Mars Attacks… The Dice Game!

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Steve Jackson Games has been churning out a lot of exciting games lately, and I was really looking forward toward their take on Mars Attacks in the form of a dice game. I finally got my greasy mitts on a copy of the game, so let’s check it out!

I must admit that I haven’t played many dice games, not even the kind at bars where you try to get shots. However, I like Mars Attacks and I’ve been wanting to play a game that’s quick and fun, since lately the games I’ve been getting into are several hour investiments that consists of dozens of pieces. Mars Attacks the Dice Game fits the bill by only having a few components. First you have the dice that have nifty ray guns, martian heads, and nuclear symbols on them. There’s 10 total.

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The second component of the game are cards. One card sets the “difficulty” level of the game, while the others represent the monuments and the cities that the Martians are going to take over. You set out a pile of four stacks of cards and each player has a chance at acquiring them through their dice roles. Each card is worth a certain amount of points on their way towards Martian glory. Some cities/monuments have special rules associated with them, like they’re harder to get or they give the person who gets it a special bonus. Most of them don’t have a bonus, just points towards victory.



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Bruce Campbell Will Continue to Battle Deadites on New “Evil Dead” TV Show

Bruce Campbell as Ash in The Evil Dead II

The news just broke that director Sam Raimi, producer Rob Tapert and star Bruce Campbell from “The Evil Dead” trilogy will reunite to create a TV continuation of the story. Starz picked the show up straight-to-series with a 10 episode order. Bruce Campbell will star as Ash, the unlikely hero who battles the titular Evil Dead and Raimi will direct the first episode. The show will premier in 2015 and the show will be titled “Ash vs. the Evil Dead.”

Bruce Campbell as Ash in Army of Darkness

Ash was the sole survivor of The Evil Dead which was semi-remade/semi-sequelized in The Evil Dead II where he became a bit more of a bumbler but battled even bigger forces. He was transported back to the medieval ages to once again battle the forces of the dead in Army of Darkness. Most recently, the series received a light reboot with director Fede Alvarez’ Evil Dead movie which had a post-credit scene teasing Ash’s return. Since Army of Darkness came out in 1991, fans of the films and filmmakers (they go hand in hand with the majority of fandom) figured we were unlikely to see the 56-year old Bruce Campbell play Ash once more. But it’s happening. Raimi previously teased the idea of a future Evil Dead film teaming up Ash with Mia from the 2013 film.

Bruce Campbell as Ash in The Evil Dead

It seemed unlikely for the childhood friends Raimi and Campbell to reunite for another Evil Dead after their careers took off separate from one another. Raimi became well-known for the Spider-Man trilogy and the recent Oz movie and Campbell played ex-spy Sam Axe for 7 seasons on the USA Network’s popular Burn Notice tv show. But now it’s happening. Thanks Starz!

Remembering Comic Book Creator Jeremy Dale

Jeremy Dale, at a comic convention (where else?)

Jeremy Dale, at a comic convention (where else?)

On the night of November 3rd, the world suddenly lost Jeremy Dale. He was only 35 but was already a beloved comic book illustrator and writer for many. He leaves behind his wife, Kelly, who helped manage his career and frequently assisted on his books with colors, letters, and edits. He also leaves his burgeoning fantasy opus, Skyward, unfinished. But he left behind a lot of stories worth reading.

I met Jeremy online in 1998 or so and we would chat late into the night online about art, comics and whatever else. Jeremy was very hard working and creative but was also incredibly friendly and very funny. He was also a fixture at the big comic conventions and comic stores, selling his self-published books and sketches. He touched a lot of lives in the relatively short time he was with us.

Here is a semi-complete list of his works and where you can find them. If you were a fan and wish to help with the medical and funeral expenses that appeared so suddenly and unexpectedly, you can donate here.

Trust by Jeremy Dale

Trust by Jeremy Dale

Jeremy was creating comics back in high school and college, such as Thin Cage, but his first self-published comics available to the public were issues 1 through 6 of Trust, about college student Johnny Havoc learning a mystery about his parents that sends him into the world of spies and ninjas. I remember drawing his ninja, Shadowbolt, which was printed in one of the issues, which were printed from 2003-2004. They were self-printed and assembled so only a small handful of each issue exists. You’d have to find them from someone who already has one, unless they are reprinted at some point in the future.

Absolute Zeroes by Jeremy Dale

Absolute Zeroes by Jeremy Dale

From 2005-2006, Jeremy published Absolute Zeroes #1-3, about a brother and sister superhero duo who were trying to replace Chicago’s greatest hero. It was a bit funnier and it featured superheroes, two things Jeremy loved. They should still be available through Jeremy’s old site, here. It was during this time that Jeremy got some small gigs with larger publishers, doing work for hire. He did a backup story in Image’s Wildguard: Fool’s Gold and City of Heroes #5 by Devil’s Due. Also in this time, Jeremy created a 24-hour comic called Storytellers.

GI Joe cover by Jeremy Dale

GI Joe cover by Jeremy Dale

2007 was a busy year for Jeremy, as he contributed to the Hurricane Katrina relief book HOPE: New Orleans and also Image’s new anthology series, Popgun vol. 1. He was also recruited by Hasbro to begin illustrating G.I. Joe comics written by Larry Hama, who has written the vast majority of all Joe books as well as creating the bios for most of the figures. They were released in 2008 as part of Hasbro’s 25th anniversary line. Popgun can be found in many comic stores and here on amazon. The GI Joe comics come with the 25th anniversary figures so they can frequently be found at pop culture stores and eBay.

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In 2008, Jeremy illustrated the title Miserable Dastards, about the goons that are hired to work for supervillains. This is a comic you can still buy digitally, here on Comixology. Jeremy also kept himself busy with other work-for-hire projects including NFL Rush Zone.

Skyward by Jeremy Dale

Skyward by Jeremy Dale

Ultimately, Jeremy may end up being best-remembered for his all-ages epic fantasy book Skyward. It was a massive success when he gave away an issue for Free Comic Book Day in 2013 and decided to make it an ongoing book. There were 9 issues published before his untimely demise. You can find copies of Skyward, original art and sketchbooks at Jeremy’s online store: http://jeremydale.bigcartel.com/products. I highly recommend it.

Horror Month Finale: Alien

Today’s review is about Alien, arguably the best blending of sci-fi and horror on film ever. It comes to us from Abed Gheith, a TV writer who most recently was a staff writer on the Rixty Minutes episode of Rick and Morty.

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Okay, it’s 1979. Your best friend drags you to the movies. But, they get tied up with something or other, and can’t join you. You’re alone. But it’s okay, it’s a science fiction movie, how scary could it really be? What you are about to witness is a human experiment in outer space terror. Can you imagine walking out of that theater as the same person who went in? And the way it builds; at first, just your average space team, on a mission. Seems fine. But then, just when you think it can’t get any more boring (working in space) a few daring bravados decide to mess with nature. And we’re not talking eating poisonous mushrooms here. It’s more like the equivalent of what eating poisonous mushrooms in Hades must be like.

Alien movie poster

Alien is one of those movies that really scared me as a child. I watched it with my Mom. She told me seeing it in the theaters when she was younger was quite terrifying. That is true terror. Going into a movie not knowing what to expect, and to be psychologically terrified. Giving us nightmares, and haunting the imagination (day dreams). If you think about it, it’s really hard to make space scary. I mean very few of us have actually tried space exploration. How would an astronaut react to seeing Alien for the first time? I’m sure it’s the same way a surfer would feel going to see Jaws.

John Hurt in Alien

Let’s get to the monster. And that’s one thing I think modern horror movies have lost. The classic scary guy; like Dracula, or Arrrrrrrhh from Frankenstein. A foe that you have to fight, and rather than a screamy/scaredy-cat girl running from the Freddy or the Jason, we have Ripley. She may be very afraid. But she’s a survivor, and this movie turns her into a bad ass. Much in the way that Ash changes from the loveable witty goofball into a problem solver with a chainsaw hand. There’s an unlikely hero, who must stand up to the overwhelming terror. And guess what? Everybody else is dead. She’s on her own. Which is why it’s best to see these kinds of movies alone. We must go along with Ripley into the very heart of fear. Most people think of it as science fiction, but to me, Alien is the best kind of horror. Facing the fear of the unknown, on your own.

The crew of the Nostromo in Alien

And when you’re alone in space, no one can hear you scream, “Mommy.”

The monster in Alien

Horror Month Day 23: Let the Right One In

This guest review is about the unique vampire movie Let the Right One in and comes to us from Katy Evans. Katy Evans is a writer, community advocate, Tacoma obsessive, and avid consumer of television and cocktails. Find more writing at postdefiance.com and follow her at @katynicoud

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Scary movies and horror movies have always fascinated and repelled me. Which is exactly their point, right?

I gravitate to the magicky/ghosty/demon/exorcism/wierding side of horror and, try as I might, really haven’t been able to build up a tolerance to slasher films. (Confession, I have never made it all the way through the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre. It is seriously the scariest 45 minutes of pop culture I’ve ever attempted to endure.)

I also often prefer a non-American perspective. The Guillermo del Toro-style ghost stories, some of the more stomach-curdling french horror (the murdery lady-style ones, not the rapey ones) and of course, the Nordic perspective that brought us the stunning Let the Right One In are my real jam.

In fact, Let the Right One In continues to be not only my favorite horror movie, it’s also my favorite movie of, oh, the last 10 years. So for this contribution to the Robot’s Pajamas horror pantheon, here’s my love letter to Eli and Oskar.

Let the Right One In movie poster



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Horror Month Day 22, Part 3: Shaun of the Dead

Today’s guest review is all about Shaun of the Dead, a British comedy horror released in 2004. Freelance writer Dave Parrack, who can be reached via his About.me page, adores this film so much he agreed to wax lyrical about it for the next eight paragraphs.

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I have never really been a fan of horror movies. All through my childhood, my dad would watch the scariest horror flicks released through the 80s and 90s, and I just didn’t understand the appeal. And then I became an adult, and that indifference continued. At least it did until Shaun of the Dead hit theaters.

Here was a comedy horror written and directed by Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg, the geniuses behind Spaced. Shaun of the Dead has a brilliant cast, a clever storyline, lots of lots of zombies, and just the right amount of gore to allow me to watch it without vomiting popcorn everywhere. I was in.

Shaun of the Dead movie poster



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Horror Month Day 22, Part 2: Return of the Living Dead

Illustrator Dale Rawlings brings us the second part of a zombie retrospective, taking a look at 1985’s Return of the Living Dead.

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While Night of the Living Dead set the standard and established the tropes for all the zombie films that followed, 1985’s Return of the Living Dead broke those rules. Return of the Living Dead was originally based on the 1977 novel of the same name written by John Russo, George A. Romero’s former writing partner, and co-writer of Night of the Living Dead. But the film differs greatly from the novel takes a more comedic approach to the. Because the film came out in 1985, it is infused with a punk rock sensibility to shake things up and give movie audiences a fresh approach to the zombie film genre. It also had the distinction of being the first meta-zombie movie, referencing Night of the Living Dead several times in the dialogue.

Return of the Living Dead poster



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Horror Month Day 22, Part 1: Night of the Living Dead

Today’s horror review is by Dale Rawlings, a comic book illustrator based in Washington, D.C. He covers Night of the Living Dead.

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Zombies terrified me as a kid. In fact, they scared the crap out of me. The concept that someone would die (in most cases a friend or family member) then minutes later re-animate eager to eat you alive was truly horrifying. This scenario resonates deeply with the primeval fears of humanity and held a frightening fascination for my young mind. Maybe this is why Night of the Living Dead is still my favorite horror movie.

Night of the Living Dead poster



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Horror Month Day 21: Event Horizon

Jon is the editor of doubledumbassonyou.com, your destination in the Alpha Quadrant for nerd news, nostalgia, and colorful metaphors. You can follow him on Twitter @doubledumbass or Instagram @dbldumbass. He writes about Event Horizon.

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Years before Paul W.S. Anderson was forcing Resident Evil sequels upon the movie-going public he directed a science fiction horror film called Event Horizon which channeled inspiration from films like Alien, 2001: A Space Odyssey, and Hellraiser.

Event Horizon poster



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Marvel Unveils Full Phase 3 Lineup of Films and Dates

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Producer Kevin Feige is currently revealing Marvel’s movie plans for the future (Phase 3). Confirmed so far:

Captain America: Civil War – May 6, 2016 (at first they joked that the subtitle would be Serpent Society but it will be Civil War, co-starring Iron Man)

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Doctor Strange – November 4th 2016 (Scott Derickson confirmed to direct)

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – May 5th, 2017

Thor: Ragnarok – July 28th 2017

Black Panther – November 3rd, 2017 (Marvel’s first black hero to headline his own film. Feige confirmed they have put seeds for this film in Avengers 2, saying, “It’s about how this isolationist country of Wakanda meets the world.” Chadwick Boseman will star.)

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Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018

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Captain Marvel – July 6th, 2018 (confirmed to be the Carol Danvers version, making this Marvel’s first film to star a solo female hero)

Inhumans – November 2, 2018

Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 1, 2019

You’ll probably hear some inevitable comments on “superhero fatigue” about to set in, but you won’t here that from us. This looks exciting!