Saturday, September 24, 2016

Listed: 5 Podcasts You Should Be Listening To

The following podcasts are free and under a specific category so when I say "you should be listening to", I'm saying "you should be listening to under these categories". There are so many podcasts I could recommend, but let's limit ourselves to these five first.

Isn't it just amazing how you can get immersed in a good read or become transfixed by a movie that holds you at the edge of your seat? As a horror/suspense fan across all mediums, I try to get the best as much as I can, sometimes even paying premium just to answer the need for a lingering scare.

With so many outlets to choose from, I think I've discovered one of my favorites - podcasts. The options are endless as you can access a podcast via iTunes (Podcast App), Spotify, Podbean, and a lot more. If I had to make a guess, around 90% of podcasts are free, with the exception of bonus content, long study podcasts, and the like.

I've been interested in audiobooks for a while before getting into podcasts, and I must say that with the right conditioning and cast, the experience will be incredible. Here are my current favorites:

1. The NoSleep Podcast

Honestly, there are not enough positive words I can use to describe this gem. There have been multiple nights when I just couldn't stop listening, tapping next after each episode for hours on end. One of the main reasons I am completely hooked is that their narrators and voice actors are 100% on point. They set the mood so well that it adds atmosphere to the story, increasing the tension and thrill of the experience.

It's hard to choose a favorite with such an amazing set of episodes, so it's safe to say that no matter which episode you choose to listen to, it's guaranteed you'll be getting the best.

They offer the podcast episodes for free, though they do have a paid subscription available for those who want extra content, additional stories, and full episodes/series to listen to for just $19.99. The free episodes are already amazing though.

2. Lore

Another incredible podcast, Lore is one that offers true tales of horror, mystery, and legends that seek to disturb. From talks about Queen Mary and murders made by the Royal Family, to tales about fishermen becoming lost at sea and leaving their women in the hands of a huge, mysterious man, Lore is a podcast best listened to in the wee hours of the night straight on to early morning.

Lore is narrated and written solely by Aaron Mahnke, a man with a soothing yet deep-set voice that gets you in the mood in a snap. When I first discovered this podcast, I was mainly smitten with his voice. Upon listening to a few more episodes though, his voice was icing to the already sweet cake of stories.

I look forward to listening to his stories every time a new episode comes out, and they're always interesting ones. Imagine a kid coming home from school expecting a package to arrive, then find the package in his bedroom in all its splendor. That's me when listening to Lore.

3. Risk!

This podcast airs tales people never thought they'd tell in public, told by the very people who've experienced them. Risk! covers everything from heartbreak, sex, gender identity, getting drunk, embarrassing moments, and even dark secrets people have been keeping for years. There's never really a dull moment with this one, as their host is a jolly guy and the people they have on the show are stand-up comedians and people who know how to bring an audience together.

The first Risk! episode I got to listen to involved a gay man's sexual encounters on the road and a woman's first time participating in an orgy (I know, stuff you'd think would be inappropriate). It was more on the people and their experience that made me want to listen to more episodes, and like I said, there's never a dull moment here. With colorful stories told by colorful people, you're definitely in it for the ride.

4. Knifepoint Horror

Like supernatural suspense? This is the podcast for you. Told by Soren Narnia, a man with a voice that attempts to shed light on the story lead's emotions, Knifepoint Horror is a simple, one-man podcast about horrific tales.

Admittedly, some episodes can be a bit dull, but the chances of you choosing that particular bore is 2/10. I've only heard a few episodes from this one, and I find listening to Knifepoint in the afternoon or morning is the best time.

5. Stuff They Don't Want You to Know

One of my early favorites, STDWYTK (let's just use this, okay?) talks about everything the government and scientists could be trying to keep from public knowledge. There's talk about UFOs, cannibalism, Cold War, human experiments, and many others. There's not much else I could tell you about the podcast as the title is pretty self-explanatory.

I'm really into conspiracies and government secrets too, and that's why I became attracted to STDWYTK. They also have a video podcast channel around the same topics if that's your cup of tea.

My love for podcasts is growing, and I can't wait to discover more channels to dive into every day. Do you listen to podcasts? What are your favorites? I'd love to add more to my library!

Podcast channels above are from iTunes/Podcasts App. I'm pretty sure they have their own sites as well so you can check them out via search. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Stuck in the middle

I used to be addicted anime. I'd download heaps of online references whose style I wanted to emulate, and for a time, I was doing fine. That came to a halt when I discovered watercolor painting.

Once I got into it, I decided to buy a few materials like water brushes, traditional paintbrushes, acrylics, gouache, watercolor tubes, Sakura pan watercolors - I just kept hoarding. After that, I was hooked with journaling and buying planners (they're pretty expensive rin pala!). I then bought a LOT of materials to decorate my new baby, from stickers to stamps, from custom refills to paper tapes - you name it. 

After that little period, I was given an iPad Pro to play with and so I shifted back to doing digital things, like logos, portraits, sticker designs, and the like. A few weeks ago, I began to miss watercolors and brush calligraphy, and went back to doing that.

Yesterday though, I found myself in the middle of a forest. I was in the middle of everything I loved to do, and I was lost. Lost is a mild word to describe my dilemma, honestly. It's a battle I've lost to over and over for years, practically ever since I started college. As cheesy as it sounds, I often ask myself what I really want to focus on. It seems like I know how to do numerous things, but I'm not incredible at any of them.

If you check my Instagram, my feed is all over the place. There's food, there's watercolor paintings, there are letterings and brush work... which one is my own?

The problem includes who I am as an artist. Am I a blogger, or a digital artist? I can be both, but then, if I am both, and an offer comes by that seeks to hire a person for each role, which do I choose? I've faced this dilemma before, and it wasn't an easy choice to make.

Yeah, I get it - I'm still young and figuring things out for myself, yada yada yada. I'm just a little concerned over the fact that some of my friends have already found their focus when I'm still blindly running around.

I'm seriously asking for advice here. What should I do first? I have plans written down, but they're also all over the place. 

Listed: 3 Short Indie Games

As many of you are aware, I love playing computer, console, & mobile games. My favorite genres differ, but most usually involve action, simulation, shooters, and adventure. There's just something about putting yourself in someone (or something) else's shoes that reek of adventure.

I've browsed many different gaming sites like Steam and IndieDB, and I live for updates. If a new game comes out and it's worth the price, I'm on board. I also usually do a review for them, especially if I find it interesting and worth the money and time. (If you'd like, take a look at my review for Insurgency and Pewdiepie's Legend of the Brofist. The first one is a First-Person-Shooter or FPS, and the other is a Pixel Platformer.)

One site that I've been getting my games from is, a really nice place to get some of the best indie games for free (or paid), for different operating systems. Don't worry if you aren't much into games - there's always one that'll spark your interest. Hopefully, you'll find at least one from this little post. :)

1. Let's Play Simulator 2016

This game's rules are simple: one, reach 1 million subscribers, two, make sure your money doesn't go below zero, and three, make sure you have enough knowledge of a wide variety of games, their developers, and their genre.

The game took me about 3-4 hours to complete excluding breaks. While the nerd in me doesn't have enough information to have played a smooth game, it sure helped. If you want to get a taste of how Youtube works on the surface, you should check this game out.

Download Let's Play Simulator 2016

2. Be Aware of Your Surroundings

I actually thought the game was glitching on me for the first few minutes, only to realize that I should've been paying attention. That's exactly what this game is about. Please just download and experience the game - wouldn't want to ruin it for yah.

Download Be Aware of Your Surroundings

3. Hot Date

All you have to do for this game is to ask (and be asked) questions, like you would on a real date. Oh, yeah. Not that this isn't real. Haha. Simple graphics, straight-to-the-point gameplay - Hot Date is a fun twist on speed dating. The dude-dog has a bit of an attitude as well, but it's nothing you can't handle (*wink).

(I have mixed feelings about this one - probably because I've never speed dated before - but it's a fun, short game to pass the time if you have any to spare.)

Download Hot Date

I hope you found this first "Listed" post worth your time! This is a new section of the blog that I think  you'll find interesting. It won't matter if it lists 3, 7, or 10 plus items - as long as it's something worth listing, it'll find its way here.

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