Hello fellow Nerds and Nerdettes! On this edition of the Nerd’s Against the World spotlight, I travel back to Canada and chat with rising artist Amanda Properzi(a.k.a. Panditty) We discussed how’d she got into drawing and who was her inspiration, we also get little peeks through out this article on her art style. Enjoy!

HiroTheGeek: Hey Amanda! So to start off, what part of the world you’re from fellow nerd?

Amanda: Winterfell, Canada…….(Alberta, Canada)

HiroTheGeek: (Laughs) Is is always cold up in the north?

Amanda: Not always, we get about 8 months of winter though – and usually March is when we become embittered and forget what’s it’s like to go outside and not have the wind hurt your face. The only benefit is we get to lord over all things winter and whenever someone complains about the cold we immediately pounce and tell them that they don’t know cold.

HiroTheGeek: Yeah I’m glad I’m in warmer weather (laughs)

Amanda: Lucky!!

HiroTheGeek: Since we’re spotlighting you and your work in art. What got you into drawing?

Amanda: I can’t tell you exactly when it started because I feel like I’ve always been drawing. In fact, after I got over wanting to be a Ninja Turtle, I wanted to be an artist. Somewhere along the way, I gave up on wanting to be an artist but I never stopped making art. I got a BA in Japanese and went to live in Japan. Part of the reason I left, was because I was feeling really lost. While I was there, some online friends convinced me to buy a tablet and the rest is history.

Pillow Fort

Amanda: It felt so right! I think it was that isolation and being in unknown territory that led me to find what was comfortable – which turned out to be art.

HiroTheGeek: While in Japan in all that isolation, was there anything specific that inspired you, In terms of art?

Amanda: Nothing in Japan per se, but as a result, I met a lot of inspiring people on the Internet.

HiroTheGeek: The power of the internet (laughs)

Amanda: Yeah, man!

HiroTheGeek: I’ve noticed in your drawings you also ink your own drawings. it’s rare for an artist to do both, is it easier for you to do everything in hand or Photoshop illustrator?

Amanda: When I started to focus on improving my art, I did everything in Photoshop. Now I’m trying to branch out and get better at penciling and inking by hand. I find now I have a preference for inking by hand with a brush pen. It looks more natural and organic to me – but you can do some pretty awesome stuff with digital brushes now!

Slender Hugs

Amanda: In doing so, my digital art has suffered. (laughs), I just can’t win! I need more hours in the day.

HiroTheGeek: We all need more hours in the day. (laughs) Your art style is the most unique most style I’ve seen. Have you thought about going into animation?

Amanda:That’s really flattering! I’d love to and have definitely thought about it.

HiroTheGeek: I know it’s a tough field of work to get into, have you ever look into it?

Amanda: Nothing past perhaps going to school for it and just playing around with creating animate gifs.

Space Bear!

HiroTheGeek: Working on anything now? Or do you have to kill me to know. (laughs)

Amanda: I have a few projects on the go! I’ll definitely post about them on twitter as they become more fleshed out.

HiroTheGeek: With comic book conventions coming up ever thought about setting yourself up at artist alley?

Amanda: Actually last year I had a booth at Edmonton Expo and I will have a booth again this year. It’s a great experience!

HiroTheGeek: Awesome! Finally if anyone would like to see more of your art were can they go? And how can fellow nerds find you?

Amanda: You can find me at panditty.com and @panditty on twitter

HiroTheGeek: Awesome and thanks Amanda for taking part in this.

Amanda: Thanks!

For more of Amanda Properzi you can also follow her on tumblr at amandaproperzi. Plus be sure to catch us on Facebook: Nerds Against the World and follow us on Twitter @NerdsVsWorld.

 

Veronica Mars movie promo

Marshmallows everywhere rejoiced this weekend! And in case you don’t know what that means, I’ll tell go ahead and tell you. Friday was the release of the insanely successful, controversial Kickstarter funded, fanatical return of Veronica Mars. The fans call themselves Marshmallows, and this movie was made for them. Okay well it was made for anyone, but mostly it was made for the fan base of the Veronica Mars TV series.

Fans dumped their spare change or perhaps even life savings (Somewhere I’m sure some overly passionate fan must have emptied their piggy bank) into the Kickstarter that revived the character of Veronica Mars (played by the adorable Kristen Bell) for a feature film. Did the film deliver for the fans? Speaking as a fan, hell yes it most definitely did. Can anyone enjoy this film without prior knowledge of the awesomeness of V. Mars? Yes I believe they can. Without knowing the awesomeness and past storylines of all of the returning characters, viewers can still enjoy this film as it is still a stand-alone story.

Veronica Mars EW

The reason that I fell in love with Veronica Mars on television was the witty almost-Whedonesque style dialogue. I’m happy to report that the movie dialogue is no different. The entire formula of the movie is so similar to that of the show, which makes it like a movie length extension of the show. The loveable characters, witty dialogue, Neptune vendettas and mystery are all present. It’s great to see the development of some of our favorite characters, while funny to see the expected lack of development in others. Yes Dick Casablancas, I’m mostly talking about you!

While I mentioned that anyone can enjoy the stand alone story, fans will enjoy the abundance of well-placed references and tie-ins to the show. The Veronica Mars movie is much like what Serenity offered the fans of Firefly—a great movie experience that can either be closure or a ticket to revisit the world of everyone’s favorite detective. To make things short, Rob Thomas and Kristen Bell don’t disappoint with this
film. Go see it now!

[Source pic credits: Theveronicamarsmovie.com]

On Tuesday night at the Sony CES press conference, the company  unveiled what could be the best idea from Sony, a streaming video game service called the PlayStation Now.

What this new service entails is this; with the PlayStation Now I have the chance to stream, own  and rent “classic” and current generation PlayStation 3 games on my PlayStation 4 and the PlayStation Vita, but also on smart phones, TV’s and tablets. The ability to play PS3 games on my PlayStation 4 is not only awesome, but it would really feel like I’m maximizing my PS4′s potential. So for today’s Top 5, we’re going to discuss what we like to see for the PlayStation Now and how they can implement the PlayStation network plus service with PSNow.

5. Please Connect to our PlayStation Plus Accounts

Screenshot_2014-01-10-11-01-07~2

So far right now there isn’t any news if Sony will connect our PSN and Plus accounts with PlayStation Now. Though it really would be in Sony’s best interest to implement this because we’ll be able to enjoy this service without having to purchase another yearly and monthly fees.

Screenshot_2014-01-10-11-01-27~2

With the yearly and monthly PSN Plus costing $49.99 and $17.00 respectively, maybe tacking on $10.00 to the fees can help Sony maximize revenue, just by making small changes.

4. Cross Gaming Platform Please?

Let's be friends!

Let’s be friends!

Since we now know that PlayStation Now will also be ported to smartphones, TV’s with WiFi capabilities, tablets and the new 2014 Sony BRAVIA TV(US Models), could we see Sony maybe working with others on maybe possibly game share on other consoles? Just think about it? Last of Us on the XboxOne or any classic PS3 games on another system that isn’t connected to the Sony brand. Though that’s probably asking for too much, but with Sony using the Gaikai advance cloud based service, I believe it can be very possible to share with the Xbox One.

3. PSclassics

When I think about the PlayStation Now, I think about the upcoming Steam box from Valve. The Steam box let’s us gamers play Valve vast library of games that’s over 250 games! Now so far Last of Us, God of War: Ascension and Beyond: Two Souls are confirmed right now that would be available for streaming on the PSNow. So when the term “classic PlayStation games” is being used, I’m curious to know if Sony is going to use the original PlayStation’s library of games at launch or the PlayStation 2? Now I would like to see them build up the library with some PSOne classics first, maybe some Final Fantasy VII, Crash Bandicoot, Legend of the Dragoons, you know just to name a few.

2. Developers Involvement.

Now we know that Naughty Dog, Quantum Dream and Santa Monica Studios are under SCE (Sony Computer Entertainment) publishing label but what about titles that are not published by Sony? Could we possibly we Ubisoft, Square Enix, Capcom, EA and Warner Bros. work with Sony on this new venture? Cause we all know at the end of the day money would be the deciding factor.

1. Pricing

Knowing the age old proverb is “If you can’t buy it, don get it” is only known in my house, but get familiar with it anyway. So what we do know about PlayStation Now is that it’s coming out this Summer, what we don’t know? How much it’s going to cost. Like I’ve said earlier, it would be wise for Sony to tack PSNow on to PSN Plus accounts so us gamers can have a better handle of subscription fees we pay. Yes there are a select few gamers out there who’s willing to pay subscription fees for PSN Plus, Final Fantasy 14 Online and pretty soon PlantSide and Elder Scrolls Online, so why not make it easier for us the consumer? We are going broke to support our daily habits?

Well we can’t know for sure what Sony has plan for this new streaming service until this Summer, but they are accepting people for beta testing, just click the link to find out how you can get in on the instant streaming early here: PlayStation Now Beta.

So what are you looking forward to from the PlayStation Now? Let us know in the comments below.

(PS One image source: Masonic Gamer)

Don’t Starve arrived on PlayStation 4 yesterday as free to play for Plus subscribers. I was excited to take this game for a spin because I am a fan of Minecraft. While it has some of the basic principles of Mojang’s Minecraft formula, there are notable differences.

Dont starve

Don’t Starve looks good visually and the theme gives you a cute and twisted Tim Burton feel. The music wasn’t bad, but honestly I ended up turning it down and tuning it out. The controls were decent, but there’s no tutorial so it’s basically just a guessing game.

Trophy hunters may be disappointed that not only is there not a platinum trophy, but also lacks any fun or creative trophies. Most trophies are just unlocking the different playable characters in the game. You seem to unlock characters based off how long you can survive.

There are monsters just like you would encounter in Minecraft, and the game starts you off in a creepy forest with one basic goal-to survive the night. The sad but challenging difference in the two games, is there’s no respawn in Don’t Starve. Once you die, all progress is lost and you must start completely over. This is a fun challenge to work for until you actually die and realize how permanent death is in the game. My first attempt I played cautiously, but still only lasted ten days. Just thinking about starting over was discouraging and I didn’t restart right away. This is a fun game to play when I have some free time to kill, but not a game I’d lose myself in for an entire day or evening.

[photo credits: dontstarvegame.com]

Happy New Year fellow Nerds and Nerdettes!!! Nerds Against the World’s very own Summer Doster (krazySlayer187) has published her very first novel! The Alliance: Bloodlines it’s an YA (Young Adult) urban fantasy novel that can be enjoyed by both teens and adults. The story is centered on a group of outcasts that all have become affected by a supernatural elements that plague their city. The group must also learn to work together and learn the important lesson of self-acceptance.

thealliance_bloodlines_cover1

For more about our very own author and the novel, you can visit her website www.sedoster.com or follow on Facebook to stay updated at SeDoster.

Looking to purchase the novel as well? You can find it on Amazon just search The Alliance: Bloodlines (Or click the link)  Check out the five star reviews for Bloodlines and see what readers are saying!

Strapped for cash thanks to the holidays? Then head over to Goodreads and become a member. Don’t worry it’s free to join! Visit the book’s page here: Goodreads: The Alliance. While you’re on Goodreads be sure to scroll down to where it says: Enter to win a copy of this book. It’s just a simple click and you’ll be entered for a chance to win a signed copy! While you’re on the page, add the book to your “Want to Read” or “Read” list to show your support for Bloodlines!

Don’t forget to share with friends and family! Show your support for a new author.

Hello fellow nerds and nerdettes! So Christmas came early for a lot of gamers who were able to score a PS4 at launch. I ordered my console bundle from Amazon and it arrived on launch day. Everything came packed in a package about the size a laptop would come in. The console itself could be described as a sleek, sexy, and sophisticated piece of Sony technology. Whew, that was a lot of Ss.

112113141128

It was a quick and easy setup. However, I did have a 1.5 hour wait to login due to psn crashing and a flood of people trying to login. I was able to download and play games with little issues on day one. My other issue after login was that the store kept crashing for me so I had to wait to enter my psn codes later that evening. I felt I was pretty patient and too excited to really be mad at the little details. I was playing online games with my friends by midnight.

The weekend was a little frustrating with chat volume issues, but those seemed to be resolved on Monday. I was able to play Call of Duty: Ghosts with absolutely no issues that normally plague a new COD release. (No party issues, lag, or connection problems) And all the other games that I’ve tried have been running pretty smoothly as well. I tried out as many games and feature as I could and here is the full the breakdown…

I am enjoying the new interface for PS4 and the new party chat system. It’s great to be able to stay on my game and still go into settings and other options. Everything moves smooth and lacks the laggy frustration of the PS3 XMB. Messages from friends can easily be read with a click of a button, no matter what you are currently doing on your PS4. However, the one thing missing is an option to “delete all” for your messages and notifications. I hope Sony addresses that in a patch soon because it can be irritating to delete messages one by one after a day of chatting with friends. The notifications don’t disappear when you accept game and chat invites so those are also left to be deleted one at a time.

In my opinion the DualShock 4 is still an unattractive controller, but it feels completely sexy in my hands. It truly is an ergonomically superior controller. I love that I can play games for hours and it never becomes uncomfortable to hold. The triggers feel great for shooters unlike the R2 & L2 buttons on the DualShock 3. The Options button is literally just a Start button that’s been renamed Options lol. The touchpad hasn’t had much use for me except to tap and bring up a scoreboard in game. Of course the touchpad is large so it is easy to reach and tap quickly in a heated match of Call of Duty, but I’d like to see more use for it in the future.

112113144320

The mono chat headset that comes included with console is not quite as useless as the wasted plastic that came packaged with Xbox 360s. I know several friends who are using the ear bud chat device since their previous headset was not compatible. I can hear them pretty clearly with only minor feedback/background noise.

As for the Vita connectivity, I found the remote play option to be fully functional. It can easily be linked with your PS4 to use as a controller or to play your PS4 games. The Vita navigates around on the PS4 just as smoothly as your DualShock4 would. I tried a few games with the remote play feature. Resogun played quite well, but for FPS games I found it to be slightly less desirable. The games look just as fantastic on the Vita screen, but didn’t quite feel comfortable with the controls. I prefer my DualShock4 for more precise FPS aiming, and because it obviously lacks the same button options as the controller.

I linked my PS4 with my Twitch account and tested out the streaming capabilities. Sony has made it unbelievably easy to stream your gameplay. Now that my account is linked, it is literally just a push of the Share button to live stream my game. The feedback that I got from viewers was mostly all positive, and with my wired connection I didn’t experience any in game lag. Of course that will all depend on the awesomeness of your internet connection.

Overall I think the PS4 launch was a great success. I know I was thankful not to have experienced any of the major problems that were reported by other gamers, but those numbers seem relatively small compared to the number of PS4s sold. This was my first launch console, but I already assumed that there would be some issues with a major console launch like this. With a 5 star rating I would give Sony’s PS4 launch a well deserved 4.

As much as I love to read print, I found that it would get a lot more comics for my money if I just gave in and purchased a digital subscription. I received money for my Birthday to pay for a year subscription to Marvel Unlimited Plus. Woohoo! Now Marvel has a few options for those wanting to try a digital subscription. You can test drive Marvel Unlimited for $9.99 a month or choose an annual subscription starting at $69 a year for the basic annual subscription.

I purchased the Plus subscription for $99 which comes with the annual digital subscription, a limited edition Hasbro 6” Variant Ultron figure, an exclusive variant copy of AGE OF ULTRON #10, and a personalized member card packaged in a beautiful comic box with Age of Ultron art. You also receive discounts at MarvelStore.com as well as digital purchases.

The box art really is beautiful!

The box art really is beautiful!

2013-09-23_00-03-51_168

Marvel boasts that it currently has over 13,000 comics available for readers on Marvel Unlimited. The selection is great and includes both classic and newly released comics. They even have a mobile app so you can read your comics anywhere and on the go!

I do have a few complaints with the subscription. You have a “library” where you can add issues on your reading list. I can only seem to add individual issues, which means if I want to add a series, I must add each individual issue of that series. One by frakking one. Also once I finish reading an issue, if I want to continue with the next issue in the series, I must go back and search for that issue. It needs a feature to automatically recommend the next issue in a series.

There definitely are some improvements that could be made to make it more user friendly, but overall Marvel Unlimited seems to be a great deal if you are looking to catch up on a ton of great comics. Just make sure to choose the tier that best fits your budget.