product review


Free Comic Book Day 2019

Free Comic Book Day - Saturday 4th May 2019 Time flies...Free Comic Book Day is here again, and this year it coincides with Star Wars Day. The cosplayers were out in force (pardon the pun) and the day had the makings of a great one, despite the inclement weather.I tried to do my usual this year but with a couple of minor changes due to littlun wanting to come and do some drawing. Usually I head to Orbital first to grab a hand-picked selection of comics, followed by GOSH and then Forbidden Planet as they usually have some kind of 2000AD related signing event.This year though, the first port of call was GOSH for the kids' comic drawing event. There were three or four professional comics artists and writers on hand to guide the youngsters through creating their own five or six frame story. All the kids seemed to have great fun and the artsists were great as they let the children's imaginations run riot but guided them on how to present their ideas on the page. It was a good 45 minutes session for my son. Unfortu

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King Conan

Following on from the post a couple of days ago, here is my collection of King Conan comics related stuff. Again, like with the Conan, Kull and Solomon Kane collections, these are the items released by Dark Horse when they held the franchise for Robert E Howard's stable of comic characters.Dark Horse were nothing if not thorough with their release schedules for the characters they held the rights for over the last ten years or so. King Conan was well represented and had more released for him, even though the tales were spin-offs from the main Conan storylines etc., than either Solomon or Kull.As per the Conan blog entry, first up are the Marvel reprints...The Chronicles of King Conan : 11 volumesUnusually for King Conan, as a character, there were no Savage Sword of or Saga of series that I am aware of, so I can only report on the Chronicles of King Conan reprints that were collected into the colour trades. There were eleven volumes (which surprised me a bit as I didn't think there were that many) of King Con

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Conan

Another early posting today as most of the work had already been done on this over the weekend.The final Robert E Howard character I have a comic collection for is Conan. Actually, make that two collections as I have one for Conan and another for King Conan. I will list these separately, so this post is primarily just for the Conan series.Like the Kull and Solomon Kane collected series, Dark Horse did the same with Conan; in fact  Conan was the precursor to the other two collections, so really I should have featured him first, but decided to save the best, in my opinion, until last. As per the other collections, I will read the colour Marvel reprints, followed by the Savage Sword black and whites, and then the Dark Horse written monthly runs, mini-series and one-shots. Hopefully I can remember to jot down the adventure hooks for possible future use.First up are the Marvel reprints...The Chronicles of Conan : 34 volumesThese volumes collect all of the Marvel monthly run comics plus a few other one-offs fr

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Red Sonja : She Devil with a Sword

First post of the week, and I am still carrying on with the comic book based theme as FCBD is rapidly approaching (Saturday 4th May). I still have posts on Conan and King Conan to follow this one over the next couple of days, and one or two similar before getting back onto gaming and my miniatures collections next week, hopefully.Following on from the Kull and Solomon Kane summaries, here is a similar one for my Red Sonja collection. This didn't appear last week as it took an age to find and enter all the details - I spent a fair bit of the weekend tracking stuff down and collating the details for this post and the Conan ones to follow over the next couple of days. That said, as most of the work for Red Sonja was done over the weekend, it meant I could post earlier today as most of the details had already been added to this entry.This is a far more extensive collection than either of her Robert E. Howard stable mates but I didn't actually buy everything that was available. I avoided the Marvel reprint collect

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The Saga of Solomon Kane

After completing the reading of Kull, I will move onto another of Robert E. Howard's characters; Solomon Kane. I have to admit to never having read any comics or books about this character in the past - I only have the James Purefoy movie version to go from.The film was OK but I found it fell into too many typical fantasy tropes and it became too much of a pastiche for my liking. That said, as I have never read anything about the character perhaps that is how he and his world is portrayed? I am looking forward to reading these comics anyway as he is a new character for me to explore.Like with the Kull comics, I will start off with the original Marvel colour reprints by Dark Horse. These seem to be a good starting point for any major character as Marvel do tend to look after their REH characters quite well; they always seem to gather the best writers and artists to the teams that portray them.To follow up on the colour stories, I will again go to the black and white Savage Sword equivalents; The Saga of Solomo

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Kull the Conqueror

As you already know, I am a bit of a comics fan; 2000AD, Judge Dredd, some Robert E Howard characters (Conan, Red Sonja, Kull and Solomon Kane), the Alien/Predator universe and a few other minor one-offs that looked good at the time. Although, in my youth, I read some superhero comics, they never really did anything for me, except perhaps Batman; I want to believe that my hero(ine) can, in theory, die and not come back. I know that the majority of comics characters will not die (due to the money they produce for their creators and distributors) but I at least want that possibility to be there to make things more "believable".A few years ago I started to re-read all of my 2000ADs and Judge Dredd Megazines - some major characters of the less developed kind do die here, so the stories often keep you on your toes, especially if they are tales of a fixed length and not one of the ongoing, well-established series. I have managed to complete my reading up until the end of 2014 so far and then bagged, boarded and box

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Top Trumps Quiz with a Twist - Dinosaurs

Another random entry for today. Whilst I had my youngest son at home with me and the time to actually have some quality time together this Easter weekend we got out a few games that haven't been played in a while. I have already mentioned the game of Risk at which he thrashed me earlier, but we also managed to follow that up with a few games of the Top Trumps Quiz on Dinosaurs.This is not directly wargaming related but it is a game and can be used for cherry picking details to use for gaming, so I think it can feature here as many RPGs feature dinosaurs. Back in the very early 80s (way before the movie Up), I created an AD&D world wherein all cities were situated on top of those Venezuelan style table-top mountains. Each mountain featured antediluvian creatures and races of beings, much like in The Lost World by Conan Doyle, as adversaries and random encounters to those who had established the city states. One in particular featured a city of dwarfs who went to war on the backs of ceratopsians.I have alwa

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Risk

This post is a bit of an ad-hoc one as it came to me as a bit of a surprise. The girls took themselves off to the cinema this afternoon and my eldest went out to see a football match with his friends, so I was at home with just my youngest son for company. As it is Easter, we were just kicking around the house in a post-chocolate egg trance and at a loss for things to do until he suggested we played Risk (he had seen the box on top of the book shelves), At first I thought "Oh no, not that old chestnut", but then I realised it would be an ideal time to teach him how to play the game and dust off something that hadn't been touched in nigh on 25 years.My version of the game dates from around 1978, and seems to be an American version (so the picture above is merely representative of my set which is battered beyond belief and ineptly repaired. It had been played to death during the eighties and then only once or twice in the nineties before being consigned to the top of the bookshelf.As it was a training game, I d

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Card Caddy Product Review

The Card Caddy helps you take your gaming on the go. There are a variety of sizes sure to fit your needs and your games. All the Card Caddy sizes are big enough to hold sleeved cards and once opened the two halves fit together to give you a spot for a discard pile. The triple decker can hold up to 100+ sleeved cards and comes with two poker chips. The caddies are modular and can be connected to each other. You can get a score track, or a container to hold dice and other gaming bits. A Quick Review of the Card Caddy: The Card Caddy helps make your gaming more portable. It is great for travelling or just keeping a game in your backpack. You know, just in case you need it. The single decker is small and works well for CCG players to keep your decks safe and accessible. The triple decker with some added modules is nice for toting around games with more than just card components. And though it is a bit bigger it can help you track your score and hold everything you need for a couple different card-driven ga

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'Adeptus Titanicus': An Opinion of the Redux Version

The new edition of 'Adeptus Titanicus' was released a week or so ago, and having had great nostalgia for the original 1988 version (ye gads, has it been that long), I felt compelled to pick up this new release. I have to confess, my love for GW ended years ago when the company inexplicably dropped its support for the 'Specialist Games' line. Originally kept as a sort of boutique niche for 'veteran gamers' (whatever that means), Specialist Games had under its umbrella many of the great fringe titles that GW had created over the past 30 years. Mordheim, Warmaster, Battlefleet Gothic, Epic, Gorkamorka, these are just a few of the great games that were nestled under the 'Specialist Game' badge. Nonetheless, mismanagement and benign neglect caused the line to falter and it was quietly deleted from the corporate website. (Note: There is a 'Specialist Games' section at Forge World, but it's a shadow of the original catalogue.) I found that this decision, along with GW's IP suicide of killing off Warha

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