Tomb Raider Definitive Edition Review

After the long needed and successful reboot to the Tomb Raider series, Tomb Raider (2013 A Survivor is Born) has been completely remodeled, and re-rendered for the Xbox One and Playstation 4. Now called Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition, will include a remodeled Lara Croft, allowing for her to be more expressive, and more realistic,  TressFX will be added to Lara’s hair to make move realistically, improved graphics, realistic physics, subsurface scattering for Lara’s skin, allowing players to see Lara sweat, and see blood dry over time, added effects, and will be in 1080p for both consoles.

But is it worth it?

Most gamers are saying it’s just “the PC ported with better graphics”. But Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition is perfect for hardcore Tomb Raider fans, gamers that didn’t play the Xbox 360 port, or people who obsess over graphics in a game. Crystal Dynamics, the makers of the game, have stated that Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition will show off what the next gen of gaming can do.

So if you haven’t gotten around to playing Tomb Raider on the Xbox, then do yourself a favor and get Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition.

Review by Kristin Esparza


Enhanced by Zemanta

Soul mate or no mate…a look into culture and relationships

Red String Volume 1

Red String Volume 1 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Do you believe in fate?


It’s a simple enough question, mostly the answers are either yes or no. This question is mostly never brought up in normal conversation and it usually never crosses peoples minds. When asked this question, people either answer straight away or they think about it, having never considered the question before.


The definition of fate is the development of events beyond a person’s control, regarded as determined by a supernatural power.  Most people normally don’t like to believe their future is all planned out for them regardless of what they do, while others believe that everything happens for a reason.


Another form of fate can be in the term “soul-mate”.  A soul-mate is a predetermined person who you are destined to be with romantically. Cultures have many takes on the soul-mate principle with different views.


The red string of fate, also referred to as the red thread of destiny, red thread of fate, and other variants, is an East Asian belief originating from Chinese legend and is also used in Japanese legend. According to this myth, the gods tie a red cord around the ankles of those that are to meet one another in a certain situation or help each other in a certain way. Often, in Japanese culture, it is thought to be tied around the little finger. According to Chinese legend, the deity in charge of “the red thread” is believed to be Yuè Xiv Lǎo (月下老, often abbreviated to “Yuèlǎo” [月老]), the old lunar matchmaker god who is also in charge of marriages.


The two people connected by the red thread are destined lovers, regardless of time, place, or circumstances. This magical cord may stretch or tangle, but never break. This myth is similar to the Western concept of soul-mates or a destined flame.


The Legend:


The story featuring the red string of fate involves a young boy. Walking home one night, a young boy sees an old man standing beneath the moonlight (Yuè Xià Lǎo). The man explains to the boy that he is attached to his destined wife by a red thread. Yuè Xià Lǎo shows the boy the young girl who is destined to be his wife. Being young and having no interest in having a wife, the young boy picks up a rock and throws it at the girl, running away. Many years later, when the boy has grown into a young man, his parents arrange a wedding for him. On the night of his wedding, his wife waits for him in their bedroom, with the traditional veil covering her face. Raising it, the man is delighted to find that his wife is one of the great beauties of his village.


However, she wears an adornment on her eyebrow. He asks her why she wears it and she responds that when she was a young girl, a boy threw a rock at her that struck her, leaving a scar on her eyebrow. She self-consciously wears the adornment to cover it up. The woman is, in fact, the same young girl connected to the man by the red thread shown to him by Yuè Xià Lǎo back in his childhood, showing that they were connected by the red string of fate.


In his dialogue The Symposium, Plato has Aristophanes present a story about soul mates. Aristophanes states that humans originally had four arms, four legs, and a single head made of two faces. He continues that there were three genders: man, woman and the “Androgynous”. Each with two sets of genitalia with the Androgynous having both male and female genitalia. The men were children of the sun, the women were children of the earth and the Androgynous were children of the moon, which was born of the sun and earth. It is said that humans had great strength at the time and threatened to conquer the gods.


The gods were then faced with the prospect of destroying the humans with lightning as they had done with the Titans but then they would lose the tributes given to the gods by humans. Zeus developed a creative solution by splitting humans in half as punishment for humanity’s pride and doubling the number of humans who would give tribute to the gods. These split humans were in utter misery to the point where they would not eat and would perish so Apollo had sewn them up and reconstituted their bodies with the navel being the only remnant harkening back to their original form.


Each human would then only have one set of genitalia and would forever long for his/her other half; the other half of his/her soul. It is said that when the two find each other, there is an unspoken understanding of one another, that they feel unified and would know no greater joy than that.


Another variation of soul-mates is the twin flame. A Twin Flame (also Twin Soul) is a spiritual (New Age) concept describing a special soul connection between two halves of the same soul. The Twin Flames are thought to be a template for a new type of relationship between lovers. The fundamental thought behind this concept is that the dawning new era in human spiritual evolution will be a time when relationships foster enhanced spiritual growth between lovers, whereas in previous times and still early in the 21st century couples stay together for purposes of physical survival and economical safety more than anything else.


According to the mythology of Twin Flames, in the beginning of time we were created as a perfect soul, that was split into two soul halves – one half female, the other half male – that would then be cast upon Earth to be forever looking for one-another. They would reincarnate over lifetimes with this longing for each other, and once they finally meet, they would reunite and be in love and then leave this physical plane as one whole individual soul.


There are plenty of modernized theories of Twin Flames, many of which presenting the view that there is a twin flame for everyone (thus confusing catalytic relationships and soul mates to twin flames) and that the halves of twin flames are not necessarily a male and female, but can also be of the same gender. Also, some theorists accept that this is not a relationship that can be experienced once in all life cycles only, but repeats over several. However, most take it as a sign of spiritual enlightenment and a sign of evolution. Despite these differing views Twin Flame concept is still very much tied to monogamous ideals, and the thought that only graduate souls have twin flames on Earth as their purpose is to do spiritual work and energy work to help the Planet.


However, that does not mean a Twin Flame relationship would be something to aspire for, as soul mates, are much more important due to the mere higher number of soul mates doing spiritual work, and a soul mate relationship is often more harmonious; Twin flames go through a lot of cleansing and purging of the chakras and energetical bodies, and with true Twin Flames the connection is so intense that it causes fear and many twin flames initially run from the experience.


Whatever culture it is, it is apparent that there are many different variations of soul-mates but it all ties back to the fact that things happen for a reason. We may not like the idea of our futures all planned out for us but it’s fate, it can’t be escaped from; no matter how hard you try.


by Vanna Watson




Enhanced by Zemanta

How To Train Your Dragon 2 Trailer Review

How to Train Your Dragon (video game)

How to Train Your Dragon (video game) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


After the surprising success of DreamWorks Animation “How To Train Your Dragon”, Co-Director Dean DeBlois announced that How To Train Your Dragon will have 3 parts, turning the popular movie into a trilogy. How To Train Your Dragon 2 will premier June 13, 2014.


Movie trailers are meant to capture the viewers attention, and this trailer does just that. In the beginning of the trailer, Hiccup, voiced by Jay Baruchel, starts off by saying the infamous line “This is Berk”, something that makes How To Train Your Dragon fans squeal with excitement. The trailer showcases the main cast has grown up, and have partaken in “dragon races” and dragon competitions. It shows that life on Berk is, as implied by Hiccup, amazing.


But all isn’t as “amazing” as Hiccup believed it had been. Not only is he being pressured by his father to “grow up”, “stop flying” and “protect their people”


, but Hiccup finds that with exploration, comes consequences. A question many fans had about Hiccup’s mother is finally answered. The trailer shows that Hiccup’s mother had been living with dragons for many years, and she tells Hiccup “something is coming”. The trailer then shows a battle zone.  As far as we know, dragons are being used in a war.


With a new villain, new characters, new dragons and new a new plot, this trailer captured peoples attentions. The animation was different from the first, it’s much more fluid and loose, with beautiful rendering, and lighting, and overall, stunning to look at. With over 8 million views, it’s obvious that this will be a great summer film.


Watch the trailer here:


Trailer Review by Kristin Esparza



Enhanced by Zemanta