Though much of Hasbro’s upcoming plans for Star Wars remain under tight lock and key, the company did preview a handful of new figures during New York Comic Con. It’s not surprising that so few Star Wars figures are being shown considering just how secretive Disney and Lucasfilm are being about the upcoming sequel. Very few characters not shown in trailers or official photos have been teased or released previously, but that didn’t mean there weren’t a few exciting reveals this week.
To this point, the only classic trilogy character to get a new figure for The Force Awakens lines has been Chewbacca, but the Wookie’s best friend and co-pilot will soon join him. Old man Han Solo was the centerpiece of Hasbro’s Black Series unveilings at NYCC this week, and rightfully so. The iconic smuggler with a heart of gold has long been a fan favorite, and he’s one of the few returning heroes to have made an official appearance in promotion for The Force Awakens. Sure, there were some characters on display, too, but it’s hard not to feel a bit sentimental for a Han Solo figure based on a aged Harrison Ford.
For those of you wondering just how the previously announced Ultron and Hulkbuster Iron Man figures would play into the recent release of Disney Infinity 3.0, wonder no more. This upcoming March, Disney Infinity 3.0 will see a new add-on arrive in the form of Marvel Battlegrounds. The play set, which will be offered just like the Toy Box Takeover and Toy Box Speedway, will introduce a new four-player, Marvel-themed brawler into the fray. While it won't follow a similar path as Disney Infinity 2.0's Avengers story, Marvel Battlegrounds will indeed have a narrative, though that's not the most important news.
Joining Hulkbuster and Ultron will be an all-new Captain America The First Avenger figure. Featuring an unmasked Cap in a costume reminiscent of his Avengers: Age of Ultron costume (why call it the First Avenger then?), the figure will come in new pose, have new powers and abilities, and also look handsome as hell. This is as close as we're ever going to get to a Pixar-styled Chris Evans, so soak it in, everyone. He's just as dreamy and Dorito-y as ever, even in digitized form.
The Puzzle Quest franchise has come a long way from its humble beginnings as a Nintendo DS and PSP title. What started as a fantasy-themed, match-3 role-playing game has evolved a bit over the years to include franchises like Adventure Time and brands like Marvel. While D3 Go has been selective with how it expands the Puzzle Quest series, the Marvel Puzzle Quest branch has been a fairly big hit for the publisher on Facebook and mobile devices. So much so in fact, D3 is bringing the latest iteration to consoles later this year.
D3 Go and WayForward Games will be bringing mobile match-3 game Marvel Puzzle Quest: Dark Reign to consoles for the first time. Previously available only on Android, iOS and Facebook, Dark Reign was a free-to-play title that incorporated micro-transactions to open up roster spots, try to unlock rare characters and earn more of the coveted Iso-8. With the $14.99 price point comes the dismissal of those F2P transactions, and instead the full game will be open to players with few caveats. Unfortunately, one of those happens to be that the full roster won't be available at launch for any of the console ports.
At San Diego Comic-Con this past summer, Marvel unveiled its first ever collectible pins. Given the Disney connection, it was only a matter of time after Marvel was acquired by the Mouse House that it too would offer its own versions of the tradable pins that had been a mainstay for Disney fans for over 15 years. Yes, pins were at Disney well before the year 2000, but the pin trading collective really only got its start during the Millennium Celebration at Disney World. Pin trading had also found its way to other geeky conventions, like PAX, where it's been steadily expanding, but now that comic cons are getting in on the fun, there's almost nowhere you can go to escape.
I promised myself (and ComicsAlliance EiC Andrew Wheeler) that I wouldn't fall prey to pin collecting now that Marvel was in on the action. I bought a few sets at SDCC, but one set was for friends who couldn't make it, and the others I thought I'd pick up for my wife. She's only ever looked at them, as they've become part of my own collection now. I have become the thing I said I never would; I am a pin collector now. I thought maybe I'd only have to deal with my addiction once a year at SDCC, but Marvel's announced a new collection of pins to debut exclusively at New York Comic Con this coming week, and that's going to be a whole new problem for me.
This week marks the arrival of thousands of cosplayers, fans, and gamma ray-fueled heroes in New York City for New York Super Week --- starting today --- and the 10th annual New York Comic Con. The city will undoubtedly be sprawling with enthusiasts of every fandom, but NYCC and Super Week festivities aside, New York is already a treasure trove of geeky gems.
To help guide you through Gotham’s geek-friendly hangouts, the folks at Foursquare and ReedPOP have joined forces to create the Ultimate Geek Guide to New York --- an infographic map that highlights some nerd-tastic, comic-centric hidden gems, stores, bars, restaurants, and museums to visit during the week’s festivities.
October traditionally marks the end of the summer con season, when retailers, creators and exhibitors return to their caves for hibernation, secure in the knowledge that they have done everything they can to promote their wares. But before we all get our rest, the fitful sleep before the rattling of chains in January that signals the first email about registering for San Diego, there's one last stop: New York Comic-Con, coming at you on October 8 through 11, complete with a very fun roster of variant covers!
In addition to getting Andy Kubert's art for Dark Knight III on the cover of the con program, DC is marking the occasion by offering up six exclusive variants that you can grab at the Javits Center next month. But if you're not going to be there, don't worry too much: You can check 'em out right here.
Marvel went a bit light on TV at Comic-Con 2015, between Agent Carter and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s dual panel, and Marvel Animation, but we can always expect New York, home of the Defenders to deliver. Jessica Jones, Daredevil, the Agents and all the rest will be on hand for New York Comic-Con 2015, and so will we.
Convention season is upon us once more, which means thousands of comic book fans will descend on the hotels and convention centers of North America (and the world) to be consumed wholesale by nerd nirvana. They will stand in long lines, they will press through huge crowds, and they will eat a salty pretzel for lunch for three or four days in a row. And there will be panels. And that means Q&A sessions. And that means long, awkward questions from nervous and and overwhelmed fans.
We can't do anything to help with the lines, the crowds, or your sodium intake, but we do want to help make those Q&A sessions a little more comfortable, so we've put together seven simple suggestions to help attendees ask better questions. This makes life better for the questioners, the panelists, and everyone else in the room. Think of it as a little convention etiquette guide, and think of ComicsAlliance as your Emily Post-Crisis.
In October, DC launched Klarion, Ann Nocenti and Trevor McCarthy's new series re-imagining Jack Kirby's cult-favorite "witch boy". Klarion, in this incarnation, is a magical being from a parallel earth who lands in New York City and proceeds to act in the manner one might expect from a hyper-powered juvenile with a taste for chaos.
Nocenti and McCarthy have big plans for their strange little boy. CpmicsAlliance caught up with the creative team at New York Comic-Con to talk about decoding Kirby, planting secret messages in art, and letting the character lead the weirdness.
Takeshi Obata is an icon. His work on the horror manga phenomenon Death Note, with writer Tsugumi Ohba, defined horror for a generation of comic fans. The manga Hikaru no Go, with Yumi Hotta, spurred the ancient board game Go to sudden contemporary popularity in 1998. Another Ohba collaboration, Bakuman -- a manga about the creation of manga -- has over 15 million copies in circulation. Obata also illustrated the manga adaptation of All You Need is Kill, a military science fiction light novel by Hiroshi Sakurazaka that was recently adapted for the screen as Edge of Tomorrow.
And Obata's art is gorgeous. He handles Gothic triptychs and domestic scenes alike with incredible skill, bringing sociopaths, pop singers and teen artists to vibrant life. I keep copies of Death Note and Bakuman on my shelf of manga for "people who think they don’t like manga," because his work transcends the boundaries of fandom. He is a master, and he isn't even close to being done.
ComicsAlliance was thrilled to have the chance to speak with him at New York Comic Con 2014 about his work, his influences, and international success.
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