Jim Henson’s Muppets have long held a special place in my families heart. As a child, my parents would place us in front of the TV, slide a Muppet movie into the VCR and watch as we would laugh and laugh at Henson’s amazing imagination come to life. As a result, Kermit, Fozzie, Gonzo, Animal and the gang became great friends that we’ve tuned in to watch over and over again through the years (in fact, to this day Christmas just isn’t quite complete if we don’t watch the old Muppet Christmas on a old beat up VHS tape each year).
So, it was with some enthusiasm that I heard that the Muppets would be starring in comics, licensed from Disney, by Boom! Studios and that Mouse Guard creator David Peterson would be providing alternate covers for the 4-part comic series, Muppet Robin Hood:
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I’ve already got my hands wound tightly around two Strategy RPG’s at the moment, but come April ’09 I’ll likely have to make it three as Valkyrie Profile: Covenant of the Plume (DS) finally hits store shelves. If you’ve been following this blog for any length of time you know that I love me some SRPG’s so I’m really looking forward to seeing how this winning series integrates strategic game play into its already unique action battle mechanic. Add Lenneth, the rest of VP’s time tested cast (not to mention the newcomers), and all the Norse elements and this is shaping up to be one of the best games of the year as far as I’m concerned. That, and that I can take it with me on the DS only sweetens the deal.
Here’s the solicitation:
Destiny by sinner sought. Tragedy by power wrought. The origins of a cult classic are revealed in Valkyrie Profile: Covenant of the Plume, the third entry in the critically acclaimed Valkyrie Profile series. Development studio tri-Ace returns to craft a gameplay experience that boasts a captivating storyline with ties to Norse mythology and a familiar yet refreshing battle system enhanced with deeper strategic elements.
Also, be sure to check out Square-Enix’ shiny new Valkyrie Profile: Covenant of the Plume page for some nifty wallpapers, music, character information and more.
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Saturday morning I started the day early, trying to get to the bank before 8:00 a.m. so that I could be on the road half and hour later for the 3-hour trip to Austin from Forth Worth, TX. I didn’t have any cash on me so I wanted to make a small withdrawal in order to pick up a few extra goodies from Stan at the Staple! Independent Media Expo should he happen to have any on hand. Turns out that the Credit Union drive-thru doesn’t exactly open early on weekends — so I headed South on 1-35 with no cash to my name, a little ticked at myself. Not making it to the Credit Union on Friday, or earlier, was definitely a huge mistake on my part. So I went with no cash knowing that I’d be leaving relatively empty handed — but I wasn’t ever really going for the merchandise anyway so I really wasn’t too worked up about it. My reason for going was to meet Usagi’s creator, Mr. Stan Sakai, after years of admiring
his work and enjoying Usagi’s stories so much, so it was great to finally be able to shake his hand and introduce myself once I located his booth. Knowing Stan was a food connoisseur of sorts I had promised to bring some of West, TX’s world famous colaches as a small way of saying “thanks” for all that he has done for Usagi fans over the years, though I think he might have felt a little awkward actually getting a dozen pastries, etc. when his wife wasn’t there to help him enjoy them…
Anyhow, Stan was busy with sketches, etc. so I nervously introduced myself when I thought it was appropriate, and returned a few minutes later when he wasn’t as busy with my beautiful girlfriend at my side so that she could meet him (her being Japanese I thought they might enjoy talking for a moment) and so I could get a few things signed. He graciously did a quick sketch for me in each of the 3 Usagi collections that I had brought (UY Books 1, 14 & 18) and handed me one of the 25th Anniversary posters as a member of the Dojo, so that was all really cool. I was surprised at how he automatically started drawing in the books, and really appreciate the time he took to do that. I asked him about his upcoming project Yokai and he, my girlfriend and I briefly discussed Japan’s interesting monsters for a few minutes — including a little umbrella monster that hops around doing very little harm (you learn something new everyday). I didn’t want to take too much of his time up, and I didn’t have any cash to spend on those great sketchbooks, or a commission so I thanked him for his time with the hope that he’d enjoy the pastries. We had other things to do in Austin, and North in Salado, so I actually left the convention shortly after but I was awfully glad to have finally been able to meet the man behind his long earred creation and I appreciate the time he took to talk with us (and apologize for my nervousness) while we were there. I hope to be able to meet him again someday down the road and while I didn’t run into any other Dojo members while I was there, I hope they enjoyed the Q&A session later that day and that they came away with some cool stuff, and a few great memories to boot.
I know I did.
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