Lego In All It’s Gaming Awesomeness

Yes LEGO has all kinds of fancy packs for just about any ages. The real magic of LEGO is found in a different alley of the proverbial Legoland though. Since the birth of the famous LEGO building blocks people have experimented and built amazing things based on movies, comics, real life and … video games. I’m here to showcase some of these, and I sincerely hope Lego will some day release these as actual boxes to buy. Enjoy this selection of awesome video game LEGO builds.

First up, a LEGO representation of Rapture, the city in BioShock 1 and 2:

LEGO Bioshock Big Daddy

Next up, we have a life-sized Halo Master Chief costume:

Next, a StarCraft 2 Banshee:

Lego Technic Starcraft 2 Civilian Banshee

And last but not least, a Motorized Siege Tank from Starcraft 2!

If you’re interested in seeing a lot more LEGO builds, that aren’t necessarily related to gaming, head over to The Brothers Brick. That’s all I have for now, I hope you enjoyed it a little bit and don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

/Gamecultist

New Video Game Releases Week 26 (27 June – 3 July)

Hey there guys. Below you’ll find the new video game releases from 6 June to 12 June. Please note that this list is always subject to change and as such is not an absolute reference. Also sorry for the lack of articles over the week, I was preparing for my thesis.

Title Platform Genre Release Date
ATV X-Treme World Challenge DS Driving Jul 1, 2011
Next Island PC Adventure Jun 30, 2011
Galaga Special Edition MOBILE Action Jun 30, 2011
Carcassonne AND Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Puzzle Agent 2 PC Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Rock of Ages X360 Action Jun 30, 2011
Driver: Renegade 3DS Driving Jun 30, 2011
Demise: Ascension PC Role-Playing Jun 30, 2011
Hollywood 61 3DS Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath PS3 Action Jun 30, 2011
Capsized X360 Action Jun 30, 2011
Arcana Heart 3 X360 Action Jun 30, 2011
Rock of Ages PS3 Action Jun 30, 2011
May’s Mystery: Forbidden Memories DS Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Zombii Attack WII Action Jun 30, 2011
Wrecked – Revenge Revisited PS3 Driving Jun 30, 2011
Zoo Mania 3DS Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Storm WII Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Wrecked – Revenge Revisited X360 Driving Jun 30, 2011
Red Bull X-Fighters X360 Sports Jun 30, 2011
Section 8: Prejudice PS3 Action Jun 30, 2011
Plants vs. Zombies AND Strategy Jun 30, 2011
Storm X360 Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Sports Island 3D 3DS Sports Jun 30, 2011
Kevin Van Dam’s Big Bass Challenge PS3 Sports Jun 30, 2011
Thor: God of Thunder 3DS Action Jun 30, 2011
Storm PS3 Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
A New Beginning PC Adventure Jun 30, 2011
Storm DS Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Puzzle Agent 2 MAC Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Serious Sam: Double D X360 Action Jun 30, 2011
Gatling Gears PS3 Action Jun 30, 2011
Puzzle Overload DS Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Bodycount PC Action Jun 30, 2011
Sketch Tanks MAC Action Jun 30, 2011
Torchlight II PC Role-Playing Jun 30, 2011
Sketch Tanks PC Action Jun 30, 2011
Carcassonne BB Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
DragonSoul PC Role-Playing Jun 30, 2011
Squeeballs Party X360 Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Storm PSP Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Red Bull X-Fighters PC Sports Jun 30, 2011
Coma PC Adventure Jun 30, 2011
Storm PC Puzzle Jun 30, 2011
Dungeons & Dragons: Daggerdale PS3 Role-Playing Jun 30, 2011
Rock of Ages PC Action Jun 30, 2011
Hacker Evolution Duality PC Strategy Jun 30, 2011
Proun PC Driving Jun 30, 2011
Backbreaker: Vengeance X360 Sports Jun 29, 2011
Chess Attack DS Puzzle Jun 29, 2011
Half-Minute Hero: Super Mega Neo Climax X360 Role-Playing Jun 29, 2011
Pinball FX 2: Marvel Pinball – Captain America X360 Puzzle Jun 29, 2011
Jewels of the Ages DS Puzzle Jun 28, 2011
Einstein’s Brain Power DS Puzzle Jun 28, 2011
Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D
3DS Action Jun 28, 2011
Call of Duty: Black Ops – Annihilation X360 Action Jun 28, 2011
Dynasty Warriors: Gundam 3 PS3 Action Jun 28, 2011
Sniper: Ghost Warrior PS3 Action Jun 28, 2011
UFC Personal Trainer: The Ultimate Fitness System X360 Sports Jun 28, 2011
Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition PS3 Action Jun 28, 2011
Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition X360 Action Jun 28, 2011
Storm: Frontline Nation PC Strategy Jun 28, 2011
Call of Duty: Black Ops – Annihilation PS3 Action Jun 28, 2011
UFC Personal Trainer: The Ultimate Fitness System PS3 Sports Jun 28, 2011
Crysis 2: Decimation Pack PS3 Action Jun 28, 2011
Gunslingers WII Action Jun 28, 2011
Call of Duty: Black Ops – Annihilation PC Action Jun 28, 2011
Marvel Pinball: Captain America PS3 Puzzle Jun 28, 2011
Hearts of Iron III: For the Motherland PC Strategy Jun 28, 2011
Dynasty Warriors: Gundam 3 X360 Action Jun 28, 2011
Wicked Monster Blast! WII Action Jun 28, 2011
Mystery Case Files: The Malgrave Incident WII Puzzle Jun 27, 2011

Which games are you getting this week?

/Gamecultist

Braintraining Improves Grades In Mere Weeks

Contrary to popular belief, video games do have a lot of merits. I summed up several of these in one of my first articles I ever wrote (click here) but let’s take a look at one such advantages. I assume everyone is familiar with Brain Training. For those of you who have not heard of it, here’s what wikipedia has to say: Continue reading “Braintraining Improves Grades In Mere Weeks”

Ever Wanted To Record Your Gameplay? Here’s How

Did you ever want to know how you can record your gameplay on a gaming console with your voice recorded on it? Swidtter from Swidtter’s Cave will tell you how! Watch the 2 video’s below if you’re interested. I’ll post a list of the things you need below so you have an idea of what you’ll have to buy hardwarewise. Enjoy

What you need:

  • TV
  • Computer
  • Gaming Console
  • HD PVR
  • Component Cable matching the console
  • Video component cable
  • 2x jack 3.5 male-male cables
  • Phono to jack 3.5 female
  • Jack 3.5 female-female
  • Jack 3.5 stereo split, male – 2x female
  • USB cable, max 6 feet

Now, on to the video’s. Swidtter divided them into 2 parts namely hardware and software. Part one will be hardware while part two deals with the software requirements for this setup.

There’s probably a couple of other setups that aren’t as complicated. But rest assured this will give you the highest quality, both in image and sound. Visit Swidtter’s Cave for more video’s.

/Gamecultist

So Why No Megan Fox In Transformers 3?

Yes, there’s another Transformers movie. Let’ s get one thing clear, I really dislike the Transformers movies. There’s no decent story, cheesy one-liners and mediocre acting across the board. The only thing going for this movie are the pretty fancy special effects. So yeah, there’s my review of the upcoming movie. Let’s hope I’m wrong …

People who have been paying attention to the movie and watched the trailer have already noticed a distinct lack of Megan Fox’s pretty face. The reason for that you wonder? Well, it seems like Steven Spielberg had her fired after she compared director Michael Bay with Hitler.

She herself said that she had other projects waiting for her attention and that she left the Transformers: Dark of the Moon set to attend to those projects. However, Michael Bay revealed the true reason for her departure. Fox had compared Michael Bay with Hitler in a magazine. The jewish producer Steven Spielberg is understandbly agitated by this and had her fired. Bay wasn’t hurt by Fox’s comparison by Steven Spielberg is very sensitive on the subject. After he directed Schindler’s List (go see that movie, it’s awesome) he created the ‘Survivors of the Shoah Visual Hisyory’ foundation, that strives to keep the memory of the holocaust during the second World War intact.

Megan Fox owes a great deal of her fame to the first 2 Transformer movies (and Jeniffer’s Body). She has since been replaced by model Rosie Huntingdon-Withley. Fox’s carreer might be just about over, while Huntingdon-Withley’s might be getting a kickstart.

Transformers: Dark of the Moon will be released on 29 June 2011. Watch the trailer below.

/Gamecultist

New Video Game Releases Week 25 (20 June – 26 June)

Hey there guys. Below you’ll find the new video game releases from 6 June to 12 June. Please note that this list is always subject to change and as such is not an absolute reference. 

Title Platform Genre Release Date
Back to the Future: The Game – Episode V: OUTATIME   PC Action Jun 23, 2011  
Pro Jumper Chimaki’s Hot Spring Tour Guilty Gear Tangent?!   DS Action Jun 23, 2011  
Back to the Future: The Game – Episode V: OUTATIME   MAC Action Jun 23, 2011  
Trenched   X360 Action Jun 22, 2011  
Cars 2: The Video Game
 
WII Driving Jun 21, 2011  
L.A. Noire: Nicholson Electroplating Disaster   X360 Adventure Jun 21, 2011  
Reel Fishing Paradise 3D   3DS Sports Jun 21, 2011  
L.A. Noire: Nicholson Electroplating Disaster   PS3 Adventure Jun 21, 2011  
Cars 2: The Video Game   DS Driving Jun 21, 2011  
Maximum Racing: Super Karts   WII Driving Jun 21, 2011  
Cars 2: The Video Game   MAC Driving Jun 21, 2011  
Gummy Bears Magical Medallion   WII Action Jun 21, 2011  
DualPenSports   3DS Sports Jun 21, 2011  
Dungeon Siege III   PC Role-Playing Jun 21, 2011  
EVE Online: Incarna   PC Role-Playing Jun 21, 2011  
Cars 2: The Video Game
 
PS3 Driving Jun 21, 2011  
Dungeon Siege III
 
PS3 Role-Playing Jun 21, 2011  
Cars 2: The Video Game   PSP Driving Jun 21, 2011  
F.3.A.R.   PC Action Jun 21, 2011  
Dungeon Siege III
 
X360 Role-Playing Jun 21, 2011  
Shadows of the Damned
 
X360 Action Jun 21, 2011  
Shadows of the Damned
 
PS3 Action Jun 21, 2011  
F.3.A.R.
 
X360 Action Jun 21, 2011  
ArmA II: Reinforcements   PC Action Jun 21, 2011  
Cars 2: The Video Game   PC Driving Jun 21, 2011  
Gods & Heroes: Rome Rising   PC Role-Playing Jun 21, 2011  
Cars 2: The Video Game   X360 Driving Jun 21, 2011  
F.3.A.R.
 
PS3 Action Jun 21, 2011  
Dual Pack: Syphon Filter Logan’s Shadow / Killzone Liberation   PSP Puzzle Jun 20, 2011  
Critical Mass   PC Puzzle Jun 20, 2011  
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D
3DS Action Jun 19, 2011

Which games are you getting this week?

/Gamecultist

The Gaming Industry – Infographic

Why hello there! Glad you could join us for another short article on this fine sunday afternoon. Today, I’ll be sharing another pretty cool infographic with you guys. This time, you’ll be able to take a look at the gaming industry, its demographic and some numbers on its size.

Trust me when I say there’s a lot of misconception about the age of gamers. The common argument is that all gamers are kids and teenagers. That is of course not entirely untrue, but it’s important to realise that there are a lot of adults who buy games as well. Turns out the average age of the gamer is 34. And that’s not at all surprising if you think back to the time when video games first appeared, which is when these people where kids or teenagers who got hooked on arcade games like Tron and Pac-Man. It’s great to see that gamers are getting older, because that means we’ll also get better feedback on games, which in turn helps developers make better games.

Anyway, enough rambling. Check out the infographic below and let me know what you think in the comment section below!

Video Game Industry Statistics Infographic

Also, don’t forget to check us out on Twitter and Facebook. Remember to check out Swidtter’s Cave as well for playthroughs of various games including InFAMOUS.

/Niels

DC Comics’ Overhaul Covers Released

As you may have read in this article, DC Comics rebooting its entire universe in the coming months. There’ll be 52 new # 1 issues. The people over at CSICON made a pretty neat summary of them all, so I shamelessly copied it. (All credit goes to them!). Not all covers are here, hence the empty spaces. Click the images for a larger view.

Description

Cover

JUSTICE LEAGUE #1
Written by Geoff Johns
Art and cover by Jim Lee and Scott Williams
RETROSOLICITED • On sale AUGUST 31 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US RATED T • Combo pack edition: $4.99 US
Comics superstars Geoff Johns and Jim Lee make history! In a universe where super heroes are strange and new, Batman has discovered a dark evil that requires him to unite the World Greatest Heroes!This spectacular debut issue is also offered as a special combo pack edition, polybagged with a redemption code for a digital download of the issue.
 
JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL #1
Written by Dan Jurgens
Art by Aaron Lopresti and Matt Ryan
Cover by Aaron Lopresti
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
With the growing presence of super beings around the world, the United Nations resolves to create a new group called Justice League International.Batman, Booster Gold, Green Lantern Guy Gardner, August General in Iron, Fire, Ice, Vixen and Rocket Red are charged with promoting unity and trust – but can they reach that goal without killing each other first?
 
AQUAMAN #1
Written by Geoff Johns
Art and cover by Ivan Reis and Joe Prado
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The superstar creators from Blackest Night and Brightest Day reunite to take Aquaman to amazing new depths! Aquaman has renounced the throne of Atlantis – but the sea will not release Arthur Curry so easily. Now, from a forgotten corner of the ocean emerges… The Trench! A broken race of creatures that should not exist, an unspeakable need driving them, The Trench will be the most talked-about new characters in the DC Universe!
 
WONDER WOMAN #1
Written by Brian Azzarello
Art and cover by Cliff Chiang
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED
The Gods walk among us. To them, our lives are playthings. Only one woman would dare to protect humanity from the wrath of such strange and powerful forces. But is she one of us – or one of them?
 
THE FLASH #1
Written by Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato
Art and cover by Francis Manapul
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The Fastest Man Alive returns to his own monthly series from the writer/artist team of Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato! The Flash knows he can’t be everywhere at once, but what happens when he faces an all-new villain who really can! As if that’s not bad enough, this villain is a close friend!
 
CAPTAIN ATOM #1
Written by J.T. Krul
Art by Freddie Williams II
Cover by Stanley “Artgerm” Lau
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Charged by nuclear energy, possessing vast molecular powers, Captain Atom has the potential to be a literal god among men – a hero without limits. But the question is: Will he lose himself in the process?Don’t miss the start of a legend from writer J.T. Krul (Green Arrow, Teen Titans) and artist Freddie Williams II (JSA All-Stars)!
 
THE FURY OF FIRESTORM #1
Written by Ethan Van Sciver and Gail Simone
Art by Yildiray Cinar
Cover by Ethan Van Sciver
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Jason Rusch and Ronnie Raymond. These two high school students are worlds apart – and now they’re drawn into a conspiracy of super-science that bonds them forever in a way they can’t explain or control. The dark secrets of the murderous Dog Team and its Firestorm Protocol force them to put aside their differences to confront a threat so terrifying that it may lead to a new Cold War! Welcome to a major new vision of nuclear terror from writers Ethan Van Sciver and Gail Simone with astonishing art by Yildiray Cinar!
 
GREEN ARROW #1
Written by J.T. Krul
Art by Dan Jurgens and Norm Rapmund
Cover by Brett Booth and Rob Hunter
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Green Arrow is on the hunt. Driven by inner demons, Ollie Queen travels the world and brings outlaws to justice…by breaking every law.Now, armed with cutting-edge weaponry and illegally gained intel (courtesy of his team at QCore), Green Arrow is shooting first and asking questions later.
 
THE SAVAGE HAWKMAN #1
Written by Tony S. Daniel
Art and cover by Philip Tan
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Carter Hall’s skill at deciphering lost languages has led him to a job with an archaeologist who specializes in alien ruins – but will the doctor’s latest discovery spread an alien plague through New York City? No matter the personal cost, Carter Hall must don his wings and become the new, savage Hawkman to survive! Witness the start of a new action series from writer Tony S. Daniel and artist Philip Tan that will take Hawkman where no hero has flown before!
 
MISTER TERRIFIC #1
Written by Eric Wallace
Art by Roger Robinson
Cover by J.G. Jones
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The world’s third-smartest man – and one of its most eligible bachelors – uses his brains and fists against science gone mad in this new series from Eric Wallace (Titans) and Roger Robinson!Michael Holt is the head of a successful high-tech corporation and an institute that recruits and encourages the finest minds of the next generation to excel. As Mister Terrific he inhabits a world of amazement few others know exists, let alone can comprehend.
 
DC UNIVERSE PRESENTS #1
Written by Paul Jenkins
Art by Bernard Chang
Cover by Ryan Sook
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
It’s the start of a new series spotlighting some of the DC Universes’s most exciting super heroes! First up is Deadman, straight from the pages of Brightest Day, in a five-issue epic where the body-hopping hero meets his match in a new foe who wants to make sure the souls that Deadman helps out go straight to Hell!
 
ACTION COMICS #1
Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Rags Morales and Rick Bryant
Cover by Rags Morales
Variant cover by Jim Lee and Scott Williams
On sale September 7 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T
The one and only Grant Morrison (All-Star Superman) returns to Superman, joined by sensational artist Rags Morales (Identity Crisis), to bring you tales of The Man of Steel unlike any you’ve ever read! This extra-sized debut issue is the cornerstone of the entire DC Universe!

 

SUPERMAN #1
Written by George Perez
Breakdowns and cover by George Perez
Art by Jesus Merino
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The new adventures of Superman begin here! What is The Man of Steel’s startling new status quo? How does it affect Lois Lane and The Daily Planet? There’s no time for answers now, because Superman must stop a monstrous threat to Metropolis – one that he somehow is the cause of!
 
SUPERBOY #1
Written by Scott Lobdell
Art by R.B. Silva and Rob Lean
Cover by Eric Canete
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
They thought he was just an experiment – and a failed one at that! Grown from a combination of Kryptonian and human DNA, the Clone was no more than a set of data to the scientists of Project N.O.W.H.E.R.E. But when the scope of his stunning powers was revealed, he became a deadly weapon! Now the question is: Can a clone develop a conscience?
 
SUPERGIRL #1
Written by Michael Green and Mike Johnson
Art and cover by Mahmud Asrar
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Meet Supergirl. She’s got the unpredictable behavior of a teenager, the same powers as Superman – and none of his affection for the people of Earth. So don’t piss her off!
 
BATMAN #1
Written by Scott Snyder
Art by Greg Capullo and Jonathan Glapion
Cover by Greg Capullo
Variant cover by Ethan Van Sciver
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Be here for the start of a new era for The Dark Knight from writer Scott Snyder (American Vampire, Batman: Gates of Gotham) and artist Greg Capullo (Spawn)! A series of brutal killings hints at an ancient conspiracy, and Batman learns that Gotham City is deadlier than he knew.
 
DETECTIVE COMICS #1
Written by Tony S. Daniel
Art by Tony S. Daniel and Ryan Winn
Cover by Tony S. Daniel
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
DC’s flagship title is relaunched for the first time ever, with new Batman adventures from acclaimed writer/artist Tony S. Daniel!A killer called The Gotham Ripper is on the loose on Batman’s home turf – leading The Dark Knight on a deadly game of cat and mouse.
 
BATWING #1
Written by Judd Winick
Art and cover by Ben Oliver
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Africa, a land of beauty – and of great horror. A land of creation and conflict. It is in desperate need of a defender, and from the ranks of Batman Incorporated comes a soldier to carry on the legacy of The Dark Knight in the most tumultuous region on Earth. Meet Batwing, the Batman of Africa!

 

BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT #1
Written by David Finch
Art by David Finch and Richard Friend
Cover by David Finch
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The Dark Knight struggles against a deadly – yet strangely familiar – foe in this phenomenal debut issue from superstar writer/artist David Finch (Brightest Day, Action Comics)!As a mysterious figure slinks through the halls of Arkham Asylum, Batman must fight his way through a gauntlet of psychos, and Bruce Wayne faces the unexpected legal ramifications of Batman Incorporated!

 

BATMAN AND ROBIN #1
Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Art and cover by Patrick Gleason and Mick Gray
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Battling evil with his son, Damian, at his side, Batman now realizes that the hardest part of the job may be trying to work together! As Batman and Robin try to adjust to their new partnership, a figure emerges from Bruce Wayne’s past: His name is NoBody, and he’s not happy that Batman Incorporated is shining a light on his own shadowy war against evil…

 

BATGIRL #1
Written by Gail Simone
Art by Ardian Syaf and Vicente Cifuentes
Cover by Adam Hughes
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Yes, it’s really happening! Barbara Gordon is back as Batgirl – and she’s going to have to face the city’s most horrifying new villains as well as the dark secrets from her past. You won’t want to miss this stunning debut issue from fan-favorite Birds of Prey writer Gail Simone!BATWOMAN #1
Written by J.H. Williams III and W. Haden Blackman
Art and cover by J.H. Williams III
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
At last! Batwoman’s new series begins, from the multiple award-winning creative team of J.H. Williams III and Haden Blackman! In “Hydrology,” part 1 of 5, Batwoman faces deadly new challenges in her war against Gotham City’s underworld – and new trials in her life as Kate Kane.Who or what is stealing children from the barrio, and for what vile purpose? Will Kate train her cousin, Bette Kane (a.k.a. Flamebird), as her new sidekick? How will she handle unsettling revelations about her father, Colonel Jacob Kane? And why is a certain government. 
 
NIGHTWING #1
Written by Kyle Higgins
Art and cover by Eddy Barrows and JP Mayer
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Dick Grayson flies high once more as Nightwing in a new series from hot new writer Kyle Higgins (Batman: Gates of Gotham)! And as he embraces his destiny, Haley’s Circus, the big top where Dick once performed, returns to Gotham City – bringing with it murder, mystery and superhuman evil. Nightwing must confront his past, among former friends and enemies from his circus days, while uncovering a much greater evil!
 
CATWOMAN #1
Written by Judd Winick
Art and cover by Guillem March
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
Meet Catwoman. She’s addicted to the night. Addicted to shiny objects. Addicted to Batman. Most of all, Catwoman is addicted to danger. She can’t help herself, and the truth is – she doesn’t want to. She’s good at being bad, and very bad at being good. Find out more about what makes Catwoman tick in this new series from writer Judd Winick (Batman: Under the Hood) and artist Guillem March (Gotham City Sirens)!
 
BIRDS OF PREY #1
Written by Duane Swierczynski
Art and cover by Jesus Saiz
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
One is wanted for a murder she didn’t commit. The other is on the run because she knows too much. They are Dinah Laurel Lance and Ev Crawford – a.k.a. Black Canary and Starling – and together, as Gotham City’s covert ops team, they’re taking down the villains other heroes can’t touch. But now they’ve attracted the attention of a grizzled newspaper reporter who wants to expose them, as well as a creepy, chameleon-like strike team that’s out to kill them.Don’t miss the start of this hard-hitting new series from mystery novelist/comics writer Duane Swierczynski (Expiration Date, Cable).

 

RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS #1
Written by Scott Lobdell
Art and cover by Kenneth Rocafort
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
No sooner has Batman’s former sidekick, Jason Todd, put his past as the Red Hood behind him than he finds himself cornered by a pair of modern day outlaws: Green Arrow’s rejected sidekick Arsenal, the damaged soldier of fortune, and the alien Starfire, a former prisoner of intergalactic war who won’t be chained again.As a loner, Jason has absolutely no interest in this motley crew of outlaws. So what’s he going to do when they choose the Red Hood as their leader? Find out in this hot new series from writer Scott Lobdell (WILDC.A.T.S, Uncanny X-Men), featuring art by rising star Kenneth Rocafort (Action Comics)!

 

GREEN LANTERN #1
Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Doug Mahnke and Christian Alamy
Cover by Ivan Reis and Joe Prado
Variant cover by Greg Capullo
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The red-hot Green Lantern team of writer Geoff Johns and artist Doug Mahnke introduce an unexpected new Lantern.

 

GREEN LANTERN CORPS #1
Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Art by Fernando Pasarin and Scott Hanna
Cover by Doug Mahnke and Christian Alamy
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
When deadly conflicts emerge across the universe, it’s up to Guy Gardner, John Stewart and an elite Green Lantern strike force to keep the peace – or else.

 

GREEN LANTERN: NEW GUARDIANS #1
Written by Tony Bedard
Art and cover by Tyler Kirkham and Batt
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Kyle Rayner has assembled the most powerful team in all the universe, selected from the full spectrum of corps. But can he even keep this volatile group together?

 

RED LANTERNS #1
Written by Peter Milligan
Art and cover by Ed Benes and Rob Hunter
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
Atrocitus and his Red Lantern Corps return in their own series, battling against injustice in the most bloody ways imaginable!

 

JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK #1
Written by Peter Milligan
Art by Mikel Janin
Cover by Ryan Sook
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The witch known as The Enchantress has gone mad, unleashing forces that not even the combined powers of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and Cyborg can stop. And if those heroes can’t handle the job, who will stand against this mystical madness?Shade the Changing Man, Madame Xanadu, Deadman, Zatanna and John Constantine may be our only hope – but how can we put our trust in beings whose very presence makes ordinary people break out in a cold sweat?
 
SWAMP THING #1
Written by Scott Snyder
Art and cover by Yanick Paquette
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
One of the world’s most iconic characters has returned to the heart of the DC Universe, and every step he takes will shake the foundations of the Earth! Alec Holland has his life back… but the Green has plans for it. A monstrous evil is rising in the desert, and it’ll take a monster of another kind to defend life as we know it!
 
ANIMAL MAN #1
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Travel Foreman and Dan Green
Cover by Travel Foreman
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
Buddy Baker has gone from “super” man to family man – but is he strong enough to hold his family together when Maxine, his young daughter, starts to manifest her own dangerous powers? Find out in this dramatic new series from writer Jeff Lemire (Sweet Tooth) and artist Travel Foreman (The Immortal Iron Fist).
 
FRANKENSTEIN, AGENT OF S.H.A.D.E. #1
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Alberto Ponticelli
Cover by J.G. Jones
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
It’s Frankenstein as you’ve never seen him before, in a dark new series from acclaimed writer Jeff Lemire (Sweet Tooth) and artist Alberto Ponticelli (Unknown Soldier)!Frankenstein is part of a network of strange beings who work for an even stranger government organization: The Super Human Advanced Defense Executive! But can he protect the world from threats even more horrifying than himself? And since he’s vilified for who and what he is, will he even want to take on this mission?
 
I, VAMPIRE #1
Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov
Art by Andrea Sorrentino
Cover by Jenny Frison
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
For hundreds of years, vampire Andrew Stanton kept mankind safe from the horrors of the supernatural world, thanks to a truce he made with his ex-lover Mary, the Queen of the Damned. But now that truce has reached a bloody end and Andrew must do everything in his power to stop Mary and her dark forces from going on a killing spree – and she plans to start with the heroes of the DC Universe!
 
RESURRECTION MAN #1
Written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning
Art by Fernando Dagnino
Cover by Ivan Reis and Joe Prado
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
It’s the return of Mitch Shelly – and he’s still dead.Resurrection Man can’t stay dead for long, though – and with each rebirth comes new and unexpected powers. But his many returns have not gone unnoticed, and forces are gathering to learn what’s so special about him – and to see which of them will finally stop Resurrection Man dead.
 
DEMON KNIGHTS #1
Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Diogenes Neves and Oclair Albert
Cover by Tony S. Daniel
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Set in the Dark Ages of the DC Universe, a barbarian horde is massing to crush civilization. It’s fallen to Madame Xanadu and Jason Blood, the man with a monster inside him, to stand in their way – though the demon Etrigan has no interest in protecting anyone or anything other than himself! It’ll take more than their own power to stop an army fueled by bloodlust and dark sorcery, and some very surprising heroes – and villains – will have no choice but to join the fray!
 
STORMWATCH #1
Written by Paul Cornell
Art and cover by Miguel Sepulveda
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
They are Stormwatch, a dangerous super human police force whose existence is kept secret from the world. Directly following the ominous events of Superman #1, Adam One leads half the Stormwatch team to recover the [INFORMATION REDACTED] from deep in the Himalayas. Meanwhile, Jack Hawksmoor and the rest of the Stormwatch crew look to recruit two of the deadliest super humans on the planet: Midnighter and Apollo! And if they say no? Perhaps the Martian Manhunter can change their minds…
 
VOODOO #1
Written by Ron Marz
Art and cover by Sami Basri
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
Who is Voodoo? Is she hero, villain – or both? Learn the truth about Priscilla Kitaen as she leaves a trail of violence across America. Discover the new DC Universe through her eyes, because the things she sees are not always what they seem…
 
GRIFTER #1
Written by Nathan Edmondson
Art by CAFU
Cover by CAFU and BIT
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED TThe DC Universe’s most wanted man stars in his own series! Cole Cash is a charming grifter few can resist. And yet he’s about to be branded a serial killer when he begins hunting and exterminating inhuman creatures hidden in human form – creatures only he can see!Can the biggest sweet talker of all time talk his way out of this one when even his brother thinks he’s gone over the edge?
 
DEATHSTROKE #1
Written by Kyle Higgins
Art by Joe Bennett and Art Thibert
Cover by Simon Bisley
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
“Friends die, family disappoints, but a legacy… That lives forever.”Slade Wilson is the best mercenary in the DC Universe, and he’s been doing this a long time. Some might say too long. But they’ll learn: Never turn your back on Deathstroke the Terminator. He won’t quit, no matter how high the stakes. Kyle Higgins (Batman: Gates of Gotham) and Joe Bennett (Teen Titans) team up to bring you the finest in mayhem and gore.
 
SUICIDE SQUAD #1
Written by Adam Glass
Art by Marco Rudy
Cover by Ryan Benjamin
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
They’re a team of death-row super villains recruited by the government to take on missions so dangerous – they’re sheer suicide!Harley Quinn! Deadshot! King Shark! Defeated and imprisoned, they’re being interrogated about their mission – and about who’s pulling the strings behind this illegal operation. Who will be the first to crack under the pressure?
 
O.M.A.C. #1
Written by Dan Didio and Keith Giffen
Art and cover by Keith Giffen and Scott Koblish
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The all-seeing Brother Eye satellite has unleashed a new beast upon the DC Universe in this smashing new series! Kevin Kho has become an unwilling participant in a war between Checkmate and Brother Eye as he is transformed into the One Machine Army Corp known only as O.M.A.C.!
 
BLACKHAWKS #1
Written by Mike Costa
Art and cover by Ken Lashley
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Welcome to a world waging a new kind of war that’s faster and more brutal than ever before. It’s fought by those who would make the innocent their targets, using computers, smart weapons and laser-guided missiles. The new enemy is hard to find – and closer to home than we think.Between us and them stand the Blackhawks, an elite force of military specialists equipped with the latest in cutting-edge hardware and vehicles. Their mission: Kill the bad guys before they kill us.
 
MEN OF WAR #1
Written by Ivan Brandon
Art by Tom Derenick
Cover by Viktor Kalvachev
On sale September 7 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T+
On the ground and on the front lines, a young, headstrong soldier known as Joe Rock assumes command of Easy Company – a team of ex-military men turned contractors. Will they survive the battle-scarred landscape carved by the DC Universe’s Super-Villains? Find out in this explosive new series from Ivan Brandon (Viking, Doc Savage) and Tom Derenick (Justice League of America)!
 
ALL-STAR WESTERN #1
Written by Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti
Art and cover by Moritat
On sale September 28 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T+
Even when Gotham City was just a one-horse town, crime was rampant – and things only get worse when bounty hunter Jonah Hex comes to town. Can Amadeus Arkham, a pioneer in criminal psychology, enlist Hex’s special brand of justice to help the Gotham Police Department track down a vicious serial killer? Find out in this new series from Hex writers Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti, with lush artwork by Moritat (The Spirit)!
 
TEEN TITANS #1
Written by Scott Lobdell
Art and cover by Brett Booth and Norm Rapmund
On sale September 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Tim Drake, Batman’s former sidekick, is back in action when an international organization seeks to capture, kill or co-opt super-powered teenagers. As Red Robin, he’s going to have to team up with the mysterious and belligerent powerhouse thief known as Wonder Girl and the hyperactive speedster calling himself Kid Flash to stand any chance at all against a living, breathing weapon with roots in another world! They – along with a few other tortured teen heroes – will be the Teen Titans in this new series from writer Scott Lobdell (WILDC.A.T.S, Uncanny X-Men) and artist Brett Booth (Justice League of America)!
 
STATIC SHOCK #1
Written by Scott McDaniel and John Rozum
Art and cover by Scott McDaniel and Jonathan Glapion
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The brilliant, slightly awkward high school student Virgil Hawkins transforms into the cocky electromagnetic hero Static! A mysterious tragedy forces the Hawkins family to relocate from Dakota to New York City! Virgil embarks upon new adventures in a new high school and a new internship at S.T.A.R. Labs!As Static, he dons a new uniform and establishes a new secret headquarters! But is he ready to take on the new villains who lurk in New York City’s underworld?

 

HAWK AND DOVE #1
Written by Sterling Gates
Art and cover by Rob Liefeld
On sale September 7 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Hank Hall is not happy. He’s not happy to have Dawn Granger as a new partner in his war on crime. He’s not happy that she’s dating the ghostly Super Hero, Deadman. He’s not happy to learn that someone is trying to plunge the United States into a new civil war! Now it’s up to Hawk and Dove to root out the forces behind this conflict and stop them before they turn the U.S. into a wasteland!And who is the monster lurking in the shadows, watching Hawk and Dove from afar? Find out in this new series from Sterling Gates (Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost) and artist Rob Liefeld (X-Force, Youngblood)!
 
BLUE BEETLE #1
Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Ig Guara and Ruy Jose
Cover by Tyler Kirkham and Sal Regla
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
It’s not easy being Jaime Reyes. He has to deal with high school, family and all the drama that comes with being a teenager. Also, he’s linked to a powerful scarab created by an alien race known as the Reach who seek to subjugate planets – or annihilate them. It’s up to one teen hero to turn this instrument of destruction into a force for good.
 
LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #1
Written by Paul Levitz
Art by Francis Portela
Cover by Karl Kerschl
On sale September 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
The Legion of Super-Heroes has been decimated by the worst disaster in its history. Now, the students of the Legion Academy must rise to the challenge of helping the team rebuild – but a threat of almost unstoppable power is rising at the edge of Dominator space, and if the new recruits fail, the Legion Espionage Squad may be the first casualties in a war that could split worlds in half!

 

LEGION LOST #1
Written by Fabian Nicieza
Art and cover by Pete Woods
On sale September 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Seven heroes from the 31st century have traveled back to the present day. Their mission: Save their future from annihilation. But when the future tech they brought with them fails, they find themselves trapped in a nightmarish world that, for them, is the ultimate struggle to survive!Don’t miss the start of this all-new Legion series illustrated by Pete Woods – fresh off his spectacular run on Action Comics – who is joined by writer Fabian Nicieza (Red Robin)!

 

This is all very exciting to me, since it means I can finally start reading some of these series without just starting in the middle of a storyarc with not a lot of prior knowledge. What are your thoughts and this whole reboot? Let us know in the comment section below! 

/Gamecultist

Character Bio – Kratos

Kratos is the main protagonist and anti-hero of the God of War series. Born a Spartan, Kratos held the military rank of General, before exacting his revenge on the Olympians.

Early LifeEdit Early Life section

Living in Sparta, Kratos was monitored, like all other younglings. During several tests, those that were deemed fit were to stay in Sparta to be trained as Spartan protectors, while those deemed unfit would be sent to the mountains, sealing their fate. Kratos, already feisty and aggressive at his young age, along with his brother, Deimos, trained, and dreamt of joining the Spartan army. On an ill-fated day, when the young brothers were training outside their home, the city was raided by the gods, Ares and Athena , and their army of centaurs, in search of the Marked Warrior. Ares, seeing Deimos’ birthmark as a sign of the prophecy, then snatched him away. In anger and desperation, Kratos jumped to attack the god and save his brother, only for Ares to smack Kratos back in to a pile of wood, leaving him with a scar. Kratos’ scar, delivered by Ares.

Insulted by this, Ares raised his sword to kill Kratos, but was stopped by Athena reminding him that they had what they were looking for. Before leaving, Athena apologized to Kratos, and disappeared into flames. The loss of his brother left an indelible mark on Kratos, as he vowed to never falter again, Kratos adorned a red tattoo on his body in honor of Deimos, a tattoo in the very image of his brother’s birthmark. Later on in time, he had married Lysandra, and had a daughter, Calliope. 

Calliope, however, was the victim of a plague and was deemed weak, thus, she would be thrown into a chasm and left to die, according to Spartan law. Kratos then heard from an elder the capabilities of the healing elixir known as Ambrosia. Determined to save his daughter, Kratos set out on a journey for the Ambrosia, not knowing that Ares, God of War, had chosen him to be his champion in the wager of the Gods, a contest with the ultimate goal being the capture of the Ambrosia. He later encountered a healer who gave him the Flames of Apollo in order to aid him in his quest. Over the course of his journey, an army of Spartans joined him, along with Captain Nikos. Eventually, he encountered Herodius, Poseidon’s champion, and killed him, with Herodius’ army slain by the Spartans. After taking the ship, Poseidon, angered at Kratos for costing him the wager, unleashed a handful of hazards at sea to kill the Spartans, but failed, as Kratos and the Spartans made it to land. Later on, Kratos encountered Artemis’ champion, Pothia, and killed her as well, her army also falling victim to the Spartans. In fear that Kratos would defeat his champion, Alrik, Hades sent a torrent of fire through the sky in order to kill Kratos, but failed, instead killing many men in Kratos’ army, including Nikos. Coming across the Ambrosia, he encountered Helios’ Champion, who was, too, killed by the Spartan. After retrieving the Ambrosia and returning to his Spartan army, Alrik and his Barbarian army battled the Spartans for the Ambrosia, as Alrik’s Father is very ill, and is in need of the elixir. After a grueling battle between the two leaders, Kratos successfully captured the Ambrosia (at the cost of his own men) and summoned an army of Rocs to continuously torture Alrik. Kratos then returned to Sparta, healed Calliope, and was promoted to the title of a Captain by the King of Sparta.

Over the course of his battles, Kratos’ brutality and war-hunger increased. He won battles through unorthodox, but effective tactics. However, Kratos and his Spartan army would prove no match for the merciless Barbarian tribes from the east. Outnumbered and overpowered, the Spartans began losing the battle quickly. Kratos, whom was nearly killed by the Barbarians’ leader, Alrik, desperately pledged allegiance to Ares, the God of War, in exchange for victory. The God accepted, killing the Barbarians, and giving Kratos the Blades of Chaos as a sign of his servitude. Kratos served Ares loyally, raiding villages and spreading chaos in his name.

However, during a raid on a village of Athena’s followers, Ares tricked Kratos into killing his wife and child in a fit of blind rage. Ares justified his trickery as a means to make Kratos the perfect warrior. Stricken with horror and grief, Kratos left the bodies to be burned within the temple as he cursed Ares’ name. The village oracle in turn cursed Kratos, forcing him to forever wear the ashes of his dead family on his skin. From that day forward, he was known as The Ghost of Sparta; his skin now ‘pale as the moon’ from the ashes that coated him.

Distraught, Kratos was haunted by terrible nightmares over the death of his family. In due time, the memories and nightmares began to consume him, driving him to the brink of madness. Abandoning Sparta, Kratos traveled throughout Greece, finding small solace in sailing the Aegean Sea. To find peace again, he pledged himself to the other Gods of Olympus, in the hope that they would one day relieve him of his burden.

To other mortals, he was now marked by his white skin. The knowledge of his past actions had been shown to repulse normal people to the point where they would rather die than allow him to save their lives. He became known as the personification of cruelty and selfishness.

Kratos would serve the Gods for ten years following the death of his family, but he never lost his desire for revenge against Ares, the God who stole everything from him. 

Service to the GodsEdit Service to the Gods section

Is this all you would have me do? Is there nothing else!?” – Kratos

During Kratos’s ten years of servitude (despite destroying cities and taking loot), the greatest task given to him came after he joined the army of Attica in their struggle against the invading Persian Army and the great beast they brought forth, the Basilisk. After a lengthy battle, Kratos killed both the Persian King and the Basilisk, and, upon speaking to the Gods, he witnessed the Sun disappearing from the sky, leaving the world in eternal darkness.

As the only presence of light was seen somewhere in the distance, Kratos journeyed there, only to discover the Temple of Helios and the city of Marathon. Kratos realized that Helios, the God of Sun, had been captured by an unknown force, allowing Morpheus, the God of Dreams, to place the other Olympians under his spell, putting them into a deep slumber, allowing him to invade and seize control of the land by covering Greece under his Black Fog. Fighting through Morpheus’ minions, Kratos entered the temple of the Sun God, and after learning of the events that transpired, he was tasked by Eos, the sister of Helios, to awaken her brother’s Fire Steeds, which would take Kratos to where their master was being held captive.

After having awakened the Helios’ Steeds, Kratos was taken to the Underworld, where he saw Helios’ glowing light in the distance, right before the Pillar of the World. Kratos fought his way through Hades’ domain, acquired the mighty Gauntlet of Zeus, went down into Tartarus, and killed Charon, the ferryman of the dead. Kratos then discovered the Titan Atlas had somehow escaped Tartarus and captured Helios.

Throughout his journey, Kratos was plagued by visions of his daughter, Calliope, and the song she played on the flute he himself once presented her. When Kratos reached the Pillar of the World and the Temple of Persephone that lay nearby, he had already forgotten his task, thinking only of reuniting with his daughter. He encountered Persephone, Hades’ wife, who revealed he could be with his daughter again, if he gave away all of his powers to the Forsaken Tree. Desperate to see his daughter again, Kratos did, and thereupon entered the Elysium fields, where he met with his daughter and was seen happy for the first time since he became the Ghost of Sparta.

Persephone, however, appeared before him, revealing that it was she who rescued Atlas and asked him to capture Helios. With his help, she devised a scheme to destroy the Pillar of the World, thus killing the Gods and all of mankind as well. She taunted Kratos with the knowledge that he may live with his daughter for a short period, but would ultimately see her die again, upon the completion of her plan. Kratos then forced himself to become the Ghost of Sparta again by killing the innocent souls of Elysium, and regaining his powers. Whilst giving pursuit to Persephone, he realized he would never have the chance to be with his daughter again, and, hearing her crying behind him, his hatred for the Gods he served grew even stronger still.

Kratos succeeded in killing Persephone and chaining Atlas to the ground above the Pillar of the World, thus completing his task. Before he left the Underworld, Atlas asked Kratos if he truly believed the Gods would keep their promise. Kratos replied it was the only thing he could hope for now, since he had lost his welcome in Elysium. With the use of the Fire Steeds, Kratos then escaped the Underworld, but found himself too exhausted from the journey, and fell from the Chariot, to the ground below. Subsequently, he was saved by Athena and Helios, who stripped him of his powers and equipment, leaving him powerless and unconscious upon the cliffs of the Aegean Sea.

The Final TaskEdit The Final Task section

“Ares, you will die for what you did that night!” – Kratos

Five years passed since Kratos defeated Atlas and Persephone, and after having killed the sea monster known as the Hydra, Kratos received a chance to seek his revenge on the God of War and rid himself of the terrible nightmares that haunted him. He was ordered by Athena to seek out Pandora’s Box in order to help him destroy Ares.

Kratos made his way through the war-ravaged city of Athens, killing countless minions of Ares and even the infamous Medusa, the Queen of the Gorgons. Following the Athenian Oracle’s instructions, Kratos traversed the Desert of Lost Souls and found Pandora’s Temple atop the back of the Titan Cronos. After having summoned the Titan by using the Titan Horn, he climbed to the top, made his way through the temple, and ultimately retrieved Pandora’s Box, being the first human ever to do so. Sensing Kratos had obtained the Box, Ares, still in Athens, taking a huge broken pillar, hurled it towards Pandora’s Temple. The pillar impaled Kratos into a wall. As he slowly died, Harpies took the Box back to Ares, while Kratos was sent to the Underworld. When falling down towards the River Styx, Kratos grabbed hold of the Captain’s leg, who had previously died at the hands of Kratos, climbed onto a ledge, and kicked the Captain down below into the River Styx. Reaching the top again, Kratos managed to escape the clutches of Hades. Meeting up with the Gravedigger again, whom he had met earlier at the Oracle’s Temple, he then reacquired Pandora’s Box from Ares, and used it to grow tremendously in size, as well as receiving a substantial amount of power in order to battle Ares on an even footing. After a vicious fight, Ares trapped Kratos into a void where several demonic incarnations of himself attempted to kill phantom versions of his family. Kratos attempted to save them, but watched helplessly as Ares stripped him of the Blades of Chaos, and used them to kill his family again. Kratos, now distraught and vulnerable, nearly met his end at the hands of Ares, but took notice of the Blade of the Gods, proceeding to use it to finally destroy the God of War.

 

Though his past had been forgiven, the Gods could not relieve him of his nightmares. His last hope taken from him, Kratos attempted to commit suicide by jumping from a cliff. Athena had a different plan for the Spartan. She saved his life and offered him the empty throne of the God of War on Olympus. He accepted the offer, settling upon the fallen god’s throne, and becoming the new God of War.

Kratos, New God of WarEdit Kratos, New God of War section

“My Lord, Kratos! Another city is ready to fall! Soon all will know the glory of Sparta!” – The Last Spartan

Kratos, shortly after becoming the new God of War, entered Tartarus once again in search for the Ambrosia, but with the intent to destroy it, for Disciples of Ares desired to utilize the Ambrosia in order to resurrect their deceased God. Throughout his journey, Kratos received flashbacks about his first quest for the Ambrosia. As the new God of War marched through Tartarus, he encountered a giant arachnid who was sent to kill him. However, it was unsuccessful, as Kratos killed both the spider and its children. After pulling his blades out from the beast, Athena spoke to him in an attempt to warn him about the new dangers on the path he took once before. Kratos then shrugged off her warnings, confident that nothing would stop him. Later, Kratos encountered Athena again, and was told by the goddess that it is now the dead he must fear. Kratos simply moved along, finding the dead bodies of the Spartans he had abandoned in his earlier quest for the healing elixir. The Spartans then rose from the dead, ready to exact vengeance on Kratos for abandoning them. They failed, however, as Kratos managed to kill them all. Upon entering the island once again, the island then revealed itself to be a monstrous beast named Gyges, who vowed vengeance on Kratos after one hundred of his arms were burned off in the Spartan’s battle against Helios’ Champion. Kratos, however, revealed his intentions and incinerated Gyges with the Flames of Apollo, destroying the Tree of Life and all its Ambrosia. He then left the island, knowing that the disciples of Ares would hunt him down for destroying the last hope they had at reviving their fallen God.

Later on, Kratos has a visio of his mother, being held at the Temple of Poseidon in the City of Atlantis. He argues with Athena while en-route to Poseidon’s kingdom, only then to be attacked by Scylla. Shortly after Kratos sends the monster fleeing and has a vision of his childhood, training with his brother Deimos. He enters the temple and encounters his long presumed dead mother Callisto, who then tells him his father Zeus had taken her there and that Deimos is still alive; trapped and being tortured in the Domain of Death. Both shocked and angered, Kratos asks why she lied to him all those years ago and who his father was. Callisto tries to tell him but is transformed into a hideous beast, forcing Kratos to kill her. Enraged over the gods having taken yet another member of his family, Kratos embarked on a journey to save his brother. At one point, Kratos encountered the Titan Thera, imprisoned inside a volcano, who told him he would be incapable of leaving if he did not free her. After freeing her, Kratos obtained Thera’s Bane, and left the volcano. Upon his descent, he impaled Scylla, who had been pursuing him relentlessly ever since he arrived. Before returning home, Kratos then found himself under attack by Erinys, daughter to Thanatos. Upon Erinys’ defeat, Kratos found the key to saving his brother in the Temple of Ares. The Spartan then returned to the sinking city of Atlantis, entered the Domain of Death, and continued onwards. Finally coming across Deimos, deep in the Temple of Thanatos, Kratos set Deimos free, only to be attacked by him, as Deimos blamed Kratos for not helping him when in dire need. Witnessing the battle from close by, Thanatos finally intervened, and snatched Deimos. Barely able to stand from the fight, Kratos followed Thanatos and Deimos to the Suicide Bluffs, and rescued Deimos from falling to his death. After being reunited, and having reconciled their differences, the Spartan brothers took arms, and joined forces against Thanatos. In a climactic battle, Thanatos took Deimos’ life, only to have an enraged Kratos take his in return. Kratos then took the lifeless body of his brother to his grave. After putting Deimos in the grave, dug by the enigmatic Grave Digger, Kratos stated his brother was now free. He once again attempted to kill himself at the bluffs, but ultimately relented, asking himself what he had become. The Grave Digger, who had been close by, revealed he had become “Death, the Destroyer of Worlds”, before vanishing. Athena then pleaded to Kratos to forgive her, and attempted to empower him to full Godhood, but saw her pleas ignored, as Kratos promised her the gods would pay for their actions.

During the siege of an unknown city, while aiding the Spartans in his mortal form, he was attacked by Argos, Hera’s pet. Before he could defeat the beast however, an unknown Assassin killed it in his stead, apparently trying to destroy his reputation on Olympus. Kratos pursued the Assassin, but saw his progress halted by the minions of Hades himself. The God of War did not surrender, and continued his relentless pursuit, only to be stopped by Ceryx, messenger of the Gods, who allowed the Assassin to escape. Ceryx, in the name of Zeus, ordered Kratos to sway pursuit. Providing no valid reason, Ceryx only managed to infuriate the God of War. Kratos then killed the messenger on the spot, instantly realizing Zeus would not stand for this action.

When Kratos decided to lead his Spartans to Rhodes, Athena, still concerned with Kratos, implored him not to continue the endless wars, as the other Gods grew weary of his brutal warfare. Kratos chose not to heed her warning, and instead plunged down to Earth, aiding his army in further destroying the city. Moments after, an eagle, who Kratos assumed to be Athena, robbed him of his immense size, shrinking him back down to mortal size. The eagle then flew past the Colossus of Rhodes, which was then brought to life. Kratos fought a long and arduous battle with the giant, until Zeus offered help in the form of the Blade of Olympus, which the King-God himself used to end the Titan War. Infusing all of his powers and immortality into the blade, Kratos took down his foe. As he shouted at the heavens, the Colossus’ falling hand crushed him. Severely wounded, and stripped of all his powers, Kratos knew his rescue lay with the Blade. Limping towards it, the eagle came soaring down, revealing itself to be Zeus in disguise. Zeus informs Kratos of the fact that he didn’t want to suffer the same fate as Ares, demanding that Kratos serve him. However, when Kratos refused, he was viciously attacked by Zeus, who killed him by driving the Blade into his abdomen.

Changing His FateEdit Changing His Fate section

You will never control your fate, Kratos!” – Clotho

After being killed by Zeus, Kratos was dragged down by the arms of the Underworld. The Titan Gaia, who had been watching him his entire life, then decided to intervene. She saved Kratos, sealed his wound, and gave him the strength to escape death once again. Climbing out from the Underworld, and back into Rhodes, he then instructed the last surviving soldier to return to Sparta, in order to prepare for another battle. Kratos then took Pegasus, a gift from Gaia, and attempted to fly back to Olympus so he could exact his revenge, but discovered that he could no longer enter Olympus, as he was no longer a God. Instead, Gaia instructed Pegasus and Kratos to seek out the Sisters of Fate. She informed him the Sisters had the power to travel back in time, which he needed to use to reclaim the Blade of Olympus, and take his revenge on Zeus. Kratos then first traveled to Typhon’s lair, where he met with Prometheus, who pleaded him to release him from his torment in the Flames of Olympus. Kratos, having previously stolen Typhon’s Bane from the Titan, used it to break Prometheus’ last chain, sending him down into the flames, burning him alive, and finally releasing him. and his ashes granted him the power of the Titans.

Kratos safely arrived on the Island of Creation, where he met Theseus, who guarded the Steeds of Time. They fought to determine the best warrior of Greece; with Kratos emerging the victor, after having bashed Theseus’ head against a door, and skewering him with his own spear. Kratos later defeated Perseus (who tried to save his beloved Andromeda), the Barbarian King (who escaped Hades’ torment to change his fate), and Icarus (who had gone crazy). After having defeated them all, he once again fell prey to the Underworld, where he once again met with Atlas. Intent on crushing the former God for his imprisonment, Atlas ultimately ceased his attempt when Kratos revealed he was now an enemy of Zeus, and sought to change his fate in order to destroy Zeus. After Atlas aided him back to the surface, he continued his journey into the Palace of Fates. There, unbeknownst to him, he encountered the remaining Spartan warrior, only this time shrouded in darkness. Not knowing they were facing, both warriors intended on reaching the Sisters themselves, therefore intent on killing the other. After a quick battle, the Last Spartan fell prey to Kratos’ Blades. The Spartan warrior informed Kratos of the fact that Zeus had now destroyed Sparta, causing Kratos to be overtaken with anger, proceeding to shout to the Heavens. Blinded by anger, he was then attacked by the Kraken. Held firm in its grasp, Kratos then saw an astral projection of his wife, which was actually Gaia in disguise, encouraging him to go on or face eternal torment in Hades. Kratos was informed of the fact that the Titans wanted the Spartan to lead them into battle. Kratos, ultimately regaining his will to live, killed the Krakken, and continued his journey.

Kratos then entered the Sisters’ throne Room, met with Lahkesis, and was told the Fates’ decided upon the destinies of all, and how she had allowed him to come as far as he did. She then proclaimed it was not his destiny to kill Zeus, with Kratos declaring they no longer controlled his destiny, and engaged her in battle. Instantly, Lahkesis summoned her sister Atropos, who took Kratos back in time, to his battle with Ares, determined to destroy the Blade of the Gods, so his past and present self would cease to exist. Kratos managed to subdue her, and teleported themselves back to the present. Now fighting both Sisters, he managed to trap them in a mirror, and shattered it, trapping them in the past. Kratos then proceeded onto Clotho, who warned him not to go forward with his manipulation of fate. Kratos then killed the obese Sister of Fate, took control of his own fate in the Loom Chamber, and went back in time. Arriving in the past, he took the Blade of Olympus out of a surprised Zeus’ hands, pulling it out of his other self. Zeus and Kratos then fought on the Summit of Sacrifice. Kratos and Zeus engaged in a vicious battle, with Kratos fighting Zeus in his full Olympian size, as well as his normal mortal size. During the battle Zeus unleashed a powerful lightning storm, in which Kratos yielded defeat and surrendered. He then asked the King of Gods to release him from his torment, to which Zeus stated, “I will release you from your life my son, but your torment is just beginning.” Kratos then dodged the blow, pinned Zeus to a rock with his Blades, took the Blade of Olympus and drove it into Zeus’ abdomen. Intending to kill Zeus in the same way Zeus killed Kratos in Rhodes, he was then stopped by Athena, who was determined to defend Olympus. As Zeus tried to flee, Kratos took another swing at him, only for Athena to take the blow. Her dying words revealed Zeus to be his father. Zeus, wanting only to break the cycle of the son killing the father, cared not for the well-being of Greece, only for his own position and life.

Athena begged Kratos to stop his revenge, informing him that all of Olympus would unite against him. Kratos revealed that he would destroy all of the Gods, proceeding to travel back in time to the Titanomachy, bringing the Titans to the present in order to battle the Olympians for control.

The Second Great WarEdit The Second Great War section

The hands of death could not defeat me, the Sisters of Fate could not hold me, and YOU will not see the end of this day! I WILL have my revenge!!” – Kratos

Picking up right where God of War II left off, God of War III saw Zeus discussing the actions of the rogue God of War, Kratos, who was ‘commanding’ a small army of Titans rescued from the Great War, using the power of the Fates. The Olympians immediately rushed to battle as Hermes sped down the very peaks of Olympus, Hercules sent out his troops down into the fray, Hades, in giant form, lunged off the Mountain and engaged several Titans, and Poseidon, using his aquakinesis, shot down from Olympus like a torpedo, and struck a death-blow through Epimetheus’ chest, sending the Titan into a watery grave. The God of the Sea then manifested himself as a massive water being and spawned several Hippocampi to aid him in battle. With Poseidon as their greatest threat in battle, having already decimated numerous Titan, and now going after Gaia herself, Kratos engaged the God of the Sea and, drawing him into Gaia’s grasp, managed to knock a weakened Poseidon out of his godly form, and onto a separate platform. The two berated each other briefly before Kratos walked up and battered the Lord of the Sea severely, finally gouging out his eyes and snapping his neck as he tossed him off into the ocean. With Poseidon’s death, the seas cataclysmed and ocean levels rose significantly, causing a flood that engulfed the entire world, destroying almost all of mankind, save those on top of Olympia.

After killing Poseidon, Gaia and Kratos reached Zeus’ pavilion, where the king of the gods angrily anticipated Kratos’ arrival and, at last, assaulted both with a mighty blast of lightning, that blew a portion of Gaia’s arm clean off, sending the two spiraling down Olympus. Having stabbed the Blade of Olympus to in Gaia’s back to hold onto, Kratos was unable to hang on as Gaia fought to survive. Gaia shouted in pain, as she told him he was but a pawn, and was deemed expendable now that the Titans had reached Zeus. Embittered, Kratos tumbled into the underworld. Contemplating his life as he lurched through the River Styx and its caverns, he resolved to escape Hades yet again, and destroy Zeus once and for all. On his way to Hades’ chamber, after being sucked of nearly all of his power by the dead souls of Styx, he met the ghost of Athena, who claimed to have reached a “higher existence”, and was once again willing to help Kratos exact his revenge. With Kratos suspicious of this turn of events, Athena explained how she saw truths were she did not before. As a sign of faith, she transformed Kratos’ ruined blades into the Blades of Exile, to help him survive the Underworld and the foes that awaited him. She then continued to define his quest, as she ordered him to find and extinguish the Flame of Olympus, in order to truly defeat Zeus.

Kratos made his way through the Underworld, meeting lost souls, encountering The Judges, and visiting Hephaestus several times, gaining more and more information about the secrets of Olympus, his adopted daughter Pandora, who was the key to Pandora’s Box, and Zeus, all along finding mysterious scrawls that he silently acknowledged to be from various people in his past. Finally, having entered Hades’ Palace, and finding the coffin-wed body of Persephone that Hades had restored, he engaged the Lord of the Underworld himself inside of a dark cavern. Kratos and Hades proved evenly matched, until a bloodthirsty Spartan managed to rip off his helmet, stole his Claws, and stole Hades’ own soul by absorbing it into the Claws. Hades, without a soul and now dead, caused all souls in the Underworld to go rampant. Escaping the Underworld through a Hyperion Gate, Kratos continued his journey up along Olympus, now facing both the Titans and the Gods. Defeating Hermes by slicing his legs off, he took his boots, mercilessly pummeled his own half-brother Hercules to death with the Cestus, snapped Hera’s neck after she insulted Pandora, encountered a radiant Aphrodite and her handmaidens in the goddess’ chamber, and finally arrived at the Flame’s chamber. Inside the Chamber, in the presence of Pandora, whom he had previously freed from the Labyrinth, he began to have second thoughts and refused to let Pandora sacrifice her life. In turn, she refused as well, stating she did not want to be treated as a child, and how she had to embrace her destiny, only to be interrupted and apprehended by Zeus himself.
 

Kratos, demanding that Zeus let go of Pandora, saw Zeus retort he should not confuse Pandora with his own flesh and blood, but mused that he already had. He cited the destruction of Olympus as proof of Kratos’ need for atonement for the murder of his family. Kratos snarled that he only saw what he had come to destroy. He then engaged in battle with his father, while Olympus crumbled around them. Pandora tried to run into the Flame, intent on pacifying it, as Kratos attempted to stop her. However, due to inadvertently prodding Zeus’ pleads how Kratos should not “fail her like he did his family”, Kratos released Pandora, attacking Zeus in a fit of rage, only to be stunned by the Flame’s dissipation. Kratos then opened the Box once again, only to discover it was empty. Zeus mocked him for “another stunning failure”, and went outside to recover, while Kratos’ fury boiled even further. Outside, father and son met again on the pavilion. But before either could claim victory, the platform suddenly shook rapidly, as a reawakened Gaia attempted to crush the pavilion between her hands. Seeing no other exit, Zeus and Kratos fled inside her chest, dueled near her heart, and sucked the life out of Gaia’s heart. A rejuvenated Kratos finally bested Zeus, impaling him with the Blade of Olympus against Gaia’s heart, killing both of them.

Awakening amidst cracked earth, Kratos found Zeus’ body impaled on a rock, and extracted the blade callously. But Zeus’ spirit, consumed by some lasting hatred for his infidel son, attacked Kratos, draining him of his willpower and anger, instead filling him with fear, and a sense of loss, bringing him on the verge of death. Trapped inside his own mind, taunted by his haunting memories, and his father, Kratos was then aided by Pandora, whose spirit lived on, abolishing the various torments of his soul. Overcoming these hurtles with a feeling of Hope, Kratos returned to the physical world and managed to free himself from Zeus’ chocking grip. He then attacked his spirit, forcing him back into his own body, which Kratos then violently and relentlessly battered into a bloody pulp, ending Zeus’ reign once and for all…

Arriving to congratulate Kratos, Athena requested Kratos to turn over the power he claimed from Pandora’s Box. Kratos replied to Athena that there was nothing inside. Believing Pandora had died in vain, only to serve his need for vengeance, Kratos was suddenly struck with remorse over her death. Athena did not believe him however, as when the evils of the Titanomachy were first sealed into the box, she placed ‘the most powerful weapon in the world’ with them, to counteract the evils. She demanded Kratos to return the power he had obtained, as it rightfully belonged to her. For now that the world was cleansed by chaos, she would rebuild it under her rule, using the power of hope. Athena quickly came to realize however, that when Kratos first opened the box to kill Ares, the evils infected the gods of Olympus, taking hold of them. As the evils took hold of the gods, the power of hope instead infused itself into Kratos. Buried beneath all the layers of guilt, anger, and the need for revenge, Hope was finally released when Kratos finally learned to forgive his past deeds, thus releasing its power. Asking Kratos again, he refused, instead impaling himself onto the Blade, thereby releasing Hope into the mortal world, for humanity to embrace. An action that Athena would clearly despise, as she removed the Blade from his chest, uttering the world was not ready to harness this vast power, and how Kratos had disappointed her. Athena then left, leaving a laughing Kratos to die, his vengeance finally complete.

In a post-credits scene, the phoenix-engraved mural where Kratos’ body lay was now empty, as a trail of blood lead back to the sea that now consumed the world … In any case, I doubt we’ve seen the last of Kratos.

/Gamecultist

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Hands-on – InFAMOUS 2

The first inFamous was a pretty good game, but it missed just that little bit extra for me at least. Sometimes frustrating and repetitive missions (The Reapers put surveillance equipment on my building!) and a story that didn’t seem move forward until the end: the game lacked dynamic. And that is something that’s just not done by a superhero (or villain) with enough electricity running through his body to power half of New York City. Can InFamous 2 deliver what the first installment couldn’t?

More dynamic

The fact that InFamous 2 is literally buzzing with dynamism becomes clear almost in the first minutes of gameplay. Just as Cole is ready to leave for New Marais with NSA-agent Kuo and his friend Zeke to prepare for the coming of ‘The Beast’, the big evil thing that was referenced in inFamous 1, the latter appears in Empire City. The pier you’re standing on is shaking, people are running away in panic and the world around you appears to be ending with all the explosions and smoke that fills your screen. It’s not the prettiest game on the PS3 à la Crysis 2, but whatever happens the game keeps on running smoothly. The chaos in Empire City is only the beginning, but the tone is set, especially when you see that after a fruitless battle with The Beast Empire City is leveled to the ground. Cole sees no other option than to flee to New Marais.

The lost confrontation makes for an excellent motivation to become stronger and take revenge on your new arch-enemy. The game constantly reminds you of your mission to defeat The Beast, without ever becoming frustrating. On the pause screen and after completing important missions you can see how far The Beast is from New Marais (and your next confrontation), and news reports of the trail of destruction The Beast leaves in its wake. The Beast will not appear before you completed all the missions and gathered the necessary powers, but the effect remains the same. It really gives you the sense of impending doom and urgency to gather all your powers.

Depth

The story is also better this time around. You leave for New Marais with a clear goal, namely becoming stronger, but it soon becomes clear that your task is more complex than just using a device called the Ray Field Inhibitor to gather new powers. The Beast isn’t your only problem, it seems. New Marais is ‘protected’ by the dictator Joseph Bertrand and his militia. The man doesn’t like strangers with powers and wants to keep the city clean and pure. What’s more is that he blames Cole for the destruction of Empire City. Little detail: Bertrand is a member of The First Sons, the group responsible for Cole’s powers. Add to that the mutant-like Corrupted, South-African mercenaries with ice-powers, a group of rebels and the mysterious plague from InFamous 1.

If you’re scared that you need to play the first game in order to understand everything, then don’t fear because InFamous 2 gives you a crash course on the events from InFamous relayed to you through the comic like cutscenes. Depending on your choices you start on a higher level with good or evil karma, get some experience points and a longer energymeter. There are some subtle references to InFamous 1 but those aren’t very important and serve only to make fans chuckle. I’d like to see more depth and consequences to your actions, but you’re still playing the wrong game if you’re looking for that.

Still a bit black and white

The choice between good and evil is still very black and white, both in the main storyline as in the optional sidemissions. Both are connected to your ‘counselors’ Nix and Kuo, where Nix stands for chaos and egocentrism and Kuo stands for order and justice. For instance, you’ll need the help of the rebels to attack Bertrand and his militia. To convince the rebels you could use the help of Nix, who dresses up as a militia and attack the rebels so you can show up and be the hero. If you choose Kuo, you’ll see her run off with an ambulance for of medicine. In both cases, the rebels join your side and you choice will only influence your karma and whether you can use Nix’ fire powers of Kuo’s ice powers. The difference in missions is something that is worth playing the game a second time for though, adding to the replayability.

Next to the main and side missions you’ll often encounter events during your travels around town. These events are meant to further influence your karma. For instance you can choose to stop a robbery (good), but you can also harass the police (bad). It’s still easier to do bad things than to put effort in doing the right thing. Especially with some of the later powers it’s pretty hard to be good, when you end up killing a bunch of civilians to get to one bad guy. Either way, the game offers you 6 hours of gameplay if you only complete the main storyline. If you want to play both sides and do all the side missions you can add another 10 or so hours to the first 6.

Variation

The variation in powers is also dependent on your choice between good and evil. The different powers aren’t just linked to progress, but also to karma. This was the same in the first game, but you can also switch between powers. For instance, you can replace the standard lightning bolt by a powerful beam of lightning, but you can also choose to use the full-automatic version to efficiently combat larger groups. You can also choose to replace the Kinetic Pulse, that allows you to throw cars and such, by a shield that converts bullets to energy. They’re useful additions that make it possible to adapt to any situation. Dynamic isn’t it?

The environment is also of some influence to Cole’s powers. Cole was pretty adept at the climbing and jumping from building to building, but in Infamous 2 he’s almost a fully trained parcours expert. Climbing buildings is smoother than ever and the grinding on cables or rails is keeping the pace in your travels. It can sometimes feel a bit clunky, but it’s a system I couldn’t live without. Water is still bad, since water and electricity don’t mix very well, so it’s important to get to dry land.

Enemies aren’t scared of you and bring big weapons. They’re also faster and stronger than in the first game. You’ll feel pretty powerful with your arsenal of powers, but never so powerful that there’s no challenge. Even the amazing Ionic attacks, like a tornado or lightning storm, aren’t a guarantee that you’ll emerge from the fight as a victor.

Though, making yourself as powerful as possible is the main drive to explore the city and do something more than follow the main missions. To make sure your energy will deplete less quick for instance, you can go out and collect Blast Shards that are spread around the world. Next to that, there are about 70 side missions, that are more varied and make you do more than pick up packages or chase after a courrier. You’ll still do something more than once, but not all the time, and you get more experience points to upgrade your powers. Just that is enough motivation to invest time in the side missions.

Finally, InFamous 2 has a mission editor that prolongs to game’s life to infinity. The threshold to start actively building good missions is pretty high. I didn’t even succeed in making simple missions, but luckily you can use existing missions or missions made by others as a template. As you gain more experience in building missions you’ll get the hang of it eventually. And to create order in chaos, there is a possibility to filter the amount of user-generated content you wish to see in the game world.

In summary, I would definitely recommend InFamous 2 to any fan of the first game and sandbox games.

Stay tuned for a playthrough of InFamous 2 by Swidtter.

/Gamecultist