Macross Δ: The new Macross

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Ah, one of the most famous sci-fi mecha franchises ever known to the world from Japan besides Gundam is Macross. The series where a plethora of elements come together – transforming mecha jet fighter, idol singer, J-Pop, dramatic love triangle, big space battles and even a crazy missile attack aka Itano Missile Massacre or Circus. Well, guess what, it’s come back for more.

Slam Dunk X Nike Air Jordans released

The Slam Dunk X Nike collection
The Slam Dunk X Nike collection
The Slam Dunk X Nike collection

Pinch us please. We never thought this day would come. An official collaboration between THE basketball shoe brand from Nike and one of the most popular basketball manga ever made.

No we’re not talking about Kuroko no Basket. Think something older and even more iconic, especially to Malaysians. Yes, it’s Takehiko Inoue’s Slam Dunk. The collaboration between Nike and Takehiko Inoue doesn’t just cover the Air Jordans only as a full range of products will be available. This (as can be seen in the image above) includes two Air Jordans, two t-shirts and a cap, all with Slam Dunk inspired designs.

The collaboration shows that Nike does seem to understand its Asian audiences and this is also part of Nike’s effort to push the brand even further into the Asian market. Picking Slam Dunk  as the manga to collaborate with is pretty smart as it is known as THE basketball manga throughout Asia, inspiring many a young boy to pick up the game (including at one point, this now very unfit writer). Of course the apparels are going to get their fair share of popularity but what’s really going to really popular will be the Air Jordans themselves.

Slam Dunk X Nike Air Jordan VI
Slam Dunk X Nike Air Jordan VI

The two kicks getting the Slam Dunk inspired treatment are the Air Jordan VI and Jordan Super.Fly 3. The Air Jordan VI has a red upper with manga inspired imagery as well as Slam Dunk main protagonist, Hanamichi Sakuragi’s jersey number 10 on the side while the Jordan Super.Fly 3 has a black upper with new Slam Dunk imagery especially made for the sneakers. They’re not just stopping with the kicks either as the imagery is also extended to the shoe boxes, so don’t be throwing them boxes away.

The Slam Dunk X Nike Jordan Super.Fly 3
The Slam Dunk X Nike Jordan Super.Fly 3

So how much can we expect to fork out for this highly anticipated kicks? You can expect to pay around US$185 to US$250 for them according to Nike. How about when? The collection should be out in selected Asian markets since 18 October while the rest of the world can expect a November 1 release.

In case you’re too young to know Slam Dunk  or you just need a refresher, the manga by Takehiko Inoue focuses on Hanamichi Sakuragi, an outcast delinquent who joins his high school basketball team to prove himself, after being rejected by a girl. His addition and misadventures in the world of basketball eventually bring his high school team to be one of the top basketball contenders in Japan. The manga which ran from 1990 to 1996, is one of the most best selling mangas in the world, with 120 million copies sold in Japan alone, and has enjoyed massive popularity in Asia.

Source: Nike

Gargantia’s Chamber figurine unveiled by Good Smile

Chamber in flight
Chamber in flight
Chamber in flight

Holy smokes, check out the build quality of the Chamber mecha figurine from Gargantia of the Verdurous Planet. Fans of the anime will be able to get their grubby mitts on this 1:50th figure next year as it’ll be released come May 2015. The Chamber figurine comes with fully articulated joints and full weapon accessories as per anime including the Pinion Halberd, Beam Rifle, Gatling Gun and two missile pods. There are also six alternate hands and special effects pieces should you want to vary the figurines display style. Good Smile even added a detachable head cockpit as well to give the figurine an additional nice touch.

So how much can you expect to fork out for this? At 18,333 yen (around RM567) it’s going to cost a pretty penny. And that’s before shipping and handling. Of course you could always wait for the local hobby shops to bring it in but it’ll definitely cost more by then.

Gargantia of the Verdurous Planet is a mecha sci-fi anime released back in 2013 and it revolves around  the adventures of Lieutenant Reddo, a soldier in the militarized Galactic Mankind. It starts when Reddo fighting in an interplanetary with the mysterious but dangerous Hideauze aliens, gets sucked into wormhole that sends him and his mecha, Chamber, to a flooded Earth. Earth as it happens, is supposed to be a legendary planet of fables. Cut off from his allies, Reddo must cooperate with Earth’s surviving humans to and learn what happened before the Galactic Mankind took off from Earth as well as discover the mysteries of the alien Hideauze.

For more information & details, you can visit the Good Smile here, or if you can’t wait, pre-order Chamber over here.

Source: Good Smile

 

New PS Vita Trailer for Fate/Hollow Ataraxia

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Caren Ortensia, one of the main female lead in the game

Kadokawa Games has revealed a 3rd trailer Fate/Hollow Ataraxia video for the PS Vita platform. Fans can see new animated scenes in the trailer and will soon be able to get the grubby mitts on the game soon as it’ll be released in Japan on 27 November. The game, first released as PC visual novel in 2005 will finally be ported to the PS Vita with some extras. This comes in the form of a mini game called Capsule Servant which is basically a tower defense game. For fans of the original PC release, you’ll also be seeing the return of the Illya’s Castle mini game as well. Aside from the mini-games, Fate/Hollow Ataraxia for the PS Vita will also features touch screen support, full voice acting and new opening sequence animated by studio Ufotable. There’s also the opening song “holLow wORlD” which will be sung by Aimer.

Ufotable, the studio that is responsible for the animated scenes for the game is famous producing anime based on various TYPEMOON franchises like Kara no Kyokai, or Garden of Sinners and is currently airing the rebooted series of Fate/Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works.

Fate/Hollow Ataraxia’s plot is set few months after the end of Fate/Stay Night.

Source: Official Site

My Teen Comedy SNAFU Season 2 Announced

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Remember the really long, long titled anime called Yahari Ore na Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru or, for simplicity sake My Teen Comedy SNAFU, that was aired last year?

Looks like we’ll be getting a second season in a recent announcement by Shogakugan. A staff list has already been announced and the most notable change is that Kie Oikawa, who did Outbreak Company, will be taking over directorial duties form season one’s, Ai Yoshimura. That’s not the only change though as we’re also looking a change in the lead character design, with A Certain Magical Index artist Yuichi Tanaka is taking over from Yuu Shindou.

My Teen Comedy SNAFU follows the life of Hachiman Hikigaya, a cynical and hardbitten student who is disillusioned with love life since a bad rejection in middle school. All this changes though when he meets another, Yukino Yukinoshita who is blunt and practical to a fault and is forced to join a certain club by his classroom teacher. The anime originally started of as a light novel by Wataru Watari and is still ongoing with 9 volumes already published so far. It was adapted as an anime series in 2013 has received a moderately good reception despite its unlikable main male lead.

Season two will be aired in 2015 but the specific date has yet to be announced.

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Get more anime related news here.

Scarlett Johansson as Major Motoko Kusanagi?

You know what? She might actually fit the bill
The original Major Kusanagi
The original Major Kusanagi

Holy moley, this is surprising news indeed. Dreamworks is offering US$ 10 million to Scarlett Johansson to play the role of Major Kusanagi Ghost in the Shell, one of the most iconic Japanese cyberpunk science fiction franchises that is slated for a live action, English language adaptation in Hollywood. She wasn’t the only one that was tagged for the role as earlier rumours had Margot Robbie in talks for the role.

If this is true and Scarlett Johansson does accept the role, it’ll further entrench her geek creds, which are already being bolstered by her Black Widow role in the various Marvel Movies as well as her recent sci-fi venture, Lucy.

The rights to Ghost in the Shell were first picked up by Steven Spielberg, who so happens to be the co-owner of Dreamworks, back in 2009. There were rumours of a Hollywood adaption of the anime/manga, but until recently, were just rumours.

You know what? She might actually fit the bill
You know what? She might actually fit the bill

However it has now taken a closer step to reality as Rupert Sanders, the director behind Snow White and the Huntsman, was reportedly roped in for the project by Dreamworks. It has also been reported that an existing screenplay by The Reluctant Fundamentalist’s William Wheeler, will be the basis of the live action adaptation. That’s not all heavy hitters like Avi Arad (Spider-Man), Steven Paul (Ghost Rider), and Mark Sourian (Need for Speed) will producing.

Ghost in the Shell is the creation of Masamune Shirow, which was originally a seinen manga published in 1991. However, it wasn’t until 1995 with Mamoru Oshii’s (who has been constantly mistaken as the original creator) seminal anime movie adaptation of the Manga that it obtained iconic status. To date, aside from the original manga, there have been two animated movies, two animated TV series and an OVA series.

Hopefully Dreamworks doesn’t screw this one up as it is one of THE anime that really needs a good live action treatment. So what do you guys think of Scarlett Johansson as Major Kusanagi? Do let us know and maybe even gives us some ideas on who else should be casted as other characters in the Ghost in the Shell universe.

Source: IGN

Launch trailer of Evil Within is simply haunting

Poster for The Evil Within
In your face, buddy!
In your face, buddy!

Shinji Mikami, who is famous for the Resident Evil series, is the leading designer for the new survival horror game, Evil Within. It’s a collaborative effort between Bethesda Studio & Tango Gameworks. Available for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox One & Xbox 360.

The third person perspective-style has you playing as Sebastian Castellanos, and you must focus on scavenging supplies, fight or run in order to survive the ordeal. What’s unique about this game is the world can modify itself during scripted events and depending on what you do, including altering places or creating new paths.

When Sebastian uses medical items, some of them can cause hallucinations. In order to upgrade his abilities, you must seek out green fluid vials in the game. Various weapons are available — from a revolver to a special crossbow but players must be mindful about ammunition as it is scarce in the game. Melee combat is to push the enemy away and do beware — some of them can revive.

The plot has policeman Sebastian investigating a scene of a gruesome murder when suddenly he and his partner is ambushed. Knocked out during the ambush, he awakens only to find himself staring at horror when the undead are walking amongst the living.

Sounds pretty chilling and a perfect game to play during Halloween.

Turn off the lights, put on your Razer headsets and enjoy (a pillow might be needed for comfort).

Street Fighter Puzzle Spirits is coming in Winter 2014

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The title name of the game

Capcom is releasing another title in its very iconic Street Fighter franchise Street Fighter Puzzle Spirits — for iOS and Android. Many gamers will remember the Street Fighter puzzle games from a few years ago so gamers will somewhat know what to expect from this new title. No specific release date yet but it’s expected to be in “Winter 2014”.

So far no news if the game will be available outside Japan, either.

Street Fighter fans can look forward to more action-packed puzzles featuring few familiar characters spotted so far – Ryu, Ken, Chun Li, Sakura and Guile. Players can use other special moves after gaining sufficient power ups in the game, just like Puzzles & Dragons. You only need to tap on the move icon on screen to activate. Apparently, Capcom plans to include some RPG elements in this game. How this will work or how it will be incorporated will be interesting to see.

Only Street Fighter characters will appear in this game, complete with their background themes e.g. Ryu’s rooftop stage seen in the teaser below.

FIGHT!

Source: Main site

Apple takes charge with new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3

Dearest Apple fans, this is the latest game-changer in Apple‘s already formidable tablet line, the iPad Air 2. Claimed to be world’s thinnest tablet, it measures at 6.1mm thick, powered by a second generation 64-bit A8X processor. The Cupertino folks made a point that two iPad Air 2 units stacked on top of each other are still thinner than one original iPad.

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The new iPad with numerous apps

With a 10-hour battery life, the device boasts a 9.7 inch display with zero air gaps between the LCD, touch sensor and glass. It supports up to 2048 X 1536 resolution translating into 264PPI.

Anti-reflective coating reduces glare by 56% and this is also the first appearance of Touch ID on an Apple tablet. With standard security options via the fingerprint sensor,  Touch ID also supports Apple Pay which allows in-app purchases and payment in stores. The new iPad also adds support for 802.11ac, a relatively new format that is much faster than its predecessors. iOS 8.1 powers the ultra slim tablet with a few additional minor details. Surprisingly, this model omits the mute button which has been standard on past iPad models.

For optics, the Apple iPad Air 2 has a new 8MP f/2.4 iSight camera that supports 1080p and slow motion video recording, panoramas, burst mode and time lapse mode. The front FacewTime camera has been updated with a f/2.2 sensor.

Apple offers three colours – Silver, Gray and Gold and available for pre-order starting on 17 October 2014. Two models are available for now – the Wi-Fi only and Wi-Fi + Cellular. Pricing is USD499 for 16GB Wi-Fi, USD599 for 64GB Wi-Fi and USD699 for 128GB Wi-Fi model variants. Whereas for WI-Fi + Cellular models, the pricing listed is at USD629, USD729 and USD829 respectively.

Besides this, Apple announced the iPad mini 3, a smaller sibling of the iPad Air 2. Specs and size wise, it’s not much different from the older iPad mini 2 with the exception of Touch ID and the gold colour option. Surprisingly, Apple didn’t even bother to upgrade its underpinnings like the  iPhone 6, disappointingly, still running a A7 chipset with M7 co-processor. It comes with a 5MP iSight camera only, a huge difference compared to iPad Air 2.  Like its bigger brother, there are two variants – Wi-Fi only and Wi-Fi + Cellular.

 

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iPad Mini 3 on the row

Pricing is set at USD399 for 16GB, USD499 for 64GB and USD599 for 128 GB for Wi-Fi only, whereas Wi-Fi + Cellular commands at USD529, USD629 and USD729 respectively.

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Touch ID feature on iPad Mini 3

Apple has not announced any plans for the international market but it is expected to come soon.

Source: Apple and The Verge

Behold the Google Nexus 6 and 9

Check out Google's new additions to the Nexus family
Check out Google’s new additions to the Nexus family

Some of you might have been waiting for this and it’s finally here! Google has recently announced two new mobile device for Android lovers out there. Their new Nexus 6 phablet and the Nexus 9 tablet.

Google enters the phablet game

Google's new phablet, the Nexus 6
Google’s new phablet, the Nexus 6

While many other Android based smartphones brands have long been in the tablet game, this is the first time Google has personally made their own Nexus version of a phablet. Of course the bump in screen size isn’t the only thing that the Nexus 6 is offering. It’ll be the first smartphone or any device to run on Google’s Android 5 Lollipop also known as Android L.

So what else do are we getting from the Nexus 6. Specification wise it’s pretty impressive. We mentioned the bump up in screen size, which is 5.96 inch screen with a 1440 x 2560 AMOLED Quad HD display. Then there is  engine  that powers this phablet which is the Quad Core Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 running at 2.7GHz with the Adreno 420 GPU.  There’s also 3 GB RAM and users can opt for either the 32GB or 64GB versions.

It has a pretty impressive shooter on it as well in the form of the 13-megapixel Sony IMX 214 image sensor camera with a F2.0 lens, Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS) and a ring flash with dual LEDs. And you won’t have to worry about the this phablet dying on you too soon with its whopping 3220 mAh battery that has a Turbo Charger feature for … what else, fast charging of the phone. As for connectivity option, you can expect LTE compatibility as well.

 

A lookit here, a new Google tablet

Nexus 9 with 3 choices of colours on display here
Nexus 9 with 3 choices of colours on display here

Google also announced the Nexus 9, their new 9-inch tablet running on Android Lolipop. For power, it runs on a 64-bit Nvidia Tegra K1 processor with the Kepler GPU and has a 8-megapixel camera with auto-focus, a f/2.4 lens and LED flash mounted on the rear. The 8.9-inchscreen comes with a resolution of 2,048 x 1536 and touts the scratch resistant Gorilla Glass 3. It’ll come standard NFC, Bluetooth 4.1, WiFi as well as LTE if you’re wondering about connectivity options. There’s a pretty decent battery in it as well, coming in at 6700 mAh which Google claims will give about 9 hours of operating life.

The Nexus 9 with its optional magnetic keyboard
The Nexus 9 with its optional magnetic keyboard

 

At 425g and measuring about 153.68 x 228.25 x 7.95mm, the Nexus 9 is not going to weigh you down either. As for accessories, if you can’t live without a keyboard, don’t fret. The Nexus 9 can be turned into a laptop hybrid its magnetic keyboard. That is sold separately of course.

So when can we expect these brand new goodies from Google?

The Nexus 6 is expected to be out sometime in November though pre-orders for it will start on October 29. How much you wonder? It’ll be going for US$649 (around RM2011), sans contract. As for the The Nexus 9, it is slated for a November 3 availability with pre-orders already availabale. Price? At US$399 ( around RM1310). Mind you these are US availability dates and Google have yet to announce availability for other regions, so just stay tuned for more info on that once they come out.

Source: International Business Times