Big Brain Acemdemy For Nintendo DS Available On Wii U Virtual Console


Another DS Title has been added to the Wii U eShop, Big Brain Acedemy. If you are looking for something to test your knowledge and keep your brain in prime shape then feel free to download this game today for the Wii U Virtual Console, I have and shall be giving it a go a little bit later. For those that haven’t played it before, Big Brain Academy DS has 3 modes, Practice, Test & Versus. The former are single player and help you learn the minigames that you can encounter in the Test. Test gives you a set number of minigames to test you and calculate your brain weight. The latter, Versus, unfortunately is not available to play On The Wii U as the original system requires a wireless connection to others Nintendo DS’s and this function is not available on on the Virtual Console. Well I am off to play it now so I shall leave you guys to make up your own decisions.

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The Warp Zone “Lives Run Out!” A One Republic Parody


Sometimes it takes time to notice things on the Internet, other times you know about something before anyone has had the chance to post it. Well this is the former in this aspect as my brother found this Music Video created by Youtubers The Warp Zone @warpzonetweets as a parody of Super Mario and “Love Runs Out” by One Republic. I am not a generic fan of One Republic but I did thoroughly enjoy this music video. The Warp Zone have been going for a while now and their content and Videos are getting better and better each time. Their love of gaming mixed with their awesome vocals and professionalism makes their Youtube channel a GO TO for fans of every genre and with over a million subscribers and millions of views per video that range for nintendo themed parodies to full on music videos & acapella,  this amazing gang of crazy gamers will surely be here for some time yet. Keep up the good work guys!

Be sure to subscribe to their Youtube channel:- The Warp Zone

Race For Rupees: A Zelda Fan-Made Film


Racing for Rupees _SFM_ - HD 720p _File2HD.com__0002Youtuber Callegos-Y known for his animated shorts has put his skills to work again and created this gem. Depicting Link, The Hero Of Time as he struggles to buy a shield and has to resort to dastardly methods to procure enough rupees by destroying pots and robbing graves . Set in the Hyrule Market Town from The Ocarina Of Time  with a lot of cameos from other series; from the Bazaar guy (OoT) to Ilia (TP) and even an outstretched hand which undoubtedly belongs to midna (TP). It is wonderfully done and the video itself is made via Source Film Maker, the characters are all model templates that can be downloaded via the program. I do find his ingenuity to put this whole video together amazing and really glad he did because this video great fun to watch.

Top 10 Wii U Games Chart Chosen By UK Fans


A couple of weeks ago, Nintendo reached out to UK fans add created a poll for fans to choose their favourite Wii U game via Facebook and Twitter. Thousands of fans flocked to Twitter to give their vote for a chance to win some eShop credit to which fans can spend to buy even more games to extend their Wii U Library (Clever Nintendo). The list of games was vast, however Nintendo managed to tally it down to a Top 10 and the list can be found below or alternatively on the Official Website. I for one am quite pleased with the result as my Top 5 games which I also own just so happen to be the Top 5 of the fan favourites too. Talk about great minds think alike!

From No. 10 To No.6 It Goes…

10. Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker

9. The Wonderful 101

8. Splatoon

7. Pikmin 3

6. Bayonetta 2

Splatoon game

…And The Top 5 Are…

5. Super Mario 3D World

4. The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD

3. Hyrule Warriors

2. Super Smash Bros. For Wii U

1. Mario Kart 8 

Are You Happy With This Top 10? Do You Think That Maybe It Should Have Been Arranged Differently? Or Maybe Your Favourite Didn’t Make The Top 10. Let Us Know In The Comments Below!

Stay Up To Date On Mario Maker With Their New Website


The new website dedicated to keep us updated on Nintendo’s Mario Maker is now online ready for your viewing, it includes brief videos of all the Mario games in the Super Mario Series to date and also the special promotion video seen in the April 1st Nintendo Direct. However the page itself is still pretty vague about what the game entails and includes a link direct to the Official Nintendo website with the brief description of the game which, makes you think ‘why is it not included on the new website itself?’ I myself am very interested in the release of this game when it finally comes out as I have always love the Super Mario Games and the opportunity to design your own from four different designs ranging from the Nes to Wii U, is going to be intense.You can get to the website can by clicking on the link below;

http://supermario.nintendo.com/#/

Check Out Our Splatoon Feature Article


Miketendo 64Here At Miketendo64.com we have finally came to a point where we can start developing our Reviews and Feature Articles for Nintendo Games. To kick us off is our new feature writer Jack Longman with his article on Splatoon  for the Wii U and it’s “Battle Dojo” Mode. If you are interested in Splatoon and haven’t picked it up yet, definitely make sure you definitely give this a read first!

https://miketendo64.com/wii-u-feature-articles/twice-the-fun-with-splatoon-battle-dojo/

Miketendo64 Exclusive! An Interview With… Jared Potter, Director Of “Creatures Of Hyrule”


#Zelda Month

Today has been an extremely good day for me. I woke up and looked at my facebook to find out the Laura Kerger AKA ArtistGamerGal has responded to my interview questions. I have been paid by my boss for the last month, I have played Splatoon for the first time and to top it off, Jared Potter, the director and VFX artist for the Zelda Inspired Webseries “Creatures Of Hyrule” and also “Majora’s Mask Live Action; The Skull Kid” has also reached out, allowing to be interviewed with Yours Truly, giving me this fantastic opportunity to talk with him about his web series, his love for Nintendo and what lies in store for the third episode of “Creatures Of Hyrule”

Mike – Well Jared, it is an honour to talk with you. Your web series is great fun to watch and brilliantly done and has quite a few fans including myself. What inspired you to create a web series based on the Legend Of Zelda?

Jared – I have been a huge fan of the Legend of Zelda series for the majority of my life. It’s one of the major influences I credit to my desire to become a filmmaker, a storyteller. So, when the opportunity came (from Machinima) to make a Zelda film, I jumped at the opportunity. After that, and after meeting Caleb, I knew I just couldn’t stop there. I had so many ideas of things that could be brought to life in a live-action web series.

Mike – You are obviously a big fan of The Legend Of Zelda, as must be your team, When did you first realize you were a Zelda Fan?

Jared – Christmas morning, 1998, when my parents bought my brother and I a Nintendo 64 packaged with Ocarina of Time. We stayed up so late that night playing the game, and I can still remember how far we got. It sticks out in my mind so vividly because it was unlike anything else I had ever experienced with a video game. It completely pulled me in, and I’ve been a fan of the series ever since.

Mike – Are you a Home Console gamer or Handheld?

Jared – As of recently I can proudly say I am both! I was one of the lucky few able to get my hands on the Majora’s Mask collector’s edition 3DS a few months back. So, I am pretty new to the handheld console world, but I am loving it so far. Home consoles have always been a staple, however, since getting that first N64 all those years ago.

Mike – There must be a few complications merging live action with special effects, yet you and your team do it so well, how do you overcome these set-backs with SFX?

Jared – There is almost always an obstacle to be overcome, when looking at SFX and VFX, which many times is something you’ve never had to deal with before. No two VFX shots are made alike, and I think that’s a huge part of what I love so much about it. It causes you to have to think very analytically about how you will accomplish a certain effect. The key is knowing what you want, but being willing to be flexible and make changes if necessary, because there is no problem that doesn’t have a solution.

Mike – Your Web Series so far has been very popular and is very entertaining to watch, You and your team do an amazing job putting these episodes together, how did you come across these brilliant experts in their fields?

Jared – My team (I say my team, but in reality it’s all my very close friends and family) are just a bunch of people who really enjoy the film-making process, and who give so graciously of their time. We all love making these films when we get the chance, but most of the people I work with are volunteers who usually have to take time off their day jobs to come and help me. Being the writer/director/producer/editor/VFX artist/sound designer/etc can be very tiring for me, and more than anything my “team” could not be more supportive.

Mike – Your Actor Caleb does a fantastic job Portraying Link in the series, how did you get to meet this talented young actor?

Jared – Caleb, and his mom Allison, were introduced to me by a friend of a friend who was helping me with the casting for Skull Kid. She knew I was looking for a young boy to play Link, but I had originally planned to only show him from behind, riding the horse through the forest. His appearance in Skull Kid was only meant to be a tease since I was pretty confident we would never find anyone who looked remotely like Link. Before meeting Caleb I was convinced that no actor could portray Link properly, but I was quickly proven wrong when I saw him in costume the day we shot his scene.

Mike – You have so far published two episodes in your web series which have been quite well received by the fans and highly appraised by other members of the public. Will you be producing a third episode in the near future and do you have an idea of what *creature you will feature?* 

Jared – I have some ideas as to what I would like to do next, but have no plans as to when/if we could shoot them. Coordinating these productions is a huge effort, even though the budget was next to nothing for the first two episodes. I am essentially making these episodes in my spare time, which is becoming more and more limited lately (I am a full time VFX artist). But who knows! I would love to keep it going, and the next idea I have is for a temple boss. 😉

Mike – Your last two episodes have been set in the forest which is logical to begin this kind of series as Link is ‘A Child Of The Forest’ Do you have any other locations lined up for future projects, like a cave or dungeon setting?

Jared – That’s one of the things that makes the next episode so difficult. We all live in Washington state, which has some of the most beautiful forest environments in the US, but finding something even closely resembling a dungeon is very difficult. I would love to do something in a cave, or in a castle, for example, but those locations are very few and far between here. But the search will continue, and often times when the right location presents itself, that’s when we get inspired to make another one.

Mike – I particularly like your use of the ‘Zelda’ sound effects which viewers will recognize from the Games, are they the original sound effects or have they been revamped for this series?

Jared – Some are original sounds and some are new, improved sounds. I really wanted to connect the films and the games through the sound design especially, and some of the sounds are super iconic, as most Zelda fans know. Most of them are mixed with other sounds, however, to give them more of a realistic grounding, but still carry that familiarity.

e51f5504bf55de0c24d9bc6d2afd2759.pngMike – Your costume department do a superb job with the costumes, are the costumes hand-tailored or are they available to buy ‘as seen’ in the series at retailers?

Jared – I’d say about 80% of the costumes are completely hand made. Link’s costume was purchased online (mainly due to time constraints) and then altered to look a little more authentic. The Happy Mask salesman was almost completely hand made, with a jacket that was painstakingly sewn by hand, and a backpack covered in hand made replicas of the masks he carries. The Skull Kid costume was also completely built by my team, and myself from the ground up.

Mike – One of your first projects was “Majora’s Mask Live Action: The Skull Kid” which also starred Caleb at the end of the short film. Did you know back then that you wanted to do a Live Action Series?

Jared – No, back then I didn’t think I would be making any more films in the Zelda universe. But, like I touched on earlier, after meeting Caleb and seeing how well he worked on camera as Link I knew we had to do a little more while we could. Caleb is growing up quickly!

Mike – On the Subject of”Majora’s Mask Live Action: The Skull Kid”  Would you ever consider doing the final confrontation between Link and The Skull Kid or even Majora?

Jared – That’s something I would love to do! I’ve thought about it, as well as doing the final confrontation between Link and Ganondorf in Ocarina of Time. It would be a huge production, and one I would want to make sure was done the right way, but I think it’s something the fans would really enjoy. Especially if it involved the Fierce Deity Link.

Mike – You And Your team do extraordinary work on these episodes and on your other projects. Though you guys do these projects in your free time. would you consider doing it as a professional career?

Jared – I am currently a full time VFX artist working on a television show, and occasionally working on short films and commercials, things like that. So I would say that I am somewhat doing that already, although my ultimate passion would be directing full time. I also know that many of my other friends who work on the short films with me would love to be working in the film/television industry someday. So, it’s a dream that many of us are working towards, and I think each short film brings us closer and closer to that goal.

Mike – Jared it has been a pleasure to talk with you and an honour for me. Your work is amazing and is a definite Must Watch for all Zelda fans and for those that still haven’t seen your work, I hope this interview will encourage them to do so. 

If You want to know more about Jared Potter and his work or would like to keep up to date on his future projects you can check out his website, Like his page on Facebook and/or Subscribe to his channel on Youtube, 

 

– Jared Potter –

Owner / VFX Artist – (part one) media

Website:-  www.partonemedia.com

Facebook:- https://www.facebook.com/skullkidfilm?fref=ts

Youtube:- https://www.youtube.com/user/JaredWPotter

(360) 239 0769

An Interview With… Laura Kerger AKA “ArtistGamerGal”


AGGThrough my exploits with the internet and its ever growing connection with one another and the increasing popularity of Social Media like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest etc. With the powers of the internet, Blogging is no longer a fad but a potential career choice and opens many doors to make relationships and connections to many people around the world.  In my search to talk to the Fans about their Nintendo inspired projects, including videos, videogames and other products of their creation, I have came up trumps today when I had the privilege to talk to Laura Kerger about her AGG Toons Series and her new original series Chroma Black. 

Mike – Thank you for joining me for this Interview Laura. It is a pleasure to talk to you and to be able talk about your fantastic animated series of Nintendo Parodies.

Laura Thanks for reaching out Mike!

Mike – So Laura, What inspired you to create the web series of Nintendo parodies?

Laura  I wouldn’t say it was an inspiration as much as it was a chain of events. The very first video game parody I ever worked on was “Zelda – Link and the Pig” back in 2009. It was based on a short comic I wrote in the back of a friend’s yearbook in junior high about The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. I had just finished my first year of Art College in my animation program and was looking for a small project to practice with over the summer.

I really wanted to collaborate with others at the time too, so I reached out to several other emerging animators to try and do a team project. I ended up working with a small team of voice actors and other animators to do a video game parody collaboration video on YouTube, where everyone was assigned a super short segment of animation. The head of the team had seen a work in progress video of Link and the Pig and decided to assign me the short Zelda segment “Life with Navi”. Since the segment was so short, I was able to finish it before Link and the Pig and also decided to release it on my own YouTube channel.

The next summer in 2010, I finally finished up Link and the Pig and released it both on YouTube and Newgrounds (a popular website for animators) and it got a lot more attention than any other video I had submitted in the past four years to either site. This lead me to getting invitations from several other big collaborations (such as another Zelda segment in Nin10Doh 64) as well as sponsorship from Machinima, who at the time was looking to recruit animators to create video game parodies for their various channels on YouTube.

 I hadn’t really planned on making any more video game parodies, but once Machinima was offering to sponsor a series of them I jumped on board. I had only done small commissions with my art and animation before, so I thought this was a great opportunity to get a lot of paid experience in animation. So it really was working with Machinima that lead me to make so many video game parodies.

Mike – Are you the sole animator or do you have a team working with you?

Laura – I am the only one who works on the animation aspect of my videos; however I’ve worked with voice actors online for many years now as well as writers for script ideas. I didn’t get any help with the art side of things until “Mario’s Reward” in 2011. Then I started working with a close friend on my animations. He would color all the character art of the animation and has played that role ever since. I have also worked with digital composers for custom music in my animations as well. Recently, I have expanded my team even further and now have a background artist I’m working with for future animations. So it’s always growing!

 
Mike – Are you a fan of Nintendo or of Gaming in general? 

Laura – A fan of Nintendo is an understatement! I own every major Nintendo console and play them all regularly. I still buy old cartridges at mom and pop game shops pretty frequently and spend a lot of my free time playing video games with my friends. I do own a PS1 and PS2 as well as an Xbox 360, but I don’t own nearly as many games for those systems.

Since I live I the greater Seattle area, I’ve been to Nintendo headquarters several times growing up and would always get goosebumps every time I saw the giant Mario statue there. I’ve even been on the news for being the first in line to purchase a Wii at a local video game store! I could go on and on, but basically, I’m a total Nintendo Nerd.

Mike – What was your first Nintendo experience?

Laura – It’s really hard to pin-point my first experience being as Nintendo games were in my household before I was even born, so they’ve just always been there. My mom loved the NES and SNES so she would pick up games for me and my sister to play with her pretty frequently, so it was embedded in me at a very young age. We have several antique books and guides on video games because of my mother as well as the first issue of Nintendo Power. My mom was a regular on the Nintendo help line back when that was still around. My sister out grew it, but I just never did.

Mike – What type of console do you prefer, Home Console or Handheld?

Laura – I’ve had wonderful experiences on both, but it all started on consoles for me, so I have a little more of an emotional attachment to console games in general and my collection on console is much larger than handheld. A lot of the games I played on handheld were really just extensions of titles that were originally on console, so I always thought of the console as the main avenue of my games.

Mike – Where do you get your ideas from to create such rich comical material?

Laura – Most of the ideas came from playing the games and joking about them with my friends. We would be playing a game and find ourselves critically over analyzing them like: “don’t you think it’s weird how Link just walks into peoples’ houses and just breaks pots and no one seems to mind?” for example. Then we would take that idea and turn it into an animation.

Mike – In your AGG Toons series, you have brought to new light to memorable Nintendo characters such as Mario, Yoshi, Link and even the Pikmin. Your work shows no boundaries and that everything is accessible. Could we expect for example, a Metroid skit or a Starfox parody in the near future?

Laura – Most of the video game parodies I made were based on games that I was playing or more often re-playing at the time. I don’t really target specific games for popularity or make videos based on fan demand since it is hard to work on something you are just not inspired to make. I also don’t like to make parodies of games I’m not super familiar with or haven’t really played much. So it’s really all about what I’m feeling like working on or was inspired by at the time. The reason why so many of my videos are related to Zelda is simply because that is my personal favorite video game series.

Mike – Your Latest video is a crossover between Majora’s Mask and Sailor Moon where you have Young Link putting on the Fierce Diety Mask and transforming.  How did you come up with the idea for that and are you pleased with the final result?

Laura – The remake of Majora’s Mask for 3DS came out early this year and I started watching the re-mastered Sailor Moon DVDs around the same time. A friend and I were joking about the similarities of the two over text message after having watched it the night before and we realized how many parallels there were between the two and the idea for the animation was born! I jumped on it pretty quickly since I hadn’t been active on my YouTube channel for some time and was looking for a short but sweet animation to make between major projects. I was also learning some new animation software at the time and thought this could be a great chance to try out some new tools without a lot of production time.

I was pretty happy with the result and felt the quality was a lot better than my older animations in part because of the new tools I was using. Although I always find something to criticize about my work once it’s finished, so I’m always left feeling like I could have done something better… but I guess that’s part of striving to always improve!

Mike – Where did you learn to produce such amazing works of animated art? Is it through programs such as Adobe Photoshop or something even more sophisticated?

Laura – Tons and tons of practice. Many people think learning animation means learning software, but software has very little to do with it. The software is just a tool; much like a pencil- just learning how to use it won’t make you draw pretty pictures. That comes from countless hours of practice. 2D animation (specifically frame by frame animation like I do) is all about learning to draw and learning the principles of animation, which are not contingent on what software you use. In this industry, you have to learn new software constantly, but it is the skills you build when using the tools that really impact your work and carry over.

I’ve been drawing my whole life, but practicing animation since I was 15. Back then, I used things as crude as MS Paint and Movie Maker just to make my moving pictures! I got a lot of training in college courses and have a bachelor’s degree in animation, so that certainly helped me learn much faster than I did on my own, but it really is all about practice, practice, and more practice! A lot of people think that if you can create art it means you have this magical thing called “talent” that you were born with, but that is a myth and frankly an insult! That’s because it implies that the artist did nothing to earn the skills that they most assuredly spent countless hours perfecting to get to that point. Talent is a myth!

As far as specific software I use, I use a multitude of software for different parts of the process. Photoshop does have animation tools and some people do use it for that purpose, but I wouldn’t recommend it for that. I mainly use Photoshop to paint backgrounds for my animations or draw out concepts. For all my animations before this year, I was mainly using Flash for almost everything, but for all the animations I’ve made this year (including Zelda Sailor Majora’s Moon Mask) I used Toon Boom for my character animation. I also use After Effects to apply any effects like glows or sparkles and Premiere for final editing and rendering. Not to mention all the software for audio editing! It is a lot to learn, but once you get started learning some software, learning more software becomes easier.
Mike – Though your work is animated, brilliantly animated I must say, it is not generally for the eyes of children but more designed for a more mature audience, would you agree?

Laura – I certainly wouldn’t recommend my videos to young children, but I try to keep them tame enough that older children can feel comfortable watching them. I’ve always tried to make animations that appeal to me at whatever current age I am, so nearly all my animations were designed for teens or later, especially since they cover games that came out when the current kids weren’t even alive to play them! Most of the games I chose to parody came out in the N64 era, since I am especially partial to that era so I don’t imagine the kids today being as interested in videos about those old games. They are more for people who played those games as kids and can enjoy some adult humor about them now.

I personally think the stigma that animation has received as solely a form of children’s media is an outdated western concept that will likely change in the coming years. In fact, I am hoping to be a part of that change with the cartoons I produce!

Mike – I hear you are working on your own original series, Chroma Black which, the name itself sparks genuine interest. What is the concept of this new series? Is she a superhero or anti-hero? Is it a drama or comedy? Tell me more about it?

Laura – Thanks for your interest in it! I can’t really give a lot of details about it since I am still currently in the process of developing the series and a lot is in flux at this point, but I would say it is a sci-fi fantasy that takes place in a very unique and expansive world that the characters will explore.

I’m really trying to break as much new ground as possible with the concept so it can be challenging to find familiar terminology to describe it, but I can promise that there will be plenty of action and adventure! There will also be several mysteries in the world that the characters have to unlock in order to solve problems and I’m hoping viewers will be along for that ride and be wondering and formulating their own theories.

I have also been working hard to really flesh out several diverse characters that develop and grow throughout the story and their relationships also grow and change. Covering the spectrum from romance to betrayal, I am working hard to make these characters feel real and relatable for the audience. And I would be lying if I didn’t say video games were a huge inspiration with this series!
Mike – When can we expect a pilot or sneak peak of this new series?

Laura – I am hoping to release the first of a series of animated demos in the next few months. These would be short animation tests that I would conduct to figure out exactly how I want the production to look and would in no way be canon to the story- think of them as experiments and steps in the production’s pipeline. I’m hoping they will at least get people interested and talking about it! That is the same reason why I am being so open about visual development over social media- to get people talking about it before it even comes out!

As for an official preview, that will likely happen sometime next year when things are more ironed out in story and visual development. I am undecided on when or how I would release the pilot as I may pitch it privately to sponsors or I may create the show in seasons and thus have to create several episodes before releasing the first one on a production schedule. In short, it’s all still up in the air!

Mike – Will you be uploading the video to any other or do you have any other video hosting sites?

Laura – The current plan is to deliver the series via my ArtistGamerGal YouTube channel, but that may change depending on other factors (like getting picked up by a sponsor).

Laura– Certainly! My work is always a culmination of what I have learned in the past, so I will be applying all the techniques I know to this production to make it the best I can with the small team that I have.


Mike – Do you have a set episode list for your series or is it an open entity that you will keep adding to over time?

Laura – There will be a set episode list and the entire story will have been written from beginning to end before the first episode is released. However, the ending leaves an opening for continuation if we decide to do so.

Mike – Well Laura, thank you so much for participating in this interview and answering all these questions. It has been an absolute pleasure to talk with you today. I am a big fan of your work and have watched all your videos. I wish you well on your endeavors and look forward to seeing your next video.   

Laura – Thank you for having me! 😀

If you would like to know more about Laura Kerger’s works and videos including AGG Toons and Chroma Black please feel free to click on the links below.

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/artistgamergal

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/artistgamergal?fref=ts

Twitter: https://twitter.com/artistgamergal1

Newgrounds: http://artistgamergal.newgrounds.com/

An Interview With… Rocky Rochford & “The Spirit Of Iris”


Author Photo 2015As I mentioned before in a previous post about the Internet being a powerful entity than can bring people closer together from all around the world. It allows us to connect with others all over and share our love for the same things (i.e in our case, our love for Nintendo) Well today I have had the privilege to talk to Rocky Rochford, an aspiring young author, about his fantasy novel The Spirit Of Iris.

Mike – Thank you for joining me for this Interview Rocky. It is fantastic to be able to talk with you. I do enjoy reading your books and I even have a couple them at home including The Spirit Of Iris. You are an aspiring Author of several novels and have a fair few eBooks under your belt. You also known for helping other authors find their feet in the literacy world.

Rocky – Well I like to do what I can to pass on the things I have learned in such a small space of time, be if informing fellow aspiring writers of short story competitions such as one taking place now, from Solstice Shadows, or working with a great group of authors on Facebook, Get Down with the Awethors! On a massive anthology project, where we are all collaborating on a huge, multi-genre fictional work, which we plan to release near the end of this year and is free to download by all.

Spirit of Iris Cover ArtMike – There is a rumour that your novel The Spirit Of Iris which is part of a series is inspired of your love of The Legend Of Zelda. Could you confirm that for us?

Rocky – Well In one word, yes and in more than one: I wanted to be a video game writer working with the Nintendo Zelda team, and I spent quite some time writing Zelda parodies, purely for my overwhelming love for this iconic video game series, but despite my love for Zelda, my desire to create something new, gripped me tightly, I would still love to write Zelda, but creating my own stories, with a world much like Zelda, one where anything can happen, but all ties in, a story forever retelling itself. But as a huge Zelda fan, I have tried to differ it as much as I could, whilst also keeping some of its finest qualities. Qualities such as the story, the characters and that romantic quality that made the gamer full in love with the Zelda world.

Mike – Are you a fan of Nintendo as well or of Gaming in general?

Rocky – Nintendo is my number 1, but I can’t deny saying Capcom made two of my favourite games, Dino Crisis 1 and 2, and then of course there’s Final Fantasy and  the awesome, awesome game of the entire series, Final Fantasy X. I would just spends hours and hours ditching homework, just so I could play game after game of Blitzball, which even to this day, is still the best videogame sport I have ever played, but other than those two great game series, I’m all Nintendo.

Mike – When was your first experience with Nintendo?

Rocky – My first experience would be back in the late 90’s when my older brother got a Nintendo 64 for his birthday and allowed my sister and I to play, we soon got properly acquianted with Ocarina of Time, Banjo Kazooie, Goldeneye (as in the proper Goldeneye) and Smash Brothers! And ever since then, despite playing PS1 and PS2 for a few years, I’ve always been a Nintendo fan and I wouldn’t swap my Wii U for any other console, unless there was one made, where I could play both Zelda and FF.

Mike– Do you prefer Home Console or Handheld consoles?

Rocky – Home console for sure, I’ve played both, but for me, handhelds just lack that special something, which consoles just capture ever so effortlessly. Plus it’s much more fun effing and blinding at the tv because you just got green shelled and lost 1stplace,  when the bugger that shelled you is sitting right next to you, plus if you’re playing Zelda game, Big screen is best!

Mike – Do you take inspiration from any other stories or videogames?

Rocky – Well, Spirit of Iris, Book 1 of my Rise of the Elohim chronicles, also takes inspiration from Lord of the Rings, with regards to scale and such, console for sure, but I have a lot of inspiration from Final Fantasy, which is the grounds to a future series I wish to write, in the scenes of a chaotic futuristic world, filled with magic and more, but I also draw inspiration from stories such as James Bond and Dirk Pitt, a pairing that paved the way for John Lewis, a Navy Captain who is tasked with a simple mission, identify and take out the unknown persons responsible for the immediate downfall of MI6, an outing that will see its release this year, London Calling. I’m also a huge fan of lore and myths and try to incorporate them into my works whenever I can, such as the story of the Jack o’ Lantern, which I used in The Devil You Know, a new twist of right and wrong.

Mike – This is the first book of the series, is the series a trilogy or do you plan to extend on that?

Rocky I always saw the series as a four books, but now, with so many more ideas and character plans, it’s looking to be more like 5-6 books, with the potential to have a spin of series and a patter of shorts here and there, to further explain the world of Oceania.

Mike – Could you tell our readers a little bit about the book to give them an idea of what they can expect from the book?

Rocky – The series is set in a world, at the end of the universe, on a solitary planet, with realms that originated on Earth, including Atlantis, but ever since there has been life, there has been darkness and in a bid to control the entire universe, shadows have given way to cruel, evil forms to walk the 11 realms of Oceania and to lay siege to the entire planet, devastating it all, but the darkness found themselves face to face with a foe that refused to surrender, a gathering of humans, elves and various other creatures, warriors in their own right, that fought bravely to defend their home. The gathering were successful in their mission, but in fear of a return, the Watchers were formed, to forever keep watch, defend and pass on the story of the Shanzi, but after centuries, the Watchers are dying out and so few remain. Worse yet, the Shanzi have returned and are quickly gaining control of the planet, so close to losing altogether, the entire hope of the planet rests on one boy, Zach. From the day he was born, he was raised to do one thing, to be the light that casts back the dark and now that day has come. The Spirit of Iris and the works after are the chronicled adventures of his teachings, his journey and his struggles.

Mike – The artwork looks amazing and has a dark yet somber feel to it. What made you decide to go with that idea for this book and who is the artist that provided this unique illustrations?

Rocky – Well when the main villain of the story are creatures born of complete darkness, it’s only natural the illustrations would reflect that and as the series go on, the illustrations will only get darker, as the climatic war draws closer to its impending end as darkness almost envelops the entire world. As for the artist, oh just some largely talented illustrator I’ve known for a long time, by the name of Ashleigh Longman, An artist who before Iris, had no experience in this type of work before, but has since taken it in her stride and made it her own. We recently just put out a video on Youtube as to just what and how much goes into each illustration, entitled Behind the Eye of Mares – The Artwork. In Spirit of Iris alone, she drew 74 illustrations, 2 for each of the 37 chapters, however to differentiate the books, the ebook version and print edition, each have a unique set of 37 pictures.

Mike – The Spirit Of Iris is a part of “The Elohim” Series, what exactly is Elohim?

Rocky – Elohim, is actually a Jewish word, for Watcher, the shining ones and in the Rise of the Elohim Chronicles, first novel the Spirit of Iris, the Watchers are the guardians of Oceania, against monsters of pure darkness and the Elohim were the skillful Watchers, who were a race in their own right, revered as the Shining Ones. Believed long dead, the series follows the adventures of Zach and the reawakening of the last Elohim in a final bid to win the war of light and dark.

Mike – If our readers are interested in your book, where can they expect to find it for purchase?

Rocky – The Spirit of Iris can be found on both my publisher’s website with this link: http://solsticepublishing.com/the-rise-of-the-elohim/ And of course on Amazon: http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00NP58LEY as well as Create Space, Barnes & Nobel and a few others. Spirit of Iris is also joined by Hour of Darkness, an extract of the continuing story, in the form of a short story, a spoiler for any reader they wants to see how the story continues, whilst waiting on the next edition.

Mike – Are you working on the second book of the series now and when can we expect it to be available for purchase?

Rocky – As of this very moment, the continuation work, The Eye of Mares is already written and currently undergoing edits with my publisher, Solstice Publishing, while the last batch of illustrations are also being finished, so as far as release goes, in all likelihood, The Eye of Mares will be available sometime within the next couple of months, either as a new end of Summer Release, or in the Back to School Autumn and then the third installment will be released in the following year.

Mike – What is your key demographic for this book is it for children, teenagers, adults?

Rocky – The book is classed as a YA, Young adult, but in all reality, anyone over the age of 10 can read this, because there really is something for all aged readers, the allure of adventure, the age old debate of good and evil and the inner turmoil of the soul, overcoming your own inner demons.

Mike – Other than this series you also write short stories and poems for the more mature reader, is that an easy or difficult transference between Novel and short story?

Rocky – Yes and no, there is quite a substantial difference between the two, because with a novel, it can run on for well, as many pages and time you’re willing to put into it, but with a short story, you have a 7,500 word limit and pace is everything. In a novel, you can use quite a bit of word filler, describe the surroundings, clothing and people in all manner you wish, but with short stories, such descriptions can actually take away from the story and slow down the pace drastically, short stories, but at the end of the day, the principle is still the same, beginning, middle and an end that will bring the reader back. That and as far as short stories go, story is literally everything because if you pen it just write, you’re reader will remember over and over and if I had to pick any of my shorts that have come closest to this, I’d pick Don’t Turn Around. My horror/thriller is about a warped killer who is all too happy to share his adventures with the reader, whilst spouting his own brand of philosophical wit. Those I’ve known to have read it, still voice how unnerved they found the entire work, chilling their spines and causing nightmares.

Mike – As regards to you mentioning the anthology a little earlier, let’s go back to that. What are your ambitions with this type of project and how will it benefit you all?

Rocky – With regards to the anthology, as far as my ambitions for the project go, I don’t want it to be a standalone thing, I want it to be an annual event, a work filled with all sorts of adventures for readers of any genre to enjoy. To be a book, a family can take home and each member of that family and an ebook that we’d really like to be available for nothing at all, because the work isn’t about monetary gain, but just a large group of writers doing what they love, sharing our crazy worlds and imaginations, with all of those willing to travel them. Now as for how it will benefit us? I’ll be honest, it will help a few of us get our names out there, I’m not going to deny that, because with so many able to get this work, our own styles and stories run higher risk of being seen, and maybe interesting some readers to read some of our other stuff, but all of us involved, we write purely because we love it. We don’t need to be world renowned authors with millions in the bank, we’re happy just being a bunch of people with more than one story to tell that all are welcome to.

Mike – Rocky it has been an absolute pleasure to talk with you today. I very much enjoy reading your works and I wish you well in your career.

If you would like to know more about Rocky Rochford’s works and his Spirit Of Iris Series or even his short stories and poems please feel free to check out the links below.

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/IamRockyRochford?fref=ts
Twitter: @RockyRochford

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7310280.Rocky_Rochford
Personal Website:  rockyrochford.wordpress.com

K.K. Slider Outfit Coming To Super Smash Bros. 4


It has been Announced on Nintendo Life that KK Slider from the Animal Crossing Series will be coming to Super Smash Bros. 4 in the form of an wearable outfit for the Mii Gunner with his guitar being, you guessed it, a gun. Splatoon outfits have also been announced to appear for the Mii Fighters this summer but there are no current designs as to what they might look like for the game. Prices and date of availability for the KK Slider outfit have not been confirmed yet but if you are interested in purchasing this for your Mii Fighter, than you shouldn’t have to wait too long.

See the original news udate from the Official Website.

Nintendo Micro Direct June 6/1/15


For those of you that didn’t know, Nintendo have just released a new Nintendo Direct Today without prompting. This Micro Direct covers Chibi Robo: Ziplash on the New 3DS as well as a new Chibi Robo Amiibo, The New Dr Mario: Miracle Cure for New 3DS for pre-purchase and will be available June 11. Pokemon Super Mystery Dungeon and Mario & Sonic At The Rio Olympic Games 2016 also get announced and there are some free DLC for Splatoon in the form of new weapons and a brand new map.

See it for yourselves in the link below or find it on Youtube:

The Legend Of King: Prepare For The Feels


I saw this video on Facebook that had been shared by a member of a group I am in and I was not prepared for the overwhelming Feels that came whilst watching it. It is the song KING by Lauren Aquilina which is good by itself but when it is blended with artwork of “The Legend Of Zelda”  it becomes an rollercoaster of feels as waves of nostalgia and emotion come over you while the story and artwork of Ocarina Of Time, Majora’s Mask & Twillight Princess is played in front of your eyes and the progression of Link as The Boy Without A Fairy to the Hero Of Time and ultimately The Hero’s Shade. It wells up the eyes every time I watch it. Call me sad, call me lame but watch it first before commenting, see if it doesn’t affect too 😉 I have attached the video below for you all to enjoy.

Splat!!! Or Be Splatted!!!: Splatoon Probably Should Have Led With This!


I have just checked out the launch trailer for Splatoon, and I have to say that it had made more of an impression on me, than all the other trailers that have come out to build up the hype. It makes me think that maybe Nintendo should have led with this trailer to begin with, it shows all of what you can expect in the game without giving too much away. The “Squid Kid” trailer was ok but I found it more of an Put-Off than a Put-On and I actually lost interest in the game. However, this new trailer has re-piqued my interest and now the game is a possible reconsideration for me. If you haven’t already got the game and are still sitting on the fence like myself. I recommend watching this trailer before making a decision. It may be just the right amount of motive to help influence your decision. If you are considering buying the game or even the Amiibo to go with it. You can use the links provided below to go to your Amazon region. Good Luck and happy hunting!

Splatoon gameSplatoon BundleAmazon.com     Game Only      Game Bundle

Amazon.co.uk   Game Only      Game Bundle

Amazon.fr         Game Only      Game Bundle

Amazon.es       Game Only      Game Bundle

Amazon.it         Game Only      Game Bundle

splatoon 3 packAmazon.de      Game Only       Game Bundle

Amazon To Launch Wave 4 Amiibo Figures In 30 Minute Intervals


There are warnings that stock is in very limited quantities including the Splatoon Figures, Silver Mario and even Pac-Man.

Splatoon-amiibo

Starting today at 2pm Pacific time, Amazon will open one Amiibo-per-customer buy listing every 30 minutes until all nine of this wave have gone live. First up is the Pac-Man Amiibo in the Smash Bros.Amiibo series, that will surely be quite popular, what with the Nintendo-Namco crossover appeal. The rest of the amiibo will follow suit and will include all of Splatoon figurines (which will apparently unlock some “challenge” modes depending on the figurine), The silver-coated Mario will be after, Lucina and Robin from the Fire Emblem series, Mario’s long time nemesis and evil twin Wario, and last but definitely not least is the long awaited favorite of the pokemon series; Charizard.

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