Mar 272015
 

D&D Princes of the Apocalypse Dungeons DragonsThe newest Dungeons and Dragons 5.0 adventure hardcover, Princes of the Apocalypse, is out today.  This volume includes a full adventure for characters levels one to fifteen as well as new spells and an entirely new, playable race, the element-touched genasi.Steam Torpedo

Players looking for a new two player experience (which is not always the easiest endeavor), should check out Steam Torpedo First Contact.  Following the first world war, players take control of submarines and battle with each other for oceanic dominance.  First, you will construct a submarine from select parts, resulting in hundreds of possibilities.  Second, you Realm of Heroespit these submarines against each other in a battle of underwater tactics.

In Realm of Heroes, players will balance a number of resources, including building castles and recruiting heroes that will become your army.  The trick is that the game board will alter as the game progresses, making it incredibly difficult to consistently field your army and plan your strategy.Dragons of Tarkir launch

Dragons of Tarkir, the third set in the Khans of Tarkir block and the final set of Magic before the company switches to the new two set release schedule, is out this weekend.  As is normal, this release means that not only are booster packs on sale, but also Fat Packs, Event Decks, Intro Decks, and the standard assortment of Clockwork Kingdomsleeves, deck boxes, and playmats.

Anyone who enjoys resource management games like Belfort, Clockwork Kingdom is a steampunk version of the same.  After the king of the Clockwork Kingdom has passed away, it’s a free for all for the throne and you will be playing one of the nominees!  In order to claim victory, you will need to make strategic decisions to claim workers, resources, build mechanisms, and encounter other opponents on the battlefield.Star Wars Armada

A parallel game to the highly popular Star Wars X-Wing miniature game, Star Wars Armada, is finally on shelves.  This hotly anticipated release is a to scale ship-to-ship battle game where players control capital class ships, like the Star Destroyer and the Corellian Corvette, as well as lower class ships, like Tie Fighters and X-Wings.  All the ships move on a template system, similar to but unique enough from X-Wing.

 

Dec 052014
 

Spider-Man and the X-Men #1Spider-Man and the X-Men #1

-With Wolverine dead, someone has to take over the day-to-day operations at the Jean Grey School.

-A relaunch of the previous Wolverine and the X-Men series, Spider-Man and the X-Men continues with all the same, fan favorite characters.

-Take a chance on a new Marvel writer, as Elliott Kalan takes over authorial duties.

-Peter desperately tries to keep his students alive while the school is attacked by Sauron!

Harley Quinn Holiday Special #1Harley Quinn Holiday Special #1

-Part of DC‘s plan to have a Harley Quinn for every season!

-The writers of the ongoing Harley Quinn series, Amanda Connor and Jimmy Palmiotti, deliver another oversized special, like they did with the scratch-n-sniff annual.

-Similar to Harley Quinn #0, this Holiday Special is full of astounding comic artists, each lending their interpretation of the mad maiden!

-As is common with the series, this special issue comes with two different covers, both at the same price!

Bitch Planet #1Bitch Planet #1

-Fan favorite writer Kelly Sue DeConnick (Captain Marvel, Pretty Deadly) delivers another Image series!

-Bitch Planet, if you can’t tell, blends together Sci-Fi and prison exploitation genres for a raunchy, violent, and unreal ongoing series!

-When one prisoner gets framed for murder, she has to enter into a deadly prison-on-prison sport to survive!

-Jamie McKelvie (Young Avengers, Phonogram, X-Men Season One) also provides an afro-tastic, seventies influenced variant cover for issue one!

The Valiant #1 (of 4)

-Over the last few years, Valiant has been gaining a reputation as one of the most inventive, original comic The Valiant #1publishers around.  If you haven’t read any Valiant comics, THIS IS THE ONE TO PICK UP!

-Matt Kindt (Mind MGMT, Rai) and Jeff Lemire (Green Arrow, Animal Man, Trillium) combine their writing talents for this prestige format miniseries with the intention of making this the Watchmen of Valiant!

-Starring a line-up of Valiant‘s most popular characters, The Valiant‘s four oversized issues will follow the The Eternal Warrior, an immortal being who protects the Earth, in his battle against an everlasting evil.  Problem is, The Eternal Warrior has lost three times before, each time slipping the world into a dark age.  Will he and his team of Valiant mainstays win this round?

-Exceptional artist Paolo Rivera (Daredevil, Amazing Spider-Man, Batman: Black and White) raises the bar with the series, as his smooth line and rich characters make this an epic not to be missed.

May 042013
 

There’s been whining about Avengers Arena out there, about how it’s just Hunger Games or Battle Royale, about how it’s all just a gimmick to kill characters, waah, waah, waah!  We’ll we’re here to tell those people to shut up.  Avengers Arena is easily one of the best books to come out of the Marvel NOW line of relaunch comics.  And that is for the same reason that all the above complaints mean nothing:  characters.  Dennis Hopeless excels at many aspects of the narrative process, but primary among them is his ability to write layered, rounded, fascinating characters.  With characters you care about it doesn’t matter what plot structure you apply (because let’s be honest, they’re all just repeats of Shakespeare), the story is always compelling.  So, place your bets, because sixteen teenage superheroes have entered into a deadly game of cat-and-laser-shooting-adolescent.  And only one will leave.

Shaw is on the run.  He’s been running for hundreds of years.  ’Cause he’s immortal.  And pissed off.  Now he’s in Chicago, surrounded by gangsters, police, and other mystical creatures who want him dead.  But that’s okay, because he’s got a closet full of Tommyguns and a pack full of smokes.  This is Chin Music.  Steve Niles (30 Days of Night) and Tony Harris (Starman, Ex Machina) have combined their mighty horror powers to produce a moody ongoing series of sci-fi scares and supernatural action.  If you loved this week’s Ten Grand, you’ll dig Chin Music.

Thanks to this next trade paperback, I just jumped backwards in time and change the course of the day so that Free Comic Book Day occurred on May the 4th.  That’s right, time travel.  Comeback is a political thriller basted in a thick coding of time travel mayhem.  Two agents for a prestigious time traveling firm (who you hire to go back in time and stop you from dying) get stuck in the past, chased by the FBI, and their own bosses, who’ve come back to “wipe out the evidence”.  Think Criminal meets Back to the Future.

Finally, because it was FCBD (meaning it was a madhouse), we’ll end tonight on a simply mathematical picture of the Jake figure from the Adventure Time Pop Vinyl figures coming in this Wednesday (also including Finn and Marceline).

Jan 192013
 

If your question is “What kind of badass comic awesomeness will Dennis Hopeless unleash on the world next?”, the answer is The Answer.  In the works for a number of years, Dark Horse Comics is finally releasing Dennis’ next miniseries which, as a series released independent of the big two comic companies, means anything goes.  The Answer, himself, is the hero of a standard metropolitan city who crosses paths with a punky librarian chick.  Together the two begin to uncover a conspiracy that sends them running for their lives.  As usual, because it’s Dennis, they do so while spouting some of the quickest, wittiest dialog on the block.  Oh, and if you’re a fan of the horror series Revival or the great web comic Battlepug, you’ll be glad to know The Answer was created in conjunction with Mike Norton.  Any more questions?

It’s a young hero’s world out there.

One of my most anticipated Marvel NOW! series launches this next Wednesday and it is Young Avengers.  Written by the too-cool-for-school Kieron Gillen (Journey in MysteryPhonogram) and drawn by X-Men: Season One‘s Jamie McKelvie, this version of Young Avengers is all about partying, music, partying, dancing, drinking, and partying.  Oh, but with superpowers.  The child version of Loki last seen in Gillen’s Journey into Mystery run has set out to improve his image and become a “good guy”, finding the best way to do this is to assemble a team of young heroes.  We’ll see how that goes.  If you loved the two official Young Avengers series of recent years, then you be happy to see many of those character popping back up in a book that continues to grow them as characters, mostly by seeing them through their stupid, irrational teenage years.  Oh, and did I mention the partying.

Countdown to Darkness may be a goofy title that elicits images of someone standing by a light switch yelling that they’ll turn it off in any moment, but the fact that Star Trek precedes it makes it noteworthy.  This new four issue miniseries from IDW is the prequel to this summer’s sequel to J.J. Abrams Star Trek reboot, filling in the gaps between the last movie and the new one.  Written and overseen by Robert Orci, one of the screenwriters of the film, what happens here is the official continuity of the film universe.  For instance, you’ll see Klingons here before they appear in the film.  And if you read the previous Countdown miniseries for the last film, you’ll know that this one will enrich the story rather than  simply paddle in one place only to make money and not mess with the film.

Finally, tonight’s last shoutout is going to be a simple one, because it can be.

Deadpool

Versus.

Classic literary characters.

That’s Deadpool vs. Moby Dick, Deadpool vs. Tom Sawyer, Deadpool vs. Ebeneezer Scrooge, and so on.

Deadpool Killustrated.  Buy it.

Jan 042013
 

Can you believe it’s been ten years since BANG! came out?

To celebrate, the BANG! 10th Anniversary edition of the base game has come riding into town.  Unlike the base version of the game, this edition comes with a number of additional extras that enhance gameplay.  Wooden bullets and premium player boards organize the life totals and card arrangement, respectively.  Also included are a “Most Wanted” rogues gallery of character cards from the various expansions for the game, which include two cards from the Valley of Shadows expansion which was only released in the Czech Republic.  A completely new character is also held within the metal confines of the box, one featuring a cowgirl.  Giddy on it, liddle doggies.

Rule one is:  Don’t let the natives get restless!

In Archipelago the colonists players control have to walk a tightrope of resource management and worker placement, while also carefully choosing to side with or backstab their opponents.  As you mine Carribean settlement for resources, you must also transform these natural commodities into cash by selling them at market or overseas in the homeland.  Construction of temples, markets, and whole cities must also be carefully balanced as to not leave the natives unsatisfied or organized because they will rise up.  And though that may sound like a way to unseat your opponent, a violent uprising will end the game for everyone, so it’s in your best interest to quell them as they sprout up.

Core Worlds receives its first expansion set this weekend in Galactic Orders.  Alliances are beginning to form in this galaxy-spanning war, a development that has brought in various Galactic Orders represented by oversized cards.  Each Order possesses unique abilities, all of which are laid out clearly on their adjoining card.  As players utilize cards with faction distinctions on them, they in turn place their faction tokens onto Galactic Order cards, either to gain points at the end of the game or activate the Galactic Order abilities for your benefit.  If you’ve ever been party to any galactic politics (and who hasn’t?), you’ll realize that Core Worlds: Galactic Orders recreates such discussions perfectly.

Judging from the box description, Panic On Wall Street! will have you punching your friends in their faces with glee.  Sounds amazing to me!  A party game unlike any other, Panic On Wall Street! has players yelling across each other to win intense bidding wars, attempting to collect the most money possible.  Use speculation!  Use intimidation!  Use force!  Use a large mallet to smack others in the naughty bits!  Warning, the application of alcohol may result in bloody murder.