Tag: A&E

April 2, 2018 Articles Published

I have an unexpected two-for-one deal for everyone in the audience today.

That’s right, one newspaper, two Jason-branded stories. Deal of the century folks, I can tell you that much now!

… Okay, so I guess that’s not really a novel situation for me to be in all things considered, but it really did come up at the last-minute in today’s case. See, it all began with an unfortunate bit of timing.

Though it wasn’t exactly ‘unfortunate’ for me necessarily. But I’m overly qualifying each statement at this point so I’ll stop fooling around.

Last Friday, my family had plans to go see the new Steven Spielberg film “Ready Player One.” We all absolutely loved the book, so it has been on our list of things to do together pretty much since the film was first announced. Our tickets were purchased well in advance…

But then my Dad got stuck with work at the last-minute. Since he couldn’t go, my sister and Mom didn’t want to go either. The only issue with that was I had already promised our Lifestyle editor Hannah a review of the film. Plus we had four tickets already bought.

So I did the next best thing and brought my friends to a free movie.

As much as I wound up being disappointed that I couldn’t gush about how much I liked the movie with my family that night, it was a pretty dope day hanging out with my friends, playing video games and seeing a movie.

Also, as I just mentioned, I really liked “Ready Player One.” It’s not exactly a heavily story-driven film by any means, and the actors aren’t anything to write home about… But visually the film is just gorgeous, especially for the way it diversified each world the heroes travel between.

Plus, despite not exactly being super accurate to the book, the different take on Cline’s overall framework is pretty cool in its own right, so I’d argue the movie is a perfect companion to the book rather than being a replacement for it.

Sort of like the characters going through similar situations, but in alternate universes. That’s the best way I can think to put it.

I obviously don’t want to play all my cards here and not direct you right to the review, so you can see my thoughts on the film through this link here. All I’ll add at this point is that I highly recommend seeing it just for an enjoyably pretty moviegoing experience.

Especially with the Stanley Kubrick scene in the middle of the film that just continues to blow my mind with how gorgeous it was.

However, as promised, I still have more to go into.

See my first day back from Spring Break in the newsroom was a busy one. I was essentially juggling five different things all at the same time.

Not only was I fact checking and section editing stories as usual, I was also helping to set everything up for my movie review, transcribing out a 47-minute-long interview for a profile I’m working on (more to come on that soon enough), studying for two exams I have this week and working on a completely different story I was thrown at the last-minute.

Over the break, a 19-year-old man who does not attend CSUF was visiting some friends in the University House apartments near campus. At some point, for one reason or another, he fell off the third floor balcony and was hospitalized in a  “critical” but not “life threatening” condition.

Even though the event happened early on into the break, our advisor wanted us to do some sort of follow-up. That responsibility went to me.

I tried to get in touch with our University Police department, but they were not involved in the case and directed me to Fullerton Police.

So I called Fullerton Police and had to cycle through multiple different departments, likely because people were off thanks to Easter. Eventually I did manage to get in touch with Sergeant Dan Castillo, who gave me some real basic information but directed me to the officer who was a watch commander that night.

A few hours later, when Lieutenant Michael Chlebowski was in the office, I called back and talked with him for some more specific details about the case and why the Fullerton Police won’t be following up on it.

It was an easy 300 words to write, and even then my editors cut it down quite a bit from the looks of the final piece, but I can’t really complain. With Comm 471, easy points are easy points.

If you want to read that story in its entirety, check it out here.

You can also see my full archive of writing for the Daily Titan over on the right!

March 20, 2018 Article Published

Got a fun one for everybody today. None of this dreary breaking news or government business.

No.

Today we’ve got Kirby.

This past weekend was a fun one between getting Star Allies for the Switch and going to see Hollywood Babble-On with my dad. It didn’t exactly help my exhaustion levels, but that’s what Spring Break is probably going to be for next week.

So long as I don’t abuse the freedom by not sleeping ever…

But that’s beside the point. Unless of course that lack of sleeping comes as a result of playing more Kirby. Which is a very strong possibility.

I’ve been having a great time playing the game thus far, as it is frankly difficult to not have a good time playing a Kirby game. That’s one of the main points I hit in the review I wrote for the Daily Titan today.

One of the other points, unfortunately, was the fact that the game strikes me as being so easy and quick-to-beat that it may not be worth the pricy $60 investment for some.

It will be worth the investment for me personally thanks to my obsessive desire to collect every puzzle piece, beat the time trial and arena modes with each character type and ultimately achieve a 100 percent completion rating. Plus, the game will undoubtedly make for a fun multiplayer experience with my friends over the break and going into the near future.

I won’t go super into detail about my thoughts and opinions on Kirby in this blog post because I do delve into it more succinctly in my review.

On top of that, I’m also planning on possibly publishing a separate “Director’s Cut” review here in the future. Either that or a post I’m imagining describing how the game goes wrong for my tastes.

But for those, we’ll just have to see what time allows.

For now, if you want to read my review in its entirety, you can check it out here. I’m always excited to get to meld my passions together after all!

You can also see my full archive of work for the Daily Titan over on the right.

February 13, 2017 Article Published

I frankly relish the opportunities I get to mix work with leisure once in a while.  Like when I had the chance to review Pokémon Sun and Moon for the Daily Titan, this week I published an article reviewing my latest mobile game obsession: Fire Emblem Heroes.

After the practice I had writing that Pokémon review last semester, this one felt much easier to craft overall.  The only really difficult thing about it came in the juxtaposition between how I tend to write and the publication’s necessities.  While I can easily write over 3,000 words dissecting the smallest things in a video game (as I’ve proven here time and time again), a general newspaper audience likely won’t care much for seeing me geek out for that long.

Thus, it was up to our A&E editor, Kaleb, to help reign me in and simmer down my work into something more succinct that hits right at the heart of the strengths and weaknesses of the game.  He’s an awesome editor and an even greater guy to spend time with, and without his help I’d still be stuck with an over-embellished description of the differences between hand-to-hand weapons, magic and colorless units in the game.

He also does some pretty stellar reviews for the paper.  I’d recommend his pretty recent Resident Evil 7 review, since I’m sure that’ll appeal to the kind of audience I tend to draw.  He even did a multimedia live talking review about the game to go along with it, which is pretty sweet!

Even with Kaleb’s help, my article still wound up being the longest thing he published at about 800-900 words or so… But to be completely fair, this article might not technically be published in the same sense as the rest of my work for the DT.  Because of some spacing concerns in our special weeklong sex-themed issue, A&E had to cut their page and run all their stories online.  So this review wasn’t put out in print, but it was published online.

Luckily, for my purposes here, that’s more than good enough.

While there are plenty of things I feel have been left out of the review from the perspective of someone who obsesses too much over a game when he enjoys it, I still really like how this piece turned out.  I’m sure if I ever want to dig deeper into the gameplay strategies and mechanics, or if I want to talk about my five star monsters Tiki and Minerva, I’ll write up a separate post some time in the near future.

If you want to see the review in its entirety, you can see it here.  You can also check out my whole archive of work for the Daily Titan through the link over on the right!

Fire Emblem Heroes: Doing fan service right

Fire Emblem Heroes: Doing fan service right

Today, after I finished with my classes, I started messing around with Fire Emblem Heroes, the new mobile game released by Nintendo just a few hours ago.  When the game was talked about just a few weeks ago in the Fire Emblem Direct I got pretty excited for it just based on the concept of a mobile phone Fire Emblem experience alone, and now that it’s here I’m very eagerly digging into every detail I can.

So far, I have nothing but good things to say about the game.  It has really solid design, gameplay and enough content within to probably have quite a long shelf life.  Of course, I’ve only spent about an hour or two playing, so I’ll be forming my opinions a bit more succinctly over the next couple of days.

As a matter of fact, I’m planning on writing a review of the game for the Daily Titan for our Monday edition this upcoming week.  I’ll have my most well-developed thoughts on paper for that.  However, depending on how much space I get on Kaleb’s A&E page, I might just be writing a more extended view of the game here after that comes out.

Until then, I’ll be around.  Playing games and doing homework during the downtime when my stamina is recharging (which, at a rate of one stamina every five minutes for a 50-point stamina bar… Should be about four and a sixth hours or so for a full charge).

While I’m doing that, enjoy what has so far been one of my favorite fight scenes:

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Selena takes on her friend in Fire Emblem Heroes. Sorry it had to end this way, Laslow

Seriously, the art in this game is great.  Can’t wait to gush about it and annoy everyone in the newsroomwith how endlessly I can talk about small details in things that catch my fancy!

November 30, 2016 Article Published

Two articles in two days?  Fairly unprecedented, but certainly not a bad thing I’d say.

While yesterday’s story was my profile for the Features page, this story is quite a bit more entertaining.  I wrote a review for the Arts & Entertainment page for my buddy Kaleb, our A&E editor.  As a hardcore newsy person, it’s been pretty nice to let my skills expand a bit this semester, I have to say.  Because of my news-oriented background, I’m sure you all must be asking just what I wrote a review on exactly?

Well, Pokémon Sun and Moon of course.  What else would I write on, I’m pretty much an expert in almost all things Pokémon and have nearly 90 hours sunk into the game. Plus, I almost never get to mix my passions for video games and writing on this kind of scale, so how could I pass up the opportunity to vomit all my thoughts on a page for mass consumption?

Also, when I say vomit all my thoughts, I pretty much mean it literally.  I hit a weird place with this article to be honest.  On the one hand, I know so much about the series and about Sun and Moon that it was simple to run through the list of everything I enjoy and everything I find less than stellar about the games.  However, on the other hand I had to make sure not to get too in depth and nerdy with my writing because I was writing for an audience that probably won’t be as much of an expert in the subject as I am.

Hell, I wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of people that see the article have never even touched Pokémon in their lives – as hard to imagine as that can be for someone like me.

Because of how much I had to say, I wound up writing a fairly long piece about the games, one that I expected to get cut down for spacing concerns.  There wound up being far more room available than we expected in the end however, so the 1000+ word review ended up getting printed just about in its entirety.

I tried not to spoil any plot details or get too in depth with some of the deeper mechanics and things I enjoy about the games, but I still think I put together a really solid little review.  I’ve talked about them more than enough on this site here, so I won’t reiterate much, but it’s a nice summary of a lot of things in a (somewhat) succinct package.  So, check if out if you’ve got the chance, because I’m pretty proud of it!

If you want to see the review in its entirety, you can see it here.  You can also check out my whole archive of work for the Daily Titan through the link over on the right!

Oh, and just FYI, there may or may not be some extra multimedia content on the horizon to go along with this.  But I’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

September 12, 2016 Article Published

Alright so the title of this post might be a little misleading.  Technically, I did have another article published for the Arts & Entertainment section of the Daily Titan this issue.  It was just published solely online, not actually in print.

This article was also a movie review rather than a look into an art exhibit on campus.  After getting to see the film early through Alt-101, a College of Communication’s program on campus, I wrote a review for Kevin Smith’s “Yoga Hosers”.

Probably the hardest part about writing this piece for me was that, ironically, I had to inject my own specific opinions into my writing.  As someone who writes hard news almost exclusively, I’m much more used to sticking to the facts and not letting my personal biases slip through.  For a review, however, it was almost entirely my personal feelings about Smith’s movie on display – even if I had to write everything in third person either way.

As a fan of some of Smith’s other flicks, including “Clerks” and “Dogma”, as well as his podcast “Hollywood Babble-On”, I was pretty much predisposed to enjoy this movie walking in.  However, as I try to articulate in the review, the same probably couldn’t be said for everyone.  It’s full of crude humor and referential jokes that only devoted fans will probably pick up on, and  I would argue that most people wouldn’t like the movie even if I did – something that Rotten Tomatoes agrees with me on.

If you want to see the review in its entirety, you can see it here.  You can also check out my whole archive of work for the Daily Titan through the link over on the right!

September 7, 2016 Article Published

Today I published my first Arts & Entertainment article of the Fall 2016 semester – if not one of the first A&E articles I’ve ever written, to be honest.

As someone who focuses almost solely on hard news, it’s rare to find me jumping around to other sections.  I do occasionally when there’s an interesting topic elsewhere, but even then I’m not usually super confident with it just because it isn’t my area of expertise.

For this story about the Tim Brooke’s “Endangered Alphabets” exhibit currently residing in the CSUF Pollak Library, however, the content was close enough to being news that I had a pretty easy time covering it.  On top of that, the exhibit is genuinely nice to visit and makes for an awesome place to sit around and relax.  As someone who enjoys having nice, quiet places to relax in, it’s a pretty great added bonus.

In fact, I’d argue that the hardest part of getting this article done was the deadline night surrounding it.  We had a huge enterprise story on the News page regarding theft on campus that’s well written but took a lot of time to finish, so we were there until at least 1:30 A.M.  Not quite as bad as four in the morning, but it’s still rough.  At least my first class of the day got cancelled due to my professor being at a conference, so there’s always a bright side somewhere.

The exhibit consists of a series of wooden slabs that have characters of languages rarely heard and even on the way to going extinct carved into them.  The carvings are split up into three sections in the gallery that each carry their own meaning.  The first “Writing as Art” section shows a series of single characters that represent a progressive change in the development of language from simple ideas to full phrases.  The second “Article One Collection” has the first article from the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights carved out in various endangered languages.  The third “Sacred Spaces Installation” features four larger wooden panels that have a poem carved out on the wood set up in a circle, creating a space or “grove” that you can enter and experience the languages around you.

“Endangered Alphabets” will be running in the Salz-Pollak Atrium Gallery until September 23 if you happen to be in the area and want to check out the beautiful carvings before the exhibit is cycled out.

If you want to see the story in its entirety, you can see it here.  You can also check out my whole archive of work for the Daily Titan through the link over on the right!