Hard to believe that it is already April, and I am still so behind on my blog. Normally, I would have already caught up, but a lot has been happening and so now I have that much more to write about. Having my sleeping schedule be completely out of order also doesn’t help; it is not normal for me to sleep at 2 or 3am. Furthermore, I am getting burned out on plamo because so many things kept going wrong. And as a result, no time for manga or eroge.
Early in the month, I had to battle it out with AmiAmi’s servers, clicking refresh every minute, to pre-order the Robot Damashii of Villkiss from Cross Ange. To my luck, I was able to secure one before it sold out in 20 minutes. I adore the mecha design and I’m enjoying the anime so far, so I definitely want a Villkiss on my desk. Not to mention that the pilot figure of Ange is part of the 1st edition bonuses. My first resin kit, the Avalanche Exia Dash Ver. TM, also arrived. I immediately checked for any missing parts, and glad that nothing was wrong.
I went back to my parent’s place the first weekend of April. Everything went so well last weekend that everything turned upside down this time. Long story short, I got really upset at my little brother, wasted an entire day of time and argued until we have got it sorted out. To lighten up our bad mood, we watched some videos and then played Gundam Breaker. There was this one hard mission we couldn’t beat, where a PG God Gundam tries to punch your head off while MG Unicorns and Strike Freedoms shoots you down with their infinite range beams. Later in the day, we finished the last two episodes of Build Fighters Try. Slightly different from its prequel, but I enjoyed the series for what it is, pure-hearted battles with very little twists or deep story. I expected a cameo of Reiji, for the show to explain some mysteries from the prequel, and disappointed myself when it didn’t happen. As I was leaving, I dropped by Ry’s house (for the first time ever) to grab the PS3 I bought from his friend and gave it to my brother after texting him the hidden location of the PS3 One Piece: Kaizoku Musou game I bought a while back.
I have been looking forward to the plamo club’s first gathering of spring, but fate was against me. First, the weather was not good. Rather, it felt mischievous and ended up wasting my time. My plan was to do some painting at 部長’s house before the gathering, when at that time, there was no rain. Only after I arrived at his house did it start sprinkling, and then occasionally stopping and starting again. I really wanted to make some progress on my HMM Blade Liger, and the rain started up as soon as I tried to paint outside. I then tried to paint inside by the bathroom window, but I couldn’t see well enough to judge color and texture. Nothing but failure until it was time for the club, where second, our supplier didn’t show up.
The first meeting of the term is when our supplier delivers the club’s group order. I have been waiting weeks for this day so that I can get my much needed modeling supplies, and was disappointed when they didn’t show up. It turns out they didn’t know the club was meeting up on this day. They did ship the orders to 部長’s house rather than delaying for another a week, so that was nice of them at least.
Misfortune aside, I displayed my 4 Gundams from Gundam 00 1st season, as well as my Valvrave I Hito. One of the members (who I will refer to as Dragon) has a RG Exia, and she brought it to the club today so that I could take a good look at it. It felt strange to see MG style details in such a small scale. Some of the re-designed elements I don’t exactly like but not too awful. I spent most of my time taking photos and seeing what people were working on. It was great to see everyone again after the long gap since the last club meeting, and everyone was quite productive too. 後輩 worked on his battleships, my roommate – his Hi-Nu Gundoom, Dragon – her MSG Unite Swords, Mr.Warhammer – his Warhammer figures, 先輩 – her metal Gundam kit, 部長 – a Pikachu model, the military guy – his tank, and lastly another member worked on his HG GM Sniper K9. My roommate had been busy and haven’t gone to the club in a while, so it was good to see him join us this time.
A bit later a certain conversation outright upset me. I’m here to enjoy the hobby of plastic models, not listen to criticisms and derogatory comments about certain anime. Especially so when someone (me) in the same room may be watching it and enjoying it. Thankfully, 部長 was respectful enough to change the topic after a hint. Despite the negatives, today’s gathering was quite active ones and fun. After the meeting, a number of us ate dinner together at a pho restaurant. You can see photos of what other members were working on at the plamo club’s blog.
In the next week, I spent most of my time contemplating certain plans, scouring the net, and organizing files on my PC. That means it felt as if I didn’t put my time to good use. On Friday, I watched an episode of Monogatari Series, and then I played some SAO:HF. I tried to proceed to the 4th area with Philia, but an event teleported me back to town. This point in the story was kind of troublesome and not exactly motivating. At night, I worked on MG Exia’s panel-lining and sealed the surfaces with flat topcoat.
On Saturday, I was supposed to treat anyone that showed up at 部長’s house out to dinner as a way of encouraging more club members to visit, whether to work on models or to hang out. Well, nobody but me and 後輩 as usual, so we will try again next Saturday. Anyways, 部長 caved into buying a Metal Build Freedom Gundam. He has always talked about how great Metal Builds are and wanted one. I have seen the Metal Build Freedom in person during my first visit to Japan in 2012, but this was my first time handling it. The hefty weight, steady joints, and new mechanics are neat, but my opinion of the Metal Build line still remains indifferent. I think that their recent re-designs are great, but nothing drove a desire to own one myself.
Given all my failures of painting recently, I chose to do something simple, the HMM Blade Liger’s hydraulic cylinders. Even then, I accidentally painted some silver parts in gold and didn’t realize it until I got home. The parts should have been sanded more evenly as well. I painted VVVI’s gun along with the HMM parts, but for whatever reason, only the gun ended up with a terrible texture. I gave up and went inside. 後輩 wanted my help in fixing the display stand for his Musai battleship because the ship itself was too heavy and tips over. He wanted me to fill the inside of the base with putty to add weight. Ok, but I had a better idea. I took 2 coins and glued them to the inside of the base. We tested it and problem solved. 後輩 also wanted to try out my can of gloss topcoat on his finished Musai battleship, but he couldn’t spray it very well. 後輩 left when he was done working on stuff, earlier than usual. 部長 decided to quickly finish painting his MG Exia and it was a race against dusk. He couldn’t see too well in the dim light, but he finished with a decent job. He is not 100% done yet because he still has to topcoat and panel-line, as well as tightening all the joints. Well, his progress beat my own MG Exia, which at this point was still finishing up the armors. We talked for a while after he finished, but soon it was 9pm and I got going. Back home, I continued touching up Exia’s GN Condensers with Hasegawa’s Hologram Finish sheet, but the ones on the legs failed over and over. It took many tries and hours, but I did get all the GN Condensers finished. I also used HIQ’s Parts’s Mirage Seals for the eyes, and they worked spectacularly.
On the next day before the club gathering, I quickly dropped by 部長’s house to modify MG Exia’s necks by lengthening it by 1 mm. At the club itself, we got a new member today. His timing was perfect too, because 部長 had ordered the Mega Size 1/48 Gundam for everyone to build together as the special club activity of this term. Myself, 部長, and the new member got started on it, while other members focused on their own models. I chose the head and attempted without using the manual. The build was quite interesting. After I finished the Gundam head (albeit a few parts incomplete), I switched to my HG Hi-Mock. My roommate had been building his own Hi-Mock too, and he finished quite quickly. I was only able to build the body and legs, but no arm. Mr.Warhammer got his new HG Try Burning Gundam and did not hesitate to dive into it, completing the upper half. 先輩 finally finished her metal Gundam kit that she had been slowly putting together over the past few months. Displayed on the table was 部長’s newest and expensive purchase, the Metal Build Freedom Gundam, in addition to his MG Exia and MG Impulse with Perfect Strike’s backpack. I didn’t bring anything this time, but my roommate had his Hi-Nu Gundoom.
Near the end of the club meeting, the Mega Size Gundam’s upper half was done and 部長 called everyone over to rush the remaining two legs. We actually went overtime but nobody chased us out so we were able to finish it. All of us signed the Gundam and then we took some group photos with it. Looking back, all of us working to finish the Gundam together was a really great experience. Go to the plamo club’s blog to see us working and other displayed models on our table.
By now, I’m tired of all my painting failures and needed a break. But! On Friday the 17th, Dragon was going to visit 部長’s house to paint her RG Wing Zero. She had planned her custom colors since February, but didn’t have the time to do it until now. I didn’t have to join, but I thought that I should be there to help out. Her focus for today was painting all of the wings in gold and then adding a purple & red gradient along the edges. I assisted Dragon in setting up, but she did the painting herself. Not bad at all, although a couple accidents did happen. A lot of my Super Metallic Gold got used up, but Dragon said she’d buy me another bottle. After she finished (with me doing the cleaning), 部長 asked Dragon if she wanted any spare parts from his unbuilt MG Banshee and fake MG Exia. And of course, she chose all the special and chrome plated parts. Aside from helping around, I only puttied up some Zoid parts and nothing else. When it became time for dinner, Dragon going to meet with some other friends in downtown, so after dropping her off there, me and 部長 tried out a Taiwanese restaurant. It wasn’t bad, but kind of pricey.
This Saturday was the day I got back into Yu-Gi-Oh. What happened was 部長 and Mr.Warhammer came to pick me up and after we went out for lunch, Mr.Warhammer wanted to drop by the local comic book store. While Mr.Warhammer checked out some paints, I talked about how a couple years ago, I tried to get back into Yugioh but had no one to play with. 部長 haven’t played in years and wouldn’t mind playing online with me, but I wanted to use the real cards. While it costs money, ① I already have a deck, ② the real cards are tangible and nicer than pixelated graphics, ③ I don’t intend on spending a lot for cards, and ④ I don’t find the card gameplay itself fun, but rather the social interaction with friends. 部長 then suggested we both buy a structure deck, in which the store had the Geargia and HEROes decks. 部長 chose the Geargia one, but I only play dragons and have a deck.
Anyways, enough sidetracking. The point of us meeting up today was to work on models at 部長’s house. 部長 himself was busy with his translation project, so we got to work in a calm and silence environment. It was a very peaceful day that I can only describe as ぽかぽか. I cut off the pour-tabs from my resin kit while Mr.Warhammer installed magnets on his Warhammer figures, which lets him easily interchange their weapons. Despite little distractions, I only got a handful of my parts done. Now I am a little afraid of how long it will take me to do 200+ parts for a single resin kit. Unlike me, Mr.Warhammer finished and moved onto hand-painting his custom color HG Try Burning Gundam. While I didn’t want to paint, I at least primed some of my HMM Zoid parts. 部長 later looked at his new Yugioh deck and panel-lined his MG Exia.
Even though today was the first time Mr.Warhammer is here at 部長’s house, we wanted to have at least 4 people for when I take everyone out to sushi, so we ordered delivery pizza for dinner instead. While we waited, we took turns facing off in Gundam Extreme VS Full Boost on the PS3. A rule for ourselves is that we can only play units that we have models of (including variants), to which Mr.Warhammer was sad that there was no playable units from Build Fighters. Our last round in particular was chaotic fun. Exia & Exia VS Exia & Exia. When one Exia went Trans-Am, everyone else went Trans-Am, filling the screen with flashes of red. The game even lagged at certain moments. Our pizza arrived as we finished and then all of us gathered around the dining table to read the Dengeki Hobby magazine while we ate. After eating, me and Mr.Warhammer was about to get going when 部長 offered Mr.Warhammer some of his canceled projects. We stayed kind of long but Mr.Warhammer succeeded the HG Nu Gundam HWS and HG V2 Gundam. At home, I tried to play some episodes of Gundam 00 [2nd] on the side while I surf the net, but I honestly can’t multi-task and find myself paying full attention to the TV. (-д-;)
Another Sunday, another club gathering. I didn’t want to bring much, so I only brought along my straight-built HG Hi-Mock (with a Rensouhou-chan’s head). Can you spot it in the photos? 部長 was setting up his display of models when he claimed that his MG Blitz + IWSP is incapable of standing up without a base due to it being back-heavy. I took on the challenge to prove him wrong. I succeeded not even a minute after, except he denied that it is standing up straight. I glanced over at his MG Buster that is supposedly standing up straight, and we argued for a while. Decide whose pose was better by looking at closer photos at the plamo club’s blog. By the way, Dragon was skyped in because she couldn’t make it here today. She, along with my roommate, served as the judges for when me and 部長 dueled in Yugioh. Unexpectedly, I won. Not knowing how his own cards worked, 部長 didn’t do much besides constantly search his deck. I just defended until I could summon Red Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon, and then it was the end. Here is a spoiler though, I would not win a single Yugioh duel after today. Through Skype, I requested to see Dragon’s room. It was hard to see through the low quality video feed and all I actually remember is vaguely the floors of the living room and hallway, with piles of stuff everywhere. Meanwhile, Mr.Warhammer was painting his HG Nu HWS with a black base coat, and 後輩 was experimenting with a Zeon themed custom Hi-Mock. 先輩 was there too. After the meeting, most of us went to eat together at a pho restaurant. 部長 decided not drop off his boxes of gunpla and had the Mega Size Gundam on the table while we eat. （￣△￣；）
The following Thursday was absolutely terrible. While I don’t want to stress out over models, I won’t finish if I don’t actually work on them. My plan have been to take it easy by progressing on the small pieces until I was ready to come back full force. But the problem was, nothing went well. I was at 部長’s house again, trying to progress on what I could. I painted some hydraulic cylinders, meh quality. I noticed parts that didn’t cement together properly, only after I had painted them. I spilled and wasted precious paint. I could’t decide on what parts to paint colors. And oh look, I am low on the paints I need. I am putting up the white flag, I give up. When will I recover, I don’t know.
On Friday, Dragon and 後輩 were going to visit 部長’s house. Despite yesterday’s mess, I can’t possibly miss a party! I decided to go over, with no intention of working on anything. I loaded some episodes of Kamen Rider Fourze onto my flash drive since 部長 showed a small interest in watching a Kamen Rider series. Sadly, he was busy with his project today, so I just gave him the episodes for him to watch later. Perhaps it was for the best that we didn’t watch it together. I can already imagine how he will criticize and make fun of this and that. Even if he doesn’t, Dragon will anyways. Since we finally have a total of 4 people here today, I treated everyone out to an all-you-can-eat sushi restaurant. 部長 and 後輩 had never been to there before and they liked it, so I am glad. Dragon and 部長 had to take off early, but 後輩 stayed with me until I finished devouring everything. I had a fun time talking to 後輩, as it was been a while since we really talked.
The last Sunday of April. I leisurely watched an episode of KanColle and finally got around to the last episode of Ika Musume’s second season. I also spent some time in PSO2. For today’s club, I displayed my 1/100 Kyrios and HG Reborns Gundam. 部長 didn’t know in detail about Reborns Gundam, so I used the model to explain the transformation, fin fangs and etc. 部長 himself had the following for display: Metal Build Freedom, RG Zeta, MG Force Impulse, and (his brand new) Robot Damashii Banshee Norn [Destroy Mode]. The Mega Size Gundam was there too. The recent new member was here today and we chat a bit as he built his MG Musha Gundam, which has a pretty crappy color for the gold parts. Apparently, he has a PG Unicorn Gundam along with PG 00 Raiser and PG Strike Freedom. For MGs, he has a Nu Gundam, Sazabi, God and the 5 Gundams from Wing EW. Sadly, we won’t get to see any of them in person since all his models are at his parent’s place and he won’t bring him. 先輩 was slowly building her HG Hi-Mock. She kept bringing her unbuilt MG Sengoku Astray, but never had the time for it. Me and 部長 also dueled in Yugioh, but all of our experts were not here today and so the rules regarding certain situations were unclear. And oh, I lost. He now knows how to use his deck and had a few new cards that played well. The gathering today felt short for whatever reason. Look at photos of pretty neat Gundams over at the plamo club’s blog. Later at night, my roommate returned from his parent’s place and we dueled several matches. He had a similar deck to 部長. I then spent the rest of the night researching Yugioh cards and accessories.
Over the next few days, I spent quite a bit of time looking at Yugioh related stuff. I occasionally visited the local card shop where I bought some singles for 50 cents. Online-wise, I only ordered singles less than $3. My roommate also ordered some cards and put together a Blackwing deck. We dueled a couple times and I tasted utter defeat except for a single round. I also started to watch Yugioh GX and Yugioh 5D’s. Depending on my mood, I flip back and forth between the two. On Tuesday, I was hanging out with 部長 and talking about Yugioh over dinner. I invited him to drop by my apartment and see my place for the first time. My roommate was there and they dueled a bit. I wanted to play a round with 部長 too. He reluctantly agreed, but then got impatient during our match. He had other plans to get to for the night and wanted to get going, but never actually told us that.
I returned to my parent’s house Thursday night, which was also the last day of April, so I will talk about my extended weekend in next month’s post.
This month I watched:
- Cross Ange (A certain battle finished off-screen and felt really cheap. Festival and following events shuffled character relationships.)
- Date A Live OVA (Hilarious, and great to see more of Touka and Origami.)
- Rinne no Lagrange (ep. 7)
- KanColle (Yamato. Nagato + squirrel = (*´∇｀*))
- Gundam Build Fighters Try (finished. Great series where you are supposed to simply enjoy pure-hearted battles with no deep conflict.)
- Monogatari Series (finished Mayoi Kyonshi arc. Loved it)