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Online By Design: POWER/RANGERS

I love the Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers (MMPR). When I was about three years old or so when the original series of Power Rangers aired on TV, I was OBSESSED with it! I watched every TV show episode, I played the video games, I bought the movie on VHS, and I even dressed as the Blue Power Ranger for Halloween during my first year of kindergarten. If you were a child growing up in the 90s, you watched the Power Rangers. It's like being a fan of Sailor Moon, Pokemon and Digimon - everyone watched it.

Recently, a new "bootleg" fan-made version of MMPR called "POWER/RANGERS" was created that presented a more dark and gritty aspect to the franchise. The 14-minute film stars James Van Der Beek as Rocky (the second Red Power Ranger) and Katee Sackhoff as Kimberly (the first Pink Power Ranger). 

By no means is the film perfect, but it is an interesting take on a new tone to the superheroes we grew up with. I quite enjoyed it - I'll always have the memories of the original show/movie and I can distinguish between the original material and a separate creations. (I'm look at you Resident Evil movies!)  

There's word that the original creator of MMPR might try (or is trying) to remove the fan-made film. Hopefully he doesn't; it's a short film that's getting people to talk about Power Rangers again and be reminded of the nostalgic factor. Besides, with a new Power Rangers movie coming out in 2016 with Lionsgate, why ruin the free promotion and good PR?

You can check out the POWER/RANGERS bootleg film below:

Tuesday Tunes #17

A little music is always a great way to perk up your Tuesday. The Tuesday Tunes series is one I like to go back to every now and then. It's not a requirement, but a nice feature of songs to check out in case you've never heard of them before. I like music and I like finding new songs I can add to my playlist to play on repeat.

As a reminder about Tuesday Tunes, I find find three videos online that has music as a focus. It can be a music video, a parody, a clip from a movie or any other video where music is key part. You can check out the Tuesday Tunes tag to check out all the other editions of the series over the years.

Here are the three videos I choose today:

1. "Something Big" by Shawn Mendes
2. "Bat Romance" by OA Skywalker (a Batman and Lady Gaga parody)
3. "Love Me Like You Do" by Ellie Goulding


Top 10 Scariest Locations In Horror Video Games
A survival-horror video game is nothing without its environments. The music, the buildings, the creatures that lurk in the shadows - it all plays a part in how truly terrifying a game can be. Without the right creepy area for a hero to explore, you might as well just be going through the motions of the story. The extra touches make all the difference!

I have a guilty pleasure for a good horror video game. I can't resist finding a new game and getting into the story; battling the monsters and getting scared every once in a while. There are a few places in video games that have caused me to jump more than once and I couldn't help but think about which ones are my favourites. I've decided to rank my ten favourite scary locations in video games. Let's start with #10...

Note: This is a personal list of my favourite locations, so you may have your own choices. Also, I've excluded general locations of cities (i.e. Raccoon City from Resident Evil, Silent Hill) as they contain multiple scary locations. This list is set for specific places, buildings, areas and mansions.

10. Barrows Mansion - Clock Tower: The First Fear
A creepy mansion secluded in a forest is a bit of a cliche nowadays as a horror trope. However, when I was a young kid playing the original Clock Tower, I was petrified. The Barrows Mansion is an ominous and dilapidated building with many twists and turns that set out to kill the main heroine, Jennifer Simpson, at every turn. Plus, we can't forget the serial killer with the large pair of scissors! My teachers always told me never to run with scissors and this video game may be one of the biggest reminders why I never did.

9. The Forest - Slender: The Eight Pages
I'm not a nature person. I don't tend to hike through the woods or go out camping on a hot summer day; I'd much rather enjoy some time playing a video game or a night out. One of the reasons may be how creepy the woods are at night. Slender: The Eight Pages reminded me how scary it is to be out at night, lost and lonely in the woods with the fear that someone may pop out to scare you. Sure, playing a game of manhunt in the woods with your friends is all well and good, but finding pieces of paper with warning messages of a killer would freak me out.

8. Himuro Mansion - Fatal Frame
This may be a simple explanation for why Himuro Mansion made its way onto the list. There are ghosts...lots and LOTS of ghosts. You can see them. They come out of the walls, move through the hallways, stand on the rafters. There are ghosts everywhere and it's apparently a normal thing. The mansion has a sordid history with death and anyone who ventures there is practically destined for a gruesome murder. I mean the only thing that protects you is a camera and yet the ghosts keep coming. Fatal Frame is a scary game and for the first entry in the series, Himuro Mansion set the tone for more ghostly adventures to come.

7. Moyer's Lumber Mill - Deadly Premonition
Deadly Premonition is more of a quirky investigation drama than an outright horror video game. However, whenever Agent York would visit a crime scene and enter the Other World, the tone would change and the monsters would come out to play. From all the different locations, the Lumber Mill serves as the scariest location. It's where York encounters the Raincoat Killer, where he ventures deeper into the mystery, and a crime scene that was more bloodier than the first few locations in the video game.

6. Bart's Department Store - Condemned: Criminal Origins
Mannequins creep me out. I don't mean the headless mannequins you see in most retail stores at the mall. It's the ones with the plaster heads that almost look too lifelike. As someone who has worked in retail and during the late shifts, mannequins are creepy and this level in Condemned: Criminal Origins still scares me. The video game as a whole is terrifying and this level in particular is one of the reasons why it took me years to finish this game.

5. Underground Facility - The Evil Within
The Evil Within is hard to pin down in defining a location. I won't spoil the major twist or plot points to the story; you can get a better idea from reading my video game review. But, if there was one place in particular, I would choose the underground facility where you encounter the sharp traps and the spider-like monster. Whenever I play survival-horror video games, I get uncomfortable when the character enters a sewer or a dark underground area because I know that things are about to become intense and the monsters are sure to come out.

4. Freddy Fazbear's Pizza - Five Nights At Freddy's
Who knew a pizzeria could be so scary? Five Nights at Freddy's takes place at a children's entertainment centre where a few animatronic costumes go haywire and set out to kill the gamer. It's not just the animals that make the game terrifying, it's the location. Let alone that you have to use a surveillance camera to watch every part of the building, but it's a dark and massive location with many unnerving posters and props hanging everywhere. Why couldn't someone just turn on a light?

3. The Spencer Mansion - Resident Evil
Resident Evil is one of the first survival-horror video games I played as a child. The zombies scared me to the point that I had to have my brother in the room to play the game. The Spencer Mansion is a large building located in the woods not far from Raccoon City. As compared to the other mansions on this list, the Spencer Mansion holds many traps and monsters popping up in every room and every hallway to stop the player. The building of the Spencer Mansion only scratches the surface of the true horrors it holds.

2. Mount Massive Asylum - Outlast
Similar to a large mansion in the woods, the asylum is a common trope in horror video games. Outlast, on the other hands, is a terrifying story in part to the sordid history, and recent destruction, of its asylum. Mount Massive Asylum is falling apart at the seams and the patients are running wild, either tearing the building apart or looking to murder the main character. Countless people are dead and it shows; the asylum is dark, menacing and it never lets you forget that there is no safe way out.

1. Toluca Prison - Silent Hill 2
Silent Hill is a scary video game series. No matter which entry, there are plenty of different locations and stories that are meant to mess with the mind and the senses. Since there are many locations within the town of Silent Hill that could be included in this list, I only chose the one that still gives me the creeps. Toluca Prison in Silent Hill 2 is home to many terrifying creatures and dark hallways that James Sutherland has to encounter. Silent Hill 2 is the best in the series and with horror locations like this, I can see why.

What are your favourite scariest locations in video games? Share your thoughts in the comments below.