Jeremy Thatcher Dragon Hatcher (Book Reviews #2)

Intro:
Jeremy Thatcher is a regular sixth grader in a small town. He deals with bullies, scary teachers, and lovesick girls. While running from Mary Lou Hutton, a girl who has feelings for him that are not reciprocated, he comes across a shop called ‘Elive’s Magic Shop’. Curious, he enters and purchases a beautiful oval-like object with colors that seemed to speak to him. However, Mr. Elives, the shopkeeper, warns him multiple times to not buy the item. Then, mysteriously, changes his mind, saying that the object has chosen him. Puzzled, yet excited, Jeremy takes the object home to find that it is a dragon egg. Jeremy then has to raise the dragon whilst dealing with Mary Lou and his bullies, Howard Morton and Freddy the Frog Killer and his crazed art teacher, Mr. Kravitz. Because dragons were going extinct, a new realm had to be created for them to safely reside. This land, however, does not house dragonlings well, so dragons must be hatched in the real world. Jeremy is one of the Hatchers, a series of dragon raisers picked by the individual dragons, who finds out that he has a duty to send Tiamat, his dragon, to the realm where dragons reside.
Author: Bruce Coville
Series: Magic Shop #2
Genre: Fantasy
Page #’s: 148
Chapter #’s: 13

Quality:
Plot +: I really enjoyed the plot. I think the complexity was not hard to understand while still being thorough.
Story +: I enjoy coming of age novels, and the story elements were very coming of age-esque.
Foreshadowing -: I don’t recall any uses of foreshadowing and the possibilities were there.
Cliffhanger +: There were instances, at the end of chapters, where Coville used cliffhangers
Setting +: The setting was very simplistic, but was easy to understand and didn’t disrupt the experience.
Characters +: None of the characters were too obnoxious.
Writing +: The story is written well and it was an easy read.
Plot Consistency -: The plot changed throughout the story. That is my biggest pet peeve, so it disrupted the book for me.
Reread Ability -: The book was good, but not phenomenal enough for me to want to read it again.
Creativity +: The story was very creative.
Proofreading +: There were no errors that I detected.
Length +: The length of the book was perfect.
Humor -: I don’t really remember many instances where I laughed out loud.
Series Consistency -: I never read any of the other books in the series and understood the story fine, so, I don’t think the book series really has a consistency. The books within the series have their own adventures each, with the central idea surrounding Mr Elive’s Magic Shop.

Quality Score: 7.5/10
Entertainment Score: 8/10

Conclusion:
Even though this book is part of a series, you don’t have to read the books in order considering I had no confusion regarding what was going on. This book was good, but it wasn’t amazing. Even though I love dragons this book was only okay for me. It’s a good children’s story, however, if you get older, it may not be as good.

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The Sims 2: Double Deluxe (Game Reviews #2)

Intro:
If you are unaware of what Sims games offer to players, allow me to explain. Sims games may quite possibly be the first and most popular life simulation game on the market. Considering that The Sims are of the simulation genre, it doesn’t really have a story but rather you are the storyteller. Each time you make a Sim, a new story is told through how you care for your Sim, how your Sim cares about others, or what you make them do with their life. In this way, you are able to have more control over the character considering that you have all power over every aspect of each Sim.
Console: PC
Series: Sims
Rating: T
Genre: Simulation
Publisher: EA

Quality:
Lip Sync +: The lip sync is not really an issue because the Sims don’t actually speak English. They speak a language called Simlish and you are constantly listening to them speak this foreign language. You can’t really judge lip sync for another language but it seemed fine.
Music +: The Sims games’ music is always really pretty and catchy. This game is no exception.
Framerate +: I thought the framerate was fine. Considering that this rendition was released in 2009, it works.
Creativity -:
This game is not very creative considering how many renditions there are for Sims, but if you want a life simulation game, I would at least recommend this series.
Art -: There is one thing about this game is that I don’t remember thinking about how beautiful the game is. Sims 2 Double Deluxe is just not a very pretty game and you shouldn’t play it for that reason.
Graphics -: The graphics may have been pretty good for the time, but have not aged very well. A lot of the cut scenes that happen whenever a momentous event occurs show awkward polygon looking Sims.
Replay Value -: Sims games are really only associated with a certain mood you are in. You only really play Sims games if you are in the mood for them, and never really again. Because the game play is only fun for about 10 minutes, I can’t see why most people would want to play again for long periods of time.
Control +: The controls work very well with the options of a computer but I must say they don’t exactly utilize all computer buttons. I don’t think this is a negative though because simulation games don’t need to be complex.
Satisfaction of Winning -: Because there weren’t any real ways of celebration (if you had a party, you could only invite 2 people and you didn’t have a car or anything to drive to a place to celebrate) if anything positive happened, you didn’t really feel happy. For instance, if your Sim grew up, it wasn’t really satisfying.
Difficulty +: It’s a life simulation game, so it only has to be as hard as you want it to be.
Plot -: There is no plot.
Story +: Although there was no plot per see, there were some already-moved in Sims that had little story lines that could actually affect your Sim if you decide to interact with them.
Side Quest Options -: You weren’t given a car or even an option to buy a car, so I felt like that was a mistake. It’s a life simulation game after all. Plus there weren’t a lot of options for what you can do in the cities.
Animation +: I think the animation is actually fine for the time. It has aged fine.
Sound Quality +: I thought the sound quality was fine.
Sound Effects -: I am a very impatient person, so I would often fast-forward through all actions that I had my Sims do. The thing is, when I did this, the sound effects would often junk out.
Camera +: The camera was fully in your control and you could easily manipulate it.
Editing +: There were no proofreading issues as far as I could find.
Glitches -: I played this game a lot so I came across quite a few glitches, but I also have to say most of them were visual and I did not come across any game breaking moments.
Gameplay -: The game play was very simple but there wasn’t enough variety for me.
Length +: The length was fine.

Quality Score: 5/10

Entertainment Score: 8.5/10

Conclusion:
I actually am a huge fan of life simulation games, so, my entertainment score may be a little biased. However, if you want to play a life simulation game, I would not recommend this specific game just because the most current Sim game is probably the best bet. I would only recommend this game if you are a Sim collector or something.

Johnny Test Review (TV Show Reviews 1)

Intro:
Johnny Test lives in Porkbelly with his talking dog, Dukey and his twin genius sisters, Mary and Susan. The whole of the show is Johnny going through adventures involving superheroes, science experiments (a lot of science experiments) and running from bullies to name a few.
Genre: Family/Animated
Rating: TV-Y7
Seasons: 6
Episodes: 117
Creator: Scott Fellows
Time per Episode: ~30 min

Quality:
Plot -: The plot is extremely clichéd and I don’t think if you want to watch a show for a complex or intense plot, this is the show for you.
Story -: There aren’t any real story elements to add on to the plot line. Well, I shouldn’t say there aren’t ANY story elements to add to the plot line, because there is a common romance throughout between the Test’s neighbor, Gil, and Susan and Mary. However, it gets pretty old pretty fast and seems unrealistic due to their obsession. They are so obsessed with this “dream boy” that they name the unlock code to their lab “Gil”. I feel like, logically, if the sisters were that obsessive, someone would take action to stop such unhealthy behavior.
Music -: There are a lot of really weird sound effects that are overused and the music is only okay.
Lip Sync -: I remember a lot of instances in the beginning episodes of really poor lip sync.
Characters -: The characters are so lifeless and have no depth to them. Most of the dialogue between the characters are quick remarks to be funny, but the audience doesn’t know anything about any of the characters; thus, you naturally don’t really care about their well-being. The only character that actually is okay in my books is Dukey, but that’s just because he actually has sense when compared to the other main protagonists.
Animation -: I thought the animation was horrible. I don’t understand the faces the appeal in the faces that I saw on the characters’ faces. They were gross looking and made the show feel even more childish than it should have felt. Just because a show is intended for kids does not mean it shouldn’t appeal to adults as well.
Voice Acting +:
Despite all the hate I have been giving, the voice acting feels natural.
Humor -: I used to like the humor as a kid but now that I watch it, I realize that the humor feels pretty forced and never made me laugh. It relies on dumb, childish jokes (such as making Johnny have a super fart power) as well as constant repetition.
Sound Quality -: The sound quality would be fine, if it were not for annoying sound effects being blared every 2 seconds. Sound effects are fine if used to emphasize major points but Johnny Test takes it to an extreme. I am not even joking when I say that there were times that every other word a character said, a new sound effect played.
Plot Consistency +: The plot is so basic that it is difficult not to follow through with it.
Rewatch Ability -: The show doesn’t really have anything going for it for anyone to have a drive to watch it again.
Creativity -: Everything feels pretty clichéd and not very creative.
Dialogue -: The dialogue is honestly really repetitive and simplistic. The show is obviously targeted solely for children and I always feel like that is not a smart decision for show makers to decide to do because they are isolating their audience to a very small percentage of viewers.
Length -: I feel like this show didn’t need to be so long because the plot was not worthy of having 6 seasons.
Setting -: The setting is actually pretty boring and not enticing. Most of the episodes are just Johnny and Dukey in his house or at his school.
Errors +: It’s almost impossible to have any plot errors with such a simplistic plot.

Quality Score: 3.5/10

Entertainment Score: 4/10

Conclusion:
I feel like this show is great for one purpose: background noise. That’s the sole reason I actually got far enough to review this show. Even as a kid, this show is not a suitable fit for anyone to spend as long as I did watching it. Avoid this show at all costs. It is not a good show for kids or adults.