29 April 2009

Utada Hikaru - This Is The One

Close-up photo of her face as the album covers, just like the previous albums.

I know it's the first time i posted about songs, but well... I'm a fans of Utada Hikaru songs and i think i should post about this. Actually, i can't say I'm a real fans, because i never try to stay update with news about her and her songs. While everyone is busy hearing K-ON singles, i kinda stuck on this album.

Recently my bro told me about Utada Hikaru new hit song called "Come back to me", i tried and checked, and i found out about this. Her new English album: This Is The One. FYI, Utada Hikaru launched 2 types of albums, English and Japanese. I already followed Utada Hikaru's songs since First Love, Deep River, Ultra Blue, Heart Station, and Exodus. I really like her voice!

Oh... and not to forget, i don't know much about music, all i do is just enjoy the music if it's a great song, so please forgive me if i'm wrong on giving a personal thought about the music. And oh yeah... don't expect download links here, just google it somewhere else.

So here's the complete track list, also with my personal thought about the song:
1. On and On [3:19] : pretty much cool, she sings this with somewhat whispering voice effect.

2. Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence -FYI : you know, FYI in the title is really part of the title, and she really sings it "FYI... we're gonna be up all nite" (i think that's the lyric). It's a nice song, but i still don't know what's the meaning of the title. Anyway, the intro really deceiving, i thought it was AIR OST XD .

3. Apple and Cinnamon : "Chemistry is like Apple and Cinnamon", well... that's song for you. I don't really like this song, but oh well...

4. Taking My Money Back : "now i finally see you were using me, now i taking my money back", still don't get it... and no, this song's still not in my "like list".

5. This One (Crying Like a Child) : in this song, you can feel Utada's low pitched voice which is cool to hear.

6. Automatic Part II : i don't know if this a continuation of the old Automatic, but i know this song is still as cool as the old Automatic, except it's not as energetic as the old one.

7. Dirty Desire : in this song, you can really hear Utada sings a song with ero effects added to her voice. Well.. just as the name implies, dirty desire.

8. Poppin' : enjoy Utada's high pitched voice here. It's a pretty cool song.

9. Come Back to Me : the best song in the album, started with a cool piano, and then the real song start. In this song, she cheated her lover and asked her to come back to her and let her make up for her mistake. This song is my favorite song in this album.

10. Me Muero : the last song before the bonus track, it's pretty much normal, but not in my "like list".

The next 2 tracks are bonus tracks. You'll here 2 version of remixed Come Back to Me, and they're really cool! You should try it.

Well... that's all for a somewhat short post for today. Find it and get it (by downloading it or buy it), listen to it, and let me hear how you feel here. See you!

28 April 2009

Crossbone Gundam

Crossbone Gundam - full armor (anti beam coating).

Ouch... it seems the last post doesn't take too many attention, and i think this post will be as unpopular as that post. So, yeah... let's just move on to the content.

This is Crossbone Gundam, and this post will be filled only with pictures and small rants, because i just want to take a photoshoot of this Crossbone Gundam, and also fulfill my bro's request of Crossbone photos. Actually, I've also done a photo of Nyx at the same session with Crossbone, so just expect Nyx as the next figure photos post.

Crossbone Gundam without armor, looks dull and too thin.

I don't know where Crossbone Gundam came from, or the origins, or whatever. My bro's also doesn't know where it came from. My bro decided to buy this Gundam because this Gundam is full of cool weaponry. Too bad this Gundam can't really stand firm and hold its weapons strong enough.

Well, I'll stop ranting here and let all this photos do the talking...

Pretty scary face.

This plane as the cockpit, works just like Force Impulse.

And this how it looks when that small cockpit plane attached on the body.

The coolest weapon, crossbow.

The cutlass, a must have weapon for space pirate!

The scary giant sword, kinda hard to make Crossbone holds it tight.

A whip and... what?

The cutlass hilt combined with the pistol can be transformed into a sniper rifle, and also with beam shield.

A "pirate-style" shaped gun, another must have for a pirate, and also a normal beam saber.

Well... that's a short post for today, so... see you at the next post!

24 April 2009

Akane-iro ni Somaru Saka

Akane-iro ni Somaru Saka.

Yeah... time for another anime review. It's Akane-iro ni Somaru Saka. This series is... well... your typical harem anime, based on the eroge. Before we continue on for more, just be warned:
So, just watch out and do proceed if you know the risks. If you don't want to be spoiled, just see the pictures a little and just skip to the last paragraph.

Wow, so many beautiful girls.

Well, as you can guess, this anime is a harem anime, so you'll see so many beautiful and sexy girls with various personality surrounding 1 guy. The lucky bastard is called Nagase Junichi, a high school boy, and former delinquent known as Geno Killer. The story revolves around Junichi and some girls who are in love with him.

The story began with Junichi, saved a rich girl but he forgot to ask her name. The next day, she transferred in to Junichi's school, and i think this is what's called destined meeting. And sometime around that day, Junichi kissed the girl, Katagiri Yuuhi. Soon after that, she also moved in to Junichi's house and live with him because she said that she's her fiancee. Actually, the engagement was decided by their parents. So right from here, starts a new romance tsundere life for Junichi with Yuuhi and Minato.

Yuuhi is pretty angry because she was kissed at the first place. The first time she met Junichi, she's still pretty nice. I kinda surprised that Yuuhi is tsundere and her seiyuu is actually the queen of tsundere, Kugimiya Rie. Harem anime plot is pretty much predictable, and in the end you can easily guess that Junichi has to decide which girl to get.

Nagase Minato, a loving sister complete with brother complex <- the ending girl.

First, let's talk about the chosen one, Nagase Minato. Yeah... she's the chosen one, because well... she's the "anime ending girl" (I've told you before, SPOILERS about ENDING). Minato is Junichi's little sister, but not by blood. Minato lived with her brother since junior high school.

She's a pretty smart, kind, and caring girl. She knew almost everything, but she was forced to hold her feeling from the first Junichi met Yuuhi until the last episode. Yeah... she's the type that "I'll let myself suffers while my brother and Yuuhi lived happily". But in the end, she's the one Junichi chose. Eventhough she's cute and her seiyuu is Hirano Aya, i kinda don't like her for some reasons, like:
1. Brother - sister complex, i don't like it.
2. Let her suffers on her own while keeping her feeling herself.
But yeah, nobody will object if i say Nagase Minato is super cute!

Katagiri Yuuhi, the tsundere ojou-sama <- my fav.

Katagiri Yuuhi, is the main character and the ending girl ... i thought at the first time. Yuuhi is your typical tsundere princess with some ojou-sama attitude, stubborn, but she's serious about her love. I like her, and she's my favorite girl in this anime. She looks kinda stupid at the beginning of the anime, but in the end, she's the one who discovered about Minato's feeling toward Junichi.

Most of the episodes of this anime will revolves around Junichi and Yuuhi, with their very own Tsundere scenes. They lived together as engaged couple, but everyday for them is just filled with angry Yuuhi and sometimes deredere Yuuhi. It's pretty interesting and funny to watch this, but yeah... all Yuuhi fans will be disappointed with the ending....

Kiryuu Tsukasa, a wannabe seiyuu photographer.

Kiryuu Tsukasa, in the anime, she's just a side character, but in the game, she's one of the girl you can choose. Tsukasa is also one of the girl who loved Junichi. She aimed to become a seiyuu. But yeah... as this anime itself revolves around Yuuhi and Minato, she only got 1 episode special just for her. The episode is about Tsukasa tried to become a seiyuu and failed, that's all. But yeah... that's how a side character live in an anime. XP

Shiina Mitsuki, the super cheerful and popular student council.

Shiina Mitsuki, the popular student council in the school. Everyone loves her, but not Junichi (in the anime). Well... her roles in the anime is just to support Junichi and made Junichi got involved in some mess, no more than that. She's a cheerful and cute girl, but well... yeah that's all for her. I think the anime version provides no loves for side characters, haha.... XD

Shiraishi Nagomi, the weirdest girl in this anime.

Yet another supporting character, Shiraishi Nagomi. Eventhough she doesn't have much role in the anime, she actually has a very important role in the ending. She told Minato (and Junichi, i think) to take action and something like that. In the anime, she just looked like she's spying on Junichi-Yuuhi-Minato's life and reported the results to someone else. She's just cool, loli, but not very interesting, i guess....

Tachibana Mikoto, the random assistant.

You can call her a random girl if you want, but she's Tachibana Mikoto. I can't believe that i just knew her name after browsing some pics in Danbooru. She only appeared in the anime for a very few times, and i think she became Mitsuki's assistant. This girl is actually one of the girl you can choose from the game, but in the anime she has fewer role than Ayanokouji Karen, while in the game, you can't even pick Karen as your girl.

I'm sorry to tell you that i won't get into Karen, 'cause well... she's just too boring, with her ojou-sama attitude.

Full of fanservice, very nice!

It's pretty much your love triangle anime, where in the end, the guy has to decide who's to take. Personally, i want Junichi date Yuuhi and probably just get married anyway. But the anime said otherwise.

Oh yeah... i forgot to tell you that you'll get some fanservices in this anime. Just imagine how those girls looked like in yukata, party dress, school uniform, Yuuhi in maid, onsen scene, school swimsuit, nekomimi, tennis suit with mini skirt, bloomer, and whatever kind of moe fanservices you can get. XD

Good? You decide!

If you're looking for a light romance with comedy, Akane-iro ni Somaru Saka is a good choice for you, especially if you're a fans of Hirano Aya. Overall, this anime is good, i think i gave it an 8 out of 10 in MAL (i forgot).

So yeah... that's all for now.... and as always look forward for the next post!

20 April 2009

Surabaya Anime and Toys Festival

Surabaya Anime and Toys Festival.

Okay, and we're back to another anime figure event in Surabaya. This is Surabaya Anime and Toys Festival. This event was held in 9 - 18 April 2009, more than 1 week, pretty long for an event, and was held in ITC - Surabaya. Don't be fooled by the photo above, they're band members who're participating in this band competition, singing anisongs.

Too bad, they only sung Naruto songs and they were totally sucks! They sung horrible songs like Haruka Kanata, and all they do were just screaming s**t. Well... anyway, let's move on to the event coverage.

Worst event so far IMO...

This the worst event I've ever been in my life. First, the number of the participants aren't that many, unlike the previous events. Next, the participants theirselves aren't very interesting IMO. They mainly sold American toys and Naruto s***s.

Small number of PVC figures here...

Every time i found a stack of Japanese PVC figures, i took a picture of it. Here's an example. You can see some old stocks here. MaxFact's Mai, Simca, Nendo Ryuuku (probably fake), and some other things. See the other things around, the only things you'll find are only Warcraft, Spawn, and other American toys.

Dominated by American toys.

Still the same store, but only different angle. Not very interesting for me. But yeah... Indonesia collectors are mainly American toys collector. I never met any Japanese PVC figures collectors around.

ToyMagZ store.

Next, move on to ToyMagZ store. ToyMagZ is the most popular toy collection magazine in Indonesia. But can you guess what's inside? Yeah... mostly American toys, SIC, One Piece / Bleach / Naruto, and some robot plastic kits like Gundam. This magazine contents really reflect Indonesian collectors main interests.

Gunpla, American toys, One Piece figures, and some magazine copies.

In their store, they sold their magazine copies, Gundam and some other robot kits, American Toys, and One Piece figures (POP). They have some nice Gundam kits, but i didn't ask the price. There were some nice kits like Infinite Justice MG, Shinanju MG ver KA, Launcher Sword Strike MG, etc.

Wajuwa store, my fav.

If you have ever read my previous event coverage, you should recognize this store. This desk actually belonged to Wajuwa, my favorite Japanese PVC store. Too bad, this time they still sold the same things as before, only few addition here like Haruhi and Mikuru live figures from Sega.

There were 3 new Nendos.

I think I've seen these figmas in the previous event (the one that took 11 days, forgot the name). But those Nendos are new, except Nendo Melisa Seraphy. There were Nendo Tsukasa, Nendo Miyuki, and Nendo Maritan. I've seen Maritan in Vixion's Nendo Theatre, and it's pretty cute!

Wajuwa's rack, still the same collection.

This rack also belonged to Wajuwa. But still, the collection was just the same as previous event. Vita was still there, and also Alter's Mitsuru, Koto's Clalaclan white and noir version. Not very interesting for me though.

Wajuwa still has the same display here, so here are some photos of their display:

Emma Ai, forgot the manufacturer.

Bamboo Blade's Tama-chan, from Kotobukiya.

Another Blood, manufactured by Max Fact (maybe... XD)

Art community.

I forgot the name, but this stand is special stand. They are a Japanese based art class and community. They made papercrafts, manga, and some nice artworks. People here can look at their works, or join their community if they want to.

More photos below, mostly about their papercraft works:

Keroro and some other character papercraft.

I think these were their masterpieces.

Zeta Gundam.

Hi Nu Gundam - the best so far IMO.

Axioo (Laptop manufacturer) stand.

I don't know what the committee of this event think about but they also take axioo (laptop manufacturer) as the sponsor and let them open a stand here. I don't know the direct connection between laptop and Anime - toys, but i guess putting laptop stand here is a pretty bad idea.

This time is Zyrex.

There were 2 laptop manufacturers open stands here. They were Axioo and Zyrex. Maybe the committee of this event was short on budget and need a desperate money from the sponsor, so they took these laptop manufacturers as the sponsor. XD

Well.. that's it for the coverage. Overall this is a bad event, and i didn't buy anything from here, so don't expect any loot. Just wait for another anime review, figure photoshoots, and figure hauls. So... see you at the next post!

15 April 2009

Yagami Hayate - Alter

Yagami Hayate.

While everyone already doing their review on Haruhi Gekisou version, I'm still stuck on editing Hayate's photos which already stacked in the last March. I've done this photo session in March, but I'm too busy just for editing the photos and doing this post, so i pushed myself to find a spare time for editing and writing.

Anyway, this is Yagami Hayate, from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS (eveyone should know her), manufactured by Alter. This is so far... the most expensive figure i have in my collection.

Manufactured by Alter.

Alter sure is amazing for this past months, starting from May 2008. And in this year 2009, Alter never cease to amaze us with their masterpieces, like Fate Sonic form, Nanoha with her ultimate form (forgot the name), etc. And i, as Alter fan, will keep collecting figures from Alter. Hayate is one example of Alter's masterpiece, and i think this figure was the first great move Alter did in figure world.

Meister des nachthimmels.

In Nanoha StrikerS, Hayate has a small number of action scene, and she's stuck on her office work most of the time. While she has the lowest battle scene compared to Fate and Nanoha, her battle jacket, skills, rank, power, devices, and whatever power she has are beyond amazing, even more than Fate and Nanoha IMO (please... no offense to Fate and Nanoha fans). This figure gives Hayate a chance to show up in community, and makes us realize how great she is.

Sorry, only normal form here.... no unison form and no Rein.

This figure has some noticeable features like: Hayate in normal form, Hayate in unison form, Reinforce with her own base, and Reinforce sitting on her wing. I'm sorry to tell you that in this photo session, you'll only see Hayate in normal form. Well.. it's just i was too carried away taking pictures of her, and i forgot to change her form, and also forgot to take a picture of Reinforce.

Her face skin is just too pale, but you won't see it here.

I like her face and those blue eyes. Her face is just so pretty, yet so cool. Notice that these photos have gone through 3 steps: camera settings, DPP editing, and Photoshop editing. As i said before, Alter's figures skin tones are pale, while in this photos, her skin looks livelier than the real one. That's because I've done color manipulation using RAW, picture style setting, and white balance. I don't know why Alter keeps doing that pale skin tone on their figures.

Very cool indeed...

Talk about her eyes, well... yes... her eyes need a highlight, so i did this on her eyes. Wow.. her eyes just look soooo cool in this photo. I wonder how a figure sculptor and painter, make her eyes look so beautiful like this. Eyes are very small parts and need high patience and skills to make parts like that.

Her favorite hairpin.

Hayate's signature hairpin. I wouldn't want to miss this in the photo session. Even in her office getup, she still wears that hairpin. I don't know if it has a special meaning on it, but i guess it's just an official standard accessories like Haruhi's hairband.

Hayate's battle jacket's hat.

Hayate's hat, one of her battle jacket equipment. I've tried taking of her hat after she was arrived, but i notice something was lacking, so yes... she's better with her hat on. Anyway, I've already watched StrikerS, but i never notice those ribbons behind her hat, and now i know Hayate's hat has those ribbons.

Hayate's battle jacket.

Can you count, how many episodes Hayate wore this battle jacket? Or just count how many minutes she wore that? If you really count it, i think you'll end up with small number. So yeah, Hayate in her battle jacket need more highlight. Her inner jacket has the similar design as Rein's, except they have different colors. And She has a outer vest similar to Nanoha's, complete with long sleeve, white color, and blue edges.

Great quality, great sculpt, great paintjob.

I never knew Hayate's battle jacket has so much details, and many thanks goes to Alter for bringing that details alive in this figure. Her paintjob is also awesome, with that folds and shading around the jackets. I found a very small and unnoticed flaw in this figure, other than that, everything looks so perfect!

Nice chest... but well... just to let you know.

Hmm... nice chest, but not too big to brag about. Well... her chest (here) has a so-so size. Well... the main reason you bought this figure isn't to find sexiness, but coolness. That's why i never bought a flat chested bikini character figure, because you're buying bikini figure because you need sexiness, and you buy an action themed figure because you need coolness.

Hey... it's painted fingernail! Kinda invincible because it's pale pink colored.

After Reinforce's floating book, and now Hayate's floating book. Looks like it was floating in the promotional photos, but yeah... the secret lies on her wrist, left wrist to be exact. The photo above explains it all. And also, notice that her nails are painted. Yes... painted fingernails! I'm pretty sure that some of you Hayate owner haven't notice this until you saw this photo. That's because some figure collectors often skip on examining the whole figure from different angles and just put it on their rack or desk or whatever place. Please... don't let that habit prevents you from discovering how great a figure is.

Writings inside Buch Der Nachthimmel.

Buch Der Nachthimmel, her book device. Once again, you'll miss this writing if you just put your figure and just keep watching her from the front. It's a small book, so the writings are also small, it's unreadable, but at least you can see the drawing there.

Magic book.

The sculpt on her book cover is just too amazing! The details are just to amazing, especially on the front cover. Moreover, the shading on the book is also awesome! This book has so many magic in the anime, and Alter make this book in this figure also like magic!

Her right hand with Schwert-Kreuz.

With book on her left hand, she has her wand, Schwert-Kreuz, on her right hand. Although her hand looks pretty firm on grabbing the wand, it's also easy to take her wand off. So watch out when you grab her around the wand.

Violet pearl, anyone ever notice this in the anime?

I never knew that there's a beautiful violet pearl on her back edge of her wand in the anime. So yeah... i just knew after I've done this photo session. Anyway, you can take off this blue part to insert the wand on Hayate's hand.

Schwert-Kreuz, as cool as it sounds.

I like this wand, it's cool and i think has a cooler shape than Bardiche and Raging Heart IMO. This wand also has a part where it was wrapped with bandage. Usually that's where i put Hayate's hand.

Parts around her hip.

Around her hip, there's these armor parts. I'm not really interested with these parts. But one thing you should know that, in the anime, these parts are made of metal, and Alter didn't forget to put glossy paint on it to make a metal feeling on it.

Why Alter keep making figure with pale skin tone?

Usually, legs are parts where i bragged about the skin. Well... yes... Alter's skin tone is just too pale as always. I don't know if this has already become Alter's characteristic on making figure or they already tried to fix it. But yeah... the only thing i don't like in Alter's figure is just this pale skin, that's all.

Her big cape which made the box also big.

This is the part which made the box big, just like Fate Burst version's cape. If i can remove it, i think I'll remove it. Yeah... because i don't really like this big cape. But oh well, what can we do? It's her equipment anyway.

Mandatory pantie shot.

Oopss... i wouldn't forget to do this pantie shot. It's black, so it blends perfectly with the shadow, makes it kinda unseen. But yeah... it's just a service from me. XD

The 6 black wings, i've said 1.5 year ago.

My otaku friend asked me 1.5 year ago, "Dude, is there any Hayate figure exist?", and i answered "No... Fate and Nanoha are more popular and no love for Hayate, so there's no Hayate figure around.", and i continued "But that would be cool if Hayate figure was exist, with the battle jacket and those 6 black wings, it must be COOL!!". I never expected that there will be Hayate figure like this at that time, and now i've seen it and have it on my collection.

Cool... really cool!

Those 6 black wings are the coolest parts in this figure. One and a half year ago i imagined Hayate figure with her 6 black wings, and now my imagination became reality. Her 6 black wings look really cool, especially with that transparent effect on it.

Watch out of breaking the wings.

Alter's really did a very good job on this figure. The wings are attached on certain places and make them look really floating. Just like what they did on Rein's book and Hayate's book. The sculpt on her wings are also great. The only thing i'm afraid is, breaking her wings, because the wings is somewhat thin, and it could break easily.

POI: Hayate herself!

POI? well... Hayate (character) herself is the POI! Hayate never got enough love, and she doesn't get much screen time, especially her action. This figure gives Hayate the chance to show the world how great she is (i think i've said that before XD). Eventhough you're not Hayate's fans, i think most of you would want to get this figure.

That's pretty long! Well... that's it for now. Expect more anime review and Nyx's photo session in the coming posts. So.... see you at the next post!