Isn’t he cool?! Yes folks its Tidus from the game “Final Fantasy X”. Not my favourite game out of the series, but Tidus just happens to be one of my favourite characters (next to Cloud Strife, Vincent Valentine, Sephiroth, Squall Leonhart to name a few). I was absolutely stoked when I found out that Kotobukiya were releasing a new action figure based on this character. It seems that they were releasing 3 characters from some of the popular series (with the exception of VII as they released 4+). With Final Fantasy VIII they released the action figures of Squall Leonhart, Rinoa Heartilly and Selphie Timet (sp?); Final Fantasy VII figures were Sephiroth, Vincent Valentine, Tifa Lockhart and Cloud Strife (based on the updated ‘look’ given to each character by the Advent Children movie, plus a second Cloud Strife figure that came with his bike, Fenrir); and now Final Fantasy X figures Tidus, Yuna and Auron. My current collection is limited to Cloud Strife, Vincent Valentine and Sephiroth. I had every intentiong of picking up a Squall Leonhart figure, but with this new release I’m aiming to get Tidus first! The decision is the next part – where to buy? I actually first became aware of Tidus’ existence when visiting my usual anime online store, Tamarket, and found him on the action figures page. Tamarket were asking for $55 (AUD) for him. Most likely the shipping and handling costs would end up being anywhere between $10 – $15 which would make the total cost come to anywhere between $65 – $70. Its not bad really, but I figured I could do better. So I went on a search and ended up at two places – HobbyLink Japan and Akadot Retail. HLJ had the figure in stock since June, whereas Akadot has only just got the item in, so now I have the opportunity to compare and decide. I’ve ordered from Akadot before, that’s where I got Cloud Strife from. He was packaged well and it arrived fairly quickly despite me choosing the slower method of shipping that they had. I’ve also ordered a lot from HLJ, including Sephiroth, and they too package their stuff extremely well so I know they come highly recommended. So onto the price war. At HLJ the Tidus figure is 3900Y. If I was to send it via their cheaper shipping rate (880Y) it would come to a total cost of 4680Y. In translation (according to the XE site) the total price in Australian dollars is approximately $54. At Akadot Retail the Tidus figure is $23.99US. Shipping cost is $18.10US which brings the total up to $42.09US. Translate this into Australian dollars and it comes out at approximately $56. Wow, a whole difference of $2!! Since its such a small difference it means I have a choice of either ordering it from one or the other. If I order it from HLJ, I can use their paypal option and it gets paid when I have money in the bank. They usually take around 4 days before the final cost is calculated and they request payment, so ordering now would mean that by payday (which is this Thursday) I should be able to pay for it. If I order from Akadot Retail, however, only accept payment via VISA, which for me is usually a burden. Though this doesn’t really rule out ordering from them. At the moment I’m still deciding because this payday is going to be really tight on the budget. I’ve got a couple of big bills to pay, some payments to make up for, a birthday present to buy, a dinner that I’ll be going to as well as the usual mortgage and loan payments. *sigh* If only there weren’t all these great things to buy, then I wouldn’t have anything to worry about!
With the new “Widgets” that has been an addition to WordPress, I’ve been having fun searching for different widgets that I’d like to add to the site. So far I’ve added just a couple, one that is linked into Performancing Metrics which is kind of a stats type of thing for blogs, and the other widge is one called Now Reading, which lets me show what books/manga I’ve read, am currently reading or are about to read. Pretty nifty so far. There are quite a few interesting widgets out there that I could add, though the one I’m looking for to be turned into a widget is something like a “Now Playing” widget that links to my winamp player. There are a lot of plugins for that but most plugins need to be re-inserted into the theme template should you change your theme, whereas if you use a widgetised version, its automatically inserted into a widget-compatible theme! I’ll keep searching for one anyway… Update: Just signed up to Last.fm and have added a “Scrobbles” widget which shows the last 5 songs I’ve listened to on my Winamp player! 🙂
Yesterday I received the last of the cds I had ordered from overseas. I’ve been ordering a lot in the past few months and unfortunately I’ve put myself into some debt with other things, so there has not been any further orders made and this was the last one to be received. Tohoshinki, also known as TVXQ and DongBangShinKi, are a korean boy band created by the production giant over there – SM Town. This is their latest release and unfortunately I wasn’t really all that impressed by it. I guess I was hoping for something similar to their release of “Rising Sun”, with a more edgier beat to it than most of their other releases, but because they are a manufactured band, then it was going to be pretty obvious that this was not going to be another edgy tune. Instead we’re given yet another boppy-poppy-happy-go-lucky type tune that sounds like it was aimed at kindy kids. The thing is that this group has potential to move into a higher bracket with their dance moves and great harmonies, yet, they don’t really seem to have any control over what they can do. I’m kind of hoping that they will be given an opportunity down the track, say when the reach their mid-twenties (which isn’t far away for some band members) that they can move away from SM-Town and create their own style and look. But only time will tell. This particular CD that I received also contained a DVD which had the PV (promotional video) clip as well as a ‘behind-the-scenes’ clip. While the latter clip showed them messing around and enjoying themselves, the actual PV they seemed rather lacklustre and not terribly enthusiastic. It might have just been the way they did the cilp, but to me they just didn’t seem all that interested in doing the video. If you’re a big fan, then by all means go ahead and get this CD, otherwise it might be best to wait for them to release another ‘Rising Sun’ type of song (which I’m hoping they will do again one day).