Sep 212013
 

Powerpuff Girls #1

-IDW continues its dominance of the young girl audience (see My Little Pony) with Powerpuff Girls #1!

-Cartoonist and storyboard artist Troy Little brings Littletown to life in this first issue on the ongoing series.

-Each issue will feature two covers in a 50:50 ratio.  All the covers come covered in Chemical X.

Rat Queens #1

-It’s the ladies turn to dungeon crawl!

-Kurtis J. Wiebe, the author behind cult hits like Peter Panzerfaust, Debris, and Grim Leaper, joins with Image Comics once again!

-An all-female group of thieves, clerics, and other fantasy folk are hired out on various missions of mayhem in this new ongoing series!

-Pathfinder readers and D&D players take note, this is every great campaign you’ve ever run crammed into a single comic series!

Trial of the Punisher #1

-The start of a lean, mean two issue miniseries that follows up Greg Rucka’s most recent Punisher series.

-Written by former lawyer Marc Guggenheim, Trial of the Punisher will be a tight, gripping, accurate courtroom drama.

-Leinil Francis Yu, current artist of The Avengers, lends his sketchy, active pencils to the series, rendering Frank as gritty as possible.

-Will Frank avoid jail after he’s turned himself in for murdering the District Attorney?  Join the jury and cast your vote!

Sex Criminals #1

-On the heels of Joe Casey’s lurid Sex miniseries, Sex Criminals brings the raunchy to Image Comics!

-Written by hipster comic creator extraordinary Matt Fraction, Sex Criminals #1 is smart, uncommon, and entirely dirty.

-A woman.  A man.  Both can stop time.  With their naughty bits.  Yup.

-When these two meet, criminal hi-jinks ensue, as does the bumping of said naughty bits.  Certainly the for mature readers only!

May 252013
 

Facebook and iTunes have the market cornered on useless updates, so we’re going to try something different here and update the format for a reason.  Tonight we’re going to try out a new, more concise format for Comic List Highlights, one we intend to call 4 x 4.  It’s simple, four facts about four new comics or trade paperbacks coming out the next Wednesday.  Short.  Sweet.  Less of an eyesore.

Adventures of Superman #1

1. Ignore the hubbub about Orson Scott Card writing this book, because he’s been replaced on issue one by some of DC‘s best artists and writers, including Jeff Parker, Jeff Lemire, Riley Rossmo, and Chris Samnee.

2. Samnee’s Golden Age-esque style has been put to great use on Daredevil and The Rocketeer lately, and now does the same for Superman.

3. Contrasting Samnee’s style, Riley Rossmo’s (Bedlam, Debris, Cowboy Ninja Viking) sketchy style is exemplifies the high contrast of visual styles represented in this issue.

4. This anthology brings the baddies with stories about Lex Luthor, Bizzaro, and Zod.  Oh, and maybe some Superman, too.

Thor, God of Thunder v.1 HC

1. Kansas City native Jason Aaron has been weaving a Thor yarn for the ages, destined to become a modern classic.

2. Split across three time periods, God of Thunder stars three incarnations of Thor, past, present, and arm-less, one-eyed, Odin-like future.

3. Esad Ribic’s painterly style lends an epic, tapestry-like quality to the series that enhances its mythic tone.

4. Thor.  Loves.  Ale.

X-Men #1

1. Forget testosterone, it’s all estrogen all the time thanks to the all female cast of X-Men #1.

2. Brian Wood has dabbled with the X-Men in the past on Ultimate Comics X-Men and the previous X-Men series, but now gets the keys to the kingdom in this Marvel NOW! series.

3. Olivier Coipel’s (House of M) slick, appealing style works equally well for dialog and action scenes, which, the last time I checked, are the X-Men’s bread and butter.

4. Milo Manara and Terry Dodson both have contributed variant covers for the first issue!

 

The Wake #1

1. Current writer of Batman and Superman Unchained, Scott Snyder, returns to his horror roots with the Vertigo series, The Wake.

2. In previous horror series Severed and American Vampire Snyder showed his vast talent for pacing scares on the comic page, not an easy task.

3. Sean Murphy of Joe the Barbarian and Punk Rock Jesus joins Snyder to tell this confined thriller which follows a marine biologist as she ventures into the icy waters of the Arctic Circle to explore a sunken oil rig…and what resides there.

4. Fans of isolated suspense movies like The Thing and Alien need to check The Wake #1 out!

Dec 212012
 

It’s not quite to midnight yet (as I start writing this), but I’m calling it in favor of us all outlasting the Mayan apocalypse.  If you didn’t get enough of the end-of-the-world conspiracy theory, then Tzolk’in:  The Mayan Calendar is here to supply you with more.  The oft talked about Mayan calendar plays into the mechanics of the game, as players carefully place their Mayan Meeples onto interlocking gears which rotate around the board, moving the pieces to different action zones.  To accomplish placement and conduct other key actions, players must spend corn, ultimately attempting to please the gods or constructing underground temples.  So, until the next apocalypse myth comes along, make mine Tzolk’in.

Is the force strong with you?

Or have you given into the dark side?

Either way, you’ve got a side to play in the new two-player Star Wars LCG card game from Fantasy Flight.  Set-up like many of their other popular LCGs (but with more X-Wings and stuff), Star Wars has players choosing sides in a head-to-head battle for galactic domination.  Players then balance objective decks (containing mission cards) and player decks (containing character and equipment cards) in order to complete their assigned tasks.  As with Magic the Gathering or most other CCG-style games, players place/play their cards into the center of the table in order to activate them.  Of course, the real question of the game will be, who shot first?

I’m going bet that many who read this have fantasized about manning a starship at one time in their life.  Be careful what you wish for, however.  Space Cadets fulfills that wish by assigning each player an important role on the bridge of a freshly minted starship.  This cooperative game for three to six players enlists a captain, helmsman, engineer, and weapons, shield, and sensor officers.  Each member of the crew has a specific  task to complete in order for the entire team to win, so make sure you staff your bridge wisely, or else it’ll be your final frontier.

Bad guys need friends, too.  Eclipse:  Rise of the Ancients is the first expansion for the epic space battle game, Eclipse, introduces tons of ancient adversaries which can assist all the baddies from the original game.  Along with these foes, the expansion also includes original rare technologies, developments, alliances, ancient homeworlds, and warp portals.  Three brand new player boards also offer four new alien races to choose from.  And with the game’s modular design, all or some of these additions can mixed in with the contents of the base game, completely at your discretion.

Dec 142012
 

Managing to actually beat the next Star Wars films into the world, the Fantasy Flight Star Wars RPG base set has, shockingly, arrived earlier than expected.  Copying the Pathfinder Beginner Box method of release, Star Wars Edge of the Empire is also released in a beginner box format, coming with all the essentials for play.  Included in the box is a quick-to-learn rule booklet that will teach anyone, even the most uninitiated roleplayer, how to play the game.  Dice, pre-generated character sheets (which are ready-to-play), an adventure book, tokens, and much more are also included.  Create your own galaxy far, far away by picking up this one, catch-all Beginner Box.

Maybe you haven’t heard, but there’s this movie called The Hobbit coming out this weekend.  I don’t know, people are excited.  In a brilliant stroke of cross-marketing, Fantasy Flight has released a new Hobbit trick-taking card game.  A head-to-head battle of good versus evil, The Hobbit card game has players taking on the roles of Bilbo, Gandalf, and Thorin to take on the forces of Smaug and Bolg.  Each card has its own special abilities as well as associations with good or evil, which will benefit or harm them depending on the items being attached to them.  Trust me, you’re going to need something to keep you and your five friends busy while your sitting in line waiting for tickets.

In an effort to make an RPG system for every corner of the Warhammer 40K universe, the Only War Core Rulebook drops today.  Focusing on the Imperial Guardsmen, Only War allows players to control any of the twelve specialties, whether that’s the powerful Heavy Gunner or the beneficial Medic.  The game also supports all forms of interaction with easy-to-understand rules capable of handling conversations to mass battles.  Also, by the weird possibility that you’re playing a 40K game without knowing anything about the universe, this rulebook comes with complete background details on the Imperial Guard and all their enemies.

The fire is rising, brother.  And you just read that in Bane’s voice.

Though he, technically, has nothing to do with Dominare, Bane’s general revolutionary plan does share some similarities with the gameplay.  It’s all about influencing the citizens of Tempest with secret backdoor dealings, underhanded treachery, and cunning.  Each player controls different agents of the underworld, sending them into eight different city districts to begin spreading rumors of a conspiracy that will upset the city’s balance.  In the end, its all about control and who possesses it.

Ticket to Ride continues to trek across the globe for its most recent map expansion packs, this time landing in Africa.  Ticket to Ride: The Heart of Africa (beside being a minor reference to Joseph Conrad’s famous short story) features an entirely original map of the country, complete with new terrain cards which specific different track colors for different geographical regions.  Players can multiply their points by using them in conjunction with particular routes.  As Ticket to Ride is one of the best family games on the stands since forever, so keep it fresh and interesting for yours by picking up this new expansion.

Wares!  Fine wares!  Get your fine wares right here!

Continuing from Catan Histories previous releases, Merchants of Europe is the newest stand-alone Catan edition.  This augmentation of the basic Settlers of Catan rules has players controlling merchants and trading posts in various cities in Europe, attempting to expand their mercantile reach ever further.  Ultimately, your goal should be to recruit as many new merchants as you can in an effort to build trading posts further from your original locations and acquire different commodities (i.e. sugar, wood, sheep, etc.) for trade and sale.  Along with this, players must also build trading routes over which they will need to transport their goods, hoping they’ve built them in safe areas or else have their product pillaged from under them.

Dec 072012
 

Just like in an Indiana Jones movie, just when you think you’re out of the tomb, the floor collapses and you fall into bed of snakes.

Such is the concept behind the new expansion pieces for Escape.  If you haven’t heard of this popular Queen Game, it’s a real-time adventurer where every player goes at the same time, attempting to collect as many the tomb’s hidden gems as they can before the clock runs out.  Hitting stores after being given out as Kickstarter incentives, The Pit and Doomed are the first expansion pieces for the game.  Both provide new tiles which represent additional deadly rooms in the temple.  The Pit traps players down a deep hole after they’ve rolled five curses.  Doomed provides two new curses and one new tile, all with exciting properties.

The only option is Zombicide.

A co-operative survival game, Zombicide is a catch-22 run amok as players must kill more zombies to earn skill points, but killing zombies only results in more zombies.  The other tricky thing is that there will inevitably be more undead than you have bullets, so you’re really going to want to earn up those skill points to buy more ammo and weapons.  This popular Kickstarter joins and outpaces many of the other zombie games out there.  So, lock and load, folks.

All is fair in love and war.  AEG‘s Love Letter is a reality dating show dropped into the Renascence.  A group of eligible bachelors compete for the hand of a stunning princess who’s locked herself in the castle’s highest tower.  The only way you can lay your flirtatious mojo on her is through alluring prose delivered via letter.  Of course, all the other prospective suitors had the same idea, so you will have to find ways of intercepting and destroying their letters.  But don’t focus all your attention on the other players as your letters can be turned to ash just as quickly.  Start working on those pick-up lines, gentlemen.

The Tome of Blood is at your disposal, Lord Khorne.

The most recent hardcover edition to the Black Crusade line of Warhammer 40K RPG books details every tool you’ll need to praise the Blood God!  That includes four new Heretic archetypes, plus all the weapons, armaments, and Daemon Engines to empower them.  As another added bonus of pain and suffering, players of any alignment can develop Legacy Weapons and fight in Mass Combats.  Along with all this carnage comes new settings like the pits of Kurse, Furia’s savage oceans, Berin and Aspodel, as well as the War Moons of Talax.  Pile up those skulls, cause Khorne needs a seat.

Wallenstein is nothing like Frankenstein.  Word to the wise.

It is however very much like a good game.  This second edition of the game receives a rules touch up as well as the addition of two expansions for the game.  As players compete for points by controlling the largest amount of land and real estate, two years pass (don’t worry, in game time only) wherein shortages of food, peasant revolts, and any number of other hardships will beset your kingdom.  An interesting randomizing element is used to decide when and where these obstacles hit, that being a tower which you roll tokens down, some of which catch, some of which drop to the bottom.  These tokens then decide what happens where.  Players also carefully stratagize about how to use the action cards given them in order to obtain the most property.

Competing with Marvel’s Legacy Deck-Building Game, the new DC Deck Building Game lets players control one of seven famous DC characters.  That means you can be Batman.  Or Wonder Woman.  Or Green Lantern.  Each hero controls a special ability unique to them, giving them advantages toward certain card types.  Those other types include superpowers, heroes, villains, equipment, and locations.  During the game, each player vies cards which will assist their deck against the powers of the villains you all are fighting.  For instance, you might want to be bulletproof if you’re going up against Deathstroke.  Or have super speed if you need to race a bomb out into the ocean.  Basically, you get to play the comics you love.  Yeah, I’m picking up a copy, too.