Aug 122013
 
dust adventures

Modiphius

MODIPHIUS Announces DUST ADVENTURES

Roleplaying in Paolo Parente’s DUST Universe!

British publisher Modiphius Entertainment has announced a licensing deal with Paolo Parente’s DUST Studio to create a tabletop roleplaying game set in the DUSTuniverse.

 

Scheduled for Spring-Summer 2014, DUST Adventures will consist of a core rulebook and setting guide and will be followed by supplements and campaigns. The books will feature both new artwork as well as stunning photography of DUST miniatures.

 

The campaigns will also feature DUST Tactics and DUST Warfare missions allowing fans of the miniatures games and roleplayers alike to enjoy the DUST universe in new ways. The system being written for DUST Adventures draws heavily on the elegant systems of DUST Tactics, uses the same familiar dice, and aims to easily bring characters from DUST Tactics in to the roleplaying game or roleplaying characters in to your DUST Tactics or Warfare games.

 

DUST Adventures RPG

 

Campaigns will explore the background behind the major events in the DUST universe as well as presenting new storylines for players. Allowing players to create heroes from the Allies, the SSU, or independent factions, the game system is designed for both first time roleplayers as well as offering advanced rules for experienced players.

 

Modiphius recently launched the Achtung! Cthulhu game line via Kickstarter and is producing a cross-over book called , which let’s players mix characters from both universe’s in a terrifying mission beyond their worlds. This book will be compatible with the DUST Adventures roleplaying game, DUST Tactics and DUST Warfare.

 

For more information on DUST Adventures please sign up on the official webpage:www.modiphius.com/dust-adventures.html where you can also join in with playtesting and development!

 

For press information please contact us via http://www.modiphius.com/contact.html

 

Chris Birch
Modiphius
 

 

 

Aug 062013
 
SU_header-logo

As you all know, I’m a HUGE advocate for gaming in education.  My  experiences with my children opened my eyes to the reality of RPGs as a curriculum tool.

Currently, Seekers Unlimited has a very interesting Kickstarter campaign going that is taking this idea to the next level.  I have attached the press release.

Please give this a look!

Thanks!

-Dan

Edu-LARP Comes to Kickstarter!!!

Contact: Rosalind Helfand

Phone: 310-869-5749
Email: rozhelfand@gmail.com
Web: http://seekersunlimited.com

Revolutionary New Learning Tool “Edu-LARP” Goes to Kickstarter

Teachers and Students in Los Angeles and Nationwide Will Benefit from This Game Changing Campaign
LOS ANGELES, CA—July 26, 2013—While communities across the United States mourn the state of education, the non-profit Seekers Unlimited is changing the very nature of education for the better with Live Action Role Playing games or LARPs. Seekers Unlimited has been testing its educational LARPs in classrooms in Los Angeles for over a year. Now Seekers wants to bring six of its “edu-LARPs” to the nation through a game changing Kickstarter campaign. People who believe that kids should love learning and succeed in school are helping Seekers to reach its goal of raising $8,000 by August 30, 2013.

Live action role-playing, or play pretend, has been around since the dawn of humanity, but only recently are people realizing that it’s a powerful learning tool. Edu-LARPs invoke the power of play pretend to teach subjects like math, history, and science. What’s more fun: reading about Benjamin Franklin or being Benjamin Franklin for a day? Kids get out of their chairs and interact with one another as they become characters in stories with goals that require them to solve problems, collaborate, and retain information.

Seekers Executive Director Aaron Vanek believes that edu-LARP will reinvigorate the traditional classroom, stating, “Seekers Unlimited plays to excite education like punk rock motivated music.

Past Seekers edu-LARPs include “Hit Seekers” where students used math to make it in the music industry, and “Mesopotamia” where students became ancient Mesopotamian characters like governors, merchants, and priests to gain a deeper understanding of the “Cradle of Civilization.”

Now Seekers has developed six classroom tested science themed edu-LARPs. Seekers donates most of its services since schools have little or no funds for innovative learning activities. By supporting the Kickstarter campaign, donors will make it possible for Seekers to share these new edu-LARPs with the nation and continue its work.

Improving education is not easy nor simple, but it is imperative that we press on. With people’s help, we can lift mountains,” Aaron continues.

The science edu-LARPs to be funded for distribution by Kickstarter include:

* The Great Phlogiston Debate: Students role-play scientists active at the end of the Age of Enlightenment.
* Noir: Students role-play detectives, forensic scientists, and suspects in a series of possible crimes.
* Element Heroes: Students stop villains with super powers based on the elements.
* Monster Maker: Students learn chemistry in a Dr. Frankenstein scenario.
* Be Your Own Planet!: Students create their own star systems and protect them from interstellar dangers.
* Balloon Race: Students learn about forces and gravity through racing balloons.

Educators, game designers and community members are speaking out about the difference that edu-LARP can make to education if people pitch in.

Sarah Lynne Bowman, Ph.D., is the author of  The Functions of Role-playing Games: How Participants Create Community, Solve Problems, and Explore Identity .  Bowman, who also serves on the Seekers Board of Directors, strongly believes in edu-LARP, stating, “LARPing has changed my life in all facets: professionally, personally, socially, academically. Role-playing allows us to explore unfamiliar concepts and portray new roles that transcend our normal reality. I want to share the transformative power of LARP with the next generation.

Graydon Schlichter, co-designer of numerous LARPs and Director or Publicity for Evertide Games says, “Teachers are pressured to prepare students for tests rather than educate them, or even better, open their minds and invite them to educate themselves. Seekers Unlimited, through the edu-LARPs it creates, gives educators additional tools to reach students, further exposing them to the reality that there is more to learning than bubble-tests and vocabulary sheets.

Besides the great feeling contributors will get for helping to bring edu-LARPs to the nation, Seekers Unlimited is offering a number of perks to its Kickstarter donors.

The perks include experiences like:

* LARP Design 101: A four-hour seminar with our LARP designers to help you design your own LARP.
* Name Branding: Name a character, thing, or place in one of Seekers’ edu-LARPS.
* Basic Larper: Copies of original LARPs “Secret Ante” by Aaron Vanek and “Exodus 22:18” by Michael Tice.
* Edu-LARPs: Receive one or more of the new science edu-LARPs.
* Your Own Custom Designed and Produced LARP
To donate to Seekers Unlimited’s Kickstarter campaign, visit http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/160286787/creating-educational-live-action-role-playing-game. Seekers is also available on Facebook and Twitter @SeekersUnLtd. More information about Seekers Unlimited and how you can get involved is also available at http://seekersunlimited.com/

Aug 062013
 
DND Newsletter

Dear Dungeons & Dragons® Playtester,

Download today’s new D&D® Next playtest packet, just in time for the upcoming D&D Encounters™ season, Murder in Baldur’s Gate™, which kicks off with a Launch Event Weekend on August 17th and 18th. This playtest package includes substantial changes to the following classes: barbarian, cleric, druid, fighter, monk, paladin, ranger, rogue, and wizard (now called the mage). In addition, you’ll find a new form-fillable character sheet and updates to spells, feats, and much more. For a full list of changes, please consult the Read First document in the playtest package.

Get More Involved!


If you have questions about D&D Next or want to get more involved in the playtest process, here are a few suggestions for getting more involved.
Murder In Baldur’s Gate: Now available for download as part of the D&D Next playtest packet is the Monster Supplement and Events Supplement for the Murder in Baldur’s Gate adventure, available in stores soon! This adventure, which starts a year-long event called the Sundering, can be played at home using D&D Next or in store through the D&D Encounters official play program.
D&D Next Podcast featuring Acquisitions Incorporated: Wizards of the Coast and Penny Arcade proudly present the latest installment of the Acquisitions Incorporated saga, featuring D&D Next! This rollicking series of podcasts chronicles the party’s latest adventure, leading up to the Live D&D Game at PAX 2013. Join Mike Krahulik, Jerry Holkins, Scott Kurtz, and new intern Patrick Rothfuss as they wreak havoc in the Forgotten Realms®. Bring on the laughter and the tears! (Note: This series of podcasts features adults using adult language.) Listen to the first podcast here or download it on iTunes.
D&D Next Livestreams: Interested in seeing how members of D&D Next team playtest the game? Catch the latest D&D Next livestream games most Fridays on the D&D Twitch TV channel, or view them later on the Dungeons & Dragons YouTube channel.
As always, thanks for your involvement in the D&D Next playtest!
- The D&D Team
Jun 122013
 
tinysuperheroes

Empowering kids one cape at a time! Indiegogo campaign ENDING 

Seattle, WA — (SBWIRE) — 06/13/2013 – TinySuperheroes, a small organization led by Robyn Rosenberger, seeks to empower children with special needs. “We donate capes to Extraordinary TinySuperheroes who exemplify strength and determination as they overcome great adversity,” Robyn says.  ”Our Indiegogo campaign is ending and we need your help”.  Donate today at http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/tinysuperheroes-empowering-extraordinary-kids-one-cape-at-a-time.

These Extraordinary TinySuperheroes are then featured on the TinySuperheroes blog  “in hopes of giving them a voice, their illness or disability a face, and the world the opportunity to stretch.”

In the summer of 2012, Robyn created something she never knew would be life-altering to children and families all over the world. She feels like TinySuperheroes just started out all by itself. “I dusted off my sewing machine and made a superhero cape for my nephew’s second birthday,” Robyn recalls. She then made another one for her son. At that time, she was following the blog of a girl named Brenna, who was born with a very rare and severe skin disease. Robyn soon realized that Brenna needed a cape too and that there are other kids out there who were indeed TinySuperheroes.

Robyn gave Brenna a cape in January 2013 and featured the child’s story on her blog to help raise awareness about Brenna and her condition. Immediately, her blog was flooded with other extraordinary kids with their own remarkable stories. She started giving out capes to a dozen of these children. Within four months, Robyn was able to empower over 500 new TinySuperheroes in 35 states and 5 countries.

In her TinySuperheroes website, Robyn says, “See, we give these TinySuperheroes capes, but they give us (all of us) SO much more than that. Everyday I am more and more convinced that it’s no joke—these kids really are TinySuperheroes.” Robyn also says that the capes are more than just fabric. These capes help change the lives of children who are fighting illness and disability.

Then, by sharing the stories of these children and their extraordinary families, these TinySuperheroes can help raise awareness. “Raising awareness brings funding, funding leads to more research, and research brings cures for these incredible kids,” Robyn believes.

In the next 12 months, Robyn hopes to empower 1,500 TinySuperheroes from all over the world by bringing them capes and a message of hope and strength. Robyn and the TinySuperheroes need funding in order to complete this mission. Her Indiegogo campaign aims to raise funds to help them buy fabric, sew, personalize, and ship each cape. The proceeds will also help them write and share the stories of these kids to the world.

Contact:
TinySuperheroes
3213 W. Wheeler St. #83
Seattle, WA 98199
Email: we-empower@tinysuperheroes.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/tinysuperheroes
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/tinysuperheroes

Jan 112013
 
mw productions

CarpeGM.net collects quite a few news feeds from an, ever-growing, and diverse group of our favorite producers and and publishers in the gaming industry and geek pop culture.

We do this so that you can get gaming news from multiple sources at one site, while hopefully, expanding the horizons of our readers, as well as our own,  and getting the word out on new products.

Each week we highlight one of these feeds in our Weekly FEEDture.

This week…

Margaret Weis Productions

Margaret Weis Productions

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Nov 282012
 
ArkhamCityEscape_3D_Box_Small

Cryptozoic Entertainment Partners with
Warner Bros. Consumer Products and
DC Entertainment for
Batman: Arkham City Escape
Board Game
Two-Player Game Pits Batman against
the Entire Rogues Gallery

In Stores Early 2013

Batman: Arkham City Escape Board Game

Irvine, CA — Warner Bros. Consumer Products, DC Entertainment, and Cryptozoic Entertainment™, the premier developer of original and licensed games including The Walking Dead Board Game, today announced an all-new board game, Batman™: Arkham City Escape. Based on the amazing storyline of the award-winning videogame series developed by Rocksteady Studios and published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, this two-player game will pit Batman against all of his greatest foes, from The Joker and Harley Quinn to Poison Ivy and The Riddler, as they try to escape Arkham City. In stores in early 2013, Batman: Arkham City Escape will feature one player as Batman and another controlling twenty of the Dark Knight’s most vile enemies in a battle of strategy and combat, as Batman attempts to stop the villains from escaping captivity.

Cryptozoic’s Batman: Arkham City Escape board game will feature an Arkham City game board, over which one player moves villains while Batman tries to prevent their escape. When Batman and a villain occupy the same space on the board, epic battles ensue, as Batman utilizes his Utility Belt and Combat cards and risks retaliation from each villain.

“The fact that Batman is a great property with a huge amount of material to work with is both awesome and daunting for this game. We really wanted to offer fans a way to experience combat between Batman and his enemies, and this game is all that and more,” said Cory Jones, president and chief creative officer for Cryptozoic. “With Arkham City Escape, Batman alone fights all these villains to keep the streets of Gotham City safe.”

In Batman: Arkham City Escape, players will rely on strategy and cunning to win, and each game will offer new twists and turns depending on each player’s decisions. The game will be complete right out of the box, offering an 18” by 33” Arkham City game board, an 11” by 18” Utility Belt board, eight custom dice with both Bat-symbols and The Joker smiles, a 40-card villain deck, a 40-card combat deck for Batman, and much more.

Batman: Arkham City Escape will be available in early 2013 at the suggested retail price of $45.00. Please visitwww.cryptozoic.com for more information, and keep up to date with exclusive contests, promotions and game information on Cryptozoic Entertainment’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

 Batman: Arkham City Escape Board Game

Batman: Arkham City Escape Board Game

Batman: Arkham City Escape Board Game

- Two-player game pitting Batman against his greatest foes:

- All-new game demands strategy and cunning from both players

- Complete out-of-the-box, and featuring specially designed Arkham City game board, custom dice, and more than 80 game cards

 

About Cryptozoic Entertainment
Founded in 2010, Cryptozoic Entertainment, Inc. is a premier developer and publisher of original and licensed board games, card games, comics and trading cards, including the World of Warcraft® Trading Card Game, The Lookouts comic book, The Big Bang Theory Party Game and The Walking Dead™ Board Game. Following a philosophy and core principle of “Fans First,” the dedicated gamers and fans of the Cryptozoic Entertainment team are focused on producing fun and amazing products along with epic events that bring all gaming fans together as part of the Cryptozoic community. Visitwww.cryptozoic.com for additional product and event information.

About Warner Bros. Consumer Products
Warner Bros. Consumer Products, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, is one of the leading licensing and retail merchandising organizations in the world.

About DC Entertainment
DC Entertainment, home to iconic brands DC Comics (Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, The Flash), Vertigo (Sandman, Fables) and MAD, is the creative division charged with strategically integrating its content across Warner Bros. Entertainment and Time Warner.  DC Entertainment works in concert with many key Warner Bros. divisions to unleash its stories and characters across all media, including but not limited to film, television, consumer products, home entertainment and interactive games. Publishing thousands of comic books, graphic novels and magazines each year, DC Entertainment is the largest English-language publisher of comics in the world.  In January 2012, DC Entertainment, in collaboration with Warner Bros. and Time Warner divisions, launched We Can Be Heroes—a giving campaign featuring the iconic Justice League super heroes—to raise awareness and funds to fight the hunger crisis in the Horn of Africa.

About Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, a division of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group, is a premier worldwide publisher, developer, licensor and distributor of entertainment content for the interactive space across all current and future platforms, including console, handheld and PC-based gaming for both internal and third party game titles.

©2012 Cryptozoic Entertainment. 16279 Laguna Canyon Road, Irvine, CA 92618. All Rights Reserved.

BATMAN and all related characters and elements are trademarks of and © DC Comics.
(s12)

All other trademarks referenced herein are the properties of their respective owners.

# # #

Media Contact for Cryptozoic
AnnaMaria White
619.500.3616
AnnaMaria@WhiteStar-Communications.com
@White_AM

Nov 252012
 
CBscenariobook550

If you like the “Old Ones”,you need to check this out!
I’m soooooooooooooooo geeked!

This new collection of horror scenarios for the Call of Cthulhu role playing game features five tales of horror and the weird, set within the green and pleasant land of England. Each scenario focuses upon a different time period, from the streets of Victorian London to the far future when End is almost nigh.

Bad Company concerns a missing son of a peer of the realm. The investigators must watch their step as they descend into a Victorian world of greed, insane desire and death.

•Darkness, Descending takes place the 1930s amongst the splendid greenery of the English countryside. Archaeologists come to unearth relics from Britain’s dawn find themselves at the centre of strange goings on. A simple case of theft? Or the foreshadowing of something far darker to come?

•Wrong Turn is a contemporary tale set in a long abandoned radio telescope installation. A television production crew must spend the night amidst the cobwebs and dust. The investigators would be advised to tread carefully lest they wake the ghosts of the past, present and future.

•King takes place in the near future at a private hospital. The investigators awake from surgery to realise that in the kingdom of the blind the one eyed man is king.

•Set during the end of days in an insane future is My Little Sister Will Make You Suffer! In a galaxy gone mad, where cruelty and entertainment go hand in hand, the investigators must run the gauntlet if they are not to meet their end.

Although each scenario can be played as part of an existing campaign, they also come with a set of pre-generated player characters, allowing all to be played and run with the minimum of effort.

 

Cthulhu Britannica: Folklore Art Preview

Nov 22 2012

With the high standards set by Shadows over Scotland the Cubicle 7 art team have been pulling out all the stops on Folklore.  Here is just a small sample of the art to be found within Cthulhu Britannica: Folklore:

  

  

Illustrators working on this book are:   Andy HepworthJon HodgsonPat LoboykoEric LofgrenRich LongmoreJeremy McHughSam Manley Scott Neil and Scott Purdy.

Links:

Cthulhu Britannica Folklore Announced
Cthulhu Britannica
Shadows over Scotland

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Oct 312012
 
2012-Marvel-Premier-Wolverine-Emotion-Torment-Card

Marvel Trading Cards Go High-End as Upper Deck Launches Marvel Premier On Halloween!          

Trading card giant brings never before seen multi-panel sketch cards to market in this super-premium release!

Carlsbad, CA (October 30, 2012) – Upper Deck is raising the bar in terms of what collectors can expect from a pack of Marvel trading cards. Upper Deck invites you to experience the most premium comic trading card release of all-time with Marvel Premier. These exclusive packs are only for the most serious comic fans as each pack has a suggested retail price of $200.

Each pack of Marvel Premier contains five total cards, each one of them packing a punch! First fans will receive two premium base cards on a super-thick card stock from the 50-card base set numbered to only 99 copies. Next, they will receive a one-of-one sketch card from a top Marvel artist. The fourth card is an industry first where collectors will find either a dual, triple or quadruple multi-panel hinged sketch card. To get a first look at these miniature works of art, click HERE.

 

 

The fifth card will be either a “Classic Corners” card, a Shadowbox card or an “Emotion” booklet card by Jason Adams and NAR! The “Classic Corners” cards pay homage to many of the famous Marvel Comics cover corners with a manufactured patch card. The Shadowbox cards use a patent pending layered technology on a super-thick card to create a three dimensional appearance of famous Marvel battles. And, the “Emotion” booklet cards have never been seen before in the entertainment industry.

 

 

The cover will feature original art from Jason Adams, and once opened, the collector will find an emotion written on one side, and a corresponding Marvel character drawn by NAR! on the other. For example the “Anger” card features The Incredible Hulk.

 

 If you would like the complete list of cards in the series, download the 2012-Marvel-Premier-Final-Checklist

“For years we’ve seen die-hard Marvel fans eagerly pursuing premium inserts from our Marvel trading card lines,” said Jason Brenner, Upper Deck’s Marvel brand manager. “This is our first opportunity to provide them with a set of Marvel cards that are all high-end insert quality. This is certainly not a product for everyone which is why we are not making very much of it, but the fans it is targeted for are going to love it!”

Upper Deck’s 2012 Marvel Premier really is about the artists and the company has employed some of the best in the industry including Cruddie Torrain, Mike Mayhew, Lak Lim, Jose Jaro, Adriana Melo, Babisu Kourtis and NAR! With never before seen artwork from these great artists, passionate Marvel fans are in store for a real treat when they see the new imagery of their favorite Marvel characters.

Marvel fans can find 2012 Marvel Premier in hobby shops and through the company’s network of Authorized Internet Retailers when it debuts on Halloween!

 

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Oct 172012
 
DC_Comics_New_52_Mike_and_Matt_Glebe_sketch_card

Now available in hobby and comic stores, the DC Comics The New 52 Trading Cards Feature Original Art Created Exclusively for the Set !

 

Warner Bros. Consumer Products and
DC Entertainment Partner with
Cryptozoic Entertainment to Launch
DC Comics The New 52 Trading Cards
Featuring Original Art Created
Exclusively for the Trading Card Set
Now Available in Hobby and
Comic Stores Nationwide

DC Comics New 52 Mike and Matt Glebe sketch cardIrvine, CA (October 18, 2012)Cryptozoic Entertainment™, the premier developer of original and licensed games and trading cards, including The Walking Dead™ Trading Cards and The Big Bang Theory Trading Cards, in partnership with Warner Bros. Consumer Products and DC Entertainment, today announced the launch of their newest trading card collection, DC Comics The New 52. Honoring the DC Comics universe relaunch that began in 2011, the DC Comics The New 52 Trading Card set features a 61-card, exclusive-art base set, two chase sets and sketch cards of some of DC Comics’ most popular characters.DC Comics The New 52 Trading Cards are now available in hobby and comic stores nationwide.
The first DC Comics trading card set in three years, Cryptozoic’s DC Comics The New 52 features new adaptations of fan-favorite characters, including Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, and many more, sketched by some of the industry’s leading artists. In addition, all base cards include original art, commissioned exclusively for the DC Comics The New 52 Trading Card set. Also featured in the set are bonus chase cards, including “The Lanterns” chase set, featuring iconic Lanterns, and the “Work in Progress” chase set, featuring lenticular sketch to full-color work.

“As this is the first DC Comics trading card set in years, we wanted to include something for trading card collectors and DC Comics fans alike. Exclusive base card art, sketch cards from some of the best artists in the business and a lenticular chase set—there’s something for everyone in every pack,” said Cryptozoic’s trading card brand manager, Miranda Anderson. “We’ve had a great time working with DC Comics on this card set, and we are really excited to launch today and get the cards to fans.”

The DC Comics The New 52 Trading Cards are now available at hobby and comic stores, for $3.50 per five-card pack and $84 per 24-pack display. Fans are encouraged to check with their local hobby stores for the exclusive DC Comics The New 52 Trading Cards Binders, retailing at $30.

Please visit www.cryptozoic.com/tradingcards for more information, and keep up-to-date with exclusive contests, promotions and game information on Cryptozoic Entertainment’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

# # #
 Note to editors
@CryptozoicAbout Cryptozoic Entertainment
Founded in 2010, Cryptozoic Entertainment, Inc. is a premier developer and publisher of original and licensed board games, card games, comics and trading cards, including the World of Warcraft® Trading Card Game, The Lookouts comic book, The Big Bang Theory: The Party Game and The Walking Dead™ Board Game. Following a philosophy and core principle of “Fans First,” the dedicated gamers and fans of the Cryptozoic Entertainment team are focused on producing fun and amazing products along with epic events that bring all gaming fans together as part of the Cryptozoic community. Visit www.cryptozoic.com for additional product and event information.

About Warner Bros. Consumer Products
Warner Bros. Consumer Products, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, is one of the leading licensing and retail merchandising organizations in the world.

About DC Entertainment
DC Entertainment, home to iconic brands DC Comics (Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, The Flash), Vertigo (Sandman, Fables) and MAD, is the creative division charged with strategically integrating its content across Warner Bros. Entertainment and Time Warner.  DC Entertainment works in concert with many key Warner Bros. divisions to unleash its stories and characters across all media, including but not limited to film, television, consumer products, home entertainment and interactive games. Publishing thousands of comic books, graphic novels and magazines each year, DC Entertainment is the largest English-language publisher of comics in the world.  In January 2012, DC Entertainment, in collaboration with Warner Bros. and Time Warner divisions, launched We Can Be Heroes—a giving campaign featuring the iconic Justice League super heroes—to raise awareness and funds to fight the hunger crisis in the Horn of Africa.

©2012 Cryptozoic Entertainment. 16279 Laguna Canyon Road, Irvine, CA 92618. All Rights Reserved.

BATMAN, SUPERMAN, WONDER WOMAN, GREEN LANTERN and all related characters and elements are trademarks of and © DC Comics. (s12)

All other trademarks referenced herein are the properties of their respective owners.

Media Contact for Cryptozoic
AnnaMaria White
619-500-3616
AnnaMaria@WhiteStar-Communications.com

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Oct 162012
 
Cap and skull

 

If you’re a comic fan, you must check this out!!

By: for Cracked.com

 

 

 

 

Ah, who can forget that world-changing childhood moment when you first picked up a comic book featuring a truly unique superhero character? Not comic book creators, apparently — because it turns out they straight-up jacked many of the heroes you know and love from earlier works. And no, we’re not about to list the knockoff brainchildren of Rob Liefeld. We’re talking A-listers, like …

#5. Captain America

Captain America arose during World War II as an inspiration for John Q. Public to do way more Nazi face-punching, and there’s no hero more American than the red, white and blue Captain.


“This looks as ridiculous as it does awesome!”

Cap is so well known, in fact, that no one else can successfully pull off the stars-and-bars look anymore — if they try, they may as well just print “RIPOFF” across their chest in place of the big white star. And God help them if they had some kind of trademark red, white and “everything-proof” blue shield.

Except …

It turns out ol’ Cap actually showed up a little late to the Stars ‘n’ Stripes toga party. In fact, he was beat by two other dudes decked out in Old Glory — the first of whom was the Shield, whose January 1940 debut landed a good 14 months before el Capitan. The Shield wore an armored costume shaped like a — wait for it – shield that repelled bullets and also prevented him from clapping or holding babies.

comicvine.com
Thus making him the perfect 1940s father.

Curiously enough, in his first issue, Captain America had a shield shaped just like that (although he had the good sense to carry it instead of using it as a fashion statement). It was such a conspicuous copy that the Shield’s publishers complained, resulting in Marvel changing it in the very next issue to the more practical patriotic Frisbee Cap carries to this day.

goodcomics.com
Apparently Adolf’s only weakness is a telegraphed haymaker.

But the similarities didn’t end with the characters’ amazing fashion sense. Cap and Shieldy also both took a serum that gave them their powers, and in both cases Nazis killed the doctors who created the superjuice. And the name of the Shield’s formula was the clever acronym S.H.I.E.L.D. (Sacrum, Heart, Innervation, Eyes, Lungs and Derma), which you might recognize as the name of the organization Captain America would eventually come to work for under the command of Nick Fury (the pasty one with all the belt pouches, not the Sam Jackson one).

realamericandaily.blogspot.com
“The Shield is unstoppable! Unless you happen to angle your gun up or down, slightly.”

The Shield’s initial run came to an untimely end when the publisher, having recently changed its name from MLJ Magazines to Archie Comics due to the popularity of a certain other character, decided to switch their focus away from superheroes. And despite several attempts to revive the character over the years, Captain America has easily retained his ear-winged crown as the usurper king of the patriotic Hitler-punchers.

#4. Aquaman

Back when Aquaman debuted in 1941, he was just a normal human whose scientist father had used him as an aquatic guinea pig, granting him the power to survive better down where it’s wetter. The Aquaman we all know and love didn’t come about until they retconned him in 1959: That’s when he became a full-fledged Atlantean, gained the ability to telepathically talk to seafood and eventually became king of the seas.

Except …

The Shark had already done all that — 20 years earlier. The Shark debuted in Amazing-Man Comics in 1939 and is widely considered the first real aquatic superhero (although Marvel’s Sub-Mariner came in a close second in the ultra-competitive underwater superbeing race). The Shark watched lots of “super-television” and fought crime with an assist from his dear old dad — Neptune himself. The reason they called him the Shark might surprise you: It’s because he liked to hang out with sharks. OK, so maybe that didn’t surprise you.

digitalcomicmuseum.com
“Dude, be honest, how big does my package look in this Speedo?”

But the similarities end with their powers and origins, because Aquaman and the Shark look nothing alike. The Shark wears a blue bathing suit and a mask — although, as far as we know, he has no secret identity to protect. Maybe he’s just into masks.

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“Oh, yeah, us dead sailors are totally better off. Yaaay.”

Aquaman, on the other hand, sports a more distinctive look. In a world where the good heroes apparently snatched up all the red and blue spandex, Aquaman decided to take the road less traveled: He fights sea-crime in a long-sleeve, traffic-cone-orange top, above a pair of dark green pants. He’s also got a few gold accessories to really make his fabulously flaxen hair “pop.”


“Although spears are used to hunt whales, I use mine in a way that is not like that.”

However, if you flip a few pages past the Shark in Amazing-Man Comics, you’ll find a familiar face. Minimidget is a 2-inch-tall man, but if you overlook that one slight discrepancy, he and Aquaman have a lot in common.

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He tragically dies several issues later when he’s accidentally eaten by a sea sponge.

First, they’re both almost as useful as a sex swing in a fight, and second, they look like twins. Blond hair, orange long-sleeve top with green pants and a gold belt? Yeah, all DC added was some scales and the letter “A.” Pick up any issue of Amazing-Man Comics, and you’re holding the complete recipe to whip up your very own Aquaman.

#3. The Punisher

Back in the early ’70s, a black-clad assassin came gunning for Spidey in The Amazing Spider-Man No. 129. Marvel liked the character so much that they spun him off into his own series, turning this skull-wearing gunslinger for hire into a one-man army fighting his own personal war on crime. The Punisher was the first real antihero in comics, and everyone has tried to copy him since.

Except …

The Punisher was actually greatly influenced by (read: shamelessly carbon-copied from) author Don Pendleton’s Executioner, who first appeared in the 1968 novel War Against the Mafia. Like the Punisher (aka Frank Castle), the Executioner (aka Mack Bolan) is a Vietnam vet who keeps a “War Journal,” drives a high-tech “War Wagon” and tends to shoot lots of bad people to death.

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War death.

But while characters in novels generally aren’t known for their outlandish attire, the Punisher is easily recognized by his trademark black suit with the leering white skull that makes him seem more villain than hero. It’s a very memorable look — as well it should be, because it’s been around since the 1940s. You see, the costume borrows heavily from a popular hero of the golden age of comics called the Black Terror. This series featured Bob Benton, a druggist who created a formula that gave him super strength and invulnerability. For reasons never explained in the original comic, this also gave him an overwhelming compulsion to dress up in pirate tights and fight crime.

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With a name like the Black Terror, we expected way more old-timey racism.

Despite his relatively run-of-the-mill powers, the Black Terror was pretty popular for a while — perhaps due to the fact that he had the bitchingest duds around. In an era when all the other heroes wore garish colors, the Black Terror was a dark, menacing figure, rocking the skull and crossbones and a mismatched cape that he presumably lifted from some wimpier superhero to set an example that nobody fucks with the Black Terror.

However, unlike the Punisher, the Black Terror wasn’t really an antihero. He was just your average do-gooder, trying to make a difference in the world by savagely murdering bad guys with his bare fists while wearing the universal symbol of death. Also unlike Frank Castle, the Black Terror had superpowers and didn’t typically use guns — but he certainly wasn’t opposed to employing them when he had to. In fact, during some of his more trigger-happy moments, he could put even the ruthless Punisher to shame. After all, when’s the last time you saw the Punisher do something like literally steamroll a group of offensive Asian stereotypes while simultaneously Swiss-cheesing them with a Tommy gun?

#2. Cyclops

What do you do when you wake up one morning to find that your eyeballs are puking out destructive beams you can’t control? You get a special pair of goggles to keep them from zapping everyone, then join up with the X-Men and become the mutant superhero known as Cyclops, of course!

Except …

Or, if it’s nearly a quarter century before the X-Men even existed, you could always call yourself the Comet instead.

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“No, baby, you gotta hide lower … lower … looooooower …”

Cartoonist Jack Cole is perhaps best known for creating Plastic Man in 1941 (the first stretchy superhero, way before Mr. Fantastic of the Fantastic Four). But before that, his most popular character was the Comet. The Comet’s alter ego, John Dickering, was a young scientist who discovered a gas “50 times lighter than hydrogen.” So naturally he decided that the most reasonable thing to do was to shoot it up.

Instead of inducing a coronary embolism, the first test gave him the power to super-leap. Emboldened by his own reckless success, John dickered around with more injections until he gained all-out flight. However, there was an unfortunate side effect that surprisingly had nothing to do with him floating off into space to pop like a runaway balloon: His eyes began emitting rays that disintegrated things — rays that fortunately could also be stopped by ordinary glass. And so, freshly armed with his new “dissolvo-vision,” he created a costume complete with protective goggles, embellished it with stars, moons and a giant red arrow pointing from his crotch to his face (for some reason), then set out to fight him some crime!

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“If either one of you makes a Wicked Witch reference while I’m killing you, I swear to God …”

Cyclops has an undeniably similar affliction and costume, the only difference being that his beams are concussive-force optic blasts that don’t give off any heat — meaning that he sort of eyepunches you really hard, without killing you — whereas the Comet …

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His one-liners could use some work, but his random murder skills are above reproach.

… apparently had no such pussification ray in his origin story. During his first appearance in Pep Comics No. 1, the Comet atomized no fewer than three different gangsters, and when he finally tracked down the crime boss, he decided to give his eyes a rest and dropped him to his death instead. All in a day’s work for the Comet!

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“Homeopathy forever!”

Incidentally, Pep Comics No. 1 was also the first appearance of the Shield. What a strange coincidence! Another odd happenstance is that legendary artist Jack Kirby was the co-creator of both Captain America and the X-Men (and, for that matter, the Fantastic Four, featuring the quite Plastic Man-esque Mr. Fantastic). But Kirby probably didn’t even know about these obscure characters — except that he did do freelance work for Archie Comics in ’58, a good five years before he and Stan Lee created the X-Men.

Huh. If we didn’t know any better, we’d be tempted to say that Jack Kirby, arguably the most influential comic book artist ever, may have also been the biggest “borrower” in the industry. There’s also some controversy centered around whether or not he deserves to get credit for co-creating Spider-Man with Steve Ditko and Stan Lee, which gets really interesting when you consider the fact that Kirby worked at Fox Comics early in his career — the company responsible for a character that was awfully similar to …

#1. Spider-Man

Sure, there have always been lots of arachnid-themed characters in comics, but none of them are as distinct as Spidey. And while it seems like just about everyone nowadays can climb walls and leap around like an Olympic-level Slinky, nobody else has web-slingers — because that’s pretty much Spider-Man’s “thing.” Sure, the spider sense is cool and all, but if there’s one aspect that defines the character, it’s his web-slinging. Web shooters, mounted on his wrists, that he uses to swing around and catch baddies …

Except …

… just like Fox Comics’ Spider Queen did in the 1940s, a good 20 years before Peter “Patent Violation” Parker ever experimented with shooting the sticky stuff.

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Spider Queen, Spider Queen, she can cook, she can clean … and do … laundry, we guess. Look out!

Like Spidey, the Spider Queen had a tragic backstory and thought red and blue were appropriate stealth colors. Shannon Kane was the wife and lab assistant of government chemist Harry Kane. After Harry was killed by enemies of the country, she nosed through his papers and found the formula for “spider-web fluid.” So then she devised a pair of bracelets to spray the stuff, donned a slutty cheerleader outfit and started busting some heads. And look, she even fired her web bracelets with a flex of the wrist:

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“That will teach you to mess with me, law enforcement!”

Yeah, Shannon Kane was doing the whole web-slinger shtick long before nuclear arachnids started running amok and biting moody high school students. And when you think about it, web shooters actually fit a female character from the ’40s remarkably well. After all, in an era when the strongest female superhero of all could be put in her place by a little S&M, she couldn’t very well go around punching people — she was a dame, for goodness’ sake! She needed to fight crime without offending the sensibilities of the time, and firing sticky ropes at the bad guys basically gave the Spider Queen the power of super-knitting.

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“No, please, not another one of those hideous sweaters! NOOOOOOOO!”

As for the incredibly revealing outfit she wore in an age of conservative dress, we’re thinking the Spider Queen used it as a way to stun her enemies. No, she didn’t have the proportional speed and strength of a spider, but in the era before bikinis, braless cleavage must’ve been a formidable superpower.

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“I think she’s coming on to me.”


Monte Richard writes comics with a bunch of other supervillains at RealToyGun.com.

Read more: 5 Iconic Characters You Didn’t Know Were Ripoffs | Cracked.com http://www.cracked.com/article_20026_5-iconic-characters-you-didnt-know-were-ripoffs_p2.html#ixzz27WHYgtlD

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