D&A Anime Blog: “Sonic Beatdown” Fanfiction Title Will Be Posted in Two Weeks!!

The wait is almost over guys n’ gals! Our crossover fan fiction title Sonic Beatdown: Danganronpa Silver will have its first two chapters posted two weeks from tonight! We’re also happy to announce that we’ve gotten all of the professional equipment we need in order to make some ‘Grade-A’ style original, and video game remixes from our Chiptune/Trap/Electronic Music Producer; Marko Technocolor! We’ll keep you guys posted on these two developments as they begin to unfold within the coming weeks and months. Until next post, stay golden! 🙂

Sonic Beatdown (Danganronpa Silver) Fanfiction Title

D&A’s Crunchyroll Spotlight: Record of Grancrest War!

Guess who? Yeah, it’s the guys who own this anime blog. Hopefully your week hasn’t been to exhausting, cuz’ tomorrow is Friday (thank God)! So right on the books tonight is another anime title spotlight from our good friends at Crunchyroll. If you’re looking for a good fantasy/action title to watch that’s a bit like the Fate series (or something akin to that effect), then the title we’re shining the spotlight on, is Record of Grancrest War.

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Here’s the overview; the continent of Atlatan is threatened by demons from another dimension called Chaos, as the nobility fought back using crests that gave them superhuman powers. However the corruption of power soon got to their heads, as the nobles began fighting against each other to gain more crests as opposed to banning together to fight the demons. The series focuses on two characters; a mage named Siluca Meletes, and a wondering knight named Theo Cornaro. The two of them join forces along with their allies to end the war between the nobility, as well as destroy Chaos.

Knights, battles, and magic are what you’ll be in for with a title like this. There are 24 episodes total (which is about two 12-episode seasons), so it’s lengthy enough to give you some good plot and great battles. However, we’ll leave that decision to you.

So if this anime title is right up your alley, you can check it out on Crunchyroll! Until next post, stay gold my friends! 😉

Filler Post: D&A’s Ways 2 Save For Anime Conventions!

If you’re an anime fan, then you already well aware of how popular anime is in this modern day era. There’s titles for just about everyone; whether you’re an older fan, or a newbie trying to feel his/her way around the medium. The anime boom of the early 2000’s has given birth to what has now become a staple in the anime community, as well as the otaku lifestyle; anime conventions. These nerd sanctuaries and embassies have brought together fans from all ways of life who have one thing in common; their love and passion for anime.

If you were a 90’s kid (like ourselves), then you remember the days where you didn’t get a full season of a show on two or three DVDs like today. No, you only got two episodes on a VHS tape. Back then anime conventions only had at least 50 or 100 people; with only three or four going to an anime voice actor’s panel. (Not because they were bad, but because access to anime was still in its infancy stage. Basically before Youtube was invented.) It was also a lot cheaper to go to conventions back then, because the badges didn’t cost as much and because there weren’t as many con goers, it was easy to move around and get to the panels you wanted to get to. Try that now in 2018! XP

Now that we’ve given you a brief overview on what anime cons were like back in days of old, we’re going to get into one of the most taxing obstacles any anime fan faces when making the decision to go to an anime convention. There are four things you need to look at if you an your friends plan on attending the many sanctuaries of nerdom; Travel, Lodging, Membership, and your Meal Ticket. No matter what convention you go to (and this goes for other types of conventions), these four things are something that needs to be taken into account before making any plans to go to any convention – no matter how fun or exciting you think it’ll be.

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Travel

There are over 200 anime conventions all over the U.S. and a few in Hawaii. They only happen on the weekends so you don’t have to worry about them interfering with your work life, or something to that effect. Now that you’ve found a con that you want to go to, how will you get there? Depending on the location of the con, your travel expenses can range anywhere from $40-$400 (if you plan to fly or take a train). Most of us don’t drive, and by most we mean anyone under the age of 16, so that group of anime fans may have to rely on mom and dad to take them to the anime convention they want to go to. If your state has a local anime convention, then your travel expenses are actually going to be much lower. Remember, the farther you travel to get to your con, the more it’ll cost.

Lodging/Hotel Stay

Most anime conventions are held at the convention centers they’re based in, while others are held in what are called ‘host hotels’. Again, depending on the location of the convention itself, hotels that are only a few blocks from the event have contractual prices that are much lower than their standard ones. One example would be our Baltimore, MD home anime convention Animore; where the standard prices for a room at the Hyatt Regency are $199/night (plus tax), but the con prices are $119/night (plus tax). It’s hard to say what the true price range would be for staying at a hotel for an anime convention, but if we had to throw a ballpark figure, we’d say $99-$249/night depending on what hotel you’re staying in, and where the convention is located.

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Membership

Different conventions have different rates for membership badges. Some offer individual day memberships while others are only available for all three days. You won’t have to worry able membership prices being more than hotel or travel expenses, not unless you’re going to a high-end four day convention like Anime Expo or SDCC (where V.I.P. badges can be somewhere in the 200’s, money-wise).

Meal Ticket

Now this expense is probably the lowest and the cheapest of the four. If you happen to be staying at a hotel near the convention, odds are there are some good eateries in town. If you don’t want to spend any money on any food inside the hotel, there are usually places like Subway, Royal Farms, Taco Bell, and others in the area. (Depending where you are.)

And there you have it! The four things that are a must when planning on attending an anime convention. The fifth thing to also take into account is going shopping in the Dealer’s Room. Some anime conventions do indeed have some good deals on anime merchandise like T-shirts, DVD and Blu-Rays, figures, wall scrolls, and more. If you plan on doing any shopping, just make sure to take some extra cash with you.

Ready for some money saving tips?

Tip #1: Start an Anime Convention Fund!

This is the first step in planning for an anime convention. There are a couple of way that you can do this, but for this tip, we’ll use ourselves as an example. A. Goldman and I use security envelopes when we started our anime con fund, and every payday we put a portion of what we made at work that week into our con fund. How much you want to put away is up to you, but we’ve found that putting away between $150-$200 a month has helped ease most of the financial tension. This brings us to our second tip.

Tip #2: Space Out Your Convention Travels!

Con goers drop an average of anywhere between $500-$850 per convention, depending on which one you go do. Kicking out that much money at a con can take some time to build it back up for the next one, which is actually one of the reasons why we haven’t been able to go to as many conventions as we did last year. Spacing out your cons to about 1 1/2 to 2 months each can give you some time to build up your funds, that way when the dates for your convention comes up, you’ll have the money to burn! 😉

Tip #3: Close Any Financial “Loopholes” or “Leaks”!

Here’s what we mean by this; if you find yourself spending a little more money on a weekly basis on things that you want rather than need, then its time to cut back just a little bit! Downsizing to a small coffee and a sausage biscuit can actually save you a little money in the long run. This also means buying some of your clothes from the Thrift Shop from time to time. Little things like that will help close down some loopholes or leaks in your wallet, so that you’ll have a few dollars to work with for what’s really important.

So, let’s review, shall we?

The Four Things to take into Account when Planning to go to a Con

  • Travel
  • Lodging
  • Membership
  • Meal Ticket

Tips on Saving Money for a Con

  • Start an Anime Convention Fund
  • Space Out your Con Travels
  • Close any Loopholes or Leaks in your Finances

That’s it for this post guys n’ gals! As long as you keep these things in mind when getting ready for your next convention, you won’t feel the financial strain as much as you did before this post. Share this with anyone you think is having a little trouble saving money, and wants to enjoy going to anime conventions with friends or someone they love.

 

Filler Post: D&A’s Top 5 Toonami T.O.M. Speeches!

This one’s dedicated to all of the 90’s kids out there, and some 2000’s kids as well! Back in the 90’s there were lots of cartoons that grabbed out attention; such as Dexter’s Lab, Cow & Chicken, Power Rangers, and several others. Also around this time, we were introduced to one of the most popular action-packed animated programming blocks of the 20th century – that is still alive and kicking to this very day! for 21 years this programming block has been the cornerstone of our childhood; from shows like Dragon Ball Z, Sailor Moon, Yu-Yu Hakusho, Inuyasha, and more.

If you ever had the chance to experience Toonami during its early years, you may have gotten the opportunity to hear its first host; Moltar from Space Ghost. (God rest his soul.) From the mid 90’s to now Toonami has gone through a lot, and has also given us a lot in return. For this post we’re counting down our Top 5 inspirational speeches from our very own Toonami T.O.M. (aka, Steve Blum!)

Number 5: The Positivity Speech

They say we’re living in ‘Dark Times’ and bad news seems to follow us wherever we go, but one things for sure, you gotta dig deep…and find that extra dose of positivity!

Number 4: The Friends Speech

We all need someone to lean on, a shoulder we can cry on, and someone to laugh with. That’s what friends are for; they love you, they’re there when you need them, and if you have true friends, they’ll never let you down.

Number 3: The Respect Speech

Aretha Franklin said it best; R-E-S-P-E-C-T! Half of us out there really need to listen to that song more. The world doesn’t owe you a thing, so even if certain people don’t deserve it, you got to respect them. Their space, their way of life, everything. (That goes for guys and girls in relationships too, you have to give respect to gain it.)

Number 2: The Bullies Speech

You wanna know the real reason why bullies pick on you? We’ll give you a hint; it’s the one thing you possess that makes you different from all the rest…

Number 1: The Dreams Speech

It’s true, a lot of us have dreams of being or doing something we have our hearts set on. A wise man once said, that dreams are repressed desires of the things in life we wish we could have. The coolest part about dreams is the fact that we have the power to make them a reality, but in spite of the fact that life can throw you a curve ball, you never EVER want to give up on your dreams!

Toonami has gotten us through some tough times growing up, but if you remember hearing these and other speeches, then you know that you’re not alone. That will do it for this post, but never forget the wise words from this legendary program.

Bang! 😉

Filler Post: D&A’s Top 5 Anime Cliffhangers!

Picture yourself in this situation; you’re finally on the last episode of one of your favorite anime titles (you don’t have to tell us which one), and just when the action reaches its climax, the series ends in an abrupt freeze frame or you see the all too familiar “To Be Continued…” title card come into play. Yep, you’ve officially experienced your first cliffhanger – which actually makes an anime title that much more exciting (because they leave you wanting more)!

Throughout the years cliffhangers in anime have done one of two things; leave the door open for sequels or somewhat of a continuation through the movie, or cause the series as a whole to take a hiatus (leaving any inkling of a sequel to be carried out through the manga). Whatever the case may be, an anime title with a great plot as well as character development may sometimes come with a cliffhanger, so to that here are our Top 5 picks that end in said cliffhangers.

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Number 5: Corpse Princess: Shikabane Hime

Although this series has several years on it, it’s filled with a lot of action as well as some funny moments. Makina and Ouri manage to track down the Seven Stars and come across Hokuto, who turns out to be their true leader. During the final episode we’re treated to a battle between Makina and Hokuto as the former fights against the latter in order to help her understand what it means to live and die. The episode cuts off abruptly, as the viewers wonder how the end of the fight turned out – but I guess we’ll never know. (BTW, the episode afterwards is an OVA about the ‘original’ corpse princess.)

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Number 4: Deadman Wonderland

This title’s another good one to check out if you haven’t already done so. Deadman Wonderland tells the story of Ganta as he finds himself inside a prison/amusement park for a crime he didn’t commit; slaughtering all of his classmates. Using his own blood as a weapon Ganta and Shiro find themselves fighting against other inmates that want him dead, all the way up to the final episode – which leaves you hanging. There may not be a second season to this awesome title (even though we wish there was), but the manga picks up where the anime left off.

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Number 3: Attack On Titan

One of the most successful anime titles of its time is getting a third season! Attack On Titan is an action-packed nail biter that has its fans on the edge of their seats, in most cases. Aside from making a big footprint in commercial success in Japan as well as America, the final episode of the first season left us with a cliffhanger so huge, that it almost gave its fanbase a heart attack. With season three on the way, we’re hopeful that a lot of the questions fans have will be answered.

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Number 2: Akame ga Kill

One of the most anticipated anime titles of 2014, Akame ga Kill was filled with all of the bounty-hunting, evil-slaughtering action that you’d find in a type of series like this. Every episode was just as action-packed as the last up until the final episode of the series that leaves us in cliffhanger limbo. All that’s left is a rather intensive battle that cuts off abruptly, leaving you wondering what ever happened to the remaining members of Night Raid. Still, this is a title that newer anime fans looking for action-packed thrills should check out!

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Number 1: Claymore

In yet another action-packed anime series, Claymore tells the story of Raki and Clare (who are Claymores) as they battle against a monstrous demon race known as the Yoma. Every episode indeed does leave you wanting more, however once you reach the final episode of the series, you’re treated to a scene where Clare goes up against her greatest nemesis. However, you’re left in suspense due to the fact that results of the battle are up in the air, but even so, this series tells a beautiful story that’s worth looking into.

That’s it for our Top 5 as well as our week! We wish you guys a Happy Mother’s Day to all of the mothers in your lives you helped make you, who you are.

Until next week, stay golden! 😉

Filler Post: D&A’s Top 5 Ani-Minions (aka, Most Loyal Henchmen/Henchwomen)!

Every hero needs a sidekick! Well, not all of them do, as a percentage of them are anti-heroes that prefer to work alone. When it comes to villains however, just about all of them have a few henchmen to help take some of the villainous load off. Anime is no exception to this rule; as many of us fans have seen our fare share of what we like to call ‘Ani-Minions’, execute whatever orders their boss commands them to. Some of them have a ‘Saturday Morning Cartoon Villain Sidekick’ complex, while others can be just as ruthless as their boss. (If you want to go even deeper, sometimes the main henchman or woman turns out to be the primary antagonist the whole time!)

As with the main villains of the story, we’ve come to love some of the many second-in-command (or bottom of the barrel) henchmen that stay loyal to the cause; to be a pain in the butt for the protagonist. Tonight we bring you our Top 5 Ani-Minions that are loyal to the game of evil.

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Number 5: Team Rocket (Original Members: Jesse, James, and Meowth)

Speaking of Saturday Morning Cartoons, who could forget this trio sent by Giovanni in an effort to capture Ash’s Pikachu – for the umteenth time! Much like a certain mustachioed evil scientist, Team Rocket is loyal to the cause and will do whatever it takes to get that Pikachuuuuu!!!!! XP

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Number 4: Mukuro Ikusaba

Although she doesn’t get as much screen time (except when around her sister), Mukuro is one of the Despair Sisters who assisted Junko with her plans to cause despair throughout Hope’s Peak Academy. She admired her sibling and stayed loyal to her, even though Junko tried to kill her by stabbing her with an ice pick – which she blocked. She didn’t last long however; as she ended up portraying her sister two years after trapping the 78th class inside the school, only to die two episodes in on Danganronpa: The Animation.

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Number 3: Hokuto (The True Leader of the Seven Stars)

Hokuto is a powerful Shikabane who was created as a living human sacrifice; born to be killed as a child. Because of this she has no regrets, no obsessions, or even nature within her; making her one of the most powerful Shikabane yet! She’s a henchwoman who is really the primary antagonist of Makina and Ouri, as well as the true leader of the Seven Stars.

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Number 2: Kabuto Yakushi

There’s not a single Naruto fan who doesn’t recognize this face. The last time he was heard from was 2017, but for those who remember this medical Sound ninja, Kabuto is Orochimaru’s right-hand man who works for hims as a spy for various villages and people (including the Akatsuki). Naruto’s had a few run-ins with this grey-haired foe, as he can hold his own in battle with his Chakra Scalpel Technique. He was so loyal to Orochimaru he literally infused some of his cells into his own body – of course we all know how that story turned out…

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Number 1: Captain Ginyu and the Ginyu Force

You can’t talk about the Frieza Saga without talking about one of the most loyal forces this side of the cosmos. They are the G-I-N-YU Force! Bound by loyalty to Frieza, Ginyu and his gang make their way to Planet Namek to assist in finding the Namekian dragon balls, all while dishing out their own brand of pain against the Z-Warriors. In spite of the fact that they all fell to mostly Vegeta (with Ginyu becoming a frog and dying later), the Ginyu Force stayed committed to the cause and were one of the most enthusiastic, confident, and loyal henchmen around!

That’s it for our Top 5! More posts to come so keep it locked n’ loaded next time on D&A Anime Blog; where anime is a part of you! 🙂

 

Filler Post: D&A’s Top 5 Anime Franchises!

When it comes to anime in general, there’s all types for all fans from all walks of life. There’s anime for horror fans, sci-fi fans, rom-com fans, crime and mystery fans, fantasy fans, and a whole lot more! Every once in a while the anime community is blessed to stumble across an anime franchise; a title so big that it’s stood the test of time. Whether its a die-hard fanbase dedicated to the show in all its glory, or a show that has gained a cult-like following over several decades, these five franchises that we’ve got for you in this filler post have done one or the other – or both!

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Number 5: Naruto

Since 2001 the orange jacket ninja from the Hidden Leaf Village has made a name for himself as well as gained an impressive following, that is still going strong to this day. There isn’t a single anime convention in the U.S. or anywhere else where you won’t find people cosplaying Naruto or any of the other Hidden Leaf ninja (Akatsuki included). From manga to video games this action-packed series continues to play with the ‘big boys’ of the industry, and with Boruto around it doesn’t show any signs of stopping!

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Number 4: Danganronpa

Although it hasn’t been around as long as titles like DBZ or Inuyasha has, Danganronpa has held its own in terms of gaining a grand following. Spawning two anime titles, three main PlayStation video game installments (with a spin-off title and another one on the way), Makoto Naegi and his classmates are carving a hell of a path for themselves! We guess they have the franchise’s mascot and main villain, Monokuma, to thank for that!

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Number 3: Gundam

You can’t talk about popular anime franchises without talking about Gundam. This science-fiction franchise not only has a dedicated (90’s and 2000’s) fanbase, but it makes up 90% of the Japanese plastic-model market as well as pull in 80 billion Yen a year! Yeah, Gunpla is a serious business yo! 😉

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Number 2: Sailor Moon

One of the pioneering anime titles of the 90’s has already gotten a reboot as well as a (still) dedicated following. Sailor Moon as well as the other Sailor Scouts can still be found at any of your local anime conventions, as well as others across the U.S. and the world! These planet-named heroines will stop at nothing to save the world from darkness, so if you haven’t seen their adventures yet, you can stream their newest ones on Crunchyroll or FunimationNow. (Buy the DVD from RightStuf too!)

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Number 1: Dragon Ball Z

One of the biggest franchises of all time has to be the Dragon Ball franchise! We’ve watched Goku grow up from a little kid, to being one of the most powerful saiyans raised on planet Earth. From movies to games DBZ has stood the test of time, and has gained a following that spans from almost three generations. Although it took an eighteen year hiatus the Dragon Ball franchise returned with two movies and Dragon Ball Super. There is one more movie coming after Super ends, but we’ve also heard through the grapevine, that another season might be coming – might!

There’s many other anime franchises out there that we haven’t covered, but just like the ones above they will hold a special place in our hearts. That will do it for this Top 5 filler post as of right now, but there’s more on the way! 🙂

Honorable Mentions:

  • One Piece
  • Pokemon
  • Bleach
  • Case Closed
  • Inuyasha
  • Evangelion
  • Attack on Titan
  • FMA
  • SAO