Ph LEVEL Review: Sonic Mania


To say the hype surrounding Sonic Mania has been considerable, would be quite the understatement. The game started as a fan-game, with a dedicated group of players coming together to take matters into their own hands, and create a true-to-form Sonic the Hedgehog game in the vein of the classics, using new and older content to craft intricate levels, with updated sprites.

However, SEGA got word of the project and it was quickly ordered a cease-and-desist. Except, it wasn’t. Instead, SEGA snatched up the developers and started working together with them, noticing a rare opportunity, and taking full advantage of of the situation to create a great game. Did it work out? Hit the jump to find out.

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Ph LEVEL Review: Ghost in the Shell


Ghost in the Shell has been one of the most divisive films of at least the last decade, if not further. It’s been a modern-day masterpiece of cyberpunk marketing and vision. Partnerships with bionics companies, and hacking competitions. Tech demos of much of the “concept” tech used in the film, that is actually being developed in our reality. It’s been an incredible ride, that has been completely overshadowed by a continuing plague across Hollywood: whitewashing.

Ever since the initial casting of Scarlett Johansson as Motoko Kusanagi, known simply as the Major in this film, occurred, the people of the world have been up in arms. Another case of Hollywood taking a Japanese property, with what many believe to be Japanese characters, and replacing them with white actors. Truthfully, I grew up with Ghost in the Shell. Watching the film on HBO at 2am when I was 13 years old felt dangerous, and that world was so new to me, it was breathtaking. So, when the casting news dropped, I was disappointed. But then I began to think, and I re-watched the original film, and it occurred to me that many of the characters that are predominantly Japanese are portrayed that way in the film.

Hit the fold to see my spoiler-filled review of the film, and my thoughts on the casting, characters, and updates to the story for the film.

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