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Christ Centered Gamer Blog

This blog contains non-gaming related reviews and random ramblings

Transformers Rescue Bots: Mystery Rescue

Thank you Shout Factory for sending us this DVD to review!

The Transformer Rescue Bots series is a great show targeted for school age boys.  The characters carry over from the previous shows, but watching them is not required to appreciate these episodes.  This Mystery Rescue has five suspenseful episodes lasting 110 minutes.

  • Countdown - Some weird bugs are teleporting people all over town into an abandoned cavern.  Will the Rescue Bots find everyone in time before they run out of air?
  • The Haunting of Griffin Rock - There are reports of ghost sightings all over Griffin Rock.  Do ghosts exist or is there some other explanation?  Perhaps Doc Greene's Spectral Vapor Filter will help solve this mystery.  
  • Spellbound - The rescue team is vacationing in Blossom Vale when people start acting unusually.  Cell phones are to blame as they are somehow hypnotizing people.  Cody must get to the source and save everyone before it's too late.  
  • Blame the Gremlins - Many people blame technical problems on gremlins.  What if they're real and are attacking the electronic devices in Griffin Rock?
  • Feed The Beast - Cody has an encounter with a bigfoot like creature called the Maine Ridge Monster.  Despite photographic evidence, nobody believes him.  Where does this monster stay and how did it come to be?  The town will soon find out!  

My son enjoyed this DVD and is a fan of the show.  There are some supernatural and mysterious themes in these episodes, but most of the phenomenon  get explained through science.  The humor, animation, and voice acting is well done.  All in all this is a pretty good DVD for $13.


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The Perfect Summer

Thank you Pure Publicity for sending us this DVD to review!

After the death of his father and losing everything, Jake and his mom move in with her estranged father.  Neither of them realize that Jake's grandfather is a legendary surfer and known by all of the locals.  Instead of surfing the internet, Jake is encouraged by his grandfather and love interest to surf the ocean instead.    

Learning to surf isn't easy and to make matters worse, Jake isn't the only guy attracted to Kayla.  He is both physically and verbally attacked by the town bully whom she isn't even remotely interested in.  The town's surf shop owner Cody (American Idol's Jason Castro) is one of the only friends Jake has.  

The only other actor I recognized in The Perfect Summer was the mother's boss played by Louis Mandlylor from My Big Fat Greek Wedding.   The acting was decent but the sound quality was really poor.  Even with the 5.1 sound selected, we only had stereo sound and the voices were noticeably switching channels often.     The story was decent and had some Christian themes woven throughout.  The take away message is to try your best and not give up.


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Brainzy

Thank you Education.com for sending us a one-month trial code!

Kids are getting tech savvy younger and younger these days.  Why not use their computer skills to help them increase their math and reading proficiency?  Brainzy offers over three-hundred games and activities to keep them entertained and sitting still. Their format, which uses catchy music and colorful animations, is similar to Sesame Street.

Brainzy follows the Common Core guidelines and offers both family and classroom versions of their programs.  Families can pay as little as $3.99 a month if billed annually, or in monthly installments of $6.99.  There’s a seven-day trial available to see if your children are compatible with the browser-based program.  ;)  Each family account can support up to three players.

At this time Brainzy has curriculums for Pre-K through First Grade.  My son, who is in first grade, enjoyed using Brainzy while my older daughters watched and chimed in as well.  They wished there were higher level courses available.

Here’s a breakdown of the skills your kids can learn using Brainzy:

Pre-K

  • Math – Numbers 0-20, Addition, Subtraction, Counting, Shapes, Patterns, Sorting, Measurement and Data
  • Reading – There are several animated stories that can be read to or by them including The Lion and the Rat, The Three Little Pigs, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Down by the Bay, How the Camel Got his Hump, The Ugly Duckling, My Shadow, and Anansi and the Turtle 

 

Kindergarten

  • Math – Math – Numbers 0-20, Addition, Subtraction, Counting, Comparing, Shapes, Building Numbers, Sorting & Classifying 
  • Reading – Upper and Lowercase, Short a,e,i,o,u, Blending, Segmenting, Sounds M,S,B,R,P,K,T,G,F, N,D,H,J,C,L,W,V,Y,Z

 

First Grade

  • Math – Number Sense, Place Value, Addition, Subtraction, Comparing Numbers, Geometry, Telling Time, Measurement and Data
  • Reading – Sight Words, Short a,e,i,o,u

As you can tell there is plenty to learn and do here.  Brainzy is reasonably priced and worth looking into for homeschoolers and parents who want to give their kids an academic advantage.

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Pee-wee's Playhouse Seasons 1 & 2

Thank you Shout Factory for sending us these DVD's to review!

I used to love watching Pee-wee's Playhouse as a kid.  Now that most people have forgotten about Mr. Reubens' indiscretions, what better time to introduce him to the next generation!    Each show begins with Pee-wee getting a secret word from Conky, his robot friend.  Every time somebody says that word in the show, everyone is encouraged to scream.  (AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!)   So from here on out, the secret word will be DVD.  Everybody knows what to do right? 

There are many regulars on the show including Cowboy Curtis played by Morpheus.. I mean Laurence Fishburne, and the late Phil Hartman who played as Captain Carl.    This DVD (AHHHHHHHHHHHH!) set contains twenty-three episodes, divided into four discs.  In addition to the shows, there are brand-new interviews from the cast and crew.  There's over nine hours of silliness to be had in this collection.

This show is pretty clean and often teaches good morals and manners.  There are lots of cartoons and clay animated shorts that are fun to watch.   The visuals are pretty good, with exception to the old school cartoons that showed their age twenty-five years ago.  (Yes it's been that long and I feel old now.)  Everything else is bright and colorful.     

Kids of all ages are bound to enjoy this show.  I must admit that it brings back great memories.  My kids are now fans of Pee-wee Herman and we'll have to show them his movies next.  

If you're looking for a silly and clean show for your kids, check this DVD (AHHHHHHHHHH!)  collection out.  Amazon sells this special edition for less than $30. Older collections without the interviews can be had for less than $15 on DVD (AHHHHHHHHHH!).  


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Adventure Time Season 4

Thank you Cartoon Network for sending us this Blu-ray to review!

Like many shows, Adventure Time season 4 resumes from a cliff hanger and ends with a new one.  Season 4 starts with Finn trying to make a relationship work with the Flame Princess after giving up on Princess Bubblegum.   There are a couple of problems with their relationship though.  For starters, she burns Finn when coming in contact with him and the other problem is that she’s emotionally unstable.  If she gets upset, she can get out of control and destroy towns in the Candy kingdom.  Princess Bubblegum wants Finn to be aware of the dangers and to break off the relationship, but he brushes her off thinking she’s just jealous.  

Love is in the air for another episode titled Dream of Love.  In this episode Tree Trunks falls in love with a pig and their open display of affection is upsetting the townsfolk.  They are told to keep their love private, but everywhere they go to make out, they get discovered.   There is one scene where you can see them kissing in the shadows and you see some tongue action going on.  When told to move in together, Tree Trunks declines saying that it would not be proper since they are not married.  Unfortunately, Jake doesn’t follow the same guidelines as Rainicorn announces at the end of one of the episodes that she is pregnant.   

The Ice King is desperate for a wife and makes himself one from body parts he steals from princesses across the kingdom in the episode Princess Monster Wife.  Needless to say, she’s not much of a looker, but her heart is in the right place.  

There are plenty of silly and non-love related episodes.  I like the Card Wars episode where Finn plays against the over-competitive Jake in a Dungeons and Dragons style card game.  The animated effects in that game look awesome and I wish it existed in real life!  

The humor is great as always and the voice talent includes some stars like George Takei and Bobcat Golthwait.  The Blu-ray collection features bonus commentaries from the makers of Adventure Time.  It was neat to see the inspiration and development of many of the catchy tunes used throughout the series.  

For the reasonable asking price of $25 you’ll get your monies worth.  There are twenty-six episodes that will keep you entertained for 286 minutes.

Here’s the episode list:

  • Hot to the Touch (Part 2)
  • Five Short Graybles
  • Web Weirdos
  • Dream of Love
  • Return to the Nightosphere (Part 1)
  • Daddy's Little Monster (Part 2)
  • In Your Footsteps
  • Hug Wolf
  • Princess Monster Wife
  • Goliad
  • Beyond This Earthly Realm
  • Gotcha!
  • Princess Cookie
  • Card Wars
  • Sons of Mars
  • Burning Low
  • BMO Noire
  • King Worm
  • Lady & Peebles
  • You Made Me
  • Who Would Win
  • Ignition Point
  • The Hard Easy
  • Reign of Gunters
  • I Remember You
  • The Lich (Part 1)


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Persecuted

Thank You Millenium Entertainment for sending us this Blu-Ray to review.  

John Luther (James Remar) is a prominent evangelist who has friends in high places.  One of his friends, Senator Donald Harrison (Bruce Davison), turns against John when he refuses to back a bill for religious equality.  This bill promotes equal time to be allotted to all beliefs on religious networks, even primarily Christian ones.  After John Luther puts his foot down and stands firmly in his faith that Jesus is the ONLY way to heaven (John 14:6), he finds himself framed for the murder of an underage girl he had contact with.  

John is now a wanted criminal and must find out who his true friends are and prove his innocence.  Not only is John’s life in danger (Why didn't they just kill him instead of frame him?), his Catholic friends are targeted too.   

To make matters worse, John’s 20+ years younger wife is being hit on by the acting president of his religious organization.   Not only is this new president (Brad Stine) a scumbag, he’s greedy too and willing to compromise his morals for a bigger paycheck.  While Christians are shown in a mixed light, the government is portrayed as corrupt and incompetent in this movie.  
Even with the star studded cast, I recommend watching The Fugitive with Harrison Ford instead of Persecuted.  As a Christian I just couldn't connect with this film.  Yes, John Luther was being framed and that's not cool; however, I don't see this scenario happening any time soon.  When I think of persecution, I think of the Christians in the Middle East who are being killed or evicted from their homes for simply being Christian and not denouncing their faith.  Those are the truly persecuted people and their story needs to be told instead of rehashing another movie to put a Christian spin on it.


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The Sonic Sitcom Episode 3

Here's the next episode of our internet cartoon series!

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Disneynature Bears

Thank you Disney for sending us this Blu-Ray to review!

When I think of Disney, their animated movies come to mind.  Disneynature was founded in 2008, and focuses on independent nature documentary films.    They have produced many successful films including Earth narrated by James Earl Jones and Chimpanzee which was narrated by Tim Allen.  Bears is skillfully narrated by John C. Reilly and tells the tale of a first time mother bear, Sky, raising her two cubs, Scout and Amber.  

Given the personality differences between the two cubs (Scout is a handful!) and the dangerous Alaskan wildlife, motherhood is no easy task. Sky has several close calls to losing her cubs to wolves and hungry bears.  She must keep them safe and teach them how to defend and feed themselves.  Her goal is to help them eat enough salmon to survive the upcoming winter hibernation.

Unfortunately, the rivers loaded with fish have non-friendly bears there and Sky and her family must find a more peaceful area to gorge themselves on 90+ pounds of fish a day.  There are many neat facts taught in this movie and it’s both entertaining and educational to watch.  I highly recommend Bears to any animal lover out there.  My kids were skeptical at first but enjoyed the movie, especially my daughter, Amber.  We look forward to watching more Disneynature films!


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Thunder and the House of Magic

Thank you Shout Factory for sending us this DVD to review!

Thunder and the House of Magic starts off with a family moving away and deliberately leaving a kitten behind to fend for itself.  Confused and unsure of where to go, the kitten makes his way to an unusual mansion.  The owner is a magician and takes him in and bestows the name Thunder to him because of the rain storm that brought them together.  The magician's rabbit and mouse pets are not as welcoming and plot to evict Thunder from his new home.  Tragedy befalls the magician and it's up to Thunder and the magician's helpers to team up to save the magicians house from being sold or destroyed by his greedy nephew.

While the story is decent, I was appalled at the language used within this movie.  Thunder and the House of Magic is not rated and does cite cartoon violence.  I was surprised to hear the word d*mn used multiple times (by the nephew) in this movie geared for families.  It's a shame since everything else about the movie is great.  

The computer animated visuals are astounding and lend themselves to 3D very well.  I wish I had a 3D  Blu-Ray setup to see what it looks like!  The characters are very expressive and the cat animations/behaviors are spot on.  However, I have yet to see a cat not want to eat or kill a mouse.   I found it amusing that the cover of the DVD boasts about having music from Selena Gomez in it.  While this statement is true, her song is not until the end credits. 

Don't get this movie if you are looking for a lot of Selena Gomez music or a true family friendly experience.

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Season of a Lifetime

Thank you Pure publicity for sending us this DVD to review!

Just as my Facebook stream has settled down from people dumping ice water on their head for ALS, I watched a movie that impacted me more than any celebrity getting soaked.  After seeing Season of a Lifetime I hope more than ever that a cure is found for this terrible disease.  I pray that the $113 Million raised from the ice bucket challenges is put to good use.

The tagline for Season of a Lifetime summarizes it quite well: “Faith, Family, Football”.  Since I am not into football, I had my doubts about this film, but rest assured, it’s more of a documentary than a sports film.   This movie is about a godly man, devoted husband and father who mentored Georgia's Greenville High School Patriots players and brought them from being laughed at to the state championships.  Many of the players come from rough backgrounds and coach Williams is like a father to them.  That’s doesn't mean he goes easy on them though!

Jeremy Williams is no stranger to football and is the current record holder for the most tackles as a defensive back.  Although he was undersized, he still managed to tackle over fifty players in one season.  After college, he didn't let his football know-how go to waste, and began coaching. Success didn't come right away though; it took a couple of years for the team to work and play well together.  Coach Williams prayed for adversity to bring the team closer together.  It was soon after that he was diagnosed with ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.  

He didn't let this news slow him down.  With his faith, friends, and support he was able to make the Georgia Patriots a force to be reckoned with.  Even with his health declining, he still was able to coach them for a couple more years.  When being blessed with a home remodeling from Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, he didn't retire and coached one more year until his health declined even further. 

Jeremy Williams hasn't lost his fight with ALS, nor has he lost his faith.  He is an inspiration to many and his legacy will continue on.  I strongly recommend watching this movie, even if you’re not a fan of football.  I also recommend checking out the Williams family Extreme Makeover: Home Edition episode.


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My Little Pony: Spooktacular Pony Tales

Thank you Shout Factory for sending us this DVD to review!

Halloween is fast approaching and what better way to celebrate it than with the friendliest ponies around?  There’s over two hours of laughs and valuable lessons to be learned in this cartoon collection.  As an added bonus, there’s a sing-along for the song Bats.  In total there are six episodes including:

  • Boast Busters – Twilight Sparkle is good at magic, but modest about her talent.  That is until a boastful newcomer arrives and challenges her to a magic duel.  Will the arrogant Trixie be humbled in this match?
  • Stare Master – A babysitting job goes wrong when the young ponies venture out into the Everfree forest.  Can Fluttershy’s stare intimidate a cockatrice and save the young fillies from danger?
  • Luna Eclipsed – Princess Luna is in town for Nightmare Night, but is given the cold shoulder no matter how much she tries adjusting her attitude.  Will the ponies accept her present form and forget about her evil past?
  • Sleepless in Ponyville – The ponies are on a camping trip and some of the ghost stories start becoming more and more real.  Scootaloo must learn to face her fears.  
  • Castle Mane-ia – Applejack and Rainbow Dash are competing to see which pony is the bravest.  Their competition takes place is a creepy castle.  Who will be the victor?
  • Bats! – Vampire bats have invaded Sweet Apple Acres on Apple Bucking Day.  Applejack and Fluttershy can’t agree on how to solve this dilemma.  To make matters worse, Fluttershy is accidently turned into a bat-pony from one of Twilight’s spells.  

All of my kids, son included enjoyed this DVD collection.  The girls liked and hung up the bundled poster as well.  My Little Pony: Spooktacular Pony Tales retails for $15 but can be found for closer to ten dollars on Amazon.  This is a great deal and I highly recommend it for fans of the My Little Pony series.


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Slugterra: Return of the Elementals

Thank you Shout Factory for sending us this DVD to review!

Slugterra: Return of the Elementals picks up after the movie Slugterra: Ghoul From Beyond.  If you haven't seen it, there's a quick recap about slugs with the power of mind control and how Eli Shang and his friends defeated them. Those who are not familiar with the series at all should know that Eli and his (mostly human) friends keep their world safe by shooting living slugs as bullets (with elemental capabilities) at those who wish harm upon them.   This animated film begins as Eli awakens from a dream with his father telling him to gather the five elemental slugs together.   This time it's not just the humans being impacted, slugs under the same corrupted element are turning into ghouls.  Eli Shang and his gang must gather the uncorrupted elemental slugs before it's too late and heal the ghoulish ones.   

The adventure won't be easy, but there is just as much hilarity as fighting in Slugterra.  Fans of the show will enjoy the same funny humor and silly personalities of the slugs and crew in Eli Shang's gang.  This movie can be enjoyed by people of all ages.   There's plenty of action to keep a child's attention in the 70 minute DVD and the asking price is a reasonable $15.


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The Remaining

Thank you Affirm Films for sending us this movie to watch!

I have seen many Christian movies ranging from dramas, to documentaries and comedies.  The Remaining is very unique as it's the first Christian themed survival/horror movie I've seen.  It doesn't pull any punches and shows both believers and non-believers getting torn apart by prophesied abominations.  Because of the gore, this movie received a PG-13 rating.  I was surprised it didn't get an R.  The Remaining makes Left Behind look like a Disney film, and is bound to give young kids nightmares.  

The movie begins with a picture perfect wedding and the groom's friend is documenting it with his camcorder.  His footage gets really interesting at the reception when many of the guests suddenly collapse and die.  They are the lucky ones as the people left behind must deal with fire and hail raining from the sky, looting, mayhem, and demonic attacks.  

The wedding party must flee for safety, collect their wits and process what's happening to them.  Is this an alien attack or Biblical prophecy coming true?  Many characters realize that they have missed the rapture and solidify their faith in God.  It's not an easy decision as it comes with consequences as demons are attracted to and attack new believers.  Is the quick death worth the risk?  Is it the right choice?

Not everyone embraces faith though.  People on both side of the fence die in this film.  I was surprised to see how some characters were given the option to die despite Revelation 9:6 stating that death would not come to those wounded.  

Despite the religious liberties and rapture backdrop, I found The Remaining to be quite thrilling and it succeeded in startling me on several occasions.  Some of the footage is done via camcorder or phone camera, but the rest looks decent with passable special effects.   This movie does not have a triple A budget and while I did not recognize the actors, some of them have other shows and films in their IMDb profile.  

The acting was good and the characters were likable.  The story held my interest and the scares kept me at the edge of my seat.  If you enjoy Christian themed movies and thrillers, check out The Remaining.

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Camp movie

Thank you Pure Publicity for sending us this DVD to review!

Many kids look forward to summer camp and coming back to their families after it's over. What about kids who have no families or come from abusive households? For those kids summer camp is the only place where they feel loved, safe, and cared for. Camp is about a young boy named Eli who loses his neglectful mom to a drug overdose and his abusive father isn't a big part of his life. 

Eli is sent to an orphanage and gets the opportunity to go to summer camp. He almost was rejected due to lack of help; however, an investment adviser named Ken has volunteered to help in order to woo one of his potential clients. At first Ken doesn't fit in or care about his peers or Eli, as he spends too much time with his cell phone instead. Eli tests his patience and character several times and almost gets sent home for his bad behavior. Camp teaches about hope, forgiveness, and second chances along with the reality of abuse and the neglect that many children live through. There is some violence and since it is directed at children, it's hard to watch without flinching. These events earn the movie's PG-13 rating.

Camp is an emotional rollercoaster that will have you laughing and wiping away tears of sadness. I can see what it's categorized as a Drama/Comedy. I highly recommend this movie as it tells a wonderful story (inspired by many true ones!) and encourages people to make a difference in the lives of children in need. The special features include stories from staff at Royal Family KIDS camps who share true stories that inspired and made it into the film. There is also a testimony from a girl whose life was transformed after visiting Royal Family KIDS camp. I'd say more, but I don't want to give away any spoilers. I highly recommend seeing this movie for yourself.


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God's Not Dead

Thank you Pure Publicity for sending us this movie to review!

Imagine if your college professor asked you to sign a paper stating that God is Dead. What would you do? Would you comply? Drop the class? Or take a stand? Matthew 10:33 states “But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” After that powerful verse what would you do? Would you still take a stand for God if your grades and relationship with your significant other were at stake? That's what Josh did in the movie God's Not Dead.

While the story told is not factual, it is based off of many recent lawsuits involving public universities and Christian students. Numerous popular Christians make an appearance including The Newsboys, Willie and Korie Robertson, and Kevin Sorbo who plays the protagonist professor.

There are a wide variety of characters including a vegan who is diagnosed with cancer and her successful yet unsupportive boyfriend. Several students from different backgrounds are portrayed including a rebellious female Muslim student who only wears her face covering around her father and sneaks it off at school. There's also a Chinese student in Josh's class who is intrigued by the possibility of God's existence, but when he talks to his father about it, he cuts him off every time.

Josh's presentations of the existence of God are well thought out and very informative. It's good to know that being Christian is not committing intellectual suicide! Granted, most college professors are not like professor Radisson, however there may be times where we'll have to take a stand for God. Do we have the faith and the strength to do it? This movie challenges you to send a text message to everyone on your phone's contact list that God's Not Dead. I have gotten this message from many of my friends and have reciprocated. Not only does it promote this great movie, it lets the world know that God is still very much alive.


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Ragamuffin

Ragamuffin is based off the life of Rich Mullins, who was a very talented Christian singer and song writer.  Although the title is unusual, it symbolizes “the burdened, the wobbly and weak-kneed, the inconsistent, unsteady disciples... the smart people who know they are stupid... the honest disciples who admit they are scalawags”*.  Rich Mullins was a little rough around the edges but he was clearly gifted, humble and on fire for God.  This movie depicts him in an honest light and shows him struggling with loving his father, drinking and cussing.  Because of this portrayal, I don’t recommend this movie for young children. 

The visuals are definitely low budget; they were going for the indie/ragamuffin look. (They succeeded.)   The story however is great and the musical talent of Michael Koch who portrays Rich is top notch.  If you’re a fan of Rich Mullins and his music (Awesome God, Creed, Elijah) I highly recommend checking this movie out.  

*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Ragamuffin_Band

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Ninendo's E3 Presentation Review

I've been looking forward to this year's E3 for a while now. With the confirmation that a new Zelda title would appear, and the fact that this E3 had to reveal something big about Smash Bros., I new that this E3 would be big for Nintendo. So how exactly did they do?

Unlike Sony and Microsoft, Nintendo did not hold a press conference this year. Instead, they held a digital event that showcases their games.

The conference starts with a stop-motion segment by Robot Chicken. I had never seen Robot Chicken before, but this segment, along with the others they do in the conference, was very funny and entertaining. It featured Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime talking about what was to come in the presentation and responding to a ranter about mistakes that were assumed to be made. Despite it being out of the norm, the stop-motion segments added to the enjoyment of the presentation.

After that, we see Reggie and Nintendo President Iwata duke it out. They try to beat each other up, but eventually decide to take their battle to Smash Bros. Here they reveal that Mii is going to be playable in Smash. You can play as a boxer, a swordsman, or a shooter. It was great to see that you will finally be able to play as yourself, especially with the choice of fighting styles.

They also revealed their new toyline amiibo. Similar to Disney Infinity and Skylanders, amiibo allows you to place your figure and play as them while also storing up data. The figures look very nice, and, as stated in my review to Disney Infinity, I'm a huge action figure collector. I'm definitely interested in how they're going to incorporate this in their future games.

Nintendo then talked about the new Zelda. Though not much was shown, what was shown was beautiful. Featuring a similar art style to The Wind Waker and Skyward Sword, this game looks absolutely amazing! They also clarified that this game will be completely open world, unlike previous Zelda games that were broken up into segments. Finally, the game will feature some sci-fi elements, like transforming mechanical arrows. Though I would have appreciated seeing more, it's nice to see what's coming and knowing that it's releasing next year.

The next games they talked about were Yoshi's Woolly World, Pokemon Alpha Ruby and Omega Saphire, Bayonetta 2, Hyrule Warriors, Xenoblade X, a Toad game, and a Kirby game. Yoshi's new game looks both beautiful and interesting. I've never cared too much for Yoshi, but this game actually looks fun. Bayonetta 2 revealed Nintendo costumes and the ability to play the original game. Hyrule Warriors revealed a multiplayer mode and Zelda and Midna as playable characters. I'm now actually interested in playing it. Both Toad and Kirby did not get much time, but neither look interesting anyway.

One notable mention is Nintendo's new Mario Maker for Wii U. It works similarly to LittleBigPlanet, except with Mario. You get to choose whether you want it to look like Super Mario Bros. or New Super Mario Bros. U. It looks very interesting and will definitely be something I'm going to try.

The last game they revealed was a game called Splatoon. This game has four teams trying to cover as much of the battlefield they're on with their color of paint. Honestly, I wasn't that impressed. It could be a great game. Knowing Nintendo, it probably will. But it didn't look like much more than a downloadable game.

After Splatoon, they then revealed another new Smash Bros. character, Lady Palutena from Kid Icarus: Uprising. Now that they've added Miis, I am glad to see that she has been added. After all, pretty much all Nintendo icons have been covered, so adding a new side character is fine. Also, she was quite funny in the game, and the reveal trailer seems to indicate the she will still be.

The final part of the presentation had Shigeru Miyamoto talking about games he has been developing for the Wii U. One of which is a new Star Fox game, though nothing more than a blurred screen was shown.

In the end, Nintendo's E3 presentation was one of the best (and funniest) I had seen in years. Though I would have appreciated seeing more of the new Zelda, I felt that most of their time was used wisely. Unlike Sony and Microsoft, Nintendo actually revealed a slew of games for their system. I felt very disappointed with Sony and Microsoft. Aside from a couple of HD remakes, the only game that caught my eye was LittleBigPlanet 3. Unfortunately, however, even it doesn't seem like it's going to be that interesting. With Smash Bros., the new Zelda, Yoshi's Woolly World, Hyrule Warriors, and Mario Maker, I think it's safe to say that Nintendo's line-up is definitely worth getting excited for.

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Son of God

Thank you Fox for sending us this DVD to review!

One of the most talked about TV shows from 2013 was The Bible Series.  While my family didn't watch it on Cable, we did purchase the series on Blu-ray and loved it!  Those who already own The Bible series on DVD or Blu-ray may want to pass up on Son of God if you’re looking for something different.  Most of the footage is re-used but re-arranged to focus on Jesus’ ministry, persecution, death, and resurrection. 

The movie is 138 minutes and there are lots of extras with commentary from Joel Osteen, Rick Warren, Charles Jenkins, and Touched by an Angel’s Dr. Della Reese-Lett.  There’s footage from behind the scenes and a promotion for Compassion International

Son of God is rated PG-13 for violence due to the beatings and cruel death our savior endured for our salvation.  The message is bold and powerful, my kids were moved to tears for the suffering Christ endured for them.  While this movie isn't as child friendly as Miracle Maker, it’s not as gory as The Passion of the Christ.    I’d say it’s a happy medium and a great evangelistic tool.  


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Slugterra: Ghoul From Beyond

Thank you Shout Factory for sending us this DVD to review!

Eli Shane and his friends are taking it easy after defeating the vile Dr. Blakk who used modified slugs for his evil purposes.  The Shane Gang get reports of similar type slugs in the 99 caverns and they head out there to investigate.  Eli confronts and does a battle with a new kind of slug that invades the mind, can he defeat him or has he met his match? This action packed adventure lasts 44 minutes and there is a cute slugisode in the bonus features titled Burpy & Friends Take a Dive. 

Fans of the Slugterra series will enjoy this DVD, but given how short it is, I’m not sure it’s worth the $15 asking price.  If you do see it on sale, it’s worth picking up though. 


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State of Construction

Hey guys.  Long time!

 

As a dreamer and idealist, I like to envision a better, bigger and stronger version of the gaming worlds I traverse.  Now I honestly hate any fiction that has something to do with zombies.  I will admit, there are pretty good series and movies out there that have excellent humour or even profound stories , but overall zombies seem too generic to pique my interest.   

I recently took a risk and got myself State of Decay.  State of Decay was originally an xbox exclusive, but it recently got ported over to PC.  SoD seems to have a few interesting concepts.  Like AMC's The Walking Dead, it's based on a survivalist community rather than just several generic characters.  This simple concept got me very excited, and hooked on the game.  A lot of action games share one characteristic these days - pure destruction.  Whether it's FPS, RPG or RTS, there will be opportunities that allow players to destroy static or dynamic entities in the world.  It has become such a popular theme, that we've forgotten how fun it can be to build up and out.  Minecraft is a prime example of the enjoyment embedded in creative and constructive games, but for someone with a liking of action or strategy - with good graphics - there's just a bulk of linear destructive games.

Back to the point!  So as I was saying, SoD allows you to build communities.  I see it as a pretty revolutionary game as there are multitudes of games covering the survival aspects of apocalypses and dilemmas, but not purposeful building and pursuit of prosperity.  It's fun defying the odds by gathering building materials, food and weapons...and scouting out new lofts.  There's also the issue of added responsibilities,  one has to consider the health and safety of fellow survivors.  

So SoD implements a really interesting concept, but the question arises: would it fly with other genres?

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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