Author Archives: Crimson

REG in Singapore Vol. 9: More immersive than ever!

4 May , 2015,
Crimson
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If you’ve been following some of our posts about Real Escape Game in Singapore‘s events, then you’ll know we’re suckers for immersive reality games.

Vivid Creations and SCRAP, the creators of Real Escape Game in Japan, first teased their plans for an island-wide event sometime last year during the press preview for their Shingeki no Kyojin inspired REG, and we’re really glad to know that their latest adventure – Escape from the Conspiracy – will turn the entirety of Singapore’s downtown and heritage belt into a puzzle-lover’s playground!

Check out the trailer below:

Games will run every weekend in June 2015, and get this – there is no time limit! This means that you can play as long as you want and take as long as you want, so long as you’re done within the day.

If you’re interested, check out their ticketing information and website below:

Escape from The Conspiracy

VENUE: Singapore Art Museum (Briefing Location)

DATES: Every Saturday and Sunday in June 2015

TIME: 11:00, 12:00, 13:00 (Game Briefing)

TICKET PRICING:

Limited Early Bird (Single): $22 | Limited Early Bird (Group of 6): $120 | Standard Online (Single): $27 | Standard Online (Group of 6): $150 | At‐the‐door: $30 |
For block / corporate booking, please contact us at 6522‐0527 or shihui@vivid-creations.biz
Tickets are available on PEATIX platforms: http://reg-theconspiracy-day1.peatix.com (Day 1)
For updates and more information, visit our website: http://www.realegame.sg
• No time limit.
• All sessions are conducted in English.

Heroes of the Storm Open Beta announced

22 Apr , 2015,
Crimson
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HoS_Announce_976x250EN

If you’ve followed our work, then you know that we’re huge Blizzard fans. That’s why we’re super excited that Heroes of the Storm is finally going into OBT, and that’s news we wanna share.

Recently, Blizzard announced that the OBT is set for 20.05.15, with the official launch on June 3. We’ve also caught wind that AsiaSoft, the official HotS publisher for South East Asia has plenty of exciting activities planned to usher in this kick-ass team brawler.

Screenshot2015-04-23 13_33_57

So in this throwback to Uldum, you’ve got to capture temples that shoot lasers at the enemy base.

Screenshot2015-04-23 13_25_22

One thing we’ve enjoyed about the maps is how flavorful they are. Collecting skulls in the Haunted Mines gives you a pretty kickass NPC helper, for example.

Screenshot2015-04-23 13_20_23

The meaner and uglier they look, the more fun they are to play. Azmodan’s a great pusher, for example.

Of course, we’ve been playing this game in between building costumes and running cons, and the most awesome thing about OBT is that there will be no further wipes. Any current progress or hero unlocks in the CBT will carry over to the OBT and post launch, which means no more grinding from 1 to 40 again or unlocking heroes and talents, folks.

We’ve had a ton of fun in the Alpha and CBT, and if you’d like to try your hand at a team brawler that’s fairly easy to get into and revisit some old friends from Blizzard’s kickass titles (there’s even The Lost Vikings, come on!), then Heroes of the Storm’s for you.

If you’d like to get an early start on Heroes before it goes into OBT, be sure to click on over to AsiaSoft’s Heroes portal to grab yourselves some Beta keys (note that this redemption is open to users in Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore only, with limited keys available daily).

We’ll see you folks in the Nexus!

Catching The Avengers: Age of Ultron with Subway Singapore

Apr , 2015,
Crimson
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The Subway brand has always been pretty forward looking with their marketing, having supported fashion shows, concerts and independent film makers. That’s why we weren’t surprised, and were even a little impressed when Subway Singapore decided to work the pop-culture angle.

Apart from releasing a hilarious TVC featuring their latest tuna bacon melt, the company also called upon fans to partake of an online contest to win tickets to The Avengers: Age of Ultron. Cosplayers were also invited to attend the screening in costume (kudos to the good folks at Here Be Geeks for making this happen), and all in all, this made for a pretty interesting evening.

Superfans and cosplayers mingled at the event area just before the screening.

Superfans and cosplayers mingling at the event area just before the screening.

We spotted some of our cosplay friends in the mix.

We spotted some of our awesome cosplay friends. Sadly, Ultron didn’t put in an appearance. 🙁

As for the movie proper, we’re going to give you the lowdown and hopefully keep it as spoiler-free as possible.

The Avengers: Age of Ultron is the sequel to 2012’s big hit, and picks up following the dissolution of S.H.I.E.L.D. Tired of all the fighting and hoping to create a lasting peace, Iron Man Tony Stark decides to mess with powers beyond his ken and this leads to the creation Ultron, a sentient peace-keeping software.

The program soon runs-amok, and the team comprising Black Widow, Captain America, Hawkeye, Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk and Thor have to band together to stop him. Along the way they encounter Pietro and Wanda Maximoff (Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch), and in true comic book fashion, the good guys eventually win but at great cost.

Needless to say, the movie is formulaic. It fits the mould of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies to a T and is laden with action, top-notch CGI and special effects (we especially loved the Hulkbuster moments). Hardcore comic book fans might notice that Ultron’s origin story deviates from the original, but that’s something I’d forgive considering everything else.

For an ensemble movie with such a large cast, Joss Whedon does a brilliant job of telling the story. The pacing, even if it’s a little forced at times, also kind of worked in his favor.

The film opens in-media-res with a massive raid on a Hydra base in Sokovia, and the action doesn’t really let up. That’s why I’m especially glad for the small pockets of peace and contemplation that take place between the fighting and explosions.

These scenes give more emphasis to characters like Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye (whom I’d like to call the most death-flagged character in MCU history), and helped develop the burgeoning romance between Bruce Banner and Natasha Romanov.

Fans of course can also expect easter eggs galore, and more than a few tie-ins to happenings in other franchises (such as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D). There was plenty of foreshadowing as well, and we know for a fact that The Avengers are all set for The Infinity War when it releases in 2018.

Overall, it’s a great geek fix for this weekend.

If you haven’t yet, check out the trailer below:

REG Vol. 8: The Last Garden

9 Feb , 2015,
Crimson
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We’ve supported Real Escape Game in Singapore since it’s inception several years back, and they’ve never ceased to impress. Now into it’s 8th edition, they look set to wow us even further with The Last Garden, which appears to be their most ambitious adventure yet!

Promo image courtesy of Vivid Creations.

Promo image courtesy of Vivid Creations.

This time, the story revolves around a futuristic Singapore in the year 2065, and players are tasked with finding a legendary orb hidden in Gardens by the Bay to save humanity.

Unlike previous iterations, players have free range of Gardens by the Bay, and no time limit from the venue’s opening to closing to play and solve the puzzles. What’s more, the timing is near perfect for a perfect for geeky couples on the Valentine’s Day weekend, and there’s a couples promotion to make this a date with a difference.

We’re thinking of saving the date ourselves. If you’re a fan of Real Escape Games too, then this is definitely something to consider.

LAST GARDEN: Save Nature, Save Humanity

VENUE: GARDENS BY THE BAY
DATES: 13-22 FEB 2015
SESSION TIMINGS:
13-15 FEB 2015 | 20-22 FEB 2015: 11:00 – 20:00
16-19 FEB 2015: 15:00 – 20:00

TICKET PRICING: Limited Early Bird: $27* | Limited Couple Promo: $50* | Group Promo (buy 5 get 1 free): $165* | Standard Online: $33* | At‐the‐door: $35* | * Inclusive of ticket fee and entry fee to Flower Dome

For block / corporate booking, please contact 6522‐0527 or info@realegame.sg
Tickets are available on PEATIX platforms: http://lastgarden.peatix.com
For updates and more information, visit http://www.realegame.sg

2015 Events and a Site Overhaul

14 Jan , 2015,
Crimson
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Can you believe it? It’s been four years since we’ve been in operation. That’s why it’s no surprise our site is due for a massive, massive revamp.

While we’re retooling the corporate site, we’re keeping the blog up and running so we can keep you apprised of the latest news and happenings at NTP, and in Singapore’s pop-culture scene.

For a start, be sure to block 25-26 April 2015 and 22-23 August 2015 in your pop-culture calendars, folks, because we’ve set those dates in stone for our flagship events.

djmicds2015

Yep, like the image says. Save the date, folks!

We’ll also be launching the alpha test of our very own card game this year, a book about the positive impact of cosplay in Singapore, and more.

Watch this space, folks, because our corporate site will return better and more streamlined than ever. In the mean, why not follow us on Facebook?

Print Transfers onto EVA

23 Oct , 2014,
Crimson
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Update: Due to bandwidth issues, this tutorial has been replicated on Facebook.  You can access the complete tutorial here.

Recently, we discovered a simple method to transfer printed images onto EVA and we’re pretty excited since it makes replicating filigree and complex patterns so much easier. If you’d like to try your hand at it too, here’s a simple tutorial detailing the steps we took.

What you’ll need:

1. Some latex glue and white acrylic paint

2. EVA foam

3. Paper (110 gsm or better stock)

4. A printer (we used a laser printer)

5. Acrylic Gel Medium

6. Water and dish-washing sponge

7. Paper towels

Step 1:

Mix Latex glue and White acrylic paint together. Prime your EVA surface with a single layer this mixture. This is to prepare it for the transfer process.

Let it dry completely.

Step 2:

Create the pattern or graphic you’d like to transfer onto EVA in graphic software.

Don’t forget to flip the image horizontally, because you’re printing the mirror image of this file onto the foam later.

Print the file out on reasonably good quality paper. Also, make sure you’re using a toner based printer (laser printer) rather than an inkjet as ink might not transfer well.

Step 3:

Coat the primed surface of the EVA foam with Acrylic Gel Medium. Gel Medium is what you’ll use to create the transfer, and you can purchase it at most art supply stores (such as Art Friend and Straits Art Co.).

Let the gel set for a little while, and apply your print out to the gel covered foam. You are essentially ‘pasting’ the print out to the foam with the acrylic gel.

Be sure to align your printed image properly, because this is a one-time process. Peeling off the printed image will ruin the process and you’ll have to start over.

Once you’re done, leave the project to dry for a day or so.

Step 4:

Immerse the foam with the print transfer in water. Soak it until the paper begins to fray and dissolve (usually about 15 minutes) and gently rub it off.

This part of the process is the most time consuming, and requires both patience and a steady hand.

Step 5:

Give the surface of the foam a good rinse after you’ve peeled off all the paper to get rid of stubborn fibers.

Pat dry the surface with paper towels, and leave to air dry.

Finally, seal the surface with acrylic lacquer and you’re all set for further crafting and embellishments.

Terror in Resonance Preview

10 Jul , 2014,
Crimson
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Key visual 1

Schoolyard terrorists and their unwilling accomplice.

I have to confess that I’m something of an elitist when it comes to anime.

I pick series for concept and auteurial direction rather than cheesy character designs (flat-chested moeblob girls and overly whiny boys of destiny with chips on their shoulders simply don’t appeal to me), and that’s why I’m always excited when something existential comes along and bucks the trend each season.

Zankyō no Teroru, or Terror in Resonance, is one of the latest offerings by Shinichiro Watanabe, a director whose illustrious pedigree includes the classic Cowboy Bebop (1998) and Samurai Champloo (2004). Joining forces with him is renowned composer Yoko Kanno, who composes both the OP and ED.

The series takes place in an alternate history Tokyo, playing out as a deadly game of cat-and-mouse between two teenaged terrorists and the police. Thanks to the media preview by the great folks at Aniplus HD yesterday, I caught not ONE, but TWO episodes and I’m now hooked.

Without giving too much of the plot away, Terror in Resonance touches on some very real issues – bullying, peer pressure, stereotyping in the traditional Japanese system – woven seamlessly into the requisite cloak and dagger style meta.

Check out the official promo video here:

Terror in Resonance will premiere on ANIPLUS HD on 21 July 2014, every Monday, 11pm. ANIPLUS HD will be simulcasting the series, bringing the anime to South East Asia screens during the same period as Japan, one new episode each week.

Catch this latest anime series first and exclusively on ANIPLUS HD available on:

• Singtel mio TV Ch340, on Demand at Ch341, and

• Toggle.sg

Guest DJs and Artists announced for STGCC

12 Jun , 2014,
Crimson
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Be prepared to be wowed this year, as STGCC returns with fresh content and personalities set to appeal to pop-culture fans.

stgcc2014_1

Images courtesy of: Singapore Toy, Games and Comic Convention 2014.

In a press release yesterday, Reed Exhibitions announced three renowned DJs from Japan – Inu, D.watt and sasakure.UK, who will be spinning the latest hits from popular Japanese games and anime at a one-of-a-kind STGCC DJ Night. Fans can expect to be wowed by a combination of anime music, Touhou, and Vocaloid riffs for sure.

Additionally, three multi-talented artists, including one of our personal favorites – Humberto Ramos, who is best known for his anime style approach to Western comics such as Marvel’s Spiderman, The Runaways and several creator owned series, Alex Solis, the father of “The Famous Chunkies” featuring oversized superheroes, and Simone Legno, the creator of the popular tokidoki brand.

STGCC 2014 will take place on the 6th and 7th of September at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Marina Bay Sands, and STGCC tickets are up for grabs now at $19 for a one-day pass and $25 for a two-day pass from selected authorised retailers.

Be sure to check out the official STGCC page for ticketing information, and don’t forget to follow them on Facebook for more updates!

Real Escape Game Vol. 6: Escape From the Moon Base

25 May , 2014,
Crimson
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If you’ve been following the great folks at Real Escape Game in Singapore, you’ll know that they’ve been doing some pretty amazing stuff. These guys popularized Escape the Room games in Singapore, and in just a couple weeks, will be returning with a sixth installment in their line-up.

Dubbed Escape From the Moon Base, this iteration will put players in the role of survivors in a space station disaster, who will have to race against time to complete challenging math, logic, linguistics and visual puzzles before air runs out.

If you’d like to play, here are the details:

Real Escape Game Vol. 6: Escape From the Moon Base

Venue: National Design Center

Dates: 7, 8, 14, 15 June 2014

Session Timings: 

7 JUNE 2014 – 13:00 | 15:30 | 18:30 | 21:00
8 JUNE 2014 – 11:00 | 14:00 | 16:30 | 19:30
14 JUNE 2014 – 11:00 | 14:00 | 16:30 | 19:30
15 JUNE 2014 – 11:00 | 14:00 | 16:30 | 19:30

TICKET PRICING: Limited Early Bird: $22 | Standard: $27 | At‐the‐door: $30

Tickets can be purchased from SISTIC here, and prices listed exclude SISTIC charges.

If you’d like to find out more, be sure to check out the official Real Escape Game in Singapore Facebook page, or email them here for more information. 

PSO2 goes English, and we love it!

3 Apr , 2014,
Crimson
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Asiasoft announced that they were publishing Phantasy Star Online 2 in English (PSO2) about a week ago, and just this afternoon, I got several hours hands on with the game during a closed door media preview.

Having already tried the Japanese service, I had some high hopes. This was a Sega title, after all.

For the uninitiated, PSO2 is an MMOARPG (the ‘A’ here stands for action, in case you were wondering) with console style graphics and aesthetics where you play an ARK recruit in a sci-fi setting.

With the customization options, you can pretty much adjust anything. Well, almost anything. :x

With the customization options, you can pretty much adjust anything. Well, almost anything.

ARK recruits are essentially the equivalent of space cadets, and once you’ve customized your character (and the level of customization is quite comprehensive) and picked one of several races and classes (with localized archetypal names of warrior, ranger, and wizard), you’re thrust into a fairly deep and involved story line with all the hallmarks of a classic JRPG.

The good thing of course is that the game can be played solo or with friends, and features instanced dungeon maps linked to a central hub. Friends, naturally, make things go a whole lot smoother.

Beat on alien life-forms, steal their treasure, have fun with friends.

Beat on alien life-forms, steal their treasure, have fun with friends.

I was a little sad that I didn’t get to roll a Deuman or Braver at the outset, but I’m sure that the good folks at Asiasoft will be making them available sometime in the near future. *hinthint*

Now, on to the localization.

One of the biggest challenges I’d expected this release to face was the dialogue and the VOs. The original Japanese cast included some top name seiyuu, and matching up would be a tall order. It was a pleasant surprise when I discovered that rather than dubbing the NPCs over, the company had chosen to streamline the written dialogue instead, without compromising any of the nuances from the original.

And that, of course, was a win in my books.

Needless to say, PSO2 is a game best experienced, and with the Beta test coming up 10th to 13th April, we’re giving away some Beta keys to a few lucky readers who live in  Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, or the Philippines.

These keys will also give you early access when the game goes live sometime in the next two months, so be sure to check out our Facebook raffle  for more details!

You can also keep tabs on the latest developments PSO2 in English developments through their official Facebook page.