Editorial: What Comics I Read This Week

This is a quick, to the point section on what I picked up in comics in the last couple days and what I think of them.

Uncanny X-Men #4

Avengers Arena #7

Writer: Dennis Hopeless
Artist: Alessandro Vitti
So how has Arcade gained super powers and forced these kids to kill each other?  This issue reveals how in a surprisingly entertaining, somewhat emotional look at Arcade’s past as a giant loser, laughingstock, and pitifully horrible human being.  I’m super surprised at how much I enjoyed this issue.  The answer to it all is ridiculously generic but the story telling is there.  Arcade is now a villain to me that I don’t know what to think about.Also a quick complaint that has nothing to do with the story and art: Marvel, why do I not get a free digital copy of this from my physical copy?  Fix it!  

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 9 #20

Writer: Brian Bendis
Artist: Yves Bigerel
This series is finally starting to get better.  This issue focuses almost entirely on Xander with some wonderful comedic relief via Andrew.  Unfortunately this issue also has the side effect of having me worry as to where its going to go.  This is primarily due to that they could ruin the greatness that is the Angel & Faith series.I’ve also decided reading the fan letters in these books is an absolute riot!  So many Spike fan boys and girls out there who want him to wind up with Buffy!

Injustice: Gods Among Us #13

Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Jheremy Raapack
Holy crap this series is so freaking good!  This issue focuses entirely on The Flash and his state of mind as he helps Superman and Wonder Woman police the world.  I just, seriously its like $0.99 on Comixology, just go buy them already!  This is a Kingdom Come or Red Son Superman quality comic. Granted its accelerating towards a non-ending but as a comic reader you should be used to things not ending.
Writer: Brian Bendis
Artist: Bachalo
Now we get to see another perspective on the conversation that happened last issue of All-New X-Men as well as who was recruited.  I had two guesses on the new recruit and one of them was correct.  The new cast of mutant teenagers are really likable characters so far.  Bendis writes teenagers really well.  Illyana is also turning out to be one of my favorite characters of the series.  She’s come a long way from a Colossus MacGuffin and it looks like the next story arc is going to surround her.  Very much looking forward to it.

Wolverine and the X-Men #1-3

Writer: Aaron
Artist: Bachalo
I think this series might have been built up a little too high for me.  I’ve heard it touted as the best X comic out there.  Unfortunately for it I now have Uncanny X-Men and All-New X-Men to compare it to.  It would probably help if I was familiar with any of the new students.  I should clarify, this book is a good book but it hasn’t won me over as the best.  The story starts out with Xavier walking (I must have missed something here) with Wolverine telling him how happy he was that Wolverine is starting a new school.  Xavier soon departs and hijinks ensue.  The appealing aspects of the series are the ever polite Brood student named Broo, the rebellious Kid Omega, and of course one of my favorite X-women Kitty Pryde.  The enemies of the first 3 issues appear to be a new teenage Hellfire Club.  I honestly wish they just wrote the story without an actual villain attacking the school.  There were so many scenes that could have been elaborated on if they just left those pages out.  But still enjoyed it.  Maybe in a week or two I’ll read the next few issues.

Spec Ops: The Line – PC

Spec Ops: The Line is an unremarkable shooter with a few interesting points.  I read recently that professionals write what they need to and hobbyists write what they want to.  The statement is true yet short sighted, much like this game.  I didn’t play the multiplayer and my criticism is only held towards the single player campaign.  Spec Ops: The Line isn’t a fun game, but the story has some interesting points that are undermined by plot holes and bad mechanics   And it does that thing I love where the opening screen is the starting shot of opening gameplay al la God War and Infamous.

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Videogame Review: Infamous 2 PS3

A large part of me simply wants to write “I love this game, end of review.”  But that would be wrong.  No I don’t know why it would be wrong but I’m sure someone somewhere wrote that reviews one sentence long are bad.  After all I’m sure you’ve come to hear good and bad stuff that might be labeled criticism either to reaffirm your desire to play this game or confirm your desire to leave this franchise alone.  First off, make sure you’ve played the original Infamous.  There’s a savegame import and a few of the decisions carry over.  Next ask yourself, did you like the first Infamous?  See the second game plays a whole lot like the first but better.  Think Assassin’s Creed 2 to Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood.  Or Fallout 3 to Fallout New Vegas.  Infamous 2 is an incredibly fun superhero city romp without the tights and a story that might bite you back.

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Book Review: Assassin’s Quest

Title: Assassin’s Quest (Book 3 of the Farseer Trilogy)
Author: Robin Hobb
Publisher: Bantam Spectra

To say that I’ve had a tough time reading Hobb’s Farseer Trilogy is a gross understatement, but the previous two books haven’t been bad by any means.  However, upon finishing the third book, Assassin’s Quest, I think I’ve come to terms with the trilogy.

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Videogame Review: Tactics Ogre Let Us Cling together PSP

Tactics Ogre Let Us Cling Together is a remake of the original, absurdly hard Tactics Ogre for the PSOne (Not to be confused with Tactics Ogre Knight of Lodis).  The remake is done by Yasumi Matsuno, the original creator of Tactics Ogre, Ogre Battle, and Final Fantasy Tactics.  On top of that, “Let Us Cling Together” is a reference to a song by Queen, Teo Torriatte (Let Us Cling Together).  The remake focuses on adding a degree of modern design to an old brutal game.  The Old Ways punished players with death.  The New Ways are much more forgiving while still delivering a challenging experience.  To say I’m considering buying this game flowers is an understatement for my love for this remake.

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Book Review: Royal Assassin

Title: Royal Assassin (Book 2 of the Farseer Trilogy)
Author: Robin Hobb
Publisher: Bantam Spectra

Royal Assassin continues Fitz’ story after the disastrous events of the first book.   Fitz, nearly crippled by the attacks at the end of his first job as an assassin, promises himself that he’ll never return home nor serve his king.  But confusing visions and outside forces bring Fitz to return home to a kingdom quickly falling apart, torn from within.  Read more of this post

Videogame Review: InFamous in Retrospect

InFamous came out in 2009 along side such giants as Batman Arkham Asylum, Uncharted 2, and Assassin’s Creed 2 and is a PS3 exclusive.  Its an easy game to overlook in a world where most people prefer the 360 over the PS3.  Stack that on top of a cross platform release of a game with a similar concept (open world super villain game) Prototype and it wouldn’t surprise me if you missed Infamous.

The strangest part for me about Infamous is how much I loved it when I played it and then how much I stopped caring about afterwards.  I started playing it again recently, going on an evil play through, and this game still blows me away which was entirely unexpected.  Many aspects of Infamous at release were ahead of its time and a lot of those aspects are still ahead of present games.  No start screen, it just loads, say what?  That’s c-ra-zy!

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A Temporary Chemical Imbalance caused by Poison Elves

I’d like to take some time now to talk about one of my favorite graphic novels series Poison Elves.  Poison Elves was created written and drawn by Drew Hayes and remained in indy status, published in black and white throughout the entirety of its run.  It began in 1991 as a self-published work under the Mulehide Graphics label and was titled I,Lusiphur, referring to the main character, a young (by elf standards) elf with a bad temper, a cynical disposition and knack for getting into trouble.  With issue #8 Hayes changed the title to Poison Elves and continued his direct market publishing.  In 1995 he signed a lifetime contract with Sirius Entertainment, the sometimes home of another favorite of mine Joseph Michael Linsner, the creator of Dawn. Read more of this post

360 Love – Stocking Stuffer Games

Here are 5 must own exclusive games for the 360 under $30 so they will all make a perfect gift!  Spoiler alert, for the downloadables go buy those discounted point cards from Amazon and Gamestop.

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PS3 love: Stocking Stuffer Games

For those PS3 owners and lovers out there, here’s five games that you should absolutely purchase this holiday season that are all $30 new or less.

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