Baltimore Comic Con is a small but wonderful comic book convention held in Baltimore, Maryland. It is held at the Baltimore Convention Center. This year it was held from September 5th to September 7th, 2014.
Although this was my first year attending as press, I went last year as well.
One writer that was an absolute pleasure to meet was Tom King. He took the time to autograph Grayson #1 and A Once Crowded Sky for me. Although Tom spoke many praises for his work on Grayson, he expressed his passion and love for his novel: A Once Crowded Sky.
Here is a quick synopsis from Amazon on A Once Crowded Sky:
A tour de force debut novel from a former CIA counter-terrorism officer, A Once Crowded Sky fuses the sensibility of bombastic, comic-book-style storytelling with modern literary fiction to bring to life a universe of super men stripped of their powers, newly mortal men forced to confront danger in a world without heroes.
The superheroes of Arcadia City fight a wonderful war and play a wonderful game, forever saving yet another day. However, after sacrificing both their powers and Ultimate, the greatest hero of them all, to defeat the latest apocalypse, these comic book characters are transformed from the marvelous into the mundane.
After too many battles won and too many friends lost, The Soldier of Freedom was fine letting all that glory go. But when a new threat blasts through his city, Soldier, as ever, accepts his duty and reenlists in this next war. Without his once amazing abilities, he’s forced to seek the help of the one man who walked away, the sole hero who refused to make the sacrifice–PenUltimate, the sidekick of Ultimate, who through his own rejection of the game has become the most powerful man in the world, the only one left who might still, once again, save the day.
I look forward to reading A Once Crowded Sky by Tom King and reviewing it for everyone.
Another person that was a pleasure to meet and watch and listen to at a panel was Charles Soule. He offered his talents on Death of Wolverine, as well as other works like She Hulk and Inhuman.
Since this convention was local to where I live, my absolute favorite comic book store was present and I had to make a stop at Third Eye Comics’ booth! If you’re not familiar with Third Eye Comics and live in the Maryland area, I highly recommend checking them out. Everyone, from Steve, the owner, to all the other workers take the time to learn your name and what you enjoy. They are an absolute joy to be around and indulge in your comic book needs.
Baltimore Comic Con may be small, but is absolutely worth the experience. I highly recommend at the very least taking a day out to enjoy.
PAX East 2014 was my fourth PAX but my first time going as Media. As always, PAX East was a great experience! Every year PAX East is held in Boston, so I enjoy being able to see another part of the East Coast while checking out all the video games.
This year I got to see many different video games, the most notable of which included This War of Mine from 11 Bit Studios, Sniper Elite 3 and Defense Grid 2 from 505 Games and Hidden Path Entertainment, and Framed from Loveshack Entertainment. All of these games were very different from one another but brought a lot to the table to create an enjoyable experience. This War of Mine allows you to gain insight into the struggle of a war torn country from a very individual level of trying to survive day to day. Sniper Elite 3 brought a new and fun entry into shooters with absolutely amazing and awe-worthy graphics. Defense Grid 2 was an amazingly fun tower defense game that doesn’t fail to keep you on your toes. Framed was a very unique entry with a puzzle style journey through a mystery. I plan to get all of these games the minute they’re available and I highly recommend each and every one of them.
Of course, there was far more to see during PAX East as the expanse of the show floor and panels is ginormous! 2014 was definitely the year of the indie games for PAX East. The presence of AAA games seemed to be a bit light and I was quite worried when I saw the schedule, but PAX East did not disappoint.
An organization I would definitely like to highlight is Operation Supply Drop. As an Army brat (my parents served in the Army for a long time) and having a lot of friends in the military, it definitely makes me happy to see an organization that makes it their mission to help out the troops. Operation Supply Drop does just that and more. I met with Captain Stephen Machuga of the US Army and Charity Founder. Captain Machuga, as well as everyone at OSD’s booth exhuded passion and enthusiasm about their mission to bring “video games to soldiers in combat zones and military hospitals.” Being in a combat zone, in military hospitals, and other areas where soldiers serve can be extremely stressful so OSD does their best to make “fun where there is none!” There was never a dull moment at the booth while there or passing and I’ve seen so much enthusiasm from the gaming community to help their cause. It’ll be very interesting to see how OSD expands and grows further to be such a great presence for our troops. For more information about their cause and how to help out, check out their website at www.OperationSupplyDrop.org, their Twitter @OpSupplyDrop, and their Facebook page at Facebook.com/OperationSupplyDrop.
I also got to check out numerous booths on the show floor which is always exciting. GUNNAR Optiks never disappoints with their selection of gaming eyewear. I even snagged myself a pair from their Intercept line in Ink (purple). I always get a pair of GUNNARs every time I go to PAX East and absolutely love them. Whether I’m gaming or staring at a computer screen, GUNNARs help reduce the strain in my eyes. I’ve also found that their line of sunglasses are absolutely wonderful and are far better than all of the other sunglasses that I own.
As always, PAX East was a great experience and I highly recommend going if you ever get the chance. It’s worth the fun and craziness and the video game culture galore! Everyone is excited and happy to be there with so many things to do with such a short amount of time!
Although I may not attend next year, you may be able to catch me at PAX South and PAX Prime next year. I, also, plan to be at Otakon this summer and Baltimore Comic Con this fall.
Did you go? What did you think of PAX East? Is there anything from my experience at PAX East that you’d like to hear more about? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @LadyLoveMonster!
Inspired by Adventure Time, Minecraft, and Legend of Zelda, May’s Loot Crate has to be my favorite so far! Loot Crate is a monthly subscription box filled with nerdy goodies – toys, stickers, t-shirts, etc. It’s like getting nerd Christmas every month! This month featured a Legend of Zelda t-shirt. If you look closely, it’s Link made out of words. My very favorite item in this Loot Crate was the Adventure Time tin. Not only do you get an awesome character tin, but you get a blind bag figure inside. My tin was Fionna and I got BMO inside! This was my favorite because those are two of my favorite Adventure Time characters.
A very close second for favorite item is the Legend of Zelda key chain. It doubles as a bottle opener and it has a picture of the famous scene, “It’s dangerous to go alone…” I always love when Loot Crates come with practical items. Another item worth mentioning was a Minecraft blind bag “hanger,” which I guess works as a key chain because the ring on it is sturdy enough for one. I got a skeleton.
Other items in this month’s Crate are tons and tons of stickers from Polaris and Maker studios, as well as a soundtrack for the talk show The Friend Zone.
One strange thing about this month’s Loot Crate, however, is that it didn’t come with the usual monthly magazine that explains what came in it and the occasional article. Maybe it was just a mistake and they forgot to put it in my Crate?
Either way, I would consider May’s Loot Crate to be my all-time favorite so far. If you like what you see, Loot Crate is $20 per month, including shipping. Go to LootCrate.com to sign up and be sure to follow Loot Crate on Facebook for discounts and contests.
I was so amazed by what I walked into the main show floor at PAX East I witnessed all developers, hardware manufacturers have their very own nook carved out of the Boston convention center. Before I walked down the long steps and I snapped the 1st picture of my face in utter amazement. I first walked into the Boston Convention Center and stood in line to receive my first media badge. I proceeded to walk towards the big glass doors spotted with a few security guards and some structures promoting PAX. As I walked through the door I had an Idea of what was to be in store for me but, what took me by surprise the most was the amazement that stemmed from the actuality that I have finally made it! I have made it to one milestone of mine to go to one of the big shows in the gaming world PAX East!
I descended the staircase I first noticed Bethesda Softworks booth showcasing large walls of Wolfenstein & The Evil Within images the large titan tron screen had no image up yet, later they were to display two titles ESO (Elder Scrolls Online) and Wolfenstein.The two titles displayed are good as some of you know already of ESO but, the beginning sequence to Wolfenstein was awesome a far cry from the original game of course in the graphics department but, more importantly story. Later, I wandered around snapping selfies of me in from of Turtle Beaches mammoth sized headphones and snapshots Xbox One’s large setup. In Microsoft’s booth they were setting up Kinect Rivals Sports definitely a game I would love to play on the show floor tomorrow. I also snapped a picture of a barely set up of Project Spark another title I must play coming from the wonders over there at Rare Games. As I moseyed around the corner from there I saw roughly 15 monitors half in which had Xbox One’s hooked up, I’m sure the rest will plug into the flat screen tvs. I wandered around avoiding heavy machinery and guys and gals pushing carts around with serious merch and building supplies and I got side swiped by that hinted at behemoth two legged dinosaur monster from the game Evolve and this statue is surely fine crafted and gargantuan!
There was several sections setup for pc play for titles from developers like NC Soft & Carbine Studios WildStar and games like Infinite crisis which has a large section carved out with custom comfy gamer PC chairs on stage and off… sounds like some great things will happen in that side of the convention center. I have heard some rumbling about Infinite crisis but, when I saw a little bit of the cast which is DC universe characters, if you didn’t know made me flip my wig (just a tad). When I took a deeper look on the outskirts of the show floor where all the large displayed casted its shiny shadows I saw random geekery merchandise from creators like Fangamer whom makes all types of stuff showing reverence to our video game favorites like Animal Crossing New Leaf socks and Legend Of Zelda shirts and the flying P from Super Mario Bros 3. There is plenty from these wonderful folks and hopefully I can catch the ear of one of their booth reps to ask them a few questions for realotakugamer.com. I also saw small booths displaying mobile games, This weekend I will try to over the small indie mobile games that are glue that binds this convention. I saw merchandiser booths for retro games and even retro systems to go along with those classic gems. Oh yeah, The Crew had a grand display too giving us the feel of working in the garage set of fast and the furious RIP Paul Walker.
Come to find out after I recharged my body phone and wrote part of this article on the 1st floor when I went back inside to check out some more booths for around 20 minutes an “Enforcer” people whom are hired to secure the floors for random things that shouldn’t be happening, spotted me and noticed I had a Media Pass. The nice fellow asked if i had any “other passes like a vendor badge”, I honestly said “no” and he politely asked me to leave. He walked me to the front counter, the information counter and explained to them that the security at the door was not checking badges properly. I was elated that i was able to experience the behind the scenes of PAX East while also giving you, our readers the inside scoop on my Twitter account.
Boy oh boy I have plenty to say about my 1st PAX East but, to the thing is it hasn’t even started yet! This is only the beginning and oh how sweet it is even at the crunch time for the shows main opening. Stay tuned for future reporting from myself Sean “NoirZilla Gamer” Jacobs and Tiffany Marshall on whats going down on the show floor at PAX East 2014 from RealOtakuGamer.com
“Watches are good at telling time but, imagine having useful, actionable information there precisely where you need it automatically,Today we are announcing that Android is extending to wearables”
-David Singleton Director of engineering, Android
Watch out Samsung, we know that your original Galaxy Gear didn’t fair so well in the market and at this moment Galaxy Gear 2 cleaned up some missteps but, Google has decided to show you a seemingly better way in doing things. Don’t get me wrong, you rock in making phones and tablets and it sure is odd that good ole google sure isn’t even shaking your tree a little bit but, check this thing out…
Crisp UI, Sleek bezel & band designs.
If first looks could kill I’m sure the death recipient would have a smile on its face. Google’s Android Wear will be hitting our stores “later this year” infused with Big G’s very own Operating System. Android Wear will be buddying up with partners such as; Asus, HTC, LG, Motorola, and Samsung… HOLD ON, Samsung? Oh Google, you sly dog you. Now the upcoming wearable technologies coming from the search engine/E-mail client giant will really be interesting.
“To bring this vision to life we are working with consumer electronics manufactures, chip makers and fashion brands who are committed to fostering an ecosystem of watches in a variety of styles, shapes and sizes “
-David Singleton Director of engineering, Android
I would really like to now know whom is the company that created the device(s) announced by Google? Like these bezel designs of these Android Wear watches.
With Google App integration throughout these badboys should fly off the stores shelves.
Alex Faaborg Designer, Android elaborated on the newly designed custom UI that all the Android wearable devices will have embedded in them stating…
“(The UI) is based around voice and contextual information that’s reactive to your surroundings… it has to be incredibly fast, incredibly glanceable. There is only two components: Information that is most relevant to you and the ability to speak to it and do a quick command.”
Recently Announced Motorola’s Moto 360
Weather, calendar information, important meetings, integrated GPS locating where you are, how far you are from a scheduled meeting and how long it will takes you to arrive there will be incorporated in these devices. Things that are most important to you will roam around with you all over the place like checking your favorite sports teams scores on games you cannot view at that time. You can also respond naturally to messages received simply by speaking to Google Now “Reply” and say whatever that needs to be relayed to your contact and then it automatically send out your message. GPS services also can be initialized on the fly by asking google to search nearby locations for you like ” OK, Google find nearby movie theatres” and swiftly and accurately the device will find them just like that.
LG’s recently announced “G-Watch”
It was not mentioned if the wearables will be tethered to your smartphones like Samsungs Galaxy Gear series time will only tell as more information trickles out closer to the launching of these devices. I can say for sure if these Android wearables can be independant of the smart phones i definitely would love to have one of these pretty puppies. Even still what Google officially announced yesterday is still a great advancement in wearable technologies and thats always a great thing. Stay tuned for updated information on Android Wear & other geekery here at RealOtakuGamer.com
Are you as excited as I am? We are TWO days away from launch! Final Fantasy X is my favorite of the Final Fantasy franchise, with VII and IX after that! So, don’t chew my head off for not picking 7 as my favorite.
Since this was my favorite installation, I decided to make sure I’d get the Collector’s Edition! At $80, it seems very well worth it, especially if you’re an avid fan and love the soundtrack (amongst many other wonderful things in this set)! Here is the unboxing courtesy of Square Enix North America (NA):
Pretty darn cool right? Exactly! It’s such an amazing deal too!
Now, here’s the NA Launch Trailer!:
Final Fantasy X was a game I enjoyed as a kid and spent endless hours playing and replaying. I hold it very near and dear to my heart so you can only imagine the beginnings of my excitement for this HD Remaster.
What are your thoughts so far with this HD Remaster of X and X-2? Would you like to see this treatment for another game? Let us know your thoughts in the comments! I’d love to hear from you.
On May 17th and 18th from 9am to 9am, Naughty Dog, Wargaming America, Rooster Teeth, and ASTRO Gaming are teaming up for a great cause! The charity they’ll be helping out is Operation Supply Drop.
Operation Supply Drop’s mission is:
“Operation Supply Drop (OSD) is a military gaming 501(c)(3) charity designed to build video game filled care packages for soldiers (America and Her Allies) both deployed forward to combat zones as well as those recovering in military hospitals.”
This event will be used to raise funds for video game care packages for soldiers in Afghanistan and recovery centers across the United States. It will be a 24-hour non-stop gaming marathon which OSD dubs as an 8-Bit Salute.
It’s always great to see companies and people coming together for such a great cause.
Operation Supply Drop was created by Captain Stephen Machuga in 2010 and has since raised approximately $700,000 and served 2,500 soldiers.
Here is a video to show what OSD is all about:
To register or donate to this cause or just simply want to find out more about OSD, go here.
Mario Kart 8 for Wii U is set to drop on May 30th in North America and in Europe, however our friends across the pond are going to be getting a little extra. Confirmed by Nintendo in this short teaser European fans will have the chance to grab the Mario Kart 8 Limited Edition set, which comes with a copy of Mario Kart 8 and a Spiny Shell item collectible. This little shell of blue doom has been an iconic item within the Mario Kart franchise since Mario Kart 64 and its use within the games have been heavily desired due to its awesome power. No word yet if this little bundle of joy is coming stateside but we are still a few months away from this anticipated release. Check out the video below to see it in action!