Comic Movie and Gaming Console news plus more Dead Space update

A few intereting tidbits is movie news:

  • Looks like director Robert Rodriguez (“Machete”) may not be the director afterall for the Ryan Reynolds ‘Deadpool’ movie spinning off of Wolverine.  Rodriguez cites a tight schedule with Spy Kids 4 and other commitments puts his timeline in jeapordy.
  • Speaking of Wolverine, it looks like the sequel has found a new director in Darren Aronofsky.  The sequel will be ‘somewhat’ based on Wolvie’s lore of finding love in Japan (sans Jean Grey).  Maybe we’ll see the Silver Samurai?
  • In more sequel news, it’s noted that Honathan Liebsen has signed on to direct the ‘Clash of the Titans’ follow up.  It appears that the sequel will be filmed in native 3D as opposed to the post conversion process of the first and filming will kick off in January.
  • Now that Pirahhna 3D is out, someone is making a Sharks 3D movie…*sigh*
  • Rumor has it that sunglass make Oakley will have a tie-in with Disney’s new TRON movie, meaning cool new glasses ala the game grid?
  • Major Nelson over at XBOX has revealed that a new XBOX 360 controller will be released in North America shortly with an enhanced D-pad.  This will make the pad more accurate for hard-core gamers that love their fighting games such as Street Fighter, but unless you’re one of those types of gamers, no real need for it.  Said to also launch in Europe most likely in Feb. 2011.  One draw back?  The cost.  It’s reported to have a U.S. street price of $64.99
  • Also, expect Xbox Live to raise the price on their Gold membership by $10 come November.  That sucks, but they site the cost and demand of delivering and maintenance on more streaming and enhanced content. Boo!
  • In funny news, a compnay going by the name of Mojowijo has developed and will be marketing/selling ‘sex toy’ attachments for the Wii controllers, taking advanatge of the vibration technology.  Somewhere, somehow, bluetooth will be involved, but really?  Is there really a need to turn your Wii remote into a sex toy? Why not use the billion other products or your electric toothbrush for that matter.

Now onto my Dead Space updates:

The book, ‘Dead Space: Martyr’ – As of this writing, I’ve had the novel for about 9 days now and am close to being 3/4’s done.  It is not what I expected at all, but intriguing none-the-less.  Overall the book is a bit slow, but the good news is the chapters are relatively small and makes for a swift and easy read.  It’s definently geared towards mature adults with the language and descriptions inside and weaves an origin story about ‘The Marker’ and the church of Unitology as depicted in the game.  As far as I can tell, The Marker, very similar to 2001’s Monolith is a device of alien origin that has the ability to drive people slowly insane, mad, and violent when exposed for lengths of time or in close proximity to it. 

Of course, enter the cliched scientist who is discovering teh real meaning behind it, and the cliched military man who has his own ideas for The Marker and you cover a good a portion of some sci-fi rehash.  That being said, it’s not a bad book.  I actually find the authors writings very clever and it appears he’s taken great thought and care into developing a story that will have a good payoff for Dead Space fans.  I’m having a hard time deciding how predictable the events within actually are.  I can see some of the elements a mile away, but how the author gets there still holds my interest, and even this far in, The Marker, and its symbols are just as mysterious to me the reader.

Now that game: Beginning with Chapter 4 & 5, I have noticed the game is indeed getting harder.  I still love audio, text, and video logs I’m picking up and really help to set the tone.  I’ve also picked up the ripper and contact rifle as weapons.  I find the ripper is good in tight quarters when low laying necromorphs are surrounding you from various angles at once, but it’s damn slow on the reload.  The contact gun on the other hand…..I’m having a hard tiem figuring out exactly what it does.  It has a low ammo capacity, and shots are either hard to come by in the wild or expensive at the store and I just haven’t figured out how to best use it.

I’ve found a few more schematics, but the best upgrade so far is to Suit #3 and extra oxygen capacity.  There were a few moments in both 4 & 5 where oxygen is key, so make sure you have at least one extra air canister on hand.  I’ve also been using teh med packs a bit more as well.  There is one baddy in general that shoots off a ‘spore’ to the ground, which in turn sprouts a tentacle, which in turns spits out a deadly projectile at you.  Those projectiles pack some punch, so make sure you are in run-n-gun mode, have extra health packs, and are willing to use stasis.  You need to take these out quickly, because if you don’t they tend to multiply and once that happens, you’re as good as dead.  The key here is to sever all the vital points of the creature generally stuck to the wall that spits them out.  I think there are 6 vital points that must be dealt with and through trial and error, I found the good old Plasma Cutter and Stasis combination do the trick.  There’s one sequence here that the creature is at the end of a long hall….you need to run up to it (not to close though as it can one-shot you and rip your head off in one strike), but close enough to use Stasis and then ‘aim’ for the six points.  This may take a few attempts.

One other part I found very difficult was the manual gunnery station against the asteroids using the rail gun.  There’s a sequence where you sit in a chair and take aim at asteroids headed to the Ishimura and you need to pulverize them into dust before they hit the ship and take out the armor and bulkheads.  Sufefr enough damage and you’re dead in a fireball sequence.  Suffice to say, your aim, even with an analog stick must be true on and fast.  If too many slip by, you’re toast and you can’t recover.  Thus far this was my most frustrating moment in the game.  The whole sequence takes about 1.5 minutes, but after the first 60 seconds, it seems like it takes forever.  I must have died at least 10x in a row before I made it, and I made it by the skin of my teeth.  It’s a fun part and a nice departure from the rest of the game but it’s a little agressive and I felt it out of balance (meaning more difficult than I think it should have been). 

Too put it in perspective the ‘boss’ sequence at the end of Chapter 5, I got on the first try (cryo freeze 2x) and run, where this mid-level challenge seems very unforgiving.

These last two chapters, 4 & 5, I was able to complete each in about 1.5 hours instead of 2.  So I’m starting chapter 6 with about 9 hours under my belt thus far.


Comics: Uncanny X-Men 499 & Legacy 213

Xavier hurt for the 1000th time.

Xavier hurt for the 1000th time.

Ugh.  That what I have to say about the recent X-Men core titles.  I used to look so forward to the X-Men in general.  The good ‘ole days when X-Men launched a new #1 with a Jim Lee jam cover.  These were the days where X-Force was on fire (by Rob Liefield) and we had great arcs like X-Tinction Agenda and Age of Apocalypse.

Sure, I understand that the X-Men universe is in constant change.  It really started to take a nosedive in my opinion just after M-Day.  I still don’t understand who at Marvel was keeping track of the 198.  There sure seemed like more than 198 still running around to me, and all the other concurrent crap like Calypso and her tentacle arms and and how they were destroying Cable.

Then enter Joss Whedons Astonishing X-Men story and I can’t figure out who is where anymore and is Beast (aka Dr. Henry McCoy) a cat or not a cat?  Depends who was on pencil duties that month.  And don’t get me started on the whole Kitty phasing the bullet through the whole planet thing.  Booo.

Suffice to say I won’t get into a huge diatribe right now, but this is whats wrong with X-verse right now: Too many titles and characters spread so thin that stories just seem uninspired or rehashed or just plain confusing….i.e. no longer fun.  This whole “Divided We Stand” arc between all the X titles is just crap.  I say it’s crap because none of the editors have made it clear what is actually happening, what the deep ramifications are, and where are we headed.  It just seems everything (except Peter David on X-Factor) is just rushed just to say we got a comic out the door.

Case in point: the two core titles Uncanny and Legacy.

Legacy:  What the hell is going on with Gambit and Xavier and Shaw?  Gambit is all of a sudden better after his not too distant jaunt with Apocalypse and his dialogue is just so stupid as of late.  What even gets me more is that Xavier just spent a few issues comatose on a lab slab (thought to be dead) with his brain being repaired by the new Acolytes, just to be telepathically invaded by Mr. Sinister, just to be shot by some goon and bleeding to death….again.  Sorry, but this is just so un-original anymore, and this whole arc with Sebastian Shaw teaming with ‘happy days are hear again’ Remy just seems to be dragging on and on….which seems like an oxymoron seeing that writer Mike Carey insists on every page having a fight panel of some sort.  And also sorry but I seriously dislike Scot Eatons pencils.  Not one of my favorite artists by a long shot, so I have sadly have two very strong marks against this flagship title.

Uncanny 499: Yeah, we all expected a big lead up to issue #500, but splitting the teams into two and sending one to Russia (Nightcrawler, Wolverine, Colossus) and the others (Emma, Scott, Angel, and the others) to a psychedelic induced San Fransisco of the 1960’s is equally just filler material until someone figures out where they may be going with #500 and beyond.  However, I do like the art style, especially Mike Choi’s work on Emma Frost (hubba hubba) and the interpretation of Cyclops was very nice.  But again, they took a sleeper story and stretched it over four issues.  I can’t even tell you why or Colossus, Wolverine and Nightcrawler were even in the Soviet Union right now…because it was forgettable and again just seemed like filler material.  It was a nice surprise to see Omega Red, but the cleanup and resolution was too quick….Here ya go SHIELD.  When the sub plots of both teams wrapped up, the issue just made an abrupt cut like everything is back to normal again and just seemed to…well,…end.

Needless to say, all the X-titles are suffering right now, except maybe X-Factor….but that’s because you have a great writer and a much smaller sandbox he’s playing in right now.