Anime ABC’s – T Voting Round

Spoiled for Choice!

The 20th round is started folks! The “T” round has a lot of excellent options, which I curated down to a manageable number of shows. Remember, if a show is missing from the list, be sure to consult my alphabetized list of everything I’ve ever discussed here. If you don’t see it there, go ahead and vote for it using the “Other” option. Encourage other folks to vote for it as well, it could always win! Finally, you can catch up with the latest review in the series covering Silver Spoon here.

Anime ABC’s S Voting Round Link <- Click Me!

Voting is open from today until 7/31/19 11:59 PM as usual.

Not Sure What Anime ABC’s Is?

Anime ABC’s is a fun community focused event that I run here at Jon Spencer Reviews. Any and all people can participate in this event, even if you know nothing about anime! So how exactly does this all work? It’s simple! Just follow the link above and vote for as many of the listed shows (or provide your own) that seem interesting to you. Each round moves to the next letter in the alphabet, so the current “T” round is the twentieth anime ABC’s. This is done to keep things interesting and to allow for more variety with each passing round.

The goal of this series is to encourage community input, interaction, as well as to allow me to discover cool new shows, or in some cases, rediscover ones that I previously watched. You can check out my previous ABC reviews for:

Be sure to click on any of the titles listed above (you can’t click on the pictures below, the link thing doesn’t work in a collage) to see what a finished product will look like!

What are you waiting for? Vote now and have your say in what anime I review next!

Advertisements

Anime ABC’s S is for Silver Spoon

Finding One’s Self

Silver Spoon is about a boy named Hachiken who doesn’t really know what he wants to do with himself. In middle school he was pushed to perform at the top of his class by his parents, and as a result, lost himself in the process. Now in high school, he has chosen to enroll in a school as far away as possible. The problem? A city kid now living the farming lifestyle isn’t easy! Continue reading “Anime ABC’s S is for Silver Spoon”

What I’m Watching – Summer 2019 Impressions

Summer is Stacked!

I’m watching way more than normal for the Summer 2019 season so I thought I’d put up a list of everything I’m watching and give a little bit of a first impression for each show. Held off on doing this for a week because I added a few more shows that hadn’t started airing. The list is 10 shows long with one held over from the last season, so let’s dive right in! Continue reading “What I’m Watching – Summer 2019 Impressions”

AniTwit Watches – Tonari no Seki-kun: The Master of Killing Time (Announcement)

Heya Folks!

Image result for tonari no seki kun animeI am starting up a fun project to do with the Twitter community, but I’d also like to extended the invitation out to WordPress folks as well! The project is called AniTwit Watches, where folks come together to discuss and watch an older anime alongside seasonal stuff. This season is PACKED so we decided to go with a short show called, Tonari no Seki-kun: The Master of Killing Time.

The purpose of this project is to encourage discussion of older shows along with discussion. This inaugural anime was chosen because it is easy to get into, legally available on multiple platforms for free, and it doesn’t add to seasonal folk’s plates too much. Plus, Tonari no Seki-kun is a really fun show!

Here’s the plan. Every Monday starting 7/22/19, we are all joining up to watch 3 episodes of the anime. Each episode is 7 minutes, so that is 21 minutes of watching a week. You decide when on Monday you watch them, so we won’t all be on at the same time literally. Then on Twitter with the hashtag, #AniTwitWatches, talk about the show with each other. That’s it!

Feel like writing posts? Awesome! You can do that as well and I’ll promote them for you as long as you tweet ’em out with the hashtag and/or @ me (@JS_Reviews). This is totally optional though. That said, I’d love to see some awesome posts, even if it is just a series review.

Once the show is over, which will take 7 weeks for us on this one, I’ll organize another watch if this one is successful. That’s the plan and I hope you’ll join in with us! It’ll be a lot of fun 😀

Hero Kids – Mini Review

Getting Kids into Role-playing

Image result for hero kidsDo you have kids or spend time with any ever? Want to share the joys of role-playing with them but just don’t know how? Look no further than Hero Kids! For kids as young as 4 all the way up to around 10, Hero Kids will offer you a simple and fun game that kids will beg you to play. Not only that, but it is perfect for busy parents as well with easy setup and not a long playtime.

The first thing that makes Hero Kids something I’d recommend over other child-friendly games is the fact that it transitions well into bigger games when the time comes. You love D&D? Great! It’ll get your kido ready by building concepts slowly here.

Image result for hero kids
An example of how you can expand the game

Another reason is that the game is flexible. You can make things more, or less, complex depending on the needs of your child as they develop. I’ve already mentioned that things are easy to manage parent-side, so this isn’t really any extra work either! Personally, I spend about 10-20 minutes getting a game ready and play only takes an hour at the absolute most.

Need more info still? I encourage you to check out my monthly posts over on Reddit (I use the same Jon Spencer Reviews handle there). I explain in great detail how I took a group of kids of widely varying ages, and zero play experience, and got them hooked on Hero Kids. I also give tips and advice alongside this, which can help with children’s activities, even outside of tabletop gaming.

Hero Kids is very affordable at $5.99 for the base book, but I would go all out and get the everything bundle if this interests you. It is great value, and better yet, if you decide to upgrade beyond PDF, you’ll get a 50% off coupon. Additionally, future content is free for you as well!

This is a great game and I really love it. The benefits of role-playing are really great so I encourage you to give them the gift of Hero Kids. Not only will they love you for it, but you will have fun too! That’s a win-win in my book.


Have you heard of Hero Kids? What role-playing games do you play with the kids in your life? I’d love to hear all about it in the comments! If you want to support my work, consider a donation with my Ko-fi button below. Thanks for reading!

Hikaru no Go – A Rare Kind of Show

Seriously, You Should Watch This

Related imageIt’s incredibly rare for a show to follow its characters over the course of several years, really letting you see how they grow and develop. That’s exactly what you get with Hikaru no Go. If I had to compare the 2001 title to anything, it would be March Comes in like a Lion, but where that show is about the game of Shogi, placing more emphasis on events outside the game, this is about the ancient game of Go with a more traditional sports anime format. Spanning 75 exciting episodes, you’ll find yourself deeply invested even if you don’t know a thing about Go itself. Continue reading “Hikaru no Go – A Rare Kind of Show”

Nadia: Secret of Blue Water – 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea… in SPACE!

Classic Gainax & Great!

If you know much about me, you’d know that my relationship with Gainax studios is a rocky one at best. While they have produced some great shows that I really enjoyed (Eva, Gurren Lagann, His and Her Circumstances), they have produced, more often than not, shows that I just couldn’t get into. Whether it be for subject matter, a lack of an ending, or something else, I just am not a fan overall. However, when something does land, it really does. That’s the case with today’s review:  Nadia: Secret of Blue Water. Continue reading “Nadia: Secret of Blue Water – 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea… in SPACE!”

One Punch Man Season 2 – Mini Review

That’s it?

Image result for one punch man season 2Back in Fall 2015 a show called One Punch Man seemed to take the world by swarm. It wasn’t until a little while later that I finally gave it a shot with the TV dub, and while a lot of criticism had been heaped on to the show at that point, I still really enjoyed it. The highlight for me was The Deep Sea King arc, which you can read all about in my review of the first season here. When I heard this would get a second season, especially one that was less focused on Saitama, I thought that would be perfect, because the show was always at its best when he wasn’t the focus of the show.

However, expectations do not always live up to reality. The changes from season one to the second season of One Punch Man could be felt throughout the community long before it aired. This cast a long shadow of doubt on the anime before it even had a chance at success. Still, I remained hopeful in spite of some troubling signs.

It was until the Spring 2019 season when I was finally granted the opportunity to watch it as it aired that my hope for something great was slowly diminished. Now, don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t like One Punch Man’s second season was terrible, but it was a huge disappointment.

As promised, the focus was taken away from Saitama and interesting ideas were sometimes given an opportunity to peek through all of the mediocrity. This, just wasn’t enough though.

Normally I’m not one to harp too much on animation, but there was a lot of lazy work going on here. One episode even uses footage from the first season and you can really see just how bad the second season is in comparison. I wouldn’t even necessarily say the second season was really all that bad in this department overall, but these reminders, which were frequent enough, absolutely didn’t do this any favors. It was like the anime wanted to invite this mark against it.

Image result for one punch man season 2 garou and kid

The writing was pretty bad this time around too. Outside of Garou, there was almost no exploration of what it means to be a hero that had any impact at all. His character was interesting because Garou fights for the villains. That said, he manages to form this bond with a kid, and through some good use of flashbacks, you can really sympathize with his position. Agree with it? No, probably not, but understand and even think he isn’t that bad of a person deep down; absolutely, with ease.

I could go on, but it would just be me talking about how this felt like such an inferior product in every way. A hollow imitation at the best of times, and a miserable experience at the worst of times. Everything that made One Punch Man fun and interesting in the first season glimmers deep beneath the surface here, but it just can’t break through the mire of mediocrity in its wake. Not worth totally passing up on if you are a fan, but expect to be disappointed.


Were your thoughts different than mine for OPM season 2? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments! If you would like to support my writing by giving a small donation (helps a lot), you can do so via the Ko-fi button below. Thanks for stopping by and I hope to see ya again real soon!

The Rising of the Shield Hero – Finding Something Worth Fighting For

Another Isekai, Am I Right?

Image result for shield heroJokes aside, when The Rising of the Shield Hero started in Winter 2019 it quickly caught my attention. Opening with an hour long episode, and what seemed to be an anti-hero story, I couldn’t help but get excited! However, what the show actually became was a lot more. Despite some missteps, this became one of the better shows I watched in both the Winter and Spring 2019 season. Continue reading “The Rising of the Shield Hero – Finding Something Worth Fighting For”

Into the Woods… – A Solo Role-playing Game I Made!

Play it for Free!

Edited 7/7/19 to reflect the update to the final version 2.1!

I’ve already announced this on Twitter, but I figured I should make a formal announcement here. Into the Woods… is a solo role-playing game I created in a one month time period for the Never Alone Jam on itchi.io. This was something I did mostly for fun, but I wanted to challenge myself to see if I could create a fun and engaging role-playing experience for one. So, what exactly is this game?

Overview

You’ve lived in these woods for many years. It’s treated you well all this time. The passing of each season has brought with it great beauty, but it has also presented unique hardships. Still, you managed to always make do and survive. Lately, you’ve noticed the forest has begun to change as less people dare to venture into this serene, magical place. Now only the Hunters rarely cross your path. This doesn’t bother you though, you’ll always do as you have and survive.

-The game’s page

Into the Woods… is a solo tabletop role-playing experience that tasks you with surviving a full year in an ever-evolving forest. There will be magic, whimsy… and of course, danger! As the year progresses, the challenges you face will grow but you’ll have to overcome that adversity in order to survive.

What’s in the Box?

Included is a 39 58 page rulebook that’s been totally revamped since the original publication of this article. Featuring several tables for everything from encounters to bonuses, a bestiary, and convenience features to make playing a smooth process. Despite the game being simple and the rules fitting on about 10 pages, there is a lot of content packed into this with room to grow. You’ll find that there is a decent amount of variety here that should allow you at least a few hours of fun.

What You’ll Need

To play Into the Woods… you’ll need a standard deck of 52 playing cards, a pencil and some paper, a journal or recording medium of preference, at least one six-sided die (two would probably be better, ideally in different colors if possible), and these rules.

Download it here!

Everything above this can be found on the game’s page where you can also download the game absolutely free! If you have a good time, I do suggest a donation because I put a lot of effort into this, but it isn’t required. You can do that on the game’s page or use my Ko-fi button below. Either is fine. I do ask, that you do rate and share the game if you can even if you don’t want to donate as that helps me out a lot!

Hope you have fun with the game and I eagerly await your feedback! Best of luck to you as you travel, Into the Woods…


Normally I’d write up some questions and such for you here. Just providing my Ko-fi link and wishing you an excellent day! 🙂