Tag Archives: Marvel

Marvel Comics May 2024

Intorduction

A week late, but I finally finished my comics articles for this month with Marvel Comics May 2024. But, I still consider that a win. With how nuts things at school went over the last two weeks and summer coming in about a month, I just need to hold the line until then. Hopefully you all understand. I promise to make the summer far more productive. Until then, enjoy what I content I can provide.

Amazing Spider-Man #47 and #48 (Legacy #941 and #942)

Writer: Zeb Wells, Artist: JRJR. I promised to avoid ASM until Zeb Wells no longer wrote the book. However, if I skipped this one and Incredible Hulk (because the art is just not great, that left me with only 3 comics for Marvel May 2024. While not as offensive as some of the recent stories, these issues don’t give me the good Spidey vibes that I enjoy. Still, I hold onto hope that the worst is behind us. My verdict: Decent.

The Avengers #13 (Legacy #779)

Writer: Jed McKay, Artist: Francesco Mortarino. I saw that Marvel put McKay on X-Men starting with the new series. When I looked it up, Redditers seem to think that means that an Avengers vs. X-Men crossover is imminent. I don’t know about that, but this issues is probably one of the weakest ones of McKay’s tenure so far. Not bad, by any stretch, but not as great as most of the issues in this run. Now, the Blood Hunt tie in that I have no interest in reading. My verdict: Good.

Fantastic Four #19 (Legacy #712)

Writer: Ryan North, Artist: Carlos Gomez. Marvel took Guardians away from me again. And no She-Hulk this time around means that the most consistently great book in the lot is Fantastic Four. This one reads like an old noir crime novel that eventually reveals as a bungled attempt by Trapster to use a cosmic cube. An absolute blast from cover to cover. My verdict: Great.

The Immortal Thor #10 (Legacy #771)

Writer: Al Ewing, Artist: Carlos Magno. As you know, I loved Ewing’s Hulk. He wrote the book so masterfully and told a story for the ages. It took me some time to warm up to this version of Thor, but I enjoyed the last two issues and think I finally understand what he’s trying to accomplish here. And, I’m fully on board with it. My verdict: Great.

The Incredible Hulk #11 and #12 (Legacy #792 and #793)

Writer: Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Artist: Danny Earls and Nic Klein. I mentioned Hulk earlier. The story of this title is amazing. I never thought it possible, but PKJ not only continues the horror vibe of Ewing’s Hulk, he actually amps it up a few levels. But, the art is so bad that it detracts from my enjoyment of the book. Spidey’s starting to come around with the story. Maybe they’ll finally find another artist for this one. My verdict: Story, great. Art, let’s move on.

The Verdict

I actually enjoyed all of the books this month on their own for different reasons. Spider-Man is crawling back to respectability. Avengers, Fantastic Four, and Thor all continue their good runs. And, the Hulk’s storyline is fabulous. Now, if only Marvel can iron out the slight wrinkles.

Cover images taken from the Mothership, mostly.

Marvel SNAP May 2024: A Blink in Time

Introduction

I meant to post the Mario Honorable Mention article yesterday. I wanted the video to accompany the article. Then I thought I might post it today. However, with no time to narrate the video, I needed to make a decision, so I posted the article without the video. I plan to release the videos next month once school lets out and I have the time. The other plan this week was the comic articles. Smack dab in the middle of it I’m putting the Marvel SNAP May 2024 article.

New Locations

Other than Scarlet Witch, Magik or other characters who change the location, I don’t see the point of Cancun. On the other hand, Panoptichron works very well with quite a few strats in the game. I can see people having a lot of fun with that one.

New Characters

Blink

Image 1 of 5

On Reveal: Swap the last card you played with a higher-Cost card from your deck.

I played Blink to finish the weekend quest. I like the targeted abiilty and thin she’ll slot nicely into my On Reveal or Wong/Odin deck. When I watched a streamer unlock Nocturne, I said, “I don’t know if she’s good, but she looks like fun.” That more or less paid off as expected. Sage can give one hell of a payoff, Namora is another decent On Reveal and Sasquatch is going right in both my “Ones” deck and my Skaar deck. He’ll get played easily in both decks.

The Verdict

After two months of less than stellar updates, last month and Marvel SNAP May 2024 bring some fun back to the game. I gave up trying to collect the conquest variants and this one doesn’t excite me none, either. But, I like the rest of it and with Deadpool most likely coming in July, I don’t see myself giving up the game again any time soon.

Marvel Snap April 2024: Zeroes to Heroes

Introduction

True to my word, I played almost no Marvel Snap during the Avengers season. I cared nothing about the cards or characters. I couldn’t even muster the ability to care enough about the Conquest variant to play for that. Instead, I saved my money. I’m glad I did because Marvel Snap April 2024 season revolves around one of my favorite groups, The Thunderbolts. Sure, the lineup is from the MCU and I prefer the Green Goblin led team, but I’ll take what I can get from all this cross promotion.

New Locations

Thunderbolts Tower looks liked a placeholder from datamining. Yeah, upon further research, it is -2 power after turn 5. If you’re playing some kind of junk, this could be a fun location to play. Otherwise, I will mostly just play around the debuff. Castle Zemo also favors junk, so maybe they’re trying to push that archetype this time around.

New Characters

Screenshot-2024-04-01-173525

Image 1 of 6

All of these cards look like tons of fun. I think my favorites are Valentina and USAgent. Many of the 6 drops are fairly high power with some upside, so getting one of them in play 2 turns early with some draw back looks good to me. And, USAgent punishes big decks, though I admit that I haven’t seen a ton of them. Maybe the meta got big again with the latest season. Who knows? Zemo gives you card advantage and the possibility of a combo breaker. Red Hulk can be a surprise drop against a Sunspot type deck. White Widow forces the opponent (if they care) to one zone for a couple of turns, so that’s nice. And, I haven’t quite figured out how to use Red Guardian just yet, but he can zap a Nightcrawler and freeze him in a location.

The Verdict

I already know that I plan to get the Battle Pass for Marvel Snap April 2024. The cards are fun. The locations are fine. And, I admit to actually missing “war with added features” from my daily rotation. I’ll see you out there, fellow SNAPers!

Cards taken from Marvel Snap Zone.

March 2024 Marvel Comics

Introduction

Missed another deadline in March. Unsure why this happens every year around this time. I heard that trauma can resurface as a memory even if you can’t remember the event or events. I mean, that’s as likely as anything. Then again, maybe it’s just hangover from winter hibernation. Either way, March 2024 Marvel Comics comes two days late.

I skipped a couple of books again this month. Two, you know. I want to get the entire run of “Gang War” since I accidentally skipped a month in DCBS. Likewise, I’m so far behind in X-Men I don’t think I’ll ever catch up. Finally, Dr. Strange #12 didn’t fit with #13 and Venom #31 paired with Carnage #5 (which I didn’t order) for a two part story.

Decent

Black Panther 9

Image 1 of 3

Writer: Eve L. Ewing, Art: Chris Allen and Mack Chater

Black Panther fell off a bit this month. I can’t explain why. But it just didn’t hit as well as it had been. As I read, I noticed that Punisher isn’t a legacy numbered title. I know that it’s a “new Punisher”, but that still surprised me. Also, I forgot how wordy J. Michael can be, probably from his time on television and movies. His Cap hits all the right notes, but lacks the edge of some of my other favorite Cap writers.

Great

Avengers 10 and 11

Image 1 of 5

Writer: Jed McKay with various artists

Avengers 10 ended the previous story with a bang. The only reason I moved them to good is because 11 followed up a little stale. Doctor Strange assembles the Secret Defenders (an odd ball group, but necessary) to battle a role playing game that actually draws from the occult. Fun story so far. Everything I said about Hulk last month holds this month, especially the art. Goodness, Marvel, take better care of my boys Spidey and Hulk. I saw Al Ewing came back for an issue of Venom. I think they did it to give Gronbekk time to focus on the Venom/Carnage crossover. Ewing writes a decent story, but nothing on the level of his actual run. Speaking of Ewing, his Thor is starting to take shape and I think will soon get up to great.

Great

Writer: Ryan North, Art: Carlos Gomez
Writer: Rainbow Rowell, Art: Andres Genolet

Last month, no She-Hulk. This month two issues and no Guardians. Not sure if it’s Marvel shipping schedule, DCBS, or my screw up. Oh well, There’s not much more that I can say about She-Hulk at this point. They just found the perfect writer for the character and I enjoy everything about the title. Fantastic Four leads with a shocking discovery and crafts a great narrative around that discovery. Also, just a fun title right now.

The Verdict

Unlike DC and Spawn/TMNT, March 2024 Marvel Comics takes a bit of a step back. None of them are bad, but most of them are just solid stories with good art. I suppose we could have worse problems in our comics reading lives. Until next time, Zombies, Excelsior!

Images taken from the mothership.

Marvel Snap March 2024: Avengers vs. X-Men

Introduction

For some reason, my comics have been coming later the last couple of months. I still receive them, just a week later than before. Therefore, my usual schedule of comics reviews on the first week of the month no longer works. Thankfully, Marvel SNAP updates their new season during the first week of the month. So, I have at least one article for this week. I forgot what Marvel SNAP March 2024 was, but then I looked it up and we get Avengers vs. X-Men this month.

We started Mario in March last year. I plan to continue this year. I need to make the banner for Mario in March and plan out the rest of the month. A switch to Marvel in March was considered, but I think that might work better in May (closer to Deadpool release), so Maro in March, it remains. Keep coming back this month for quality Mario content!

New Locations

Utopia looks like a misprint from the data mine. Sure enough, I looked it up. It should say that 3 and 4 cards cost 1 less. Average cost savings that really helps certain decks. Certainly, every time I encounter the location, my opponent will be running nothing but 3 and 4 cost cards in their deck. I love Krakoa. Anything that adds power is a good thing in my mind. yes, I’ve become a Marvel SNAP size queen ever since Skaar released.

New Characters

Mockingbird

Image 1 of 5

Costs 1 less for each card you have in play that didn’t start in your deck.

I love my energy generation. Those of you around when the Djinn released know I thought they might end up having to nerf the location. Never happened, but I know that I giggle every time it shows up in game. So, Hope will make it into several of my decks. Cannonball can be very powerful against an aggro deck. Also, I think that his ability is just about the most flavorful lore wise that I’ve seen. Pixie just feels like chaos to me. I don’t see myself playing her very much. Likewise, I don’t play many decks that add cards, so Mockingbird will most likely only get played if I need to for a quest. War Machine, on the other hand, costs 4, so he gets the Utopia bump. Plus, it always annoys me when I can’t play a card and I paint myself into a corner late game. He gives my dumb ass an out.

The Verdict

After a great January and a so-so February, Marvel SNAP March 2024 continues the slight downward trend of the seasons. Heck I don’t even care all that much about the special Conquest variant this month. However, without giving too much away, next month looks fun. I mean, you can Google it yourself if you want. Until then, see you in game, fellow SNAPers.

Images SNAPped from Marvel SNAP Zone.

Marvel SNAP January 2024: Planet Hulk

Introduction

I saw last month that they planned to bring Planet Hulk to Marvel SNAP January 2024. This made me incredibly excited. Planet Hulk is my favorite story in comics, maybe ever. I loved the entire Greg Pak run of Hulk and Planet Hulk especially.

Yes, Immortal Hulk brought the Green Goliath back to his former heights after some lean years. But, I still think I prefer Pak’s take on Hulk and it bore the “Incredible” modifier instead of the new “Immortal” tagline. I mean, honestly, I’m just splitting hairs at this point. So, let’s take a look at the update.

New Locations

The Great Portal plays right into the Skaar deck. By giving you another 10 cost card to play, you reduce his cost even more. But, we’ll discuss that in the next section. Crown City, too, favors a powerful deck, as +4 to adjacent locations is pretty damn good in a game that sometimes comes down to every point of power. That thing is gonna set off some intense battles in the middle.

New Cards

Caiera

Image 1 of 6

Ongoing: Your 1 and 6-Cost cards can’t be destroyed.

Wow. I say. Wow. I already played Skaar to finish up the weekend quest and that card is powerful in the right shell. Who doesn’t want a zero cost 11 power card? Throw in Shuri and Taskmaster and the numbers get big quick in that deck. If I ever pull Caiera, I’m putting her in my “Ones” deck because screw your Killmonger, Bud. Herc is fun, but expensive, so unless you put him with Zabu, you only get a couple of moves to take advantage of. As previously mentioned, I don’t play much disco except to finish quests, so Miek isn’t a priority. Beta Ray Bill, as in the comics, is just another version of Thor. But, the Grandmaster opens up a whole new realm of possibilities that I hope I get a chance to discover. Overall, a strong batch of cards that I’ll have a ton of fun with, I think.

The Verdict

I think that I’m going to enjoy Marvel SNAP January 2024 more than I did last month. And, honestly, that’s saying something. I branched out to play some Conquest last month and got the Thor Hellfire Gala variant. I pushed at the end of the month up to Gold in the main play mode. That’s probably my ceiling, but I already played a ton this weekend to finish the Skaar quest and I’m planning my Conquest, uh, conquest to get that Ghost Rider variant.

Marvel Vs. Capcom Infinite First Impressions

Introduction

Would you believe it took this long for me to come up with Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite first impressions? Of course you do. You’ve been here long enough to know that we take a while to get around to things sometimes. Honestly, I fully intended to cover this game when it first released. If I look back at my notes, I’m sure I’ll find at least one mention of the game in there over the last five years.

Then, I fell victim to the online troll factory that slammed the game as “not as good as the others” and it fell off of my radar. I genuinely forgot it existed until I went searching for a way to play MvC 2 and found out that I can buy the deluxe edition on Steam for like 11 bucks. Or I could. Looks like I missed the sale by a day. Hmm, that puts a new wrinkle into things.

Well, Isn’t That A Pickle?

I’m not paying 40 bucks for something that will be 8 or 11 again most likely by the end of the month. Instead, I’m gonig to set up an alert for the next time it goes on sale and we’ll all have to wait for my Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite first impressions. Until then, I’ll keep playing X-Men Arcade.

X-Men Arcade (1992): Noob’s Way Back

Introduction

After I planned X-Men for this week to make up for my lack of planning when I missed the monthly order on DCBS for this month, I wondered how to fit a single title into a week’s worth of articles? Then, I came up with a brilliant idea. What better way to promote “New Decade, New Games” than with a discussion of decades old games? And, so, to start this week of X-Men, I bring you the 1992 classic X-Men arcade game.

Luckily, what’s old is new again and my generation gets to call the shots on retro. Therefore, arcades are back (mostly in the form of barcades, but kids are welcome at the one around here) and I don’t have to explain to kids these days what it means to wait your turn in a crowded and sweaty mass of people for your turn to get your ass kicked by the local Mortal Kombat II expert.

Even Grandpa Joe says, “Finish Them” to the kids these days.

About the Game

This game came out the same time as other games like it. You take a popular IP like X-Men, The Simpsons, or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, slap a few of the characters on to a cabinet with 4 controllers, make it look like the cartoon of that same IP, and people played it for hours. My personal shame is I spent my future kid’s inheritance one quarter at a time and this game swallowed many of those quarters.

I have no idea even what genre they called it. Simply based on the mechanics, I’d call it a side scrolling beat ’em up because that’s what happens on the screen. You walk sideways, beat ’em up, then walk sideways some more, then beat ’em up, etc. Eventually, you arrive at a boss that takes more coordination (and often more quarters), and guess what. Yep, you beat ’em up, too. Take a look at my expert game play in the video below.

*insert video*

Sorry for the poor quality. Was testing out the streaming set up. Future videos will be better, I promise.

So What’s Fun About That?

Honestly, not much. Playing the game by yourself takes away most of the joy of these games. You want to play with at least one other person. Preferably, you find 3 other friends to play, but the magic of the arcade is that you can meet people and make friends very easily around these arcade cabinets. Because you are there face to face, it makes it much more difficult to throw random insults about the guy’s mother without getting your ass kicked.

Yes, I’m Gran Torinoing it again.

The Verdict

Playing the game again verified what I remember. While fun solo, playing X-Men Arcade with friends is the way to go. I wonder if anyone has figured out a way to play over network on MAME. If so, reach out and we can beat up some baddies as the X-Men!

Marvel SNAP December 2023: Hellfire Gala

Introduction

The first week of the month generally means time for comic reviews. I promise that they’re coming. The comics arrived in the mail. I sorted them. I need to read them and review them. Before the end of the week. Besides, when I logged in earlier, the game reminded me of the Marvel SNAP December 2023 update.

They went with the Hellfire Gala this time. Without a major TV or movie release, I suppose they decided to take a cue from the comics this time. Though, I think the Hellfire Gala was a couple of months ago because right now they’re doing the “Fall of X” story line in the books. I forgot to order my comics for December, so maybe next month I finally get caught up on X-Men then.

New Locations

Neither of these locations wows me a ton. I like the idea of extra energy but rarely feel like I get to use it regularly. Perhaps by exploiting that imbalance each turn, I can play cards a turn earlier. Feels like a “win more” strategy. The white palace gives you a copy of an expensive card. Big deal.

New Cards

Selene

Image 1 of 4

On Reveal: Afflict the lowest-Power card in each player’s hand with -3 Power.

None of these cards speaks to me like the ones from the previous month. I generally don’t play buff decks, so Shaw and Havok won’t see much play from me. I like the idea of Blob as a troll card at the end of the game. I see no utility in Selene at all. She just feels really underpowered. Maybe late game if you haven’t played either of your Gobbys and you hit one of their bigger cards with it. So, some utility, I suppose.

The Verdict

The previous month interested me more than Marvel SNAP December 2023. I will still spend cash on the rewards track because I always finish it and it feels like good value. But, I doubt that I’ll play any of the cards other that to complete the special quests that they give you monthly to entice you to play the cards. Hey, I don’t mind the treadmill.

Pictures SNAPed from Marvel SNAP Zone.

Higher Further Faster: Marvel SNAP

Introduction

Just like the new Marvels movie, Marvel SNAP challenges us to go “Higher Further Faster”. Somehow I missed the last two updates for the game. But, I remember in time for this one. The update releases in a couple of days. I must say. It looks fun.

In one of my previous updates, I said that X-23 might alone bring me back to the game. While I played enough over the last two months to finish the rewards track and get her card, I have yet to play her in any one of my decks. Oh well, however it happened, I came back to the game.

New Locations

The Djinn also gives you +2 energy next turn.

This feels like a location that people will rush. Me, a filthy casual, already have the idea of Quicksilver and Domino and you’re off to the races. I have a hunch that we might see some sort of nerf on this one in the first few days. Maybe you only get a Djinn the first time you play a card or something along those lines.

I’m sure there’s some utility to this location that I’m missing. But, it just feels like one of those annoying locations that will reward my opponent and punish me. Yes, I’m one of those players who sees conspiracy in these types of games. 200 cards in your Magic deck and you still draw every removal and your stupid Agony whatever. FOH.

New Cards

Martyr

Image 1 of 4

At the end of the game, move to a location that LOSES you the game (if possible)

Wow.

Seriously. I see only utility and almost no draw back for all of these cards. I’m putting Martyr in my “Ones” deck. I fill all of my locations with that deck regularly, so there’s no place for it to move. Annihilus is perfect tech against the goblins and also The Hood and that stupid location that takes one power away each turn. Ms. Marvel belongs in my “Ongoing” deck. The only one that will probably end up screwing with me is Gladiator. With my luck, he’s guaranteed to pull their highest power card every time.

The Verdict

This update lives up to its “Higher Further Faster” motto. I love every one of the new cards introduced. I’m not sure about the location that transforms, but the other one seems very exploitable. See you in a couple of days, SNAPers!