Entries From the Dead: Urusei Yatsura (2022)

I’ve seen my fair share of anime series in the last ten years. In fact, it’s been just over ten years since I began to consume anime at a severely unhealthy pace (previously referred to as my “Anime Renaissance”). In that time, all sorts of characters have flashed before my eyes (“flash” being a deliberate term), but one that always stuck out to me by virtue of its absurdity was Lum from Urusei Yatsura, what with her tiger-striped bikini and boots combo, shiny blue-green hair, and horns.

Then, about a year ago, I got wind that Urusei Yatsura would be getting a modern-day anime adaptation, just over thirty years after the original series began airing. “Okay,” I thought to myself. “This would be a good chance to see just what the series is all about with a nicer sheen to its presentation.” Granted, I had some hesitation about a reboot of a cult classic, though with no real affection for the first series, I went into this with basically no expectations. May as well try it out.

I lasted one episode.

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Thoughts on In Stars And Time (Steam Next Fest Demo)

It truly is the era of quirky RPG games… and farming sims… and 2D collectathon platformers… Y’know, there is a lot from every type of genre if you think about it. Anyway, I came across this latest RPG adventure by chance while going through the #SteamNextFest tag on Twitter. In Stars And Time, as its title would suggest, has a lot to do with stars (the characters) and time (time-loop antics). Immediately taking to the expressive art style of the game, I decided to give the demo a go.

It truly is the era of… no, I won’t make the time-loop joke in text.

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Thoughts on Cassette Beasts (Steam Next Fest Demo)

It did not take much convincing from Cassette Beasts for me to be completely all-in on its synopsis. A turn-based RPG game where you explore a 2.5D world of monsters that you can collect and fuse? I’ve been wanting that in a mainline Pokémon title for years! All the better that the pixel artistry and promise of intense character customization drive home the uniquely expressive part of great RPG games.

Though I had no specific ranking for which game demos I was most excited for, this was one I was very intrigued by. Will it live up to the promise that its trailer showcased?

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Thoughts on Vernal Edge (Steam Next Fest Demo)

Story time: Back in 2020, I was a games journalist for KeenGamer. One day in June, I decided, “Hey, I like giving some publicity to indie games. Let’s write a post on games I think are worth checking out on Kickstarter!” So I did. Among the games in that article was none other than Vernal Edge, which is, assuming you read the title, the subject of today’s post.

What was the point of that information? Just to showcase that I’ve known of this game’s existence for a couple years now. It’s been a long time coming, but I’m finally able to try it out for myself in demo form.

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Thoughts on Dewdrop Dynasty (Steam Next Fest Demo)

Prior to learning of the existence of Dewdrop Dynasty, I would have never imagined a scenario in which you play as a bee with a gun would fit well into the search-action (metroidvania) genre. Thankfully, the game’s demo has given me hope in a future in which the world’s worst insect carrying America’s most debated-upon tool can prove to be a fun venture. Have I mentioned that I despise bees?

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Aharen-san wa Hakarenai Series Review – Episode 11

Influenced by the events of the last near-month, I am not going to take any chances. I’m going to watch and write on these episodes at a relatively quick pace from now on… even though there’s only a single episode left after this one.

After an incredibly emotional (and ambiguous) end to the prior episode, episode eleven of Aharen-san returns the viewer to the semi-absurd monotony that the series has followed since the beginning. To its credit, some return to normalcy (relative term) could be good after the high-drama detour taken. Still, there’s a strange effect from the result of the main duo’s deepening relationship that imbues this episode (and likely the next) with a coat of alienation.

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Aharen-san wa Hakarenai Series Review – Episodes 8-10

What an eventful last couple weeks it has been. My sincere apologies for the delay in reviewing these episodes. It seems to have been ordained by some higher power that I am not deserving of gaining access to a workable laptop computer. Nevertheless, I will spare you the details and simply get on to what you’re more likely here for.

Seeing as I have three episodes here to review, I will split these up into groups and review them individually (but won’t go into too much detail). As will become obvious when the reviews begin, the relevancy of these episodes will heavily depend on their recency.

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Aharen-san wa Hakarenai Series Review – Episode 7

It’s a double whammy of unfortunate circumstances this week for me. My laptop troubles are continuing to haunt me (long story), and on top of that, some cold-like symptoms have found refuge within since the beginning of the week. So I’m writing this with limited battery capacity and limited nostril clearance.

This, combined with the contents of Aharen-san‘s seventh episode itself, will force me to keep this rather curt.

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