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I am 36 years old, make $66,900, live in Portland OR and work as a Data Coordinator.
Section Zero: Background Hello all, happy hoildays! I stumbled upon this subreddit not long ago and have enjoyed the commentary and experiences everyone's shared. Wanted to add another perspective from a mid-30s first-gen American. I've had some missteps regarding careers and finances, but I feel like I'm in a slightly better place now. I tried YNAB in the past but I wasn't consistent enough with it. These days I use Mint to monitor my finances and have a "Finance Friday" each month to review all my accounts and spending. I currently live with my partner TJ and his dog RR. We do not combine finances, but he has been unemployed since March. I have helped him with some bills and basic necessities here and there until he finds his next job or career. My current financial goals are to just maintain a status quo and not get any debt until pandemic times are over. Then I will focus on a house remodeling fund and savings for taking care of my parents. Growing up, what kind of conversations did you have about money? Did your parent/guardian(s) educate you about finances? My parents taught us about money from a frugal perspective. They are immigrants who worked in food service/factories. There was always this “save save save” mentality. Even when they started their own small business, we saved like there was no tomorrow. In high school, my calculus teacher bought us all “The Millionaire Next Door” book and had us read it as an assignment - that was my first structured introduction to finances. Did you worry about money growing up? No, there was always food on the table and a roof over our heads. I knew that our extended family would support us if needed. Was there an expectation for you to attend higher education? Did you participate in any form of higher education? If yes, how did you pay for it? Yes. My dad didn’t finish the high school-equivalent in their country, while my mom did finish high school, but no college. My older and younger siblings took a different path in life after high school. I am the first and only in my family to graduate from college. My parents covered all tuition for my two bachelor degrees with the agreement that I support them fully during their retirement and send them gifts/extra money whenever I can. I feel very lucky and privileged that they were able to provide that education for me. At what age did you become financially responsible for yourself and do you have a financial safety net? 24 when I went on a work holiday abroad. My family was always available to help when needed, but the experience abroad helped me stand on my own feet. As an adult, I also inherited that “save” mentality and put a lot of my earnings towards savings. I didn’t date until my 30s, lived frugally, didn’t go out to eat/hangout with people, shopped thrift stores, and had very few hobbies. I am starting to “live a little” now though. Do you or have you ever received passive or inherited income? Aside from the tuition, my parents have helped with a down payment for my first house and living costs during periods of unemployment. Section One: Assets and Debt Retirement Balance If the place I was working at offered a 401k, I would always contribute up to the company match. I started my IRA in my mid-20s and would try to contribute the yearly max. I've stopped that the past 2-3 years though. My Other Brokerage is some play money, but I got tired of staring it and switched to index funds. I haven't contributed anything to it in a few years.
401k: $34,127 (5% company match on contributions)
Brokerage: $22,421 ESPP
Roth IRA: $40,615 VTIVX
Rollover IRA: $15,760 VTTHX
Other Brokerage: $7,235 VTI
Coinbase: $1,286 ETH (mostly just playing around with it)
Equity if you're a homeowner Purchased my first home for $382,000 with 20% down, right before lockdown earlier this year. Perfect timing, right?? I plan to live here until my retirement. My parents contributed $15k while I used most of my savings for the rest.
Current Equity: $80,371
Savings account balance: $3,073 Checking account balance: $7,800 Credit card debt: I charge everything on my credit card for the points, then pay it off each month using my checking account balance. Student loan debt: Traditionally no student loan debt as mentioned in Section Zero. Section Two: Income Income Progression (listed as gross income with cost of living area): High School
$11/hourMCOL - Helped with small family business.
College and first “career” job
$12-19/hour MCOL - I did events/banquet serving after classes and had an internship doing software administration.
$22/hour MCOL - Junior web developer. I realized after a year that programming was not my calling.
Mental health break
$12/hour LCOL - Work holiday abroad. I got a steady banquet server job for that whole time. It was enough to live minimally in a hostel, do weekend trips, WOOF and figure my life out.
College (again) and second “career” job
$12-15/hour LCOL - Decided to go back to school for a different bachelor's degree. While pursuing that degree, I worked at hotels and events as a banquet server again. I also did “search engine evaluation” whenever there were tasks available.
$36,000/year salary LCOL - Software administrator at a casino after graduation.
$39,000/year salary LCOL - Systemsanalyst at same casino. I left after 2 years, feeling disillusioned with the casino industry. I moved back home with my parents until I could get back on my feet again.
Third “career” jobs
$20/hour HCOL - Entry level advertising role. I was applying to all types of office jobs and that was my only bite.
$45/hour MCOL - Cold-called from a global company who needed someone with my software administrator experience from the casino job. It was an 8 month contract. Although I was starting to love my advertising job, the increase in pay was no question.
$65,000/year salary MCOL - After the contract ended and a few months of unemployment, I landed my current job at the same company. It is an “early career” role according to their job levels.
$66,900/year salary MCOL - Cost of living and merit increases after 2 years on the job. Pre-COVID we got a $5000 bonus each year. They have now stopped bonuses as well as all COL and merit increases.
Main Job Monthly Take Home: Monthly Net (paid bi-weekly): $2,758 Deductions:
Side Gig Monthly Take Home: No side gigs at the moment, but I am thinking of signing up on Upwork.com and doing Excel/data entry projects to help pay the mortgage. Other Income: TJ’s friend will be staying with us for a month in January, who will pay rent of $800 including utilities. Depending on how that goes, we may take on a roommate in the spare bedroom long-term. Section Three: Expenses Mortgage - when I bought the house, the plan was that I would charge TJ a portion of the mortgage costs as “rent”, but since his unemployment I am now covering it all myself. Regular Monthly Payment: $1677.57
Taxes & Home Insurance: $326.52
HOA: $30/year Retirement contribution: Nothing additional than what's been mentioned. Savings contribution: I used to do $50-100/month, but since COVID I’ve stopped contributing to my savings account. Investment contribution: None at this time. Debt payments: $100/month towards TJ's credit card balance of $2,307. Donations: $10-20/month, usually towards Omaze or Planned Parenthood. Utilities:
Natural Gas: $30-80/month
Xfinity internet: $60/month
Cellphone: On my parents plan. Subscriptions:
LinkedIn: $29.99/month for TJ’s job search - he’s found it very useful.
Amazon/Netflix/Hulu: We piggyback off family and friends’ accounts.
Nintendo Switch Online: 19.99/year
Gym membership: Pre-COVID I did Orangetheory for a year. I started to pick up free exercise equipment from Craigslist this year, so we have a small garage gym now and utilize YouTube exercise videos instead. Pet expenses: $10/month. TJ has stockpiled some Costco canned dog food before unemployment, but once that runs out I will likely cover the costs. We also started to make homemade dog food to help supplement. Car insurance: $460 every 6 months. Car is paid off. Regular therapy: I will start in the new year. Not sure what the costs are yet, but I will use my HSA to pay. Vitamins/Medications: $20/month Groceries & household items: $75/month Miscellaneous (eating out, house purchases, gifts, etc): $100/month Section Four: Money Diary Monday 6:30am Neighbor starts up their truck. We joke that it's our natural alarm clock. They idle for about 15 minutes before heading off. I go back to bed. 9am My real alarm goes off. I put the electric kettle on for some morning tea. While it's boiling, I do my morning routine: drink glass of water, take synthroid, use bathroom, brush teeth, quick shower. I then make tea - Jasmine Pearl English Breakfast with dark forest mix. I started ordering loose leaf tea in large amounts back in March instead of small bags or single serving packets. Seems more economical since I drink it daily. I let the dog out into the backyard so he can do his morning routine. 9:30am I go through my daily tasks for work. They entail checking processes and reports to make sure they ran successfully overnight. I then answer some emails and catch-up on Slack channels. 12pm Lunch is leftover roast chicken and quinoa from Saturday. I heat it up in the instant pot. Love that thing! Almost every meal of ours involves the instant pot. We hardly use the stovetop. We then walk the dog to the business park across from our neighborhood. There's a very short trail that runs along a drainage creek by the business park. It's quite muddy, but has a nice woodsy feeling. Over the summer, we saw sumac trees there as well. Free sumac spice! 1:30pm Department meeting on Zoom. Our director announces his resignation on the call. Everyone is shocked! Layoffs were announced for next year but this was not a part of it. I think it's a good move for him and he doesn't have to have this worry of layoffs over his head. 3pm I meet with an engineer from another team and talk about a data source they are in charge of. He helps me out in understanding it and we identify most of the fields that I need for a project I’m starting. 5:30pm I check in with my partner. He's been watching LinkedIn tutorials on internal recruiting, job coaching and general computeoffice skills. It's a career change that he wants to make - something where he can talk to and help people. He doesn't have a bachelor's, only an associates, and hopes these tutorials will get him a leg up in the job search. I sent him some entry level HR admin roles the other day and remind him to apply. I then heat up leftovers: homemade chana masala and rice. I add some butter and coconut milk to thin it out, so there's enough for both of us. 10:30pm I take some magnesium, vitamin D and Airborne. I say goodnight to the dog who sleeps in the office. Then I say goodnight to TJ. He sleeps in the spare bedroom on weeknights due to his snoring keeping me up. I'm a light sleeper while he is a pretty deep sleeper. Daily total: $0 Tuesday 9am I check Reddit Secret Santa. My match seems like a really good person. Not sure what to get, but most likely will purchase something off their wishlist. I wish I was more creative with my gift giving. 11am Meeting with business stakeholder. She submitted a few changes to an existing data process about a month ago. I make the change while on the call and have her test. Success! Marking it off the todo list. I love when we can finish things directly on a call. 12:30pm I come out of my office to make lunch. I notice my partner is not home. I check my messages and see that he's stepped out to pick up a few things. I ask for celery, carrots, and kombucha. $17. I make a quick charcuterie board for lunch: Costco salami, cheese, homemade hummus and Triscuits. It's a simple, fast meal that’s always in our rotation. 2pm My partner is back and we take the dog out for a walk and quick round of disc golf at a nearby park. We mask up and play only a few holes. Disc golf is a pretty frugal activity, you only need 2-3 discs to get started. TJ remarks that my throws are getting better, but then again they weren't great to start with. We talk about Christmas/Birthday gifts on the way back home since he was born on New Years Day. He mentioned snowshoeing but asked to not spend that much. I'll do some research! 5pm I think about personal career projects. Should I put up a portfolio of projects somewhere? I decide to try and pull some Yelp data. There’s not a lot of data points that I was interested in. Regardless, I tinker with it for an hour. TJ asks if I'm hungry. I said not so much, but felt thirsty. Maybe some ginger soup tonight? 7:30pm Dinner is served - ginger carrot soup made in the instant pot. We eat some rice crackers with it. Lately I feel like we've been eating more vegetarian dinners. It definitely helps stretch our food budget. We end the evening by finishing Fargo season 3 on Hulu. Daily total: $17 Wednesday 1:30am I'm woken up by the dog. He's been sneezing a lot and wheezes at random intervals. TJ doesn't have the money for a vet visit but I've offered to pay as long as he calls to make the appointment. I give the dog some coconut oil, rub his belly until he seems better and go back to bed. 7am Garbage day. We usually put it out the night before but I forgot. I get up to go, but TJ handles it. I think, at least. I'm too sleepy to pay attention and go back to bed. 9am I wake up and rinse some dishes that have piled up and put them into the dishwasher. We both grew up in households that had a home dishwasher, but forbade from using it. It was drilled into us that hand washing saves more water, unless you had a restaurant/industrial dishwasher. I think with modern home dishwashers, that's changed, so I wanted to try it out with our dishwasher and monitor the water bill. Don't have any dishwashing pods or powder, so I put some OxiClean in it. 12:30pm I overhear TJ on a call with a recruiting agency. It seems to be going well, lots of laughing. I heat up some taco lasagna that I freezer meal-prepped last month. 2pm Collaborate on a project at work with an engineer. My manager put me on this project since I was asking for an assignment on a more technical team. I'm learning tidbits here and there, but I don't feel like it's structured enough. 5pm I do an Orangetheory-At-Home workout and try to break a sweat. It's not the same as going to their studio. 6pm Charcuterie for dinner. Our fridge is full of store-bought and homemade pickles that go super well on a charcuterie board. Daily total: $0 Thursday 7am I wake up tired. The house has been feeling more cold, which woke me up a few times. We keep the temp at 72F during the day, at night around 68F since we thought the bedrooms keep the heat in pretty well. My mistake! 9am I do my usual morning routine and login to work. My team mostly spends the morning sending each other emojis. 11:30am Lunch today is mini quiche, frozen chicken and veggie entree, and hot dogs. Not the most cohesive meal, but it fills the belly. 12:30pm TJ heads out to his mailbox that's 30 minutes away. He is still waiting on his tax return and a 401k withdrawal. His taxes had to be filed by mail for some reason, then the IRS office shut down due to COVID. So he wanted to see if it arrived yet at the mailbox. He also takes the dog to the vet's urgent care on his way. They didn't have any regular openings available until the end of the year, and the dog seemed to be getting worse. I give TJ $40 to mail a gift package to a friend in France and also reiterate that I'll cover the vet bill when he gets it. 4:30pm I pay some bills, my favorite activity (not)! Sewer bill: $59.44 (billed every 2 months). Geico bill: $459.60 billed every 6 months. Then I follow up with my mortgage officer over email. I had sent her some documents for a refinance quote last week, but haven't heard back. Rates keep dropping, so I'm told, but what does that really mean? I do some research on realestate. 5pm TJ messages me and says he'll be back for dinner. I ask him to pick up some Popeyes via drive thru since we both don't feel like cooking today. Popeyes is currently our fancy “going out to eat” food. $24.17 for a 4pc dinner meal and a 2pc dinner meal. Daily total: $583.21 Friday 8:30am Busy morning at work. My phone is buzzing with emails and Slack messages. I try to answer them while I make tea. 10am Zoom Department happy hour. We reminisce about our director and then play those Jackbox party games. Some of them are hard! 11am TJ asks if he can make me anything for lunch. He suggests savory oatmeal, quick and easy. I tell him that I really appreciate him making meals/doing chores/etc without me prompting. We've been having conversations about "house project management" and mental load because I did most of the chores or I had to continually remind/tell him to do it. I'm really happy to see us progress on this front. I decide to work through my lunch break so I can end the day early. I don't often do that, but I'm ready to get the weekend started. 2pm I check on TJ in the spare bedroom and ask if the dog has been fed yet, since he was nipping at my feet. I notice something off about TJ and ask how he is doing. TJ is depressed about his personal life, career, finances. He doesn't know what to do, spends half the day meditating and reflecting on past trauma. I've been prodding him to get a therapist but he is confused about his insurance. He makes an appointment with a primary care doctor first. I feed the dog some homemade dog-friendly beef stew. 4pm My mom swings by the house (but doesn't enter). She currently works at a school who distributes free USDA food boxes since March. There's often many boxes leftover that would go to waste, so she will grab a box for us. Onions, potatoes, beets, turnips, eggs, cheese, butter, frozen veggies and frozen chicken. She also brought her vintage pasta maker. I asked last week if she ever used it these days and her reply was “no, feel free to have it”. I love pasta and noodles and figure it would be great to make it ourselves as a frugal hobby. 8pm We catch up on Mandalorian and watch silly Youtube videos before heading off to bed. Daily total: $0 Saturday 9am I open up my web browser and look at Craigslist and NextDoor for free stuff. I've been scouring for free landscape rocks, pegboards, and wood for house projects. I had this grand ambition to redesign our backyard. It faces our neighbor and currently the fence is pretty low. They can see into our kitchen and bedroom and we can see them. But y'know, COVID and going from dual income house to single income means it all has to be put on hold. So I've been looking for free items in the meantime. Over the past months, I've gotten planter pots, plant cuttings, a raised bed, stepping stones, all from free listings. I don't see anything worthwhile so I go and make some tea. 11am I look at Amazon and make some purchases for Reddit Secret Santa. A foodie kit, DVD of their favorite movie, and some cute pens for their writing hobby. $54. I hope they like it! 12pm TJ heats up leftover stir-fry for lunch for us. I put on some Binging with Babish and we watch how to make pasta. We have a plan - TJ makes the pasta, I make the sauce. Perfect date night activity at home. We watch some more videos on pasta and noodles to educate ourselves. 4pm I start prepping veggies. Big batch of onions, canned tomatoes, ground beef and butter in the instant pot. Meanwhile, TJ works on the pasta by following Babish's instructions. 7pm We gorge on fresh made pasta and bolognese sauce. It's so good! We end up watching Fargo. 11pm Usually I'll be in bed by now, but it's a Saturday and not tired yet (probably because of all that pasta). We play some Kirby's Dream Course on the Switch. Daily total: $54 Sunday 10am Quick walk around the neighborhood with the dog. He's on a new routine now with the medicine he's taking. It seems to be helping his breathing issues. 11am The pasta maker and flour is still out since we didn't clean up yesterday. There's some old pie crust in the fridge so I roll it out with the pasta machine for mini quiches. (Sally's Baking Addiction blog is my go-to place for her all-butter crust and quiche recipes btw). TJ helps by mixing up the eggs. 3pm I play some Genshin Impact (GI) on my phone while TJ plays Starcraft in the office. I don't usually play gacha games, but the Zelda BotW-style of GI appealed to me. A gacha game is a game with randomized characteitem boxes that you use real-money to purchase a “pull” or to spin the wheel. I know the gacha parts of the game can be a real money sink if you get addicted to them, it’s almost like gambling. My main team is Fischl, Bennett, Barbara and Noelle. I level up to AR 22 and look up free-to-play tutorials for the game. 6pm There's some leftover pasta from yesterday, enough for both of us. I throw in some roasted beets to round out the meal. We watch more Fargo while eating. Almost done with Season 3! 10pm I find a tour operator who offers a small, socially-distant snowshoeing tour up on the mountain. I reserve for two people - this will be TJ's Christmas/birthday gift. $75. Off to bed for another workday. Daily total: $75 Weekly Total: $689.79
Food + Drink: $41.17
Fun / Entertainment: $75
Home + Health: $59.44
Clothes + Beauty: $0
Section Five: Reflections Aside from the car insurance bill, this was a typical week for me, COVID or not. We make the majority of our meals at home and usually splurge on drive-thru/delivery once every other week. I may have overspent on the Secret Santa gift, but I don't often give gifts out to friends. It's not something our family does either. For TJ’s Christmas/birthday gift, we usually talk upfront about costs. I’ve gifted him fancy restaurant experiences the past 2 years, since we can share that experience, but obviously can’t do that now. Snowshoeing is a nice change of pace. The conversations with TJ this week have given me thought on how to approach him differently about finances and working together in a relationship. I’m still unsure about the future financially, particularly as my parents near retirement age and that TJ has pulled out his 401k to pay his debts. I don't know if I can support both my parents and TJ together, so I am finding ways to upskill and/or side hustles without becoming a workaholic or bogged down by stress. Writing this money diary was also the first time where I really paid attention to my past income and current income. I might be contributing too much into ESPP that could go towards the 401k or mortgage instead? I also seem to have been underpaid for what I did in past jobs, even in a LCOL area.
How porn stole 3 years, if not more, of my life. Please read this if you are struggling with porn adiction as bad as me.(X-post from r/NoFap)
I have been debating whether or not to post this, but I think I should. If only to help anyone who might be going down the same road I did. I discovered myself at a very young age. Some of my earliest memories are of touching myself during nap time in kindergarten. I always would go "take a nap" or "control my dreams" at least once or twice a day. It wasn't until I started to hit puberty that I learned what I was doing was called masturbating and that if I looked at naked women it would feel even better. So I started to steal my dads Maxim magazines and any movie that said it had nudity in it. Then one day at school I said to someone I wanted to see charecters from cartoons I liked naked. He told me there was porn of that on a thing called the internet. I was only vaguely aware of what the internet was back then. My dad had a computer but I would only play games on it like Monsters Inc pinball and Hoyle Casino. But now that I knew you could get porn on it, I knew I had to have my own. I begged my parents to give me a computer and a cable to connect with internet. They finally gave me a laptop computer around the time when a new thing called wi-fi was introduced. We got the house set up with wi-fi and I made my first web search. It was for pokemon xxx. I fell down the rabbit hole quick. I started looking for all kinds of porn and jerking off to it. It started to become an every day habit. Come home from school, jerk off to porn then move on with my day. Throughout all of this I was dealing with depression issues. Not necessarily caused by porn, there's a genetic history of depression on my moms side of the family, but it definitely added fuel to the fire. At around Jr high through high school I started having thoughts of suicide and even made a few attempts all the while I went deeper down the rabbit hole. My porn searches started to become more extreme. Hard-core bdsm, torture, vore, guro, s&m, and eventually it just wasn't taboo enough. I needed something illegal. I started looking at child porn. I never took any pictures my self. But eveytime CP was posted to 4chan, I would save it before it got deleted. I downloaded a tor browser and started searching the dark web for CP. Anything to get my fix. Whats worse is that I was even active on reddit at the time and was aware of the NoFap community. I just brushed it off as a bunch of weirdos. "Who would ever want to give up porn and masturbation?" I thought. Skip ahead to when I was about 21. My computer broke. I took it to get fixed and then a few days later when I came home from work my dad was there waiting for me. He told me to get into the truck and then told me why. He said the people I took my computer to had found child porn on it. They had reported me to the police and we were on our way to see a lawyer. He asked me how bad was it. I didn't lie. I just said "its really bad." I spent the next year under investigation out on bond. During that time I had no computer to look at porn on. But I had a 3DS that could. I was scared that if I looked at porn at home the police would find out. So I started looking at it on public wifi and jacking off in public bathrooms and at work. I ended up loosing my job because of this. We finally went to court and I pled guilty. The judge sentenced me to 10 years of adjudicated probation. That ment that if I could go 10 years without internet porn, the felony wouldn't be on my record. I didn't last a week. My probation officer asked me if I was struggling with probation. I said yeah I had slipped up and looked at porn a few times. The next day I was arrested and taken to jail. I spent a year in jail waiting to be sentenced. My lawyer said they wanted 10 years prison time but we eventually signed for 6 years. I spent 3 years in prison and the entire time I spent in there I thought about how I was going to get porn when I got out. While locked up I bought pictures of porn stars to jack off tO. I started trying to learn how to draw so I could make my own porn. I borrowed penthouse forum books that circulated around. I was put in a treatment program with other Sex Offenders (Side note: because I looked at porn instead of looking for a girlfriend, I had never had sex. Still haven't. So I'm a sex offender who has never had sex) and that's when the truth really sunk in. I had an addiction. By the time I was released on parole I was aware of my addiction and had tools to cope with it, but I wasn't ready to give it up yet. So I kept looking for porn with the intention to slowly ween my self off it. I bought porn dvds from an adult store where I live. I bought echi manga from bookstores. I ordered penthouse forum books from a catalog. Then it came time for my annual polygraph test. The previous year I took a sexual history polygraph. So I passed it. This one was a mantinence polygraph which ment they would ask me what I had been doing on parole. They asked if had looked at porn. I lied, said no, and failed the polygraph. I came clean to my PO and she said it was okay as long as I was trying to quit. I said I was and that was the truth. I threw away all my porn and continued to attend my SOTP meetings. Let's skip ahead to more recently. One of the conditions of my parole was that I couldn't have a phone with a camera. So I did the impossible and found a shitty flip phone with out a camera. I had that thing for 3 years before it just wouldn't recognize the cellular network anymore. I asked my PO if I could just get a cheap smartphone instead. She agreed but she would check it every month for anything inappropriate. I got my very first smartphone ever and I checked if I could access all my old online accounts after 6 years of inactivity. I could only get access to one. My reddit porn throwaway. I tried to get on my old main account, but it had been so long. I couldn't remember the password. I couldn't even access the old email account associated with it cause it had been deactivated do to fraudulent activity. So I made a new email and a new reddit account. I synced the throwaway to my new email and started using it to look at porn. But on my new main account the first sub reddit I subscribed to was NoFap. The storys here helped me realize its time to let go. So I deleted the only remnant of my past online life. I wish I could say that I'm "going 90 days strong WOOO" but I'm not. My longest streak has been 4 days no porn and only 3 days no masturbation. Right now my goal is just to make it 5 days with out looking. To any one still reading this please don't let your addiction get as bad as mine. Seek help. Now.
Winter had sucked all the color out of the world. The prairie in the glory of midsummer had been a surge of green, summer winds sending pulses through the tall grass, causing it to wave like an underwater kelp forest in a strong current. Now, however, it had relinquished its blooming majesty, its former radiance dulled to straw the color of a deerhide. The flowerheads were stripped of their colorful identities, appearing like sepia photographs of themselves; the ghosts of summer past. The sweetclover, which had extended from one horizon to the other back in June, covering the prairie in a blanket of gold, was now skeletonized, its broken-off stems rolling like tumbleweeds in the winter gales. Trevor was over it. Another South Dakota winter, another four months until the snows would cease and the ice would melt in the creek. In March and April, the spring blizzards would bury the world and on the subsequent sunny days, the combination of blue sky and white land would be startling, like finding oneself living in the center of a bicolored flag. But for now, a capricious midwinter thaw had left snowdrifts only in the prairie draws, on the north-facing ridges, in the shadows of the ponderosas that speckled the hills. And around the trailer, mud. In a few nights, a deep freeze would turn the sides of the tire ruts into knife edges, testing the suspension of any vehicle that took the approach too fast. Still, that was better than the loamy mud, which could imprison even a 4x4 until freezing cold or drying winds finally freed it. The view from the front porch could be gorgeous. Back in July, when the church group from Virginia had constructed a wheelchair ramp for the trailer, the evening sun had set the prairie on fire, its light reflected by a thunderstorm hanging in the sky as if by a puppeteer’s strings. “God almighty,” the youth pastor had exclaimed. But now, grays and browns mingled in a decidedly drab palette. Over at the little bird feeder, the goldfinches were no longer yellow-and-black exclamation points, but had acquiesced to dullness, dressed for a time of year when vibrant color seemed to be outlawed by some unseen authority. Trevor stared at the expanse of mud that spooled out from in front of the trailer and unwound into a ribbon that led over the hill toward the old sundance ground and, eventually, the paved road. He wondered if he would get out today. Always a calculation this time of year. Driving on the muddy channel that was his approach was out of the question; he would set a course across the grass, which would provide enough barrier to keep his tires from sinking in again. Two-tracks radiating out onto the prairie showed how many times he and his family had taken this course of action since the last snow. It felt ironic that their approach took them by far the long way around – heading north to go south; harder than it needed to be, like so much of life around here. But the way south was blocked by Roanhorse Creek. This wasn’t all bad; the creek provided nice wading in the summer and water for the horses for most of the year. It also gave rise to the only trees on the property, although the cottonwoods whose leaves whispered in the summer breezes now stood dumb and impassive, and resembled skeletal wraiths at nighttime. A horse would make it, of course. He could saddle up the buckskin, ride cross-country and be in town in twenty minutes. But that would be silly…he snorted at the ludicrousness of this thought. First of all, he had to go way beyond town today. And even if he were just going to his old job at the tribal building, was he supposed to just hitch it up outside for the day? Tie its reins to one of the smokers’ benches by the entrance? What was this, 1895? No, better not to risk TȟatéZi getting stolen or having some gang sign spraypainted on it or some shit. Besides, he needed to pull into his job interview looking halfway decent, not spattered with mud and smelling like horse sweat. Trevor regarded his truck, sitting smack in the middle of the sloppy mess. Fuck, he thought. Still, he didn’t really have a choice today. No job interview, no job. No job, no funds. Another calculation, but this one was straightforward. He went back into the trailer and made his way to his bedroom in the back, passing his brothers in the living room. One was sleeping on the couch and the other was crashed out in the recliner, oblivious to the flickering hearth of the muted TV. Let ‘em sleep today, Trevor thought. In the bedroom, he stepped across piles of clothes – some clean, some dirty – and over the miscellany of his life; a pile of old DVDs, a defunct gaming console, a canister of Bugler and squares of broadcloth for the tobacco ties he was supposed to make for ceremony, a scattering of empty Mountain Dew cans, a 24-pack of ramen, a basketball. He hunted around in his closet for the dressy clothes that he knew were there. He had worn them once, on the day of his high school graduation, three years before. And there they were; a purple button-down shirt, a solid black tie, and black chinos. Further rummaging found him a pair of brown loafers and a tan braided belt. He would look sharp for this interview – couldn’t hurt. Trevor took a quick shower. The hot water always took forever to come and once it did, didn’t last long. He got dressed hurriedly, glad the tie that had come as a set with the shirt was a clip-on, and ran a comb through his hair. It wasn’t long enough to do much with other than backcomb it a little with some hair gel, but he figured that looked better than not. He considered putting in big stud earrings to look extra fly, but decided again it; might not be the right look for the occasion. Now fully dressed and ready, Trevor took stock of his appearance. His summer tan was long gone and his skin was as pale as the white kids he had met during his one semester of college. The same change of season that had desaturated the prairie and garbed the birds in dull colors had undone all those days spent out in the badlands sun – working with the horses, swimming at the dam, helping keep fire at sundance. Too many French fur traders in his lineage. He recalled the book that his eighth grade teacher had assigned them – Part-time Indian or something – and thought, Yup, that’s me. Indian in the summer and wašiču in the winter, like changing plumage. Trevor envied his brothers their melanin. He had learned that word in one of his college classes and now thought of it nearly every day. Travis was a rich brown complexion even in the dark days of midwinter. Trenton was in between the two but had jet-black Lakota hair and definitely looked “ethnic,” enough to be followed around stores in the border towns. Trevor knew it was his privilege to be exempt from such treatment, but it bugged him nonetheless. He hadn’t asked to be light-skinned. His brothers called him žiží – a reference to his tawny hair. They had gotten into scraps over this, and Trevor even bloodied Travis’ nose in one such altercation. Once one of them had even called Trevor a “half-breed” but Trevor retorted with “Fuck you, boy, you got the same blood as me. Fuckin’ dumbass.” This seemed to put the issue to rest. Trevor’s brief stint at college had been at an out-of-state school, which now struck him as an ill-advised decision. At least South Dakotans had some experience with Natives. Even the East River kids had at least crossed paths with one at some point, and didn’t think of Indians as something from the pages of a dime novel. Trevor was the first Native in many years – maybe ever – to attend the small-town liberal arts college in a neighboring state. He thought the fact that the college was reasonably selective would mean that the students were smart enough not to ask dumb questions. He was wrong. The queries were predictable enough, clichéd even; Are you really Indian? (Yes) Do you speak your language? (No) Did you get in because you’re Indian? (Who knows? I’m pretty smart and got good grades.) Does the college have admissions quotas for Indians? (If it did, you’d think more would go here.) What’s it like on the reservation? (I don’t know; different.) Do you prefer “Native American”? (I find the question annoying, to be honest.) Do you like Leslie Marmon Silko? (Who?) Have you seen Dances with Wolves? (Some of it.) Do you know a guy from Pine Ridge named Verdell? He used to work with my dad. (Maybe) His last name was something Horse. Running Horse? (No) Fielding these questions was exhausting and added another layer of weariness and alienation to his college experience. He found himself having to answer such inquiries from his roommate, classmates, professors, his R.A…Sometimes they were cloaked in well-meaning concern (I bet you get tired of all these questions, huh?) but they were always there. Most evenings, Trevor would retreat to his room and call his mom. His roommate, Skyler, a cross-country runner who was handsome in an unspectacular way and who monitored his water intake religiously, was hardly ever around. He seemed to have no trouble making friends in college and reveled in the social opportunities around him. In his phone calls back home, Trevor found himself experiencing a homesickness that inhabited the pit of his stomach like a hunger pang. He had never been gone from home for that long. Really, his only trip away had been the summer before his senior year, to a weeklong STEM camp for Native kids that one of the state colleges had put on. But that had been with a half dozen other students from his high school. Here he was alone. The subjects of their conversations would leave Trevor feeling a gravitational pull toward home: Trenton got into a fight at school and got suspended. Travis is drinking again. We had sweat for your auntie because they have to amputate her leg after all. Those dogs were back again. Everett hit $200 at the casino on Tuesday night but of course he put it all back in. They’re having a basketball tournament for that boy who got paralyzed in that wreck. Our hot water heater went out but uncle came and fixed it. They still haven’t found that Two Arrows girl that went missing. Travis wants to go up on the hill this spring – maybe that will get him to quit drinking. Good news, bad news, mundane news…The latter tugged at him the most. Like many who grew up on Pine Ridge, he had a love-hate relationship with the reservation. It was the home of his people after all, and could be so beautiful (“God’s country,” as it was called by even those who had no time for the white man’s God). But the hardships, the tragedies, the death…it all wore away at your spirit, hardened you. Still, the news of day-to-day life going on in his absence; a school powwow, a bingo tournament, tribal council drama, rumors of a Dairy Queen opening. It made him miss home in an ineffable way. The last vestige of his indecision evaporated after a particular conversation in the lounge of his dorm. He had been sitting on a beanbag chair, discussing random topics with two friends (at least, he considered them friends, in some ill-defined adolescent way). They had all left a dull party that hadn’t livened up even after a couple of drinks, but still felt heady and obligated to prolong the night a little longer. So, they were shooting the shit, in a garishly-lit common space that smelled of burnt popcorn, and Trevor was feeling rather collegiate. An off-campus party, late-night conversation; weren’t these the trappings of university life that he had seen in teen movies, if a much more prosaic version? Kayleigh, tipsy off Jäger bombs, started the chain of events that would unravel his college experience with a simple, but pointed question: “How Indian are you, anyway?” Colton snorted at this comment. “Kay, you can’t just ask that!” But he was clearly more amused than disapproving. “You mean like my blood quantum or what?” Trevor asked. “Is that what you guys call it?” said Kay, now playing the innocent party. “I just mean, like, you say you’re Indian, I mean like I know you are, like, I know you are on paper…” The alcohol was causing her to trip over her words but she plowed on. “I mean like, okay, if I were to like, run into you on the street…” Kay was now gesturing expansively, as if the meaning of what she was saying wasn’t explicit from words alone. “Like, I wouldn’t be like, ‘Damn, look at that Indian,’ right? I’d just assume you were a white guy. I mean you know what I mean? Ugh, I’m not making sense.” She was making perfect sense. Colton looked embarrassed, and for a second, Trevor thought he might shut Kay down. But instead, his inhibition similarly worn down by a few shots of German 70-proof, he followed suit. “I think what Kay’s drunk ass is trying to say is, like, your ancestors are Indians, right, like in the history books. Like Geronimo or whatever. But do you consider yourself one of them? Or are you, like, their descendant?” Trevor could feel the ball of rage growing within him, a sea urchin radiating spikes in his gut. Stop talking, he thought. Just stop talking. Colton continued, heedlessly. “Okay, so like I’m Irish but I’m not like Irish Irish, like a leprechaun or some shit. Like my ancestors…” Trevor stood up, his fists balled. He was now stone-cold sober but his anger was its own intoxicant. “It’s none of your fucking business. It’s none of your business what the fuck I am!” He was shouting; he couldn’t help it. He picked up a half-empty can of PBR and threw it at the wall, slamming the door to the lounge on his way out. The sudsy contents of the can leaked onto the ugly orange dorm carpet, as Kayleigh and Colton sat in stunned silence. “Jesus,” said Colton finally. “Just trying to ask an honest question.” After that, Trevor had holed up in his room for a few days, skipping classes and avoiding other students. When he told his mom he was dropping out, she hardly sounded surprised. He knew she would be glad to have him back home; the prodigal son returning. Trevor, the one who had his shit together, who had gone to a STEM camp and was almost salutatorian. He knew she thought that once he got back, he could do what she couldn’t; get Travis on a better path, bring another income to the household, fix what needed to be fixed around the trailer, shoot at the stray dogs when they came around. It would all fall to him. His failure was their blessing; they would lean on him as long as he could stand. So here we fucking go, he now thought, patting his gel-stiffened hair and giving himself one last hazel-eyed glance in the mirror. Gotta get that bread. His brief stint at the tribal building hadn’t panned out. He was a good worker but wet weather made his road too sloppy to get out easily. Too many latenesses had translated into a pink slip. “Shit man we all got bad roads. Gotta leave earlier,” his boss had said. So, lesson learned, he was giving himself extra time getting ready for this interview. Really, the lady had just told him to come by “around mid-morning,” so he’d probably be okay. The job was off-rez, down at the county livestock auction and sale barn in one of the closest border towns, “white towns,” as Ridgers called it. It was mostly going to be paperwork – inventory and itemizing and that kind of shit – but it was decent pay and Trevor hoped that he could transition over to working with the animals before long. On most days, he preferred their company to dumbass people. Grabbing his bag, Trevor stuck the loafers inside with his other miscellany. He would need to wear his cowboy boots across the muddy expanse between the bottom step of the porch and the door to his Blazer so he jammed his feet into them. Outside, he walked gingerly so as not to stain his black slacks with muck. Once in the driver’s seat, he figured he would leave the boots on for the drive, since they were already smearing mud on the floor liner, and in case he got stuck and needed to get out. Trevor knew that the people who worked at the sale barn were as countrified as he was and wouldn’t judge muddy boots under most circumstances, but he also knew that being from Pine Ridge meant he had to put his best foot forward, literally in this case. Trevor fired up the Blazer, put it in four low, and gunned it. His tires found grip and he jerked along, slimy divots of earth spattering his windows and roof like hail. His windshield wipers left a pasty smear that obscured much of his view, but he practically knew the way by feel. As soon as he could, he bumped up onto the grass, gopher holes and clumps of prairie bluestem jolting his ride, testing what was left of his suspension. When he finally hit the pavement, the smoothness was startling as it always was, like a TV being suddenly muted, like silence after a door slamming. He cruised through town, passing the gas station, the other gas station, the commod building, the quonset hut, the old BIA headquarters…and turned south into Nebraska. He tried to ignore the persistent squeal under the hood that had gotten worse lately. The overcast sky reflected the dullness of the land – as below, so above – and Trevor alternated between zoning out and counting hawks on telephone poles. A handful of miles south of the border, the vehicle gave a jolt and Trevor felt a temporary loss of control. He hit the brakes and steered toward the shoulder, but the Blazer was suddenly steering like an army tank. Fuck, he whispered. Once he wrestled Blazer off the road, Trevor got out and popped the hood. He already knew what he would find under the rising steam. “Fucking serpentine belt,” he hissed to the universe. Trevor was good with cars but he didn’t have the tools for this fix. Luckily, he thought, out here in the country, somebody who did would be by soon. Lots of Natives on this road, maybe even a cousin would happen by who could at least give him a ride to town. Trevor thought of calling his dad’s brother Everett on his cell, but figured he’d give it a bit. He hated the thought of owing Uncle Ev anything. Sure enough, in a few minutes, a gunmetal gray truck passed by slowly, hit a u-turn, and pulled up behind him. Trevor felt a twinge of envy over this late-model Dodge Ram MegaCab with duallies. It had county plates on it, so the cowboy-hatted driver was a local guy, and as he got out, his Carhartt overalls and mud-caked boots identified him as a rancher. “Trouble?” MegaCab asked, giving Trevor an easy smile. “Serpentine belt busted,” said Trevor, unconsciously smoothing out his rez accent in favor of a more neutral affectation. Code-switching – another term he had learned at college (by the professor who asked him if he prefers “Native American”). “No shit, huh?” MegaCab considered this information. “I got nothing for that but I could give you a ride somewhere. You call anyone? Someone coming after you?” “No,” said Trevor. “I’m trying to get down to the sale barn for a job interview.” MegaCab looked at Trevor as if for the first time. “Oh ok so that’s why you’re all fancied up. Well, hop in if you don’t mind leaving it here.” Trevor considered this. He was off the rez so there was less of a chance that the Blazer would end up with busted windows or slashed tires. And he was eager to get his interview over and done with. Before he could answer, MegaCab added “I have to stop in Whiteclay first but then I’ll take you down.” This was only a few miles out of the way so Trevor assented and climbed into the rancher’s idling behemoth. It still retained some new-truck smell, mixed with a tinge of manure and rich earth. Really, it was almost luxurious. MegaCab flipped a u-ey again and headed back north toward Whiteclay. Formerly notorious for copious alcohol sales to people from the dry reservation whose border it sat on, Whiteclay’s package stores had been shuttered after the state had revoked their liquor licenses following years of protests over their depredatory business model. Now, it was just a town of a couple small stores and fewer than a dozen permanent residents, its streets empty of vagrants, its ghosts banished. “So, you from Hot Springs?” Trevor momentarily wondered where this question had come from, and then remembered that he had 27-plates on the Blazer – Fall River County, a relic of when he bought the car from a white lady over there. He had kept the off-county registration because the plates were far less likely to get you pulled over off-rez than the infamous 65s of Oglala Lakota County. MegaCab continued without waiting for an answer. “I used to go up to Hot Springs a lot when my dad was in the V.A. hospital up there. Nice town.” “Yup, it’s pretty nice,” said Trevor, wondering if he would have to sustain this small talk the whole way. Luckily, MegaCab took it from there, reminiscing about his high school football team dealing Hot Springs a particularly lopsided loss, and then they were at Whiteclay. Trevor played around on his phone while his driver of the moment went into the little grocery store. He looked up his old roommate Skyler on Facebook (why, he didn’t know; certainly not to friend him) and then Googled “Pine Ridge South Dakota Dairy Queen” just to see if there was any truth to that rumor. MegaCab returned with some mail – Trevor had forgotten that there was a little post office in there – and they turned south toward Rushville. Two miles and five hawks-on-telephone-poles into their trip, MegaCab got chatty again: “I still can’t believe that the state revoked the liquor licenses. They had no legal right to do that of course, but just like everyone else these days, they bowed to the pressure from liberal special interest groups. Those store owners – my brother was one of them – followed the damn law to a T but still got their rights taken away. They’re the real victims in all of this.” Trevor, whose father was found dead in Whiteclay when Trevor was ten years old, didn’t answer. “You know it’s just going to push the problem down the road. These Indians are gonna get their liquor one way or another. You guys must see that all the time up in Hot Springs.” These Indians. You guys. Trevor suddenly recognized MegaCab’s presumption, and wondered when if he should correct it. “If they wanted to buy millions of cans of beer in Whiteclay every year and drink themselves to death, shit, I say let ‘em. It’s a free country, right? Those AIM types are always going on about Native rights and shit, y’know? Well shit, you have the right to drink and die if you want. Not saying that I want that for those people or anything, but the nanny state can’t be protecting everyone from problems of their own making.” Trevor, whose brother had first gotten jailed for drunk and disorderly at age 14, two years after their father died, said nothing. MegaCab continued to rhapsodize about “the Indians” and their problems, adopting the tone of an expert, one who knew all about them. Trevor felt the blood rise to his face. Some coloration at least, he thought darkly. In the pit of his stomach, the sea urchin had returned to stab at his insides. What must it be like, he wondered, to live a life in which people aren’t constantly telling you who you are, naming your characteristics like symptoms, trying to trap you like a spirit in a photograph? The Blazer came in sight on the shoulder ahead. “Can you let me out at my ride?” Trevor asked, his voice hardly recognizable to his own ear, like hearing himself talk underwater. “Sure, you need to grab something out of it?” said MegaCab, reluctantly pausing his diatribe. “No it’s okay,” replied Trevor, “I’m gonna call someone to come help me fix this after all.” He fiddled with his phone as if to underscore this intention. “Well, if you’re sure,” said MegaCab. “And hey,” he added as Trevor stepped down onto the running board. “You be careful around here. One of these rezzers might see you here all by yourself and try to mess you or your car up. And watch out for drunk drivers. You just never know with these Indians.” MegaCab gave a serious nod to accentuate this show of concern. Then he wished Trevor luck and drove off. Trevor watched the truck recede into the distance until it was merely a gray speck between the monochrome earth and the steely sky. He sat down in the cold front seat of the Blazer and looked into the rearview mirror. Hazel eyes stared back at him under a pale forehead. Fuck it, he thought; people are dumbasses. Let ‘em believe what they want; that he was from Hot Springs, that could be was related to that Apache, Geronimo, that he was only Indian on paper. Trevor saw what they didn’t; the hidden depths beneath the surface, and in their faces, in the spaces between their words, their ignorance displayed like a tattoo. In another minute or two, he would call Uncle Ev for a ride. In another hour or two, he would be offered a job at the sale barn that would bring another income into his household (and buy him a new serpentine belt). In another day or two, he would finally finish the tobacco ties for ceremony, at which he would pray for Travis’ sobriety and his auntie’s diabetes. In another month or two, the lengthening of the days would be unmistakable. Spring would come as it always had, first heralded by a single meadowlark piercing the predawn silence with his song. This would be followed by a green sprig on the prairie, pushing up, perhaps, through snow. Then a cluster of pasqueflowers appearing suddenly on a hillside, a skein of geese overhead, sheet lightning on the horizon. Small miracles, one after another. Finally, color would surge back into the world like paint scintillating on a canvas, causing goldfinches to glow like stars and evening thunderheads to stand like towering fires. The brilliant Dakota sunlight would stoke the melanin in Trevor’s skin, and nobody would mistake who he was. He would go up on the hill for two days and nights with Travis that spring, and Trenton would keep fire for them. He would pray for the coming year, for the survival of his people, for enough blessings to outweigh the hardships. And there, among a sea of undulating green, facing the crimson blaze of sunrise, he would again know himself and find the strength to carry on, in the face of all the peculiar indignities of this world.
[Can] [H] ps1/ps2 video game collection i ship! [W] $$
Hey everyone im jason selling off my ps1/ps2 collection i do ship to canada/USA i have a lot of video games for sale ive recently acquired i put all my prices lower than online i have much more for sale message me for more my price's are in canadian dollars (still cheaper after the conversion) Playstation 2: 007 Night fire CIB 5 1 1998 collectors CD VOL 1 Disc only 10 2 1998 collectors CD VOL 2 Disc only 10 2 Action replay 2 CIB 50 1 Action Replay AR MAX Upgrade CIB 115 1 Baraka Mortal kombat controller BRAND NEW 35 Blitz the lague CIB 4 1 Butt-ugly Martians Zoom or Doom! 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Pool CIB 4 2 Red Faction CIB 7 2 Resident evil code veronica X anniversary edtion CIB 15 4 Resident evil code veronica X anniversary edtion CIB Missing bonus 10 4 Rez CIB 32 1 Rogue Ops CIB 5 1 RPG Maker 2 CIB 10 1 Samuari Western CB 100 1 Samurai warriors CIB 8 2 Savage skies BRAND NEW 13 1 Sengoku Basara X Cross BRAND NEW Japan import 50 1 Shadow of destiny CB 15 1 Shadow of rome CB 19 1 Shadow of the colossus CB 10 1 Shaman king power of spirit BRAND NEW 25 1 shin meagmi tensei digital devil saga Deluxe box missing DVD CIB 45 1 Shin Megami tensei Digital devil saga 2 alt cover CB 20 1 Shin Megami tensei Digital devil saga 2 alt cover CIB 30 1 Silent scope 2 dark silhouette CB 5 1 Silpheed the lost planet CIB 20 1 Singstar rocks CIB 3 1 SNK arcade classics vol 1 CIB 19 1 Soccermania BRAND NEW 27 1 Spongebob squarepants lights camera pants BRAND NEW 22 1 Stretch Panic BRAND NEW 45 1 the document of metal gear solid 2 CIB 40 4 The nightmare of druaga BRAND NEW 28 1 The Plan BRAND NEW 5 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Burnout 2 CIB 15 1 Spyro enter the dragonfly GH CIB 13 1 Capcom classics collection CIB 12 1 sly 3 honor among thieves CIB 10 1 sly cooper 1 CIB GH 13 1 NHL 2003 CIB 3 1 socom us navy seals CIB 5 1 Zapper CIB 10 1 Espn international track & field CIB 5 1 vampire night CIB 40 1 Devil may cry 2 CIB 8 1 Devil may cry CIB 8 1 world series of poker CIB 4 1 seek and destroy CB 5 1 Network adapter start up disc brand new sealed 10 1 legacy of kain defiance CIB ( missing back cover) 22 1 onimusha dawn of dreams CIB 40 1 Fifa 08 soccer CIB 5 1 fifa soccer 2004 CIB 4 1 Dead to rights CIB 9 1 god of war GH CIB 10 1 Gretzky NHL 2005 CIB 3 1 NHL 2005 CIB 4 1 NHL 2004 CIB 4 1 Gran turismo 3 A-spec GH CIB 7 1 Jampack summer 2003 CIB 5 1 Prince of persia warrior within GH CIB 4 1 Driver 3 CIB 10 1 Devil May cry 5th anniversary collection 35 1 True Crime new york city CIB 20 1 Genji dawn of the samurai CIB 11 1 madden 2005 CIB 3 1 GUN CIB 11 1 Showdown legends of wrestling CIB 20 1 Fight night round 3 GH CIB 8 1 Hitman trilogy Missing hitman 3 18 1 madden 06 CIB 3 1 delta force black hawk down CB 6 1 Onimusha essentials (onimusha 2 BRAND NEW sealed) 80 1 Playstation 1: 007 racing disc only 5 3 007 The world is not enough BRAND NEW 28 2 007 the world is not enough disc only 5 1 007 tomorrow never dies Disc only 5 2 101 Dalmatians 2 BRAND NEW 25 16 A bugs life CIB 6 1 Action Bass BRAND NEW 4 1 activision classic games BRAND NEW 7 2 Air Hockey disc only 4 1 Alien resurrection disc only 15 1 Alone in the dark BRAND NEW 55 2 Alone in the dark the new nightmare both disc 18 2 arc the lad collection Arc arena monster tournament disc only 15 1 arc the lad collection arc the lad 2 disc only 30 1 Arcades greatest hits BRAND NEW 32 1 Armored core master of arena disc 1 11 1 Army Men Green Rogue Disc only 4 1 Army men sarge's heroes disc only 6 1 Atari anniversary edition 3 1 ATV mania disc only 3 1 Backstreet billiards disc only 8 1 Baldies BRAND NEW 12 1 Bass Landing CIB 12 1 battle arena toshinden 2 disc only 12 1 Bear in the big blue house BRAND NEW 8 2 Beyblade BRAND NEW 20 2 Big bass world championship disc only 4 1 Blasto CIB 15 1 blood omen legacy of kain disc only ( needs resurface) 20 1 Board Game Top Shop BRAND NEW 40 2 Bob the builder can we fix it BRAND NEW 5 1 broken sword the shadow of the templars disc only 11 1 Bugs bunny and taz time busters disc only 20 1 Bushido Blade 2 Case and manual only 14 1 Bust a Groove 2 BOX AND MANUAL 30 1 caesars palace 2000 disc only 3 1 cardinal syn disc only 6 1 Castlevania Chronicles CASE AND MANUAL 50 1 Championship Bass BRAND NEW 12 chrono cross disc 1 10 2 colin mcrae rally disc only 8 1 Colony Wars 3 Red sun CIB 8 1 Colony Wars CIB Japan import 10 1 colony wars disc 1 7 2 command and conquer both disc 11 1 command and conquer red alert disc 2 12 1 command and conquer red alert retaliation disc 2 12 5 contender 2 disc only 3 1 contender disc only 3 1 Contra legacy of war CB 15 1 Convert ops nuclear dawn both disc 10 1 convert ops nuclear dawn disc 1 5 3 Cool boarders 2001 Disc only 2 1 Cool Boarders 3 CB 4 1 Cool Boarders 4 CB 4 1 coolboarders 2 disc only 3 1 Coolboarders 2 killing sessions CIB J 5 1 Coolboarders 2001 / boarding pass DVD? coolboarders 2001 disc only 3 1 coolboarders 3 disc only 3 1 coolboarders 4 disc only 3 2 covert ops nuclear dawn disc 2 only 6 1 Crash 2 CB GH 10 1 crash bandicoot 2 cortex strikes back disc only 10 2 Crash bandicoot warped collectors edition disc only 10 1 crash bandicoot warped disc only 10 1 Crash bash + manual disc only 13 2 Crash Bash CIB 15 1 Crash team racing CTR disc only 14 2 Cubix Robots for everyone BRAND NEW 14 11 D Long Box Disc 1 only CB 30 1 Dance dance revolution konamix BRAND NEW 10 Dark light conflict CB 5 1 Dave Mirra BMX CIB 6 1 Dave Mirra BMX Maximum Remix CIB 10 3 Dave mirra freestyle BMX disc only 5 1 David Beckham Soccer CIB 4 1 Dead Ball Zone CIB 10 1 Dead in the water 12 1 dead or alive disc only 12 1 deathtrap dungeon disc only 6 2 deception 3 dark delusion disc only 35 1 defcon 5 disc only 5 1 Demolition Racer CIB 10 1 demolition racer disc only 5 1 descent disc only 6 1 Descent Maximum CIB 10 1 Destrega Disc Only 11 3 Destruction derby 2 CB 5 2 Destruction Derby 2 CIB GH 10 3 destruction derby 2 disc only 6 5 Destruction derby disc only 5 4 Destruction Derby RAW CIB 14 1 Detective barbe mystery cruise CB 4 1 Devil Dice CIB 14 1 Dexter laboratory mandarks lab BRAND NEW 15 1 dexter's labratory mandark's lab disc only 5 1 die hard trilogy 2 disc only 7 1 die hard trilogy disc only GH 7 11 digimon rumble arena disc only 11 1 digimon world 1 disc only 29 2 Digimon World 3 Disc Only 20 1 digimon world 3 disc only 22 1 dino crisis 1 disc only 16 3 dino crisis 2 disc only 34 2 Dino crisis demo disk disc only 12 1 dinosaur disc only 3 4 dire hard trilogy disc only 6 1 Dirt jockey disc only 4 1 discworld 2 cib 55 2 Discworld disc only 34 1 disruptor disc only 18 2 Dora the Explorer CIB 2 1 dracula the last sanctuary disc 1 10 2 dracula the resurrection disc 1 10 1 Dragon 13 3 Dragon ball z Ultimate battle 22 Dis Only 4 2 Dragon Seeds CB 40 1 Dragon tales dragon seek BRAND NEW 8 1 Dragon tales dragon seek CIB 4 1 Dragon warrior 7 disc 1 16 1 dragonball GT final bout disc only 13 1 Dragonball Z ultimate Battle 22 BRAND NEW J 25 1 driver 2 both discs 7 1 driver 2 disc 2 3 3 Driver 2 GH CIB 8 1 Driver CB 5 3 Driver CIB 7 2 Driver GH CIB 7 2 Driver you are the wheelman disc only 7 3 Dukes of Hazard 2 Daily Dukes It Out CB 5 2 Dukes of Hazard 2 Daily Dukes It Out CIB 7 2 Dukes of Hazard Greatest Hits CIB 7 1 Dukes of Hazard Racing for Home Disc Only CIB 7 3 dynasty warriors CIB disc needs resurface 18 1 easter bunny's big day disc only 10 1 ECW Hardcore Revolution CIB 6 1 eggs of steel disc only 20 1 Epidec CIB 13 2 Equestrian showcase BRAND NEW 16 1 Evil Zone CIB 20 1 evilzone disc only 11 1 Excalibur 2555 A.D CIB 7 4 Excalibur 2555 A.D Dis Only 4 1 Expendable CIB 14 3 expendable disc only 7 2 F1 2000 CIB 6 1 F1 grand prix BRAND NEW 45 1 f1 World Grand Prix 1999 CIB 9 1 f1 world grand prix disc only 4 1 Fade to Black CB 7 1 Fade to Black CIB 9 5 Fade to Black Disc Only 5 1 Family Feud CIB 4 2 Family Game Pack CIB 4 1 Fatal Fury Wild ambition CIB 27 1 fear effect all discs and manual 23 1 fear effect disc 1 8 4 fear effect disc 2 8 2 fear effect disc 4 8 2 fear effect disc3 8 1 Felony 1179 CB 9 1 Felony 1179 CIB 14 1 Feonly 1179 disc oly 5 1 fifa 2000 disc only 2 1 Fifa 2001 CIB 5 1 Fifa 2002 CB 6 1 Fifa 99 CB 5 1 Fifa 99 CIB 6 2 Fifa 99 Disc only 2 1 Fifa soccer 2004 CIB 5 1 Fifa soccer 97 9 1 Fighting Force 2 CIB 10 1 fighting force 2 disc only 6 2 Fighting Force CIB 13 4 Final fantasy 7 CB 45 4 Final fantasy 7 CB GH 40 2 Final fantasy 7 disc 1 13 1 Final fantasy 7 disc 1 GH 10 1 Final fantasy 7 disc 2 13 1 Final fantasy 8 all discs GH 15 1 Final fantasy 8 CB 20 3 Final fantasy 8 CB GH 18 1 Final fantasy 8 CIB 30 2 Final fantasy 8 CIB japan import 10 0 final fantasy 8 disc 1 8 2 Final fantasy 8 disc 2 GH 6 1 final fantasy 8 disc 3 8 3 final fantasy 8 disc 3 GH 6 2 final fantasy 8 disc 4 8 3 Final fantasy 8 disc 4 GH 6 1 final fantasy 8 GH disc 1 8 4 Final fantasy 8 GH disc 3 10 3 final fantasy 8 GH disc 4 8 1 final fantasy 9 all discs 20 2 Final fantasy 9 all discs GH 15 1 Final fantasy 9 CB 20 1 Final fantasy 9 CB GH 17 1 final fantasy 9 disc 1 6 1 final fantasy 9 disc 2 6 4 final fantasy 9 disc 2 GH 6 2 final fantasy 9 disc 4 6 1 Final fantasy anthology FFV disc 8 1 final fantasy chronicles both discs 23 2 Final fantasy chronicles CIB 35 1 Final fantasy chronicles CIB GH 18 5 Final fantasy chronicles ff4 12 1 Final fantasy GH disc 2 10 4 FInal fantasy origins BRAND NEW GH 16 3 Final fantasy origins CIB 17 5 Final fantasy origins CIB GH 13 3 Fishermans bait CB 3 2 Fishermans bait CIB 5 4 Floating runner CB 25 1 ford racing CIB 3 6 Ford racing Disc only 2 1 Ford truck mania CIB 3 1 Formula 1 98 CIB 4 2 formula 1 CB 3 3 Formula 1 championship edition CB 3 3 Formula 1 championship edition CIB 5 4 formula 1 CIB 5 2 Formula 99 BRAND NEW 10 3 formula one 2000 CIB 5 3 Formula one 99 CIB 8 4 Forsaken CIB 5 1 Fox kids micro machines racing CIB 9 4 Fox sports soccer 99 CIB 5 3 Freestyle motocross mcgrath vs pastrana CIB 4 3 Frogger 2 BRAND NEW 22 1 Frogger 2 CB 5 1 Frogger 2 CIB 8 3 Frogger 2 disc only 3 1 frogger CB 6 2 Frogger GH CIB 8 5 G-Police BRAND NEW 30 2 Galerians Discs 1 2 3 30 1 Gallop Racer CB 11 2 Gallop Racer CIB 13 2 Gauntlet legends disc only 10 1 Gekido CB 24 1 Gekido disc only 14 2 Gekioh Shooting King CIB 50 3 Geom Cube CIB 8 1 Gex 3 BRAND NEW 65 1 Gex 3 CIB 13 3 Gex Disc only 8 4 Gex enter the gecko DIsc only 10 1 Glover DIsc only 8 1 Goal storm 97 disc only 15 1 Gold and glory the road to eldorado CIB 9 1 Golden nugget disc 2 3 1 GP Police CB 8 1 GP Police CIB 9 1 Gran turismo 1 disc only 6 1 Gran turismo 2 CB GH 8 3 Gran turismo 2 disc only 5 10 gran turismo CB 10 1 Gran turismo J CIB 10 1 Grand theft auto Disc only 5 10 Grand theft auto Mission pack #1 london 1969 CIB 10 1 grand theft auto the directors cut CB 14 1 Grid runner CIB 8 1 Grind session CIB 8 3 Grudge Warriors BRAND NEW 13 1 Grudge warriors CIB 6 4 grudge warriors DIsc only 4 6 GTA london 1969 disc only 8 1 Guardians crusade disc only 15 1 Gubble CIB 5 1 Gundam Battle Assault 2 CIB 23 2 Gundam Battle Assault 2 Disc only 10 3 Gundam Battle Assault CIB 17 3 Gundam Battle Assault DIsc only 10 1 Gunfighter CB 5 1 Gunship CIB 8 1 hardcore ecw revolutuon disc only 5 2 HBO boxing disc only 4 1 high heat baseball 2000 disc only 5 2 hot shots golf 2 disc only 7 1 hot shots golf disc only 6 1 hot wheels extreme racing disc only 7 3 hot wheels turbo racing disc only 9 1 Hydro thunder BRAND NEW 45 1 in cold blood disc 2 18 1 Incredible Crisis CIB 35 1 jeremy mcgrath supercross 98 disc only 3 1 jetmoto 2 disc only 4 2 jetmoto 3 disc only 7 1 jetmoto disc only 4 2 Jimmy white cueball BRAND NEW 5 1 johnny bazookatone long box disc only 20 1 Juggernaut CB 48 1 Juggernaut Discs only 24 1 K-1 the arena fighters disc only 5 1 K1 Revenge BRAND NEW 13 1 kingsfield disc only 25 1 kiss pinball disc only 4 1 Koudelka disc 2 25 1 krazy ivan disc only 10 2 Kyuin Ps1 CIB Japan Import 500 1 Largo winch BRAND NEW 6 3 Legend of dragoon disc 1 15 1 legend of dragoon disc 2 15 1 legend of dragoon disc 2 GH 13 1 legend of dragoon disc 4 GH 13 2 legend of dragoon disc 4 GH 15 1 lhra drag racing BRAND NEW 5 1 looney tunes racing disc only 11 2 Lunar 2 eternal blue disc 3 35 1 Lunar Silver Star story CB 58 1 Machine Head BRAND NEW 15 1 Machine hunter disc only 5 1 Martian gothic BRAND NEW 30 18 Martian gothic CIB 14 3 martian gothic disc only 7 1 medievil 2 disc only 35 1 megaman x4 disc only 10 1 megaman x5 disc only 10 1 Men in black series crash down BRAND NEW 10 1 metal gear solid both discs 19 1 metal gear solid both discs GH 17 1 metal gear solid disc 1 10 1 metal gear solid GH disc 1 8 1 metal gear solid VR missions disc only 9 1 Miracle space race BRAND NEW 7 1 MLB 2003 BRAND NEW 10 1 MLS Gamenight CIB 27 1 Mobile light force BRAND NEW 30 1 Monster rancher Battle Card episode 2 BRAND NEW 45 7 Mortal kombat 3 disc only 21 1 mortal kombat trilogy disc only GH 18 2 moto racer 2 disc only 3 1 motocross mania disc only 3 1 motor toon grand prix disc only 10 1 Ms.Pacman maze madness BRAND NEW 50 1 Namco Museum Volume 1 BRAND NEW 12 1 namco museum volume 3disc only 3 2 namco museum volume 5 disc only 23 1 Namco Museum volume BRAND NEW 15 1 nascar rumble disc only 7 1 NBA jam Tournament edition disc only 29 1 NBA show time NBA on nbc disc only 6 1 NFL full contact disc only 4 1 NFL gameday 2005 BRAND NEW 5 1 Ninja shadow of darkness disc only 11 1 oddworld abe's exodus both discs 14 1 off-world interceptor extreme disc only 7 1 pac-man world disc only 10 1 Pacman World BRAND NEW 50 1 Parasite eve 1 disc 1 1 parasite eve 1 disc 1 disc only 15 1 Parasite eve 2 disc 2 disc only 15 1 pluck'ys big adventure disc only 4 1 Plucky Big adventure BRAND NEW 10 2 power move pro wrestling disc only 5 1 Power play sports trivia BRAND NEW 4 1 powerslave disc only 40 1 Putter Golf BRAND NEW 5 2 Pyjama Sam BRAND NEW 15 1 Qix Neo CIB 13 1 Racing BRAND NEW 6 1 Ray tracers BRAND NEW 50 2 Razor racing BRAND NEW 5 1 RC de go BRAND NEW 25 1 RC helicopter BRAND NEW 10 1 Re-loaded BRAND NEW 33 1 Red Asphalt BRAND NEW 15 1 Resident evil 2 disc 1 15 1 Resident evil 2 disc 2 15 2 Resident evil 3 disc only 40 2 resident evil 3 disc only with manual 50 1 Ridge racer BRAND NEW 25 1 rival schools disc 2 25 1 riven the sequel to myst all discs 13 1 riven the sequel to myst disc 3 4 1 riven the sequel to myst disc 5 4 3 riven the sequel to ryft disc 4 4 1 road and track: the need for speed disc only 6 1 Robo-pit 2 BRAND NEW 15 1 Saltwater sports fishing BRAND NEW 10 0 Samurai Spirits III: Zankuro Musouken (PSOne Books) PS1 JAPAN NEW 40 1 Sesame Street Elmo's number journey CIB 4 1 Sesame Street sports CIB 13 1 shadow madness both discs 12 1 shadow madness disc 1 6 1 Shadow man BRAND NEW 30 1 shockwave assault disc 1 7 1 Shooter space shot BRAND NEW 15 1 Silent Hill CIB J 20 1 sim city 2000 disc only 6 1 Skydiving extreme BRAND NEW 5 2 smackdown! 2 know your role disc only 8 2 soulblade disc only GH 8 1 space invaders disc only 7 1 space jam disc only 8 1 spawn the eternal disc only 13 1 Spec ops Airborne commando BRAND NEW 7 1 Spec ops cover assault BRAND NEW 5 1 Spec ops ranger elite BRAND NEW 5 1 spec ops ranger elite disc only 3 1 Specs ops stealth and patrol BRAND NEW 5 3 Speed Racer BRAND NEW 55 1 Speedball 2100 BRAND NEW 5 1 Sports car GT BRAND NEW 20 1 Sports Superbike 2 BRAND NEW 5 1 spyro riptos rage GH disc only 15 2 spyro the dragon disc only 15 1 spyro year of the dragon disc only 15 1 spyro year of the dragon GH disc only 15 3 star ocean the second story disc 2 20 1 Star wars Dark forces BRAND NEW 45 1 star wars masters of teras kasi disc only 8 1 star wars rebel assault 2 both discs 9 1 star wars rebel assault 2 disc 1 5 1 Sterling Gun Aerux new in box light gun 30 1 Street fighter 2 collection disc only 30 1 street fighter alpha 3 disc only 16 1 street fighter ex plus a disc only 20 1 Street Racquetball BRAND NEW 5 1 Super bubble pop BRAND NEW 5 5 syphon filter 2 disc 2 5 1 Syphon filter BRAND NEW 22 1 syphona filter 2 disc 1 5 3 team rocket rescue disco nly 3 1 Tekken 1 longbox Disc only with manual 20 1 tekken 2 disc only GH disc only 5 1 ten pin alley disc only 4 1 the divide enemies within disc only + manual 26 1 the dukes of hazard daisy dukes it out 2 disc only 6 6 the dukes of hazzard racing for home disc only 5 4 The emperors new groove CB 7 1 The emperors new groove CIB 9 2 The final round CIB 5 4 the italian job disc only 5 1 the making of lunar 2 eternal blue complete disc only 18 2 the making of lunar silver star story complete disc only 20 2 Title Price Quantity tomb raider 2 disc only 7 1 tomb raider disc only 6 1 tomb raider the last revelation disc only 7 1 tony hawk pro skater 2 disc only 11 2 tony hawk pro skater disc only 10 4 toukon retsuden CIB japan import 5 1 touring car challenge disc only 5 1 toy story 2 disc only 11 1 toy story racer disc only 12 1 Triple play 2000 BRAND NEW 15 1 Tunnel B1 BRAND NEW 30 6 twisted metal 2 disc only 23 2 twisted metal 2 GH disc only 14 1 twisted metal 3 disc only 10 1 twsited metal 4 disc only 12 1 UFC BRAND NEW 15 2 Ultimate 8 ball CB 3 1 v-rally 2 need for speed disc only 5 1 V.I.P. BRAND NEW 18 2 Vanguard bandits disc only needs resurface 50 1 vanishing point disc only 3 1 vigilante 8 disc only 10 1 Virtual Kasparov BRAND NEW 12 1 VR Golf 97 BRAND NEW 9 1 WCW Backstage Assault BRAND NEW 18 1 wcw nwo thunder disc only 3 1 wcw vs the world disc only 4 1 Weakest Link BRAND NEW 9 1 wheel of fortune 2nd edition disc only 3 1 who wants to be a millionaire 2nd edition disc only 2 1 wild arms 2 both discs 28 1 wild arms 2 disc 2 14 1 Winning eleven 3 CIB japan Import 8 1 World's scariest police chace CB 8 1 wrestlemania the arcade game disc only 10 1 wwf attitude disc only 6 1 wwf warzone disc only 4 1 x-files disc 2 4 1 x-files disc 3 4 1 x-files disc 4 4 1 x-men children of the atom disc only 70 1 x-men vs street fighter disc only 85 1 Xenogears disc 2 20 2 XS junior league dodgeball BRAND NEW 9 1
A Comprehensive List of Changes in Persona 5 Royal (Prologue to 5/2)
I wanted to create a comprehensive list of every last change I could find between the old game and the new game both to help players discover things that they may have missed, and to give people making walkthroughs or optimal daily guides an outline that will save them some time when writing up their own material.
Methodology and notes about this list
This list is intended to document changes on a semi-specific level. I am simply listing things that I notice while playing through the game. I am being pretty meticulous with my documentation, but this list is not designed to document every single minor detail (such as individual stat changes to weapons and items or arcana-type changes to personas, for example). I am noting whatever I can as I go along and looking things up to verify that they have been changed if I can find a video or wiki article on the old game. I also intend for this guide to be as spoiler-free as possible in regards to the story, so even though I am writing down all the new things I notice, I will leave information about cutscenes and story elements as vague as I can so as not to ruin the experience for anyone. To keep things maintainable, I have broken up the list up into logical date spans from the last deadline of the previous palace to the deadline for the next palace; the first list covers the prologue to the deadline for Kamoshida's palace, the second from the day after Kamoshida's deadline to Madarame's deadline, and so on and so forth.
About the author
I played Persona 5 and am currently playing through P5R on a PS4 Pro but have not tried the PS3 version of the game. I completed my first run and New Game+ back-to-back on 11/11/2019 and 1/12/2020 respectively, so the game is still fairly fresh on my mind. I spent ~250 hours on the base game, a good chunk of which was devoted to optimizing a perfect roster of personas for Joker in NG+. I have gotten the Platinum Trophy for Persona 5.
Changes (Prologue to 5/2)
Graphics & Performance
Most if not all of the textures and models in the game appear to have been updated, and look a lot cleaner now that the game is not limited to the PS3's comparatively low texture cache size.
Less aliasing (read: "jagged edges") on in-game models and geometry (not sure if this is due to the PS4 Pro's 4k upscaling or an anti-aliasing post processing effect.)
Far fewer loading screens/reduced loading times.
Saves and PSN
There is an autosave feature to save progress towards Thieves Den rewards; it does not create a new save for you to return to. This progress is retained across playthroughs.
There is no longer a separate blue "network save" slot.
You can now take screenshots and video clips up to late December (I haven't tested this yet myself as I haven't gotten that far), after which they are blocked.
Most (but not all) of the achievements have been updated, and they generally seem to be much less completionistic than the previous game. There are no achievements for ranking up all confidants, getting all vending machine items, clearing all mementos requests, etc. You could probably complete all the achievements in a single playthrough as long as you're paying attention to getting them; I haven't seen any that require a NG+ run.
Sound Effects & Music
There seem to be quite a few more ambient sound effects that weren't in the base game (like clanking chains/cages in Kamoshida's palace), but I'm mostly playing with headphones now, so I could just be noticing them more.
There are 20-30 new songs that have been added to the soundtrack.
Story & Cutscenes
A number of characters that show up later in the game make brief cameos and show up in various places around Tokyo much earlier than they did in the base game.
Kamoshida can now be seen walking around the school after 4/18 and can be talked to for some more verbal abuse.
The prologue also has a new in-engine cutscene that introduces Kasumi Yoshizawa.
On 4/12, there is a new interactive cutscene that introduces the protagonist to Kasumi for the first time during a subway ride to school.
On 4/18, there is another interactive cutscene with Kasumi and Kawakami.
There are quite a few new side conversations with NPC's that hint at the new activities and areas added to Tokyo in P5R.
All of the classroom questions seem to have been changed.
Bad weather will improve the knowledge gained by studying in the library.
The tutorial for studying in the library also mentions that you may overhear students talking about you, which will reduce knowledge gained but increase guts. In P5, the description indicated that studying despite the noise would raise guts, I do not know how this has actually been adjusted, if at all.
"Speed Reader" is a new book available in the library that can reduce the number of times you need to read a book to finish it. It is checked out initially, but will be available on 7/1 near the deadline to Kaneshiro's palace.
Triple Seven (the convenience store) now pays ¥3500+ instead of ¥2800+, making it now pay more than the flower shop (¥3200+) per shift.
Rafflesia (the flower shop) now only offers afternoon shifts. Previously you could work there in the afternoons or evenings.
Working at Triple Seven now also improves your Charm stat.
Triple Seven now offers a rewards point program that gives extra points on any day of the month with a 7 in it. On these days, more customers will come to the shop, allowing you to earn more Charm points and money than usual.
There is a new Sports Store in the underground mall that sells some new consumables, accessories, and (presumably) confidant gifts for Ryuji. This store replaces the record label shop.
A few of the shops in the underground mall now sell male confidant gifts.
The Shibuya Diner on central street has been renamed to "Bikkuri Boy" and is closed until May.
The batting cages now offer different activities based on the time of day. At night, you can swing as much as you want, but there are no prizes. Hitting three home runs at night earns you a coupon for a free daytime session.
Some books now have a prerequisite Knowledge level in order to read them.
Studying at one of the booths in LeBlanc during bad weather will now increase the amount of knowledge points gained.
You can use the cleaning tools in the restroom of LeBlanc to improve your Kindness stat during the evenings, and also gain points towards Sojiro's social link.
You can now sit and reflect on the toilet in LeBlanc, which will give you hints as to how close you are to improving each of your social stats.
Cleaning up the bookshelf in your room on 4/18 or later will reward you with a few new books to read.
Cleaning out the rest of your room on 4/18 or later will also give you a CRT TV, although it does not include a tuner so you cannot receive TV blurbs from your room.
The CRT TV is now replaced with a DVD player at the secondhand shop.
Scarlet (the DVD rental shop) now requires you to pay a ¥4800 annual membership fee that allows you to rent any DVD you want for an unlimited period of time at no cost. You are only able to have one DVD rented out at a time.
I believe this was in the previous game, but there is now a tutorial that points out that you can solve crossword puzzles at the far table (near the restroom) at LeBlanc on certain days without causing time to progress.
You can now explore Yongen-Jaya at night on 4/21 instead of 4/22.
After exploring the Metaverse, you can now perform activities within LeBlanc and your room, even without Kawakami's confidant bonuses.
You will now get text messages from part-time jobs on busy days, where you can potentially earn more social points and money.
On busy days, the convenience store will have a performance challenge much like the Beef Bowl Shop, where you will need to remember barcode locations and then recall them when scanning items.
The prologue sequence at Sae Nijima's casino now has a tutorial sequence that shows the player how to use the grappling hook.
Individual party members will now occasionally have things to say when in a safe room.
Morgana gives you a few starter items and infiltration tools when officially infiltrating Kamoshida's palace for the first time after 4/18.
You can now loot nearby treasure chests and breakable objects while in cover.
Shadows have new lines of dialog that they will occasionally say when wandering around.
Treasure chests now make a glittery sound effect to let you know that one is nearby.
There are new visual and audio effects on safe room doors that make them more obvious.
Many of the puzzles have been modified and some new ones have been added.
The grappling hook will now allow you to access new areas in palaces where hidden pathways or treasure might be found.
Will Seeds are new collectables that can be found in each palace. Finding one will restore a little bit of SP to the party, and finding all three of a palaces Will Seeds will reward the player with a unique accessory.
With the inclusion of the Will Seeds and grappling hook, a number of areas in each palace have been changed or added.
Boss fights have a few new sequences and attack animations, but are fairly similar to their counterparts in Persona 5.
Guns now replenish all ammo after each fight, the rationale (according to Morgana) is that Shadows will be expecting you to come at them fully loaded. The gun tutorial fight in Kamoshida's palace now has a second encounter to show off this new change.
Take Over now plays during ambush attacks instead of Last Surprise. Last Surprise will still play during normal encounters and enemy ambushes.
Baton passes are no longer linked to confidant ranks and can be used as soon as 4/18.
Performing a baton pass four times in a row will now allow the final party member to use a skill without consuming any SP or HP.
Enemies in each encounter seem to be much less homogenous than in the base game, possibly to encourage the player to take advantage of baton passes.
Savage enemies are a new variation of regular enemies that have to be damaged somewhat before the player can perform a Hold Up.
Disaster Shadows are a new type of enemy that will only counterattack if attacked by the player first. They can also occasionally perform follow-up attacks. Upon death, they will drop an item and explode, damaging any other shadows. The amount of collateral damage that they do is based on the amount of "overflow" damage that is done to them by the player when they die. If they die due to reflected damage or Despair, they will not explode or drop any items.
Asking a shadow to join you when you already have one of them in your stock now grants extra experience to the persona in your stock.
Asking a shadow you already have in your stock will usually yeild better rewards. Shadows in your compendium but not in your stock will ask to join you first before giving you money or items.
Items gained through negotiation vary from enemy to enemy; they have fixed common and rare drops (common being something like a Life Stone, while rare might net you a Balm of Life). These can also be stolen using Joker's Pickpocket ability from Magician Rank 5.
Items & Equipment
The stats and prices for most (if not all) equipment has been altered at Untouchable. In general, gun accuracy and damage seems to have gone down while prices have gone up (presumably due to the ammo replenishment change). The accessories that are initially available are completely different than in P5.
Crafting infiltration tools during bad weather will now allow you to make an additional tool.
The "Stealthanol" infiltration tool has been replaced by "Calming Aroma" which seems to have the same effect (lowers security level).
The "Element Set" infiltration tool has been broken down into it's four component items (Moltov Cocktail, Freeze Spray, Stun Gun, and Air Cannon)
Some accessories now have bonus skills attached to them, which can be used by any persona that the player has equipped.
If you find an item in a chest that is stronger than the one currently equipped on Joker or a party member, they will prompt you to let them equip it automatically.
The home shopping channel on Sundays now offers bundles of a variety of items, rather than a single item. You will now have to choose between different options. Keep in mind that you can only purchase one and will miss out on the other, so choose carefully!
All gear that can be washed at the laundromat now is described as "sooty".
There are quite a few new types of gear, and old gear has been rebalanced as well.
Personas & The Velvet Room
There is a unique appearance for the Velvet Room loading screens.
There are quite a few new personas that have been added.
Some personas have had their arcana changed, and there are now a few new arcana as well.
After you have officially infiltrated Kamoshida's palace for the first time, you will be able to access Challenge Battles in the Velvet Room by speaking to Justine.
Challenge battles allow you to earn rewards through battles that focus on specific mechanics like Baton Passes or Technical damage, battles that test your endurance, or battles with persona users from previous games.
Tae Takemi's voice actress has been changed from Kirsten Potter to Abby Trott (who also voices Annette in Fire Emblem: Three Houses, one of my favorite VA's in the game)
Some of the confidant cutscenes have either had new dialog added, or have been overhauled completely.
Most of the confidant cutscenes now give more conversation opportunities to gain points towards the next rank-up.
Some confidant abilities have been altered, replaced, or shuffled around to unlock at different ranks than before.
Tae Takemi's confidant now has a Guts prerequisite after level 1.
Dialog & UI
Party members now cycle through three portrait angles (instead of just one in P5) with 2-3 expressions each. The general pattern is head down (sad, angry) head tilted up and back (surprised, happy) and then all of the normal portraits from P5. There don't seem to be any new portraits for non-party confidants or named characters (like Shiho)
Some of the NPC's are now voiced, like the parcel deliveryman that directs you to Cafe Leblanc when you are attempting to find Sojiro Sakurai's house.
There are a significant amount of localization fixes for both voice and text dialog as well.
The dialog indicators (i.e. "whisper whisper" "chatter" etc.) over NPC's that you can listen to or talk to will be grayed-out after interacting with them to let you know that you've already interacted with them.
Many interactions with confidants that were previously text-only are now voiced.
Phone conversations now show the portrait of the person you're talking to next to the text box.
The chat app on Joker's phone now has an animated background effect. (Falling flower petals right now, not sure if it changes as the seasons/weather changes yet)
Shadows and other entities now have special effects on their dialog boxes when speaking.
Transition animations when moving between areas have changed due to the reduced loading times. Some of them (like the subway animation) will also change depending on the time of day/weather.
The glyphs for the Playstation button controls in the tutorial prompts are now colored and shaped like the actual button used instead of being a more generic red-colored character.
Tutorial pop-ups now allow you to go back-and-forth between sections using the left and right buttons on the d-pad.
There is now a new "Order Obtained" tab under the inventory interface that sorts items from newest to oldest.
There is no longer an "Urgent" category of infiltration tools (as of 4/17). These have been grouped into the "Palace" category of tools.
In addition to sorting by Aracana and Level, you can now sort the Persona Compendium alphabetically.
The Persona compendium now has a mask icon next to any personas that you already have in your stock.
There is now a "I need to speak with Igor" option if you accidentally back out of the persona fusion/itemization menu.
Pressing the touch pad now does more than just showing what other players have done on the same day as you (though that is still an option). It can bring up Assist Commands, which allow you to view recommendations on which confidant you should spend time with, view suggestions for which activities to do, and quickly travel to the hideout with a single button press.
There are now minimap icons for confidants.
Confidant abilities that carry over from the previous game now have more descriptive text. (i.e. Ryuji's "Punk Talk" ability now specifies that it only works on upbeat-type shadows.)
Pressing R2 on a piece of equipment that has a passive ability or modifier will show a more detailed description of said effect.
There is now a new effect that indicates when a party member has been powered-up by a baton pass. It will change color from red->yellow->blue for each successive pass.
During combat, there are new status indicators by a shadow's name that show all of their current buffs and debuffs.
Instead of just auto-healing the group, pressing square while in a palace now gives the player the option to quickly use some common infiltration tools like smokescreens, Goho-M's, and Calming Aromas.
You can now target specific enemies and points of cover by using the d-pad while hiding.
Map scrolling speed has been increased significantly.
Palace maps now have an indicator that keeps track of what Will Seeds you have collected so far.
The battle summary screen animations have been sped up significantly.
The animation that plays when going to the next day will be different when sending a calling card.
Aside from the infamous first walk to school, most interactions that involve going somewhere new or following another character will be more guided, preventing the player from getting lost (like when Ryuji shows you the way to the airsoft shop for the first time)
I have tried to document all of the changes that I have noticed from the base game, but there is a good chance that I have overlooked things and/or have noticed something "new" that was actually in the base game. Feel free to point out any errors in this post or contribute via the Github link, as this is intended to be a living document with frequent updates.
Due to Reddit's character limitations on posts, I am going to break these change lists up into separate posts, with the deadline for each palace being the delimiting factor. This first one covers all changes found between the prologue and 5/2, which is the deadline for the first palace. Thank you so much for reading, and a huge thanks to everyone who has helped out so far!
Episode written by Michael Schur and directed by Tucker Gates.
Tucker Gates directed four total episodes, including "Threat Level Midnight."
Fast Fact: This episode now streams as a supersized episode, meaning it's longer than a usual episode. But when it first aired on NBC, it was the same length as a regular episode. Then NBC released a producers cut and added some of the deleted scenes back in.
Around this time, the cast started making exclusive content for the NBC website. Angela had a segment called "Adventures with Angela."
Fast Fact: On January 9th, 2007, Apple introduced the first iPhone and Steve Jobs did a presentation to unveil it. The cold open of this episode was the first-ever video played on the iPhone during the presentation. When Steve was demonstrating how to play music, he played "Boulevard of Broken Dreams" by Green Day. In the season 6 episode "Secret Santa," Dwight and Andy sing that song.
Fast Fact: Everyone's talking heads are in front of a window when they think they're losing their jobs to imply that their future is outside of the office. When they find out the branch isn't closing, all of the talking heads switch back to having the inside of the office behind them.
Pam's hair is different, and she has pink eye shadow and lip gloss on. The idea in the hair and makeup department was that Pam was experimenting a little bit because she was trying to break out of her routine.
Michael's wind up teeth going off at his desk was not in the script, it happened by accident and Steve Carell and Melora Hardin just went with it.
Phyllis is knitting at her desk in this episode. But in real life Phyllis does not know how to knit at all. There was a basket of knitting stuff next to her desk throughout the show so she could pretend to knit if she was in the background of scenes.
In Dwight's talking head he says "And right now, the title of Michael's book is 'Something Weird is Going On.' Colon; 'What Did Jan Say? The Michael Scott Story. By Michael Scott, with Dwight Schrute.'" The script only had "Something Weird is Going On. Colon What Did Jan Say?" On the day of shooting, Mike Schur added the line "The Michael Scott Story" and Rainn Wilson added the line "By Michael Scott, with Dwight Schrute."
Rainn has a "tell" whenever he improvises a line. The corners of his mouth go up in a smirk as if he's proud of himself for thinking of that on the spot.
At 6:21, the white board behind accounting says "Congratulations to all for our first (of many) Emmys. Steve was robbed!" in the box for Tuesday the 5th. On the top line written under Thursday, it says "In case you haven't noticed, there is a lot of colorful hooey on this board!"
At 8:23, Lori Socks is in the background. Her and her husband Steven were stand-ins. After rehearsing a scene with the cast, stand-ins take their place while the crew sets up the lights and the camera angles. This way the cast can go do things like get their makeup fixed, change their outfit, or go over their lines. Lori would stand-in for all of the women, and Steven would stand-in for all the men. Occasionally they were in background scenes like this one.
Meredith's storyline of trying to figure out who she made a pact to sleep with on the last day of work was cut from NBC's original airing of the episode.
State Farm Real Deal: Angela and Roy have a few flirtatious moments throughout the show. In "The Fire'' when they're playing Who Would You Do, Roy picks Angela. In "The Secret'' when Phyllis asks Angela if she would pick Jim or Roy, Angela picks Roy. In episode five, "Someone in the Warehouse," of the webisode series "The Books Don't Balance," the accountants are wondering if Roy took the missing money, but Angela says he has too much character to do that. Kevin asks Angela if she has a crush on Roy and she gets flustered. In "Casino Night" when Michael addresses the crowd and says "old friends, new lovers," Angela and Roy are sitting next to each other at the bar and exchange a look. In "Branch Closing" when Angela is trying to confront Roy, she tells him he's strong and capable. She also waves to him at the end of the episode. In "Cocktails," Roy asks everyone at the bar if they want a drink and Angela replies "oh, no thank you, Roy." In "The Negotiation," Roy comes in to get his very last paycheck from Angela. Paul Feig said they thought it was funny that Angela liked Roy while everyone else thought of him as a jerk. Greg Daniels said that Roy and Pam were more of a traditional relationship, and Pam needed a more modern and equal relationship. But it made sense that Angela would be attracted to Roy.
When Michael and Dwight are driving to David Wallace's house, the temperature in the car says it's 80° but the episode is supposed to take place in the winter. The episode was shot in August and aired on November, 9th.
David’s house is located on Lomita Drive in Pasadena, CA. It is three houses away from the house used on the TV show Benson.
David's house has a doormat that has the letter H on it instead of a W. The doormat belonged to the real owners of the house, and the crew didn’t realize that doormat was there until they were editing the episode.
Charles Esten auditioned with Rainn Wilson for a TV show called The Expendables years before The Office. They got the parts and filmed a pilot episode, but the show never got picked up. When Charles auditioned for the part of Josh Porter on The Office, Mike Schur asked how he knew Rainn, and Charles said he would bring a DVD of the pilot they shot if he got hired.
When Andy flips, Josh walking in to say goodbye and having Andy immediately calm down was Charles' idea.
When Dwight and Michael are role playing with Dwight as David, the scene was supposed to end where Michael says "Because he'd be intimidated and I, just... let's start again. Just be more scared of me, okay?" The part after that where Michael walks up again and Dwight acts scared was improvised. They had to cut the scene off immediately to keep it in the show because everyone started laughing afterwards.
Dwight going through David's trash was cut from NBC's original airing of the episode.
At 19:00 there's a dog in David's yard. The dog was not the homeowner's dog, the crew hired the dog and its trainer for this scene. They thought there might be more of a feeling of jeopardy involved if there was a guard dog in the yard. But the dog ended up being too friendly to be intimidating.
Angela says she doesn't want to drive all the way to Dunmore to meet everyone for the group lunch. But Dunmore is only 9 minutes away from Scranton.
Kevin suggests they all go to Cooper's. Brian Baumgartner and Angela went to Cooper's when they visited Scranton.
Creed's storyline of selling all of the office equipment was cut from NBC's original airing of the episode.
Kevin and Angela hugging after finding out they weren't losing their jobs was improvised by Brian and Angela.
When Jim and Karen are talking about whether or not she should move to Scranton, there's a sign behind Karen that says "Window of opportunity. An obstacle to one is an opportunity to another."
When Meredith is on the phone with Gary Trundle, the voice of Gary is Kent Zbornak.
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GP HDX $4 Monsters University GP HDX $4 UP GP HDX $4 Inside Out HDX MA With Points $4 GP $3 Black Panther HDX MA $4 GP $3 Fox And The Hound 2 HDX MA $4 GP $3 Sleeping Beauty HDX MA $4 Olaf's Frozen Adventure HDX MA $4 GP $3 Avengers End Game HDX MA with Points $4 GP $3 Big Hero 6 HDX GP $3 Bridge of Spies HDX MA $5 Star Wars Force Awakens HDX MA with points $4 GP no Points $3 POTC Dead men tell no tales HD MA With Points $3 HD GP No Points $2 HD Avengers Infinity War HD MA With Points $4 HD GP $3 Thor Ragnarok HD MA With Points $4 HD GP No Points $3 HD Starwars the Last Jedi HD MA With Points $4 HD GP No Points $3 HD Starwars Rouge One HD MA With Points $4 HD GP No Points $3 HD Doctor Strange HD MA With Points $4 HD GP No Points $3 HD Guardians of the Galaxy vol 2 HD MA With Points $4 HD GP No Points $3 HD Coco HD MA With Points $4 HD GP No Points $3 HD Finding Dory HD MA With Points HD $4 HD Bueaty and the Beast live Action HD MA With Points $3 HD GP No Points $2 HD Cars 3 HD MA With Points $4 HD GP No Points $3 HD Jungle Book Live Action MA With Points $3 HD Moana HD MA With Points $4 HD GP No Points $3 Seasons Ballers S4 Google Play HDX $2 The Deuce HDX iTunes $2 Insecure S1 HDX GP $2 Paterno $2 HDX iTunes Ballers s3 $2 iTunes Divorce s1 itunes HDX $2 The Young Pope s1 HDX $2 iTunes _Disney Points No Movies Just Points 50 Cents Each _ avangers end game dvd 100 points captain marvel dvd 100 points
This is a tough one for me because I’m a huge, lifelong James Bond fan. I’ve seen every movie multiple times, and I own the entire DVD box set. A couple months ago there was a lot of talk about casting Idris Elba as the next James Bond, or casting a female actor as the iconic British spy, and the traditional identity war inevitably broke out on Twitter. MRAs and closet (or not so closet) racists fumed at having their character taken away from them, while woke twitter celebrated this as a victory for diversity. Initially I sided firmly with Woke Twitter: it’s great that the character would appeal to a wider audience outside the cis, straight white dudes like me that make up the majority of the hardcore fan base. But over time I’ve come to realize that the Twitter misogynists and racists are right: James Bond is their character, and he cannot fundamentally be uncoupled from their toxic views on masculinity and race. Therefore it’s time for James Bond to lose his 00 status and go into permanent retirement. James Bond embodies everything that is toxic about white, western male identity. He has no close friends, no trusted confidants (except for the weird surrogate-mother relationship he had with M towards the end of the Craig-Bond series), and no healthy love interests. Instead he drives sweet cars, wears incredibly nice clothes, sports expensive watches, drinks Heineken (???), and solves nearly every problem he has with violence. He’s the quintessential ideal of the traditional western white male, and we love him for it. He is the masculine ideal of every shitty pickup artist and MGTOW that inhabits the manosphere. Bond Babes represent the ideal that women, especially sexy foreign (mostly European) women, are fuckable, but they’re not lovable or respectable. Sure MGM took pains to ensure that he wasn’t as blatantly racist and sexist as he used to be, but they cannot fundamentally eliminate the toxic basis of the character. Even when they try to be “woke” and include strong female characters, it just makes it even more painfully obvious how deeply problematic the character is. I loved how hard Bond fans tried to defend Bond’s love interest in SPECTRE: hey she’s not some dumb blonde who’s only there to look hot, she’s a brilliant doctor with her own opinions and much stronger sexual agency! Which is why she puts none of that characterization to use and spends the whole movie looking hot, banging James Bond, and having the events of the movie happen to her while other characters actually influence and drive the plot. If she actually did something, it would detract down the fact that this is a James Bond movie about super cool James Bond. The series is even worse on race. Again MGM has taken strides to eliminate the more blatantly problematic aspects of the older films, but IMO it’s almost worse that James Bond is fighting other, evil western white guys in most of the movies. At least if he was fighting racial stereotypes of the locales the movies are set in the local people would have some kind of agency and power in the plot: instead they’re relegated to being hot chicks that Bond hooks up with and background characters. Remember all those great, memorable Thai characters in The Man with the Golden Gun? You know, like “Casino Worker 3,” “Bond’s local guide,” and “Angry Floating Market Vendor.” Actual characters with goals, emotions, and opinions? Forget that! Thai people are essentially relegated to being paddy hat wearing set dressing who get their fruit stands exploded while the real (read: white/western) characters duke it out in their country without any involvement or input from the locals. Sure it’s good that we aren’t sexualizing non-white foreign women anymore, a real problem that supports the horrifying and dehumanizing human sex trafficking and sex tourism industries worldwide. But by casting all of James Bond’s love interests as European, you essentially make the locality entirely superfluous. It’s just a nice set where westerners play out their stories. It might as well just take place in themed casinos on the Las Vegas strip. And I don’t even want to get into the imperialist undertones of having Bond work as an MI-6 agent... Casting a person of color or of a different gender only launders this toxic, racist attitude through the most basic veneer of identity. Idris Elba would essentially have the same shitty attitude as any other James Bond lead, and the same goes for casting a “Jane Bond” in the role. If you strip all that toxicity away from the character, if you cast a woman of color from outside of Britain who wears normal clothes, takes public transit, and works to empower local communities, you’ve essentially created a character that bears no resemblance or thematic tie to any other Bond movie. Bond is the brand ambassador to the racist, imperialist, and toxically masculine consumer culture of the largely white, western male identity. He cannot be separated from this attitude, it defines the character. As such we don’t need a black James Bond, or a female James Bond, or a genderqueer James Bond. We don’t need James Bond at all. EDIT: so I want to clarify a few things and add on to this. First and foremost I don’t think that James Bond movies should be banned, I like them a lot and I think they are an interesting cultural relic of a bygone era. They are also, admittedly a fun series of movies. My argument is that James Bond is fundamentally a problematic representation of a man, precisely because he isn’t really a character. How is it possible that he’s been in 24 movies and not really been a character? Try this: describe James Bond to a friend without stating (1) what he looks like, (2) what he wears, or (3) what his job description is. It’s really, really tough to do. I guess he’s... patriotic (but doesn’t really talk about it that much - Bond is not an explicitly political character), he’s a womanizer, he has no qualms about killing people, he’s suave, I guess he kind of cares about his friends in certain movies (Quantum of Solace being the big one, even though it’s kind of glossed over that he essentially sent Rene Mathis to be tortured by MI6... but Rene is kinda over it so I guess things are OK), and that’s kind of it. Compare to say, Jason Bourne. Like Bond, Bourne is also a trained killer who has been built by his government to act as an anonymous assassin (and can also speak multiple languages, which I don’t think Bond ever could). However that’s really only old Jason Bourne, who the movie never really shows in any real detail. With memory loss Bourne you see a man that fundamentally does not want to fill that role anymore, he is a strong person with a moral compass who doesn’t really want to kill people or take part in his governments machinations. By losing his memory he’s been reset to his default, he cares about people, he’s fallen in love, he’s experienced loss, he’s angry about the situation he finds himself in, and he uses the tools he didn’t really have a choice in getting to outsmart forces that are working against him. There’s more depth in 3 Bourne movies than there are in 24 Bond movies. So what does this matter? It matters because Bond is, essentially, a blank character that the (usually male) audience can enter into and picture themselves as. It’s why Bond is uniquely problematic to a male audience: we are expected to live vicariously through James Bond to an extent not shared by other characters. What do we do as James Bond in these films? Womanize, shoot people, kinda mess up foreign countries, and look cool in nice clothes. There are no consequences for any of these actions (the movies practically reset by the beginning of the next one). The Cuban government doesn’t get all angry at Britain when one of their agents blows up a medical facility in the center of Havana, even though he could have killed a ton of people. It’s just sort of given that they don’t care. It’s essentially a rehashing of old British serials from the hight of the British Empire: which I think is a real serious problem. I said before that James Bond isn’t explicitly political, but implicitly he is extremely political: he represents the dominance of the western world and the western social and economic structure over the globe. Bond works for a powerful western country; he is defined by luxury goods that are associated with the west; he goes to foreign countries, but he doesn’t really explore them or interact with them in any way, they’re just visual set dressings that action scenes take place in. You could move Die another Day to practically any other country and the story would largely remain the same. Sure these views aren’t explicitly stated, but the character of Bond cannot exist in a world where this global order isn’t in place. He is the personification of some of the darkest and most toxic views of white, western men.
Going through old issues of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter and posting highlights in my own words. For anyone interested, I highly recommend signing up for the actual site at f4wonline and checking out the full archives. PREVIOUS YEARS ARCHIVE: 1991 • 1992 • 1993 • 1994 • 1995 • 1996 • 1997 • 1998 • 1999
What's up everybody. Hope everyone's doing well. Just a heads up, there will be no Rewind posts for the rest of this week. I won't be around on Wednesday or Friday this week so the next post after today will be next Monday. Hope everybody has a good Thanksgiving. Also, ham is better than turkey and I will die for that belief, fuck you, fight me if you disagree.
The long-rumored split of AJPW has finally come to pass, as company president Mitsuharu Misawa resigned his position on on 5/28. All sides attempted to keep it quiet to ensure a smooth transition but when word leaked to the media a week or so later, an emergency board of directors meeting was called and 5 more members of the board (wrestlers Kenta Kobashi, Akira Taue, Mitsuo Momota, along with front office exec Yoshihiro Momota and AJPW managing director Kenichi Oyagi) all formally resigned as well. It confirmed that virtually the entire company has decided to leave Motoko Baba. It's strongly believed that will Misawa will be starting his own promotion, probably in September (ends up being August actually). Misawa had hoped to avoid a public promotional war with the wife of Giant Baba and had attempted to negotiate with her to use the AJPW name for his promotion to preserve the legacy and history of what Giant Baba built without it turning nasty. But Motoko Baba refused the proposal and refused to give up any financial control of the company (she owns 85% while Nippon TV owns the other 15%). Both Misawa and Motoko Baba are expected to hold separate press conferences this week to detail their future plans. According to sources, every single wrestler in the company with the exception of Toshiaki Kawada and Masa Fuchi have pledged loyalty to Misawa and pretty much the entire front office is going with him as well. Kawada will likely be named the new AJPW president this week. Kawada and Misawa have known each other since high school but haven't ever really fully gotten along, with Kawada feeling like Misawa was holding him down from being the top star in AJPW. With him in charge, it's expected he will become the top star and will attempt to form a working relationship with NJPW while also bringing in indie talent to fill out the now-empty roster to keep the company afloat.
Misawa and Motoko Baba have never gotten along since Misawa took over as company president following Giant Baba's death. A lot of the problems stem from Baba wanting to maintain the status quo in a company that has been floundering, while Misawa wanted to make major changes, push younger wrestlers, and things like that, only to find himself often overruled. Dave notes a specific show last year when Misawa booked Budokan Hall and put Jun Akiyama vs. Takao Omori in the main event, which Baba was adamantly against, feeling a Budokan show shouldn't be headlined by wrestlers who weren't yet established main eventers. Misawa also wanted to modernize the contracts, with wrestlers having medical coverage if they're hurt, full pay while out injured, and things like that. Usually every year at the end of March, the wrestlers get raises but that didn't happen this year and as a result, nobody re-signed, so currently the entire AJPW roster of wrestlers are free-agents right now, which is why they're all able to up and leave with Misawa. As much as everyone loved Giant Baba, his wife has always been notoriously unpopular in Japanese wrestling circles and was nicknamed "Dragon Lady." Shortly after Giant Baba's death, she forced Jumbo Tsuruta out of the company after he had worked there for 27 years.
Needless to say, there's some potential legal hurdles here. It's believed Misawa may have a non-compete clause in his previous contract that hasn't run out yet. There's also the possibility that Baba will file a lawsuit claiming that Misawa had started working to set up his new company while still employed as AJPW president. During the meeting where Misawa resigned, Baba didn't attend, instead sending her lawyer with a note saying that she wasn't going to be there. The key to this whole thing is Nippon TV, which has been broadcasting wrestling weekly since the Rikidozan days. Dave says this whole thing is really similar to the 1972 situation when Giant Baba left the old JWA promotion (Rikidozan's company) and started AJPW, and Nippon TV went with him. 7 months later, JWA was dead. Publicly, Nippon TV isn't saying anything but it's believed that they are likely going to side with Misawa also, so AJPW's days on television may be numbered. If for some reason that doesn't happen, the Fuji Network in Japan is interested, so Misawa's promotion will surely end up on TV one way or another. All in all, this is pretty devastating for AJPW.
The situation with AJPW's foreign wrestlers is uncertain. They all ride on the same bus and were told to clean out all their stuff. They also checked to see if their hotels were booked for the upcoming July tour only to find out they haven't been booked yet (they usually are by now) so the foreign stars are said to be pretty concerned that they suddenly might not have jobs. Many of the foreign wrestlers are closer to Mrs. Baba since, well, she writes the checks and the money's never late. But they've all been told not to worry, although they haven't been given any details of what their futures hold. Steve Williams and Johnny Ace are the closest to her on a personal level. Stan Hansen, the highest paid foreign star in AJPW, is staying out of the situation. He's just about ready to retire anyway and has saved his money well, so he's just chillin' and waiting to see how this whole thing shakes out.
Things are only slightly less chaotic in the United States. The WWF vs. USA Network trial began this week and the futures of both WWF's Raw and ECW as a whole probably depend on what happens. USA Senior VP David Brenner testified during the first 2 days and revealed that USA pays WWF $42,000 per episode for Raw. Last year during negotiations, USA had offered to increase the payment to $80,000 per episode in 2001, $85,000 in 2002 and $90,000 in 2003 as well as offering increases in payments for the other three weekly shows on USA but Vince McMahon turned them down. USA then increased the offer but McMahon again turned it down and began negotiating with Fox.
More talk about the future of WCW also. The SFX talks to purchase WCW have seemingly gone nowhere so far but are still ongoing. Eric Bischoff and Hulk Hogan have been meeting with Fox about a deal. The idea being that Bischoff and Hogan would go to Fox to start a "new promotion," which would then do a big inter-promotional angle against WCW. Meanwhile, WCW is also still reaching out to ECW about possibly working together, but Heyman has once again refused because he wants no part of anything to do with WCW.
Oh yeah, speaking of....ECW is pretty jolly well fucked up right now too. Heyman has also had discussions with Fox but they haven't gone anywhere. Even though WCW is suffering financial losses the likes of which have never been seen before in professional wrestling, ECW is actually the company in the most danger right now. They're in a major financial crunch and wrestlers are weeks behind on getting paid. Several sources are said to be willing to loan ECW money or to buy a stake in the company, including WWF, which has offered several times to bail Heyman out. But the loan would come with certain conditions that Heyman isn't willing to accept because they would basically give WWF too much control over his company. Furthermore, the situation with the WWF/USA lawsuit is precarious because it's entirely possible and likely that TNN will boot ECW off the network if/when they get WWF Raw, which would leave ECW sitting on a mountain of debt without a national TV deal. Heyman is hopeful that they can survive on syndicated TV, just as they did before they had TNN, but things have changed a lot since then. If TNN ends up getting Raw, ECW's best hope is that they will be picked up by USA but that's by no means a guarantee. Given the state of the company, Dave says they're going to need a major network deal and a much larger production budget from that network if they hope to survive or be competitive.
WCW's Great American Bash is in the books and after a heavily-hyped build-up that something game-changing would happen, the big surprise ended up being the heel-turn of Goldberg. Dave says the show was a huge let-down. Endless run-ins, 3 big "stunt" spots which meant none of them stood out, predictable swerves, and the 3rd straight PPV with the same finish. Goldberg's heel turn got a lot of heat but Dave says it's way too soon in Goldberg's career, plus he just came back after being injured for 6 months and the fans have been dying to see him back. But Russo was determined to turn him heel immediately because "omg swerves are awesome!" so....here we are. Needless to say, Dave thinks this is just about the dumbest thing WCW could have done. It also re-solidifies Hogan and Nash as the top 2 babyfaces in the company, because this company just refuses to fucking learn. Coming out of the PPV, it seemed like the obvious direction for the next PPV would be Hogan vs. Jarrett for the title and Goldberg vs. Nash, but in their infinite wisdom, they went ahead and gave away both matches for free on Nitro the very next night, which, to be fair, it's not like anyone buys WCW PPVs anymore anyway so it probably doesn't really matter. To show just how far WCW has alienated its fans, both Ric Flair and Hulk Hogan were in matches on this PPV where their career was at stake if they lost. Two of the biggest names in history in potential retirement matches should be an instant sellout and monster buyrate but needless to say, they only drew 4,600 paid (in Baltimore, a city where both Flair and Hogan have been huge draws during their careers) and the buyrate is expected to be among the lowest ever. Dave says try to imagine a scenario in Mexico with El Santo and Perro Aguayo in retirement matches only selling 4,600 tickets to Arena Mexico, or Inoki and Riki Choshu putting up their careers and drawing 4,600 to the Tokyo Dome. It would be unthinkable, but welcome to WCW in 2000.
Other notes from the show: the opening cruiserweight match ending got screwed up because the guy who plays Rection's dad came out 5 minutes early and since his run-in was part of the finish, they had to rush to it early. How does that even happen? Kanyon turned on DDP, making it 3 PPVs in a row that DDP lost because someone betrayed him. In the words of Raylan Givens, "If you run into an asshole in the morning, you ran into an asshole. If you run into assholes all day, you're the asshole." I'm just saying, maybe we should start asking why all of DDP's friends keep turning on him. Hogan vs. Kidman was about what you expect: Hogan overcoming all the odds and beating Kidman like a jobber. Ric Flair's entire family got involved in his match with David Flair, including his daughter Ashley (Charlotte) attacking Russo. Vampiro beat Sting in an inferno match, with "Sting" (a stunt double) being set on fire and knocked off the top of the video screen and Dave hated this. And of course, finally, the Goldberg heel turn.
WWF is planning to slowly enact a new rule banning all moves in which a wrestler might land on his head (aside from tombstones and DDTs). The details are still scarce but it would essentially ban all forms of piledrivers, brainbusters, and other back and overhead suplexes. It won't be an immediate change, and wrestlers who use those moves will be asked to move away from them and gradually change their moveset. The idea, of course, is to try to lower the injury risk of guys dealing with neck issues who are working 4 shows a week. Dave talks about major injuries that have happened, particularly the Masa Chono and Steve Austin neck injuries which both came from botched piledrivers and nearly ended the careers of both. No word on why exactly this was decided, but Dave talks about a crazy looking DDT from the top rope that Dean Malenko did to Scotty 2 Hotty at Backlash that scared a lot of people backstage. And of course, there's also the issue with Droz being paralyzed (although that was a freak accident) and things like that. Tazz had already been told to limit his suplexes and wasn't allowed to use some of his more dangerous ones. And Perry Saturn was told to change his brainbuster finisher so he's using an elbow from the top now as his finish.
The New Jersey state assembly passed a bill to regulate "extreme wrestling." It's a bill clearly designed to shut down Jersey All Pro Wrestling and Combat Zone Wrestling, while not applying to other promotions that operate in the state, like WWF, WCW, or ECW. The bill still has to pass the state senate and the governor (who has come out in support of it) before it becomes law. There's a lot of direct quotes from the bill in here that tries to distinguish between WWF/WCW/ECW and promotions like JAPW and CZW and it's pretty bullshit. Most of the things that are listed as being banned in CZW and JAPW happen regularly in the main promotions too. Dave talks about Jeff Hardy doing dives off ladders in WWF, or New Jack jumping off balconies in ECW. Those would still be fine on those shows, but Jeff Hardy or New Jack went to an JAPW or CZW show and did the exact same thing, it would be banned. Any "extreme wrestling" promoter or wrestler that allows someone under 18 into a show would be subject to a $5,000 fine. Other wrestling promotions can run shows without a license but "extreme" promotions (only CZW and JAPW) have to not only get a license to operate, must notify the public safety director 20 days beforehand to get permission in writing, and a bunch of other shit. It's also subject to a bunch of taxes that the other companies aren't. And the biggest thing is that "extreme" shows must carry medical insurance on all the wrestlers and have 2 doctors and an ambulance on site at all times. For these small companies that only draw a couple hundred fans, that's an expense they can't afford. In short, the entire purpose of this bill is to run JAPW and CZW out of business, or at least out of the state, and it looks like it's likely going to become law.
A&E aired a Biography special on Hulk Hogan and I can already tell this is going to be good. Dave's itching to point out the lies and inaccuracies. In an interesting note, after the show finished filming, they got a negative response from an early screening because they never acknowledged Hogan's role in the current downfall of WCW. So they tacked on a thing at the end mentioning that WCW had declined in popularity due to promoting wrestlers who were too old. Anyway, the rest of the documentary was basically Hogan and his friends and family telling a wonderful tale of fiction. Some of it is nitpicky stuff but others, like Vince McMahon's role in Hogan's success and the 80s boom of wrestling, was completely downplayed. He told a bunch of lies about his past steroid use, basically just that he dabbled in them when it was legal. Of course, none of that's true and Hogan's own testimony in Vince's 94 steroid trial contradicts it, but whatever. Overall, it doesn't sound too bad compared to the tall tales Hogan usually tells, but Dave always delights in nitpicking Hogan's conveniently selective memory.
This week's ratings fun: on Raw, the Crash Holly vs. Gerald Brisco match did double the rating of Nitro's Nash/Goldberg main event, which was Goldberg's first match since turning heel the night before. As soon as Nitro ended, 40% of fans switched over to Raw, which is much higher than the usual number.
NJPW experimented with selling tickets online for a show this week. It was a 17,000 seat arena but since this was an experiment, they only put 2,000 of the tickets online for sale and they sold out within an hour, so needless to say it was a success and they'll probably start doing that more often. Watching the business slowly begin implementing technology and taking advantage of the internet is one of the more interesting parts of doing these Rewinds to me.
There was a big news story in Japan due to a recent incident where RINGS president and former wrestler Akira Maeda attacked Pancrase president Masami Ozaki at a hotel. Ozaki ended up pressing charges against Maeda for the attack. From reports, apparently Maeda lost his temper for some reason and punched Ozaki and threw him into a table. Around the same time, a newspaper article ran with Maeda talking about having a friend in the Yakuza, which seems like a pretty thinly-veiled threat.
A newspaper in Sydney Australia reported that promoter Andrew McManus would be running some shows, including a major show headlined by Dennis Rodman vs. Brutus Beefcake at a 19,000 seat arena. The largest crowd for wrestling in Australian history is around 12,000 for an Andre the Giant match several years back. Word is Rodman will work several shows and will be making 7-figures. Dave is skeptical of this to say the least (turns out it was sort of true. Rodman did end up wrestling one show, headlining against Curt Hennig but I'm sure we'll hear more about it when the time comes).
The FX Network is airing a toughman contest featuring wrestlers against football players. Most of the wrestlers are no named indie guys. The biggest names are XPW's Damien Steele and Mustafa from the Gangstas. The Fox Family channel is currently casting roles for a show called Los Luchadores about a group of Mexican wrestlers (this was a kid's show, only lasted 1 season).
Memphis Championship Wrestling has been taping shows at the nearby Sam's Town casino but because no kids are allowed in the casino, the shows have been basically empty so they're moving them back to an all-ages venue in Memphis. Several of Shawn Michaels' students are expected to start working there soon.
Sable is on the cover of the new Muscle & Fitness. In the article, it described her as "the most popular female athlete in wrestling history" and Dave supposes you could make a case for it. The story also said she can bench 225 and squat 405, to which Dave says he hasn't laughed that hard in weeks.
Dave notes 2 promotions that are apparently starting. One is called Urban Wrestling Federation and is gonna be based on hip-hop and target Spanish audiences and they're bringing in Koko B Ware to build it around. On the other end of the spectrum is the Christian Wrestling Federation, which is wrestling without the vulgarity and sexual stuff and at the end of the show, all the wrestlers return to the ring for a big group prayer. I'm absolutely baffled that neither of these clearly brilliant ideas are still around today.
ECW's Heat Wave PPV will take place in Los Angeles which is the first time the company will attempt a west coast show. Dave thinks it might be interesting since that's XPW territory (boy, I'll say....)
Regarding the incident mentioned last week with Sandman being drunk at a show in Florida and making a scene in the ring, word is it got heated backstage afterward. First, Tommy Dreamer and Sandman got into it physically but were quickly broken up. Then shortly after, Jack Victory and Sandman got into a fight that left Sandman bleeding from a cut above the eye.
Notes from WCW Nitro: we're starting out at peak stupid this week. Commentator Scott Hudson did the entire show shirtless because on Nitro last week, Vince Russo got his shirt torn off and all 3 announcers made jokes about his physique. So Russo thought it would be great to order all 3 announcers do the entire broadcast without shirts to get him over as a heel. Mark Madden and Schiavone apparently refused but Hudson went along with it. They showed Vampiro talking to a mystery man in a robe in a smoke-filled room, who is expected to be revealed as Christopher Daniels. They wanted to name him God or Lord but the Turner standards and practices people shot that down and he still has no name (this ends up going nowhere but yes, it was indeed going to be Daniels before it got forgotten). They also had an idea for Vampiro to set the dressing room on fire and Asya would get burned, to set up a feud with Vampiro vs. KISS Demon (who is Asya's real life fiance). Also, the Millionaire's Club group has been rendered pretty much dead because most of the guys are out. DDP and Flair are on the shelf with injuries. Sting is out ("another vacation, what a great job he has," Dave says) and Luger is, of course, gone after walking out last week over creative differences. They had a bit where Kevin Nash's fake 8-year-old nephew Hunter (3 guesses why they picked that name) gets left with Scott Steiner to babysit and Steiner just leaves him with one of his half-naked women. They did an angle with Vince Russo shaving Ric Flair's head and Dave admits it was a really great angle and really well done (including another run-in by daughter Ashley, aka future Charlotte). But much like everything else in WCW, they left money on the table. This is Ric Flair's trademark hair that he's had for 30 years. They could have turned it into a huge deal on PPV or built up to it or something. Instead, just shaved his head with no notice on free TV. It was a great angle, but it puts all the heat on Russo and the end game is still Flair vs. Russo, which isn't exactly going to sell out arenas. Dave suspects Flair went along with it because he's trying to help David Flair get over but the kid just isn't any good and he's being pushed way beyond his capabilities.
Goldberg was quoted in an AP news story criticizing the direction of WCW. "We are farther away form the kids and closer to pornography. It bothers me. Absolutely. We have a show that has a girl in a bikini in every single segment. I'm not in favor of that. I voice my opinion on everything I have a problem with. We can't shut our eyes on the kids who watch. There is a time and a place for segments where kids can watch with their parents, and we don't have it."
WCW head Brad Siegel called both Bischoff and Russo in for a meeting regarding the 6/7 Nitro rating because everyone was hyping that show up and it was expected to do a bigger rating than it did, but it pretty much flopped and Siegel wanted answers. This Russo/Bischoff team isn't exactly doing great things for WCW, you see.
Christopher Daniels made his WCW in-ring debut at a World Wide taping, losing to Chris Candido in a decent match.
Regarding the incident a couple of weeks ago when a horse almost kicked Terry Funk during a hardcore match, turns out the horse had been traquilized beforehand (Dave believes it had been given PCP) and had also been harnessed. But it still lashed out and kicked Funk when he got too close. Dave points out how we could have seen a tragedy on live TV if the horse had kicked Funk in the head (let's be honest though: getting kicked to death by a horse in a hardcore match would be the most Terry Funk way to die. If you told me that happened, my first response would be, "Yeah that sounds about right.")
Random WCW notes: WCW is once again considering bringing Dennis Rodman back in for some matches, in hopes of getting some publicity out of it. Elix Skipper was in a serious car accident and will be out for a few weeks. Lance Storm's debut has been delayed due to visa issues.
WWF has hired a guy named Stuart Snyder to be the President and COO of WWF. That position used to belong to Linda McMahon but she has been given the new title of CEO while Vince remains Chairman of the Board. Snyder used to work for USA Network and will be helping lighten the workload on Linda. He'll handle more of the day-to-day stuff while Linda will focus on Wall Street and stockholder business. He will report directly to Vince and Linda (not sure how long he was with WWF, but he later became the head of Cartoon Network I believe).
Judgement Day is looking to be around a 1.05 buyrate which will be the lowest WWF buyrate this year (but still, like, 10x the numbers WCW is doing on PPV).
Triple H fought Chris Jericho in probably the best Raw match of the year and Dave actually says that Triple H put on a master class in how to get yourself over, get your opponent over, protect the integrity of the title, and entertain fans all at once. Dave says with a match this good, it's an easy thumbs up for the entire show, even if everything else sucks. Luckily it didn't because Benoit vs. Matt Hardy was really good too. But Dave really heaps the praise on Triple H for this one (yeah, 2000-era Triple H was absolutely on fire before injuries slowed him down and paranoia led to him burying everyone).
Jim Ross sent all the wrestlers a memo saying they can't do anymore media appearances or interviews without office approval. Vince McMahon apparently feels that doing interviews with other media outlets is basically competition for their own website and they want to be in control of when WWF wrestlers talk to the media and what is said publicly.
Random WWF notes: Chyna is doing a fitness video that will be released soon. Billy Gunn is expected back from injury in September. Shawn Michaels may still be used sporadically, but there are no real plans to bring him back for any weekly role.
NCAA heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar signed a WWF developmental deal this week and will start in OVW this summer. Lesnar will be the 3rd NCAA wrestling champion under contract, with the other 2 being Kurt Angle and Sylvester Terkey. Dave talks about the history of NCAA champs in pro wrestling and starts listing names like Verne Gagne, Dick Hutton, etc. He doesn't know about Lesnar or Terkey, but he predicts Angle is going to end up being a top star in this business sooner rather than later (2 out of 3 did okay for themselves. The other guy probably would have done better if his name was Sylvester Ham though).
Giants Stadium in New York and Soldier Field in Chicago have officially been named as 2 of the home fields for upcoming XFL teams.
Curt Hennig's WCW contract expires soon and it's thought that WWF isn't interested. At 42 years old, and after years of being a big star, there's doubt that he would even want to come in and accept a lower card role. They have no plans of pushing him as a focal point of the company and think he might not be easy to work with if they want to use him to put over others. There's also the question of whether WWF would accept Lex Luger back if his current WCW issues lead to him being fired. Henning is still a good worker and while he left WWF on bad terms, they weren't unfixable. Luger, of course, left on the worst terms possible, literally walking out of a WWF house show on Sunday and showing up on WCW Nitro 24 hours later. So it's more likely that Hennig will end up in WWF than Luger, but Dave doesn't seem to think either guy has much of a shot (Hennig returns at the 2002 Rumble. Luger, to this day, hasn't stepped foot back in WWF or even gotten a HOF induction, although he has done a couple of DVD interviews and things like that).
NEXT MONDAY:more on AJPW/NOAH split, WWF/USA trial continues, Vince Russo "quits" WCW again, and more...
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