Eight Ways The Avengers Could Have Easily Stopped Thanos In Infinity War

Infinity War was a seriously great movie. Whatever your opinion on it may be, you can’t deny just how ambitious and impressive it actually is. That said, the movie does have its shortcomings. Primarily, the large amount of opportunities that the heroes missed where they could have easily stopped and defeated Thanos. With so many characters, these kinds of problems were almost unavoidable, but that doesn’t make them any less detrimental to the movie’s quality. The other day in my Infinity War Review, I stated “I could think of a hundred ways they could have easily stopped Thanos at multiple points throughout the film”. While this is nowhere close to a hundred, these eight ways the heroes could have defeated Thanos prove that Doctor Strange was wrong when he said they only have one chance of victory.

#1 With a Little Preparation

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Benjamin Franklin once said “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail”. When you consider this, it makes perfect sense why the heroes failed to stop Thanos in the end. They didn’t prepare whatsoever. Literally everything the heroes do in Infinity War is in the spur of the moment. Stark states to Strange on Ebony Maw’s ship that Thanos has been on his mind for six years. Wait, WHAT? You’re telling me, you knew Thanos and the threat he posed perfectly well for six years, and you didn’t do anything about it until he showed up on your doorstep? You knew where at least ONE of the stones was. You could have had the Mind Stone separated from Vision and destroyed months, maybe even YEARS ago. Thor knew where the reality stone was, you could have done the same with that one! And possibly the Space Stone too! Earth’s heroes had YEARS to come up with a plan to combat Thanos. Granted, they were a little busy saving the world, but they still had plenty of time to figure out a way to defeat Thanos.

#2 By USING THE DAMN STONES

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Destroying the stones is a safe bet, but they could have also used the stones to their advantage. Apart from Strange using the Time Stone to look into the future, NONE of the heroes decide to use the stones in their possession at any point. For the love of Gods, Loki HELD THE SPACE STONE in his hand right at the start of the movie. He could have used the stone to open a portal underneath Thanos that went into a star. Or he could have teleported himself and Thor away when things started getting bad. Thor could then go with Loki and get the Reality Stone from the collector. That leaves the heroes with FOUR Infinity Stones to Thanos’ one, two if he somehow gets to Gamora. Speaking of which…

#3 By Not Doing a Scooby Doo

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One of the most *facepalm* moments in the film for me was when all the heroes decided it would be a good idea to split up. Seriously, you’d think the galaxy’s greatest defenders would be smarter than the Scooby Doo gang, but nope! This goes for all the heroes who decided that their tiny, 3-4 person groups could take on Thanos, but the biggest offenders by far are the Guardians of the Galaxy. They can barely deal with ZERO STONE THANOS half the time, what possessed them to make them think that half of them(not even the full team) had a chance against 2/3 stone Thanos? Gamora was just ASKING to be abducted. Granted, Thanos had the Space Stone and could teleport to them, but it’d be a while before he’d make that decision as he expected them to come to him. If Stark, Spiderman and Strange had gone back to Earth as well, then the hero’s chances are a hell of a lot higher than they were on Titan. All they’d be missing at that point is Thor, Rocket and Groot, and Thanos would have only three stones instead of four, provided they were able to protect Gamora. It’s as the slogan for Captain America: Civil War said: United we Stand, Divided We Fall.

#4 By Using Portals

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This is arguably the most obvious one on this list, which makes it all the more unbelievable how none of the heroes got this idea. Near the start of the movie when two of Thanos’ minions come to Earth to get the Mind and Time stones, Wong sends one of them through a portal to the other side of the world. When he attempts to come back through, Wong closes the portal, chopping off the villain’s arm. See what I’m getting at here? If Wong can disarm(get it?) a villain just as big, bulky and durable as Thanos, then why can’t the Sorcerer Supreme do the same to Thanos himself? You could argue that Thanos would react too quickly and avoid it, but could he do the same while unconscious? They had him asleep and incapacitated on Titan, Strange could easily get rid of his Gauntlet arm while he was like that, or hell, just cut straight to the chase and decapitate him. But that’s not the only thing the heroes could do while Thanos was out of it on Titan.

#5 By Stopping Star-Lord From Having a Tantrum

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If you’ve seen Infinity War(which you really should have if you’re reading this), you’ll remember the infuriating moment where Quill engages Thanos in a fit of anger over Gamora’s death, and wakes him up from his stupor, ruining the entire plan. Whether his actions were justifiable or not is a debate for another day. Today I’m talking about how stupid and easily preventable his actions were. Strange saw the future where he freaks out, so why didn’t he portal Quill away from the battle once his part of it was done? Why didn’t he tell him that he and his entire crew would die if he interfered? Why didn’t he tell him Gamora was dead and let him scream it out and get over it beforehand? What about Drax and Nebula? They weren’t doing anything to keep Thanos down. They could have easily restrained him and stopped him from screwing up the plan. Spiderman could have webbed him up quickly before he started pulling off the Gauntlet. Hell, why didn’t Nebula just stab Thanos in the head while he was vulnerable? They only needed two or three more seconds tops to get the Gauntlet away from Thanos, any of the proposals above and a hundred more could stop Quill and give them those few seconds.

#6 With a Little Bit of Heimsight(I’m So Sorry)

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Heimdall didn’t play that big a part in Infinity War. He teleported Hulk away from the Asgardian ship using the Bifrost and then just died. This makes him seem unimportant until you realise that Heimdall could have easily stopped Thanos’ plan single-handedly. As the guardian of the Nine Realms and the Bifrost, Heimdall can see almost everything. He can see trillions of people, hear billions of voices, know what’s happening at the other side of the universe… yet he didn’t see Thanos coming in a big ship to attack the remaining Asgardians? No, scratch that, he didn’t see Thanos’ attempts to get the stones? He didn’t see Thanos attacking the dwarves and forcing them to forge the Infinity Gauntlet? If he wasn’t sleeping on the job as seems to be the case, he and the Asgardians could have stopped Thanos before he even got the Gauntlet, let alone the stones! This is Stark deciding not to prepare for six years but on an entirely different level! But he isn’t the only Asgardian that seriously screwed up…

#7 By Aiming For the Head(or the arm)

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You had one job Thor, ONE JOB! Right at the end of the film, when Thanos collects all six stones and all hope seems lost, Thor deals a fatal blow to the Mad Titan with his new axe, reinvigorating our faith! Here’s the thing though, as Thanos puts it bluntly: “You should have aimed for the head”. All he needed to do was aim a little higher and the universe would be saved! I’ve heard a few people defending this, saying that Thor purposefully didn’t aim for the head because he wanted Thanos to suffer, but Thor could have made him suffer AND saved the universe. Instead of going for the body or head, he could have deprived Thanos of his Gauntlet arm and watched him bleed out with no chance of any finger snaps. And another thing, why did Thor wait until he had all the stones to attack? The battle of Wakanda was basically won until Thanos showed up, and everyone sensed his presence. He could have taken him out before he even killed Vision and got the final stone! I guess you could say it would have been a snap.

#8 Through Debate

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I’ve said this before in my Infinity War Review the other day, but Thanos’ motive is really stupid. To summarise, the reason he wants to wipe out half the life in the universe… is to stop overpopulation wiping out all life in the universe? The Gauntlet makes him God, and he could double all the universe’s resources just as easily as he kills half the life in the universe. Also, doesn’t half the life in the universe include trees, plants, animals… you know, important resources life needs to survive. In essence, Thanos’ finger snap is pointless. He’s simultaneously wiping out half its population and half its resources, making no actual difference. He really didn’t think this whole plan through did he? And if I, a complete idiot, can think up these counters to Thanos’ argument, think what people like Tony Stark could do(though their actions in the movie bring their intelligence into question)! Thanos has been shown perfectly willing to listen to Strange and Gamora, and he respects Stark to a degree. Maybe they could teach him the error of his ways? Who knows?

So, what do you think? Think you can debunk one or more of my suggestions? Think you have another way Marvel’s heroes could defeat Thanos and stop him from wiping out half the universe? Just want to let out your anger over Quill’s dumbass decision that doomed half the universe’s population? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below, as I’m interested to hear what YOU think.

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Infinity War Mostly Spoiler Free Review: Thanos the Mad Titan VS the Universe

I’ve never really been that interested in Marvel movies. Though to be fair, I’ve never really been interested in movies altogether, hence why this is only my second film review in the one and a half years since I started this blog. It takes a LOT to get me to go see one, especially while they’re still in the cinema. But some movies you simply can’t ignore, not matter how much you may try. Infinity War is one of those movies. There are some aspects of the Marvel universe that caught my attention, the Infinity Stones being one of them, and when my friends started talking about how awesome Infinity War was, I knew this was one film I could not skip out on. So, last week, for the first time in around a year, I ventured into a theatre. Did it live up to the hype and my expectations though?

Let’s start with the biggest part of the movie: THANOS! This big purple psychopath has been hyped up since the first Avengers, and he more than lives up to his reputation in Infinity War. He’s imposing and intimidating, brutal and bloodthirsty, and the movie makes his immense power quite clear. He barely sustains more than a single scratch in most of his fights throughout the film! Josh Brolin does an outstanding job of portraying him. But if there’s one problem with his character, it’s his motive. So the whole reason he wants to get the stones and wipe out half the life in the Universe is because of overpopulation? It would make sense if it was anything but the Infinity Stones, but here’s the thing: the Infinity Stones literally make their user GOD. Why doesn’t he just snap his fingers and, I don’t know, double all the resources in the universe? Thanos gets a lot of character development over the films long run time, and it is made perfectly clear that Thanos thinks what he is doing is right, and good for the universe. I suppose you could say “But he’s the MAD Titan, he’s craaaaazzzyyy!”, but that’s just lazy writing.

Despite him being the proverbial star of the show, he’s also strangely absent from around half of the movie. The heroes on Earth fight his ‘children’ instead, and although the fights against them are epic, only one of them has any personality beyond ‘evil’, *MINOR SPOILER* and he dies around 30 minutes into the movie *SPOILER END*. Fortunately, the heroes don’t share this fate. Almost every single one of them gets their chance in the spotlight. Even though, inevitably, some have bigger roles than others, it’s seriously impressive that the movie juggles around twenty different protagonists with as much grace as it does. The only characters that I’d say didn’t get enough screentime were Drax, who I kept forgetting was there until he showed up for some comedic relief out of the blue, and Ant Man. I don’t think I saw Ant Man at all. Guess he decided to stay small in case he got the chance to catch Thanos by surprise later. As well as this, the pacing is also surprisingly good, and not all over the place like I expected. No moments felt too slow or fast-paced and I was honestly taken aback when I realised it was two and a half hours afterwards, as it didn’t feel that long at all.

One of my biggest problems with Infinity War is the fact that all the characters seem to have a single brain cell shared between them. I lost count of the amount of times I wanted to punch a character because they did something stupid or nonsensical. The movie is full of characters doing things that are idiotic, irrational, or questionable at best. If Loki had been smart enough to just use the goddamn space stone at the start, the movie would be five minutes, not 2 and a half hours. There are moments when I just wanted to scream at the screen because of the character’s sheer stupidity. I could think of a hundred ways they could have easily stopped Thanos at multiple points throughout the film; ME, A COMPLETE IDIOT! Nevertheless, I can’t fault the awesome action scenes the character’s dumb decisions resulted in. If you love action then Infinity War is a must-see.

As you might have guessed, Infinity War is significantly more serious than most other Marvel movies. I mean, the fate of the entire universe is at stake, it’s not exactly time for jokes! Fortunately, the drama isn’t too much. It feels very real and emotional, but it isn’t overdone to the point where you get so used to it that it turns comical. There are some seriously poignant moments throughout the film, with the infamous *SPOILER* “I don’t feel so good Mr. Stark” *SPOILER END* being chief among them. While Infinity War handles its drama well for the most part, the lighter moments and the comedy aren’t nearly as good. There were one or two moments where I chuckled but the rest of the jokes felt incredibly forced and fell flat on their face. It’s especially disappointing considering the Guardians of the Galaxy are the worst offenders in this regard. Comedy is supposed to be their entire shtick!

Although I can’t deny that Infinity War is the most ambitious crossover in history, I can’t look past its flaws either. While the drama is handled extremely well, the comedy is lacking. While Thanos is a great villain, he’s overshadowed somewhat by his minions and one of the stupidest villain motives I’ve ever seen. While the pacing and characters are top-notch, the character’s heads are as empty as the mirror dimension. If you’re a fan of Marvel then you’re guaranteed to love it, if you’re anyone else you’ll probably like it. Infinity War’s pure ambition is staggering, and I enjoyed it and its shocking ending enough that I’m waiting with bated breath for the sequel despite not having much of an interest in Marvel movies. In the end, Infinity War may be far from perfect, but it is instead balanced, like all things should be. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Verdict: B-

Introducing the “How Powerful Is…” Tier List!

I’ve always found a character’s power level interesting. It’s always fun to theorise ‘how character A would do against character B’ in a fight, to think about how they compete with every other character in history. Through my “How Powerful Is…” series, I sought to give a bit of added depth to this simple idea by analysing character’s strengths, weaknesses, and powers in the hopes of finding where their power ranking stands. Now that I’ve done this for a decent amount of characters, I think I’m finally ready to take it to the next level. Today, I’m very happy to introduce the “How Powerful Is…” Tier List! Every time I analyse a character’s strength, they will get put on to this extensive tier list, where they will stand with, above, or below dozens of other characters from all forms of media. Video games, anime, TV shows, cartoons, even books! With that brief explanation out of the way, I’m proud to present the first version of the “How Powerful Is…” Tier List!

Tier 1(Power Level 0-9): Only Human

These characters are the weakest of the bunch, not much stronger than you or I. They don’t go far beyond the strength of an average human and only really know a few combat moves at best. 1 is a character weaker than the average human. 9 is your average street fighter.

Members:

 

Tier 2(Power Level 10-19) Human Peak

These characters stretch their humanity as far as it can go through intensive training to reach the peak of human strength, without having any superhuman abilities. Think Captain America or Batman. 10 is a human skilled in Kung Fu or other fighting styles, 19 is a super soldier that doesn’t break their set human limits.

Members:

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Tier 3(Power Level 20-29) Superhuman

Superhuman characters, as the name suggests, are characters that go beyond any normal human limits, whether it’s through super strength, an accelerated regenerative ability or some kind of unique power humans can never hope to attain. 20 would be a low tier anime character a la Captain Kuro from One Piece, capable of feats like being smashed through walls and surviving. 29 would be a character like default Iron Man, or most anime protagonists at the start of their journey: incredibly strong by our standards, but weak in their respected universe.

Members:

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Tier 4(Power Level 30-39) Supernatural

Being superhuman is impressive and all, but being supernatural is taking it to the next level. These characters aren’t just strong, they surpass their limits in ways that are simply unexplainable. 30 would be the Izumi from Fullmetal Alchemist, 39 would be Post New World Luffy.

Members:

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Tier 5(Power Level 40-49) Herculean

Herculean characters have powers that mirror the powers demigods possess. While they may not be able to threaten hundreds of thousands of people with divine powers, they’re more than a match for most other moderately powered characters. I guess you could say they’re the superhumans of the superhumans. 40 would be Hulk at his average level of anger, 49 would be one of One Piece’s Four Emperors.

Members:

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Tier 6(Power Level 50-59) Demigod

These characters are certainly no joke, as they come close to matching the power of a God and may even be able to achieve it were it not for other character’s interference. ‘Father’ from Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood would be the perfect example. 50 would be characters like Ozpin from RWBY. 59 would be characters like Pit from Kid Icarus, a character capable of going toe to toe with many gods.

Members:

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Tier 7(Power Level 60-69) God

Probably the most self-explanatory tier. Characters in this tier are, or have power to match, a god. 60 would be relatively minor gods like Persephone from Greek mythology while 69 would be gods that are leaders of their respective Pantheon such as Odin or Zeus.

Members:

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Tier 8 (Power Level 70-79) Planetary Threat

God’s may be strong, but their power is usually limited to only a single planet such as Earth. These characters are powerful enough that they go around casually destroying entire planets, usually forcing the planet’s inhabitants to work together to stop them. 70 would be the Aurum from Kid Icarus, 79 would be a character like Galactus.

Members:

 

Tier 9 (Power Level 80-89) Universal Threat

Planets? Why should these characters care about such small fry, they’re more than capable of annihilating entire universes! Very few people can stand in their way. 80 would be full Infinity Gauntlet Thanos, 89 would be the Anti-Monitor.

Members:

 

Tier 10(Power Level 90-100) Multiversal Threat

Multiversal Threats are characters so powerful, they are capable of destroying several universes and even entire multiverses. They are some of the most powerful characters in their universe(or multiverse) for obvious reasons, and may even be responsible for creating it in the first place. 90 would be a low tier multiversal threat like Phoenix Force, capable of destroying anything and anyone that get’s in their way except stronger multiversal threat characters. 100 would be characters like The Presence and the One-Above-All, the single strongest character and often creator of their respected multiverse.

Members:

 

Tier 11(Power Level 100+) Joke Tier

Tier 11 is not to be taken seriously. It is merely a joke tier for characters that are weak in actuality, but have their power constantly blown out of proportion. Think Batman with Prep Time or God Usopp from One Piece.

Members:

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So, that was the first version of the “How Powerful Is…” Tier List! Every time I make a new “How Powerful Is…” I’ll add them to this tier list. Keep in mind that I’m not perfect and I may decide to change a character’s power ranking and tier at any time if I feel it is no longer accurate. If you also feel like a character should be somewhere else on the list then feel free to comment below and I’ll hear you out!

Breath of the Wild: Which Champion Is The Most Powerful?

Whatever you think of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, you have to admit that it’s certainly an interesting game. It was almost as big a leap for the Zelda series as Ocarina of Time, trying out something completely new and fresh in an attempt to make an unforgettable experience. One of the most interesting parts of the game(at least in my opinion) is the Divine Beasts… and the Champions who command them! Four heroes other than Link, each part of a different race, tasked with saving the world from Calamity Ganon! While the quality of their writing is debatable, I still found myself quite intrigued by their character. But that’s not what I’m here to talk about today. Instead, I’m going to be looking at the Champion’s power levels a la my FMAB Homunculus Rankings, ranking each one in terms of power from weakest to strongest. Starting with…

#4 Mipha

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List of Powers:

  • Excellent swimmer
  • Unparalleled spearmanship
  • Powerful healing abilities
  • Lightscale Trident gives her attacks impressive range

The Zora princess Mipha is certainly no joke when it comes to battle, despite being the weakest of the Champions. Her skill in spearmanship makes her a deadly long-ranged fighter, capable of keeping her enemies at a distance and only being outmatched in this department by Revali. She also has an impressive amount of endurance thanks to her healing abilities, and in water, she has a significant advantage over all the other champions. So what makes her the weakest in my eyes? First of all, although she is well-versed in combat, it’s clear she has more of a support role in the Champions. While her endurance is impressive, it isn’t everything, and without the offensive power to back it up, she would likely be defeated before she dealt any real damage. Zora’s are also arguably the least-suited for combat out of Hyrule’s races. They have the weakest defense due to their fish-like skin, and although Zora’s have the advantage in water, they are also disadvantaged on land. Apart from their swimming skills, they have no clear characteristic that could put them above the Rito, Gerudo and Goron’s. Unless some water happens to be nearby, defeating Mipha could be as easy as shooting fish in a barrel for the other Champions, and that’s why she gets last place as Number 4 on this list!

#3 Daruk

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List of Powers:

  • Extremely durable Goron body
  • Daruk’s protection can protect against seemingly anything
  • Massive size and strength
  • Can roll at enemies like a boulder
  • His huge Boulder Breaker sword gives him decent range and even more raw power in battle

Coming in at Number 3 is the imposing yet gentle giant Daruk! When looking over the Champions, Daruk is certainly the one that pops out at you the most, and his immense power is clear just from a quick glance. When it comes to durability, Daruk is easily the best. His tough, rocky skin combined with his nigh invincible shield ‘Daruk’s Protection’ make him no easy foe to fell. He is also not to be underestimated when it comes to offensive power, only second to Urbosa. With both the strength and durability of a boulder, and the extra range his two handed sword gives him… why did I decide to put Daruk at Number 3? Well, his ridiculous level of defense and offense comes with a price, he’s i n c r e d i b l y s l o w. What use is his rock-crushing strength if he can’t get a single hit in? Against most enemies, this wouldn’t be a problem, but Revali and Urbosa are a different story. Revali is by far the fastest of the Champions, and he could easily stay out of Daruk’s range in the sky. Urbosa is also not far off Revali’s speed, and although Daruk’s Protection has been shown to block any attack, Urbosa’s Fury has been shown to pierce through any armour, even that of Calamity Ganon. With that, Daruk comes to a stop at Number 3!

#2 Revali

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List of Powers:

  • Can create updrafts to carry him into the air
  • Capable of flying
  • Master of marksmanship with the bow
  • Extremely fast in the air
  • Different arrows give him great utility
  • Can fire up to three arrows at once at the speed of a gale

Second in power among the Champions is the Rito Revali! While his special power, Revali’s Gale is arguably the least impressive of the Champion’s powers on its own, it works well with his fighting style to make him a serious threat to almost any enemy. It allows him to create updrafts so he can get into the air and fly above his enemies, out of range of almost any opponent, including two of the Champions: Mipha and Daruk. While in the air, he is also exceedingly fast, easily going far beyond the top speeds of Daruk, Mipha and Urbosa. Finally, his mastery with the bow is something to be feared. He can fire up to three arrows at once and almost never misses his mark. On top of this, he has been shown using bomb arrows, so it’s not too much of a stretch to assume he can use other types of arrows too, giving him a large amount of utility. Despite this, he does have a few weaknesses. He has the second worst defense after Mipha and although his attack power is by no means weak, compared to Daruk and Urbosa, it could be better. So, which Champion is capable of defeating the fleet-footed(fleet-winged?) Revali, the colossal Daruk, and the graceful spearwoman Mipha? If you hadn’t guessed by now, it’s…

#1 Urbosa

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List of Powers:

  • Sword and shield give her both decent offensive and defensive power
  • Urbosa’s Fury allows her to summon long-range lightning that heavily damages and stuns any type of enemy
  • Extremely skilled swordswoman
  • Incredibly fast speed
  • Decent range with her sword, massive range with her lightning

This probably wasn’t a surprise to anyone. Out of all the champions, Urbosa is the one who has been shown to be skilled in combat the most, able to take out several Yiga Clan members effortlessly. Ganon also sent the most powerful ‘Bligh Ganon’ to fight her, Thunderblight Ganon, which suggests he also see’s Urbosa as the biggest threat out of the champions. As a Gerudo, the race closest to the human-like Hylians, she doesn’t really excel in any particular area(except attack power), but she also doesn’t really lack in any area. Urbosa has the second best speed after Revali, decent range and decent defense. But what brings her to the top of the Champions is her unique power: Urbosa’s Fury. With it, she can summon lightning on her foes from miles away with a snap of her fingers. It can pierce through the defense of any creature, including Calamity Ganon in his first form! On top of that, it also stuns them for a short while, meaning that even if they survive, she can go in for the finishing blow while they’re dazed! Urbosa is the most superhuman of the Champions, and that’s why she get’s the Number One spot in this list!

Which Champion do you think is the most powerful? I’ve done my best to research all the Champion’s abilities, strengths and weaknesses, but chances are I’ve missed something that tips the scale in favour of one of them. I’m interested to hear what YOU think, so feel free to share your opinion in the comments below and I’ll do my best to reply to as many as I can.

Summary

Champion    Rank    Power Level    Power Level In Own Universe      Tier

Mipha              4           10/100                            70/100                        Human Peak

Daruk              3           14/100                             75/100                       Human Peak

Revali              2           15/100                             78/100                       Human Peak

Urbosa            1            18/100                             85/100                      Human Peak

Unpopular Opinions: Why I’m Not Excited For Incredibles 2

“The Incredibles 2”! Now this is a movie that people have been wanting to see for years! The first Incredibles was such a spectacular film, breaking, and even taking advantage of established animation tropes to deliver a witty, yet dramatic superhero story of epic proportions! It’s arguably one of the most fondly-remembered animated films of all time, and along with other classics like Toy Story, Monsters Inc., and Finding Nemo, it helped propel Pixar to the point of being a household name. If any movie is deserving of a sequel, it’s “The Incredibles”! That’s why people have been begging incessantly for one for over a decade! But… does it really need one? Today on Unpopular Opinions, I’m going to be talking about why I’m not excited for Incredibles 2, why I think it’ll be average at best, and why sequels aren’t always a good thing.

Why does anything even remotely good NEED to get a sequel? At this point, it’s a trend I’m honestly sick of. I swear about 90% of the movies that are released are either a sequel to a popular film, or a remake of a classic(most of the time it’s horror movies). In around 99% of cases, it ends up being sub-par in comparison to the prequel, or just straight up bad. That’s not to say that it’s impossible for Incredibles 2 to be good. The movie isn’t out, so I can’t really judge it yet, and even I can’t deny that there are some sequels that live up to the precedent their predecessor set, sometimes even surpassing it. Sequels can be a good thing, but there’s one thing about the Incredibles 2 that doesn’t have me all that hopeful.

It’s forced. To make something as, well, incredible as the original Incredibles, a little something called ‘passion’ is almost a requirement. Tell me, do you put your all into a project that you don’t really want to do? Do you spend hours polishing something, making it better and better until it’s the best it can be if you have no personal drive to do so? For the vast majority, I’d say the answer is no. Brad Bird clearly didn’t intend for there to be a sequel to “The Incredibles”. He wouldn’t have done other things for over a decade if he did. But with all the people pleading for an Incredibles 2, I can’t help but feel sorry for him. That would likely make anyone give in eventually and also believe that Incredibles 2 HAS to have a sequel. Another question: Do you think he has the same passion for Incredibles 2 as he had for Incredibles 1?

When a story is written, it has a clearly defined beginning, middle, and end. Basic rules of storytelling. But what do you think happens when you artificially extend the ‘end’ part? I’d imagine it creates all sorts of problems. You’ve got to think about the continuity, how the new story is going to fit into the universe, and of course, maintaining the quality from movie to movie. If a sequel was planned, these problems can be easily avoided, but when your adding to an almost 15 year old piece of media, they’re almost unavoidable. There are plenty of examples. Just look at Star Wars, one of the most popular movie franchises of all time! The fanbase are still quite split about the prequels as well as the more recent episode 7 and 8. Just look at Apollo Justice, the game I reviewed the other day. The series creator Shu Takumi didn’t want the series to continue after the third game, but Capcom made one anyway, and it ended up being arguably the worst game in the Ace Attorney series.

Then there’s the whole problem of the difference between time periods. Time goes by fast, and 2004 was a very different time than 2018. Just by looking at the trailers, you can see the vast differences. The main villain seems to be the “Screenslaver”, a villain who hypnotises people through TV and computer screens. Do you think this guy would have even been considered as a villain over a decade ago? Then there’s all this politically correct in-your-face ‘girl power’ crap. I really hope I’m just overreacting, but this whole “Mr. Incredible stays at home looking after the kids while Mrs. Incredible is a hero” screams Feminazi and SJW pandering. At the very least, it’s an overused cliche in today’s society. Some people may like this modernisation of the Incredibles, but in my opinion, it takes out all the personality and spirit of the original. It’s like a different world, an alternate dimension, one which I feel alien to.

What do you think? Do you think I’m just overreacting, that I shouldn’t judge a book, or rather, a movie by its cover? Or do you agree with me and think “The Incredibles” should never have got a sequel? Do you think “The Incredibles 2” will be good, bad, average, a masterpiece of animation? I’m interested to hear what you think as I haven’t really seen much discussion on the movie. Be sure to share your opinion in the comments below, and I’ll be sure to read and reply to as many as possible!

Apollo Justice Ace Attorney Spoiler Free Review: Phoenix Wright 4 & Knuckles Featuring Discount Maya Fey From Capcom’s Drawing Board

Game Name: Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney 

Platforms: Nintendo DS, iOS, Android, Nintendo 3DS

Developer: Capcom

Publisher: Capcom

Price: £19.99 or $19.99

The Ace Attorney series is easily one of Capcom’s most prominent series. While it’s far from a bigshot in the gaming community like Resident Evil and Monster Hunter, it quickly accumulated a sizeable and extremely loyal fanbase. Though it’s far from reaching the sales of Capcom’s bigger franchises, Phoenix Wright is still an extremely well-known video game character. Heck, I only started the series a few months ago, but like many gamers, I’ve known about, and could clearly identify, Phoenix Wright for years. At the very least, Capcom thought it was popular enough to continue the series against the wishes of its creator. This made me quite sceptical of Apollo Justice. Usually, when a sequel is forced, it doesn’t end up living up to the bar of quality that the prequels set. However, this didn’t stop me from buying the game shortly after finishing the Ace Attorney Trilogy to try it out. I’m willing to give it the benefit of the doubt. So, does Apollo Justice live up to the precedent that Phoenix Wright set?

Apollo Justice’s gameplay is almost identical to the gameplay of the previous three Ace Attorney games. Half of the game involves going between various areas, collecting evidence and talking to suspects, and the other half involves using everything you’ve learned through your investigation in a court trial to prove your client’s innocence. It’s simple stuff, but it’s simple stuff that fills you with a sense of accomplishment and makes you feel like a goddamn genius! However, like the Magatama from the second game, Apollo Justice introduces a new mechanic to spice things up a bit: the “Perceive System”. By making use of a strange bracelet that Apollo wears, you can examine the witnesses body language to reveal their lies. In my opinion, it doesn’t get used as often as it could, but it’s nevertheless a fun little gimmick. Ace Attorney’s character sprites have always been impressive, animated, and full of life, and the “Perceive System” allows you to appreciate the amount of detail that went into them while feeling like a master psychologist.

Unfortunately, while the quality of the gameplay has stayed consistent, the quality of the writing and story has not. The previous three games in the series all had amazing writing; the cases were interesting and complex with some great, multi-layered characters. There were a few leaps in logic and a dud case here or there, but apart from that, the plot was fantastic. Shu Takumi wanted the series to end at the third game, Trials and Tribulations, and you can tell his heart wasn’t really in this sequel. When it comes to Ace Attorney, the writing for the cases is everything, and unfortunately, the only case that I feel is on the level of an original trilogy case is the second case: Turnabout Corner. Turnabout Trump is intriguing, but ultimately disappointing. Turnabout Serenade is arguably the most badly-written case in the series with more plot holes than actual plot. Turnabout Succession had potential, but is sadly let down by a hilariously anti-climatic final trial.

Not only that, but the game’s characters also suffer. The majority of the one-off characters are solidly-written, and there are some truly bombastic and unique cast members, but the main characters-the very core of the story-fall flat on their face. I’ve seen a lot of people defending this game, saying it was meant to be a departure from the original series, something completely new and different. But if that’s the case, then why does the game rely so much on the original Phoenix Wright trilogy’s charm? You can just see from Apollo’s design that he was meant to be a knockoff Phoenix Wright! I’ve spent over twenty hours playing as him, but the only real personality trait he seems to have is “young and inexperienced Phoenix Wright”. Trucy isn’t much better, her entire family being a bad, discount Fey clan, feud and all. They simply don’t hold a candle to the classic dynamic duo of Phoenix and Maya! This game’s prosecutor, Klavier Gavin is the most unique of the new characters, belonging to a law-based rock band, “The Gavinners”, which he plays in as the singer for his side job. Unfortunately, the rest of his character is almost a carbon copy of Edgeworth, but done much worse. Initially hostile, he soon shows his true colours by helping, and even somewhat befriending our intrepid protagonist. Sound familiar? And don’t even get me started on hobo Phoenix. WHAT DID THEY DO TO HIS CHARACTER?!?!?

That’s not to say there aren’t some good aspects to Apollo Justice. It’ll still scratch your crime-solving, client-defending itch, albeit not to the extent as previous games. Fortunately, the music is also still amazing. I’d even go as far as saying that Apollo Justice has one of the best soundtracks in the series, even rivalling the first Ace Attorney game. Just go and listen to the Objection! theme from this game. My god, it’s… glorious. While the characters themselves are lacking, their sprites are still as vibrant as they’ve ever been. Apollo Justice also completely solves one of the biggest problems I had with the original trilogy. Game Overs are now much less brutal. Upon exhausting the judge’s patience and getting a game over, instead of being sent aaaaaaalllll the way back to the start of the trial, you’ll be sent back to the last cross-examination. This means that although you’ll probably have to do some backtracking, you don’t have to hold the B button down to skip past a Shakespearean Play’s worth of text. In my opinion, this is the perfect balance. It still punishes people who just blind guess while making the moments in which the game rejects your perfectly valid logic much less frustrating.

I’m not sure who to recommend this game to. Newcomers to the series will probably find themselves alienated and will miss all the juicy easter eggs and references to the original trilogy, and avid fans of the series will probably walk away disappointed after the phenomenal Trials and Tribulations. I must stress that I don’t think Apollo Justice is a bad game. I still had plenty of fun playing it. The witty jokes are still there, the epic music is still there, and the kickass trial sections are still there. But you can tell that Capcom didn’t really know where to take the series from there. Apollo Justice is lacking a lot of the charm and character of the first three games, and some moments just don’t have the same “oomph”. Nevertheless, if you’re planning to play through the entire series, then I’d still suggest playing Apollo Justice, because although it isn’t a masterpiece Apollo Justice is still fine.

Pros:

  • Well-written characters(for the most part)
  • Epic soundtrack
  • Decent storyline
  • Great character designs and animations
  • Fairly long(around 20 hours)
  • The new gameplay mechanic, the “Perceive System” is interesting, fun to use, and doesn’t feel tacked on
  • Game overs are now much more fair, starting you off from the last cross-examination instead of forcing you to start from the beginning

Cons:

  • Investigation sections as a whole are still a pain to get through
  • Some perfectly valid logic can get you a penalty
  • The writing quality for most of the cases doesn’t hold a candle to the last three games. The only one that I felt was anywhere near as good was the second episode: Turnabout Corner.
  • Phoenix’s character is completely ruined, turning him into an uncaring, evidence-forging hobo
  • The game’s price is debatable at best

Nitpicks:

  • The science stuff is still tacked on, though it does get a bit more use
  • Apollo and Trucy have nowhere near the depth Phoenix and Maya had. It’s not that they’re bad characters, just uninteresting.

Verdict: 7/10

Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood Spoiler Free Review: Anime At Its Peak

Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood. A show heralded as one of, if not, the greatest anime of all time. So great, that I, a guy who NEVER rewatches anything(with the exception of Teen Titans) decided to go back and watch it a second time. And you know what? I’m so glad I did. I’ve always known it’s a seriously stellar show, but I really needed a reminder to let me know just how much of a masterpiece it actually is. Stuff I completely missed the first time around enhanced the already amazing experience. Characters I already loved were made even better. Scenes I remembered fondly were somehow even more potent than when I first viewed them. I loved every single second of the show’s sixty four episodes; so much so that I’m now here to tell you why you should watch it or rewatch it if you haven’t already.

Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood follows the story of two brothers in the country of Amestris: Edward and Alphonse Elric. It focuses on their search for the elusive “Philosophers Stone”, a stone with the supposed power to go against the universal law of equivalent exchange. When they were still children, they attempted to bring their mother back from the dead after she died of some sort of illness through forbidden human transmutation. However, the revival went awry and the brothers ended up losing parts of their body; for Ed, leg, and for Alphonse, his entire body. Edward manages to bring Alphonse back by sacrificing one of his arms, but only by forcing his body into a suit of armour, an empty shell incapable of most human senses(touch) and processes(sleep). After Ed is outfitted with an automail(mechanical) leg and arm, he joins the state military to aid in his quest. While the story starts off relatively simple, Ed and Al soon find themselves caught up in a conspiracy that threatens the entirety of Amestris and its people.

Fullmetal Alchemist’s story is really something you have to experience for yourself. There’s some deep and interesting commentary on both science and religion, some truly epic and clever moments, and more twists than you can shake a stick at. Unlike many anime, there are no filler episodes whatsoever, and not a single episode feels like a waste of time. There’s a clear beginning and end, and nothing at all interrupts the journey between those points. Despite this, the one problem I have with this series is that the pacing of the first season is incredibly slow. It’s not pointless, but it’s mainly setup for when everything kicks off in the series second season, and because of that, it can feel a bit(and ONLY a bit) like the story isn’t progressing.

Although the story is strong, it’s nowhere near as strong as Fullmetal Alchemist’s biggest strength: the characters. Every single character is interesting, likeable and developed throughout the story. Characters like the badass flame alchemist Roy Mustang and his loyal partner Riza Hawkeye, the psychopathic philosopher Kimblee, and the avaricious Greed are unforgettable. And those are only three of the many, many well-written characters in the Fullmetal Alchemist world. I haven’t even mentioned Scar, or Ling, or Hohenheim, or Mei, or the Chimeras, or the rest of the Homunculi or even the series’ main villain! Half of the cast isn’t even human, and yet they manage to be some of the most developed and multi-layered characters in history! Not only that, but every single one of them has a part to play. And when I say every single one, I mean: Every. Single. One. Even the nameless characters like the Amestrian soldiers are responsible for some of the most important moments in the series, landing finishing blows on major antagonists and saving main character’s lives!

This isn’t even taking into account the epic, fast and frantic fight scenes, the glorious animation and the phenomenal soundtrack! Everything manages to feel so fluid and refined in this show. I must have watched fights like Greed vs Wrath and Mustang vs Lust a million times, the latter of which is just one character spamming fireballs at another character. But it’s executed so well that it seems like the most awesome fight ever created! While it doesn’t have the most distinctive artistic style, it makes the most of what it has to create some extremely smooth and stylish scenes. And do I even need to talk about the soundtrack? The first opening alone is widely considered the greatest anime opening of all time, and all the other openings and endings are just as good in my opinion!

There are a few small nitpicks I have here and there. The pacing of the first season, a couple forgettable characters like Paninya and Sheska. But that’s pretty much all they are: nitpicks. Nothing is perfect, but Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood is arguably the closest thing to perfect the human race has created thus far. I’m not kidding when I say it’s possibly the best show I’ve ever watched. Just, drop everything and go watch it right now. I’ve done my best to sing the show’s praises, but you can only really understand what I’m saying when you see the show for yourself. Alchemy may not be an all-powerful art, but whatever power was used to make this masterpiece certainly is.

Verdict: A+

Watch it on Netflix: http://www.netflix.com/