WonderCon 2012 – DC The New 52 Panel

DC is on a hot streak after relaunching their brands with a fresh start in the world, the New 52 have taken the world by storm and this year we’ll see the introduction of 6 more titles. Here’s a quick breakdown for the returning franchises.

  • Batman Inc. returns with Grant Morrison at the helm
  • Earth 2 starts up with James Robinson
  • Worlds Finest kicks off thanks to Kevin Maguire
  • Dial H (for Hero) returns as well with China Miéville leading the way
  • GI Combat The war that time forgot runs with J.T. Krul
  • Ravagers steps it up with Ian Churchill after leading up fans with mentions in other comics

With that said we got a small dose of major releases coming up for 2012 from the New 52.

  • Batman – Bruce is set to turn the tables in a battle for Gotham against the court in a heated story shift. (Issue 9)
  • Swamp Thing – Anton Arcane returns, we start to develop background on the characters that we were not given before. The showdowns that occur from here out set up the Animal Man crossover coming soon.
  • Dark Knight – Greater challenges ahead for Batman, Greg Purwitz and Finch are going to raise the bar to super heights in details and complexity for the story. Few details other than a strong working bond between the writers.
  • Flash – Weather villain conflicts continue, we’ll see Heatwave strike soon and a new spin arrive in the next few issues leading to a bigger battle.
  • I Vampire – Justice League Dark crossover coming, Adam Bennet is dead at this point (whoops), as a result we’ll see stronger lead enemies coming forward in the story. Apocalypse level events start coming down on the world as things start brewing more, vampire hunters strike and then Zombies arrive. Yeah. Zombies. It’s a minefield of new story to read through and the final teaser of Stomwatch really set off the crowd.
  • Nightwing – The Night of Owls is coming, Gates of Gotham and Tomorrow People are all huge events about to hit Nightwing hard in the coming issues.
  • Superboy – Wonder Girl drama comes to a head, her long loooong lost flame still holds her heart in all of this. Those who think they know who it is are likely to be mistaken, even RR isn’t in the picture for candidates.
  • Teen Titans – Wonder Girl origins takes off, road trip to reveal so much about everyone involved. Those left at the HQ get hit with people questioning their ability to have powers at such an age and actively participate in crime fighting with their lives on the line.
  • Red Hood – Flight attendant meeting turns into a larger encounter in issue 2, Blackfire appears into the mix.
  • Suicide Squad – Hunt for Harley Quinn comes to an end, just as that wraps up they take on an immortal as one of their biggest challenges so far and take a step back to develop the stories on the whole group. New characters will join the mix and drama in the loyalties of the squad come into play.
  • DCU Presents – Vandal Savage line picks up by introducing his daughter into the story, a clash comes in trying to figure out what side he rests on and the history of his ways and kills over such a massive span of history. Father daughter tensions rise up in this chapter.
  • Captain Atom – power is on the rise in his head, the issue of the messiah complex comes into play and his alternate selves start coming into the picture.

The panel touched on a little bit of everything and the panelists tried their hardest to deliver a solid impression of what’s coming up with the new series items and the changes in store with the relaunched books.

Spartacus: Vengeance sneak peek plus video preview

Spartacus Vengeance is on the verge of  return, the show comes back in just about 7 weeks, to prepare for that we’ve gotten a small look at the opener for the show with Liam McIntyre as the lead. For those who hate spoilers, just stop now as we might blow something key for you guys.

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Our scene opens with speared horsemen and a dual sworded Spartacus leading them down a trail, we get a graphic showing of his prowess for combat, the calculations in how he handles his surroundings and his toughness. As his allied team emerges from behind the rocks it becomes a ballet of brutal engagement with he and his followers carefully tackling the entire group. We see the numbers growing and Spartacus throwing himself into the front line to protect his men and destroy the odds, each strike and enemy taken down with sheer force. The intensity the show brings is just as strong as ever, the story though, has a new path to expand his world.

 

Visually it’s a series of struggle and drama, his men are battered and tired but willing and Spartacus is fighting with it all on the line, no injury is too much as he executes each opponent. The camera team showcases critical strikes and dominance in slow motion cuts from both sides in the heated exchange.

The scene sets the tempo for what Spartacus is up against, he has strength and courage but his power also rests in the loyalty and numbers of his team. We’re teased that Spartacus will take notice and become emotionally aware of the death that follows with such a campaign that he’s leading. Liam McIntyre feels passionate about the character development coming to the season and the potential for viewers.

Update: The Hollywood Reporter is linking the video publicly so we’ll pass it along too

Batman Arkham City arrives for a 30 min demo on OnLive

Are you a PC gamer eager to check out Arkham City but lacking in funds or skeptical about the new game itself? OnLive is doing a free 30min demo of the full game through their network to promote the launch of the game. If you’re in the UK you can get in on a demo 3 days early before the game releases over there!

Normally I don’t do streaming games, I did give the OnLive trial a spin, the visuals were moderate for the game and the resolution was fixed most likely for optimal speed. Audio was solid and the only issue was that traffic spikes had the scenes stuttering about 8 times in the 30 minutes of gaming. Nothing game breaking, one of the skips hit in the middle of a fight sequence which led to a missed combination and counter opportunity. Overall the performance and resolution were acceptable and it gives you a free amount of time to see how far you can get. Optionally after that point if you’re satisfied you can buy the game right there and continue fighting it out.

For the time spent and the ease of use I was tempted to just buy it there and keep rolling though, a first given I usually just buy titles through Steam.

For more information and to sign up check out http://www.onlive.com or http://www.onlive.co.uk

Preview – Serious Sam: The Random Encounter

Developer: Vlambeer
Publisher: Devolver Digital
Pixel Art: Roy De Groot
Sound: Alex Maur

Serious Sam 3 is coming, to celebrate this legendary event, we’re getting 3 games to lead up to the release date. Serious Sam: The Random Encounter is the last chapter of this magical saga, bringing JRPG elements to the franchise while keeping the foundation alive. Admittedly, Vlambeer says they know nothing about J-RPG’s so it’s just a bunch of shooting everything in the face which is fine by me, the world could use a little more shooting things in the face in gaming instead of whatever it is they’re doing. I was able to sit down for an hour with the preview build and find out how entertaining old school face blasting could be again.

Jumping into the game I fell into a sense of nostalgia, most likely because my 1920×1200 screen was glowing in 8-bit pixel gaming love and amazing music. For retro fans alone, this is a game to look into as it captures the unique style of the era while mocking so many horrible faults of the genre. Sam and crew (yes crew) even go so far as to engage in deep puzzle levels taxing players to the limit, at least it taxes their weapons to the limit I should say. Mass swarms are found every time Sam and company walk into a random encounter situation, they do get harder and they do have a variety of attacks that can leave members dead or ineffective.

Like a traditional J-RPG there are menus and options, generally you find yourself picking if you want the big gun the bigger gun or the biggest gun and even with that awesome potential you have issues. Rockets are epic but if you have a group of foolish enemies crowded in front of you, they’ll eat them all and you will have no extra ammo for strays until the next choice. Sometimes, the simplest weapons like the revolver will prove the most effective in sticky situations, trying to expect those will be critical in the game to survive.

The art in the game is amazing, not only is it 8-bit themed but it takes on a 70’s badass vibe as your fellow face shooters pack Afros and burly mustaches, it has been a while since I thought something was so purely brutal and The Random Encounter gets it done with ease.

The game will release soon on October 24th via Steam with a price tag of $4.99. We’ll try to have a final verdict out when it goes live.

San Diego Comic-Con 2010 – Preview night shots

Hey guys just coming in with the first batch of pictures from the show this year, from toys to cosplay to just cool stuff. We’re checking out panels and more this year, come back nightly for gallery updates and any panel coverage we can crank out after a long day of travel to SD.

Enjoy!

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Listed: Green Hornet Car, Gundam Models, Iron Man Suits, Rogue, Black Cat, White Phoenix, Dark Phoenix, Scarlet Witch, Michael Jackson, Batman Begins movie costume, Gargoyles figure, Toy Story Lego sculpture, Eva 01, Gurren Lagann, Avatar Mecha, Fox booth girls, Green Hornet booth girls, Mazinger Z, Batman Black and White, Storm Shadow, Snake Eyes, The Last Airbender figures, Thor Display at Marvel, One Piece, GI Joe figures