Tuesday, 29 November 2016

I Am Retro

I think one day, we will all get to a point in our lives where everything we love will in one way or another become, retro. That is of course the nice way of saying old, the problem with old we associate to fragile, weak and ultimately death. But if Pokemon is the proof of anything it is that some old things never truly die. And now I am at that point in my life, I feel like I am looking back on any memories I can muster, and oddly enough scatter through my fandoms are precious memories of my younger years. I can tell you my first issue of Daredevil I ever bought in a dollar bin or the first Nintendo 64 game that me and my brother purchased on Boxing Day. It seems like a small moment in the massive ocean that is the galaxy of our own existence, but every tiny cell matters. And I think I am getting way better with my memory and if that is thanks to these kind of moments, I am not going to take that for granted at all. 

This past weekend, I turned 30. Welcome to retro,

I wanted to take the time to say thank you, to everyone who made not only this weekend an incredible time but to everyone who was there for me in some way or another. The truth is I wouldn't be who I am without all of you who have touched my life in some way or another.

To my family, everyone in Canada and Chile, you have all always been with me. To my mother, my greatest hero, the strongest person I know. A women who defined herself through love, compassion and kindness. If I can be half of what you are today, I know I've lived a good life. To my father, I missed you so much and these years getting to know each other have been absolutely wonderful. I hope to share more memories with you soon. To my sister, thank you for inspiring my creative mind from a young age, you are so damn talented and creative, you don't need anyone to approve of your talents. Keep creating beautiful art sis. To my brother, you know how much love you, I hated being away from you when we were kids and some days it's hard being oceans apart. But the fact is you have gone where you said you wanted to go, spoken the language you were never meant to speak. Nothing is impossible for you Fernando, and I wish I can show you what I am capable of as well. To my Grandparents as well in Chile, the humble little farm of Maipo, that safe place from my childhood. I know my Grandmother is always thinking about us, having all of us in her prayers and keeping us safe. To my Grandfather, such a kind and strong man, my role model growing up. I will be coming back to see you guys soon. To my uncles and aunts, cousins and nephews as well, I love you guys and not a day goes by where I don't think about you guys as well. And as well to family friends and partners to my parents, thank you for everything you have done for me, I wish I was a better kid some days but I am going to make sure I am a better man today. 

My dream come true...
Caitlin, my beautiful girlfriend. It's only been a year but it has been a wonderful year together, one that I will never forget. You are such a strong and independent women, as smart as you are absolutely talented at all the things you do from dance to guitar and songwriting. You inspire me every single day, to do as much as I can and more every single day. A kind spirit who knows how to love every single creature on this planet. And quick thank you to all the wonderful people I got to meet this year through you, family and friends who confirm to me all the incredible things that you are. And a big thank you to Bella Mae, yes she is a dog but doesn't make her love and energy any less. 

This is Bella, my "Woof Muffin".
My friends, my wonderful incredible strange family. From different times and places, all of you who keep me in your hearts, I can't thank you enough and you haven't seen the best of what I can do yet, so keep watching. But I did want to mention a few names for sure as well, those who have stayed close to me over these years. My roommate and brother, Toby. You are the best dude, the Rocket to my Groot or the Flounder to my Ariel. You've had to endure a lot of my silliness over the years but at the end of the day you've got a big heart inside. You are going to do some great things in this life, you hardworking little dude. To my big brothers, Aaron and Vince and as well as many incredible artist that I have the privilege to call friends; Paul, Kev, Shane, Hugh, Dave, etc. There is a lot but you guys know who you are and you know I love y'all. I wouldn't be half the artist that I am today if it wasn't for your guidance and friendship. Seeing my fellow artist create everyday keeps me inspired as well and makes me want to create more and more. To my fellow brothers, George, Drew and Steve. You guys are the absolute best, it's been an incredible journey so far and I can't wait to see where we all go from here. 

Yes there are many of you in my life and even if I didn't mention you personally, know that I love you and everything you've done for me. 

So yes, this is a big thank you blog, but if I have learned anything in my life it is that we need to be thankful for all of life's little moments and the beautiful people who make the world what it is today. I have seen my fare share of things in my life so far, and yet so little, this world is waiting to be explored. And so I just want to close with a last thank you to you, the reader. I hope you enjoyed this and past posts as well and keep coming back. Until then, keep chasing the storm.

Monday, 21 November 2016

Mail Magic #1

So as you may or may not know, I love me some Magic:The Gathering. A trading card game I've been playing ever since the Pokemon trading game wasn't filling the void anymore and a very special pass time activity to me, mainly based on how much my big brothers and friends love to play the game as well. So I've recently joined up on Puca Trade, a card trading site which let's you trade cards for points which then other traders use and send you cards you've been looking for, straight to your front door. Nothing makes a bad day great like opening an FNM promo card or that rare card from the set you never got a chance to play. I've been doing this for a little while now, and I think it's a really cool and great system. And sure there have been complaints, but it mostly comes from people who are looking for "value" or something to that degree. Honestly the way I see it, if I have a bunch of cards from Kamigawa and you need them, I will send them. If you've got cards from Shards of Alara, send them this way. That's all there is to it. Not arguing about dual lands for 2 hours and not making a trade at the end, send your cards to players who want them, why not? Anyways, I thought it would be cool to share with my Storm Clouds all the different cards I received and explain why I was looking for these cards, also looking into some strategy in casual formats like Commander and Cube. With that said, let's get started! 

•Immolating Glare (Game Day Promo): This is the full art promo for Oath of the Gatewatch release day tournaments. This is the one you get for participating in the tournament, which I never got a chance to do. So getting this sweet looking uncommon is just too sweet! An amazing art of an Eldrazi getting destroyed.

The card itself is fine overall, for two mana (1W) you can destroy an attacking creature. Great in any format, particularly in the early game since most early attacks won't have the ability to regenerate or even counter the spell. Not really great late game if you are facing Hexproof or Indestructible monsters coming your way. 

I use this in my current Boros Commander deck. 

•Priest of Norn (Mirrodin Bisiege): At a glance a 1/4 Vigilance creature for three mana (2W) doesn't look like much. Does anyone remember Standing Troops? But add a little bit of Phyrexia in the form of Infect and you got one hell of a creature now. With Infect you can casually attack for one in the early game before really big creatures come down. You force your opponent to turn their 3/3 or 2/2 creatures into 2/2 or 1/1 or even have them killed off. The alternative is taking a Poison counter and then start counting to ten until game over.

Infect is an extremely powerful effect in any and every format it is available in and I didn't get a lot of these cards in general, I've got a lot of these Infect cards on my trade list. Going to see if I can work on an Infect deck of sorts for Commander. 

•Fuel for the Cause (Mirrodin Bisiege): When you are paying four mana (2UU) for a Counterspell, it better have a good effect or can tip. Proliferate is a very good effect to have on a card. Especially in decks that use a lot of Planeswalkers, Infect, Energy, Experience or +1/+1 counters as well. 

I've got one of these in my Simic Commander deck, but I needed one for Mizzix deck. 

•Treasure Mage (Mirrodin Bisiege): This card works really well in any Artifact combo strategy. For three mana (2U) you get a 2/2 creature that searches your library for your big bad machines, any artifact card with converted mana cost 6 or greater. And you can par this up with a Show and Tell or even a Sneak Attack. 

You really can't go wrong with Treasure Mage, just be ready to cause some damage as soon as you play him. Watch out for discard and countering cards.

•Unsubstantiate (Game Day Promo): Another full art promo card, this time from the recent trip to Innistrad in Eldritch Moon. What we get is an extremely versatile spell for two mana (1U), which is perfectly paired with Isochron Sceptre. You can choose to return any spell or creature to it's owner's hand. Perhaps the best counter card in Standard at the moment, this card can do so much. It can disrupt early and throw an opponents tempo off and in a pinch it can get rid of a big attacker or blocker that is in your way. 

Very cool art as well, as with all of the full art promo cards. I am probably going to try and have one of these in all my Blue decks in Commander and Cube as well. I love me some Unsubstantiate!

•Incorrigible Youths (Game Day Promo): The last of the three full art promo cards I received in this trade, this one is from Shadows Over Innistrad set. A 4/3 Vampire that can be played for three mana (2R Madness costs) and with Haste, meaning it can attack right away for some early damage. Pretty good. You'll need to be playing with some discard mechanics and/or other Vampires to really get the most out of them, but even in a Cube deck it can do great damage. 

A solid addition to any BR Vampire deck strategy for sure, in Standard or Commander. 

•Into the Core (Mirrodin Bisiege): I honestly didn't even know this card existed, now sure Shatterstorm destroy all artifacts in play and this only targets two, the big difference is in the exile effect. I find in Commanders a lot of permanents and spells have plenty of ways of coming back into the game. Not to mention indestructible effects on a lot of artifacts and you are going to need some strong answers. 

At instant speed as well, you can respond to two darksteel artifacts coming your way. You can take away mana sources or combo pieces, maybe even that Darksteel Foundry. 

I think I am going to place it in one of my Commander decks for sure, possibly Mizzix or Brion.

•Brass Squire (Mirrodin Bisiege): And speaking of Brion! In my current Boros deck, I use a lot of Equipment cards. It's one of the strategies of the deck, a lot of WR cards that benefit from Equipment. And Brass Squire helps the team out a lot, for three Colorless mana you get 1/3 who is able to tap and attach any Equipment you control to any of your creatures. 

This works really well in my kind of deck with all the different Equipment cards and seeing how a lot of creatures will be launched by Brion, Brass Squire helps get the next creature ready for action. 

A pretty low key card, highly suggest it for Equipment based decks. 

•Hedron Archive (Battle for Zendikar): I am going to say this now for every Commander player. Get your Archives now, don't wait until they are gone. I got 4 more copies in this trade and I value you these artifacts very high. For 4 Colorless mana, you get a mana rock that gives you 2 extra Colorless or can be ditch for two cards. 

What deck couldn't use a mana boost or some emergency card drawing? Every single deck needs one of these and that's why I wanted to get them now, before they surge in price. Although I wouldn't be surprised to find them in future Commander products.

•Phyrexian Juggernaut (Mirrodin Bisiege): Holy butts! A 5/5 Infect creature for 6 Colorless mana. Sign me up. The attack every turn if able drawback isn't a big deal at all, you know being 5/5 and having Infect. You can pump this guy up, place Rancor on him or any Equipment you have available and it gets more vicious. Even a 10/10 creature blocking it will be brought all the way down to a 5/5 size, which is brutal! 

Going in my Brion deck for sure, I can't wait to play this against my opponents. It's a wild Phyrexian bull on the loose and no one is safe! 

So there you have it, a whole lot of Game Day promos and plenty of cards from Mirrodin Bisiege, it's nice to get cards from sets you didn't play too much or at all. Which I find is the beauty of Puca Trade, highly suggest you guys check it out here and big thanks to trader ASGARDIAN for sending me these cards in the first place, I am going to make sure these cards find a good home in my decks! 

So what do you guys think, any of these cards caught your attention? Any strategy suggestions you have? Let me know in the comments below or you can reach me over on Twitter @ChileanStorm on Instagram and Tumblr as well. Thanks again guys, and as always keep chasing the Storm!

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

The Elephant in the Room

Well I would feel almost silly trying to write about anything, seeing as I really wanted to do a post on Nintendo 64 and other such things that don't carry that much weight in the big scheme of things. And everyone is trying to make sense of things this morning and I was wrestling with this issue for hours last night, I really need to get my thoughts out there. 

So last night the people of United States of America elected as president, Donald Trump.

Is this the end of days, the beginning of the zombie apocalypse or something catastrophic as such. Honestly, it could very well be. But it could be fearful speculation as well, 4 years from now we could still be here and ready for change. Or we could be 4 years into a yearly Purge celebration. I don't know, you don't know, no one really knows for sure. We may not know what is in store for the USA or the world for that matter, but you know what we do know, our actions. I know that as soon as I am done writing this post, I am going to shower and make some dinner, take out the recycling in the kitchen, I am going to text my girlfriend and tell her how much I love her, I am going to record a podcast with my roommate, I am going to sketch, I am going to go to bed and sleep to be ready for the next day. What I am trying to say here is that we are in control of our actions and how they affect the world around us, regardless of who sits at the top of the political mountain. I have a choice to be kind, compassionate and caring. And just as so, I have a choice to be rude, selfish and close minded. You my dear reader choose the path you walk and the world you create. 

So yes, Trump is president. That doesn't stop you from being someone who raises awareness of the causes that need light, that helps when help is needed, that works towards a better future every single day. You know what you need to fight for, so stand up and fight.

That being said, if things go South all the way straight to hell, you are going to have to fight with everything you've got. And if Trump voters think having him in the White House is a free pass for homophobia, sexist remarks, xenophobia or kind or disgusting behaviour, you couldn't be more incorrect. If you are looking to be seen as the amazing unique snowflake that you think you are, go out and do something with your life. Don't be mad when people get together to raise awareness or fight an injustice in today's world. Everyone has the right to speech, no one has the right to be a human pile of shit. And yes that does mean ignoring women rights, that means not seeing Black Lives Matters as a principal issue, that means not being aware or considerate of sexual orientations and gender pronouns. And if this sounds like too much to do then consider this, it's about opening your world up. Learning about others and how the world is growing and changing everyday. Adapt and evolve, step outside. Hell, I think if we did become more aware of all our different concerns and needs, we could probably joke about it more with new friends. Are people pretty sensitive now in days? Yes, but only because nothing is being done to connect the world together, we use insults and hate to destroy any kind of progress we've made. If someone gets offended, they are allowed to be offended. It's not your job to defend your actions, apologise and get to know them better, you'll make a new friend or two instead. 

So to you, I say this; reach out and help someone who needs help. Stand up and fight for everything that makes us incredible. If you can talk to one stranger on the other side of track, you will see that we are all on the same train that is this life. Let's have a fun beautiful ride together. Keep chasing the Storm.

Sunday, 6 November 2016

Giveaway Ideas

Hey guys, Stormy here and I wanted to give y'all a heads up here on my giving away project that I was working on. Okay, so here is the deal. I've got a lot of things on the table to give away, a lot of comic books and DVD's and even a few CD's...if you kids want them. And knowing that many people will want them, I need to figure out how to spread the joy. Now you may or may not know, I've had a few tables at a few different comic book conventions and you may have noticed that I haven't been on the scene for sometime now. Well I am telling you this here and I am telling you this now, the ChileanStorm is coming back!

But what about that free stuff? Well here is the thing, you want some free stuff then you've got to come by my table and say hi, and I will have a box of free things there for everyone. I might have a little bin for loonies if you want to grab more stuff. I want to try to have everyone at least get one item, but if you see stuff you really really want, by all means let me know and you can take it home.

So there you have it, now you know to come check out my little art table for some free stuff and who knows maybe some new art prints or a cool new fresh comic from yours truly. I will let you know here where and when my next shows will be, so be sure to check out the page often and stay update with me over on my Twitter, @ChileanStorm and also on Instagram and Tumblr. Until then, keep chasing the Storm!