My brother and I have always been avid players of the Smash Brothers franchise, so as soon as Project M was announced, we knew we had to conquer it.
Super Smash Brothers Brawl: Project M
We all know the Smash Brothers series; a crossover fighting game featuring the loveable characters from various Nintendo titles, Pokemon games, and even Sega. The franchise has been around since the N64 and sparked two sequels (Melee, on the Gamecube; Brawl, on the Wii) where even more characters join in on the fun. This was a fantastic game to bring out at parties and casual hang-outs where you could compete with your friends using some of the most recognizable video game faces in the world, and calling it anything less than ‘amazing’ would be an understatement.
There is an ongoing debate regarding which Smash Brothers game reigns supreme, and you will find many die-hard Melee fans who insist Brawl took away everything that made the game entertaining. This group of people who keep their Gamecube in pristine condition just so they can enjoy Melee on a daily basis is probably the reason a bunch of hackers banned together to tear Brawl’s programming apart and alter it to make it similar to its predecessor.
Project M is the new mod for Smash Bros. Brawl that is completely free to download and play on your Wii system. It hasn’t been around that long, yet has already sparked quite the following. It’s been said that Project M has replaced some of the worst aspects of Brawl with the best of Melee; so, naturally, my brother and I had to find out for ourselves whether or not we agreed with the masses.
With AvX in full swing and the New 52’s last week of the month upon us, I find myself being rather picky this week with my must buy list.
So you are going to buy anything this week make sure you buy Daredevil # 11
The first part of this crossover was my pick two weeks ago and it should come as no surprise that I loved this issue just as much seeing as how it featured the same creative team. I want to applaud Marco Chechetto for successfully putting out not only three issues in one month but three gorgeous issues in three consecutive weeks. Mark Waid’s dialogue is sharp and the pace is great as always including yet another great moment describing motivation this time coming from Daredevil. My only two issues with this book are that not much seemed to change from the start and apparently S.H.I.E.L.D exists again despite not being addressed in any of the other books. Despite these flaws, this was a fantastic end to an incredible crossover and if you skipped it last time, you really should reconsider.
A few weeks ago I had the distinct privilege to meet artist John Tyler Christopher at Conglomeration in Louisville, KY. Despite being swarmed by fans and signing autographs, he was gracious enough to grant me an interview. John is most known for his work with Marvel and Witchblade. You can check out some of his work for yourself at his DeviantArt page.
John is the sitting on the right, on the left is Sean Fannon and his wife, of sites such as DrivethruRPG and RPGnow. These sites have revolutionized the RPG world. Sean joined our interview about halfway though, but this post will stay focused on John. (The Joint interview will be posted later this week)
Shawn: How long have you been an artist? Did this start out in grade school or high school?
John Tyler Christopher: Dude I’ve been drawing since I could pick up a pencil. It’s my passion. When I was a kid I actually used to draw monsters. And still to this day, I’m still a huge fan of monsters and creatures.
Happy birthday to two of our favorite Batman rouges! The Joker and Catwoman (a.k.a. Selina Kyle). Both turn a golden 72 years old today, and dare I say neither look a day past 25 (though to be honest its hard to tell with Joker).
With a definite blockbuster movie coming out this summer , I decided to read the book its based off of, to (Hopefully) get a feel for what the movie will be like. Written by Seth Grahame-Smith, who (by the way) also wrote the screen play for the movie, has done one of the best jobs of Fictionary that I’ve read quite possibly… ever. For those who don’t know what fictionary is, it is the use of historical facts and information to tell a fictitious story. Popular examples are the books/movies The Da Vinci Code and Angel and Demons. Smith has done even better than those two books, combined. Its clear that Smith took a very long time to study Lincoln and American History, just to begin even writing this tale. Interested? The Bottom line this book was awesome! You can nab yourself a copy Here!
Not convinced yet?
Welcome to the world of Disgaea; where demons reign supreme and penguins explode.
Disgaea: Hour of Darkness (IGN’s rating: 9.4/10)
Disgaea 4: A Promise Unforgotten (IGN’s rating: 8.5/10)
If you’ve ever planned on picking up any of the four main Disgaea games, let me be the first to prepare you for what you would be in for. Disgaea is a charming little series created by Nippon Ichi with an essence all its own; each game plays out the way your typical Japanese Anime does. There are individual “episodes” to complete, and, before and after each one, many cutscenes ensue in which the characters exchange comedic dialogue (usually breaking the fourth wall in the process). Every Disgaea story is different — the sequels do not continue the storyline of the game preceeding it. This makes it possible for you to pick up any one of them and play it as if it were its own stand-alone.
The battle system is very Final Fantasy Tactics-esque, but there are a few unique qualities Disgaea posesses that make it stand out.
Last week I posted my favorite book of the week as well as why I enjoyed it, this week I planned on doing the same until I realized…a lot of fantastic books came out this week. As a result I will share a few of my favorites and provide some insight as to why you should buy them.
My first pick of the week is Batman # 8
So last week Nickelodeon aired the sequel to one of their most popular and successful cartoon series ever made, Avatar: The last Airbender. The sequel titled The Legend of Korra follows the Avatar that comes after Ang named Korra. She is a water tribe member that lives in the world of Avatar roughly eighty years after the original series takes place.
That’s the major background that you need to know, now on to the actual story which is brilliant. Many of the same writers, artists, and others originally involved with the original series are back, and they’ve recaptured the feel and the essence of the original series. Only this time the story is a bit more geared towards teenagers and young adults; that’s not to say that younger kids won’t watch it, but with the original series fans now in their early teens and young adult-hood its a good move. Korra, a feisty impetuous sixteen year old, has been able to bend three of the four elements sense she was a toddler (water, earth, and fire) but air has alluded her and thus the current air bending master, the son of Ang and Katara, must train her to bend. That’s where things get troublesome. Korra is all brawn and no spirit and wind bending is the most spiritual of all the elements so the mastery of it is going to take a lot of time leading to frustration on the part of both Korra and master Tosin.
While she learns to master air, Korra lives in Republic City, which was founded by Ang and Zuko. Republic City, has fallen into a state that more or less reflects the society of New York in the twenties and thirties, with hooligans and gangs running wild and extorting money from people and causing trouble. Other similarities to the twenties and thirties is the introduction of cars, radios, and electricity not to mention hints in the way people dress in the city. The city is in shadowy chaos as an anti-bender revolution lead by a shady character is gaining power and popularity, but oddly one of the most popular things of the era is pro-bending.
Pro-bending appears to be a central figure in the story, and the idea of pro-bending is genius. Think dodge ball crossed with bending, with a few other rules thrown in, and you have pro-bending. Each side being a three man squad of fire, earth, and water benders trying to knock all the other players off the end of the platform on the opposing side. This game will be the source of friends, trials, and training epiphanies. The story appears as if it will revolve around this new and exciting sport.
In the end if you where a fan of the original series then watch this one. Come to see what happened with the original gang and how the world has changed in the eighty years since their adventures, stay for the great new story and awesome new characters.
If you would like to check out the original Avatar series you can find it Here
Admit it, we’ve all got that one song on our iPod, or that one movie in our collection that we love, but know in our heart of hearts that it just… isn’t… good.
That being said, allow me to introduce you to the wonderfully god-awful game that I have happily displayed upon my gaming shelf.
IGN’s rating: 7 out of 10
Welcome to the droll town of Monsbaiya. It is right smack dab in the middle of a desert, and the only action the residents ever see usually comes from the large, intimidating tower here infested with monsters born of three different elements: wind, water, and fire. Should you venture inside and steal an egg that one of these hideous creatures has left behind, you can take it home, hatch it, and raise it as your familiar so that you are annointed the title of ‘Monster Tamer’.
So with the news coming out of C2E2 we have more info on whats up for the Cajun card player. The book will be written by James Asmus, who has been involved in the X-Men’s lives for some time now. He’s had his hand such titles as Uncanny X-Men, Astonishing X-Men, Dark X-Men, as well as Generation Hope. He’s revealed that the story line will revolve around aspects of Gambits roots, aka his thieving (as we guessed). It’s not going to be necessarily about regaining his crown, not yet at least, but more about a heist that causes extraneous circumstances about the object he steals and the possible powers it holds. We’ll get to see Gambit globe hop meeting with different heroes and organizations, sometimes working with them and sometimes against them as he deals with with things that are happening to him and those around him. New characters will be introduced including both Gambits fence man (the guy who sells the stolen goods) and a female thief that is a bit of Gambit’s opposite in personality, that Gambit will have a tenuous relationship with possibly teaming up to steal and fight the “bad guys.”
The artist is Clay Mann, the man partially responsible for the fantastic and intriguing redesigns of many classic X-Men during the Age of X arc that occurred a few years back and other permanent redesigns such as Rogue that have been popping up through out the X-Men teams. Gambit hasn’t escaped tweaking either, gone are the red/pink shirt and black mask, and in are more hushed tones of purple and black with free flying hair. Happily the trench coat and playing cards are still there in their iconic glory. We have to wait four months still, but I’m already salivating for this new book from Marvel.
Thanks to CBR for this pic.
First of all I just wanted to express how much I loved this arc. After the somewhat dry (yet nevertheless curious) tabula rasa arc it was a welcome change of pace and action driven interlude. As well as a smart prologue to the upcoming Avengers versus X-Men event. When reading this I couldn’t help but keep thinking THIS is the X-Men I remember as a kid, seeing the Extinction team teleport into battle was a breathtaking panel, mutants (looking awesome by the way) descending into battle like demigods about to shock the world with awe and wonder as they take on yet another larger than life mission. Gillen knows what he’s doing, and you have to appreciate how he’s masterfully weaved both plot and theme in the last few issues. Both come to a head in this last arc and I have to say it has me excited for what’s in store. I love that he’s dealt with the issue of very unique species which serve as a foil to the X-Men and their predicament
We had Sinister shown as the systematized, species of one, a phalanx of one, and the Apex, a highly evolved and intelligence race from a self evolved habitat, inadvertently endangered by their less evolved neighbours. I couldn’t help but recall Good Apex’s words of warning to Storm, the moral compass of the Extinction team “Some costs aren’t worth paying” When storm told him she understood he was relieved and said he would fear for them if they didn’t. The X-Men are in an interesting situation, they want to save the world , that is currently at unease about their existence. I love that the new Uncanny Volume has tackled this realpolitik dilemma facing Scott’s Utopia. There are so many real world analogues we can compare this too. Particularly with respect to inter-state aggression, weapons of mass destruction and conflict escalation.
I remember how disconcerted I was after reading Scott’s letter to humanity after issue one, and this last arc had me wondering how far Scott was willing to save mutantkind especially after the sentiment was raised so cleverly in the tabula rasa arc. It’s your textbook case Identity Conflict. The mutants are fighting for their survival, a survival that has been ideologically wrapped up in the existence of the Mutant Messiah Hope Summers. If the continued survival of mutantkind required the extinction of humanity (something that’s implied with the impending threat of the phoenix force) where do the X-Men’s actions (assuming all of them will defend hope) fall ethically? Such a delicious dilemma.
- Do not wait until your turn to start planning movements. Most tabletop games can last anywhere from 3 to 6 hours. Spending even an extra 5 mins during your turn can really add up.
- Don’t touch another players’ dice. Tabletop gamers have a tendency to be protective and superstitious about their dice. Even if given the OK angry players will claim you cursed their dice by using all the good rolls. Come prepared, if you are playing swarm armies bring adequate amounts of dice.
- Don’t be a douche about line of site rules, you know who you are. If you are the type of guy that pulls out his laser pointer every time you try to line up shots, this gives the opposing player good reason to go Half-life on your head with a crowbar. (This goes especially for you Tau Players!)
- Never pick up another players’ models without permission. Players spend a lot of time on their armies with expansive paint jobs and modifications. Even if it isn’t your fault loss of a body part can quickly devolve a game into petty arguing.
- Don’t give up even when your defeat is inevitable. Some players quit as soon as they assume they are going to lose, this takes the fun away from the game for both players. Play the game though, the idea is to have fun, winning is cool but not exactly necessary.
Once again my ravenous hunger for books has devoured another one. This time it is Doctor Who: The Last Dodo written by Jacqueline Rayner. This book fallows the Tenth Doctor better known as David Tennant’s portrayal of him, with companion Martha alongside him. Warning: this book is ten times better if you’ve seen the seasons with David Tennant and Martha because you can hear and see the Doctor and Martha and have a better idea of his quirks and mannerisms that don’t seem to come across well in the book. This by no means that the story is horrible and it is bad writing, quite the opposite actually. The book reads almost like an episode of Doctor Who, with twists, turns, and other wibbly wobbly timey wimey circumstances.
The Doctor and Martha land on a planet that is a large natural history museum for various endangered species of Earth, as well as several other planets. The only difference from an Earth museum is that all the animals are alive in stasis boxes. And what’s the problem that the Doctor finds himself in the middle of? Exhibits are being stolen, and no one knows by whom. The Doctor and Martha then jump in head first, or as it seems to usually happen, are pushed in head first. Earth seems to be thirty to forty years further along than we are now, which means more animal species are extinct in this era, and thus the museum “curators” are constantly popping over there to retrieve the last of the dying species, which means a good part of the story involves Earth (doesn’t it always though?). The story both is intriguing yet brings up the issue of species preservation tactfully; it also plants the idea in your mind and makes you want to be more proactive about it. Overall, the book is good for the average reader, but great for those who have watched and loved the series.
Now go and your copy of it and others of the series Here!
P.S. For all you comic book fans there is a current crossover of Dr. Who and Star Trek aka Cybermen vs. Borg. Check it out!