Even though I’ve just started my .hack-athon, I’ve still got a bit of time to let my focus wander. It’s good for me because it lets me take a break, keep myself from getting overwhelmed. It’s good for you, because you get another article from me to read. Aren’t you excited? These aren’t official reviews this week, but just a glance into what I’ve been enjoying and what my thoughts about them are. I hope you enjoy them.
1. Y: The Last Man (Book 1)
Imagine you’re the last man on Earth. Every woman wants to get with you, because it’s up to you to repopulate. Except it’s not as pleasant as it sounds. Some women blame you for the death of the rest of the men. Some just want to kill you and rid the world of men entirely. Society itself is in pretty rough shape, with no electricity and a scarcity of food. And your pet monkey isn’t very well-behaved, and tends to get you in all kinds of trouble. Welcome to the world of Y: The Last Man.
An American comic written by Brian K. Vaughan, Y tells the story of Yorrick and his monkey Ampersand after every other male mammal on the planet dies. I’ve only read the first volume, but I’m already hooked. It’s a pretty dark story, but it’s filled with plenty of humorous moments. The plot grabs you from the very first issue, and Yorrick is instantly likeable. The art is solid throughout, and the scenes showing the aftermath of the disaster are pretty chilling. Part survival tale, part mystery, Y: The Last Man has a lot to offer longtime comic readers as well as newcomers./p>
2. Lord of the Rings Online free version (PC)
A few years ago I started playing Lord of the Rings Online. Why? Well, it’s Lord of the Rings and I’m a big dork. I enjoyed it a good bit for the most part. They did many things as well as or better than other MMOs I had played, and only a few things really stood out as a pain. I’ve got a short attention span with MMOs, though, especially when I have no friends playing with me, so I only played for a couple of months. About once a year since then I’ve gone back and tried it out, had my fun, then moved on. Recently, LOTRO made a massive change, allowing the core of the game to be played for free. No cost to download, no monthly subscription. Once I realized my laptop could handle it, I knew I had to check it out.
It’s largely the game I remember it to be, but there are a few noticeable differences. The first is the addition of the LOTRO store, a menu brought up in-game that allows you to purchase things like experience boosts, extra storage space, or extra questing areas. You pay for these using points mainly obtained by purchasing them with real money. However, you also earn small amounts of points just by playing the game for free. It’s a great variation to the standard formula, and it really encourages you to fully explore all of Middle-Earth.
There are 3 tiers of play available to you, with extra perks at each new level. Everyone can be a Free Player, just create a free account, download, and have fun. Becoming a Premium Player happens one of two ways. You can either be a free player who purchases points from the LOTRO store. At that point, you’re automatically upgraded. If you used to subscribe to LOTRO, though, then you’re a Premium Player from day one. Of course, there’s also the chance to be a VIP, an option for those who sign up to pay a monthly subscription fee. In addition to the in-game perks you receive, you also receive 500 free points for the store each month.
This is definitely the best free MMO I’ve ever played. If you’re in to fantasy MMOs, don’t be afraid to give it a try for a few days. Your other games will still be there. If you’ve never played an MMO before, this is a good place to start. It’s free, fun, and easy for beginners. What more can you ask for? Either way, if you start playing, you should create a character on the Imladris server. Leave your character name in the comments below, and I’ll come say hi.
3. Ghostbusters: The Animated Series
These probably aren’t the Ghostbusters you’re thinking of. Instead of spinning off from the two movies, this animated series is based of a live-action show from the 1970s. The Ghostbusters here are Jake and Eddie, who take over the family business after their fathers are kidnapped to the future by a crazy robotic ghost who likes to play the organ. Our heroes are aided in their adventures by a talking ape who invents all their gear. Their mode of transportation: a talking, time-traveling, transforming, flying car. Yes, the show is that weird, and that’s why I loved it as a kid.
I rediscovered it recently while browsing through Netflix, and I was flooded with childhood memories as soon as the opening credits kicked in. Characters and catchphrases I had no idea I knew were instantly familiar. Yes, it’s cheesy, but for someone like me who loves 80s cartoons, it’s perfect. It was made by Filmation, so if you’re familiar with shows like He-Man and She-Ra, you’ll recognize many of the voices. If you’ve got the chance, check it out, either for a burst of nostalgia or just a good laugh.