But today was the day the habit of checking the Kinokuniya website finally stuck. We'd been checking since Monday, because we decided that, since we were good and went to the dentist, and we ended up not having to pay for a root canal, that we could spare some money on a book that came out on the 25th (which was the 24th here in America). And today was the day that it was finally in stock in some of Kinokuniya's West Coast stores.
Saiyuki Reload 7♥!!!
Eheh. So I like to be dramatic. I had almost forgotten why we kept checking the Kinokuniya website until I realized they actually had it today. And suddenly the day was a whole lot better.
Then it was time to decide on one other book to get, because $5 shipping doesn't quite justify one book. Or rather, it didn't justify one book when we bought DN Angel last year, which costs only a little more than half as much as Saiyuki, but we figured it would be okay anyway. We could call it our annual Kinokuniya Order. That's actually rather depressing. Never mind.
It was mostly a toss up between Lagoon Engine, as we are self-proclaimed Yukiru Sugisaki experts, and volume 5 has been out for at least a month now and we don't even have our own copy of volume 4, and Host Club, because it's Host Club. Really the only reason we hesitated about Host Club is that we both love it too much to take turns reading it, so we would want to work together translating it, because that way we're reading it at the same time. But there's already a translation of it out, so it seems kind of silly.
So today we decided we don't care, and bought the first two volumes. Maybe we shouldn't have splurged too much, but we very thankfully have a cooling trend coming up and aren't using our air conditioning. And soon we'll have Host Club manga!! And Saiyuki Reload 7!!! We finally get proof that what we were lead to believe happened at the end of volume 6 wasn't as serious as it looked! We hope. Eheh.
But then we ended up not being able to see Cars. We're going to try again tomorrow, so hopefully it'll all be good, but that upset me a lot more than it should have. Especially when we're expecting more Saiyuki and Host Club manga. Not sure what we'll end up doing about Lagoon Engine, though. We'll work it out eventually.
We had a really hard time deciding whether we should go to the Land of the Dragons or Beast's Castle first. When we played through the first time, we decided to go to Land of the Dragons, because the battle level was lower, and it just makes more sense to do easier worlds first. But then we got the soundtrack, and the music for Beast's Castle comes first, so we were very confused.
We thought maybe the LoD battle level was lower because we went that way on the Gummi Ship first, so we reset the game and tried heading toward Beast's Castle first, but there was no change. So we reset it again, for consistency, and went to LoD.
Gummi missions are one of the awesomest new things they added to Kingdom Hearts II. We've heard people complain about hating the Gummi Ship stuff in the first Kingdom Hearts, and I hope they were satisfied with the new setup, because it's totally awesome. And Athena says it's nice to get all the Gummi treasures in Gummi missions, because then you don't have treasure boxes going unopened for eternity because you already have as many thunder Gummis as you can carry.
Anyway, in the Land of Dragons, we saw Mushu and it confirmed my theory that all of Roxas's dreams were, "Previously, on Kingdom Hearts..." to point out all the stuff that would be significant in this game. We almost never summoned Mushu in KH1, so it would have taken me a lot longer to remember that he did actually know Sora and the others from before. It kind of took me a while anyway, because, since the summons were all stored in those stone thingies, I didn't really think of them as recognizing Sora. Too much Final Fantasy IX, I guess, since the eidolons mostly act as tools rather than characters, except for Ramuh. But now I have repented of my slave-driver ways of thinking.
Ping, I felt, was exceedingly lame. I know that Sora likes to stand up for people and stuff, but since I was watching as an outsider, every time he tried to tell Shang how hard Ping was working, I was like, "Dude, Sora's the one that did all the work! Ping did nothing!" I didn't notice until the second time that "he" was actually falling down and stuff, which I now think is pretty awesome.
According to IMDb, the guy who played Jecht voiced Shan-yu in this game, which I find very amusing for some reason. Maybe it's because, also according to IMDb, the guy who played Tidus voiced Jack Sparrow, though I'm not quite sure how those would relate. I did see Pat Morita's name in the official KH2 credits, and I'm glad he was able and willing to be the Emperor.
Mulan was totally awesome. It probably helped that she introduced the awesomest new feature ever of "Limit"! We so wanted to get a good Sora to pose with all the other KH2 characters that join the party so they could do their Limit poses. Or we would have if we had gone to a KH gathering or something. And Sora cosplayers, as far as we've met, have a bad habit of only caring about posing by themselves or with other Keyblade holders. It's rather ironic, I think.
And then we saved the Emperor and it was all very happy. I noticed that the stories for each world were a lot longer than they were in KH1, which is awesome, because it means more time playing, but sometimes it seemed like they were trying to do more and less at the same time, and it felt kind of off.
So then it was off to Beast's Castle. I love the Beast's Castle bit. I mean, the Beast comes and beats you up, and you're all like, "Huh? But we're friends, aren't we?" And then Sora's like, "Huh? But we're friends, aren't we?" And instead of Beast just reverting to his spoiled self from the movie, they actually gave a reason for him to be acting weird. I don't know why I had so little faith in the game designers.
They used a lot of strange words in Beast's Castle. Hollow Bastion, too. I mean, "undercroft"? What is that? (Why do I get the feeling someone's going to tell me?)
I was amused to see Sora talking to Chip, because Haley Joel Osment was Bradley Pierce's successor to the role. Bradley Pierce was listed in the credits, but Chip didn't talk at all. Maybe he talks when you go back? I don't remember.
I really like Xaldin as a character. I think it's awesome that, according to the Organization XIII naming tradition, he might be the Nobody of someone named Linda. But he's the kind of character that I hate, because they're so evil. I liked how they did him though.
Neither of us really like how they animate Belle's face sometimes, but we had that same problem with the movie, too, so really, it's perfect!
That's right! The layout of the castle! We didn't really notice when we played so much, because it had been so long since we'd seen the movie, but it's almost exactly the same as in the movie! When we watched the movie the other day, we were like, "Wow! It's just like in Kingdom Hearts!!" We were very excited. You really understand the layout better, watching the movie, after you've wandered the halls on your own. It's awesome.
At the one point in the movie where Belle goes into the West Wing, and the Beast chases her out, and then she decides to leave, they cut to her pulling her cloak on as she runs down the stairs to the right of the entrance hall (facing inside), and I was like, "Hey!" Athena knew right away that I was thinking KH got it wrong because if she just left the West Wing, according to KH, she would be running down the stairs on the right, so she pointed out that Belle had to get her cloak and I was satisfied. It really is very cool. The only difference is that what ended up being the entrance to the ballroom in Kingdom Hearts seemed to be an exit to a courtyard in the movie.
There. Now I've caught up on my KH2 review, and I am satisfied.
Today I am thankful for Bookweb, Saiyuki Reload 7 being in stock, cooling trends, getting caught up on my KH2 review, and being able to translate the Insaaaaaaaane Series which is really fun and awesome.