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Weekly Worm Character Discussion #139: The Bugs of Worm

WORM (& POTENTIAL WARD) SPOILERS BELOW

Weekly Character Discussion: The Bugs of Worm

Descriptions:
Warning: The following descriptions may contain mention of disturbing topics for those with an aversion to bugs.
Atlas: A giant beetle.[0]
Fire Ants: Fire ants are a variety of ant species with a painful sting and a sensation of similar to that of being burned by a fire. The workers are can range in size from 2 millimetres to 6 millimetres within the same colony, and the queens and male drones are larger still. One should take extreme caution to avoid fire ants, as the experience of being stung by these ants is quite unpleasant.[1]
Darwin's Bark Spiders: Darwin's bark spider [...] is an orb-weaver spider that produces the largest known orb webs, ranging from 900 to 28,000 square centimetres (140 to 4,340 sq in), with bridge lines spanning up to 25 metres (82 ft). [...] Its silk is the toughest biological material ever studied, over ten times tougher than a similarly-sized piece of Kevlar.[2]
Dragonflies: Adult dragonflies are characterized by large, multifaceted eyes, two pairs of strong, transparent wings, sometimes with coloured patches, and an elongated body. [...] Dragonflies are agile fliers, while damselflies have a weaker, fluttery flight. Many dragonflies have brilliant iridescent or metallic colours produced by structural coloration, making them conspicuous in flight. An adult dragonfly's compound eyes have nearly 24,000 ommatidia each.[3]
Japanese Spider Crabs: The Japanese spider crab [...] is a species of marine crab that lives in the waters around Japan. It has the largest leg span of any arthropod. It is the subject of fishery and is considered a delicacy.[4]
Krill: Krill are small crustaceans [...] found in all the world's oceans. The name "krill" comes from the Norwegian word krill, meaning "small fry of fish", which is also often attributed to species of fish.[5]
Butterflies: Butterflies are insects in the macrolepidopteran clade Rhopalocera from the order Lepidoptera, which also includes moths. Adult butterflies have large, often brightly coloured wings, and conspicuous, fluttering flight.[6]
Brown Recluse Spiders: Brown recluse spiders are usually between 6 and 20 millimetres (0.24 and 0.79 in), but may grow larger. While typically light to medium brown, they range in color from whitish to dark brown or blackish gray. [...] These spiders usually have markings on the dorsal side of their cephalothorax, with a black line coming from it that looks like a violin with the neck of the violin pointing to the rear of the spider, resulting in the nicknames fiddleback spider, brown fiddler, or violin spider.[7]
Lady Bugs: Coccinellidae [...] is a widespread family of small beetles ranging in size from 0.8 to 18 mm (0.03 to 0.71 inches). The family is commonly known as ladybugs in North America, and ladybirds in Britain and other parts of the English-speaking world. Entomologists prefer the names ladybird beetles or lady beetles as these insects are not classified as true bugs.[8]
Bees: Bees are flying insects closely related to wasps and ants, known for their role in pollination and, in the case of the best-known bee species, the western honey bee, for producing honey and beeswax. [...] There are over 16,000 known species of bees in seven recognized biological families. They are found on every continent except Antarctica, in every habitat on the planet that contains insect-pollinated flowering plants.[9]
Cockroaches: Depending on the particular species, adult cockroaches measure between 1 and 5 centimetres in length and range in colour from black to reddish-brown. Most species of cockroaches in Canada have wings but are not capable of sustained, powered flight. Some species may use their wings to glide for short distances. Each cockroach has pair of long antennae and six legs, which are typically long and spiny. The body is flattened back to front and oval-shaped, as a result, they are perfectly equipped for hiding in small cracks or crevices that touch both the topside and the underside of the body. Immature cockroaches, known as nymphs, look like smaller wingless versions of fully grown adults.[10]
Fleas: Flea, the common name for the order Siphonaptera, includes 2,500 species of small flightless insects that survive as external parasites of mammals and birds. Fleas live by consuming blood, or hematophagy, from their hosts. Adult fleas grow to about 3 mm (0.12 in) long, are usually brown, and have bodies that are "flattened" sideways or narrow, enabling them to move through their host's fur or feathers. They lack wings, but have strong claws preventing them from being dislodged, mouthparts adapted for piercing skin and sucking blood, and hind legs extremely well adapted for jumping. They are able to leap a distance of some 50 times their body length, a feat second only to jumps made by another group of insects, the superfamily of froghoppers. Flea larvae are worm-like with no limbs; they have chewing mouthparts and feed on organic debris left on their host's skin.[11]
Brown-tail Moths: This species was accidentally introduced to the United States in the 1890s. During the early 20th century it was present from eastern Connecticut northward into New Brunswick, Canada, but a subsequent severe population collapse reduced the territory to parts of coastal Maine, and Cape Cod, Massachusetts, by the late 20th century. One theory for the decline appeared to be parasitism by a fly introduced to combat gypsy moths.[12]
Cheiracanthium mildei: An adult C. mildei is usually 7–10 millimetres (0.3–0.4 in) in body size. Each leg ends in double claws, and the front pair is significantly longer (up to two times the size, however it is clearly shorter than in C. inclusum species). The eyes have a tapetum lucidum that reflects back to the light source once lit, suggesting that the spiders have good to excellent vision and are agile prey hunters. Although this spider can bite humans, the effects appear to be mild.[13]
Mosquitoes: The adult females of most species have tube-like mouthparts (called a proboscis) that can pierce the skin of a host and feed on blood, which contains protein and iron needed to produce eggs. Thousands of mosquito species feed on the blood of various hosts ⁠— vertebrates, including mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and some fish; along with some invertebrates, primarily other arthropods. This loss of blood is seldom of any importance to the host.[14]
Houseflies: The housefly [...] is believed to have evolved in the Cenozoic era, possibly in the Middle East, and has spread all over the world as a commensal of humans. It is the most common fly species found in houses. Adults are grey to black, with four dark, longitudinal lines on the thorax, slightly hairy bodies, and a single pair of membranous wings. They have red eyes, set farther apart in the slightly larger female.[15]
Maggots: A maggot is the larva of a fly (order Diptera); it is applied in particular to the larvae of Brachycera flies, such as houseflies, cheese flies, and blowflies, rather than larvae of the Nematocera, such as mosquitoes and Crane flies. A 2012 study estimated the population of maggots in North America alone to be in excess of 3*105 trillion.[16]
Thanks to sammax, Kaisheng, Torvaun, manbearpigbear, Eiko, Summer, AssassinZ, Domefossil, and potential others for help compiling a semi-exhaustive list of named bugs in Worm!
Fanart:
Creator Art Thread
pepecharlielepew Watercolour Atlas! Reddit
Scarfgirl & Drunkfu Atlas & Co DeviantArt
Atlas & Skitter DeviantArt
Atlas, Part III Reddit
ariirf Dragonflies! Reddit
ArtofLariz Pest Control DeviantArt
On every surface of the bathroom were bugs; Flies, ants, spiders, centipedes, millipedes, earwigs, beetles, wasps and bees. With every passing second, more streamed in through the open window and the various openings in the bathroom, moving with surprising speed. Some crawled in through a gap where the sink drain entered the wall while others emerged from the triangular hole in the ceiling where a section of foam tile had broken off, or from the opened window with peeling paint and cigarette butts squished out in the recesses. They gathered around me and spread out over every available surface; primitive bundles of signals and responses, waiting for further instruction.
I closed my eyes. I could see my reputation going down the tubes. One of the spiders I had been using was the brown recluse. Arguably the most dangerous spider in the United States, more than even the black widow. A single bite from a brown recluse could make a good chunk of the flesh around the bite blacken and rot away. I'd had my bugs biting Lung in the more sensitive parts of his anatomy.
"Let's just say that even with the ability to heal several times faster than your average person, Lung is going to be sitting down to use the toilet."
"I refuse to enjoy Ward until we see more of Bugs? Wait, hold on, they're basically the same character as Noelle." - Generic Comments Bot 2.0
Notes:
  • First appearance: Gestation 1.1
  • General affiliations: The vast majority of intelligent bugs were allied with Skitter.
  • Powerset: "A single bite from a brown recluse could make a good chunk of the flesh around the bite blacken and rot away."[17]
  • Worm Wikia: Atlas
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Dora Anne Mills - Not-So-Brief COVID-19 Update, Sunday May 3rd

https://www.facebook.com/dora.a.mills/posts/10222748744766014

Together, Stamping Out The Fires.
It has been over a week since I have been able to write a post. It turns out, my work has been much more complex and challenging in many ways during this re-opening phase than the closing down and ramping up for the pandemic a few weeks ago.
Since the beginning of this pandemic, I have been monitoring its spread in neighboring states and provinces as well as in Maine. Just as a raging forest fire can send a spark across the border to a neighboring state or country, this virus likewise does not recognize our borders, and can ignite a fire most anywhere there is travel. Given my job at MaineHealth, it has made sense for me to regularly monitor the pandemic in nearby areas as well as their responses to it, since these can easily impact us. More recently, I have been monitoring the re-openings in our neighboring states and provinces so as to share any lessons learned with my colleagues. I thought I’d share some of these gleanings with you.
First, it’s easiest to review what is in common. In places that neighbor us, as well as in Maine and the rest of North America, people living in long term care facilities, people 60 and older, and those with underlying conditions have been hit the hardest. However, most of the underlying conditions are very common, e.g. obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and even being immunocompromised. For instance, • 42% of Americans are obese; • 9% have severe obesity (BMI>40, which is most highly associated with severe COVID-19); • 33% have hypertension; • 11% have diabetes; • 8% have asthma (about 2/3 of them have persistently severe asthma, which is more highly associated with severe COVID-19); • 6% have COPD; and • 3% are immunocompromised.
I mention these data since it seems common that people suggest one approach to this pandemic is for us to return to life as it was in January, and simply ask older people and those with high-risk conditions to self-isolate at home. Given how common these and a few other high-risk conditions are, there would not be enough eligible for the in-person workforce. And, we are still learning about who is at risk for severe disease from this novel virus.
Additionally, it is not uncommon that some younger or otherwise healthy people are hospitalized and/or have died from the virus. As a tragic example, Maine lost a 42-year-old firefighter several days ago to this disease.
Schools and nonessential businesses and services all closed in mid-March across this northeast area. Schools remain closed. The lifelines of most of these economies the last few weeks have been through a combination of transferring services to the internet, through finding creative ways to deliver services (e.g. curbside and no-contact home delivery), and through governmental assistance such as unemployment benefits.
Even with these lifelines, many economic engines have been disabled, especially those that rely on people traveling or congregating, such as tourism and restaurants. Where the virus has set ablaze the biggest fires (e.g. MA & NH), the economies seem hardest hit and reopening may be more complicated.
While there is much in common with how these neighboring states and provinces have closed, the impact of the pandemic and approaches to re-opening have also varied a great deal. Here are some summaries by state and province.
MAINE Maine seems to be flattening the curve, with overall downward trends and dramatic increases in doubling times of cases (from two to thirty-four days), a recent flattening and even decline in hospitalizations (from a high of 55 in mid-April to 33 today), and with relatively low death ratios. However, evidence of community transmission exists in four counties, and ongoing outbreaks are occurring, including in long term care settings across much of the state and at a large food processing plant in Portland with yet-to-be-determined community impact.
Maine started re-opening on May 1st, with the ability for health care to open up, prioritizing time-sensitive care, and for hair salons, pet grooming, drive-in theaters, golf courses, some state parks, auto dealerships, and car washes to open - all with social distancing and hygiene-related restrictions. Gatherings of 10 or more are still prohibited. People traveling to Maine must be quarantined for 14 days. As of May 1st, people need to wear cloth face coverings in public settings where physical distancing is difficult to maintain. Additional business sectors will be able to open up in the coming days and weeks, as long as the pandemic maintains the criteria set by the White House.
NEW HAMPSHIRE Although New Hampshire has approximately the same number of people as Maine (1.3 million people), their case numbers, hospitalizations, and deaths are much higher than Maine’s. For instance, as of Sunday, they have twice as many cases (2,518 vs 1,185); three times as many who are currently hospitalized (103 vs 33); and one and a half times as many deaths (86 vs 57). Most of this illness and death have occurred in the last three weeks, though the increases have generally slowed.
The vast majority - 80 - 91% of the cases, hospitalizations, and deaths - is occurring in the southern counties of Hillsborough, Rockingham, and Strafford, that border Maine or are wedged between Maine and Massachusetts. This hot area is likely in part an extension of the Massachusetts pandemic fire, given the amount of commuter traffic between these counties and Greater Boston.
New Hampshire is just starting to open up. Their stay-at-home order was renewed starting Monday May 4th in a modified way to May 31st. Groups cannot congregate with more than 10 people. Leaving home is only allowed for essential services or visiting a parent, spouse, or child. Time-sensitive surgeries and procedures will be allowed starting Monday the 4th. Hair salons, golf courses, and drive-in theaters may open with modifications and requirements starting May 11th. Restaurants may serve outdoor dining starting May 18th, again with a number of requirements. No indoor dining will yet be allowed. All hotels and lodging are closed until May 31st except for emergency purposes for essential workers and vulnerable populations due to the pandemic. New Hampshire has been the hardest hit New England state when it comes to unemployment claims filed due to the pandemic. Further plans for re-opening are expected to be unveiled in the next couple of weeks.
VERMONT Pandemic activity in Vermont has been quite similar to Maine’s. They have flattened the curve quite well with early and strong social distancing mandates, which for the most part are still in place. Although they have had 897 cases, 10 are currently hospitalized, and 52 have died (all lower numbers than Maine), their case rate and death rates are higher. This is because Vermont’s overall population is less than half (46%) of Maine’s. They too have had a concentration of impact from the pandemic in their urban areas, especially Burlington.
Like Maine and New Hampshire, Vermont is also implementing a phased approach to reopening. Their stay at home order was renewed on May 1st through the 15th. Starting May 4th, some limited construction businesses will be allowed to open, in which no more than 10 are gathered and the work is primarily outdoors. Vermont requires out of state visitors to quarantine for 14 days. The public must wear face coverings when on public transportation, and are strongly encouraged to elsewhere. Restaurants and non-essential retailers are closed except for take-out, curbside pick-up, and delivery services. Hair salons and gyms remain closed. Future opening dates of these other business sectors have not been set.
MASSACHUSETTS Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island have all been hit harder by COVID-19 than the northern three New England states. Massachusetts especially has been surging the last several weeks, and is considered one of the hardest hit areas of the U.S. It has seen over 68,000 confirmed cases. Almost 4,000 were hospitalized a few days ago, and although this number has decreased, over 3,600 are currently hospitalized. Tragically, over 4,000 have also died from this disease in Massachusetts.
Just to put these numbers into perspective, Massachusetts has five times the population of Maine, so if these numbers were in Maine, we would have approximately: • 13,200 cases (we have 1,185); • 720 - 800 hospitalized (we have 33); and • 800 deaths (we have 57).
Massachusetts hospitals have been full beyond their normal capacity. As a result, several alternate care sites were set up in convention centers in urban areas such as Boston and Worcester, and they have been used for COVID-19 patients, especially those who are homeless or are in prisons. With numbers of cases and hospitalizations down these last several days - both early indicators - it appears their surge may have peaked. But only four days ago, they recorded their one-day largest death toll - 252.
Like most other states, Massachusetts has been in a declared state of emergency since early-mid March. From March 23rd and until at least May 18th, gatherings of 10 or more are prohibited; non-essential businesses are closed, including restaurants; there is a stay at home advisory. Although face masks or coverings have been encouraged since early April, as of Wednesday May 6, they are required in public situations when social distancing may not be possible to maintain.
One in four workers in the state have filed for unemployment benefits, making it and New Hampshire the hardest hit in New England in this regard. Although state government is starting to formulate reopening plans, many, including prominent business leaders, recommend a slow reopening. The Massachusetts High Technology Council - comprised of leading business CEOs and health experts, just released their recommendations, linked to below. The Governor has convened a reopening advisory board, which is supposed to provide recommendations by May 18th.
RHODE ISLAND Rhode Island, which has a population of just over one million and less than Maine’s, has seen about 9,300 cases, 300 deaths, and currently has 333 hospitalized - all 5 - 10 times Maine’s counts. They continue with a stay at home order, and all nonessential businesses are closed, including restaurants (except for take-out and delivery). The famed Newport Jazz Festival as well as other festivals, parades, fairs, and carnivals are cancelled for the summer. On April 27th, a set of four phases for reopening was announced, with timelines to be determined. On May 1st, the Governor announced state parks would start to reopen in phases through May, with restrictions on parking and social distancing.
CONNECTICUT With close to 2,500 deaths so far, Connecticut has the 3rd highest death rate in the country, just after New York and New Jersey. It appears some of the reasons for this have to do with its proximity to New York as well as an older population (6th oldest state in the nation) and its population density (4th most densely populated state).
Since April 17th, people in Connecticut are mandated to wear a face covering when out in public when social distancing is not assured. Executive orders are in place until at least May 20th for people to stay at home, for food establishments to be closed except for take-out and delivery, and for all non-essential businesses to be closed, including gyms, movie theaters, and hair and nail salons.
CANADA Although Maine’s border with Quebec and New Brunswick has been closed since the U.S. - Canada border closed March 21st, and is expected to remain closed until at least mid-late May, there is some essential travel between the two countries. Interestingly, non-essential travel within Canada has been restricted, including between provinces such as between Quebec and New Brunswick as well as between some regions within provinces. This has been enforced by checkpoints. (This is not an option that is felt to be allowed in the U.S. under these circumstances, which is why no state has done it.) These travel restrictions may explain some of the factors contributing to lower impact of COVID-19 in Canada.
There is also a 14-day quarantine mandate for those who must enter a province, and the Canadian government’s website specifically states this quarantine also applies to snowbirds arriving home for the summer. Non-residential cottage owners are not allowed to travel to their seasonal homes in Quebec and the Maritime provinces (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island). Schools and non-essential businesses have been closed, and those without pay across Canada have been given $2,000 per month income by the government.
QUEBEC Quebec Province has seen about 30,000 cases and over 2,100 deaths, with about half of each of these in Montreal. The regions bordering Maine (Estrie, Chaudiere-Appalaches, and Bas-Saint-Laurent) have seen in aggregate about 1,300 cases and 34 deaths.
Quebec announced a stepwise reopening of their economy, which begins on May 4th with the gradual lifting of inter-regional travel throughout May. Some businesses (with social distancing restrictions) will open May 4th, including some retail stores (but not malls) with some additional businesses such as construction to be opened May 11th. These business sectors in Montreal are scheduled to open a week later. Tourist sites, festivals, campgrounds, and non-essential lodging remain closed, with timeline and strategies awaiting a more comprehensive plan for reopening the province’s economy.
NEW BRUNSWICK New Brunswick has seen a total of 118 cases, all of whom are recovered, and therefore not contagious. They have seen no deaths due to COVID-19. As of May 2nd, they have been two weeks with no new cases. As a result, members of one household can gather with members of one other household. Churches can now hold outdoor services so long as congregants stay in their cars.
The Premier also announced that the reopening of New Brunswick would be done in four phases, with timelines for the phases beyond this first one to be determined at later dates, depending on disease progression. Currently, elective healthcare, daycares, restaurants, campgrounds, and offices are all closed.
The Premier also recently announced that he feels this is the time to re-tool several sectors, including assuring the province can produce its own food supply with its own workforce to the extent possible, and that health care can be delivered digitally on an ongoing basis.
Borders with other provinces are to remain closed for the foreseeable future, except the one with Prince Edward Island, which might open up in July, if the pandemic situation remains the same.
PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND PEI has only seen 27 cases, no deaths, and only one new case in the last two weeks. PEI announced their four-phase re-opening plan on Friday. After being in a state of lockdown for several weeks, they will now allow some outdoor activities such as walking, hiking, golfing, and fishing, with a number of restrictions, including no more than five people being able to gather. Some non-urgent but time-sensitive health services will be allowed. Daycares will open, but only for essential workers. Restaurants and some limited lodging (B&Bs) are not allowed to open until mid-June, and then, only to PEI residents.
NOVA SCOTIA Nova Scotia has seen 963 cases and 31 deaths. One-third of the cases and 25 of the deaths have been in one long term care facility in Halifax. On Friday, Nova Scotia’s premier announced the lockdown would continue at least through May 17th, but that people could go outside for gardening, to some parks, and to golf ranges. Beaches and golf courses continue to be closed.
PUBLIC HEALTH AND POLITICS Listening to the news, it sometimes seems that public health and economic decisions have been mixing a great deal with political divisiveness, with some from the Right calling for quicker re-openings, and some from the Left asking for a slower pace. But reviewing these neighboring states and provinces, there seems to be much more unity than divisiveness among those making the policy decisions.
For instance, a quick examination of these six states and neighboring Canadian provinces does not reveal a strong association of political affiliation and these decisions. New Hampshire, Vermont, and Massachusetts are all led by Republican governors, whose policies on re-opening seem to vary little from the Democratic governors of Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Maine. Some of the strongest statements about the need for a slow pace for re-openings have come from the Republican governors of Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire as well as from some prominent business leaders (see links below). Additionally, the bipartisan set of northern New England governors have discussed publicly how they are coordinating some of their reopening efforts, are collaborating in the sharing of information, and are communicating regularly.
Even within Canada, the premier of Quebec, who is a centrist, is promoting a much quicker re-opening than his colleague in New Brunswick, who is a conservative. Nova Scotia’s premier is a member of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party, and the PEI premier is a conservative. All three maritime premiers publicly are promoting a very gradual stepwise re-opening. Like the three bipartisan governors of northern New England, they also seem to be collaborating, communicating, and coordinating their efforts.
CONCLUSION We are living with a great deal of uncertainty, especially with a pandemic with a novel virus. The last pandemic this severe raged the earth 102 years ago. The virus does not see our state and countries’ borders. We have to recognize that areas such as southern New Hampshire and Massachusetts, a few minutes’ drive from our border, are still confronting massive outbreaks. And even southern New England and the Mid-Atlantic, where the pandemic is still raging, are only a few hours’ drive away. While the pandemic seems to be smoldering in Maine, it only takes one spark to ignite its fire. This is something that seems to be well recognized across the area's policymakers, including those with the Canadian Maritime provinces, which continue to have closed economies and closed borders between them.
Clearly, there is no playbook as to how to reopen. But one thing is very clear. No matter how open or closed our states and provinces are, each of us as individuals needs to take responsibility to do our part to continue social distancing and not ignite any fires. While Maine and each of these neighboring states and provinces are under various emergency orders, they are only as effective as we the people are at implementing them.
What can we do? We can each become familiar with the new social distancing requirements for businesses and lend them a helping hand in complying (see Maine's criteria linked to just below). Most importantly, we can make sure we as individuals, our household members, and co-workers are practicing good social distancing: wearing a mask when appropriate in public; maintaining six feet distance; washing hands often; and not gathering inappropriately with others. These measures - to one degree or another - are likely a way of life until there is herd immunity achieved with a vaccine. They are also the most effective tools we currently have to fight this virus - to protect us who are carrying out these strategies and importantly, to protect those around us.
This pandemic is likely to threaten us for months if not several years. It is a bigger force than any one of us. However, I know that together, we can stamp out its fire.
Maine’s criteria for different sectors as they reopen https://www.maine.gov/decd/covid-19-prevention-checklists
A podcast of these posts, ready by my daughter is here: https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-ch5zi-d66fd3…
42 year old Maine firefighter dies of COVID-19 https://bangordailynews.com/…/waldo-county-firefighters-de…/
ME plans to reopen Maine https://www.maine.gov/covid19/restartingmaine
ME COVID data review https://www.maine.gov/…/Restarting_Maines_Economy_Slides_04…
ME daily COVID data https://www.maine.gov/…/infe…/epi/airborne/coronavirus.shtml
NH data and map https://www.nh.gov/covid19/
States with highest increases in unemployment due to pandemic https://wallethub.com/…/states-with-the-biggest-incr…/72730/
NH Governor Sununu reopening guidance https://www.governor.nh.gov/…/pre…/20200501-stay-at-home.htm
NH Governor Sununu remarks on opening up in a phased approach https://www.nhpr.org/…/gov-sununu-talks-plans-reopening-nhs…
VT May 1st executive order https://governor.vermont.gov/…/ADDENDUM%2012%20TO%20EXECUTI…
VT May 1st update on stay at home https://accd.vermont.gov/…/update-new-work-safe-additions-s…
VT May 1st update https://www.healthvermont.gov/…/p…/Covid-19-Daily-Update.pdf
VT COVID-19 data https://www.healthvermont.gov/…/co…/current-activity-vermont
VT Governor Scott remarks on re-opening https://governor.vermont.gov/…/governor-phil-scott-announce…
MA data https://www.mass.gov/info-detai…/covid-19-response-reporting
MA High Technology Council’s Reopening Recommendations http://www.mhtc.org/…/…/04/MHTC-COVID-19-Briefing-5.1.20.pdf
MA business leaders recommend slow reopening https://www.bostonglobe.com/…/business-group-recommends-slo…
MA Governor Baker remarks on re-opening https://www.bostonglobe.com/…/heres-what-governor-baker-ha…/
RI overview https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/new-england/rhode-island/…
RI reopening phases (no timelines yet set) https://reopeningri.s3.amazonaws.com/REOPENINGRI_4_27_20_12…
CT overview https://www.courant.com/…/hc-news-coronavirus-connecticut-d…
Canada data and by province https://www.canada.ca/…/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection.ht…
Canada’s response https://www.canada.ca/…/2019-novel-cor…/canadas-reponse.html
Canada's reopening by province https://nationalpost.com/…/reopening-canada-provinces-ontar…
Quebec reopening https://www.quebec.ca/…/gradual-resumption-activities-cov…/…
New Brunswick update https://www.cbc.ca/…/covid-19-outbreak-roundup-pandemic-1.5…
New Brunswick data https://www2.gnb.ca/content/gnb/en.html
Premier of New Brunswick May 2nd press briefing https://www.cbc.ca/…/new-brunswick/no-active-cases-1.5553542
Premier of New Brunswick on retooling the economy https://www.cbc.ca/…/covid-19-new-brunswick-politics-higgs-…
PEI pandemic response https://www.princeedwardisland.ca/en/topic/covid-19
PEI reopening plans https://www.princeedwardisland.ca/…/topic/renew-pei-together
PEI seasonal property owners FAQ https://www.princeedwardisland.ca/…/seasonal-properties-and…
Nova Scotia pandemic response https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/
Nova Scotia easing outdoor activities May 1st https://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/nova-scotia-reopens-parks-and-t…
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All About Joker and Persona: An Extended Background on Smash's Newest Series

Persona is one of my absolute favorite series ever, and I have a lot of sentimental attachment to it. So, the Joker reveal was so extraordinarily perfect to me that I can't help but get the dumbest smile whenever I think about it - I don't think anything in or about a game can top this for me. Predictably, Joker was by far my #1 character choice. I feel like it elevated Ultimate from one of the best games ever made, to one of the best games that will ever be made. So I wanted to make a post about it now that I can think properly again.
Hopefully this post will explain why Joker's inclusion is so cool, why Persona is so great, and provide some background on Persona. There was a fantastic thread by Paulie25 posted a while ago as a crash course on the topic, as well!
I can't help but make this thread super long, I hope it's interesting!
(Also, Reddit Enhancement Suite will allow you to view links in the post itself.)
So, let us start the game.
Shin Megami Tensei
When talking about Persona, especially in a Nintendo context, I think it's right to also mention it's sort of "parent" series, Shin Megami Tensei, or SMT. See, Persona is a spin-off of SMT, but it became more popular than it's parent series over time. Don't let that fool you though, because SMT is also a fantastic series and even with Persona existing, there's nothing quite like it.
Keep in mind this section is about things that are mostly specific to SMT, so what you read here isn't necessarily reflective of Persona. We'll get to that soon.
SMT games are RPGs by Atlus (whose parent company is now Sega), and usually focus on a single individual or a small group as they sift through an apocalypse that has reduced the Earth to rubble. The world has been claimed by conflicting forces of Law and Chaos, which are comprised of beings from religion and myth, ranging from Angels to Onis, Horus to Cu Cuchulain, Satan (yes, that Satan), to Metatron to Vishnu. There's a ton of different demons (they are generally referred to collectively as demons regardless of affiliation) to battle, fuse together, and... talk to? Yes, a massive part of the SMT experience is talking with demons - about what humanity is worth, about the apocalypse, and about whether you'll join them to fight for a world ruled by law or a world that has no order. Or they'll even do trivial things like hassle you for money, they'll be really peculiar, or just generally rude - especially series mascot, Jack Frost. Either way though, you'll be trying to get these demons to join you. You can usually do this by fighting them, persuading them, or sometimes blackmail, the works.
SMT is a really great series and definitely worth a look - either alongside or seperate from Persona. They are different enough so that if you don't like one, you may like the other - though there's definitely a lot of overlap, so I recommend checking out both! Persona is generally more approachable, though.
As for why SMT is especially important in a Nintendo context - SMT is actually often available on Nintendo consoles, and usually exclusive. Though, what's probably the best in the series, SMT 3: Nocturne, is a PS2 exclusive, so unfortunately it's not on regular Nintendo consoles. Though, it's not especially difficult to get a hold off if you have something that can play PS2 games. This is the most recommended one.
And:
  1. SMT 4 and 4 Apocalypse are available for 3DS. They are the most recent games currently. They are the most approachable in the main series, as well. I'd recommend 4 first, as it's closer to the series standard than Apocalypse.
  2. SMT Strange Journey is on the DS. It's highly advised to play the original DS version, Strange Journey Redux is generally considered weaker than the original. Strange Journey is really tough, but often considered one of the best in the series.
  3. SMT 5 is coming... eventually, as a Switch exclusive. It's kind of unclear how far along in development it is, but it should hopefully be out in the next couple years. Maybe we'll get to see Unreal Engine work it's magic on Jack Frost sometime soon-ish.
  4. There's also other SMT spin off titles like the SRPG Devil Survivor available for 3DS. They might be worth a shot if you're interested! They're a bit more similar in tone to games like The World Ends With You. Definitely different from the mainline series, but still strong.
Also, chances are you've seen the little "Featuring Dante from the Devil May Cry series" emblem. Well, that's from Nocturne. Yes, Dante from the Devil May Cry series is featured in that game.
Background on Persona
Persona, as previously stated, is a spin-off of SMT that has become a popular series in it's own right - it's actually become considerably more popular than SMT itself. These games are RPGs, like their predecessors, and share some cues with SMT in some aspects - the main link is that the demons from SMT are featured in Persona's combat system, and are seen as Personas, manifestations of someone's soul that can be used to fight, or in some cases, provide support in other ways. Personas are essentially Stands, and more or less act the same way. Meaning, they appear on command to fight on your behalf, and don't normally speak except in select cases, since they're essentially extensions of the characters they belong to. However, while your party members only have one Persona at a time, you hold the Wild Card, which allows you to fuse the Personas you acquire into stronger ones, all the way from the lowly Pixie to the mighty Thor and beyond. Each Persona has it's own strengths and weaknesses, and they can inherit abilities from the Personas that they are fused from. It's very rewarding to put together a Persona you're especially fond of, since they're pretty customizeable. In Persona 5, the SMT demons are also seen as Shadows, the hostile denizens of the "counterpart world" that you explore. But more on that later.
SMT and Persona are also very different in a lot of ways, however, and this is mostly due to one key difference - SMT is about talking to demons, but Persona is about talking to people. This informs the biggest differences between the two series. The setting has been changed from a post apocalyptic world (usually Tokyo) to modern and (usually) urban Japan, and the questions about law and chaos prompted by self-righteous demons are now melancholic, tender, and often relatable musings by (usually) ordinary people about how to deal with life treating you unfairly. This is where a lot of the appeal of the series is.
But before I continue, I want to mention that Persona 1 & 2 (& Persona 2-2 (Persona 2 is comprised on the first game, Innocent Sin, and the second game, Eternal Punishment)) are very different from the "modern" Persona games, 3, 4, & 5. This is because Persona was much closer to older SMT titles when it was first conceived, and were made around 1996-2000. The series was dormant for about 6 years, until Persona 3 was developed under Katsura Hashino (who is currently working on Switch game "Project Re: Fantasy") and founded many of the elements that comprise modern Persona - like the calendar system and the ever iconic Social Links.
Because of their age and changing conventions, Persona 1 & 2 are mostly recommended after trying out 3, 4, and/or 5 (they still have great things going for them, but are less approachable). Now I'm going to focus on 3, 4, and 5, so some of the things mentioned from now on may not apply to 1 & 2.
The first two paragraphs in this section mention some pretty different sounding things, and that's because of a key aspect of Persona - it has two hemispheres that play off of each other. How intertwined those parts are depends on which game, but principally Persona is made of a dungeon crawling RPG half, and a social sim half - hanging out with your classmates, messing around in the arcade, helping people, fishing, going to the movies; you play through almost every day of the game's calendar year and really get acquainted with your surroundings. It's highly recommended to play these games at your own pace, because they really shine when you can immerse yourself in them. I'd avoid trying to speed through, because they are long. Like, 60+ hours is expected for your first playthrough. But every hour has something really great, and the culmination of it all results in something even greater than the sum of it's already wonderful parts.
You begin the game in a normal Japanese town/city, but eventually gain access to an alternate version of an area, or another world. A series constant is that early in the game, the mysterious Igor and his various assistants will instruct you on the rules of this land in the ethereal Velvet Room (which looks different in each game), while it's signature, enchanting theme plays. He emphasizes something in particular - that the bonds you make in the real world will give you strength in the other world. This isn't just a narrative deal - the bonds you create, called Social Links, or Confidants - each of which correspond to one of the major arcana of the tarot deck of cards, are leveled up by improving your relationship with others by spending time with them. Strengthening those relationships will make your Personas stronger when you fuse them, and sometimes even grant direct battle enhancements. Seeing these two halves compliment each other gives Persona it's unique identity, and it's difficult to find anything quite like it.
Currently, Persona games are mostly only available for Sony consoles, but I can see that changing in the future, especially now with Joker's inclusion. Either way, I can't recommend the games enough. The spin-offs Persona Q and Persona Q2 are available for 3DS, but to really get the most out of those games you'll want to play the main series games first.
So, why is Persona cool?
Firstly, the premise is great, playing almost every day of a calendar year and interacting with the people of the city from different walks of life makes for a fun, and often thought provoking and tender experience. The game lets you play the way you want - you are encouraged to go at your own pace and see what you want to see. The series was designed around picking and choosing what you want to do, more or less like real life, so it's up to you to pursue the Social Links you want, and for you to prioritize what matters most to you - do you care more about being smart, charming, or confident? Which do you want to work on first? Do you care about being charming enough to gain approval and get closer to a few people, or do you care more about your friends who don't require that? Who are you more invested in, the old couple who are afraid the memory of their late son will fade away, or the odd monk who gives you life advice in the club at the mall? Or maybe you were more interested in the shady businessman who tries to get you involved in his schemes? Which of your party members do you want to focus on the most? Are you focused on supporting your friend who's been ostracized but helped you get through the first few weeks at school, or are you focused above all else on helping one of your friends get past life as a shut-in? Would you rather work on your realtionship with the back-alley doctor or the former yakuza store owner? There's always a rush when your favorite character is available to talk to, since they have their own schedules that they adhere to, so it feels especially satisfying to catch them on a good day.
You can manage to do a lot of this stuff in one playthrough if you manage your time well, but the overall design of having to choose what you are more focused on helps the game shine, and really makes the gameplay systems come together. It's impressive, the social sim aspects are just as strong as, sometimes maybe even more so, than the RPG part of the game, which is no slouch either. The battles are snappy and satisfying, fusing Personas to get stronger is very fun and rewarding, and there is an immense satisfaction when your fusion nets you a strong Persona that corresponds to a Social Link you've been working on. The bosses are often tough and interesting as well.
The games also not only have a unique identity within the landscape of games as a whole, they also have unique identities from each other, and you can see this through a lot of aspects, but especially in the art and music. Each game has a key color, Persona 3's cool blue, Persona 4's bright yellow and Persona 5's striking crimson, each of which inform the feel of each game. We'll talk about Persona 5 a lot in it's own section, so I think now is a good time to go over 3 and 4, which also both cannot be recommended enough if they at all interest you, just like with 5.
Persona 3's key color of cool blue reflects the melancholic nature of most of the game. P3 is focused on a pretty heavy topic - death. But more principally it's about moving on, and realizing that life is worth living even when it may not seem like it. It's also about making the most of the time you have, and forging bonds with others so that they'll have memories of you. When I said Persona was about picking and choosing what's most important to you, that's in full force in Persona 3. You can do everything with proper setup and knowledge, but the developers didn't go out of their way to make that happen, because they were more interested in the idea of players prioritizing things just like in real life - and I think that's brilliant, because it creates an incredible thematic resonance with the rest of the game, because it's all about appreciating the time that you have and spending it wisely.
In Persona 3, you are a new student to Tatsumi Port Island's Gekkoukan High School. Upon arrival though, you stay conscious during the Dark Hour - an enigmatic time that appears at midnight that leaves everyone save for a select few people unconscious. During this time, you awaken to your Persona, and are recruited into what will become your party, S.E.E.S., who climb the mysterious tower of Tartarus to eliminate the strange beasts known as Shadows and end the Dark Hour. The game is themed around the Fool's Journey of the tarot, and you as the Fool Arcana face powerful Shadows of each Arcana until you are forced to fight the Death Arcana. It takes a few creative liberties with the tarot, but uses them effectively to create a compelling story.
What's really interesting is that your party often have internal quarrels, and all feel like people vying for their own goals and interpretations of how things are and how they should be. It adds an interesting layer of depth to the internal dynamic of the group, but makes it all the more satisfying once everyone is on the same page. The game does a great job at making it's characters feel like their own people, beyond it's Social Links, party members typically have two major arcs that flesh them out and make them grow, and they have their own schedules and circumstances that they abide by.
P3's visual design is also really incredible, the way it combines interesting, otherworldly designs with with modern architecture in Tartarus creates a sense of familiarity, despite it's distance from the normal. Even with it's age, you can make out some really nice, cool environments across Tasumi Port Island. While the game's shown it's age, there's a certain charm in some of the solutions it found to accommodating the time and circumstances it was made in, with some interesting art choices - there's a large focus on flat colors with minimal shading. This is also present in the animated cutscenes, which results in a really memorable and unique style that gets developed to create really cool things like this piece for the Persona 3 movie.
P3's strong points are also amplified by it's great soundtrack, the sincerity it puts behind tracks like Iwatodai Dorm and the similarly cheesy, yet endlessly hype Mass Destruction make them impossible not to love. Whether you're currently listening to When The Moon's Reaching Out Stars and the complicated feelings behind it, or the eerie yet invigorating Master of Shadow, there's nearly always a song playing that's helping to tie the experience together.
Persona 3's real standard version is Persona 3 FES for the PS2. Another version of the game, Persona 3 Portable for the PSP, added the option to play as a female protagonist with new Social Links and enhanced/updated several battle mechanics. Unfortunately, it doesn't have the free roam featured in the original, you now use a cursor to explore the overworld. It's hard to make a definitive recommendation on which version since each has it's strengths and weaknesses, but if you really value the free roam and better graphics I would go for Persona 3 FES. The female protagonists route in Portable is absolutely wonderful though, I think her version is considerably better than the already great male protagonist route.
Persona 4's key color of bright yellow reflects the comfy small town atmosphere of Inaba. What is interesting though, is that it's indicative of the games themes of evasion from the truth. Behind that peppy yellow and the sleepy atmosphere of Inaba is the fact that there's a serial killer in the town who's methods are unfathomable to the police department. Only those with Stands Personas are going to be able to find out what's going on here. If that sounds familiar, that's because the premise is extraordinarily similar to that of JoJo's Bizzare Adventure Part 4: Diamond is Unbreakable. But for that reason, some of the same things that made Diamond is Unbreakable a strong manga make Persona 4 a strong game.
P4 focuses on the tension between the case and the relief of trying to live life peacefully and fun in Inaba, where you'll be staying with your uncle Dojima, a detective for the local police force. Soon after transferring to Yasogami High School, you and some classmates will investigate a local rumor that you can travel to alternate world through a television. Low and behold, the rumor wasn't unfounded, and you'll find yourself in the backside of the TV, home, among other things, to it's great signature theme. After an enigmatic resident of the world explains how it works, you'll begin to use the world to stop the murderer. This is where the Investigation Team is born. P4 is also heavily about escapism, and what's perhaps the main crux of the game is helping the people who'll become your party members confront Shadow versions of themselves, borne from their repressed malcontent with who they are. For them to awaken their Personas, they'll need to come to terms with themselves. They'll end up being the ones who reach out to the truth when no one else can. The Investigation Team frequently meets up for general activities and gets along well, making for a comfortable atmosphere despite the creeping tension of living in Inaba. It makes for an interesting experience, even within the Persona series.
The art is very pop, and does a lot to emphasize it's more upbeat exterior compared to the other games. This extends to it's battle screens and UI elements. It's further supported by some incredible tracks like Heartbeat, Heartbreak, and Signs of Love, which really build up your time in Inaba as something special. Because of this, along with it's character dynamics and welcoming atmosphere, it's also a good way to get into the series since it's tone leaves it very approachable, and eases you into the eccentric and odd elements that give Persona it's unique flavor.
Persona 4 is available for the PS2, and the updated rerelease, Persona 4: Golden, is available for PS Vita.
Persona 5 / Why is Persona 5 cool?
Now to actually talk about Persona 5, the main course here. And it's incredible.
Persona 5 is the most recent main series Persona game, released in September 2016 in Japan and April 2017 in the West, after numerous delays from it's supposed Winter 2014 release date. Despite Persona 3's 2006 release and Persona 4's 2008 release being very close together, it took 8 years after 4 for 5 to be released - mostly due to the transition to HD development. Taking their time proved to be well worth it though, because we ended up with one of the best, most passionately adored, and memorable games of 2017 - and probably of the console generation - likely beyond that, too, even. Even Sakurai himself is a massive fan of the game!
P5 has done a lot to update the series' visual presentation to the modern era, and you can really see the fruits of the labor of developing Catherine (PS3, 360, PS4, Vita) here, because the experience in creating HD models acquired from making Catherine couldn't be more clear - the models in Persona 5 are gorgeous.
In fact, the whole game is gorgeous. That Joker announcement trailer wasn't just for show - it's inspired by the Persona 5 intro. Everything, from the title screen, to the shop menus, to your equipment menus; from every component of the battle menu, elements of it's battle mechanics, and beyond - all of it is absolutely dripping with style. And not just any style, it's style reflecting the picaresque stories that inspired it, as well as it's key color - a striking crimson.
The use of strong crimson works well to establish that you will make yourself be seen. It's a color of confidence. We'll get to that soon. In Persona 5, you play as a transfer student that you choose the name of. This is Joker. Joker, though is a code name, which will make sense in a short while. His canon name is either Akira Kurusu or Ren Amamiya, depending on the adaption. You, Joker, were expelled from your original school due to trying to help a woman deal with a belligerent man who turns out to be a powerful politician. He gets you in a lot of legal trouble, and this leads to you having to move to Yongen-Jaya, near Tokyo, where you'll be attending Shujin Academy, and live in the (surprisingly comfy) attic of the LeBlanc cafe, owned by your new guardian, Sojiro.
You'll notice your phone has a mysterious application that cannot be deleted, and at night you appear in the Velvet Room. This series of events will allow you to access the Metaverse, an alternate version of the world where people will especially strong distorted thoughts and feelings alter the very landscape. In the Metaverse, the world is dictated by what people think and feel. For example, if someone happened to think a model gun was a real gun, in the Metaverse, the model gun would work exactly like a real gun would. The places resulting from that are referred to as Palaces, and are inhabited by Shadows, as well as a Shadow version of the one who's thoughts and feelings created the Palace. You'll end up here alongside a couple of classmates, and you'll find that a truly vile and manipulative teacher has transformed the Metaverse version of Shujin into a castle. An odd and enigmatic character will explain how the Metaverse and it's Palaces operate. They'll focus on something in particular - stealing hearts. By sending a calling card to provoke the owner of the Palace, a precious item will appear within the Palace's confines. By stealing that item, you can force someone to admit their crimes. Naturally, you'll be using this technique to take down the revolting teacher, while the school administration tries desperately to cover up the issue to save face. This operation is the birth of the Phantom Thieves, your party who seeks to use the ability to steal hearts to bring hope to downtrodden people, just like creating rivers in the desert.
That's where the use of crimson and picaresque inspiration comes into play, and what the central theming of Persona 5 revolves around. Persona 5 is about making sure your voice is heard. When the powerful are free to control people however they want, and apathy begins to set in as no one feels like they can do anything, the only choice you have is the wake up, get up, and get out there, because that's the only way life will change. So, you do just that. With your newfound power, you help out various people who have resigned themselves to live underneath someone else's heel, and give them the reminder that they need that it's worth trying to control your own life and push for change. There's a lot more to unpack in this department, but some of it dives into spoiler territory, so please trust me when I say it's remarkably well thought out, interesting, and powerful.
Each of your party members Personas are based of off famous rogues of history and myth, with your own original one being Arsene, based on Arsene Lupin. Almost every aspect of the games plays up your nature as the Phantom Thieves - the story dungeons of the previous games are now elaborately designed areas where heists occur, from castles to tombs to museums. The Social Links are now Confidants, and the bonuses they provide are not only to your Personas, but also directly help your abilities in the Metaverse, as they come to support your intentions as the Phantom Thieves. There's now a stealth system, and the advantageous stage on an enemy Shadow is now an ambush.
There's been several gameplay improvements as well - dungeon exploration is perfected, with the Palaces each having their own unique layouts and themes, as well as sporting some great art direction. You're fully free to run and explore the Palace with snappy terrain traversal, as well. In battle, the game is streamlined immensely by one simple change - the new battle UI. What's changed is that instead of scrolling through menus like a traditional JRPG, every button corresponds to an action. There are menus you can enter from there, but this one simple change really improves the game feel from great to sublime.
P5 also brings back demon negotiation from SMT and Persona 1 & 2. As stated far back in this post, the demons you acquire as Personas appear as Shadows in the Metaverse. Now, not only can you fuse Personas in the Velvet Room, but you can also persuade Shadows by targeting their weakness and holding them at gunpoint, known as a hold up. From there, you can pressure them into joining you, or giving you money/items. The Shadows are pretty weird though, so prepare to think outside the box when it comes to your conversations with them.
I've dotted some songs around in this section, but I do want to point out that the music, lovingly crafted by Shoji Meguro (composer of most of Atlus' largest games, including SMT 3 and Persona 3-5), is superb. It has some of the smoothest, some of the most invigorating, and honestly some of the best general music I've ever heard - the music in Persona 5 is a narration of the game to a degree that few other games compare to.
Naturally, like the previous games, Persona 5 blends it's art, themes, gameplay, and music extraordinarily well, but 5 might just be on a level above even them. Every element on it's own is incredible and well thought out - from it's art, it's themes of rebellion and change, it's wonderful gameplay systems, to it's legendary music. The cohesion and synthesis is at an unbelievable level. Here's just a few examples of how it's elements play off of each other:
  1. The art supports the gameplay by making the battles incredibly satisfying with wonderful animations. Targeting enemy weaknesses conveys a large weight. I linked a regular attack that didn't exploit a weakness as a frame of reference, critical hits and high-level skills get even better.
  2. The menus and UI take inspiration from comic books as well as grafitti, evoking underdog heroes and a rebellious nature, so the themes of the game are always present in some capacity - even when simply equipping a new weapon.
  3. The music sells the themes through it's lyrics and subject matter, creating some truly incredible moments. Especially in the later half of the game, the music will take you on it's own journey with how much it can command the mood of a scene, especially during heists and boss battles.
  4. The Palace exploration gameplay supports the themes, because you are not only like thieves in a narrative sense, you also explore Palaces like a thief, ambushing enemies with maneuvers they never saw coming.
  5. Often many elements will be supporting each other at one time. Once a calling card is sent, the tension rises to a fever pitch - you are executing your plans to topple corrupt individuals, the music is playing your signature theme as the Palace owner is getting increasingly desperate to stop you, the art is selling each of the Thieves' unwavering determination, and the whole Palace is on absolute maximum security, which is even reflected by the game's stealth mechanics setting the Palace to it's maximum alert level. These moments and many more are truly brilliant.
Not to discard core Persona elements, P5's Confidants are just as interesting and engaging as the Social Links of it's predecessors. There's a ton of characters to interact with, and the stories deal with topics ranging from parental issues to deep self-loathing to dealing with ostracization, with stories that can be about caring for loved ones with severe depression, or how to become a stronger person to support friends who have suffered. That's a very small sample, there's many more stories with their own topics, as well. There's a lot of really tender and important moments in these Social Links, and, just like in real life, there's also calming and fun moments of levity too. There's guaranteed to be multiple characters you'll be interested in, especially if you go out of your way to give them a chance and listen to their stories.
Persona 5 brings the series to the modern era in a spectacular fashion, and I think it's a game people really should enter with an open mind, because it might just become one of your favorite games ever.
Persona 5 is currently available for PS3 and PS4, but I highly doubt Atlus will keep it exclusive to those platforms now that there's a few million people with a Switch who are interested. Every prior Persona game has been remade, and Persona 3 actually had an updated rerelease fairly soon after the original. We'll likely see Persona 5 appear on Switch in the coming year or so, and maybe it'll even be updated!
Who is Joker and what's he like? Why is he cool?
So, Joker is the main character of Persona 5. He's your player character and the leader of the Phantom Thieves. In the real world, he normally tries to avoid drawing attention to himself, though when confronted he can get pretty sassy. He often has dialogue choices for messing with people. In the Metaverse he's in his element, and is very cocky. You can tell he enjoys every second of being a thief. He's got a great design and he's just generally really fucking cool. He also sounds amazing, given that he shares his voice actor with the Smash Bros. announcer, Xander Mobus. You can listen to all his voice lines right here, in all their glory. They're also very entertaining to listen to in a row like that.
In terms of moveset, Joker's has three weapons - a dagger, a gun, and most importantly by far, access to well over 100 Personas, all of which have their own unique forms and abilities. His Persona abilities are absolutely gargantuan, and this is very certainly going to be his main method of combat, no matter what game he's in. Even his main Persona, Arsene, will provide a wide array of abilities, with an emphasis on dark magic. Expect Joker to be fairly fast and have a wide array of tools at his disposal.
Significance of Joker in Smash
It's abundantly clear by now that I love Persona, and not only is Joker's inclusion beyond wonderful for bringing a very nice character from an incredible game to Smash, it's also going to bring so much more attention to this series, and I couldn't be more glad for it.
The reality that there's gonna be so many new faces experiencing this series is so heartwarming to me, because I look back at my time with Persona 5 back on it's initial release as some of the best time I've ever spent with a video game. I hope many more will get to feel the same.
Just to think, there's probably well over a million, probably well over a few million people eagerly awaiting the first DLC character of the fighter pass, and Nintendo and Atlus took this opportunity to introduce so many people to this absolutely lovely series. Persona used to be pretty niche before Persona 5, despite the series' constant praise along with it's fairly wide and intensely passionate adoration, so I'm glad it's finally and indisputably made a name for itself, and gets to be included in the ever growing family of Smash Brothers, among the greatest names gaming has ever seen.
To me, I think it's earned it. Lookin' cool, Joker.
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🚨 Overnight Freedom Review 🚨 [PLUS BONUSES]

What Is Overnight Freedom? This program teaches students how to build and scale a 6 to 7 figure affiliate marketing business from Paid Traffic. The 4 main methods in Overnight Freedom are: 1. Earning high percentage commissions on low ticket digital products 2. Earning recurring commissions from monthly recurring products. 3. Earning high CPA commissions on digital and physical products 4. Earning high commissions from high ticket offers Overnight Freedom has TWO powerful and scalable PAID traffic sources are taught to students in detail: Facebook Ads and YouTube Ads. Higher Commissions – We’ve negotiated deals with vendors to offer higher commissions than the standard rates, in some cases 90%+ commissions. PLUS we have some offers that they will be able to earn a cut on the ‘backend’ sequence that goes out to members also. This is unseen anywhere else, in some of these offers that gives them the ability to earn 50% on a $500-$2500 product! Overnight Freedom has cutting-edge software that practically builds a high converting, Facebook & YouTube compliant site for them! This is important because the days of scaling paid ads direct to an affiliate offer are over, yet this gives them the ability to create their own high converting affiliate site SUPER easy. And allows them the freedom to make changes easily. Thanks for watching my Overnight Freedom Review make sure you grab my bonuses here https://frankiepellegrino.site/overni...
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🚨 Overnight Freedom Review 🚨 [PLUS BONUSES]

What Is Overnight Freedom? This program teaches students how to build and scale a 6 to 7 figure affiliate marketing business from Paid Traffic. The 4 main methods in Overnight Freedom are: 1. Earning high percentage commissions on low ticket digital products 2. Earning recurring commissions from monthly recurring products. 3. Earning high CPA commissions on digital and physical products 4. Earning high commissions from high ticket offers Overnight Freedom has TWO powerful and scalable PAID traffic sources are taught to students in detail: Facebook Ads and YouTube Ads. Higher Commissions – We’ve negotiated deals with vendors to offer higher commissions than the standard rates, in some cases 90%+ commissions. PLUS we have some offers that they will be able to earn a cut on the ‘backend’ sequence that goes out to members also. This is unseen anywhere else, in some of these offers that gives them the ability to earn 50% on a $500-$2500 product! Overnight Freedom has cutting-edge software that practically builds a high converting, Facebook & YouTube compliant site for them! This is important because the days of scaling paid ads direct to an affiliate offer are over, yet this gives them the ability to create their own high converting affiliate site SUPER easy. And allows them the freedom to make changes easily. Thanks for watching my Overnight Freedom Review make sure you grab my bonuses here https://frankiepellegrino.site/overni...
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Interested in building the Klaytn ecosystem? Join Klaytn Build Program.

Interested in building the Klaytn ecosystem? Join Klaytn Build Program.

https://preview.redd.it/x5g73thxq9631.png?width=1100&format=png&auto=webp&s=b48be6cf4d8e3e51306840151cebe74f1585f32f

Klaytn Build Program — The 1st Seed Announcement

We previously released the private testnet, Aspen and the public testnet, Baobab. As we’d say, we planted Aspen and Baobab, and we are planning to plant more seeds within our ecosystem to build a big forest. To begin, we are kicking off ‘Klaytn Build Program’ to invite developers to create developer tools to enhance the Klaytn platform usability. This program enables developers to dive into the Klaytn ecosystem to develop, improve, and stabilize the Klaytn platform together.
For the ‘1st Seed,’ we would like to focus on language translation and creating tutorials or BApp (Blockchain Application) demos. The contributors will be rewarded with Klaytn’s token, KLAY, based on the level of contribution at each task. We plan to run this program on a regular basis, and the next announcement for the ‘2nd Seed’ will be made right here on our Medium page, so make sure to stay tuned.

The 1st Seed — Klaytn Build Program 2019

Task 1: Language Translation

The Klaytn Docs and the online Klaytn lectures are available in English language only as of now, so we would like to invite developers to translate them into other foreign languages. By providing Klaytn materials in multiple languages, we would like to invite all developers worldwide to join our platform without any language barriers. We believe that the participating developers themselves would be the most talented translators. The more languages become available, the more different ideas shared on Klaytn. Be the first contributor from your country.
Task 1–1: Klaytn Online Lecture Subtitle Translation
Klaytn Online Lecture Subtitles: You can check out the Klaytn lectures on YouTube or Inflearn.
Languages: Vietnamese, Thai, Japanese, Chinese, Korean *Should you prefer to work with any other languages, feel free to let us know by writing to us at [[email protected]].
Contribution Steps: 1. Go to GitHub (Task 1–2 Klaytn Online Lecture Subtitle Translation). Choose the language and the chapter you would like to contribute to. 2. Start translating the English version into the desired language. 3. Feel free to provide feedback and suggest other amendments if needed. We encourage you to collaborate amongst yourselves. 4. Your pull requests will be reviewed and merged by our team.
Range of Bounties: 4,000 KLAY* *This is based on the full translation of 1 language. You will be rewarded based on several criteria including the portion of your contribution, being the first contributor, and contributing as the second revision translator, etc.
Note: 1. Start: 2019.06.05 Deadline: 2019.07.26 2. We may consider giving the commit approval permission to an active user in the long term. 3. Once all the translations are finished, the final results will be applied to the subtitles of Klaytn YouTube videos.
Task 1–2: Klaytn Docs Translation
Details for this task will be announced after the mainnet launch.

Task 2: Klaytn Tutorial and BApp Demo

It takes a certain amount of time for everyone to learn something new, but if you are provided with useful educational materials, you can speed things up! In order for our developers to easily understand and use Klaytn, we are inviting you to make Klaytn tutorials and BApp demos. The contents may include what to set up before using the Klaytn platform, how to develop BApps on Klaytn, and whatever else you think it’s necessary or helpful for the Klaytn users. There is no specific requirement as to what you may or may not do, so explore as much as you can.
Contribution Steps: 1. There are two options to choose from. You may also do both options: - Option A: Create tutorials that outline Klaytn or teach other developers how to use Klaytn. - Option B: Create demo contents that describe the BApp development process. You can refer to the tutorial contents on our Klaytn Docs (https://docs.klaytn.com/tutorials).
  1. Please send your final projects in formats of either Google Docs or md file to [[email protected]].
  2. After submitting the final results via e-mail, please let our team know of your submission on Slack channel (channel ‘result_share’) so that we can confirm.
Range of Bounties: 500 – 25,000 KLAY
Note: 1. Start: 2019.06.05 Deadline: 2019.07.26 2. After Klaytn Team’s review, the selected contents will be exposed to the official Klaytn Docs.

How to Communicate with the Klaytn Team

Every contributor is encouraged to join Slack for further communication. By using the Slack, you will receive updates from Klaytn Team, ask questions regarding your task, and communicate with other developers. The detailed rules are provided accordingly if needed. We will also update on the next bounty program on the Slack.

How the Amount of Bounty is Decided

Our internal technical writer and developers will be examining the submitted results. After the thorough review, the reward will be provided considering the complexity, completeness, and the level of difficulty. For the language translation tasks, the following criteria will be considered: the portion of your contribution, being the first contribution, and contributing as the second revision translator, etc.

How to Claim Your Bounty

Klaytn Team will be reviewing all submissions and Github after the deadline. We will then select the contributors for each task, and reward them accordingly by sending KLAY via e-mails. The notice for reward distribution will be announced at the end of 2019.
*We will reward more for those who contributed more.

Acknowledgment

For Task 1, your pull requests of the translation will be applied to our GitHub, and you will be acknowledged as a contributor. For Task 2, the selected contents will be uploaded on the official Klaytn Docs with your name.

Legal Statement

KLAYTN BUILD PROGRAM IS NOT BEING OFFERED AND IS NOT AVAILABLE IN THE UNITED STATES, CHINA OR THEIR AFFILIATED TERRITORIES. IF YOU ARE
(I) U.S. PERSON (AS DEFINED IN RULE 902(K)(1) OF REGULATION S UNDER THE U.S. SECURITIES ACT OF 1934, AS AMENDED), OR (II) RESIDENT, LOCATED, DOMICILED, INCORPORATED OR ESTABLISHED, OR CONDUCTS BUSINESS IN THE PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA (EXCLUDING THE SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGIONS OF HONG KONG AND MACAU, AND THE TERRITORY OF TAIWAN) (“PRC”) (INCLUDING, FOR THE AVOIDANCE OF DOUBT, A PERSON OF DUAL OR MULTIPLE NATIONALITIES WHO HOLDS A PRC PASSPORT), YOU ARE NOT ELIGIBLE TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS PROGRAM AND WILL NOT RECEIVE ANY REWARDS. KLAYTN WILL STRICTLY ENFORCE THIS RULE VIA OUR KYC PROCEDURES.
The notice for the receiving date will be announced at the end of 2019. In order to claim or receive any of the rewards after the notice, you will be required to provide certain identifying documentation and information. Failure to provide such information or demonstrate compliance with the restrictions herein may result in forfeiture of all rewards, prohibition from participating in future Klaytn programs, and other sanctions.
Your submission of your program (the “Program”) to the Klaytn Build Program will constitute your representation, confirmation, and authorization to Klaytn that the Program may be released under an open source license. LGPL (Lesser General Public License) will be applied to the Program. You are not entitled to claim any infringement of proprietary rights for the Program, such as copyright infringement or license breach, so long as Klaytn or any third party complies with the open source license.
You hereby guarantee and acknowledge that the Program does not infringe any copyright, license, patent, trademark, trade secret or other proprietary rights of any third party. You will be liable for any damages, including but not limited to damages due to any infringement of a third party’s proprietary rights, incurred in connection with the Program.
More detailed announcements regarding the Klaytn Build Program will be made on Medium and Slack.
Join Klaytn’s community on Facebook, Reddit, and Twitter for more.

Cheers, Team Klaytn

[Klaytn official community] Homepage: http://www.klaytn.com Twitter: http://twitter.com/klaytn_official

[About Klaytn] Klaytn is a service-centric blockchain platform providing intuitive development environment and friendly end-user experience. It is built upon solid reliability and significant stability with substantial service development for mass adoption. The platform allows real world applications of large scale to be produced right away so that our end-users can make full use of services without much expertise in blockchain or cryptocurrency. Klaytn seeks to convey the value and potential of blockchain technology to people.
submitted by klaytn_official to klaytn [link] [comments]

bprs07 Case Study Month #9

Hello again /juststart -- welcome to month 9 of my case study.
My posts are primarily stats-driven updates of my first foray into affiliate marketing. I'll also touch on anything notable I've done since my last update, but please don't hesitate to comment with questions.

Past Updates

Supporting Graphics

Overview

My affiliate site made $3,632 in November. That doesn't include another $100 earned from Amazon Canada and UK, but for ease of analysis I won't be including those figures in my updates.
I published 1 article since my Month 8 update but have seen my revenue skyrocket. A lot of that is definitely the holiday season boost, as I earned $1,066 over the 4 days from Black Friday through Cyber Monday. Frankly, I'm pretty shocked I'm pulling in this much revenue with only 82 posts (holiday boost or not).
The biggest change I made since last month was getting rid of my horribly performing Media.net ads and replacing them with Amazon Native Shopping Ads. It's not the best for diversifying my source of income, but I wouldn't really call sidebar ads an important form of revenue diversification. There just isn't enough money there.
That said, my Native Shopping Ads have performed decently. I've earned $1.03 per thousand impressions with 500 clicks in the 21 days in November since I rolled it out on November 10. See their performance here. I think there's a lot of room for improvement in these ads if I actually try to optimize them, but I'm curious what other people have experienced when using Native Shopping Ads.
Aside from limited content creation, optimizing some existing content, working on internal links, and monitoring my big money posts in the SERPs, I haven't done too much. Just been watching the money roll in.

Traffic Stats

Month Organic Referral Social Direct Total
Month 1 (Mar) 10 2 1 n/a 13
Month 2 (Apr) 121 37 44 n/a 202
Month 3 (May) 436 76 57 99 668
Month 4 (Jun) 2,646 124 211 194 3,175
Month 5 (Jul) 6,793 155 531 421 7,900
Month 6 (Aug) 11,456 169 441 590 12,656
Month 7 (Sep) 19,113 209 368 1,218 20,908
Month 8 (Oct) 27,228 242 370 1,583 29,423
Month 9 (Nov) 49,744 405 415 2,929 53,493
Total 117,547 1,419 2,438 7,034 128,438
  • Month 1 includes last few days of February; case study began 2/24/17
  • Direct traffic in Months 1 and 2 listed as "n/a" because it was too high and almost exclusively my unfiltered visits

Earnings Stats

Month Clicks Ord Items Ship Items Conv Revenue Earnings Rev/Ship Clicks/Sess Earn/Sess
Month 1 (Mar) n/a 1 1 n/a $23 $1 $22.97 n/a $0.079
Month 2 (Apr) 42 3 2 7.14% $246 $11 $123.33 20.8% $0.055
Month 3 (May) 113 15 16 13.27% $490 $27 $30.61 25.9% $0.062
Month 4 (Jun) 408 35 31 8.58% $871 $41 $28.09 15.4% $0.016
Month 5 (Jul) 1,229 188 160 15.30% $6,780 $335 $42.37 15.6% $0.043
Month 6 (Aug) 2,945 387 382 13.14% $13,703 $643 $35.87 23.3% $0.051
Month 7 (Sep) 5,419 757 720 13.97% $22,365 $1,062 $31.06 28.4% $0.056
Month 8 (Oct) 7,855 964 916 12.27% $32,008 $1,532 $34.94 28.8% $0.053
Month 9 (Nov) 17,206 2,176 1,985 12.65% $73,477 $3,618 $37.02 32.2% $0.068
Total 35,265 4,525 4,213 12.83% $150,207 $7,285 $35.65 27.5% $0.057
  • Month 1 includes last few days of February; case study began 2/24/17
  • Month 1 clicks are almost exclusively my clicks to test links, so I'm omitting them
  • Clicks/Sess and Earn/Sess refers to Amazon clicks and earnings per session from the traffic table
  • Total row includes a few days at the end of February, which is not explicitly shown in the table above

Money Stuff

Expenses
  • ConvertKit (emails): $29.00
  • GeniusLinks (link tracking): $9.00
  • Case Study Total: $766.27
Revenue
Period Affiliate Sales Bounties Total
Month 9 (Nov) $3,618.49 $14.00 $3,632.49
Total $7,284.64 $37.00 $7,321.64
Last month I had a section for Ads, but I've eliminated that because I've switched to Amazon Native Shopping Ads, and all revenue from that falls into the Affiliate Sales or Bounties categories.
Net Income
Period Income Expenses Net Income
Month 9 (Nov) $3,632.49 $38.00 $3,594.49
Total $7,410.78 $766.27 $6,644.51

Goals for Month 10

I've enjoyed the holiday boost, but it's definitely shortlived. Time to accelerate into 2018 with more content!
submitted by bprs07 to juststart [link] [comments]

Subreddit Stats: Games top posts from 2013-08-28 to 2019-05-09 22:12 PDT

Period: 2080.80 days
Submissions Comments
Total 998 429173
Rate (per day) 0.48 206.19
Unique Redditors 693 88190
Combined Score 7319451 17280614

Top Submitters' Top Submissions

  1. 185581 points, 24 submissions: Turbostrider27
    1. Halo Master Chief Collection coming to PC (Steam) (21010 points, 2314 comments)
    2. Fallout 76 – Official Teaser Trailer (15056 points, 2830 comments)
    3. Borderlands 3 Official Developer Trailer (14002 points, 2187 comments)
    4. Steam Summer Sale begins in 24 hours (10813 points, 1467 comments)
    5. Borderlands 3 arrives on Xbox One, PS4, and PC on September 13, 2019 (9102 points, 3139 comments)
    6. Red Dead Redemption 2 will have around 200 species of animals (8209 points, 1056 comments)
    7. CD Projekt files trademark application for Cyberpunk 2077 Just In Time For E3 (7974 points, 634 comments)
    8. There will soon be more PC gamers in China than the total population of the United States (7779 points, 745 comments)
    9. Bayonetta is now on Steam (7669 points, 931 comments)
    10. Apex Legends hit 50 Million players worldwide (7043 points, 1160 comments)
  2. 102385 points, 12 submissions: ninjyte
    1. Titanfall 2 will not have a season pass, all post-launch maps and content will be free (20942 points, 1730 comments)
    2. To play online co-op in A Way Out, only one person needs to own the game (12252 points, 581 comments)
    3. Activision-Blizzard Begins Massive Layoffs (10988 points, 3086 comments)
    4. Cyberpunk 2O77 - Review Thread (8866 points, 600 comments)
    5. Battle Royale is coming to Battlefield V (7235 points, 1915 comments)
    6. Sony announces PlayStation Classic - includes 20 games (Final Fantasy VII, Wild Arms, Tekken 3, etc.) ; $99.99, releases December 3rd (7166 points, 2041 comments)
    7. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Review Thread (6537 points, 3084 comments)
    8. Super Mario Odyssey - Review Thread (6523 points, 3465 comments)
    9. Former Gearbox Lawyer Accuses CEO Randy Pitchford Of Taking Secret $12 Million Bonus In Lawsuit Gearbox Calls 'Absurd' (6048 points, 636 comments)
    10. 'Enter the Gungeon' dev releases update where the player can pet dogs after novelty twitter account previously shared that it wasn't possible to do so (5842 points, 390 comments)
  3. 87786 points, 12 submissions: Forestl
    1. Spider-Man switches between two vocal takes depending on whether or not he's exerting himself (11662 points, 1084 comments)
    2. Star Wars Battlefront II - Reducing the amount of credits needed to unlock the top heroes by 75% (10491 points, 2376 comments)
    3. In Uncharted Drake doesn’t take bullet damage. The red UI that shows ‘hits’ is to represent his ‘luck’ running out. (10377 points, 908 comments)
    4. Sources: leaked Harry Potter game is real, not developed by Rocksteady (10255 points, 1106 comments)
    5. Backwards Compatibility Announced for Xbox One (7835 points, 2643 comments)
    6. Mega Man 11, coming to Switch, PS4, Xbox One, and PC in Late 2018 (6198 points, 692 comments)
    7. Dishonored 2 -- Official E3 2015 Announce Trailer (6102 points, 1139 comments)
    8. PlayStation VR Will be $399 and launch in October (5488 points, 1816 comments)
    9. Fallout 4 has shipped 12 million copies and made $750 million (5259 points, 2134 comments)
    10. This is Just Cause 3 (4712 points, 842 comments)
  4. 81857 points, 5 submissions: calibrono
    1. John @Totalbiscuit Bain July 8, 1984 - May 24, 2018 (43720 points, 2101 comments)
    2. John “TotalBiscuit” Bain to be inducted into Esports Hall of Fame at ESL One Hamburg 2018 as first non-player (17687 points, 698 comments)
    3. 2/3 of Destiny 2’s Warmind Strikes are reused campaign levels, the third is exclusive to PlayStation (10769 points, 1861 comments)
    4. Overwatch victory pose cut after fan complains that it's over-sexualized (4967 points, 3059 comments)
    5. I will now talk about Lootboxes and Gambling for just over 40 minutes [Totalbiscuit] (4714 points, 1683 comments)
  5. 63575 points, 8 submissions: Frocharocha
    1. Ark dev's pirate MMO Atlas goes offline after cheaters spawn in WW2 tanks, aeroplanes • Eurogamer.net (11469 points, 769 comments)
    2. Gabe Newell gives credit for Halo coming to Steam to Phil Spencer and team (9696 points, 472 comments)
    3. Atlas finally launches, disappoints 77% of the players (9625 points, 1155 comments)
    4. G2A under fire for charging users for not logging in (9232 points, 853 comments)
    5. Resident Evil 2 is Capcom’s second-best Steam launch ever (7348 points, 996 comments)
    6. Chrono Trigger voted greatest game of this era by Japanese fans (5951 points, 1133 comments)
    7. Death Stranding May Have Reached Polishing Phase; Kojima Thought Everything Was Lost When Leaving Konami (5411 points, 618 comments)
    8. Gamesradar: Fallout 76 review 2.5★/5★ (4843 points, 1136 comments)
  6. 62237 points, 7 submissions: IceBlast24
    1. Red Dead Redemption 2 is Coming October 26th 2018 - Rockstar Games (13424 points, 1411 comments)
    2. 10 million players have played Apex Legends and it has surpassed 1 million concurrent players (12032 points, 1750 comments)
    3. Within 10 months, Nintendo Switch has become the fastest-selling video game system of all time in the US (8822 points, 1692 comments)
    4. Nintendo Switch became the best-selling Nintendo console in US history for the five-day period between Thanksgiving and Cyber-Monday, surpassing Wii sales (+117% compared to 2017) (8270 points, 1230 comments)
    5. 5 million copies of Monster Hunter: World has been shipped in three days since launch (package & digital) (7525 points, 1545 comments)
    6. Nintendo Switch has surpassed 10 million sales worldwide (7017 points, 1138 comments)
    7. In less than 12 hours, Fortnite became the No. 1 iPhone app (not just game) in 13 countries (5147 points, 692 comments)
  7. 58044 points, 7 submissions: alexeymakarov
    1. Nintendo of America’s Reggie Fils-Aime to Retire: Doug Bowser Named New President (14877 points, 993 comments)
    2. Marvel's 'Spider-Man' PS4 sells record 3.3 million copies in opening (8890 points, 1103 comments)
    3. Borderlands Teaser - Mask of Mayhem (8759 points, 1376 comments)
    4. Apex Legends broke a million unique players in under 8 hours (7831 points, 1691 comments)
    5. Development update on Metroid Prime 4 for Nintendo Switch (7326 points, 1419 comments)
    6. Ubisoft: No New Assassin's Creed Coming In 2019 (5420 points, 835 comments)
    7. 20th Century Fox trademarks Alien: Blackout for use with video games (4941 points, 378 comments)
  8. 56344 points, 9 submissions: lupianwolf
    1. "It's disturbing that Wolfenstein can be considered a controversial political statement" (11793 points, 4478 comments)
    2. PlayStation's Jim Ryan defends controversial The Last of Us Part 2 trailer: "A game made by adults, to be played by adults" (7709 points, 2459 comments)
    3. Assassin's Creed Origins Metacritic Flooded With Fake Positive User Reviews (6977 points, 1252 comments)
    4. Horizon Zero Dawn beats Zelda to No.1 in the UK (5254 points, 1459 comments)
    5. Body of assassinated Russian diplomat used in Telltale's Batman game. (5192 points, 623 comments)
    6. How Wolfenstein II Censored Hitler In Germany (5041 points, 1069 comments)
    7. Hajime Tabata would like to release Final Fantasy XV on PC (4857 points, 665 comments)
    8. Horizon Zero Dawn Patch 1.30 Adds New Game+, Face Paint Options, Ultra Hard Difficulty, More (4775 points, 751 comments)
    9. Consoles held Fallout: New Vegas back, say Obsidian (4746 points, 1330 comments)
  9. 54874 points, 8 submissions: ZyreHD
    1. Sea of Thieves is a disguised early access (9755 points, 2159 comments)
    2. Forza 7 feels like a free-to-play game you paid $60 to play (9154 points, 2113 comments)
    3. The Wolf Among Us 2 Coming in 2019 (7134 points, 426 comments)
    4. STAR WARS BATTLEFRONT II IS STILL PAY TO WIN - XfactorGaming (6424 points, 2132 comments)
    5. Metro 2035 - Coming 2017 (6094 points, 363 comments)
    6. YouTube rolls out 60fps support (6079 points, 1480 comments)
    7. Fallout 4 website is live. (5480 points, 1262 comments)
    8. Sony Online Entertainment becomes Daybreak Game Company. Not affiliated with Sony anymore. (4754 points, 701 comments)
  10. 50846 points, 8 submissions: XtMcRe
    1. Despite Square Enix’s promises and after almost six months, NieR: Automata has not received any patch on the PC (9030 points, 731 comments)
    2. Ubisoft has managed to protect Assassin's Creed Origins from pirates for an entire month (8471 points, 2100 comments)
    3. IO Interactive has removed Denuvo from HITMAN (6566 points, 599 comments)
    4. Fans remake Silent Hills P.T. for the PC, and you can download the prototype versions (5887 points, 497 comments)
    5. Resident Evil 7 has already recouped its development cost (5778 points, 679 comments)
    6. Sonic Mania's Denuvo has been cracked in just eight days since launch (5451 points, 1343 comments)
    7. This mod for Star Wars Battlefront 2 2005 adds 25 new maps and 5 new game modes (4940 points, 161 comments)
    8. Valve received almost 300K refund requests during the first day of its Steam Summer Sale (4723 points, 563 comments)

Top Commenters

  1. datlinus (48842 points, 123 comments)
  2. Nzash (25657 points, 113 comments)
  3. Skeletor1991 (24343 points, 28 comments)
  4. Databreaks (23183 points, 451 comments)
  5. falconbox (21320 points, 267 comments)
  6. LG03 (20674 points, 162 comments)
  7. Mitosis (20128 points, 99 comments)
  8. Magnon (19506 points, 77 comments)
  9. rather_be_a_hobbit (17213 points, 68 comments)
  10. Dusty8 (16658 points, 56 comments)

Top Submissions

  1. John @Totalbiscuit Bain July 8, 1984 - May 24, 2018 by calibrono (43720 points, 2101 comments)
  2. Belgium says loot boxes are gambling, wants them banned in Europe by DaftGorilla (24927 points, 2498 comments)
  3. The ONLY way a large company such as EA will listen to your criticism is by voting with your wallet. Profit is the only thing the company and its shareholders truly care about in the end. If you want to make your voice heard, cancel your preorder and don't buy the game, even when it goes on sale. by Myclane (23785 points, 2069 comments)
  4. Bungie Splits With Activision by jmxd (21743 points, 2424 comments)
  5. Halo Master Chief Collection coming to PC (Steam) by Turbostrider27 (21010 points, 2314 comments)
  6. Titanfall 2 will not have a season pass, all post-launch maps and content will be free by ninjyte (20942 points, 1730 comments)
  7. Totalbiscuit hospitalized, his cancer is spreading, and chemotherapy is no longer working. by Two-Tone- (19618 points, 1731 comments)
  8. [E3 2018] Cyberpunk 2077 by nalixor (19130 points, 2860 comments)
  9. EA fired Plants VS Zombies creator for objecting to Pay2Win by herecomesthenightman (18373 points, 1030 comments)
  10. Cyberpunk 2077 Gameplay Reveal From CD PROJEKT Red by MogwaiInjustice (18330 points, 3518 comments)

Top Comments

  1. 9926 points: Subie_Babie's comment in Bethesda offering 500 atoms ($5 ingame store credit) to owners of the Fallout 76 Power Armor Edition
  2. 9262 points: flamingos_world_tour's comment in EA handling of the Jedi Fallen Order reveal was a big fail and they had a great occasion
  3. 7631 points: OkidoShigeru's comment in Sony faces growing Fortnite backlash at E3
  4. 7553 points: Microchaton's comment in Epic Games, the creator of Fortnite, banked a $3 billion profit in 2018
  5. 7175 points: JB209's comment in Star Wars Battlefront II - Reducing the amount of credits needed to unlock the top heroes by 75%
  6. 7138 points: zrkillerbush's comment in Blizzard Says It Wasn't Expecting Fans To Be This Angry About Diablo Immortal
  7. 7082 points: Carnacolaya's comment in Nintendo confirms that the NES or SNES game you get per month with the new paid online service will only be available for that month, after which you have to buy the game to continue playing it.
  8. 6982 points: VonDukes's comment in ‘Minecraft’ Creator Excluded From Anniversary Due to ‘Comments and Opinions’
  9. 6956 points: Valvador's comment in Activision’s ‘Destiny 2’ is ‘struggling’ as gamers are unhappy over microtransactions
  10. 6860 points: ikkir's comment in EA Sports UFC 3 has the Single Most Egregious Microtransaction Model in Recent Memory
Generated with BBoe's Subreddit Stats
submitted by subreddit_stats to subreddit_stats [link] [comments]

132+ Teams in 132+ Days: Vanderbilt Commodores

Vanderbilt University (VU) Southeastern Conference, Eastern Division
Year Founded: 1873 Location: Nashville, Tennessee Total Attendance: 6,796 undergraduates, 5,949 graduate students
Nickname: The Commodores
Vanderbilt was named after shipping and railroad tycoon Cornelius Vanderbilt, known as the Hustler and the Commodore due to his business dealings. He donated $1M to help found a school with the goal of helping bridge the gap between the North and the South after the Civil War, and in return it was named after him. Our sports teams are known as Commodores and our school paper is The Hustler. (No, not that Hustler. Get your mind out of the gutter.) Fun fact: Cornelius never visited the school.
Live Mascot: Mr. C. Mr. C (as in Commodore, for the Vols in the room) is a representation of Cornelius. Yes, we know he looks creepy. Don't mess with Mr. C, kids.
Unofficial Mascot: George the Basset Hound. George was originally just a player's pet, but quickly won over Vandy fans: "George the basset hound, owned by Vandy halfback Toby Wilt whose fine run set up the only touchdown, inspired the Commodores before the opening kickoff. When Ebony Masterpiece, the Tennessee walking horse which has become the university's mascot, pranced up and down the sidelines, George darted across the field and appeared to challenge him in animal jargon." George chased the horse from the field and Vanderbilt won the 1964 game against UT 7-0. After his death in 1966, George would prove to be irreplaceable.
Cheerleaders: Cheerleaders Here are some more pictures. We also have a dance line.
Band: Vanderbilt’s marching band, The Spirit of Gold, is a roughly 200 member organization that performs pregame and halftime routines at all home football games, in addition to playing in the stands. It is one of the largest student organizations on campus. The band is unique in that it is made up of Vanderbilt students from a variety of majors, as well as students from other Nashville colleges and universities, including Belmont, Lipscomb, Trevecca Nazarene, and Volunteer State. This allows students from those schools the opportunity to participate in a collegiate marching band, while also helping to supplement the overall size of the ensemble. The Spirit of Gold is home to one of the largest chapters (Eta Phi) of the coed national band service sorority, Tau Beta Sigma. On gamedays, the Spirit of Gold will parade through campus, as well as greet the players as they enter the stadium through Star Walk. In recent years, the band has had a tendency to get a little rowdy, causing one reporter to equate the group to a drunken circus troupe.
The band also plays at home basketball games, but that’s another subreddit.
Fight Song: Francis Craig, class of 1924, was a successful composer and band leader. The musical director at WSM (famous for the Grand Ole Opry), he wrote "Dynamite" in 1922 while still an undergrad, and it would become our fight song.
Stadium: Vanderbilt Stadium at Dudley Field
Stadium Location: Natchez Trace at Jess Neely Drive
With a capacity just under 40,000, Vanderbilt Stadium is 15,000 seats smaller than the next smallest SEC venue (Davis Wade). Undergraduates receive free admission (with student ID) to the student section, first-come-first-serve, until capacity is reached. Visiting SEC teams have a history of outnumbering Commodore faithful, although this may begin to change as the team improves. The school has also begun a series of stadium improvements, adding new lights, a new jumbotron, artificial turf, and raised berm seating in the open end of the horseshoe. The stadium (nestled alongside the baseball field and basketball arena) is within a 5-15 minute walk of all dorms, which results in a different approach to tailgating [discussed below].
First Season: 1890
All-time Record: 573-578-50 Conference Champions (14):SIAA: 1897, 1901, 1903-1907, 1910-1912, 1915, 1921; Southern Conference: 1922-1923 Number of Bowl Games: 6 total: 3-2-1 National Titles (0): Zero claimed, despite 11 perfect seasons.
2012 Season
Record: 9-4 Coach:James Franklin Key Players: Jordan Rodgers, SR, QB; Zac Stacy, SR, RB; Jordan Matthews, JR, WR; Trey Wilson, SR, DB; Rob Lohr, SR, DT; Chase Garnham, JR, LB; Carey Spear, JR, K; Richard Kent, SR, P
Rodgers, Stacy, and Matthews combined to lead one of the most explosive offenses in recent school history, while Wilson, Lohr, and Garnham led a defense that ranked 6th in the country for passing efficiency and 15th for scoring defense. Vandy also developed one of the statistically best special teams, with Spear perfect inside 40 yards and Kent routinely pinning opponents deep in their own territory.
Biggest Plays:
Rodgers to Boyd to take the lead over Ole Miss.
Jordan Matthews takes a sweep to the house against UT.
DE Walker May hits Mizzou QB three straight times to help ice the game.
5'10", 185 lb kicker teaches Cordarelle Patterson to FEAR THE SPEAR.
Vanderbilt reVealed: 2012 marked the first "behind the scenes" videos of the gameday process, from pre- to post-game. The series covers Vandy wins, starting with Mizzou.
Missouri
Auburn
UMass
Kentucky
Ole Miss
Tennessee
Wake Forest
NC State
2013 Season
Roster
Senior WR Jordan Matthews - Matthews is the core of the team both on and off the field. A member of Kappa Alpha Psi (along with fellow WR Joshua Grady), his work ethic and leadership will likely earn him captain status in the upcoming season. Matthews rose from a two-star recruit to a top SEC playmaker with 94 receptions for 1323 yards and 8 touchdowns last season. He and his tandem, Chris Boyd, are both on the Biletnikoff Award watch list. Coaches have nicknamed them the Biletnikoff twins (the make a great team) and the whole receiving corps is referred to as the "Flyboyz". We are excited that Matthews chose to return for his senior season because he was predicted to be a third round draft pick last year. Here is a video of him being fast as hell and then making a neat one-handed catch. and "jumping" a TE's route against Wake (Matthews was the target).
Senior DB Andre Hal - Hal enters the season with high expectations, being named to the Thorpe, Bednarik, and Nagurski award watch lists. Last year he was second among SEC DBs with 16 passes defended, including three against drafted quarterback Mike Glennon in the Music City Bowl. He had two interceptions in the Tennessee game. He is from Port Allen, LA, and his dialect is fun to listen to.
Senior OT Wesley Johnson - Johnson is on both the Rotary Lombardi and Outland trophy watch lists. He is both versatile and seasoned, having played every OL position over the course of 38 consecutive starts. He has never been called for holding in his career and he did not give up a sack in the 2012 season. Offensive Line Coach Herb Hand is outspoken about Johnson's importance to the team. Johnson has spent most of his time at LT, making him the lineman to watch in the early season matchup with .
Senior DE Walker May - a co-captain in 2012, May tallied 10.5 TFL and 3 sacks. An SEC Defensive Player of the Week, May will be needed to bring game experience to a line trying to replace Johnell Thomas and now-KC Chief Rob Lohr.
Schedule
The Greats
Greatest Games:
Michigan 0, Vanderbilt 0: Fielding Yost brought his 1922 Michigan team to Nashville to play Vanderbilt, coached by his former player, assistant coach, and brother-in-law Dan McGugin. The game marked the dedication of Dudley Field, which was the first stadium in the South to be used solely for college football. It was a defensive struggle, and would turn out to be the only game neither team won that season - Michigan would finish 6-0-1, while Vanderbilt posted an 8-0-1 record. Vanderbilt would go on to be considered the best team in the South and one of the best in the country, allowing only 1.8 ppg.
Vanderbilt defeats #8 Florida in 1974.
Vanderbilt loses to #13 Florida in 2005. A great comeback stifled by a stupid penalty.
Vanderbilt defeats Tennessee in Neyland Stadium, 2005. Game winning TD and game sealing INT Jay Cutler went 27-39 for 315 yards and 3 TDs while Earl Bennett hauled in 14 catches for 167 yards and a TD, which was enough to overcome a 223 yard performance by UT's Arian Foster. First Vanderbilt victory over Tennessee since 1982.
Greatest Plays: There aren't a lot available on youtube, but:
Warren Norman vs. Arkansas, 51 yards: the best example of how a running back at Vanderbilt was able to break Herschel Walker's freshman all-purpose yardage SEC record in 2009. 2009 was Norman's only full season, suffering knee injuries afterward and choosing to end his career earlier this year over health concerns.
Chris Boyd makes Sportscenter for the first time: up 7-6 over rival Tennessee just before halftime, Boyd hauled this pass in right in front of the Vandy student section. One of two Vanderbilt plays to make the Sportscenter top plays for the weekend.
Bill Marinangel tucks it and runs for his life against the Crimson Tide
The generous Zac Stacy takes the entire Kentucky defense with him on a trip to the end zone.
Greatest Players: 5 CFB Hall of Fame players, 36 All-Americans
Historically: Bill Spears, Carl Hinkle, Bill Wade, John J. Tigert (of special importance to UF fans and a key founding father of the SEC and modern CFB)
Modern era: Jay Cutler, Earl Bennett, Casey Hayward, Jamie Winborn, Zac Stacy.
Greatest Coaches: 4 CFB Hall of Fame coaches (Jess Neely, a former player and alumnus, was also inducted into the HoF as a coach) - 15% of our head coaches
Dan McGugin: 1904-1917, 1919-1934; 197-55-19; 1 losing season, 4 undefeated seasons. While McGugin was a member of Yost's Point-A-Minute teams at Michigan, he made his name as a defensive coach. During his first season at Vanderbilt, his team beat opponents 452-4. He set an NCAA record as the only coach to win his first three games by 60 points, and won his first 11 games by 20 points. The Vanderbilt athletics office was named after McGugin. He was a charter member of the College Football Hall of Fame as a coach in 1951, the inaugural year. Journalist Fred Russell [see below] had this to say about McGugin: "For years he ruled supreme in Dixie, and his teams won many glorious intersectional victories. More than any one man, he was responsible for the progress of southern football.... He was the first coach to successfully work the onside kick. He was among the first to bring out guards in the interference.... His name will never die."
Red Sanders: 1940-1942, 1946-1948; 36-22-2. Sanders had a short stay in Nashville, but achieved the second victory over a ranked team (#7 Alabama, 1941) and the first Top 20 ranking in school history. He finished his last season at Vanderbilt with an 8 game single season win streak, which still stands as the second longest in school history. Sanders would then leave Vanderbilt for UCLA, where he would win a National Championship and become famous for his quote on competition: winning isn't everything, it's the only thing.
James Franklin: 2011-Present; 15-11. In late 2010, Vanderbilt lured a young coordinator and head-coach-in-waiting away from Maryland. While Franklin was untested, athletic director David Williams and Chancellor Nick Zeppos saw something they liked. Since then, Franklin has put in major efforts to change the culture of the school and the mindset of students, athletes, and fans. He took a team that was coming off of back-to-back 2-10 seasons and turned them into a bowl eligible team, playing big name teams close and almost knocking off Tennessee in Neyland Stadium in the process. 2012, however, was a year that involved re-writing record books and returning the team to levels last seen in the Sanders and McGugin eras. Perhaps his greatest strength has been in the work he and his assistants have done - most of them came from small programs and were chosen because they didn't have pre-existing prejudices, and they've not only stayed, but done an amazing job at developing the talent they had. DC Bob Shoop, in particular, has turned the Vanderbilt defense into one of the best squads in the SEC, and country, in terms of efficiency and scoring. How long Franklin stays and how far he takes the program remain to be seen, but he has made it clear that this isn't "Same Old Vandy" anymore.
Greatest Rivalries:

Rivals

Tennessee: [Overall Record: 29-73-5] To put another team here, despite how lopsided the overall record suggests this rivalry is, would just be wrong. Sacrilegious. Scandalous. Downright perverse.
This rivalry stretches back to 1892, when Vanderbilt dominated the Leather Era of Football in the South, earning 11 wins before first losing to Tennessee in 1914. They notched 8 more wins before 1926, when Tennessee hired General Robert Neyland and gave him the Prime Directive: "Beat Vanderbilt." That he did, giving rise to the modern Tennessee program while losing to Vanderbilt only three times in the years he coached, before retiring in 1952. Since Neyland's departure in 1952, Vanderbilt has only notched SEVEN wins against the Program from the East, despite playing them every year.
It's hard to understate the hatred that emanates from Vanderbilt fans towards Tennessee, especially the older generations. Parents and grandparents of current Vanderbilt students can't remember a time when the in-state, intraconference archrival wasn't an almost-guaranteed loss on the schedule, and living 365 days a year surrounded by orange and fans stuck in 1998 is enough to drive anyone a little mad. It is a horrible color, isn't it? But there have been two recent victories over Tennessee that give Vanderbilt fans hope: 2005 was the first victory in Neyland Stadium in 30 years (Jay Cutler and Earl Bennett for the win), and last year the Commodores thrashed the Volunteers at home, 41-18. The crowd in this video is enough to give me chills every time.
Ole Miss: [Overall Record: 38-47-2] This rivalry stretches back to November 10, 1894, and it is one the SEC's oldest and most protected rivalries that you've probably never heard of. The first game between the two teams was played on would later be named Currey Field on Vanderbilt's campus, where the Commodores beat the Mississippi Flood 40-0 (no Rebels or Black Bears yet!). These two teams are permanent cross-divisional opponents in the SEC, and they have played every year since 1970. These two schools have the smallest student bodies in the SEC and a reputation for frattiness and different approaches to gameday celebrations.
Vanderbilt has won 6 of the last 8 meetings, which has frustrated Ole Miss fans to no end. Still, this is an understated Gentleman's Rivalry, and the fans on both sides feel like they have a chance to win this game so it's always competitive.
Kentucky: [Overall Record: 40-41-4] A couple of years ago, Kentucky and Vanderbilt would play most every year for the dubious distinction of "penultimate worst team in the conference." The first game was played in 1896, but it wasn't until 1939 that Kentucky first beat Vanderbilt. The two teams have played every year since 1953.
Current Vanderbilt coach James Franklin is 2-0 against the Wildcats, by a combined score of 78-8. While Mark Stoops may be able to turn Kentucky around, for the time being it looks like Franklin has the Wildcats' number.
Wake Forest: [Overall Record: 9-6-0] This has been, in a sense, an arranged marriage between the SEC and ACC; two black-and-gold private institutions with historically mediocre football teams and a reputation for academics. The recent series, played on ACC/SEC rivalry beatdownweekend, has been relatively even, but there just doesn't seem to be much animosity or even excitement on either side. Still, Wake has been a good match for Vanderbilt, for the time being. Wake's BB&T Field also served as inspiration for Vanderbilt, who used turf from the field to create berm seating in the open end of the horseshoe.
Northwestern: [Overall Record: 1-2-1] Ahh, the Rivalry That Could Have Been. Following a trend of scheduling "academic schools" like Duke, Rice, and Army, this matchup had a lot of promise. The two schools have only played 4 times, and the Wildcats have escaped with wins in the last two years. At the beginning of this year's off-season, Vanderbilt cancelled games with Northwestern and Ohio State with a couple of Dear John letters, due in part to post-expansion conference scheduling and the addition of a four-game home/home with newly FBS UMass. Despite the odd breakup that was Lettergate, both schools' fans seemed to enjoy and wished to continue this rivalry; perhaps as Vanderbilt's program grows more and more consistent in the rough-and-tumble SEC, the game can be reinstated.
Traditions
  • The Anchor: Vanderbilt football began using the anchor as a symbol of strength and support in 2004 under Head Coach Bobby Johnson, who wanted the anchor to symbolize unity and strength throughout the program. The anchor is also taken to all road games.
  • The Admiral: The naval horn has resided atop the pressbox of Vanderbilt Stadium since 1993. It is used to remind fans of upcoming pre-game activities as well as being sounded when the football team takes the field and after every Commodore score. Since its inception, the honor of sounding the horn has always been the responsibility of Vanderbilt's Navy ROTC. The horn also sounds after road victories to let those on campus know that Vanderbilt has won.
  • Victory Flag: Following each football team victory, a solid black flag with the Vanderbilt Athletic mark is hoisted above the west side of Vanderbilt Stadium, where it remains for seven days. This tradition began in 2004. Students and fans alike know to look for the Victory Flag after every conquest.
  • The Star Walk: The Star Walk tradition began in the 1990s after athletic department officials had stars, representing the athletic logo, painted on the sidewalk and Jess Neely Drive from the football team's locker room facility in McGugin Center down the tunnel leading into Vanderbilt Stadium. The team's walk to its stadium locker facility was quickly dubbed Star Walk in reference to the star logos painted along the route. Over the years, it has grown in interest through participation by the marching band and better communication with the fans. The best attended Star Walks have flooded Jess Neely Drive with Commodore faithful hoping to see and encourage their favorite player or coach.
  • Alma Mater: following home games, players gather at the edge of the field nearest the student section. The band then plays the alma mater, pausing for the line "conquer and prevail" to be shouted, while students, players, alumni, and fans lock arms and sing along.
  • "Tailgating:" Since ~90% of students live on campus all four years (when major dorm renovation projects aren't on-going), Vanderbilt students don't participate in normal SEC-style tailgating. Instead, they dress in their frattiest attire and make their way towards the stadium early on gameday, but stop for a few hours at their fraternity of choice. Once there, they proceed to rage until gametime. Things can get a little rowdy. Traditionally, these parties have continued until halftime, before inebriated students staggered across the street to the stadium to see the final touches put on another Vandy loss. The fraternities now shut down a half hour before kick-off, at Coach Franklin's request. He had more success controlling the festivities than some "missionaries" who tried it.
  • Running onto the field: every year, the incoming freshman class gathers for a special ("alcohol-free") tailgate before the first home game and then proceeds to run onto the field, led by the chancellor.
  • The Commodore Creed: posted in the locker room and a key aspect of our team culture.
New traditions: under coach James Franklin, the university has adopted or embraced some new traditions.
  • VU hand sign: while this hand sign was popular under previous coaches, it has now come into its own as a simple reminder of school pride. Coach Franklin has incorporated it into his "Six Seconds" philosophy - worry about the present and focus on giving 100% for the next six seconds (the average length of one play). Fans and players alike now raise the VU with both hands, six fingers denoting the six seconds.
  • Undefeated each week: the team begins each Sunday 0-0, focusing on the opponent they play that week in an attempt to go 1-0 before starting back with a clean slate the next day. While some journalists have been frustrated by the team's unwillingness to discuss the season's record or refusal to look ahead to future games, the tone has been set: prepare for your opponent, win, celebrate for a few hours, and then get back to work.
Campus and Surrounding Area
City Population: 624,496; 1,726,693 metro City Skyline 'Murica Iconic Campus Buildings: Kirkland Hall, Wyatt Center, Central Library, LEED-certified Commons Center and Quad.
Local Dining: There's a lot of great places in Nashville to eat, and it's kind of hard to only list two or three. For those of you who find yourselves in town, here's the down and dirty on some good places to hit up.
Satco for quick Tex-Mex near campus.
MacDougal's in the Village, great chicken tenders, cool atmosphere.
Rotier's right across from campus - one of the places that inspired Jimmy Buffet's Cheeseburger in Paradise recipe, great shakes/onion rings/burgers (especially on toast).
Ted's Montana Grill - all kinds of bison stuff on the menu, pretty cool place for a chain, just up West End from campus.
If you're staying Downtown near the capital, Varallo's is a neat place. Oldest restaurant in Nashville, famous for their chilli, and good, quick, cheap breakfast. Demos' is also downtown and has really good steak and spaghetti for a very reasonable price.
Dessert: Las Paletas - Mexican style popsicles made from whole fruit - delicious, available at Fido's in the Village or at the main store. Jackson's - fried ice cream, deep fried Twinkies, etc., also in the Village. There are a ton (seriously, like 7 to 10) frozen yogurt places near campus, as well.
GREATEST RESTAURANT IN NASHVILLE: Monell's in Germantown. Amazing, all-you-can-eat Southern food served family style. Great experience. Sunday brunch is a great combo of breakfast and lunch, and Saturday breakfast will leave you absolutely stuffed.
Another Southern food place that's slightly out of the way, near the Gaylord Opryland Hotel: Cock of the Walk has fried chicken and fish, cornbread, etc. and you'll get plenty of food. Celebs sometimes show up there, kind of like a less-well known Loveless.
Plus, there's the more well-known stuff: Loveless (pretty far out, but good food); Stockyard (not worth it, in my opinion - interesting atmosphere but the steaks are better, and possibly even cheaper, at Ruth's Chris), but it is a "Top 10 in the US" type place - warning: no prices on the menus; Prince's Hot Chicken Shack (only go if you like it hot; neighborhood is a little sketchier than the others listed); Pancake Pantry (it's pancakes - people seem to get really excited about this place, not sure why), and there's a huge line during peak breakfast hours; best to go at about 10AM or so midweek); Bluebird Cafe - famous for its live music (I think a replica of it is featured on the show Nashville).
Bars: Patterson House is more expensive and fancier, but they do have things like bacon-infused bourbon, special runs of Four Roses, and good desserts; was listed in GQ's list of top bars in the country. Look for the sign for The Catbird Seat. If you like karaoke, Printer's Alley is the place to go (I usually go to Lonnie's). Lower Broad is the heart of Nashville, with places like Tootsie's, Robert's Western World, and a gazillion hole in the wall honky tonks and piano bars. Just wander around till you find one with a live band playing that you like. There are also the chain places downtown - BB King's, Wildhorse, and Coyote Ugly, and Margaritaville has live music, too. For cheaper, more college-type bars, Demonbreun is the place to go. Tin Roof, Dan McGuinness, and Red Rooster are pretty popular, and the beers should be cheaper.
Random Trivia
  • Vanderbilt currently holds winning records against teams like: Penn State, Clemson, Texas, Maryland, and Purdue.
  • CFB coaches Watson and Mack Brown both attended Vanderbilt, and Watson would later return as head coach. He isn't as good as his brother. Mack only stayed for a short period of time before transferring to Florida State. Like Mack, model Molly Sims also studied at Vanderbilt for a short time before leaving for career reasons. Those aren't really related, I was just looking for an excuse.
  • While Vanderbilt does not offer a journalism major, it has developed a reputation for sports journalism. Grantland Rice, the Dean of American Sportswriters and possibly the greatest American sportswriter, was a Vanderbilt alumnus. Many others have followed in his (giant) footsteps: protege Fred Russell, ESPN writer Buster Olney, Dave Sheinin at The Washington Post, SI's Mark Bechtel and Lee Jenkins, and Tyler Kepner of the NYT, and others. If you've never heard of any of these people, maybe you've heard of The Four Horsemen of Notre Dame, the blog Grantland, or this line: "For when the One Great Scorer comes to write against your name— He marks—not that you won or lost—but how you played the game."
  • A Vanderbilt chemistry professor founded the SIAA, which would break the ground for the later formation of the NCAA. The membership would eventually consist of 27 FBS schools including all SEC schools (except Mizzou and Arkansas), six ACC schools, and Texas.
  • Vanderbilt was a founding member of the .
  • In 2012, Vanderbilt was one of two schools in the "20-20-20" club - top 20 placings in football, recruiting, and USN&WR rankings (alongside Notre Dame).
  • The gates near Kirkland Hall were originally used to keep livestock from wandering onto campus.
  • Peabody College, now one of four colleges that make up Vanderbilt (and home to many athletes majoring in Human & Organizational Development, as well as the #1 education program in the country), was originally a women's college and the target of panty raids by Vandy men. Peabody was founded in 1785.
  • The 330 acres that make up the Vandy campus are a national aboretum, meaning that every tree native to Tennessee can be found on campus. There is also an extremely large population of squirrels, which has led to a resident population of hawks.
  • While Vanderbilt only claims one NCAA championship (in women's bowling) and only offers 15 varsity sports, it still ranks 12th in the SEC. Ole Miss and Mississippi State have never won a NC.
  • Former Chancellor Gordon Gee did away with the title of athletic director, making Vanderbilt one of the few programs in the country without an AD. Current Chancellor Zeppos re-established the position in 2012 to reflect the renewed emphasis placed on athletics.
  • The average athlete GPA is 3.09, and 3.2 is now the future goal.
  • Vanderbilt is the only SEC program to have never been placed on probation for rules violations. (Knock on wood.)
  • Only 8 major programs in 2011 and 6 programs in 2012 had a football team play in a bowl and both basketball teams and their baseball team play in the NCAA tournament. Vanderbilt was the only program to do so in both years.
  • For the first 40 years of its existence, Vanderbilt was affiliated with and governed by the Southern Methodist church.
  • Vanderbilt is the second-largest private employer in Tennessee (after FedEx).
  • The best Vandy coach to follow on Twitter? That would be offensive line coach Herb Hand. He posts a little bit of everything, but I don't suggest going after his family.
  • The best Vandy alum to watch in the NFL: Zac Stacy. Record-breaking RB at Vandy, he's the type of player you can't hate - humble, hard-working, and a genuinely good person. He majored in special education because of his younger brother, who has special needs. He's been drafted by the Rams, but his goal is to help other children like his brother.
What Is and What is to Come
2012 followed up where 2011 had left off - instead of losing 5 games by a TD or less, the team won three close games and, perhaps even more importantly, learned how to finish out games competitively (sometimes resulting in embarassingly high margins of victory - sorry UK, Presby, and UMass). It was a record breaking season:
  • Longest road winning streak (4) since 1950
  • Longest win streak (7) since 1948 (LONGEST ACTIVE WIN STREAK IN THE )
  • Most times scoring 40 or more points (5) since 1915
  • Longest play from scrimmage in school history (Zac Stacy, 90 yards)
  • First player in school history to rush for 1000+ yards in consecutive years (Stacy)
  • First player in school history to rush for 3000 yards in a career (Stacy, 3143 yards, 30 TDs, 581 carries)
  • Single season receiving record (Jordan Matthews, 1262 yards)
  • Single season most points record (Carey Spear, 81 pts)
  • Largest margin of victory over Tennessee (23) since 1946
  • Largest margin of victory over Kentucky (40) since 1916
  • First home win against Tennessee in 30 years
  • First regular season winning season (above .500) since 1982
  • First 8 win season since 1982
  • First 9 win season since 1915
  • First back-to-back bowl berths IN SCHOOL HISTORY
  • Finished the season with a top 25 ranking (#20, 23) for the first time since 1948.
Vanderbilt looks to build off of this performance in 2013, but a difficult schedule (four teams who finished in the top 10 last season plus a competitive Ole Miss and new coaches at UK/UT) will make a repeat performance extremely difficult, if not impossible. However, Franklin and his staff have brought in a record high top 25 recruiting class and have several experienced players on both sides of the ball, with a veteran secondary and one of the best receiving duos in the SEC. While a 6-win season would feel like a letdown, another bowl trip would take Franklin even farther into uncharted territory. (For reference, LSU hired Gerry DiNardo after he went a mere 19-25 at Vandy, and Red Sanders turned a 36-22-2 tenure into a 9 year career at UCLA.)
In terms of team records, 2013 presents several opportunities: in 2011, Vandy had 0 winning records against SEC teams. This season, Vandy has the chance to build upon its new winning record against Auburn by taking the lead in series against Mizzou and Texas A&M while tying the record with Kentucky. The biggest opportunity, however, will also be the hardest to achieve - if the team has 5 or more wins than losses, the school's overall record will be at .500 or above.
Be sure to tune in to ESPN on September 29 to see take on , and don't forget to anchor down.
More Information Subreddit: /Vanderbilt Contributors: drock4vu, taskmaster7, _Colonel_Angus_, bties, Fleurr, srs_house
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