Book Review – Lady of the Lake (fan translation)

Lady of the LakeFirst and foremost, a huge thanks to the awesome Witcher community for their work on this novel translation. Holyshit, this book is awesome, and the fact that it’s not the official English version shouldn’t persuade anyone from reading the last book in the Witcher saga. It did had a few minor spelling and grammar mistakes, however after all, even the official English translations had their own spelling and grammar mistakes as well! This is the last book in the Witcher saga, the longest, and possibly tied with Time of Contempt as my favorite book in all of the Witcher series.

 

NO SPOILERS:
Unlike in the previous books, certain settings take place in the future after all the events in the saga.
Having already played the Witcher games, and read through a good chunk of the Witcher wiki, I already knew how certain major events unfolded. In contrast to what many people in the Witcher subreddit reactions, the ending didn’t bother me quite much. Sure, I definitely got a teary eye, and was in a “what the fuck did just happened?” moment. The ending sure made the reader aware that the main protagonist in the Witcher saga is Ciri.

 

The alternate ending to the Witcher saga is essentially The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
Theirs no doubt the Witcher 3: Wild Hunt’s main story is oscar worthy amazing. Reading the entire saga, and playing the video games, I can’t stop praising the work of Andrzej Sapkowski for creating an amazing universe and for CD Projekt Red for visualizing and extending this epic fantasy series. If theirs anything I would’ve like to seen or changed in the Witcher 3: Wild Hunt was more content relating Yennefer and Ciri mother daughter relationship. Since the game mainly focused on the relationship between Geralt and Ciri, even up to the point were Ciri herself physically resembles Geralt. Yet, in the novels, the bond between Yennefer and Ciri appeared to be stronger than Geralt’s. Thus said, a fan made video that beautifully summarizes the bond between the three main characters in the entire Witcher saga; Ciri, Geralt, and Yennefer.
(SPOILERS if you haven’t played the game, no spoilers if you haven’t read the saga)

Book Review – The Tower of the Swallow

The Tower of the SwallowThe title of this book sparked a debate on the Witcher subreddit, the US translation has it as “The Tower of Swallows” while the UK has it as “The Tower of the Swallow”. The majority agreeing with the latter, upon finishing reading the book I also agree the correct title should’ve been The Tower of the Swallow. So in addition with the horrible book covers, and publishing Blood of Elves before Sword of Destiny, yet another fuck up from Orbit Books publishing.

NO SPOILERS:
The fourth book in The Witcher saga, The Tower of the Swallow has more emphasis on Ciri. The majority of this book is narrative from Ciri’s point of view. In this book you finally learn how she got the scar in her face, as well as her tattoo in her inner thigh. By now you already know Ciri is actually the main protagonist in the saga (no this is not a spoiler), because in addition to the majority of this book being narrative from Ciri’s point of view, the book also focused more on the political situation, and then finally Geralt’s quest of rescuing Ciri comes into the equation. Anyone expected to read of Geralt killing monsters on this book will be slightly disappointed.

More characters are introduced in this book. Avallac’h finally appears, among others both evil and good. So far, in my opinion this book is the most darkest and violent one in The Witcher series. Sapkowski doesn’t sugar coat or hides the violence characters endure in this book.

FuboTV Review

fubo-tvI’ve been using FuboTV’s streaming service for a couple of weeks, and I absolutely love it. Finally a paid live football streaming service that I’ve been wishing for the longest time. I’m really impressed of the service from this fairly unknown company. The price for FuboTV is perfect. The basic package of $9.99 will give access to most games (important ones) from La Liga, Ligue 1, Serie A, Liga Portugal, Liga MX, MLS, and Brasileirao. I opted to also get an additional Spanish Add-On which gives access to additional channels from Mexico and South America. A mere total of $12.99 gives me access to almost all football I need. As as said during my Kodi Review, having streaming access to live and on-demand video is the future of television entertainment media. With FuboTV, having access channels like BeinSport and GolTV is absolutely amazing.

My Setup
Since Kodi is my primary media server, I was fairly disappointed to see their isn’t an official video add-on for FuboTV. So instead, I opted to buy a Chromecast. So via my Android phone, the Chromecast device feeds the signal to my TV. It simply cannot get any more easier.

The quality of the streams is fairly good. Certainly not perfect, their been some occasions where the stream either dropped completely (had to manually reconnect) or it only had audio but not video. Thus said, it’s multi-bitrate streaming is fairly good, the streams will switch to higher or lower bitrates without any buffering whatsoever. The only thing bad about FuboTV is that they don’t accept PayPal. Aside from Amazon, I avoid buying things online from vendors that don’t offer PayPal. In fact, this was reason why I didn’t jumped onto their streaming service right away. Also, the streaming service is only for people in the U.S., though anyone around the world can easily by-pass this restriction via a VPN, but I digress.

Now, the only thing I can hope for is to FuboTV to have the streaming rights for Fox Sports/Deportes and NBC Sports. With these additional networks we’ll have access to the Copa Libertatores, Champions League, Bundesliga, and the EPL.

My problem with Social Justice Warriors

Free speech is under assault and SJWs are leading the way. It’s not an oppressive government (at least here in the U.S.A.), but rather a fairly large vocal population that has the false belief that certain people have it easy in life simply because of the color of their skin or because of their gender. I have no problem with people believing these false assertions. The problem with SJWs is that if you disagree with them, their reaction will be try to censor you. The notion of freedom of speech is their’s and no others, and the only excuse to combat their bogus believes is labeling you as a racist. The perpetually offended is such a frightening force. We have to look beyond the simple stupid things as “safe spaces” to the much more serious ones like first world feminists on Twitter censoring you simply because you disagree with them, and Facebook censoring former ex-Muslims because current Muslims deemed it offensive.

Having a subset of society dictate our freedom is almost as frightening as if a government doing so. It’s no secret that I absolutely love The Witcher universe. Yet, even tough the series is based on Slavic mythology and Polish history, SJWs criticized the game because it didn’t had any minorities in it. On a similar fashion, how the Academy awards are under constant scrutiny for not having enough minorities nominated for such thing. All of this for political correctness.

Not All Hope Is Lost

I can’t help but see SJWs as being absolute idiots. Being born in this country or living here, SJWs don’t realize in fact how privilege they really are. While in other places I can’t help but admire those people with no such freedom and risk their life by speaking of things such as criticizing their government, femicides in Latin America, equal rights for women in Muslim countries, to name a few.

The Irony

Universities should be a place where people share ideas, knowledge, and obviously apply critical thinking to decide on conclusions your own. Yet if for example a speaker were to give a speech in a college campus and SJWs don’t agree with such speaker, chances are they’ll try do do just about anything to censor him or her.

Ron Paul

I utterly despise Donald Trump, and see him a big threat to our civil liberties. Yet, there have been multiple political rallies where citizens were forced to abandon them, and in some occasions prevent from attending them altogether. Ironically, the people taking away your freedom of speech are the ones advocating for “free college tuition” and “free healthcare”. So it’s no shock to see Trump’s popularity skyrocket at frightening levels as a result of people having enough of SWJs.

Cultural Libertarian

Canadian libertarian commentator Lauren Southern does a good job describing how SWJs are even changing libertarianism itself.

Book Review – Baptism of Fire

Baptism of Fire

The third book in the Witcher saga, and as of the time of this writing the last official English translated novel published. Baptism of Fire, continues Geralt’s journey to rescue Ciri. This book is mostly described by Geralt’s point of view, and on occasions from Ciri, and on lesser from Yennefer’s.

NO SPOILERS: In The Witcher III: Wild Hunt, Geralt’s journey to find Ciri mainly consists of him doing most of the work and the occasional help of his friends from leads he was able to learn or find, however in the Witcher saga, Geralt is allied with certain characters that most were never part of any of the Witcher games. All together helping Geralt find and rescue Ciri. These additional characters helping Geralt made this book really fascinating to read, since they all had mystery and secrets.

Aside from Geralt, the Northern Kingdoms, and the Nilfgaardian Empire. Their is a new entity formed that wants Ciri because of her special powers. That entity emphasizing on the importance of magic.

Book Review – The Time of Contempt

Time of Contempt The second novel of the epic Witcher saga, this book if fucking awesome. Browsing through the Witcher subreddit and forums (avoiding spoilers obviously), a lot of people tend to rate The Time of Comtempt as their least favorite book. In part, I can see why many people would have a hard time liking this book.  The Time of Comtempt covers a really important event which sparks the second war between Northern Kingdoms vs Empire of Nilfgaard. The politics in the Witcher universe is absolutely amazing. There’s a lot to take in while reading this book, and it maybe a bit overwhelming a times. Like every war, they’re alliances and betrayals among both sides.

Many people compare The Witcher to the Game of Thrones, and the reason people (Witcher subreddit and forums) prefer The Witcher; is because how the political intrigue and plots in the Witcher universe are apparently much more astonishing than in the Game of Thrones.

NO SPOILERS:
On this book, you’ll continue to learn more about the vital role Ciri has in the war. Character development is also a huge part of this book, you’ll start learning more about certain characters that were described or mentioned on previous books, but not necessarily fully explained. Even I was surprised to learned new things about Ciri’s mythical Elder Blood ancestry and other aspects about her. By the time this book ends, she’s fleeing for her life, and beautifully gateways onto the next book in the Witcher saga, Baptism of Fire.

Book Review – Blood of Elves

Blood of Elves This book is the start of epic Witcher Saga. The saga were the witcher Geralt of Rivia was destined to be the guardian of Ciri; the most important living thing in the world, whose prophecy said will change world. Having only played The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. I started reading the Witcher saga about 2 hours into the original Witcher PC game and I still haven’t not played the Witcher 2. So at this point I can’t really comment how all the games differentiate between the actual saga. Also, at this point having a strong knowleged of the the complex Witcher universe, I’m avoiding reading the Witcher Wiki in order to avoid any spoilers.

NO SPOILERS: Blood of Elves continues were Sword of Destiny finished. Ciri is still a child, and Geralt has taken her to Kaer Morhen. The game flawlessly portraits Vesimer exactly how he’s describes in this book. As a matter of fact, the game perfectly illustrated Ciri’s training in Kaer Morhen https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QN8gANz8Te4 exactly how Andrzej Sapkowski wrote in the book, which totally brought a smile to my face while reading it.

Triss Marigold finally appears in the saga, and it was really cool reading how she first met Ciri. Yennefer also first meets Ciri in this book. Quite to their respective personalities of both Triss and Yennerfer, they both treat Ciri in their own unique way.

I really wasn’t aware how Ciri unknowingly is a key figure in the Nilfgaard Empire vs Nothern Kingdoms conflict. Additional, another important thing I learned by reading Blood of Elves and it really wasn’t mentioned on The Witcher 3 (as far as can remember) is the conflict between humans and elves. This is a real important thing in The Witcher saga, hence the title of the book.

This is such a good book, there were multiple times were a scene or circumstance stopped to go a different part of the story. Making me wish it continue in order to know what happened next.

Although the book doesn’t explicitly mentioned why, but Ciri already being sought after by evil entities.

Finally, key characters such as Philippa Eilhart, Dijkstra, and Shani also first appear on this book.

Happy 20th Anniversary to Pokémon

pokemon

The Pokémon game was first release 20 years ago, and it’s hard to believe it is been around 17 years that I first played Pokémon Red and Blue on my Game Boy pocket, and later on my Game Boy Color. Hell, Pokémon was the sole reason why I owned a Nintendo Game Boy on the first place. Such an amazing series and great game, I will forever cherish the wonderful memories I experienced playing this game as Pokémon played a major role of my preadolescence life.

As a side note, right after I completed the main quest in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and was already suffering post-game depression. I thought to myself when was the last I’ve had such a feeling. Then I quickly remembered the last I felt the same way was when I first completed the Pokémon game. Perhaps the role-playing aspect of both The Witcher and Pokémon amazing universe’s, nevertheless.

Sadly, now days I have absolutely no clue of the current modern Pokémon universe, let alone any of the non 150 original Pokémon monsters.