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Topics - Link Prime

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Games / Elden Ring
« on: 08 March, 2022, 08:26:47 AM »
Preface; I didn't even hear about this game until 2 days before it was released.
Shortly after it was released I received dozens of excited Whatsapp messages and PS screenshots showing me exactly what I was missing.
So yes, I am an unashamed bandwagon jumper.

I purchased the "Day One" edition for PS5 forthwith, and booted it up last weekend.
Not to bury the lede; yes, it is as good as the hype machine would have you believe.

I am not a Dark Souls fan - I only ever bothered with the remaster of the first game on Switch, and the clunky controls put me off more than the legendary difficulty.
Elden Ring is in much the same vein as Dark Souls, but fans of Skyrim and Zelda: Breath of the Wild will find some stylistic comforts too.
Graphics and designs are stunning.

Yes, it is rock hard, but that just makes progression all the more satisfying.
I've spent my first few days just avoiding enemies (or fleeing from them) as much as possible in an attempt to find Sites of Grace / maps as far and wide as possible to enable fast travel and positions of convenient resurrection when needed.

I've put off fighting the first main boss Margit, the Fell Omen until now, but will give it a shot this evening.

Anyone else playing it? 

General / Writers Block
« on: 05 November, 2021, 01:12:07 PM »
Supply chain, Brexit, ageing readership, cover price, distribution - as with all publications, there are a few threats on the horizon.
2000AD may have a unique one though.
I'll prefix this post with the usual rambling; There is a lot of top tier entertainment to consume out there with movies, streaming services, video games, novels etc, and as I get older I've noticed that my tolerance for the "passably good" has reduced considerably.
You have to keep hitting the home runs to stay off the bench as it were, and I've become quite a ruthless coach.
Without hesitation I'll stop a movie 10 minutes in, stop playing a game after an hour, stop buying a comic series after one poor issue.
The only break, say, a Netflix show might get may be because I'm watching it with my partner and she's enjoying it.
I've voiced dissatisfaction with 2000AD in the past couple of years, and all other considerations aside, my main problem comes down to the quality of a significant portion of the writing.
As it stands in November 2021, many of the reliable greats are semi-retired, retired or 'gone':
- Wagner, despite pleasantly surprising us with quite a few weeks of Dredd this year (and The Citadel on the horizon for 2022), has a vastly reduced input.
- Mills has left, and possibly (probably) won't be back.
- Grant seems to have retired, although I can't recall if that was officially announced or not.
- Smith is MIA, could potentially return, but even if he did, how prolific would his input be?

Who do we have left with regular contributions?
Top tier are probably Abnett and Rennie. Both very prolific and consistent.
I would also highly rate Carroll, Edginton, Williams and Kek-W although they would be more prone to missteps.
I'm sure there a few others that could be considered solid, but that's who comes to mind for me anyway.

After that? I dunno. I can't say that anything from the newer Droids, from the past 5 years or so, has Thrilled me in any memorable way.
And if that's where we stand right now, how will things look by 2025, 2030?
We're only an unfortunate coronary thrombosis or two away from a potential significant further drop in writing quality.
Will another break-through talent like Ewing or Spurrier add a bit of spice to the mix? I would sincerely hope so.

I've mentioned a couple of times in the past two years that I was considering pulling the plug on 2000AD, but always returned from the precipice.
It can offer at least one or two decent reads a week (I'm currently enjoying Scarlet Traces and The Out) and the artwork, covers, colouring, lettering and production values are consistently excellent.

There is also a very long connection there that I find difficult to break.
39 years right now, by next autumn I will have read / partially read every consecutive Prog in 40 years.

Look, it's all subjective I know, and I read Prog reviews on this Forum every week by very sound fellow boarders who are lapping up pretty much everything they get.
FFS, maybe it is just me.

News / Henry Flint's new 2000AD Project
« on: 03 September, 2021, 11:54:17 AM »
Anyone have any news or scoop on King Henry's upcoming "secret project"?

Seems an age since we had him grace the Prog (was it 'End of Days' last year?), and he's always struck me as an artist who can meed a deadline.

Surely we're due to find out sooner than later.

Games / Playdate
« on: 31 August, 2021, 03:49:30 PM »
Grud help me, I couldn't help pre-ordering this:


I was actually on a pre-order mailing list for months (maybe years), but the 1st batch of consoles due to ship in 2021 sold out while I literally slept.

I have an order in for a "2022" slot, but no fixed delivery date.
Also, advance warning - you have to pay the full amount + eye watering shipping fee upfront.

Still, Panic are ace and it just looks too cool for school. Looking forward to sticking it into me jeans pocket.

Books & Comics / Dan Abnett on Vampirella
« on: 02 November, 2020, 04:00:33 PM »
Maybe old news now, but I just read that current 2000AD MVP Dan Abnett will be writing a forthcoming cosmic-set Vampirella mini-series.
Artwork by erstwhile Art Droid Paul Davidson.



Looks nice.

Help! / Comic back issues (UK & Ireland)
« on: 02 November, 2020, 03:48:26 PM »
General query - any recommendations for reliable websites that sell comic back issues?

Preferably UK / Ireland based due to ever increasing international shipping fees.

Games / Evercade Console
« on: 26 June, 2020, 03:59:12 PM »
Heard of this? Me neither, but I just read that a collection of some beloved Oliver Twins games are going to be released on it; https://www.nintendolife.com/news/2020/06/evercade_retro_system_to_receive_oliver_twins_collection_cartridge_all_profits_will_go_to_charity

It'll be a real nostalgic buzz playing some of those Dizzy games again, and I was impressed with the range of other cartridge collections also available.

Have just ordered the basic console pack for £60 on Amazon. Bargain.

General / It Shoulda Ended with...
« on: 13 August, 2019, 04:12:35 PM »
Wossat? Something you used to love sucks now, does it?
Well my entitled nerdy friend, welcome to the inaugural post in "It Shoulda Ended with..."

You don't have to explain your reasons. You don't even have to dislike the stuff that came afterward.
All you need to do is place your finger on the point that - if the story had ended there - the work would be much stronger, would hold up as timeless, undiluted, yadda yadda.

I'll kick us off with 10 at whimsical random:

Stat Wars - Episode VI
Bad Company - The Krool Heart
Nemesis the Warlock - Book IX
Daredevil - Born Again
Watchmen - Issue 12
Durham Red - The Empty Suns
The X-Files - Season 6
Slaine - The Horned God
Indiana Jones - The Last Crusade
The Dark Judges - Necropolis

Now; who's gonna be the first to mention Chaos Day?

General / Cassandra Syndrome
« on: 13 August, 2019, 10:34:26 AM »
Maybe something discussed before, but recent comments had me mulling it over again; is it time to "retire" Judge Anderson?

The character and strip had such impact in her heyday - I remember being more excited about the prospect of a new Anderson PSI Division strip than a new Dredd or many other fan favorites in the 80's - 90's.

But something changed along the way, and for me personally, the strip lost it's lustre shortly after Postcards from the Edge, with Satan probably being the last story I genuinely enjoyed.
Following on from there, unfortunately, IMO the last time the character made any impact was when she hit the ground in My Name is Death.

The strip went from being an MVP traded between 2000AD and The Meg to something that became increasingly a background Thrill.
As the years went on, I began to enjoy Alan Grant's take on the character to a lesser degree, and even less so the subsequent writers.

Whats the general consensus? Plough on as is, or let Alan Grant (and it kinda has to be Alan Grant) write one last epic-ish tale and retire the character once and for all?

As an aside - I'm not really that bothered by recent 'youthful' depictions of Cass, it's all artistic license, and if Joe can regularly look 45 she can get away with 30.

Help! / Bags & Boards for older Progs
« on: 24 April, 2019, 10:28:53 AM »
Hi All,

Looking for a fair priced supplier of bags & boards for the older / larger Progs and Megs.

Comicare / Ultimate Guard are fine for comics from the last 15-20 years, but not for the older stuff.

Any help appreciated.

Film & TV / The Joker
« on: 04 April, 2019, 02:20:06 PM »
No comments on this yet?

I think the new trailer looks amazing - something different (for this particular genre).
Joaquin Phoenix was a superb choice for this role.

Could be this years 'Logan'.

Books & Comics / Walt Simonson's Ragnarok
« on: 02 April, 2019, 12:21:37 PM »
Good news for fans of good comics- living legend Walt Simonson will be bringing back modern classic Ragnarok for a further 6 issue series this summer:


Help! / 80s / 90s TV Horror Anthology
« on: 25 March, 2019, 02:25:35 PM »
Dear Hivemind- I need your help in identifying an episode from a late 80's / early 90's horror TV show.

What I know:
Definitely a 'one-off' episode from a horror anthology series (likely from either 'Tales from the Crypt', 'Tales from the Darkside' or 'Monsters')
Definitely an American cast.
I am 90% sure it was a 'Tales from the Crypt' episode, but can't find anything matching the story on the Wiki synopsis or a YouTube video.

Two high-school girls are lured to an abandoned fun house (or amusement park).
They proceed through a garish maze by descending through tunnel slides to get to the next stage / room.
Near the end it's revealed that they were lured there by a vengeful female classmate, and they escape at gunpoint down a final slide - straight into a brick wall.
Memorably, there is a sickening thud and a leak of blood (from the other side) as they smash into the wall.

Ring a bell with anyone?

Other Reviews / Simon Bisley Sketchbook 2018
« on: 09 January, 2019, 06:17:46 PM »
Got this as a stocking filler and poured over it on Christmas night with some tasty whiskey, just as Biz would have wanted.

Not on trend to be a fan of this type of artwork these days, but I still love his stuff. Always will.
Some 2000AD related content too- Dredd / Anderson and Slaine pieces I haven't seen before.

Worth a pick-up if it's your cuppa.

Off Topic / Objet de désir
« on: 27 September, 2018, 12:42:55 PM »
Now I've hit my 40's I find I'm starting to curb my nerdy ways.
The monthly comic pull list is a shell of its former glut.
No longer is a TV show or film given the benefit of the doubt simply because of the genre.
The Loot Crate subscription has long been cancelled.
Video game 'day one' purchases are no longer a concern at all.

No doubt finances are a factor here (I will be paying two mortgages until at least early 2019), but definitely a change in attitude too.

And yet. And yet.
There is a certain compulsion that draws me towards random purchases of otherwise useless tat.
It may end up gathering dust on a shelf. It may end up in a drawer, but Grud help me- I have to have it.

Anyone else afflicted by this seemingly intermittent bout of pure madness?

Recent items on my list of curios:

- Playmobil 'Stay Puft Marshmallow Man'. Status: Purchased. Already in a drawer.
- Lego City Pizza Van. Status: Purchased. Built, but already packed away with Lego collection.
- 'Twinkie the Kid' Funko Pop. Status: Ordered from Zavvi.
- Garbage Pail Kids "Oh the Horror-ible" card set. Status: Purchased on Ebay and in the post. NB- Postage was twice the cost of the cards.
- Super Mario Brothers pajamas by Pennys. Status: worn to bed last night.
- Classic Twilight Zone (black and white) action figures. Status: Looking online for a price that will allow me to sleep at night.

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