With dozens of comic books to choose from, let us show you which are the best coming out this week. Take a look at this list spotlighting our favorite comics that we know are money well-spent and new books that look cool and are backed by some top-tier talent.
Once you check out our picks, head to the comments to let us know what you’ll be buying this week!
Writer Mark Waid | Artist Chris Samnee (Marvel Comics)
The world of Adult Swim’s sociopathic mad scientist Rick Sanchez and his pubescent grandson Morty is full of ludicrous wonders and madcap danger, and Rick and Morty: Virtual Rick-ality gives fans a new way to put themselves right in the middle of it with a fun and funny – though short – Touch-enabled VR experience.
You play the role of one (of the potentially infinite supply of) Clone Mortys, each of which is little more than an expendable floating head and set of hands designed by Rick to help with mundane tasks like doing laundry or repairing his spaceship. The scenarios get more involved as you go, and developer Owlchemy (of Job Simulator fame) does a good job of keeping the pacing up by cycling through several hallmark VR tasks like solving puzzles, environmental exploration, and the occasional shooting gallery.
It’s been a rough few weeks for Facebook. The social media giant has been caught up in a wave of scandals regarding its data collection practices, most notably those that allowed political consultant firm Cambridge Analytica to inappropriately access millions of users’ information. In response, a significant public backlash has risen, with many people deleting their Facebook accounts and leaving the service. Recently, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak announced that he is joining the opposition and will not use the service any longer.
Wozniak explained to USA Today that he has grown uncomfortable with Facebook’s business model and practices. In his words, Facebook is essentially making money on the identities and info of its users without the users seeing any of the proceeds.
“Users provide every detail of their life to Facebook and… Facebook makes a lot of advertising money off this,” he said. “The profits are all based on the user’s info, but the users get none of the profits back.”
Wozniak also stated that Apple’s practices are more palatable, and that the company “makes its money off of good products, not off of you.” When he announced his intent to not use Facebook anymore, he wrote, “I am in the process of leaving Facebook. It’s brought me more negatives than positives. Apple has more secure ways to share things about yourself. I can still deal with old school email and text messages.”
This isn’t the first time that an Apple-affiliated figure has spoken up against Facebook. CEO Tim Cook himself critiqued the social media giant recently, remarking that “I wouldn’t be in the situation… We don’t subscribe to the view that you have to let everybody in that wants to, or if you don’t, you don’t believe in free speech.”
Don’t let the AAA price tag fool you into thinking Extinction is a high-end product. It ain’t, and there’s nothing in the game–not even cutscenes–that come close to approaching the level of quality seen in its lavish, pre-launch cinematic trailer.
Discovering Extinction’s sub-standard quality is frustrating because its premise is very enticing, and there are moments early on when it feels like it’s primed to deliver. As a warrior who’s capable of sprinting up walls, soaring through the air, and channeling sacred energy to tap into supernatural strength, you go toe-to-toe against incredibly tall and powerful giants. Taking them down requires you to lop off limbs and dismantle armor, building up enough energy to deliver a killing blow: a whirlwind slice through the back of their neck. Yes, it’s obviously inspired by Attack on Titan–you even have a whip that can be used to latch onto hook points and pull yourself through the air.
Zipping across a city to reach a faraway objective, with your character effortlessly scaling walls and bouncing off treetops and canopies to avoid touching the ground altogether, can be enjoyable. And the early battles against the first few giants definitely strike a chord, with their impressive scale and intricately textured body parts giving their artificial bodies a dash of realism. It’s all well and good while you’re learning the ropes, but these initial thrills fade fast. Extinction quickly transitions into an incredibly repetitive game that fails to build upon its promising foundation.
The excitement of battling giants–easily the game’s most admirable piece–wanes quickly. Despite the variations that appear over time, their behavior barely deviates from the standards set early on. Most often, you’re merely challenged to target different types of vulnerable objects that bind their armor together, but as you pour points into the upgrade tree to unlock things like extended slow-motion attacks, your character’s abilities scale quickly enough that these added steps are no more than inconvenient speed bumps in practice.
In order to get to the back of a giant’s neck to take it out for good, you will most often need to cut off one of its legs to make it fall to the ground. Alternatively, some giants have bits and pieces that you can latch onto with your whip, though this system is largely too cumbersome to rely upon. It’s very easy for the game to misinterpret its auto targeting and send you flying in the opposite-than-intended direction. Rather than a fun and reliable mainstay, your grapple ability is relegated to Plan-B status.
Nine times out of ten, a hit from a giant means instant death. Your only defensive options are to keep your distance–not always easy, given how close you need to be to cut off their limbs off–or to dodge out of harm’s way before an incoming strike. Giants are so big that these attacks often come without warning, save for small red icons that appear near your character’s head that are easy to miss while scrambling to simultaneously attack and stay alive.
Should you die, you respawn back into the stage with all your progress intact, but being brought back to life in this way sometimes puts you at an unreasonable disadvantage. Each stage is filled with buildings that giants will gradually destroy until interrupted; when the city is totally leveled, you fail the mission. Many times you respawn at the entry point of a location, which forces you to sprint back all the way back to the fight while a giant whittles away at the remaining buildings in your absence. In light of the great potential for one-hit deaths, being sent back to the beginning of the stage doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.
Extinction is made by Iron Galaxy, a studio with experience making fighting games. There are reminders of fighting game mechanics within but any depth hinted at by the presence of super-armor and invincibility frames is shot down when you get a glimpse at the three combo lists. Practically every combo is executed with a single button and is only mixed up depending on when you decide to hold it down or delay the next input. Not that you need to master these skills in the first place. You can’t damage giants with basic attacks, and smaller enemies are too dumb to put up a good fight.
And if you thought your sword, which is capable of slicing a giant’s arm off, would be able to make quick work of an enemy 10 times smaller, you’d be wrong. The same attack you use to slice through bone a meter thick will only kill the most basic type of enemy, leaving others with plenty of health left over to keep fighting.
During missions where your only goal is to rescue citizens, the game arbitrarily changes the rules of engagement, but even then, not consistently. Most stages allow you to activate rescue towers at a normal rate regardless of the number of low-level enemies in the area. But in some rescue missions, suddenly it’s “too dangerous” to attempt to activate a tower with nearby monsters, a proclamation from your partner that causes the charge rate to drop to unreasonably slow levels. But in later instances this is no longer the case, and rescue missions can be completed in two minutes or less as a result. Whether by design or by accident, there’s a fundamental lack of consistency; some stages change the primary objective after you complete the task presented to you at the start, which, given the destructibility of cities, can put you in an unexpectedly frustrating position.
Perhaps the game’s most damning quality is the fact that its story missions are often set in procedurally generated environments. That isn’t bad in theory, but Extinction’s random stages are typically flat and incredibly similar, and they aren’t even in predetermined locations, which completely nullifies any chance of connecting with the story at hand. If giants level a city in one mission, how is it suddenly rebuilt in the next? Your guess is as good as mine. Likewise, the random generation of locations and giants (and their arrangement) can change the difficulty of a particular level from one playthrough to the next. You never quite know if you should press on during a challenging run, or just re-roll and try out a different permutation from scratch.
The story driving you through all of this is told primarily through conversations at the start and the end of a mission. In both cases, the in-game world freezes and static portraits pop up, along with a frustratingly small text box that can only fit two lines of text at a time, even when far more is usually said. While you watch text scroll through this box, dialogue is read aloud at a snail’s pace by decent voice actors trapped behind hackneyed writing. The skip button quickly becomes your best friend.
You do get 2D cutscenes between missions on very rare occasions, but the hand drawn art is rough. The fact that only some cutscenes are properly animated while others are storyboard-grade stop-motion is guaranteed to cause concern. Even the game’s ending, arguably a pivotal moment deserving of some investment in cinematic flair, is of the stop-motion variety, no more impressive than dressed-up placeholder art.
Extinction shoots itself in the foot time and time again. It’s so frustrating to see its good ideas buried under repetitive missions, a forgettable story, and embarrassing production values for its AAA price. Play one hour of it and you’ve basically done a bit of everything it has to offer; then it’s rinse and repeat for as long as you can bear to stick with it. It’s a frail and monotonous game destined for the bargain bin.
The Monday Night Raw after Wrestlemaniais the best non-PPV show of the year. The crowd is always hot, as the show takes place in the same city–and sometimes same venue–as the event the night before. There are always surprise returns, shocking moments, and a few callups from NXT during the evening.
This year’s Raw was no exception, within the first hour of the show, there were two NXT callups and the tag titles being vacated because of one of the wrestler’s hectic schedule. Here’s a quick recap of the biggest moments from the evening.
Raw started off with newly crowned Women’s Champion Nia Jax taking on Mickie James and former champ Alexa Bliss. However, Nia had some help. Her tag partner was none other than former NXT Women’s Champion Ember Moon, who recently lost her title at NXT Takeover: New Orleans to Shayna Baszler.
Braun Strowman and his 11-year-old partner Nicholas relinquished the Raw Tag Team Championships early on in the evening to Kurt Angle. They had to do this because Nicolas had a scheduling conflict: 4th grade. Angle announced later on to former champs The Bar that a tournament would be held starting tonight that would lead to a championship match on April 27 at The Greatest Royal Rumble.
Former NXT star No Way Jose debuted on Raw After Mania, bringing a conga line of people behind him. He quickly won his squash match and danced his way out of the building.
Jeff Hardy returned to action and teamed up with Seth Rollins and Finn Balor to take on The Miz, Bo Dallas, and Curtis Axel. The Miz demanded his rematch clause for the Intercontinental Championship at the Backlash PPV.
Bobby Lashley returned to WWE for the first time in a decade. The former United States Champion spent years at TNA, but his contract ended in January. He squashed Elias in a quick match.
Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn showed up on Raw, asking Kurt Angle for a spot on the show. Angle told them he only has one spot open, so they have to fight for it. The match ended up being a no contest, so neither got the job.
NXT’s former tag team champions The Authors of Pain debuted with Paul Ellering. After beating Rhyno and Heath Slater, they left their manager, Ellering, behind.
During a Roman Reigns segment, Samoa Joe returned to put Reigns in his place, who was complaining about his Wrestlemania loss. Joe mentioned fighting at the upcoming PPV Backlash. Reigns will be fighting Brock Lesnar at The Greatest Royal Rumble for the Universal Championship, again.
Legends of Tomorrow has gotten a lot right in its third season, but it’s never managed to accomplish much with its main villain, Mallus. Unsurprisingly, that became a major sticking point in tonight’s season finale. Despite some great moments along the way, this finale never built up the sense of urgency it needed.
Any remaining hope that Mallus would evolve into more than a generic CG villain with a cool voice was dashed last week with the reveal of his true, fleshly form. Blame the show’s limited budget or a general lack of imagination, but Mallus basically looks like a mid-game boss in a God of War game. And not one of the games. Between his comically bland appearance and his utter lack of motivation beyond the predictable “I’m an all-powerful bad guy who wants to destroy the universe because reasons,” shtick, Mallus really fell flat this season. It almost makes you pine for the days of Vandal Savage.
After completely crushing it in theatres, Marvel’s superhero movie Black Panther is coming soon to the small screen. Marvel has announced that the action film will be available to buy on streaming sites starting May 8, with a Blu-ray/DVD release to follow on May 15.
There will be a number of retailer-exclusive versions available if you’re after the Blu-ray/DVD version. For example, Best Buy will have Steelbook versions, while Target has a “filmmaker edition” featuring commentary from director Ryan Coogler. Walmart, meanwhile, has an edition that comes with trading cards. You can visit Black Panther’s website to see a rundown of all the editions.
While Marvel has yet to fully detail the contents of Black Panther‘s home video version, we expect it to contain bonus features like deleted scenes and gag reels, among other things. Last month, editor Michael Shawver told TheWrap about a scene that didn’t make the theatrical version–thankfully, it’ll be released on Blu-ray/DVD edition.
“Hands down the most painful scene to cut was [one] with Danai Gurira and Daniel Kaluuya,” Shawver said of the actors who played General Okoye and ambassador W’Kabi, respectively. “Those are two powerhouse actors and it was an incredible scene with so many layers to it– boyfriend and girlfriend, it was general and her advisor, all those things. That was painful.”
While it wasn’t publicly talked about on WWE television, most wrestling fans knew that Raw superstar Paige was injured and forced into retirement. Sadly, on the Raw After Mania, she officially announced it and gave thanks to those who helped her along the way.
Back in December, during a house show, Paige was kicked in the back, which caused her neck to snap. Since then, she has not been allowed to wrestle inside a WWE ring. However, she has been working as the leader and manager of the stable Absolution, alongside Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville. She did not partake in the women’s Royal Rumble match nor the Women’s Battle Royal at Wrestlemania. She sat on the sidelines during both events.
On the Raw After Mania, Paige grabbed the mic after an Absolution match and announced she is retiring. “I would like to thank every single female superstar back there today,” she explained. “Be proud to be a part of this division. We have all built this division to be something huge.”
She went on to thank Daniel Bryan, who recently came back from a career-ending injury at Sunday’s Wrestlemania; his return gave her hope. She also thanked Edge, who was also forced into early retirement. She said that Edge showed her there is a life outside of WWE, and she has to go find “something else.” What that means for her fans is unknown at this time.
Paige made it seem like she won’t be returning to WWE programming at all, not even as the manager of Absolution. She debuted four years prior in New Orleans where she won the Diva’s Championship–while still the NXT Women’s Champion. Paige explained that she wanted to retire where she debuted. The crowd thanked her by chanting, “This is your house.”
WWE’s women’s division would not be where it is today without Paige. She was the first female superstar from NXT to help elevate the women’s main roster to where it is today. Because of her contributions, the Diva’s title was retired, women have main evented PPVs, and women have competed in Hell in a Cell, Royal Rumble, and Money in the Bank matches. Thank you, Paige, for helping make WWE’s women’s division what it is today.