Monthly Archives: April 2013

Comic Book Pull List for May 1, 2013

the-black-bat-01This week, I’ve tried to pick from a different batch of publishers than I usually do. Only one of this week’s comic picks of the week are from the big four publishers. That would be Hawkeye #10. The new Hawkeye series is critically acclaimed and nominated for scads of awards. Now’s probably as good a time as any to get into one of the best comics on shelves today.

From slightly smaller publishers, we go to Dynamite and Valiant. This week, Dynamite relaunches classic 1930s pulp magazine character The Black Bat in Black Bat #1. Over at Valiant, Shadowman gets a prequel comic to his current series that launched last November with Shadowman #0.

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Game Dev Tycoon Fights Piracy with Irony

game-dev-tycoon-piracyDid you get a pirated copy of Greenheart Games’ new Game Dev Tycoon game? Struggling massively to make money in your simulation? That’s not bad game design or even a bad crack. That’s something that Greenheart did to teach game pirates a lesson.

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Bitcoin Transactions are Taxable in Canada

one-bitcoinApril 30th is the deadline to file your personal income tax return in Canada. If you haven’t filed your taxes yet (and aren’t self-employed), you might want to get that taken care of but should take note of the latest tax edict from Canada Revenue Agency.

In response to an inquiry by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation about it, the CRA has said that just because Bitcoin purchases and sales are done online doesn’t mean that they are exempt from tax. The use of bitcoins are considered taxable by Canada’s tax authority.

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Building (Critical) Consensus: Star Trek: The Video Game

star-trek-double-facepalmYou know, I was looking forward to getting a review copy of Star Trek: The Video Game. Then it turned out that they weren’t sending out review copies of Star Trek. Turns out that I was spared from a game so bad that I’ve been forced to use the classic Star Trek double facepalm rather than the game’s box art as we usually do.

The problems with Star Trek: The Video Game are probably too numerous to list here. However, the big ones are terrible AI, clipping issues, issues forcing you to restart the game, not having drop-in, drop-out co-op and the PC version’s online co-op not working. As a result, it’s joined Aliens: Colonial Marines and The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct for worst game of 2013. As with the other two, there’s so much potential in Star Trek and it’s all been completely squandered.

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The XCOM Shooter relaunched as “The Bureau: XCOM Declassified”

the-bureau-xcom-declassified-box-artAfter many delays and much controversy, the XCOM shooter is finally on track for a retail release. After being announced as a first-person shooter reboot to the cult hit X-COM series, it’s now a third-person shooter spin-off set in the XCOM universe called “The Bureau: XCOM Declassified.”

In The Bureau, you play as Special Agent William Carter at the height of the Cold War in 1962. At first, working for The Bureau was about investigating possible Soviet activity. It quickly gave way to finding extra-terrestrial activity, dealing with the alien threat and covering it up to keep from inciting a nationwide panic.

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Doctor Who: Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS Review

doctor-who-journey-to-the-centre-of-the-tardis-posterSome episodes are easy to sum up in the opening tease of a review but Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS is definitely not one of those episodes. There was a mix of action, suspense, intrigue and wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey to make for a fun episode. And there was even an unofficial tour of the TARDIS to boot.

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Geek Links of the Week

Jim Sterling wins this week. His take on the fallacy of a killer app in gaming perfectly shows how publishers are going in the wrong direction in developing games. [The Escapist]

The PlayStation 4’s lead system architect, Mark Cerny, gave an in-depth interview about the hardware powering Sony’s next-gen console. [Gamasutra]

This is a convenient link since we had a Papo & Yo review this week. P&Y director Vander Caballero talks about why going console exclusive can have a benefit for indie games. [Indie Games]

I don’t know if we mentioned repeatedly but this week was Canadian Gaming Week on The Lowdown Blog. We closed the week up with a look at the powerhouse that is Canadian video game developers. [The Lowdown Blog]

Unfortunately, we didn’t end up getting a review copy of Star Trek: The Video Game. However, it turns out that nobody did. Angry Joe got the same email I did. He goes over the PR and programming disaster that is Star Trek’s launch.

Batman: Arkham Origins to Include Multiplayer

batman-arkham-origins-game-informer-coverNot only is Batman: Arkham Origins changing studios but it’s also going to change-up its offerings. Sources tell Kotaku that WB Montreal’s upcoming Arkham Origins will include a multiplayer mode in addition to the single player mode that was the only offering in the two previous Arkham games.

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Nintendo to Skip E3 and Focus on Smaller Events

nintendo-mario-logoJust when you thought the signs couldn’t point towards any more doom and gloom for Nintendo, the console manufacturer announced that they wouldn’t be attending E3 this year. Instead of doing a keynote presentation at the gaming industry’s largest show, they will focus on smaller private events geared to specific markets.

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Is There Anything Jennifer Hale Can’t Do?

If you’ve play a video game anytime over the last 15 years or watched an animated TV show or movie over the last 20, you’re more than likely to have heard Jennifer Hale’s voice. The Canadian voice actress is one of the preeminent voice-over talents in the business today. She was even named “the most prolific videogame voice actor (female)” by Guinness World Records. I think that award might have to do with the 140+ games she’s been in during her career. In the last month alone, you could have heard her in Gods of War: Ascension, BioShock Infinite and Injustice: Gods Among Us.

Not only is Hale a video game voice actress, her voice has also appeared in over 60 TV series and over 25 movies.

Since this week is Canadian Gaming Week, I felt it was only appropriate to pay tribute to one of Canada’s greatest contributors to gaming and the queen of video game voices, Jennifer Hale.

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