Archive for the Product Review Category

Review: Return of Wolverine #1

Posted in Comic Books, Product Review with tags , on September 20, 2018 by boccobsblog

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Today marks the return of everyone’s favorite cigar-chomping, baddie-impaling superhero, Wolverine. If you just said, “wait, what? Wolverine was dead?!” Then you should check out the Death of Wolverine. Check out the video trailer for more details:

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Details: Charles Soule
Penciler: Steve McNiven
Inker: Jay Leisten
Color Artist: Laura Martin
Letter: Joe Sabino

While beautifully drawn, the comic raises more questions than it answers. A few I had while reading:

Why are Wolvie’s claws glowing red hot? Was he in Hell?

What caused the wound on his side? (Muramasa blade?)

Why was the lunch lady wearing a lab coat? And why does she know how to suture a wound closed with a staple gun?

The lunch lady say, “I know why you wear blue and yellow.” Then Wolvie puts on black and red? Is he the real wolverine, or just a clone? Is that why he has no memories? Are they being uploaded into a clone body?

Too early to say much, we’ll have to let a few issues unfold, but I’m excited none the less.

 

Mangaka Review

Posted in Comic Books, Product Review with tags , , , on May 8, 2018 by boccobsblog

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The following is a review of the board game, Mangaka, by Jason Thompson (better known as Mockman). You might remember our review of Jason’s excellent D&D class, the Priestess (available on DM’s Guild). You’ll also recognize Jason’s distinctive art style from his hilarious D&D walk-through maps of classic adventure modules.

Mangaka

Mangaka (Japanese for a comic artist) is the “fast and furious game of drawing comics”. In Mangaka you play as manga artists trying to achieve fame in a comic world of ever-shifting tastes, trends, and fads. The game is very easy to learn and play and only has three rules. No, you read that correctly, Mangaka has just three rules:

  • Express your themes
  • Draw something in each panel
  • No more than three word balloons are allowed each round

Each player gains fame for following the rules, drawing their obsessions, and carrying out the special instructions on their theme cards. Notice that your drawing skill (or lack thereof) does not come into play. You do not need to be an artist to play or enjoy this game (in fact, we find the opposite to be true, the worse the artist, the more fun). After four progressively difficult rounds, each player will have a complete comic masterpiece suitable for framing or shaming.

The game has an obvious manga flavor, but can be enjoyed by anyone. The idea of drawing a comic strip is easy for anyone to pick up. With variant rules both in the rulebook and on the Mangaka website (mangakagame.com) and different difficulty modes, this game has a ton of replay value.

One aspect of this game that players will truly appreciate is that it can be played solo (or Han-Style for those in the know). It is hard to find board games that offer a one-player variant and this rule allows for maximum replay value. Aside from the obvious entertainment of solo-play, an aspiring manga artist could actually benefit from having to work under a timetable and forcing themselves to draw content that is outside of their comfort level.

Well-Supported Web Content

Mangakagame.com is an excellent resource that adds greatly to the value of the game. The site is routinely updated with frequently-asked questions and errata. There are also variant rules, a hilarious gallery of comics and art, and a place to download additional drawing paper to replenish the pad of comic cells included in the game.

Designers

Jason Bradley Thompson – serves as the game’s lead designer. Thompson is a talented artist and author; he wrote Manga: The Complete Guide (available from Random House), and also illustrated an exquisite collection of H.P. Lovecraft stories entitled, The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath & Other Stories (available from Mockman Press). Jason is also an avid player and fan of Dungeons & Dragons and has illustrated several humorous walk-through maps of famous D&D adventures like Tomb of Horrors and White Plume Mountain.

Thompson was aided in the production of the game by producer/graphic designer Jumana Al Hashal, interior game artist, Eric Muentes, and cover artist, Ike whose last name must be hidden from the Yakuza to protect his family.

Mangaka at a glance

  • 1-8 players, aged 12 and up (rules for a younger audience can be found on the website)
  • Takes about 30 – 60 minutes (longer for bigger groups, or if alcohol is involved)
  • Targeted at teens and up
  • You don’t need to be an artist to play

Game Components

  • 136 Theme Cards
  • 52 Trend Cards
  • 160 Fame Tokens
  • Comic Pages (blank)*
  • Rule Book

Mangaka is easy to learn, fast to play and will appeal to a diverse audience. Pick up your copy from Amazon, Japanime Games, or Mangakagames.com.

*Download additional comic pages here

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I cannot suggest this game enough. It is fun for families, gamers, and manga enthusiasts alike. Mangaka is easy to learn and quick to play. Give it a try!

Buy Mangaka

http://www.Mangakagame.com

About the Author – Andrew Hand is a designer/co-founder at Limitless Adventures.

Hirst Arts – Making 3D Terrain

Posted in Hirst Arts, Limitless-Adventures.com, Product Review, The Crafty DM, Uncategorized with tags , , on October 28, 2016 by boccobsblog

For some time now I’ve wanted to write about the Castle Molds from Hirst Arts. HA makes high-quality latex molds in the shape of medieval, Gothic, Roman, Egyptian, fantasy, and sci-fi architecture.

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Image from hirstarts.com

You cast the molds using any number of products: plaster of Paris, hydrostone, dental plaster, resin, etc. You then take the pieces and glue them together into buildings, ruins and dungeons which can be used as 3Dterrain for table top minis games or rpgs.

Think of Hirst Arts blocks like fantasy Legos. The only thing limiting you is your imagination.

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Image from hirstarts.com

Pros

  • Cheap- The molds cost 25- 30 USD and can be used forever. The quality is on par with more expensive terrain like Dwarven Forge.
  • Limitless Possibilities – With just a few molds you can create infinite dungeons, ruins and buildings for your game.
  • Increased Game Play- Visual players will light up when you reveal your 3D gamescape. Plus having the game in three dimensions makes some aspects easiler, line of sight and area of effect. Mind’s eye theater players may scoff at 3d terrain, but overall player’s in my games seem to really enjoy seeing their fantasy world brought into 3d.
  • Several Genres Available- You can get molds for numerous historical and sci-fi setting. Also the genres can be used together to create interesting overlap.
  • Ease of Use- I am not an artist by any stretch of the imagination, but even I can cast blocks, assemble them, and paint them into something that looks good.
  • Easy to Paint- The blocks paint up very well any even the most novice painter will see results. The blocks are very porous and show dry brushing very nicely.
  • Community of Support- Once you start into the Hirst Arts hobby there are several websites, podcasts, and videos out there to give you the support and inspiration to create amazing terrain.

Cons

  • Time Consuming- While the molds and the materials used are fairly cheap, casting blocks takes time (an hour to cast and a day to dry). And you will need to cast several times to create a building or a dungeon.
  • Fragile- If you use plaster of Paris your models will not be very strong, especially if you try to cast thin items like fences and doors.
  • Difficult to Transport- If you don’t host your game at your home, finding a way to get your models from point A to point B can be an issue. I use a copy box with sheets of bubble wrap from the post office.

If you can’t afford the majesty that is Dwarven Forge, Hirst Arts is an amazing way of creating 3D terrain for your fantasy roleplaying game. Here is an example of a dungeon that I made for FlatCon. It is a replica of The Tomb of the Sorcerer Thane, a Limitless Adventures Side Quest that I ran last weekend.

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Now that you have some sweet 3D terrain, do you need some D&D quest ideas?

Storm King’s Thunder Reviewed

Posted in D&D Fifth Edition, D&D Next, Dungeons and Dragons, Product Review with tags , , , , , , on September 2, 2016 by boccobsblog

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This is a spoiler free review. I have read the book, but not DM’d the adventure yet.

From Wizards:

Giants have emerged from their strongholds to threaten civilization as never before. Hill giants are stealing all the grain and livestock they can while stone giants have been scouring settlements that have been around forever. Fire giants are press-ganging the smallfolk into the desert, while frost giant longships have been pillaging along the Sword Coast. Even the elusive cloud giants have been witnessed, their wondrous floating cities appearing above Waterdeep and Baldur’s Gate. Where is the storm giant King Hekaton, who is tasked with keeping order among the giants?

The humans, dwarves, elves, and other small folk of the Sword Coast will be crushed underfoot from the onslaught of these giant foes. The only chance at survival is for the small folk to work together to investigate this invasion and harness the power of rune magic, the giants’ weapon against their ancient enemy the dragons. The only way the people of Faerun can restore order is to use the giants’ own power against them.

Our Thoughts:

The Good

  • The Art is amazing
  • The story is well thought out
  • The plot connects to all 5e published adventures (even MoP)

The Badass

  • A lot of fleshed out NPCs that could be reskinned for other campaigns.
  • The body count is high, really high

The Ugly

  • No player content
  • A lot of plots and NPCs (not George RR Martin level, but close)

All in all this is a solid campaign. There are quests and side quests to keep your party busy, and the art and cartography are beautiful. But, while I understand we’ve moved away from the days of splat books and endless feats, a few new spells, backgrounds, and player options go a long way.

Want to expand your SKT campaign even further?

Check out our SKT Encounters on DM’s Guild. You wont need to look up stats or roll treasure. Download 10 encounters, 30 further adventure hooks, and a new monster.

Visit our D&D 5e store for high quality, low priced products!

Expedition: The Roleplaying Card Game

Posted in Non-Collectable Card Game, Product Review with tags , , on April 28, 2016 by boccobsblog

 

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The gang over at Expedition have launched a new Kickstarter and it is doing great! Jump on now to grab a cool, fast-paced game (and hopefully some more stretch goals). There are only five days remaining in the Kickstarter.

What will you pledge get you? According to their Kickstarter page:

The Expedition Adventurer’s Kit includes:

  • 166 cards, enough for up to 6 adventurers and one (optional) Guide, including 10 adventurers, 80 abilities, 40 encounters, 30 loot and 6 helpers
  • 1x d20 die
  • 12x plastic health tracker clips
  • Box and quick start rules sheet (not pictured)
  • The Expedition app – available right now at app.expeditiongame.com on all phones and tablets, and for Android (iOS-specific app coming soon)
  • Potentially even more (at no extra cost to you) if we work together and reach our stretch goals

Dungeon Attack Kickstarter

Posted in Gaming Culture, Product Review with tags , , , on August 19, 2013 by boccobsblog

The guys from Attack Dice, the makers of When Zombies Attack, are funding their second game through Kickstarter. The newest game, Dungeon Attack, follows the same AD premise of fast paced, easy to learn, and easy on the wallet, but with a fantasy flavor.

Funding a game on Kickstarter is a great way to get the games for a cheaper price, get them weeks before they hit the store, and a chance to get exclusive content.

Curious about Dungeon Attack? The rules can be downloaded for free from AD’s website.

Check out the Dungeon Attack Kickstarter!

Wizards to Reprint 1974 D&D “White Box”

Posted in Dungeons and Dragons, Product Review with tags , , on February 21, 2013 by boccobsblog

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Holding true to their new motto, “Every Edition Available Again!”, Wizards of the Coast is reprinting the original D&D boxset. From Wizards.com:

 

A premium, deluxe edition of the Original D&D “White Box”!

The original Dungeons & Dragons boxed set was published by TSR, Inc. in 1974 and was the very first roleplaying game, introducing concepts that have persisted throughout later editions. It included three small rules booklets in a white box.

This deluxe, premium reprint of the original “White Box” features new packaging and includes the following seven booklets (plus, reference sheets):

  • Volume 1: Men & Magic
  • Volume 2: Monsters & Treasure
  • Volume 3: Underworld & Wilderness Adventures
  • Supplement I: Greyhawk
  • Supplement II: Blackmoor
  • Supplement III: Eldritch Wizardry
  • Supplement IV: Gods, Demi-Gods & Heroes

Each booklet features new cover art but is otherwise a faithful reproduction of the original, including original interior art.

Item Details
Item Code: 45390000
Release Date: November 19, 2013
Format: D&D Boxed Game
Price: $149.99; C$172.00
ISBN: 978-0-7869-6465-9
 

 I think it would be fun to own an run a campaign with, but a hundred and fifty dollars is expensive…