Page 1


What makes you scared?

Horror Cosplay Master Photographer

Mike Rollerson

Page 24

Shares his secrets!

Page 118


HORROR edition!

Forza 6 Full Review

9.4/10! Page 45

Welcome Boo! Ok so it’s not Halloween just yet and to be honest, it’s not a big event here in Australia. But, gamers love horror games and movies no matter where they live, so we took a look at some horror games that might not quite fit the horror genre, we called it Halloween without the Horror. Sure the games have a spooky theme to them, but they might not be causing you to look carefully over your shoulder as you play. Intrigued? Take a look at what Nick, Alex and Paul put together on page 16. There’s some amazing games to spend your money on so our reviewers checked out the timely Zombi along with Forza 6, Super Mario Maker and lots more. We also sat down with Master of Horror Cosplay Photography Mike Rollerson, and asked him to share


Photographer: Mike Rollerson - Cosplayer: Raychul Moore -

INSIDE 16 26 70 116 THE LIVE TEAM Feature: Halloween without the Horror Previews & Reviews

Geek Out Cosplay

some tips on how he creates those ghoulish images, it’s all in our Tips from the Tomb feature along with the amazing cosplayer Raychul Moore who Mike features in his interview. We asked Raychul a few questions but she had to disappear into the night… strange that! But she did promise a full interview with photos in our next issue. There’s tons more to discover in this months’ Live Magazine including our comics review, board games, retro and so much more. Plus all the hottest new stuff at stores. Trick or Treat! The Live Crew

Publisher: “Rabid” Rob Jenkins (GTHQ) Art Director: “Goosebumps” Giselle Capozza (GTHQ) Game Review & Preview Editors: “Naughty” Nick Getley & “Terrible” Tutty (Sticky Trigger) Retro Writer: Paul “Maniac” Monopoli Board Games: Jess “Wicked” Wilson Anime: “Rampaging” Richardson Comics: “Scary” Scott Sowter Sticky Trigger Writers: “Trick or Treat” Tuttle “Notorious” Nick Getley “Haunted” Alex Holmes “Macabre” Aaron Milligan “Bloody” Ben Rachow “Sacrificial” Bridget Sweeney “Frightening” Sean Fox “Spooky” Sasha Karen Jason (Vorees) English Johnny (Crime) Scene

FALLO + $169 for PC version. *Unlicensed prop replica. Limited time only.

OUT 4 +

Mad Max launches on PS4, Xbox One, and PC Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment and Avalanche Studios’ action packed open-world car shooter Mad Max launched today for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows PC. The Mad Max video game features an all-new original story set in the Mad Max universe. Players will assume the role of Max, the iconic hero of the Mad Max films, as he battles various factions with both hand-to-hand and vehicular combat.

comes to life with a brand new story for Mad Max.” “Avalanche Studios are big fans of Mad Max and creating an open-world game in such a brutal setting was right up our alley,” said Christofer Sundberg, Avalanche Studios Co-founder and

Chief Creative Officer. “We can’t wait to see how players customize their Max characters, as well as their cars.” Sticky Trigger will have a review of Mad Max in next month’s issue, so watch this space!

“Mad Max is an iconic character, recently re-introduced to the world by the latest film, and now we’re introducing a new way for fans and gamers to experience the adventure-filled Wasteland universe in which he lives,” said Peter Wyse, Vice President, Group General Manager, Production and Development, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. “Avalanche Studios has created an expansive, beautiful open world environment that




Mortal Kombat X Cancelled For Xbox 360 And PS3 Warner Bros. Interactive have confirmed that the release of Mortal Kombat X for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, has been cancelled. Initially released back in April for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC – Mortal Kombat X was slated for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 at some point in the winter. Following a recent statement on the Mortal Kombat X forums, Warner Bros. Interactive eventually came to the “regrettable” conclusion that they could reach the standards set by the current generation hardware. “We were not able to get the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions to the quality expected of a Mortal Kombat game and are very sorry for not being able to deliver the products as originally planned,” Warner Bros wrote. “If you preordered Mortal Kombat X for PS3 or Xbox 360, please go to

the retail location where you preordered the game and you will receive a full refund.” Mortal Kombat X was reviewed back in April by our writer, Johnny Scene. Whilst the story didn’t win any considerable praise – Johnny very much enjoyed the core fighting mechanics of Mortal Kombat X, awarding the fighting game a solid 8/10.

Metal Gear Solid V Sells 3 Million Units PS4 Version Tops

“In practice, Mortal Kombat X is one of the most plainly enjoyable and likable gaming experiences I’ve had in ages,” Johnny wrote in his review. “But on paper, there’s a lot not to like, and it feels like a missed opportunity for NetherRealms to create a genuinely next-gen fighter with the amount of time they’ve put into it.”

It’s now been a few week since the initial launch of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, and so far the it’s sold over 3 million units globally.

Check the full review here:

With recent reports from Dual Shockers, Euro Gamer and Forbes – at this point the PlayStation 4 copies seem to be garnishing the most popularity, with sales reporting in that more than 72 per cent of all units were sold on this platform. Following the remaining statistics – Xbox One versions of Metal Gear Solid V top second place with 22 per cent, 3 per cent for PlayStation 3, and two per cent on Xbox 360. At this point, it would seem that PC release is by far the lowest selling platform, with only 1 per cent. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is currently available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC. For more info – including the upcoming Metal Gear Solid V video review – be sure to stick with Sticky Trigger Entertainment.

Borderlands Movie Currently In The Works Lions Gate Entertainment has confirmed that they’re currently in development for a Borderlands movie.

have been involved in the development of such films as Iron Man, Spider Man, X-Men, Ghost Rider and Blade.

In a recent news report from variety, Hollywood producers Avi and Ari Arad are currently expected to sign up for the upcoming project. In the past, the duo

Released back in 2009, Borderlands is a role-playing first person shooter created by Gearbox Software. To this day the series has spawn two sequels, and a

spin-off title, Tales from the Borderlands, from Telltale games. No news as of yet for the possible release date. In the meantime, be sure to check out Nicks recent review for Borderlands: The Handsome Collection. Rating it a superb 9.3/10 in his review, Nick praised the package as a worthy purchase for the modern hardware. “While it’s loot-centric shooterama gameplay might not tickle everyone – you’d be hard-pressed to find this much story, action and brilliant game design in another FPS,” he wrote in his review. “The Handsome Collection is well worth checking out!” Check the full review here:

Miyamoto Hints Super Mario Galaxy 3’s Possibility Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto has spoken out about the possibility of releasing Super Mario Galaxy 3. In a recent interview from – Miyamoto spoke about Nintendo’s current focus in harking back to its traditional 2D roots in creating titles that “anyone can play”. With New Super Bros. (Wii/WiiU) and the upcoming Mario Maker serving as the main example(s), Miyamoto discussed that the “opportunities” are always on table when it comes to releasing another 3D Mario title. “We’re always thinking, is there a middle ground where people, who do enjoy the 3D worlds of Galaxy, and those who enjoy

New Super Mario Bros. can both enjoy it?” Miyamoto said to Eurogamer. Whilst looking at keeping his games accessibly to a wide audience, Miyamoto went on to also say that he, and Yoshiaki Koizumi (director of Super Mario Galaxy) are always looking to “challenge Galaxy” and do another 3D action title. “As the hardware technology gets better and advances, I think there will be a lot of opportunity for both options,” Miyamoto said,

discussing the chance of releasing both 2D and 3D orientated titles. However with the rumors circulating around about Nintendo’s upcoming NX console – the possibility of a new 3D Mario Game for the Wii U seems very unlikely. Though given the company’s upcoming lineup for the openworld Legend of Zelda game – Miyamoto said that Nintendo is always looking at new ways to “surprise the audience”.

Dark Souls III To Launch In Japan, March 2016

Following a recent press release – From Software has officially announced the Japanese release date for their upcoming action-RPG, Dark Souls III. Set for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, Dark souls III is expected to launch on March 24th of next year. A retail release is said to be priced around 7,460 yen ($86 AUD), with digital versions set for 6,930 yen ($80 AUD). Having been leaked a few days prior to this years E3 – Dark Souls

First DLC for Elder Scrolls Online Released for Consoles

III is fourth entry in From Softwares grueling Souls series, and the second Souls title to be released on next generation consoles. Played in a third-person perspective, players will battle through a wide range of challenging monsters, interact with strange non-playable characters and journey through a series of dark and mysterious environments. The series is also well regarded for its punishing difficulty, tight combat mechanics, and intricate lore.

Imperial City, the first DLC pack for The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited, has been released worldwide for Xbox One and Playstation 4. This comes on the heels of the PC/ Mac rollout earlier in the month. The pack opens up the Imperial City, a new PvP/PvE area with six districts, as well as two new dungeons. Since the city fell to Daedric Prince Molag Bal, who was first seen in Morrowind, all three alliances now must battle the Daedric forces to reclaim the city in addition to fighting each other. These new districts are available to players who have reached level 10, offering hours of new gameplay and exclusive collecti-

From Software has also released details of one the upcoming preorder bonuses expected upon release – with a unique map and soundtrack said to be bundled within the Japanese retail package. A worldwide release is expected to be announced at a later date, along with a PC version of the game.

bles. Players will also encounter new quests and enemies, including the Xivkyn. The Imperial City DLC pack is included with an active ESO Plus membership or it is available for purchase in the Crown Store for 2,500 crowns. For more information about the inclusions, head to Check out the trailer below!

Plague Inc: Evolved To Hit Xbox One

Jack the Ripper DLC For Assassin’s Creed Syndicate

Ndemic Creations has announced that their hit virus simulation game Plague Inc: Evolved, launched on Xbox One on Friday 19 September 2015. In a recent press release, the port comes following the initial E3 announcement at Microsoft’s press conference early last year. Having already been released for Steam Early Access, Plague Inc: Evolved has been a big success – with up to half a million players confirmed within the first 12 months of sales, and over 55 million players purchasing the initial Plague Inc. from the iTunes and Android app store. To those who might not be familiar with the title – Plague Inc: Evolved is strategy game to which players must develop a pathogen, infect the entire human race, and evolve deadly symptoms to end to all human life on the planet. As well managing symptoms and providing avenues for the pathogen to travel – players will also need to be mindful of their severity levels, as scientists will try to cure the deadly pathogen before it gets the chance kill everyone. Ndemic has confirmed that free updates and DLC are expected later on down the track. For now, be sure to check out the following trailer down below.

Ubisoft has recently announced that their upcoming title Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, will be receiving a DLC campaign featuring Jack the Ripper. Presented within Sony’s Press Conference for the Tokyo Game Show – the DLC will be set 20 years after Syndicate’s initial story, were players will work alongside Inspector Frederick Abberline as they hunt down the infamous serial killer of Whitechapel. As well having this campaign purchased separately – players can also procure this DLC within

Syndicate’s upcoming season pass. In addition to the Jack the Ripper DLC, the upcoming pass is said to also include two additional gameplay packages (“The Last Maharaja” and “Streets of London”), which promises to add both additional side missions and XP boosts. Assassin’s Creed Syndicate is set to Launch on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 on October 23rd, with a PC release expected for November 19th. In the meantime, be sure to take a look at following announcement trailer down below.

New Kingdom Hearts Game Announced Collaborated through both Disney Interactive and Square Enix, the series spawned many sequels across various gaming platforms. In addition to this title, Kingdom Hearts 3 is another title expected to receive a launch at some point this year. Following Sony’s recent press conference from the Tokyo Game Show – Bandai Namco has recently unveiled Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue. In accordance to their initial press release, Kingdom Hearts 2.8 is a remake of the original Kingdom Hearts 3DS title, Dream Drop Distance. The story will focus on central protagonists, Sora and Riku, as they partake on the Mark of Mastery exam in preparation for the “coming threats”

of Xehanort’s return. As well as improved resolution and visuals, additional content such as the new episode “A Fragmentary Passage” and a HD movie, is said to be included within this remaster.

Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue is expected to launch on the PlayStation 4 later next year. For now, be sure to check the official announcement trailer down below.

For those who may not be familiar with the series – Kingdom Hearts is a crossover series of role-playing games, that mixes universes of both Disney with a Final Fantasy together.

World of Tanks Coming to Playstation 4 Wargaming has announced that the wildly popular MMO World of Tanks will be coming to Playstation 4 in the near future. No concrete release date has been offered yet but there is speculation that it will be in 2016.

touchpad support. Players can also make use of Share Play and Playstation Vita Remote Play functions. This comes as part of a handheld revamp to the controls to optimise the experience for users.

First released on PC in 2011 and later Xbox Live Arcade in 2014, the release will introduce more features to the game to make the most of the new platform. The DualShock 4 functionality will incorporate the light bar and controller speaker capabilities, as well as the all-important

World of Tanks will not require a PlayStation Plus membership and will be free for all account holders. There will be, however, bonuses available to Playstation Plus members including a free premium tank with exclusive camouflage, three days of premium account time, and special

discounts on in-game purchases. The game currently boasts 150 million players and to entice new ones, Wargaming will offer two new Playstation-exclusive maps for a limited time as well. Interested players are able to sign up for the beta and all World of Tanks news right now through their website. Don’t forget to check out the tank-filled announcement trailer!




! S E S EA







Fallout Anthology



NBA Live 16

PS4, XB1


Tony Hawks Pro Skater 5

PS4, XB1



PS4, XB1, 360, PS3


Samurai Warriors 4 Empires



Animal Crossing Happy Home Designer



Darksiders 2 Deathinitive Edition

PS4, XB1


Uncharted The Nathan Drake Collection



Transformers Devastation

PS4, XB1, 360, PS3


The Witcher 3 Wild Hunt Hearts of Stone Expansion



Dragon Ball Z Extreme Butoden



Back to the Future 30th Anniversary

PS4, XB1, 360


Disgaea 5 Alliance of Vengeance



Dragon Quest Heroes Day One Edition



Shovel Knight

PS4, XB1, PC, 3DS, Wii U


Tales of Zestiria

PS4, PS3


Wasteland 2 Directors Cut

PS4, XB1


Guitar Hero Live

PS4, XB1, 360, PS3, Wii U


Adventure Time Finn and Jake Investigations

PS4, XB1, 360, PS3, 3DS


Just Dance 2016

PS4, XB1, 360, PS3, Wii, Wii U


Just Dance Disney Party 2

XB1, 360, Wii, Wii U


Assassins Creed Syndicate Special Edition

PS4, XB1


Jackbox Games Party Pack

PS4, XB1, 360, PS3


The Legend of Zelda Tri Force Heroes



Halo 5 Guardians



WWE 2K16

PS4, XB1, 360, PS3


Minecraft Story Mode Season Disc

PS4, XB1, 360, PS3, PC


BIG SAVINGS! Got unwanted games or consoles sitting around at home? Bring them into Gametraders and we’ll give you store credit that you can use when you buy anything in-store! Ask staff on how you can trade & save now! PLUS at Gametraders you can choose from our massive range of discounted pre-owned and retro gaming! Buying, selling & trading retro now!












Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon (Nintendo 3DS) (2013)

Luigi has always been in his bigger brother’s shadow, but he takes the spotlight in the fantastic Luigi’s Mansion series. Dark Moon, the long awaited sequel on 3DS to the initial game on Gamecube is a fantastic gem that provides you with the staple things you normally see in “Mario” games of puzzles, exploration, item collection with two things you normally don’t: combat and spooks! Luigi finds himself tasked with cleaning up a number of spooky locales from haunted mansions to even more haunted mountains, all

the time sucking up ghosts with his trusty Poltergust 5000 – a supercharged vacuum cleaner for the supernatural. The normal series standards are all well up to snuff with great puzzles and welldesigned levels but Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon really shines in its combat where Luigi must suck ghosts into his Poltergust. It’s not easy though! The bigger and more powerful the ghosts, the harder it is and the game poses some seriously tough challenges capturing some of the bigger spooks. Indeed bigger spooks are also to be found figuratively – despite being a family

friendly title I still jumped with shock more than once each mission when I was surprised by ghosts or fell down a trapdoor, but it’s the best kind of fun scare. Combined with a surprisingly endearing plot that shows a true hero is the one that does the job no matter how scared they are, Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon is among the best games you find involves ghosts, ghouls, and… vacuum cleaners.

Haunting Starring Polterguy (Sega Genesis/Mega Drive) (1993) Electronic Arts’ Haunting Starring Polterguy was a radical departure from their usual games. In it, players assumed the role of Polterguy, a ghost who was exacting his revenge on the Sardini family. When he was alive, Polterguy was a skateboarding punk. Unfortunately, a defective skateboard from Vito Sardini’s company resulted in a fatal accident for Polterguy, who now follows the Sardini family from house to house, scaring the pants off them as often as he can. Gameplay was presented from a third-person isometric perspective, with the player able to access a

map to help him stalk the four members of the Sardini family. Polterguy can’t directly interact with the Sardinis (he’s invisible and also passes straight through them), so he has to use his smarts and possess various household items in the Sardini’s homes. He can turn a lounge into a giant mouth, a door frame into a menacing gargoyle, and other, more horrific illusions. The game had some very well executed animations, especially from the Sardini family when they were getting spooked. Everything was presented with a cheeky sense of humour, and you’d have to be made

of stone to not chuckle at a grown man peeing himself from a UFO that flies out of a refrigerator! Haunting Starring Polterguy is a very unique game, there was nothing quite like it at the time and there has only been one other well-known game like it since (which was a tribute of sorts). It offered hauntings and humour, gore and guts, and spooky strategy. While the controls and gameplay aren’t the greatest, you’d be hard pressed to find a game quite like Haunting Starring Polterguy.

Decap Attack (Sega Genesis) (1991)

Decap Attack stars Chuck D. Head, a mummy created by Dr. Frank N. Stein, who is sent on a mission to defeat Max D. Cap, who has returned from the Underworld seeking to overthrow the surface. Max has separated the land into multiple scattered islands, which Chuck will reform along his adventures. If the story sounds a little sketchy and saturated with goofy puns, that’s because the game is an unusual Westernized port of Magical Hat no Buttobi Tabo! Daibōken, a game based on the Japanese anime, Magical Hat. Vic Tokai (the game’s developer) couldn’t secure

a license for a game based on Magical Hat outside of Japan, they instead created Decap Attack, which had a radically different story and design theme, as well as reworked enemies and levels. Decap Attack was a platformer similar to Super Mario Bros., though it had a heavier focus on vertical traversing levels, meaning that you quite often had to climb up to great heights in order to complete your objectives. Unfortunately, missing a collectible often meant an annoying amount of backtracking throughout the level, though the gameplay overall was pretty solid.

Demon’s Crest

(Super Nintendo Entertainment System) (1994) Demon’s Crest is the third game starring Firebrand, a demon who also features in Capcom’s Ghost’s ‘n Goblins series, though in his own games, he’s the hero, and not an enemy of Arthur. In Demon’s Crest, players take control of Firebrand as he seeks to reclaim six magical gems that offer unlimited power, as well as exact revenge on a rival demon that has stolen the gems from him. Gameplay is a mix of platforming with minor RPG elements, and feels like a mix of Mega Man, Ghouls ‘n

Ghosts and Super Metroid. The player can attempt any level in the game whenever they wish, though they will need certain items in order to explore certain areas. There are also boss battles, and an impressive overworld that sees players flying over the world map and landing on a level they wish to play. Upon its release, Demon’s Crest gained favourable reviews, though critics such as GamePro criticized the music, as well as the lack of enemy attacks and tactics. I for one like the soundtrack, and found it to

have a catchy and gothic sound that lent a lot to the game’s atmosphere. It was unusual to play as a demon/ gargoyle in video games in the 90s, as this was well before the time when anti-heroes and darker heroes were commonplace in games. Each level was intimidating, and due to the dark and somewhat scary level design, Demon’s Crest remains a unique retro title that is well worth playing, even today.

Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare (PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4) (2014) When I first heard of Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare, I scratched my head in confusion. Developed by PVZ creator Popcap, PVZ: Garden Warfare featured a variety of characters and game modes, but promised accessibility and lighthearted fun. I bit the bullet and purchased the game up on its release and I can honestly say it is one of the most underrated games of this generation. PVZ: Garden Warfare features a number of online modes, and could be described as an all ages version of Battlefield, with a third-person

perspective and the ability to play as (and customise) a variety of plant or zombie characters. There’s PVZ: Garden Warfare’s take on a tower defense/survival mode, which sees players controlling plants as they protect a garden from an invading zombie horde. They can plant different types of seeds into strategically placed pots, which will grow into lethal artillery. Mortar-launching corn stalks, fireshooting pea pods, punching bok choys and more can all be unlocked with currency earned in-game.

Garden Warfare is an absolute blast to play, especially with friends. The game is accessible, and able to be enjoyed by anyone, regardless of age, gender or level of gaming experience. I’ve spent countless hours playing it on both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and can’t wait for the sequel. It might feature zombies, but there isn’t a scare or drop of blood in sight. Do yourself a favour and check out Garden Warfare when you can!

Ghost Hunters (ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC) (1987) An Oliver Twins (of the Dizzy fame) classic, Ghost Hunters was released by Code Masters in 1987. The game takes place in a monster filled mansion where the goal is to find and rescue your brother. A platformer in the vein of Super Robin Hood (the Oliver Twins earlier title), the control system is difficult to get the hang of. To shoot the enemies the player has to remain still and use the controls to move a crosshair. While it feels fiddly to begin with, it actually works really well. Released on the Amstrad CPC, and later the ZX Spectrum, the player controls a macho man called ‘Hunk Studbuckle’ (hey, if I was changing my name I’d go with that!). As with most platform games contact with

the enemy will cause damage, or in this case it will cause your ‘Terrormeter’ to go up. When it’s at maximum you’re dead. There are plenty of monsters to keep your crosshair moving, such as ghosts, zombies, skeletons and more. While it feels rather tame today, as a young lad playing the game in a dark room in the 80s, I could see that the game may be a little scary if you were easily startled. The Oliver Twins claim that the sampled speech in the game was so CPU intensive they had to stop action on the screen while it played. The game also features a cheat mode, but if you use it you can’t complete the game properly, so be warned!

Werewolves of London (ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64) (1987) Another 8-bit computer title, Werewolves of London was released on the Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64 and ZX Spectrum. In this game you find yourself in an unfortunate predicament, as you’ve been cursed to turn into a werewolf by a family of well-to-do aristocrats. The only way you’re going to be able to break this curse is to track down the wicked souls who damned you and kill them. Thankfully a werewolf is a killing machine, so this shouldn’t pose too much of a problem. Werewolves of London is an arcade adventure that takes place on the

streets and the underground of London (obviously). During the day you are an ordinary man with no real abilities, so this is the time to track the family members. At night, as the werewolf, you can kill them. When a family member is on the screen with you a cross will flash in the corner. The problem is that there may be multiple people on the screen with you, so you might have problems finding the right person, especially if they leave the screen and you’re required to follow them. Once dead you can also eat your victims for some much needed health, but beware, as the police will not hesitate

to arrest or shoot the werewolf. As a human you can walk around freely and they leave you alone. The Amstrad game is the only version worth playing, as the other versions are incomplete releases. A great game that offers a surprising amount of freedom and is a lot of fun!

WRITTEN by nick getley, alex holmes & paul monopoli WWW.STICKYTRIGGER.COM




YOU SCARED? When was the last time you played a really scary game or watched a movie that gave you chills? That’s going to depend on what you define as scary. In horror there are a number of sub genres that games and movies fall into and some might be more likely to keep you awake late at night then others. Let’s take a look…


This is where the horror element comes from the graphic depiction of horror involving the human body. Disease, mutilation… consider the movie Alien where the human body is used to grow the alien that then bursts out of the human’s body and grows into an acid-blood filled monster that kills most of the crew. Other “body horror” movies include The Blob The Fly Slither Plus video games including, Bioshock, Deadspace, Fallout and many more.

Survival Horror



These type of movies and games tend to freak you out mentally, they play on your fears and often have a supernatural element to the story. Films such as The Exorcist, The Shinning, The Blair Witch Project and Insidious fall into this category. They play on your mind and often will linger in your mind long after you’ve finished watching. Some films like The Exorcist had profound affects on people using the theme of possession by evil combined with a regular suburban setting that it still ranks as one of the scariest movies of all time. Games include: Silent Hill 2 Dead Space F.E.A.R and Alan Wake These are the sort of games you might not want to play alone at night, with the lights off after everyone has gone to bed…

Sci-Fi Horror

This is one of my personal favourites. Sci-Fi Horror tends to deal with aliens, paranormal and can include science experiments that have gone wrong - consider The Fly for example. Some of the best movies in this genre include Alien, 28 Days Later, I Am Legend and many others. You might notice that some films cross genres. For example Alien is Science Fiction and Body Horror due to the content and setting. Games in this genre include.. System Shock 2 Dead Space Doom Note - I can remember playing the first Doom game late at night, headphones on, lights off and the family in bed. I can honestly say it actually made me jump a few times and even with those pixelated graphics it managed to be creepy enough to get me to turn the lights back on…

In this genre the character tends to be more vulnerable, less armed then say in Doom, and relies on cunning and puzzle solving to survive as against violence and brute force. Most of us would relate the term to games such as Resident Evil but movies too, can be classified as Survival Horror. Dawn of the Dead, The Thing and The Mist come to mind as well as classics like A Nightmare on Elm Street and 30 Days of Night. In all these the character/s do their best to survive a period of time or an enemy that is intent on hurting them down and killing them. Games include : Resident Evil Parasite Eve Blue Stinger and Silent Hill These games have a tendency to make you jump with sudden noises or creepy visuals that can play on your mind like Psychological Horror games do. There are many more sub genres that come under the horror theme, including Ghost Stories, Monsters, Japanese Horror and the list goes on. We’d love to hear about your favourite genre of horror so send in your picks to and we’ll print them in our next issue.






Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls




man Preview


HITMAN Square Enix and IO Interactive have released some gameplay clips of the highly anticipated HITMAN. Focused on the core of what makes a great HITMAN game, the video provides us a little more detail into some of the new level designs, disguises, and creative elements into taking out specific targets. Whilst currently an Alpha preview, the mission “Showstopper” gives us an idea about the new direction that IO are now aiming for the series.

Within the playthrough, IO Interactive gives us a little context for our target, Viktor Novikov – a world renown fashion brand owner, who is currently the owner of the spy agency IAGO. After the briefing, IO Interactive goes into detail about the new load-out system throughout HITMAN. Whilst unlocking more weapons throughout missions, HITMAN players can choose whatever weapons they wish to use throughout these missions. With IO showcasing such melee weapons as wrenches, katanas and screw drivers – players can decide for themselves their method of play and just

noisy or brutal they want to be within HITMAN.

Much like Absolution, IO Interactive has placed just as much emphasis on creating a “living world” for players to explore. Much like in Blood Money and Absolution, the wonderful crowed system has also made a glorious return to HITMAN,- with up 300+ simulated NPC’s spawned into place in creating these vibrant levels. In addition to this, selected NPC’s throughout these levels will also participate in their own little activities throughout these worlds – with various dialogue exchanges taking place that may/may not serve as a key element in exploring these missions. But what helps this game in providing further depth, would definitely have to be scale of each of the levels. In comparison to Absolution, these new levels within HITMAN are absolutely enormous. With the vast openness in infiltrating certain areas, and differences some areas have on others – needless to say I’m incredibly eager in playing through

these new digital playgrounds.

Whether HITMAN fans loved or hated it, Hitman Absolution’s ‘instinct’ system is now an optional feature for this new title – meaning, fans of the classics can experience this new title in it’s initial stealthy style. As for the disguise system, that too has been altered – with the new system harking back to its original roots and ditching the whole ‘instinct’ bar in sneaking past specific NPCs. But with that said, there are some individuals who aren’t easily as fooled by 47’s masquerade talents. Indicted by a little triangle, higher up security guards will be able notice you instantly – meaning, that disguises will not always the main go-to option in infiltrating particular areas. HITMAN is expected to launch December 8th, 2015 on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC. In the meantime, be sure to check out this lengthy preview down below.

Click to view the trailer here!



OUT 27.




MBI review



In the world of Zombi, there exists a 400 year old Black Prophecy. Astronomer John Dee predicted that the apocalypse would strike in 2012 should the Ravens ever leave the Tower of London. In response appeared a secret society known as the Ravens of Dee, dedicating themselves to diverting this grisly end for humankind. Imagine the surprise when we flash forward to 2012 London, the city shattered by this very same apocalypse. As one of the few survivors still alive, oblivious to all this soothsaying, the player is led to the safe house of an exsoldier known as the Prepper and instructed on how to survive.

(Yes, he’s called the Prepper. He gives you a set of supplies called a bug-out bag. It’s just…don’t worry about it. I snickered at these names, too.)

Which brings us to the zombies themselves. For a city as densely packed as London (5,490 people per square kilometre, says Wikipedia), the shambling dead are very light on the ground. Zombi takes the route of each infected being a genuine threat on their own. Able to sense light and noise, they charge at you with unnerving speed, each strike taking a fair chunk out of your health. The various types are all here – your spitters, your screamers, your armoured ex-soldiers – and even the most basic of the lot will take several smacks about the head to put down. With any group larger than three constituting a serious problem, the player must move carefully forward, checking every corner, sparingly using their gun and flashlight so as not to alert even more of the dead. Just like Prepper would have wanted.

Once you’ve established yourself at Prepper’s base, it’s time to strike out bravely into the infested streets of London. Your current survivor must rummage through the usual array of wrecked shops and army checkpoints, gathering the weapons and supplies needed to protect yourself against the zombie horde. With ammo incredibly scarce – London has clearly fallen quite some time ago – the player must usually resort to melee combat, fighting off the living dead with your trusty cricket bat firmly in hand.

This careful, dangerous approach to the living dead might make for a tense experience if not for the fact that the combat is so utterly dull. Though your choice of weapons does open up later on, for the most part it’ll just be you and ol’ Batty trudging backwards, swinging away to conserve your extremely limited ammo. There are molotovs, grenades, various guns and even a virucide injection, but the sheer scarcity of them means that you’ll never want to waste what you’ve got. In this way, a lot of the fearful

moments that could be there are instead just frustrated swinging at zombies that just won’t go down. Thrashing about wildly in a pitchblack subway station does not horror make.

What it comes down to, simply put, is that there’s not much reason to care. Every survivor is completely interchangeable, a new skin slapped on the old model. Everyone you meet and everywhere you go hits the same zombie-horror plot beats we’ve seen for decades. With the grizzled Prepper grumbling backstory in your ear, you meet the doctor working on the cure, the secret society who knows more than they’re letting on, the group of survivors turned savage and bloodthirsty. People get turned with such predictable regularity that you could set your watch to it. Backdrops like Buckingham Palace and shoddy council flats add some variety, but it takes just one glance at your minimap to remind you that you’re still very much set on rails. That said, there is one thing you’ll care about: your stuff. The twist of Zombi is that any time your survivor falls to the slavering jaws of the horde, control is switched to a different survivor back at base. Presumably this person also went through all Prepper’s training and got caught up on the relevant plot details, because nobody so much as bats an

eye that a complete stranger is just picking up where the last person left off. The neatest detail of this concept is that backtracking to where you died will reveal your previous self shambling about as a newborn zombie. Cave that past loser’s skull in and you can retrieve everything they were carrying. It both emphasises your mortality and gives you no real punishment for dying, save for a bit of backtracking and the loss of any accumulated gun skills – an odd choice for survival horror. The other novel feature of Zombi

was the gamepad, done away with now we’re off the Wii U. Some of the game’s tensest moments came in the use of this second screen. With your eyes averted, fumbling with a locked door or searching through your pack, the paranoia of a zombie leaping out at any moment rode high. Without the gamepad, Zombi is just another action game that doesn’t pause when you bring up the menu. (Oh, and for the graphics crowd: yes, it does look a bit better. Not much. Graphic upgrades are so in-

cremental these days that it hardly merits mentioning.) All in all, the saddest part of Zombi is that since 2012, a lot of games have just…done it better. State of Decay made scrounging for supplies more rewarding, Dead Rising made battling the horde more fun, Dying Light gave you much more scope to explore. Compared to its peers, the experience is still good, but good is as far as it goes. Taken as a whole, Zombi is as slow and clumsy as the dead it depicts.

6/1 0


Click to view the trailer here!





OUT 19.11.15


RZA 6 review



10 years ago, Gran Turismo was the king of console racers. Many strived to be like it, but no one could imitate the grand daddy of consoles. Then, 10 years ago, a young upstart racing series launched on Xbox with the legend of console racers firmly in its sights; a fresh face challenging the old guard, much like Pagani did with Ferrari and alike. And from the beginning, it was clear that this was something special; as Gran Turismo wore out the laurels of success that GT4 brought it, this new title grew and grew. So much so, that by the time GT5 came along in 2010, the Xbox title had brought out 3 new games. Each one better than the last one. And in the last 10 years, that same franchise has churned out 8 titles. And this year, Forza Motorsport has saved its best for the double figure milestone. Welcome to Forza Motorsport 6: a celebration of all things motoring, and one hell of a 10th birthday party.

FM6 features over 450 cars, each one painstakingly recreated in the virtual world to the most minute of details; from old JDM favourites to the newest and deadliest machines, the entire timespan of vehicles in FM6 ranges from 1939 F1 to the yet to be released 2017 Ford GT…almost 80 years of motoring to sample! Each vehicle can be customized to particular classes, with both performance and visual modi-

fications from simple air intakes to entire engine swaps, drive train conversions and more.

Wheels and body parts can be changed, and there’s a giant pallet of standard and custom paint colours and finishes to choose from. And of course, there’s one of Forza Motorsports trademarks-a fully customizable vinyl and decal system, enabling you to build and design the cars of your dreams. Players can create and share their own tunes, designs and liveries for others to download, and you are able to transfer any designs you made in Forza 5 or Horizon 2, meaning you can almost pick up where you left off. The cars are simply gorgeous; the auto vista feature is available for every car in the game, meaning you can admire, explore and sit in any vehicle you want. From humble super minis to international open wheelers and multimillion dollar endurance prototypes, Forza 6 has put in a huge effort to make sure all aspects of motoring-and motorsport are included. It is quite literally on for young and old! The cars are the real stars of this show, but the settings and tracks do a fantastic job of being the supporting cast. Old favourites return, with some new locations added. The street course in Rio, for example. Real world location additions in-

clude Brands Hatch, Daytona, Lime Rock Park and Watkins Glen. Some tracks also benefit from the newest and most obvious addition to the series; changing weather and time of day settings. Whilst it only applies to certain tracks, it is quite incredible to experience. In the wet, you need to be on your toes; painted lines and ripple strips become icy trips off the track. Puddles not only slow you down, but can also pull your car to one side, and in some cases even cause you to aquaplane off if you aren’t playing attention. Night racing is also a fantastic and atmospheric addition. Flying around the brightly lit Daytona oval makes you think that nothing has changed, until you abruptly plunge into darkness through the infield, squinting as your eyes adjust as you rely on your headlights to guide you to the next corner. Le Mans and Nurburgring at night are also a daunting battle; with nothing but black behind and in front, with only your opponents headlights darting in and out of view, you really get the feeling you’re on your own.

Career mode has been simplified; you progress through 5 tiers, ranging from street tuners up to the pinnacle of international motor racing. Each tier or ‘volume’ covers 3 championships, which you must progress through to proceed to the next volume. With each Vol-

Click to view the trailer here! Click to view the trailer here!

ume you have 6 different classes of car to choose from to progress; you can play the same group 3 times to advance if you have a favourite car, but where’s the fun in that? If you need a break from progressing through the championships, there’s also a host of ‘showcase’ events, separate to career mode, which pit you against certain challenges in a host of car classes, allowing you to experience the broader story of motorsport. Expect to hear from a host of motoring and motorsport personalities as well, providing you with information and guidance with tackling the world’s best. As you earn cash and xp, you build reputation, and each level gives you a wheel spin gift, similar to the levelling system in Horizon 2. Another new addition to help you on the way are ‘mods’. Either won or purchased, mods give you certain one off or permanent boosts; either cash bonuses, xp boosts, or handling and braking upgrades. You can equip up to 3, and whilst it can made the game seem a little less realistic, it doesn’t force you to use them. They’re just a helping hand if you want it. Coupled with the massive amount of options you can select and adjust, Forza 6 helps cater for any level of racer. Drivatars are also back, though this time they’ve been to racing school. You can turn off Drivatars to face a more balanced competition, or you can adjust whether or not the Drivatars act aggressively. But be awake if you do let them; they aren’t afraid to weave, block and dive bomb you

in order to get ahead. They will happily wipe the smile off your faceeven if it means wiping the front of their car off in the process. They’re human in a sense; they make mistakes, they out brake themselves, they run off track. It adds a new and challenging dimension to the game, and when you have 23 other cars on track battling for your position, coupled with the day/night cycles, with the threat of rain, it all comes together to bring a experience that blows you away. I see a lot of comparison between GT4 and FM6. Both featured the Ford GT as their poster boy, albeit in different guises. Both represented a huge step forward for not just their series, but the genre in general. And I haven’t been this excited and keen on a racing game since GT4. I think I’ve finally found my replacement. Forza is happily celebrating 10 years of producing top shelf content, and it’s a ride they’re only too happy to take you along on. If you’ve played previous Forza titles, it not only rewards you for it, but thanks you being a part of their 10 year journey. And yes, it’s a game. But it’s a thank you that feels quite genuine. It’s not just a 10th anniversary launch, and it isn’t just another title in the series. This is the new benchmark. And as much as I like Gran Turismo, Forza has raised the bar yet again. After all, releasing a game on your 10th anniversary is always a good start…thanks for the 10 years Forza. And here’s to another 10 more.







9.4 /10

WRITTEN BY ben rachow



OUT 23.




DZILLA review

REVIEW With over 50 years of films, and a wide range of westernized reboots and sequels – the Godzilla series is one of the most universally acclaimed monsters franchises to date. As a long time fan of the series myself, I have since longed for the release of a one decent Godzilla fighting game – complete with all the cheesy and awesome aspects that made these classics films, so fun to watch. So when I heard the news that Namco Bandai was working on a PlayStation 4 title – as you can guess, I was actually looking forward to this game. But as it turns out through its clunky combat, uninspired game modes and ugly presentation – that not even the most ample fanservice is able to save Godzilla from the realms of mediocrit. Whilst paying homage to the original movie with one fairly decent tutorial screen – it’s from here on out, that things go downhill. With only two offline modes, God of Destruction and King of Kaiju are the only single player experiences within the entirety of Godzilla. With King of Kaiju focused on monster on monster action, God of Destruction is essentially the main story mode for Godzilla. As explained in the tutorial screen – Japan has been making a nuisance out of Godzilla’s energy source, by harvesting these precious materials for power. With no other alternatives but to wreck havoc amongst these machines, players embark on a quest to destroy these pesky generators, in order to harvest the energy for our big green monster. And with that said, that’s pretty much the bulk of the experience within God of Destruction.

GODZILLA Players will stomp around, destroy generators, and will repeat this annoying process for 7-10 stages as they try to get Godzilla to grow. With not much variety – aside from a mode that allows to you defend these machines – as you can imagine, the appeal of this mode wears out its welcome quick. Sure Godzilla tries to hide this boring factor through destroying vehicles and levelling entire cities to the ground. But even with that, it still isn’t able to excuse the minimal effort placed into this poor and disappointing campaign. With little attention placed into the destructibility, buildings at most will flicker a few times before letting a lackluster explosion. Needless to say, not even Michael Bay himself will be able to salvage much fun from wreaking havoc amongst these pitiful landscapes. As for destroying vehicles – spotting these things on the map is either an annoying process in itself, or just flat-out nuisance in trying to target properly. When you’re not attacking generators, monsters will sometimes appear depending on either how much of the city you’ve destroyed or how long you’ve been playing of the level. Whilst admittedly the thought of battling one of Godzillas many kaijus may sound appealing on paper – it isn’t until you discover by playing it, just how boring and broken the combat mechanics are. Performing attacks are awkward and in some cases, fail to connect at all. The move list is complete gar-

bage, as a lot of the attacks fail to register. And fighting off particular Kaiju can be an extremely agonizing considering, just how unbalanced every monster is.

Enemy Kaiju – especially on the harder difficulty – will hound you endlessly with the same two moves over, and over again. And given that there’s no block button as well, players will find themselves at a dismay as they try to escape these annoying cheap combos. As for the presentation, visually this game looks incredibly dated. So much so, that if it wasn’t for the appearance of the 2014 Godzilla – this game could’ve easily been mistaken as a late PlayStation 2 title. Color ranges from the most disgusting looking variations of grey, green and brown – and a lot of the levels are designed so small and restrictive to the point, that it will almost make players claustrophobic. Truly though, the only thing that stands out is probably both the sound, and the design of the many Kaiju featured in Godzilla. But even with that, the monsters regardless are dated models – and the sound does eventually become repetitive through the limited tracks presented within these stages. Through its poor visuals, mediocre gameplay and broken combat mechanics – Godzilla manages to ruin all the potential that this title might’ve had. My advice – pick up the movies and instead, binge your way through the entirety of the Godzilla franchise.

2.8 /10

Click to view the trailer here!







OUT 06.11.15

Dan Anothe


nganronpa er Episode:

a Despair Girls




Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls BIG SPOILER WARNING: THIS REVIEW WILL SPOIL VITAL PARTS OF DANGAN RONPA. According to what I’ve heard, the world is round… But is that really true? Earth might have the shape of rock candy, like that spiky lump of sugar your grandma would wrap in a tissue. But I don’t really know for sure. It’s not like I’ve actually seen the shape of the Earth. In the same way, I’ve never actually seen most things that are considered ‘common knowledge.’ Common knowledge and what we take for granted… We base our lives around such uncertain things. Well, not that it matters for me. I mean, my world isn’t even big enough to worry about stuff like the shape of the Earth or common knowledge. In fact, it’s pretty small – so small that it’s actually a little funny. This is my world. This two-bedroom apartment that I live in is my world. My life doesn’t extend beyond these walls. But it’s not like I’m a shut-in or anything! I am actually… imprisoned inside this room.

With those words, the tale of the Ultra Despair Girls begins. After being imprisoned for a year and a half, Komaru Naegi – little sister to the protagonist of the first game, Makoto Naegi – suddenly receives a knock on the door of her apartment/ prison. Rather than a saviour, however, what greets her is something entirely different: a Monokuma. This evil robotic bear (just go with it) is the main villain of the series, now a mass-produced murderbot, and extremely ready to disembowel poor Komaru. Her story looks to be a very short one until, all of a sudden, the bear is blown clean away by Byakuya Togami, a survivor of the first game. He wields a Hacking Megaphone, a kind of gun capable of firing program codes that can damage the bear-bots. Freed from her confines, Komaru is given her own megaphone and sent out into the world.

You think that’s weird? You ain’t seen nothing yet. Different from the visual novel style of the last two Danganronpas, Ultra Despair Girls is an action-shooter hybrid. Komaru emerges into Towa City, one of the few remaining areas untouched by the Tragedy – an

apocalypse-level crumbling of society which plunged the whole world into destruction and anarchy. Soon enough, though, this bastion falls too. All of this is due to the Warriors of Hope: a group of five children who recruited all the kids of Towa City to their side, commanding them to slaughter every adult and create a paradise only for children. (Again, just go with it.) With nothing but her Hacking Megaphone and a newlyfound companion, Komaru must navigate this destroyed city, avoiding death by children and Monokuma at every turn. How this actually shakes out is very linear. Komaru progresses through areas, defeating Monokumas and solving puzzles while trying to work out how to escape, how to survive, and plenty of other things that would be big ol’ spoilers. Most of these puzzles take place in special arcade rooms, restrictions placed on your Bullet usage for added challenge. Others are challenges issued to you by the myriad children ruling over the city. Though there are plenty of brain-teasers and the action segments contain some fairly hectic shooting, fans of the earlier games need not worry: cutscenes plentifully abound, resonating with

the same disturbing-yet-funny writing that the series is known for. In this way, combining a shooter with a visual novel actually works well. Save for collectibles along the way, both genres keep you moving forward, allowing players to focus on the story/blowing up bear robots instead of getting needlessly distracted with side quests. The actual battles offer a decent amount of variety. Though you’ll spend most of your time aiming for the red-eye weak point of the various types of Monokumas, progressing through the story gifts Komaru with further Truth Bullets that mix up the action. Enemies can be halted with Dance, knocked back with the imaginatively-named Knockback, and even remote-controlled. If things ever get too hectic, a simple press of the Triangle button switches to your partner, Genocide Jack, the serial-killer alternate personality of Toko Fukawa, a survivor from the first game. (Seriously, just go with it.) While Toko cannot be killed and has brutal finisher attacks, she only lasts as long as you have batteries, making her hack-and-slash style the perfect solution to overwhelming numbers. It’s a very simple system that creates one of the few drawbacks of the game. Combat is often simply a matter of keeping your distance and aiming at the red eye. Between that and always having Genocide Jack in your back pocket, it can’t be said that the fighting provides any real

challenge. In the same way, many of the game’s puzzles fall over themselves to give you extremely obvious hints, spoiling the pleasure of working it out for yourself. Dangan Ronpa has always been about the story rather than the puzzle, but the variety on show here ends up being diluted by refusing to trust the player’s intellect for longer than one personality-switching sneeze. Thankfully, it’s not all bad. For the fans, everything great about the previous Danganronpas is back in full force. The despair-inducing horror of the post-Tragedy world glows even more vividly outside of the closed arenas of Hope’s Peak Academy and Jabberwock Island. Blood is rendered in pop-art pink, seeping from blue and purple bodies, creating stark contrasts against gloomy streets and blinding right into insane cartoon boardwalks. On the musical side, Masafumi Takada returns to deliver another wonderful soundtrack, echoing the spirit of the previous iterations. It all melds together into a powerful experience, as engaging as any good novel or movie. That said, there is one important caveat: this game is definitely not for kids. As one might expect from a game dealing with children killing adults and the savagery of a ruined society, there are some extremely confronting and upsetting themes on display. Danganronpa as a series has never shied away from really making the player feel

the horror and despair it takes as its main theme, but Ultra Despair Girls shows no hesitating in plunging into ever more horrifying scenarios. If you have any kind of queasiness about discomforting themes at all, be sure to prepare yourself before giving the game a go. That just leaves one question, the scourge of every gamer in this sequel-heavy world: do you have to have played the others to get this one? In short, no. All relevant details of the other games are skilfully relayed through Komaru’s ignorance of her situation and Toko’s reticent explanations. Like always, playing the others will help to catch little hints and nods – there’s a lot there for returning players – but never is it necessary to stop and do research to understand what’s going on. Ultra Despair Girls is, understandably, not for everyone. There are a lot of roadblocks to stop prospective players: the Vita exclusivity, the deeply strange dialogue and characters, the tackling of very upsetting taboo topics. Despite these things, fans will find another incredible entry into the Danganronpa mythos, faithful to the spirit and attitude of its visual-novel brethren. For a newcomer, there’s a deep, rewarding story to be had and plenty of fun shooting maniacal bear robots in between. Really, isn’t that all you can ask for?

8.4 /10 Click to view the trailer here!










I had to drag myself away from playing Super Mario Maker to review Super Mario Maker. That alone should tell you how much of a pull this game has on me!

What better way to celebrate Mario’s 30th Anniversary than by giving Nintendo a break from making Mario games, with a Mario game where we make and play our own levels? With Super Mario Maker, the tools are in our hands, with our only limits stretching as far as our imagination. However with that said, they say a craftsman’s only good as his tools. So just how good are the tools Super Mario Maker provides? Are they well made, or does it all equate to a broken hammer? As mentioned earlier, Super Mario Maker gives you the tools of making Super Mario levels. Equipt with

only the bare necessities at first; elements like various kinds of blocks, coins, the mushroom power up, and basic enemies like Goombas, Koopa Troopas and Piranha Plants; just enough to recreate level 1-1 from Super Mario Bros. for the NES and change. There’s also the option to change each the graphics of each level, with Super Mario Bros. and New Super Mario Bros. U graphics are given to begin with, along with the ground theme.

Later on, options for Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World palettes become available - as well as underground, underwater, ghost house, air ship, and castle themes. These varieties in graphical options, for the most, part look like they were taken straight from their respective games. So much so to the point, that each contains their respective

game’s controls and physics. With that being said, there are little things that do stick out when it comes to the presentation. For the more retro aesthetic setting of Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World - everything about these settings has this oddly placed ‘drop-shadow’ effect, which personally, felt a bit like an immersion killer. I understand the approach that Nintendo had with this design choice, but to me it deterred from allowing to me feel like I was playing a legitimate Mario level. With the New Super Mario Bros. U graphics as well, some background/ enemy animations suffer from reduced frames and look very choppy. Gameplay itself runs smoothly, but the animation sticks out like a sore thumb to say the least. More elements to build with would first be notified after a set amount of time spent editing, and then the new elements would be delivered the next day. Other extras like sound effects, the level timer, and the option to include screen scrolling are also available to be unlocked and edited. A day one update changed this however, with instead changing the requirements to be that after using one of each new available element, and then the placing of so many subsequent elements, would then bring the next set of new elements. With this method, you can unlock everything the game has for making levels within a day. The way the tools themselves work is relatively simple; tap on the GamePad to place a element, press that element to grab it. Grabbing elements can do quite a bit. You can move the element around and let go to replace it. You can shake certain elements to change something about them, put

them in other objects, or give some elements items themselves. Take for instance a red KoopaTroopa. Shake it to turn it from the platform falling green Koopa to the platform patrolling red Koopa. Move it and put it in a pipe to make that pipe pump out red Koopas. Then, give the Koopa a mushroom, and you make the Koopa big. Item placement makes sense, none of the controls are too weird. The thing about shaking elements is that every shakeable item isn’t really detailed anywhere, not in the game at least. Even after everything’s unlocked, there’s still some secrets to be found, which lends an extra layer of exploration. As an aside, when tapping with the GamePad, the music of the currently theme partially plays out. It’s nothing amazing, but I found myself at times tapping out the rhythm, and the music playing was one of those neat little touches that felt right in place. Super Mario Maker also has a lot to offer amiibo-wise. Every released amiibo up to this point so far unlocks a Costume Mario through the Mystery Mushroom item, an eight bit pixel version of that character that turns Mario into that character, exclusively to the Super Mario Bros. palette. This opens up the possibility for theme levels starring Donkey Kong, Link, even Pikachu is available. Previously, Pokémon amiibo were unavailable to be an amiibo skin in Yoshi’s Woolly World, which felt strange considering how dominant Pokémon is as a Nintendo franchise. Even with all the tools given, there’s still room for improvement. Being able to add a checkpoint to a level would really help out for longer lev-

els, or adding slopes to the landscape are prominent in Super Mario games from Super Mario World onward and Super Mario Bros. 3 onward respectively would add a little bit extra to an already fantastic game. The addition of these could be made possible with downloadable content, which thus far is confirmed for the Japanese version of the game with a downloadable costume of the Famitsu mascot Necky the Fox, so the potential is there for more content to be delivered. Even if you don’t have the flair for making, there’s a near-unlimited amount of levels out there for players to choose from. On-disk, there’s the 10 Mario Challenges, where Super Mario Maker presents eight premade stages for you to play through with ten lives to make it. On completion, these levels are saved for you to later edit and to be inspired by. Even with what Super Mario Maker brings to the table, it’s like Nintendo made a Super Mario game’s worth of content. Some levels may be a little on the short side. But for what they lack in length, they provide fun in spades. Then after spending countless hours perfecting your masterpiece, it’s time to take it online. When choosing to upload a stage, you have to perform the clear test, to prove that the level itself is winnable. At first, ten levels can be uploaded. This can be expanded by receiving stars from people who play your level think it’s decent enough. Notifications are received in-game in real time when someone plays or stars your levels, which is pretty cool. Statistics are also given for stages for amount of total attempts compared to the amount of number of level completions, as well as this number as a percentage for the clear rate, the amount of

stars a level has received, and the amount of unique users who have chosen that level. At this point however, levels can only be searched for with a twelve digit code, and can’t be searched for their name, graphic option, or clear rate. Nintendo had been changing hard to take on a modern approach to online play with the Wii U; this twelve digit code feels similar to the friend codes of yore, and with that taking a step back. Like the offline 10 Mario Challenge, the amount of playability online is off the charts. Despite limited ways to search for levels, you can view an assortment of popular, or newly uploaded levels to try out. There’s also the 100 Mario Challenge, where instead of having ten lives playing pre-made levels, the 100 Mario Challenge selects 8 or 16 levels on the easy or normal and expert difficulties, where other user’s uploaded levels are randomly selected for you to play through. A handy feature is the option to be given a different level by holding down the minus button. While I can appreciate really difficult levels, you’re not always in the mood for them. On completion of the 100 Mario Challenge, a Costume Mario skin is unlocked at random – even if it can be unlocked with an amiibo. Granted, some costumes cannot be unlocked with amiibo, so it’s worth playing through the 100 Mario Challenge a whole lot of times no matter what. Super Mario Maker gives every one of us a little bit of Nintendo magic to play with, and to share with others around the world. There’s a little bit of charm and wonder hiding behind every corner, even if the corner can be a little immersion-killing at times. Definitely a must have for any Wii U owners out there.

8.7 /10

Click to view the trailer here!



WRITTEN BY sasha karen



geek o Lights, Camera,

Amstrad Action! retro


GOBLINS! retro

being a wise collector COLLECTIBLES stockpile BOARD GAME REVIEW


retro Celebrating 30 years in 2015 is the spooky Ghosts and Goblins series, otherwise known as Makaimura in Japan. Released by Capcom in September 1985 the first title in the series, “Ghosts and Goblins” was a hard as nails platformer, where the knight Arthur must rescue the princess from the evil Satan and his army of monsters. If a retrogaming challenge is what you seek then look no further, as the original “Ghosts and Goblins” is diabolically difficult. The game features six levels and a variety of weapons that Arthur can use along the way. As it is, he’ll need every last one of them as it’s hard enough getting through the first level let along the whole game! Luckily our hero is equipped with armour, though it is rather flimsy and will fly off his body in one hit. This leaves Arthur in his underwear until he gets hit again and dies. He can pick up extra armour if he’s lucky enough to find the magicians who supply it and defeat them. The graphics are impressive for its time and the controls aren’t too loose. This is important for such a difficult game as deaths, while they may be plentiful, don’t feel cheap. The spooky music plays on a loop, but it’s not objectionable and suits the feel of the game. The enemies are plentiful and some of them will leave you tearing your hair out in frustration. The most famous and frustrating enemy, Red Arremer, will swoop on you, leaving you very little time to move out of the way. More on Red Arremer a bit later. When you get through those 6 soul crushing levels the game forces you to repeat them all over again, only harder. This is, of course, if you bought along the right weapon to defeat Satan with. Without that weapon you get booted back to the beginning of level 5 to allow you a


GOBLINS! chance to find it before confronting him again, then you get to replay the game again at a higher difficulty.

The game was ported to most systems that were around at the time. The NES port is regarded to be a decent version of the game, plus it provided the player with a password system which made things slightly easier. The home computer conversions were a bit hit and miss, for example, the Amstrad CPC version didn’t feature all of the levels and a single hit would kill Arthur. 1988 would see the release of “Ghouls and Ghosts”, the advanced yet just as difficult sequel. Arthur still has a variety of weapons to use and he still loses his armour upon initial contact with an enemy, but with the new game comes new features. The ability to shoot up and down, as well as different types of armour add a new dimension to the gameplay. With these new elements you might think that the game wouldn’t be as difficult as its predecessor, but if you thought that you would be very wrong. With harder enemies, more of them and magicians turning you into ducks or an old man the difficulty has been cranked up a couple of notches. While the sequel was ported to as many systems as possible, a stand-

out version was on the successor to the PC Engine, the Supergrafx. Never released outside of Japan, the Supergrafx was an enhanced PC Engine that was backwards compatible. Few games were released for the system, but an enhanced version of Ghouls and Ghosts was one of them. Though it’s priced at over $100AU on Ebay, I am happy to say I was able to add this to my personal collection a few months ago. I still struggle to get past the first level, but the controls are solid and graphically it’s a beautiful port of the arcade classic. Like the original game, once you complete the game you have to beat it all over again at a higher difficulty level, plus you need the special weapon to defeat the final boss. Though it was noted for its similarities to the previous title, “Ghouls and Ghosts” received critical acclaim throughout the video gaming press. Though the series is defined by those 2 main titles, the spin off series “Gargoyle’s Quest” is also held in high regard. These titles follow the adventures of Red Arremer and take place in the demon realm. The first game was released on the Gameboy, with its sequel being released on the NES. The final game in the series, “Demon’s Crest” was released

on the Super Nintendo and while it’s only considered to be an above average game, it’s a graphical tour de force. Red Arremer later appeared in “SNK vs Capcom: SvC Chaos” for Neo Geo, XBOX and PS2. The legend of Arthur lives on in rereleases and remixes of the original games released on other systems such as the Bandai Wonderswan, PS2, iOS and more. If you want a spooky game to play this halloween you could do a lot worse than delve into the Ghosts and Goblins series.

WRITTEN BY paul monopoli


Lights, Camera,

Amstrad Action! Computer magazines have been around since the dawn of computing itself. Often dreary affairs with lots of text and very little to keep your attention, the magazines of the late 70s and early 80s could put even the most stubborn insomniac to sleep. In 1981 EMAP’s multi format ‘Computer and Video Games’ magazine emerged and was a stand out publication. With a strong focus on games and having fun with your computers, what followed was a revolution in video games journalism, with publishers worldwide following in EMAP’s footsteps. While many of them would fail, some of them would eventually become publishing empires! The Amstrad computer had been around since mid 1984, with the official publication “Amstrad Computer User” being released by Amstrad to support the machine. It was a thick magazine with plenty of articles (some contributed by Top Gear’s Jeremy Clarkson), though there was little for the gamer to get excited about. There were some game reviews in the back, with the odd feature when a big name game was going to be released, but most of the pages were filled with articles for the serious user. Founded by established computer magazine journalists Chris Anderson and Bob Wade, Future Publishing released their first magazine, “Amstrad Action”. Anderson felt that

the Amstrad CPC was deserving of a good magazine, but that the current official mag was pretty ordinary. After some back and forth with Amstrad over the rights of using the company name in the title, as well as countless other problems, the magazine was launched this month, 30 years ago. What issue one lacks in design, it makes up for in character. Early issues were partially created on the Amstrad CPC computers, and while a lot of effort was put into them they do come across as slightly amateurish. Initially the magazine sold poorly, but the team’s vision and expertise bought it back from the brink, and it continued for another 116 issues. So 1+116=117! At 117 issues Amstrad Action was the longest running dedicated 8-bit magazine, ending its run in June 1995. The surprising thing about it was it had been a good couple of years since the final commercial game was released for the computer. The magazine was surviving on coverage of public domain software and programs released by Amstrad enthusiasts who wanted to keep the computer alive.

While other mags wrote articles, Amstrad Action was a magazine that spoke to its reader. It engaged you in a one sided conversation that you still felt you were part of. There were side notes from the editor in brackets (you what now? - ed), letters

columns where arguments between readers and writers would emerge, and ‘tell it like it is’ comments from the staff writers. If a game was terrible it wouldn’t be reviewed, but the staff writers would openly tell you that they couldn’t be bothered wasting pages on it. Same too, if a game wasn’t supplied by the company for review, it wouldn’t be reviewed! With this level of honesty it’s hardly a surprise that Amstrad Action maintained such a close connection to its readers. While not the first, it was one of the earliest magazines to feature a covertape that contained software and games. In Australia, after interest in the computer had died, Amstrad Action was the only way you could get software for your CPC. Well, you could import it from the UK, but as a 12 year old boy I couldn’t afford to do that. My first issue of the magazine featured “Pang” on the cover, and had a demo of “Switchblade”, and the full game of “Future Knight” by Gremlin Graphics. I was excited and I read that magazine cover to cover several times until the next issue came out. Amstrad Action was the magazine that made me want to get into video game journalism. The longest serving editor, Rod Lawton, was the man who made me want to write about games and I would love to interview him about his time with the magazine. During his editorial reign the

magazine became more witty, sarcastic and funny. Rod set the pace for the future of Amstrad Action and left as support for the computer was dying. In its last 2 years, with staff and editors coming and going, the writing was on the wall. Though next month’s mag was advertised in the final issue it never saw the light of day. The plug was pulled as the once mighty magazine that founded a media empire was reduced to the size of a leaflet. In 2008 a tribute magazine was released (and can still be purchased through by a team of writers headed by Amstrad fan Neil Reive. A letter from yours truly features in the tribute mag, so while my childhood dream to write for Amstrad Action never came to pass, a small piece of my writing did sort of make its way in there.

WRITTEN BY paul monopoli


being a wise So you want to start collecting? Maybe it’s rare games or consoles..? Maybe Trading Cards. There’s a few tips to ensure you’re a wise collector that won’t get suckered into spending more then you should or end up buying a fake. First up you might want to choose what you want to collect. It should be based on something your passionate about. If you’re not into Pokemon, you won’t be excited about collecting rare cards so choose something that excites you. Next make a list of things that are considered collectable in your area of interest. Let’s say you’re looking at collecting rare video games. You’ll find that some are going to be extremely difficult to find and if you do come across one, it’s going to cost you. For example, Stadium Events on the NES which was released in 1987 is pretty rare because the original game was released by Bandai but then Nintendo bought the rights to the game and re-released it as World Class Track Meet. So the big N pulled all the Bandai versions from the shelf and had them destroyed (so the story goes) but approximately 200 cart were sold.. just 200. So now it’s a collectors item. The value of this rarity is between $13,00 and over $40,000! That might not be the first game you go hunting for. Start with things that you can afford to collect - set a budget. Make a list of items - doing your research online is a great place to start

but like any research get confirmation from different sources. Don’t just take one blog’s word that something is rare. Check and double check the facts. Here’s a tip - when double checking facts, check the source. You might find that a two or three different sites will report that something is rare, but digging deeper they might all in fact be quoting the same original source. So while you have “three” sources, you do only have one on three different sites. Be careful.

So you’ve made a list and set a budget. Next find out as much as you can about fakes. You don’t want to get caught buying a fake - this is common in trading cards. Again there are excellent online resources to help you spot fakes. Learn what the real item looks like, do your research so you know what to look out for. If you’re buying a “signed copy” make sure the signature is real. This can be a bit harder to authenticate. On Ebay, you’ll often see real collectors selling items and authenticating them by posing a photo of the item being signed. Still, it’s wise to dig deeper and check their Ebay rating. Type the seller’s name into Google and see if they have negative comments on collector forums. Here’s a tip - you can’t ever do enough research. The more you research, the more you become the expert and the less likely you get ripped off. Form friendships with genuine collectors and dealers.

Don’t get caught buying a “bargain”. If something is way less then the value then there’s likely a problem. There may be damage and so you might see the item for half price, but be warned you might buy a dud that no one ever wants.

Look after your collection. Consider displaying them in glass cabinets to protect them. The last thing you want is your cat knocking that rare console over and breaking it. If it’s something that’s really rare you might want to store it in a fire proof safe or off site in a safety deposit box. Also look into insurance for your items. Imagine a $10,000 collection being stolen or going up in smoke. Call your house insurance if you have valuables and get them insured. Most of all have fun, collecting is a great hobby and can be extremely rewarding.

se collector

board games There have been many versions of stock buying and selling board games over the years. Some are confusing, some can be difficult for players as they require large amounts of math skills and some are simply easy and fun and this is where Stockpile comes in. Played over a predetermined number of rounds based on how many people are playing the game, players must decide what to buy, when to sell and how to take advantage of the inside and common knowledge that affect the prices at the end of each round. Stockpile is fast paced, easy to learn and a whole fun to play. In Stockpile the board is set out with six different companies whose stock price starts at 5 but will rise and fall depending on the common knowledge set out at the start of the round and inside information each player reveals at the end of each round. The first section in each round is the Information Phase. Each player is dealt one Company Card and one Forecast card. The company cards reflect the 6 companies on the board and the forecast cards will either feature a number with a drop or gain. This shows each individual player what is going to change with that company at the end of the round. Players view these cards but leave them face down as these hidden cards are known as the Inside Information. The hidden information supplied to each player at the start of each round is like a little glimpse into the future allowing you to strategically place the cards you are dealt in the Supply Phase. The Supply Phase is the second section of the round and this begins by flipping one card from the market deck face up to start building. Stockpiles are formed under the calculators at the bottom of the board with the amount of stockpiles being created equal to the number of players. Play-

STOCKPILE BOARD GAME review ers then receive two cards from the Market deck, keeping them separate to other cards they have obtained in the game. In turn order players place one of the cards face up on a Stockpile and one facedown and this is where strategic play can come into the game.

Knowing the inside information can help decide which card is played up and which is played face down. Once all players have added their cards to the stockpile the third section begins, The Demand Phase. In the Demand Phase players place their bids for the stockpiles created. Players who strategically placed their cards in the Supply Section based on their Inside Information can make a lot of money if they win the pile for a low bid. This allows players to use their powers of deduction to better their odds in securing the pile of cards which will yield the most amount of money when sold. Once all stockpiles are sold the fourth phase, the Action Phase begins. Any players who received a Stock Boom or Stock Bust card chooses a company and adjusts the price accordingly. Next up is the Selling Phase. The selling Phase allows players in turn order to sell any number of stocks they have obtained. Players place the cards in the discard pile and collect the money from the bank equal to the stock’s current value. Lastly we have the movement phase. Again in turn order players reveal their hidden information and move

the company’s stock up or down depending on the cards. At the end of the pre-determined rounds the player who made the most money from the stocks is the winner.

When I first took a gander at the back of the Stockpiles box I was quite concerned about how hard the game looked to play. The picture is quite daunting as it shows many different cards and tokens used across the board however the game was very easy to pick up. As we had four people playing the 5 rounds of play was pre-determined and by the end of the first round all players had a firm understanding of the rules and the order in which the game is played. The rule book is well put together and features only a couple of double sided pages explaining all sections of play however this was enough to understand all aspects of play. The box and all contents are very well made with everything looking polished. Stockpile is a great stock game without the hassle of working out any equations to determine any of the moves or outcomes. What makes it such a great game is due to it being able to be enjoyed even by those who do not have any idea on the Stock Exchange. The inside trader knowledge really lifts the game and adds an added level of competitiveness. Easy to learn, fun to play and perfectly competitive makes stockpile a worthy addition to any board game collection.



WRITTEN BY jess wilson


sword art online ii

Sword art online is probably one of the most known Anime out there. It has a darling storyline that has romance that can only be countered by its amazing action sequences. Based in a video game, lots of people can relate to the problems that arise with the characters such as relationships and hardships of levels. It has determined characters that create their own futures with their levels and skills. In the second season of this dynamic anime, it follows Kazuto (Kirito) looking into deaths in Gun Gale Online (GGO), another VRMMO from the Amusphere. Following both Kirito and Sinon in this greasy and gun-smoke filled game, they unfold the mystery behind the recurring deaths. Story: A year has passed since SAO was cleared. Summoned by Seijirou Kikuoka of the Virtual Division at the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, Kazuto (Kirito) learns of a series of bizarre murders linked to the popular VR game, Gun Gale Online (GGO). After being shot in-game by a player calling himself Death Gun, two prominent GGO players have mysteriously turned up dead in the real world. As Kazuto logs into GGO and starts investigating the mystery, he meets a girl sniper named Sinon who wields a Hecate II Rifle. Is she friend or foe? Kirito enters the virtual world once more for an all new adventure. The episodes that I watched for season two hold no story (episodes 1-7) because it only shows what is

going happen and Kirito only just enters into the game at episode 4. While the starting of this anime is extremely slow, it picks up quite quickly from episode 4 onwards. You need to watch both seasons in order to fully get the entire anime, but it is still enjoyable if you are just and action junkie. With romance behind corners and action shooting over the top, there are all bases covered in this anime to win a high score from me.

Art: [9/10] The art in this anime is outstanding. From the realism of the weapons to the movements with those weapons, it all looks amazing on screen. All of the characters look their age, making this anime even easier to relate too.

Character: [10/10] With a healthy amount of comedy, a dangerous sense of commitment and a wholesome dose of bravery, the characters just keep building themselves up with the help of others around them. We get enough backstory to feel connected with the characters, but not all of the back-story

to keep some speculation on what a character might do in his/her future. I have always loved the characters from this anime because none of them are ‘generic’ anime characters.

Audio: [10/10] The audio was spectacular. From the dropping of a fork to the slide of a bolt, the sounds are just amazing. The audio is what makes this anime special when it comes to fighting. The audio developers of SAO have my applause for not skipping over any effects of the carnage.

Overall: [10/10] I absolutely loved this anime when I first saw it, and I still do to this day. With amazing characters and even better landscapes to view upon, it just is the complete package from romance to action, fantasy to spiceof-life. I would recommend this anime to anyone wanting something to watch.

WRITTEN BY Jesse Richardson


horrible comics Horror has always been a genre near and dear to my heart. I did my thesis on horror films, so I like to think I know a reasonable amount about the genre. Horror comics on the other hand are something I didn’t discover till I was much older. I was content for most of my life to read super-hero comics and never really look beyond that genre. But as you get older you realise that comic books have so much more to offer than just flying people in tights, they can also scare the living hell out of you! Today we will take a look at a few of my favourite horror comics and what makes them so damn scary!


I’ve mentioned this one a few times now, but if you want a scary comic, it has to be Crossed! Crossed was first created in 2008 by comics legend Garth Ennis, about a horrible plague that transformed people into sadomasochistic monsters, happy to rape, torture, kill and eat anyone they came across, and not always in that order... The comic is simply horrific and only for those with the strongest of stomachs. If you put the truly nightmarish stuff of Crossed to the side, what you will find is a deep, intellectual story. Something that could only come from a writer as good as Garth Ennis. It tells a tale, not unlike The Walking Dead of a group of survivors trying to keep themselves together in a world gone mad. They witness acts beyond evil and still keep fighting to stay sane and stay alive. Ultimately Crossed might be the most intense comic ever written

and it is only for die hards of the horror genre. But if you love a gorefest it is certainly the comic book for you!

The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead has grown from a small time comic to an international phenomenon. With the help of a hit TV show The Walking Dead and its spin off Fear The Walking Dead, the franchise has grown to become one of the biggest comics on the planet. The comic has a simple of survivors dealing with a zombie apocalypse. Created in 2003 by Robert Kirkman and Tony Moore the series has achieved an almost comic book royalty following in it’s short run. Personally I don’t really get the hype. It’s not quite as well written as Crossed nor does it have the full tilt horror impact. I also find that once Tony Moore left the book the art was never quite as good. But that is all my opinion, an opinion that is certainly in the minority. There is no denying that The Walking Dead has become bigger than it’s simple origins. I am happy to consider it an important part of comic book history. It is probably the biggest independent comic book hit ever, that alone makes it important! It serves up some gore and scares, compared to Crossed it seems like a children’s book, but it has enough to satisfy horror lovers.

The Darkness

The Darkness is a fantastic comic that blends the horror genre with the superhero genre. It tells the story of a young mobster named Jackie Estacado who on his twenty-first birthday inherits a dark power known as ‘The Darkness’ it gives him super-

human powers and abilities. Jackie becomes a monster capable of great and evil things. He continues walking a fine line between good and evil. The comic is great as a genre mashup and an interesting character study of it’s tormented lead character. The comic was also the basis of the hit video game of the same name. The video game was more of a re-telling of the 2004 reboot. It removed some of the more super-hero aspects such as his suit and mask but was still a great experience and is a must play for anyone who read the comics, as is the comic a good read for anyone who played the game.

Army Of Darkness

The wildly successful Army Of Darkness comics continue the adventures of Ashley Williams the hero of the Evil Dead film saga. Ash continues his fight against the Deadites in different times and places. Army of Darkness continues the great horror themes present in Evil Dead and brings the humour of Army of Darkness to create a truly unique series that has stood the test of time. Any fan of horror cinema is a fan of the Evil Dead films and the comic advances the established story pushing it to new heights. Just last year the story “Ash Saves Obama” was published, featuring Ash saving the president of the US from a Deadite threat. It’s delightful little touches like this that keep the Army of Darkness comics in wide popularity and make it a truly fun read. People will always have a fascination with horror. It’s a safe way to experience fear and death knowing that

the threat can never hurt you. While people love to be scared there will always be a market for horror comics. I have only touched on the surface here, there are so many other great titles out there. Locke and Key, Winter City, Left Hand Path, 30 Days

of Night, Marvel Zombies, Swamp Thing, From Hell, just to name a few. I just talked today about a few of my favourites, but if you have a thirst for blood and a love of nightmares, there are plenty of comics out there for you to explore! Have a scare!

Images from Wikipedia. Bottom left: Comic book creator Robert Kirkman signing books and memorabilia for fans at the 2011 w:New York Comic Con, October 14, 2011. This photo was created by Luigi Novi.

WRITTEN BY scott f. sowter

Reader tips



We love when readers write to us with cool stuff they’ve done. Recently we got a letter from Ty Hanson who did a little DIY project of his own… I took a cheeky trip to my local Bunnings Warehouse and purchased a light housing, this one had a spiral design which I felt looked really awesome for a spirit bomb! Now when wiring your own electrical’s, a qualified electrician is required / strongly suggested. I do not posses such talents so I had to find a different way. The light housing did not come with a way to fix it to the wall, this is because such housings also require a legit light bulb housing in order to do so (the white plasticy thing that you plug the actual bulb into) So next (and still in Bunnings), I grabbed a legit light bulb housing and threw away the innards. This gave me a fixture to attach to the wall but no way to keep said fixture

to attached to the housing itself (the innards with all the electrical stuff had that but was preventing any other wiring from running through). So I went into the plumbing department and picked up some threaded PVC and they fit perfectly with the bulb housing. Putting these pieces all together I now had a way to run my own LED wiring through a bulb setting and was able to be fixed to the wall. I grabbed a pack of LED’s and ran them through the hollow innards and concealed my wiring underneath the shelving. I now had a functioning Spirit Bomb..... I grabbed my Goku figure and a clear Figma stand, drilled a small hole in the back of Goku, secured it and glued it in place. I also had a few spare effect parts which I then secured around Goku’s legs. I then attached the other end of the stand to the underneath of the light fixture and BAM! Job was done!

WRITTEN BY ty hanson



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MTG: BATTLE FOR ZENDIKAR The release date for the newest Magic set, Battle for Zendikar is the 2nd of October. This promises to be huge with the design team (from Wizards website) being: Initial Concept and Game Design: Mark Rosewater (lead) Ian Duke Dan Emmons Ethan Fleischer Dave Guskin Ari Levitch Final Game Design & Development: Erik Lauer (lead) Tim Aten Kelly Digges Ian Duke Ben Hayes Shawn Main Yoni Skolnik with contributions from Matt Tabak. The set consists of 274 cards based around the return to the plane of Zendikar, a wild place with unsta-

ble weather, floating terrain and wild mana. Zendikar is both beautiful and dangerous that is affected by volatile seismic movements - the Roil The plane’s inhabitants stand against the monstrous Eldrazi that wants to destroy the world.

According to Wizards, certain packs will include very rare versions of the iconic lands in the history of Magic. These cards are called Zendikar Expeditions and will be both premium foil and full art printed in English. There are 8 of these to be found in Battle for Zendikar packs. Head into your Gametraders store to order and for more information visit Wizards site and check out the awesome trailer here:

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VICTORIA BACCHUS MARSH October 2nd - 4th MTG Battle for Zendikar Launch Weekend October 25th - MTG Game Day Battle for Zendikar Magic the Gathering Draft - Friday 5:30pm Magic the Gathering Standard Constructed - Sunday 12pm Board Games and Magic Modern Constructed - Wednesday 5:30pm

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GAMETRADERS LIVE MILDURA October 2nd - 4th MTG Battle for Zendikar Launch Weekend October 25th - MTG Game Day Battle for Zendikar PokĂŠmon League - Wednesday 4.30 - 6.30pm We also run: Pokemon both TCG & VG, MTG FNM, MTG Constructed Tournaments, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Star Wars X-Wing, Warhammer 40k, Cardfight!! Vanguard, Mario Kart 8, Super Smash Bros & Ultra Street Fighter IV Tournaments, plus heaps more. For event details and times, please check:


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GAMETRADERS LIVE HORNSBY Yu-Gi-Oh - Sunday 12:30pm Pokémon - Sunday 2pm Magic the Gathering - Friday 6pm Magic EDH/Commander - Sunday 2pm Board Games/Role Playing & Tabletop - Wednesday & Thursday 6pm Retro - Saturday (check FB for times) All other systems - Casual Play Saturdays


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MARION Pokémon - Please call the store for details. (08 8296 1144) Cardfight!! Vanguard - Tuesday 6pm Yu-Gi-Oh - Wednesday 6pm Magic the Gathering - Friday 6pm

SEAFORD October 2nd MTG Battle for Zendikar Launch Weekend Yu-Gi-Oh - Thursday 6pm (5:30pm registration) Cardfight!! Vanguard - Friday 4:30pm Magic the Gathering - Monday 6pm (5:30pm reg) & Friday 6pm (5:30pm reg) Pokémon - Sunday 1pm (12:30 registration) My Little Pony - Tuesday 5pm (4:30pm registration) Future Card Buddyfight - Thursday 5:30pm Board Game Nights - Wednesdays from 5-8pm

MT. BARKER October 4th MTG Battle for Zendikar Release Draft Board Game Night - Thursday 6pm Yu-Gi-Oh - Saturday 4pm Magic the Gathering - Sunday 1pm

SALISBURY Magic the Gathering - Thursday 5:30pm & Saturday 11am Yu-Gi-Oh (Advanced Format) - Saturday 12.30pm


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is the chillingly brilliant and terrifyingly real story of Extreme Metal band, Dethklok: the biggest entertainment act in the universe. Perhaps one of the most disgusting and disturbing pieces of art in the 21st century, METALOCALYPSE may be the most important television show ever offering a blistering critique of fascism and idealism that suggests moral redemption; it is not unlike the Nordic gods to whom we once prayed. Dethklok is truly the world’s greatest cultural force. Their music rivals the discovery of medicine.




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Horror master, Mike Rollerson shares his ideas and tips on doing horror cosplay photography. It’s that ghoulish month of months, October. And that means Halloween is coming. Kids and adults will be out there in costumes having fun and scaring the daylights out of people all in good fun. Cosplay and Halloween are a great mix with some amazing costumes such as Fredddy, Zombie Nurses, Elvira and many others. But if you’re wanting to see amazing horror cosplay look no further then the master, Mike Rollerson from San Diego. We caught up with Mike just in time for Halloween... Hey Mike we’d like to share some tips and ideas on horror photography, can we start with working on the concept. Working on a concept between a model/cosplayer and photographer is the perfect opportunity to share ideas - figuring out the theme, outfit/ makeup, poses, lighting and visualizing what the final shot will look like in advance gives both sides some creative input that can really put the shot over the top; something like color choices of an outfit, the way the shot is lit or the angle it’s taken at can make some incredible differences.

Brainstorming ideas in advance of shots you’re wanting to achieve will make the shooting process go much smoother, even if it doesn’t end up being the final result it will often give you some great starting points to adjust during the shoot in order to create a great finished photo. Having some input from both sides will also ensure a great shooting experience where both the model and photographer are excited for the shoot - if either side is not fully committed to the idea, it can really show in the end results. And while gear isn’t important, we’d like to know what you use and why? Camera-wise, I use a mix of Canon mirrorless and DSLR bodies. I prefer shooting with multiple bodies/lenses at the same time in order to dramatically change the look (going from a fish-eye, to an ultra-wide, a portrait and a telephoto lens) without pausing a shoot to change lenses. Using multiple camera bodies makes the change in lenses seamless and also encourages using them all during the shoot. Some of my favorite lenses for the horror-look are an 8mm Fisheye lens, an ultra-wide (10-22mm), standard & portrait (30mm/50mm/85mm) or a telephoto (70-200mm). I tend to have one lens from each group on-the-ready at all

times to get the proper angle and depth of field needed for the shot. In nearly all of my photoshoots I prefer to use speedlights - they’re extremely portable and have a large range of modifiers available. Using a griddedsoftbox will help create a dark look with a strong falloff of light, perfect for a horror-themed cosplay. Ok, onto the shoot itself. Obviously make up is really important for horror, tell us about what happens.

With so much variety in effects makeup and techniques available, I’m very open to finding the best fit to make the look as close to our concept as possible. In the past I would bring in a makeup artist, some models are also familiar with different application techniques, but recently I’ve become much more involved in the process in order to create the look that I feel photographs best (some makeup applications will look fantastic in person but not necessarily translate in photos under different types of lighting). Over the last few years I’ve picked up techniques for airbrushing (which types hold up best for a shoot? which will display best under flash lighting?), fake bloods (using nearly a dozen different types ranging from a very thin “Squirt Blood” to a thick pastelike “Thick Blood”, coming in colors

Cosplayer: Raychul Moore |


the master of horror photography mike rollerson

from light to dark red, black and even green). I’m happy with where I am in applying effects makeups, but I’m always trying new techniques and new products! So we’ve got the concept, the gear, the make up, tell us about posing. Poses can really make or break a horror-shoot. For static-poses, something as simple as tilting the head downwards and looking up with their eyes, tilting their head to one side or looking off into the distance can create a much scarier look than facing straight-on at the camera. Lightly clenching a fist can give a much stronger look than a hand relaxing by the models side. Ground-level/crawling shots often work perfect as they’re something you don’t see much of in other areas of photography. Some of my favorite looks are the action poses; Having a model jump into an action pose, spin their body around or “claw” towards the camera quickly will create a moment that looks better than any posed “action” shot will - you get an intense reaction and a real sense of motion in the shot. Shooting the concept - how long does it take and what’s the process? I always try to have a shoot ready-togo at the time the model arrives. This means putting together any “sets” (if the shoot calls for one), preparing lighting (colored lighting? modifiers?) and any other effects (fog machines, blacklights, neon lights). Whenever shooting in a studio environment, I set up multiple monitors to view the photos live as they’re taken -- this is something I started doing a couple years ago and found that it makes a very big difference during shoots. A model being able to see the shot live

on a bigger screen right after it’s taken helps keep the motivation up during a shoot (being covered in fake blood can be less fun than it sounds :) as well as allowing the model to make any adjustments to their posing. I tend to take multiple shots of the same look -- often 4-5 shots -allowing me to pick between them in post-production, finding the shot from the set that worked best. Often times these shots will look very similar, but the slightest difference in express, focus or timing can make a very noticeable difference! And how does the shoot wrap up? Towards the end of the shoot, I always make sure to double-check with the model to see if they had any other ideas before we finish. I want to make sure that we both end up with some shots that we really enjoy, and sometimes these “Maybe we can try something like this..” poses end up being some of our favorites! It gives an extra opportunity to try out some extra looks (different lighting, posing, effects) at the end of the shoot once we’ve already gotten the look we were going for. After wrapping, I make sure to have a large supply of different makeup removers (with so many types of makeups, having a healthy and functional remover for each will make a big difference in ensuring that it all comes off easily). Tell us a bit on post production of your images. After a shoot I’ll import everything from the day into Lightroom to do a quick run-through of all the shots and rate my favorites (and allow the model to pick any favorites as well, if they’d like). I actually don’t delete photos during the shoot - sometimes a shot where one light didn’t fire will actually work out perfectly when edited properly. I tend to do some basic

editing in Lightroom before moving into Photoshop. Lots of color-grading to set the mood, compositing in elements if needed and creating some effects for the final shot. I know we’ve interviewed you before, but just to finish can you tell our readers a bit about you and where they can see more of your amazing work and of your model Raychul?

Cosplayer: Raychul Moore |

I’ve been shooting cosplay photography for a number of years now, both at conventions as well as setting up private shoots to allow a bit more freedom and creativity with locations. Over the past few years I’ve started to focus more on the horror-themed looks, effects makeup applications and some costume creation. Raychul Moore is always an awesome model and cosplayer to work with -- we originally met at a convention a couple years ago and

have shot multiple times since then (most recently putting together this new horror-look). She always puts together some really fun cosplays, does some fun game streaming and puts out Youtube videos regularly.

“ make or Poses can really


a horror shoot.

- Mike Rollerson


We briefly caught up with our cover cosplayer Raychul Moore. We asked her a few quick questions and we promise a full interview with her next month - so stay tuned! Here’s a teaser... Tell us how you got into cosplay? I’ve been a pretty diehard gamer since I was super little and I think cosplay was just a natural progression for me because of that. I mean, who wouldn’t want to dress up as some of their favorite video game characters?! What are your favourite cosplays? I have a few favorites for different reasons. I adore both of my Cam-

my cosplays just because I love the character so much and I’m pretty deadly in-game when I’m playing as her. :D But I think overall, my Kratos cosplay is one of my all-time favorites just because Kratos is such an awesome character, I love the entire God of War series and when I cosplay as Kratos, it’s one of the only times I get to be a huge, angry, bald demi-god!!! What are your favourite con’s/ events and why? I really have the most fun at the smaller cons because they aren’t over-packed like the San Diego Comic Con-sized cons because I get a lot more freedom to spend time talking to people who come to my

booth and actually chat with them and get to know them. Where can readers go to find out more about you? I’m all over the internets! My homebase is, but you can also find me on Twitter: Facebook: and I do a lot of video game-centered videos on my YouTube: Thanks Raychul! We look forward to our full interview next month.

Raychul Moore


cosplay cover www.FACEBOOK.COM/RaychulMoore

Photographer: Mike Rollerson |

COSPLAY Welcome to Live Magazine Zhiana, how did you get started with cosplay? I’ve always been into dressing up; as a kid you could catch me insisting on wearing my fairy costume to the shops or out to family events. As I grew up, this didn’t change! I joined the Costume Society (CosSoc) at the University of Sydney while I was studying and I was active in the group until I graduated! I didn’t really know about conventions until 2010, when I decided to go to my first Supanova in Sydney as the ‘Witch’ from Left 4 Dead and it all grew from there! What’s been your favourite cosplay you’ve done? This is really tough, but I think my all-time favourite has to be Elizabeth from BioShock Infinite because I adore the character. I actually made that costume around a year before the game was actually released and based it on the concept art – that’s how excited I was to make it! Otherwise, Regina from Once Upon a Time was a blast to wear because we had a whole group costuming together which makes it heaps more fun! In your opinion, what makes a good cosplay costume? For me, it doesn’t matter if you bought or commissioned a costume or if you made it yourself. As long as you have a passion for the character and you’re having fun with it, go for it! And a good cosplayer? The same as above: cosplay stands for “costume play” – so as long as you are having a fun, positive and rewarding experience whilst dressing up; that’s what makes you a


good cosplayer! I think it’s important to have a good attitude, as any costume (no matter how big or small) can be ruined by a bad interaction with someone. Stay positive and have fun! What about photo shoots - have you done many and how does a typical shoot go? I’ve done quite a few! It depends where you’re doing the shoot – for example, for my Cersei Lannister costume I was shooting in a public garden in the middle of summer on the weekend so it was interesting to see the curious looks of the “normal” people trying to have picnics and whatnot around us. Typically if you’re outdoors, you’ll shoot a bunch of different locations/backgrounds to try and make sure you get that perfect shot. Otherwise, if you’re in a studio or indoors (say, at a convention), it’s all about the pose! Make sure you figure out some different poses before you go in front of a camera, it makes all the difference. Practice in front of your mirror at home and see which angle looks the best! What are your cosplay plans for the rest of this year, anything you can share? I’m revamping one of my favourite costumes to wear at my next couple

of events – Elizabeth from BioShock Infinite! Otherwise, I’m thinking about doing Lulu from Final Fantasy X and Snow White from Snow White & The Huntsman. What cons are you attending? I’ll be at the following cons: Games 15 (Dubai), Oz Comic-Con (Sydney), Supanova (Adelaide) and AMC Expo (Melbourne). Anything funny ever happened at a con you can share? I once stole a chip from Luke Perry’s plate at an after party, not realising who he was. He was pretty cool about it! Random celebrity encounters are always the best. Kevin Sorbo complimented me on & took a picture of my Anna (Frozen) costume for his daughter’s benefit - that felt pretty surreal! Ok, 5 quick questions - ready? 1 - Favourite TV show? Stargate SG-1. 2 - Favourite movie? Snatch. 3 - Best food to eat before or after a cosplay event? Pizza. 4 - Finish this sentence, if I could

Photographer: Kris Ezergailis

have coffee with anyone in the world it would be… David Tennant. 5 - You’re taken into space by ET to visit their planet as an ambassador - what cosplay do you dress in? Sailor Jupiter. Finally where can our readers go to find out more about you? & @zhiana on Twitter! I’m permanently attached to social media.

“ Elizabeth from

I think my all-time favourite has to be

BioShock Infinite because I adore the character.

- Zhiana

Photographer: George Wong |


Photographer: George Wong |

Photographer: George Wong |

Photographer: George Wong |

Photographer: Angelo Beltran |

COSPLAY Welcome to Live Magazine Car! Firstly, tell us abit about yourself... So, a little bit about me. I am a part time student studying Psych, and I work for EB Games. I am an Australian PC Gamer and cosplayer in my spare time! Not only do I cosplay, but I like to write music, I enjoy playing a my Ukulele, Guitars, Piano and I also like to sing. I’ve been a creative person ever since I was little, and creativity is also a great stress release for me as well! How did you get into cosplay? Ever since I was little I have loved dressing up, as every kid does, but I was a little bit different. Instead of being a pretty princess or Tinkerbell I would want to be Batman, or Spiderman, and I still have my Batman costume to this day! I seriously loved getting all dressed up and having fun, and then I hit primary school where it wasn’t seen as socially acceptable, so that’s when my creativity branched into other domains. I started drawing and creative visual art from a very young age. Over my schooling life I developed my skills in a few different domains such as sewing, sketching, moulding etc. It was only in late 2013 early 2014 when I discovered what cosplay was. I started gaming heavily in 2012 (influenced by my boyfriend), prominently playing League of Legends. I absolutely fell in love with these character designs, and when drawing them just wasn’t enough creative output for me, I decided to take the next step and started to build them. I don’t think there is anything much cooler than being able to completely transform yourself into a game character and to bring them to life. What is your favourite type of cosplay?

blondiee cosplay

www.FACEBOOK.COM/blondiee99gaming I would have to say at the moment, my favourite type of cosplay would have to be League or Blizzard characters. Their models KICK ASS! Heavily armoured badassery is the look I tend to go for, but I have been trying to mix up my cosplays and have a few “girly” ones in there as well, just to show some variety. What do you like most about cosplaying? For me, it’s not so much about wearing the cosplay, but the process of making it is absolutely amazing. Being able to have a creative outlet that makes someone look totally kick ass is just the raddest thing ever. Don’t get me wrong though, I absolutely love shooting my cosplays, and not just still images but videos as well, the theatrics behind the character and bringing them to life is what I love to do! And the absolutely incredible people you meet along your cosplay journey is awesome as well. There are hundreds of people out there that have the same passion you do, and the network of people can be just amazing. Life long friendships have been made through cosplay!

What materials do you like to use? I started out using foam. Just plain old EVA foam from bunnings, and let me tell you it is the best thing on this planet. It is super cheap, and super easy to work with! I have delved into the world of worbla, and don’t get me wrong it is incredible stuff (awesome for making super strong breastplates) but it is a little more expensive and can be a bit tricky to use. In terms of adhesives, I prefer to use contact cement, super glue, and hot glue depending on what base materials or parts I’m working on. What cosplays would you like to do in the future? At the moment I have a female Vegeta (DBZ) and Snow Bunny Nidalee (League of Legends) in the works for some upcoming events in Sydney, but I have a huge list that doubles in size every time I hop on the internet. In the near future I would like to complete by Winter Sonja cosplay, Armoured Vaporeon, Harley Quinn, and Pin up Black Canary. In the very distant future when I’ve honed my skills I would love to do Nova and

Photographer: Lorenzo So Photography |

Photographer: Lorenzo So Photography |

Photographer: Lorenzo So Photography |

Zerg Kerrigan from StarCraft, and the ranger Sylvanas skin from Heros of the Storm. Finally, where can our readers go to find out more about you? You can find me on: @blondieegaming on Instagram, and

“ absolutely amazing. For me, it’s not so much about wearing the cosplay, but the process of making it is

- Blondiee Cosplay

Blondiee Cosplay

Photographer: Lorenzo So Photography |

Photographer: Carlos Mayenco |

Photographer: Pixels of Shae | Tails made by: Ankle Shatterer Cosplay |




WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/ ferretcosplay

Since Halloween is approaching, I thought it’d be appropriate to talk about my new love, the interactive horror game Until Dawn. With beautiful next-gen console graphics and stunning gameplay design, this PS4 exclusive follows the story of eight friends trapped together on a remote mountain retreat gone wrong, when they start to suspect they aren’t alone. The game runs on a ‘Butterfly Effect’ system, where it tracks the actions you take throughout the game, playing as all eight characters, which can cause unforeseen consequences later on in the game. It’s possible for all eight characters to live to the end – and for all eight to die. The game is focused on exploration and discovering clues rather than jump-scares, which for a weenie like myself is refreshing. I usually dislike most horror games for their reliance on jump-scares and startling reveals, but the storyline and characters draw me in to Until Dawn. I was originally introduced to the game when a few friends of mine streamed it, so more friends could listen in and lend a view – while it could be played alone, the multiple Let’s Plays that have appeared of it show it’s a game that’s enjoyable to a group too. It’s a fantastic game that doesn’t really have a comparison at the moment, so if you too are a weenie around horror games but enjoy character dynamics and good storyline, give it a try – particularly with a few

weenie friends if you can! Since this game has been so amazing, I’ve been itching at the bit to cosplay from it. I decided to cosplay Ashley, the academic and inquisitive protagonist whom I developed a soft spot for throughout the game. Firstly, I did my face up as I usually would for a day out, giving special attention to match the thick eyeliner around the eye as Ashley wears and remembering to apply face cream before I start – as Ashley starts the game with normal make-up on before the events cause the gore and dirt on her face to be placed there, I thought it would be good to start with the same sort of base. Next, grabbed a make-up sponge, such as your could get in bulk at your local drugstore, and ripped little pieces out of the end to create an uneven base. This meant when I later used it to apply face-paint, it created an uneven, stippled effect, which looked more realistic. Make sure the chunks you pull out are differing in size and shape to keep this look. I used brown, white, light grey, and dark grey face-paint to paint dirt onto my face. The brand I used was water-based Snazaroo, which you can get easily online or at your local Lincraft. Before you use any paint on your face, please test it on your arm or wrist first to see if you’re going to react – you don’t want to find

out halfway through the event you’re allergic! Water-based face paint can dry out your skin, so I wouldn’t recommend it for long wears or for anyone with sensitive skin. While I used face-paint, this effect is also easily achievable with bronzer and eye-shadows of similar colours layered onto each other. I added these to the top of my paint in dabs to create even more of a layered affect. If you put too much on, just use make up remover in dabs to reduce the intensity of your colours and make it more patchy. At this point I also used black and brown eye-shadow to smear the eyeliner I was wearing, as if I’d be wearing it for a long and stressful time. No time to look pretty and wellkept when you’re in danger of your life! Now time for the fake blood. There are thousands of recipes online you can look at if you’re searching for a particular result, but my personal favourite is golden syrup mixed with red and blue food colouring. This particular recipe is edible and easy to make, but extremely sticky and if you are using a wig will most likely get all through it. I personally haven’t had it stain anything, but it is food colouring and staining is a risk you take while using this. This is not a con safe recipe. It goes without saying you should never attend a con wearing something that can get on

“Now time for the fake blood... my personal favourite is golden syrup mixed with red and blue food colouring.”

“...I also used black and brown eye-shadow to smear the eyeliner I was wearing.”

Promotional Image: Ashley from Until Dawn

others, so remember this recipe is only for parties or photoshoots. I would definitely recommend a squeeze bottle if you’re buying golden syrup as well, because it’s a very thick and sticky consistency and easier to handle without actually handling it. Adding two drops of red food colouring to ever 300mL is a good rule to go by, and add as much blue food colouring as you want to give it a

more old blood feeling rather than the bright red it will be without. Since what is on Ashley’s face is more gore than blood, I personally added a bit of hot chocolate powder and Milo to my mix to give it a bit of chunkiness and depth. Using the same sponge I used to apply my paint, I first used the dechunked end to lightly tap the surface of my face blood, and then as I did with the paint, stipple it onto my right cheek. This gave my dirt more

depth as well as reflecting Ashley in-game. Next is the tricky part, and the moment where your wig is going to receive some sticky attention if you’re not careful. Still using the de-chunked end, I lightly stippled the general area I wanted to put my blood as a guide – since the blood I later add is thicker and darker, this also adds more depth to the gore. The sponge I used was triangular, so I simply turned it around

and used the thin end to streak the blood in ‘splashes’ in the direction the spray of gore had come from to where it was going – first on my face, then my neck. When I had these splash down pat, I used a corner to add a few spots and dots for wider blood splatter. It was then a simple matter of adding looking at my full face and adding more streaks where I thought I needed them, and adding more blood to sections to add depth.

And that’s how I made myself look like I’d been caught in a horror game! I hope this guide can help you with your costumes and if you need any clarification or have any suggestions on what I can make and talk about next month, let me know on any of my social media accounts on Instagram or Twitter (@ferret_soup) or my Facebook page, Ferret Cosplay. Chat to you soon! -Chatty Anny

WRITTEN BY anny sims

COSPLAY TUTORIAL Wigs can be a frustrating endeavour to understand for a first-time cosplayer. Where do you get them? How much is too much to pay? What’s the difference between that $55 wig from a wig website, and this $30 one that seems exactly the same from eBay. com? Here are 5 tips on purchasing a wig that will suit you.

1. Wigs generally look better than real hair Wigs are usually a lot better for your cosplay than your real hair. Not only do wigs look fuller, photograph better and hold style for much longer, you can severely damage your hair from constant colour and style changes to fit your character. While for some more ‘realistic’ characters this can be a benefit – think Ellie from the Last of Us or Beth Greene from The Walking Dead – it usually makes your costume look unpolished and be a weak link what would otherwise be an amazing look.

2. You will pay for quality While that $20 eBay wig looks very tempting, in cosplay you usually pay for quality. Wig stores online charge more because they guarantee their products are going to be of higher quality, which usually means less shiny, thicker, less sparse (meaning no wig caps peaking out underneath) and often a more diverse colour, with a few different coloured fibres in the wig making it look more natural. Good places I’d recommend buying from would be:,, or

3. Do your research Before you put money towards anything, research both your character and the wigs you are interested well.

WIGS! WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/ ferretcosplay

Compiling a folder of shots of your character from different angles and in different lighting could really help you out when picking a wig style and colour. Places like Arda Wigs have a large range of colours and styles, and display their wig colours in various lighting to get a full range of ideas. Always remember buying online is a risk with colours and styles, but within Australia it’s usually the best way to purchase wigs.

4. Pick a colour and style that will suit you The character you’re cosplaying might be able to pull off neon yellow hair, but it might not suit you. Accuracy is fantastic, but be aware that you want to wear your costume, not have it wear you. Picking a more blue-based or red-based shade on your skin tone might suit you more. For example while wearing Yang Xiao Long from RWBY, I opted for a yellow-blonde wig from Wigsupplier. com rather than the more accurate mustard-yellow. I personally look like a tomato in mustard yellow, so I knew a more natural blonde would suit me better. Go with whatever you feel is best – it’s all up to artistic interpretation, and this is by no means a rule you have to follow.

5. Wig styles are changeable

If you purchase a wig of high enough quality, it’s fairly easily to change its style. A curly wig is easily straightened, and a straight wig can be curled (only if your wig is heat resistant, so be careful!). You can cut a longer wig up shorter as well, or add wefts to add length to your wig. Wig styling is a creative element of it’s own, and the only limits are you imagination – don’t be afraid to try new things to get that exact wig you want! Free online art available by Rooster Teeth Productions

Photographer: cru Photography |

WRITTEN BY anny sims


5 Beginner mistakes to avoid when taking cosplay photos.

The fun thing about cosplay photography is that you have a great subject to photograph. That’s a great start to any photo session. So how do we avoid simple mistakes to ensure your subject is photographed in a way that compliments their cosplay? Let’s take a look at 5 mistakes you should avoid when doing cosplay photos.

1. Context

So you’ve got an awesome Harley Qunn cosplay going on. But what are you using for a background? Researching the character will give you insights as to what will work and what won’t. A poor background can spoil your photo. So do your homework, check out what backgrounds the character suits, then do some background scouting. Take a walk or drive in your area and make notes on places you think will work as a good background. Remember to be safe - don’t take risks and don’t shoot in areas that are dangerous.

2. Bad shadows equals bad photos One of the most common mistakes people make when taking a photo of someone is either putting them in harsh sunlight or in dappled light. Harsh sunlight means your subject will squint and have harsh shadows on their face that might not suit the style of the cosplay. Better to shoot in even shadowed area or later in the afternoon (or early morning) when the light is softer and even. Look for locations that give you lovely even light. If shooting in dark shadows, consider adding some light to your photo - but light you control like flash or continuous light such as an LED photo light. If you’re outside and can’t find an even shadowed area, simply turn your subject to face away from the sun and you’re lighting will improve but be aware of snuffler.

3.Don’t let things grow out of your subjects head! It’s exciting to photograph cosplay. But sometimes we are so caught up in the moment we forget to take a deep breath and analyse the scene. Look behind your subject and make sure there is no branches or poles behind him or her resulting in the illusion that they’ve got something growing out of their head. Move either them or yourself so you eliminate that problem.

4. Distorted faces! A wide angle lens can distort the body. We often see people with camera phones get up close to a face, snap a photo and distort the subject’s nose. Stand back a bit and get a more natural shot. If using a DSLR or Mirrorless camera use a longer lens at least 50mm and frame your subject. The longer the lens the better your subject will look as a long lens tends to slim down features.

5. Too slow a shutter speed means blur Sometimes we take a photo with our iPhone or Android and find that it looks amazing on the back of the phone but put on your computer screen or larger tablet screen and it looks soft or blurred. The reason for this is either you’ve moved whilst taking the photo or you’ve taken a photo with a slow shutter speed. What your phone will try to do is compensate by raising the ISO - the amount of light it lets on to the sensor but this can result in lot’s of digital noise. On a better camera such as a DSLR etc, higher ISO isn’t always a big problem. But if using a camera phone or more basic camera you might need to either move your subject into a better light area or add flash. Want to improve your cosplay photography? Our Cosplay Live team often works with photo groups to run events and teach cosplayers and photographers how to get better photos. Why not contact us and we can let you know when our next event is on. Email us at:


19 - 20 SEPTEM

Photography by Blake Robertson: The Blake Image


MBER 2015


19 - 20 SEPTEM

Photography by Blake Robertson: The Blake Image


MBER 2015


19 - 20 SEPTEM

Photography by Blake Robertson: The Blake Image


MBER 2015

HOW RATINGS WO The Australian Classification CTC

CTC - Check the classification. The content has been assessed and approved for advertising unclassified films and computer games. Any advertising of unclassified films and games must display the CTC message on posters, trailers, on the internet, and any other types of advertising. G - General. The content is very mild in impact. The G classification is suitable for everyone. G products may contain classifiable elements such as language and themes that are very mild in impact. However, some G-classified films or computer games may contain content that is not of interest to children. PG - Parental Guidance. The content is mild in impact. The impact of PG (Parental Guidance) classified films and computer games should be no higher than mild, but they may contain content that children find confusing or upsetting and may require the guidance of parents and guardians. They may, for example, contain classifiable elements such as language and themes that are mild in impact. It is not recommended for viewing or playing by persons under 15 without guidance from parents or guardians. M - Mature. The content is moderate in impact. Films and computer games classified M (Mature) contain content of a moderate impact and are recommended for teenagers aged 15 years and over. Children under 15 may legally access this material because it is an advisory category. However, M classified films and computer games may include classifiable elements such as violence and nudity of moderate impact that are not recommended for children under 15 years. Parents and guardians may need to find out more about the film or computer game’s specific content, before deciding whether the material is suitable for their child.

ORK: Board

There are two separate Boards that are independent from the government and from each other. There is the full time Classification Board that decides the classifications of films, video games and certain publications and the Classification Review Board that meets only to review a decision of the Classification Board when there is a valid application for review. The Board bases its’ classifications on six elements: Themes, Violence, Sex, Language, Drug Use & Nudity Below are a list of classifications you’ll find on games and movies:

MA 15+ - Mature Accompanied 15+. The content is strong in impact. MA 15+ classified material contains strong content and is legally restricted to persons 15 years and over. It may contain classifiable elements such as sex scenes and drug use that are strong in impact. A person may be asked to show proof of their age before hiring or purchasing an MA 15+ film or computer game. Cinema staff may also request that the person show proof of their age before allowing them to watch an MA 15+ film. Children under the age of 15 may not legally watch, buy or hire MA 15+ classified material unless they are in the company of a parent or adult guardian. Children under 15 who go to the cinema to see an MA 15+ film must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian for the duration of the film. The parent or adult guardian must also purchase the movie ticket for the child. The guardian must be an adult exercising parental control over the person under 15 years of age. The guardian needs to be 18 years or older.

Parents and guardians may need to find out more about the film or computer game’s specific content, before deciding whether the material is suitable for their child. R 18+ - Restricted to 18+. The content is high in impact. R 18+ material is restricted to adults. Such material may contain classifiable elements such as sex scenes and drug use that are high in impact. Some material classified R18+ may be offensive to sections of the adult community. A person may be asked for proof of their age before purchasing, hiring or viewing R18+ films and computer games at a retail store or cinema. There is also an X 18+ for adult films and these titles are only available for sale in the ACT and the Northern Territory. Sometimes games are refused classification. This can cause gamers to be frustrated, citing that the R18+ classification should take care of adult content. But still some games don’t get classified until the publishers/developers have addressed the concerns of the Classification Board.


Want to know more? Visit the Australian Classification website - www.classification.



Gametraders Live Magazine is published monthly and keeps gamers and pop-culture fans up to date with the latest in video games, comics, collectables, anime, manga, retro, and our popular cosplay section. All our game reviews and previews are totally honest, looking at the pros and cons of each game so you can make an informed decision, thanks to the team at Sticky Trigger.


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