Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza October 15, 2014 Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza Carrie Vaughn A Wild Cards story. The Girl in the High Tower October 14, 2014 The Girl in the High Tower Gennifer Albin A Crewel story. Mrs. Sorensen and the Sasquatch October 8, 2014 Mrs. Sorensen and the Sasquatch Kelly Barnhill An unconventional romance. Daughter of Necessity October 1, 2014 Daughter of Necessity Marie Brennan Tell me, O Muse, of that ingenious heroine...
From The Blog
October 14, 2014
A Category Unto Himself: The Works of China Miéville
Jared Shurin
October 10, 2014
Don’t Touch That Dial: Fall 2014 TV
Alex Brown
October 10, 2014
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell Reread: Part 1
Kate Nepveu
October 7, 2014
Shell Shock and Eldritch Horror: “Dagon”
Ruthanna Emrys and Anne M. Pillsworth
October 3, 2014
The Bloody Books of Halloween: William Peter Blatty’s The Exorcist
Will Errickson
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Mon
Apr 28 2014 10:00am

Game of Thrones Episode Review: “Oathkeeper”

Game of Thrones Oathkeeper Brienne

So it looks like last episode’s much-discussed scene between Jaime and Cersei was just the tip of the storytelling iceberg when it came to departures from George R. R. Martin’s books. There was a lot of outright rage at what those changes would do to Jaime’s character long-term in regards to the plot. Which is to say nothing of how That Scene would or could change Cersei emotionally. Well, we didn’t get any real reflection on last week’s event from either sibling which was a disappointment.

Major episode spoilers ahead. Book spoilers are allowed in the comments, so be careful.

[All hail Ser Pounce!]

Thu
Apr 24 2014 4:50pm

Gaming Roundup: Dragon Age: Inquisition Ignites the Skies on October 7

Dragon Age Inquisition

Dragon Age: Inquisition received a new trailer and a release date this week, and from what we’ve seen so far, the game continues to look incredibly promising. In addition to the trailer’s release date announcement and the showcasing of some incredible next-gen graphics, we learned that BioWare is giving their dragon combat system a complete makeover. (Hint: anyone remember Soldier of Fortune II?)

[“Whatever we were before, we are now... the Inquisition.”]

Mon
Apr 21 2014 10:05am

Game of Thrones Episode Review: “Breaker of Chains”

Game of Thrones Breaker of Chains Dany Daenerys

Last week’s Very Special Episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones was a tough act to follow, but “Breaker of Chains” provided only slightly fewer betrayals, Dornish burn victims, and dead kings. Well, actually, the dead king count remained at one. The actor must’ve had a really easy last day of work on set.

What this hour lacked in all of the above, it made up for it with more terrifying cannibals, some very tarnished buried treasure, and another case of non-book readers probably enjoying this episode way more than book-readers.

Episode spoilers after the jump and book spoilers very likely in the comments. Tread carefully.

[Are we sure it’s not called Meth’s Town...]

Thu
Apr 17 2014 5:00pm

Gaming Roundup: PAX East Edition

Pax East 2014

PAX East hit Boston this week, and massive throngs of gamers turned out to explore the industry’s latest offerings, indie and mainstream alike. There was the odd game reveal, a plethora of indie offerings, and updates on some previously announced mainstream titles, including such highly anticipated titles as Evolve, Shinji Makami’s The Evil Within, and Telltale Games’ first foray into the Borderlands universe.

[Read More]

Thu
Apr 17 2014 9:00am

Game of Thrones Episode Analysis: “The Lion and The Rose"

Game of Thrones The Lion and the Rose Joffrey Margaery

The last drop of wine has long since been drunk, the joyousness of Sunday night’s celebrations linger no longer and the ghosts of Monday morning’s regretful headaches have dissipated. And so now there’s a bit of distance to talk about Everything Else that occurred in the second episode of Game of Thrones.

The hunts, the breakups, the visions, the pageantry, and of course the spoilers for show and book.

[Where do whores go?]

Sun
Apr 13 2014 9:58pm

Game of Thrones, Season 4, Episode 2: “The Lion and the Rose”

Game of Thrones: The Lion and the Rose

So. That was Game of Thrones season 4 episode 2 “The Lion and the Rose." We have to talk about this!

Consider this your SPOILER WARNING for the commentary and comments below. Not just for this episode but most likely for the events in the proceeding episodes and Song of Ice and Fire books. INTERNET FIRE AHEAD!

[Reactions to Game of Thrones “The Lion and the Rose”]

Thu
Apr 10 2014 2:30pm

Gaming Roundup: Return to Tamriel in The Elder Scrolls Online

Gamers everywhere have been jonesing for a return to the continent of Tamriel ever since the launch of Skyrim. This week, many a prayer was answered by Bethesda and ZeniMax Online Studios as the new Elder Scrolls-based MMO, The Elder Scrolls Online, launched to much fanfare. How does the new multiplayer adventure stack up to its single player predecessors?

[Those pesky Daedric Princes are always up to no good.]

Sun
Apr 6 2014 10:00pm

Game of Thrones, Season 4, Episode 1: “Two Swords”

The longest winter is finally over and with spring comes the fourth season premiere of HBO’s Game of Thrones. Fans lucky enough to score tickets to a New York-area fan event got to see “Two Swords” a full two weeks before the official air date. Plus some bonus Hodor time. But after the lines and surprise guests, what people really came to see was how such cultural landmark television was going to come back from last year’s infamous Red Wedding.

Major spoilers for the episode after the cut, book spoilers are also fair game in the comments. And some very NSFW quotes. Be warned.

[Why Westeros needs a KFC...]

Thu
Apr 3 2014 3:00pm

Gaming Roundup: The Creator of The Longest Journey Enters Horror Gaming with Draugen

Draugen

Way back in 1999, developer Ragnar Tørnquist and a small Norwegian studio named Funcom released a little point-and-click game called The Longest Journey, which gained repute as one of the best adventure games of all time, driven by one of the most memorable female gaming protagonists ever. In 2012, Tørnquist launched his own independent studio, Red Thread Games, with the intent of revisiting the universe established in The Longest Journey and its sequel, but in between, he and his team found the time and resources to fund Draugen — an upcoming horror mystery game that looks to be part Alan Wake, part Amnesia, and part Gone Home.

[“The sea is calling.”]

Wed
Apr 2 2014 1:00pm

Knights of Badassdom: Verily Dost This Movie Suck

Picture this: San Diego Comic-Con, July 2011. Director Joe Lynch premieres a hilarious trailer for his upcoming LARP-horror comedy Knights of Badassdom starring Game of Thrones’ Tyrion Lannister, True Blood’s Jason Stackhouse, Firefly’s River Tam, Community’s Abed Nadir and Steve Zahn. Steve Zahn pretty much always plays Steve Zahn in fantastic style.

[A Review]

Thu
Mar 27 2014 4:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Plant the Seeds of Revolution in Assassin’s Creed Unity

Developer Ubisoft launched their first trailer for the next Assassin’s Creed game this week, titled Assassin’s Creed Unity. Under development for over three years, Unity is the first AC game designated as next-gen only. Any details beyond the brief teaser shown in the trailer are scarce, but let’s see what we can glean about Ubisoft’s latest offering.

[“Let them eat cake!”]

Fri
Mar 21 2014 9:30am

A Spoiler-Filled Review of Game of Thrones, Season 4, Episode 1: “Two Swords”

The longest winter is finally over and with spring comes the fourth season premiere of HBO’s Game of Thrones. Fans lucky enough to score tickets to a New York-area fan event got to see “Two Swords” a full two weeks before the official air date. Plus some bonus Hodor time. But after the lines and surprise guests, what people really came to see was how such cultural landmark television was going to come back from last year’s infamous Red Wedding.

Major spoilers for the episode after the cut, book spoilers are also fair game in the comments. And some very NSFW quotes. Be warned.

[Why Westeros needs a KFC...]

Thu
Mar 20 2014 3:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Virtual Reality, Finally Within Reach

PS4 virtual reality

The big news coming out of this week’s Game Developers Conference stemmed chiefly from Sony’s official announcement of their entry into the virtual reality ring with their very own VR headset, codenamed Project Morpheus, which they hope will become PS4’s killer app down the road. If early reports are accurate, the new hardware shows a lot of promise, but Sony’s not the only player on the field.

[“This is the key to a new order. This code disk means freedom.”]

Thu
Mar 13 2014 3:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Dragon Age: Inquisition Patrols the Skies This Fall

Dragon Age Inquisition

Fans of BioWare’s Dragon Age franchise have a lot to look forward to later this year as the series returns to gaming screens everywhere via the upcoming Dragon Age: Inquisition. The story-focused medieval fantasy RPG series is, along with Mass Effect, one of BioWare’s flagship franchises, and Inquisition marks the developer’s first foray into next-gen consoles. So what can we expect from BioWare’s latest?

[“This is the world we’re trying to save.”]

Thu
Mar 6 2014 3:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Arkham Knight Puts You In The Driver’s Seat... Of The Batmobile

Batman Arkham Knight

In many ways, developer Rocksteady Studios revolutionized modern superhero video games via their conception of the Batman: Arkham series. Their work spans the first two games of the series (the innovative Arkham Asylum and Arkham City), and presented gamers with a darker Bruce Wayne, tight storylines, memorable villains, and innovative combat/exploration gameplay. This year, Rocksteady will develop what is suspected to be their final Arkham game (though undoubtedly the series will live on through other developers) in Arkham Knight—a game that seems poised to build on the legacy of Asylum and City.

[“In death, I will love you forever...”]

Wed
Mar 5 2014 11:00am

Before They Played the Game of Thrones—Updated for Season 4

HBO’s blockbuster series Game of Thrones is often recognized for its fantastic ensemble cast, which keeps replenishing its ranks every season. Last year, we met the Queen of Thorns, Mance Rayder, some Tullys, some Reeds, and mercenary bad-boy Daario. But there’s plenty of room for more new faces after the Red Wedding.

As the fourth season nears, let’s take a look at some of the actors stepping into Westeros for the first time. Proving that networking at the BBC is great for one’s career, a number of these new actors have already worked with each other and the existing Thrones cast. Get a glimpse of the exciting and sometimes embarrassing pasts of Oberyn Martell, Ellaria Sand, The Queen of Thorn’s oaf of a son, a Wildling or two, and mercenary bad-boy Daario. Again.

[A UC Sunnydale student, a Frost Giant, and Sherlock’s big brother...]

Thu
Feb 27 2014 3:30pm

Gaming Roundup: Kill A Friend, Save The World in Gods Will Be Watching

Gods Will Be Watching

It seems that gaming and moral dilemmas have undergone a unique sort of marriage lately. Most games of yesteryear were content to focus on the simple choices, if any at all—good, bad, you’re the guy with the gun. But recent years have forced gamers to ponder their in-game decisions a little more thoroughly.

Games such as the Mass Effect and Walking Dead series, Heavy Rain, MGS, The Last of Us, and even the Bioshock and GTA franchises have ascribed heavy moral consequences to in-game choices that in some cases directly impact your playthrough. A Norwegian high school is using The Walking Dead games to teach ethics. Falling into this vein of video games is upcoming indie effort Gods Will Be Watching—a dark, difficult point-and-click adventure premised on forcing you to make difficult choices as often as possible.

[How far would you go?]

Thu
Feb 20 2014 3:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Dark Souls II Tries to Tell You It Isn’t About Death, Lies

Dark Souls 2

When developer From Software launched the original Demon’s Souls back in 2009, it became a surprise hit—a dark, beautiful game hailed as a throwback due to its steep difficulty and penchant for killing gamers thousands of times over but keeping them crawling back for more. The game’s sequel, Dark Souls, made death even more prevalent, downright reveling in the player’s gory demise. In an age where challenge in mainstream video games is increasingly rare, From’s Souls franchise is a prominent and noteworthy standout. So what can we expect from the next installment, Dark Souls II?

[This isn’t about death... except it is.]

Thu
Feb 13 2014 5:00pm

Gaming Roundup: The Creators of Left 4 Dead Take an Evolutionary Multiplayer Leap

Evolve

The original Left 4 Dead brought us murderous zombie multiplayer mayhem polished to a sheen and on a scale gamers had never before experienced. The simple premise of a team-based survival horror game jam-packed with so many zombies that even Serious Sam sat up and took notice had a universal and lasting appeal—one that led to an equally successful sequel and whispers of a third game in-development over at Valve. How could Turtle Rock Studios, the creators of Left 4 Dead, possibly follow up their own act? Let’s take a look at Evolve.

[Happy hunting...]

Thu
Feb 6 2014 3:00pm

Gaming Roundup: The Thief Reboot Steps Out Of The Shadows

Thief Reboot

Fifteen years ago, Looking Glass Studios and Ken Levine (a key contributor to such gaming classics as System Shock 2 and the Bioshock franchise) took a risky step by developing and releasing Thief: The Dark Project—an unconventional stealth-based steampunk PC exclusive that used light and sound as core gameplay mechanics to promote non-confrontational combat in an FPS market saturated with spray ’n pray splatterfests. The game was a hit, and its surprise success spawned two sequels—the last of which launched in 2004. The series then went (aptly) dark for nearly a decade... until last year, when Eidos Montreal and Square Enix officially announced a new entry to the franchise that will effectively reboot the series.

[What’s yours is mine...]