George R.R. Martin Posts New Excerpt From The Winds of Winter

Posted by Ben Huber on Apr 4, 2015 in Television

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If you’re painfully waiting for the new A Song of Ice and Fire book, the Winds of Winter, author George R.R. Martin is here to ease your pain ever so slightly. Martin has taken to often posting a few chapters while he spends much time writing the next book, as a way to placate the masses. And hey, it’s nice to get updates on the story so far. This new excerpt is an “Alayne” chapter, so if you haven’t read all the current books and don’t know who that is, proceed no further! Martin says he has canceled several convention appearances to work on the book in hopes of finishing it… sooner or later. The fifth season of the HBO TV series Game of Thrones begins April 12th. Read more…

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Disney’s Live-Action Cinderella Trailer Actually Looks Alright

Posted by Bob Muir on Nov 20, 2014 in Cinema

Cinderella

Disney has been raiding the Disney Vault for classic animated movies that can be remade into live-action features. After Alice in Wonderland and Maleficent, the next up is Cinderella. I’m of the opinion that these effects-driven movies are just cashing in on the original story and are completely unnecessary. But while the last two films just looked awful from the start, Cinderella actually looks alright. There isn’t visual overload and it just seems like a retelling of the classic fairy tale. It’s still completely unnecessary, but maybe this movie has a chance of being a good movie. Despite my distaste for director Kenneth Branagh, his Shakespearean sensibilities seem to be a good fit. And with Helena Bonham Carter cast as a non-crazy person, plus Cate Blanchett, they’ve got some good actors participating. Read more…

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An Epic Retelling Of How The WiFi Was Fixed

Posted by Bob Muir on Mar 13, 2014 in Tech

Ballad of a WiFi Hero

Since moving across the country, the requests to fix my parents tech problems have been drastically reduced. Still, I can only imagine how frustrating it is for them to have a problem and have no idea what is causing it. Mike Lacher has explored this in a piece for New York Magazine, and now it has been animated with narration by H. Jon Benjamin (Archer, Bob’s Burgers). When an old couple’s WiFi breaks, it’s up to the son-in-law to fix it. It’s a straightforward story told with all the bombast of an epic quest in ye olden days. I bet this is how my parents viewed it when I taught them to just restart their computer. Read more…

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Yasumi Matsuno’s Next Game Is Unsung Story, Posted On Kickstarter

Posted by Bob Muir on Jan 15, 2014 in Videogames

Unsung Story: Tales of the Guardians

Yasumi Matsuno has made some of the best strategy RPGs, like Ogre Battle and Final Fantasy Tactics. He’s since left Square Enix and gone freelance for almost a decade, but he’s ready to reveal his latest game. Unsung Story: Tale of the Guardians is another medieval strategy game inspired by some of his earlier work. You’ll play as several heroes as they take part in the “Seventy-Seven Years War” in the land of Rasfalia, with each hero getting their own episode. The title is being made by American developer Playdek and is planned for PC, Mac, iOS, Android, and Windows tablets. The game is being posted on Kickstarter, so it will have to meet its minimum funding goal. Two of the stretch goals, however, will add PS Vita and 3DS versions to the development schedule, so you have the option to play it on more systems. Other stretch goals include additional scenarios, voice-overs, and a soundtrack composed by Hitoshi Sakamoto, who has scored some of Matsuno’s past games. I’m interested because of Matsuno, but I have to point out that the game has one of the most generic fantasy titles ever. Read more…

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Capcom’s Deep Down Looks Deliciously Dark And Dangerous

Posted by Bob Muir on Sep 11, 2013 in Videogames

Deep Down

Deep Down‘s name sounds a bit awkward, like other Capcom games such as Resident Evil. But watching this trailer, the name really fits, evoking a sense of dread as you explore areas deep below the Earth’s surface. Many are noting that it seems to take the oppressive atmosphere of From Software’s Dark Souls while mixing in a sci-fi future concept of exploring past memories, a framework used in Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed series. The result is this trailer that has practically sold me on the PS4 exclusive. Admittedly, there still isn’t much concrete information on Deep Down‘s plot, gameplay, or release date, so there’s plenty of time for expectations to fall as more details come to light. But for now, consider me excited. Read more…

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Artemis Fowl To Be Adapted For Film

Posted by Bob Muir on Jul 30, 2013 in Cinema

Artemis Fowl

Where to go now that the Harry Potter films are finished? There’s a gap that studios are trying to fill with other book-to-film adaptations like Percy Jackson. Cue a press release from Disney: they’ll be adapting Eoin Cofler’s Artemis Fowl series — specifically the first two books — into a movie. The first book’s story involves the titular character, a genius, billionaire, and criminal, kidnapping a fairy and dealing with the results. The script is coming from Michael Goldenberg, who also wrote the script for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix; he managed to take the slowest and most bloated Harry Potter book and turn it into a solid film, so that’s a good sign. Robert DeNiro and Jane Rosenthal will executive produce the film. Read more…

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Capcom Releasing Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen Expansion

Posted by Bob Muir on Mar 14, 2013 in Videogames

Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen

Dragon’s Dogma did better than Capcom expected it to, being released to favorable reviews and sales figures. Naturally, being a success these days usually translates to more content. There have been a few smaller packs of downloadable content, but now Capcom is rereleasing the game as Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen. Read more…

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A Game of Thrones Finale Review: OMGWTFCoK!

Posted by Gia Manry on Jun 20, 2011 in Fandom, Television

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HBO aired the last episode of its adaptation of Game of Thrones, the first book in George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire, last night, and by and large the response is: OMGWTFCoK! CoK, of course, referring to A Clash of Kings— the second book in the series, which HBO will also adapt. And which everyone who watched all of Game of Thrones is now salivating for (even if they already read the novels).

But before we get too excited for the second season, which hasn’t even been slated for broadcast yet, let’s talk about what HBO did right (and wrong) with the series so far. (Spoilers: they did almost everything right.) Read more…

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A Weekend at Scarborough Faire

Posted by Gia Manry on May 23, 2011 in Fandom

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My parents are nerds, but they’ve never been the dress-up kind (not including that one Star Trek-themed murder mystery dinner party they went to, shocking me by renting very nice Next Generation outfits). However, this never stopped them from taking my brother, me, and occasionally our friends to our nearest Renaissance Faire for many years. The Faire took place in the Blackpoint Forest in Novato, California, for some years…until the land was sold and it had to relocate to— I kid you not —what was essentially the enormous parking lot of The Nut Tree, the “legendary” road stop in Vacaville, CA. The first year it was held there was the last year I remember going, although the faire continues to this day (now held at the Casa de Fruta, a similarly large truck stop in— *shudder* —Hollister, CA). Read more…

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Yamato x Luis Royo’s Ritual PVC is a Thing of Beauty

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Apr 6, 2011 in Hobbies and Collections

Yamato Ritual PVC 2

When it comes to PVC figurines, Yamato Co. is among Japan’s best. It’s no wonder that famed-artist Luis Royo trusts them to produce these stunning PVC recreations based on his art. Many of you may recognize Royo’s work from the covers of the 90’s Pocket Books Star Trek novels, Ultra X-Men, Heavy Metal magazine and more. In order to accurately capture the unique aspects of his dark, wonderous, and often exotic creations, few studios would be able to produce a sculpt with such detail, and Yamato certainly fits that bill. 

Read more…

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Don Ivan Punchatz: The Realistic Look of Magic

Posted by Michael Pinto on Oct 29, 2009 in Pulp Fiction, Videogames

Don Ivan Punchatz: Illustrator of the first Doom package

If you came of age reading science fiction in the late 60s, 70s or 80s you may have come across the illustrations of Don Ivan Punchatz who sadly just passed away. Punchatz’s illustrations were best known in the fantasy and science fiction genres and graced quite a few paperbacks, although his work covered other genres and he even did a cover or two for Time magazine (which is as good as you can get). Videogame fanboys however might best know him for his package art for the original Doom game (shown above), although his paperback cover art for the Isaac Asimov Foundation triology was my first encounter with his artwork: Read more…

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