July Favorites

Wow this month went by fast! And I sure have accumulated a collection of favorites. From video games to books – let’s get nerdy this month.

Favorite #1 – The Wolf Among Us (video game)

When I was at the library, I was actually hoping to find Fallout because I started to have a hankering for a new game. Instead, I saw The Wolf Among Us – a story-telling game I had seen the YouTuber, Pewdiepie, play a long time ago. I remember really enjoying the story and wanted to give it a go. It’s a graphic-novel inspired video game, developed by TellTale Games that have already prospered off of other graphic-novel related games such as The Walking Dead. The gameplay is a variance of uncovering clues, fighting, and, most importantly, making choices that ultimately change your gameplay experience. The plot line isn’t an original idea – putting folklore characters in modern-day society. Shows such as Once Upon a Time explore that aspect of storytelling. But the way the creators decide to go about the story is unique.

After an exile of all folklore and fantasy creatures, these abandoned individuals moved to New York where they created their community, Fabletown. Unfortunately, they became worse off than ever. Financially struggling, the creatures of Fabletown hold resentment and distrust towards their appointed government and fall prey to scamming that seeks to destroy their foundation. A slaughter of magical creatures sets off a chain of events that start to uncover corruption and the true state of their community. The game is told from Bigby Wolf’s point of view which, surprise, is that of the legendary big bad wolf. Appearing human, he acts as sheriff to Fabletown. Unfortunately, his shady past doesn’t make the creatures trust him and he battles whether he wants to change or fall back in his ways throughout the entire game that’s ultimately up to the player. Based on what you discover and how you react to other characters, the story unfolds and you get to create an opinion of the events.

I enjoyed this game because of the ability to make decisions that can create my own unique story and the lovability of the diverse cast of creatures. The incorporation of folklore that spans all cultures makes it a true gem among the fantasy-world based plot lines out there. It never stops to amaze me how unpredictable it becomes as you unravel the story and the best cliff-hangers. The writers definitely knew what they were doing.

Favorite #2 – Ashfall by Mike Mullin

Being in Wyoming, the super volcano at Yellowstone is something that piques my interest. The fact that it could send us into another ice age is quite daunting. Ashfall depicts what could happen if this very thing happened. Told from a 16-year-old typical teenage boy, Alex, it spans a journey of what it means to be human, how it feels to lose it, and love. The day the eruption occurred, Alex was at home alone after snobbishly declining his uncle’s invitation to visit him in Illinois. Saying goodbye to his family, he didn’t know it would be his last. Determined to find his family, Alex crosses dangerous territory, facing the terror of other people and starvation.

I love this book because it really touches a spectrum of emotions in times of hardship that books rarely can do. It was such an incredible story that I stayed up well past midnight to continue reading it. I loved seeing Alex grew from a gloomy teenager to a strong young man. There were times I held my breath and times I wanted to scream in frustration and times I felt the utmost gloom about their future. But Mullin leaves just enough to always spark a glimmer of hope within the reader. It was hard but it was definitely worth the journey. Click here for Mike Mullin’s website.

Favorite #3 – Scola Dondo (YouTuber)

Scola Dondo is a personal trainer from the UK who has taken to YouTube to spread her infinite wisdom on fitness and health. Having lost 50 pounds, she now passes along great advice and shares fantastic recipes and products to improve one’s wellness. She also does workout videos that include dancing. I have never had as much as fun working out as I did attempting to shake my booty in the middle of my room with Scola pumping some good music. In her videos, she is light-hearted and not afraid to be a goof. She tries to make you comfortable and encourages body-love.

I love Scola’s video because they are unique and always inspiring. Doing videos like Motivational Mondays really remind me why I’m trying to become a healthier person. In my self journey to love my own body, Scola has helped me build the confidence I’ve always wanted. I would highly recommend her to anyone that wants to change up their current situation or get an extra cheerleader.

I hope that some of this might become your favorites as well