I give a helping hand in the art department a little ^_^

    Here's a list of what's up next in the development:

    • Cocos2D source code bugs (almost all fixed ^_^)
    • Updated to latest iOS (done)
    • Combo bug fixes
    • memory leak fixes
    • updated sword animation
    • more sprite animations
    • more enemies
    • more bosses
    • better enemy AI (set up now for bosses)
    • updated opening menu (image above is part of that)
    • iPad Mini compatibility (got a friend helping out with that)
    Hope to show some more goodies from Tenshi-Oni.  I wanted the game out earlier but I think it's best that I make it right the first time and build it from there.  Again though, the goal is for a FREE version (with minor ads ^^;) and a paid version will all the bells and whiles and no ads.  With I have DLC?  Well, I'm an old school gamer and my idea of DLC is to have true add-ons, not Capcom-like DLC.  When you order spaghetti for example, you get the spaghetti with the sauce...some companies make it where the "sauce" is DLC when it should be part of the purchased deal.  DLC should be the appetizer dessert or extra course to the said "meal" and for Tensh-Oni, the goal is a full game for the paid version.

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    #FanserviceFriday

     Another week, another fan service pic.  As some of you may know, Tifa Lockhart is my favorite game/anime girl of all time....so of course I'll post awesome fan images of her from time to time.  Also, in the fashion of the past few weeks, I wanted to also promote specific fan artists and this lovely image of Final Fantasy's number one hand-to-hand fighter was done by Deviant Art artist, Drageta.

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