Youtube // Craftworld Aeldari Saim-Hann

Trying out another - How to Paint: Tabletop ready Craftworld Aeldari Saim-Hann. If you enjoy all things Aeldari, check out my playlist here: Adventures with Peps Youtube.

The Aeldari of Saim-Hann are renowned for their speed upon the battlefield, so it's only fitting that I attempt to paint some as quick as possible. This is also perfectly timed with the upcoming release of the new codex and boxset. But will I continue with Iyanden or be tempted by the Wild Riders of Saim-Hann?

Read more about the Saim-Hann on this blog: SAIM-HANN

Discover more of Saim-Hann in this fantastic book Wild Rider

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Book Review 174 // The Vintage (Warhammer Horror Week 2021 #1) by David Annandale


I have been kindly donated the; Warhammer Horror Week 2021 collection by a friend. Made up of five short stories set within the Warhammer universe. This opening tale starts strong with one of my favourite authors taking the lead. So with much excitement, let's jump in.

Title: The Vintage (Warhammer Horror Week 2021 #1)
Author: David Annandale
Commercial Fluff:
An Anasta Malkorion Story. A lowly warrior recounts the tale of his childhood run-in with a vampire who haunts his dreams to this day.

It's a great way to learn more about the Vampire Lord Anasta Malkorion – from a mortal's perspective.

A traumatized Freeguild Soldier stationed in a lonely stronghold remembers how he suffered as a child under the tyranny of Anasta Malkorion, dreading the day she returns to claim the blood she was denied.

Review

David Annandale has done it again. I really enjoyed this 13 page short. Let's get some things straight. One: I am not the biggest fan of Age of Sigmar; this is mainly due to my lack of knowledge of the new setting. Two: This book is designed around the Anasta Malkorion miniature; not sure what came first, the mini or the story.

Overall Annandale, creates a forbidding landscape to set our poor Freeguild regiment in. Having fought alongside the Anvils of Heldenhammer, this regiment is given garrison duty of a keep located in a desolated landscape; the only feature nearby is a creepy rundown castle on the horizon. While the Anvils were there, no one bothered to check out the old castle as it was seemingly unoccupied. This soon changes after they leave, and the horror is revealed!

The lead is an interesting soul, he was raised in the area surrounding this keep, and as a child, he watched as Vampires rampaged crossed the land killing all from the castle on the hill. This is shaped him and led to him wishing to become a Stormcast Warrior in hopes of forgetting his past and moving beyond fear. As his garrison duty starts, he is haunted by dreams of his past and attempts to stay awake and work away his demons. But as the morale of his troops suffers, he decides to rest and discovers his nightmare has only just begun!

Don't want to give too much away. But it is a really great read. Definitely recommend it. Only available on Kindle/epub readers. If you are interested, here is a link to grab a copy off Amazon: https://amzn.to/3JgspM9.

Can't wait to get into the next book. Let me know your thoughts below.

Comic Review 178 // 2000 AD Prog 1333


Look at us! Now at Prog 1333 of March 2003. As you can see in the image, the cover is actually a bit on the dull side. Just the face of Judge Dredd, no honest info at all. Hopefully, the stories inside are more exciting.

We start, as always, with the Judge Dredd story. Judge Dredd vs Aliens: Incubus Part 13. Straight into the action as we join Dredd and Sanchez hanging upside down inside the alien next. It would seem our duo have had the facehugger treatment. During this time, Judge Giant has formed an Extermination team and rides into the Undercity to destroy the nest. Sadly I was left feeling a little disappointed by Mr. Bone's ending; it came too quickly and seemed a sad way to finish him off. I can't see many more issues, so we must see the Queen soon!

Up next Caballistics, Inc. Moving in Part 3. The team has arrived at the basement to rescue Jen, but the only problem is they can't open the door. Inside, Jen has been possessed by a demon and is battling the forces of Malcolm, soon she defeats him, and it would seem the demon inside has complete control of Jen. This is the final part of this section, and I am starting to really enjoy these and hope they will be back soon.

Then we get The V.C.s: M.I.A. I've not really got into this series; it is just too military for me. The stories are straightforward and bare, and the artwork doesn't aid it. In this story, the team rushes to rescue an old friend and discovers he has crashed on an asteroid base overrun with the enemy. Time for a rescue mission (Yawn). Let us move on.

Tales of Telguuth: The Iniquities of Snedron Part 1. We are introduced to a young lady being stalked by a demon named Snedron. Turning to her Wizard father, she discovers that he has cursed her to a life of servitude to this demon in exchange for power. The story ends with the young girl running into the night. I've enjoyed these high fantasy tales, and I think this will be a good one. Will have to wait and see.

Atavar II Part 5. Atavar and the Worldbeaker travel to seek aid from the Wosk, the most ancient of "The Five." As they arrive at the closet colony, they discover the U.O.S. advance forces have already arrived. After a swift space battle, the duo heads to the surface to find the colony abandoned. Just who are the Wosk, and where are they? This story is growing on me but feels like a soap drama. A massive galaxy where everything seems to be happening locally.

And with that story, we are done. As always, Dredd, Caballistics, Inc and Telguuth were great. Atavar was okay, and The V.C.s was meh. I think Caballistics won this week, but let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

Cheers for reading.

Beer Review 181 // Dark & Picante by Beyond the Pale Brewing Company


Wow, I've caught up on my beer review backlog. I've not actually had a whole pint now for about 9 weeks. Meaning, after today's review, I have one beer left to review. This is a strange scenario; I have worked in hospitality since I was 16, and not having a beer looks pretty alien to me. Which I also admit is a strange thing to write out. But as I have become more active on Youtube (click here to visit), other "hobbies" have filled my time, and I love it. What does that mean for this segment? I don't know to be honest; at this time, I have a week to think on it, but most likely comic reviews will appear more often with the odd beer review thrown in.

This week we get to enjoy a favourite of mine, Dark and Picante.

Name: Dark and Picante
Style: Imperial Stout
ABV: 9.3%
Commercial Fluff: Dark & Picante is our 9.3% Imperial Mexican Cake Stout. Full of Cacao, Cinnamon, vanilla & scotch bonnet, this beer has a gentle building heat, you have been warned.

Review

As already mentioned, this is one of my favourite beers out there. They make it two to three times a year, and I also stock up. I try to always have some in the fridge! The pour is a luxurious dark chocolate brown, with a creamy mocha foam topping it. Straight out of the fridge, you get aromas of milk chocolate vanilla, but if you let it warm up, the coffee and Cinnamon appear.

The taste is decadent, smooth, rich chocolate, well-roasted coffee, and sweet vanilla to cut through it. But as you work your way through the glass, the back of the tongue becomes a spicy playground as Cinnamon and scotch bonnet grow. At no point do they take over the flavour profile; instead, they help build it to higher levels. This is such fantastic beer.

I highly recommend buying this if you are from Ontario. You will not be disappointed.

Comic Review 177 // 2000 AD Prog 1332


Straight away, we know we are heading into a scary issue of 2000 A.D. this time. Prog 1332 was released way back in March 2003, and the cover is dominated by a Caballistics, Inc. image. Seems the new house is definitely haunted or cursed!

But before we can discover the truth behind the cover image, we kick off this issue with Judge Dredd vs Aliens: Incubus Part 12. The Mechanismo Units are loose in the Grand Hall of Justice, and it seems to be the tipping point of the battle. With the aid of the robot units, the Judges are finally able to start pushing back against the xenomorph menace. Sadly casualties still rise, and Judge Sanchez is grabbed by the fleeing Xenos and dragged into the Undercity. In his classic heroic ways, Judge Dredd goes off to rescue Sanchez and orders Judge Giant, to seal the portal. The issue finishes with Dredd swarmed by Facehuggers. I feel Dredd is in trouble here. Great start to the issue.

With such an epic sci-fi start, we jump into Caballistics, Inc. Moving In Part 2. The team is finally settling in for sleep in their base of operations. But their bliss is soon disrupted by a scream; seemingly, the house has some extra guests, and they seem to be in the basement. I am definitely enjoying this arc of the Caballistics as I am starting to understand the characters more, and I am intrigued to see what happens next in this haunted house story.

From the slightly slower-paced supernatural story to a fast pace Sci-fi thriller. The V.C.s this week were all guns blazing, full of characteristic sexism and gun porn. Nothing over the top but a good filler piece.

Tales of Telguuth - One Cold Winter Night. We explore the frozen forests of Varthor, where a hunter gets an unusual guest at their fireplace. A classic story of double or maybe triple crossing. Demons vs Humans vs Demons...who is the real evil here? Enjoying the Telguuth stories so far; I wish they could find some better artist, though.

The Final tale for this issue is Atavar II - Part 4. Having been ambushed by World Breaker, the Atavar has to act quickly to survive. Luckily he can best the Champion without causing death. This act of grace proves that Atavar can be trusted, and the beginning of an alliance seems to be forming. It's an okay tale, a bit dull, but at least it is moving the story forwards.

Of course, the standout story is Dredd, closely followed by Caballistics, Inc. I am really enjoying these stories, so expect more reviews in the coming weeks.

Part 8 - Alien Isolation Walkthrough - Oh Hell No!

Part Eight of my Alien Isolation walkthrough videos. The rest of the series plus shorts can be found on Youtube Adventures with Peps.
The goal this time is to not be eaten seven times while I dive deeper into the medical bay of the abandoned space station. I've now reached a point mentally where every noise has me panicking, and I need to know every hiding hole. **Warning** It Gets loud near the end due to alarms going off.

Cheers for watching, and give me a follow.


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Book Review 173 // Scions of the Emperor by Black Library Part 2


Continuing last week's review as we complete Part two of Scions of the Emperor. The Scions of the Emperor is a Horus Heresy Primarch anthology, showcasing a variety of Primarchs and some short stories about them.

Title: Scions of the Emperor (The Horus Heresy: Primarchs #Anthology)

Authors: David Guymer, David Annandale, Guy Haley, Ian St. Martin, Gav Thorpe, Darius Hinks, James Swallow & Chris Wraight.

Description: A fantastic collection of Horus Heresy Primarch short stories. A must-have for all fans of Horus Heresy

Titles in this review:

The Conqueror's Truth by Gav Thorpe

Brought aboard the Nightfall, the remembrancer Ares desires to witness the glory of the Great Crusade. The primarch of the Night Lords, Konrad Curze, grants her request, sending her as a witness to compliance of his Legion first hand, but in so doing reveals a dark and inconvenient truth.

The Sinew of War by Darius Hinks

After having crushed a rebellion in Illyria, a young Roboute Guilliman returns to the capital of Macragge City to be reunited with his father, Konor, only to discover insurrection and unrest running rampant.

The Chamber at the End of Memory by James Swallow

As the Siege of Terra nears, Rogal Dorn uncovers a series of bizarre deaths within the inner walls of the Palace. To find the truth and be faced with no other choice, the primarch must defy the edict of Nikaea and return his Librarius to service, but what he discovers will shake him to his very core.

First Legion by Chris Wraight

Locked amid the Rangdan Xenocides, the Dark Angels of the First Legion are contacted by a mysterious warship under the command of Alpharius. When the stranger begins to ask questions about the campaign, he is summoned to the presence of the Lion himself for judgement. (less)

Buy a  Copy: Amazon CA

Style: Kindle 182 pages

Review

Here we go into the second half of this series, the first half was rather enjoyable, so I was entering this half full of excitement. First, The Conqueror's Truth by Gav Thorpe. This story was a unique take on the Horus Heresy/Crusade war stories as it takes on the adventure of a remembrance who strangely requests to witness the war through the eyes of the Night Lords! Of course, this is a dark story and soon has the remembrancer questioning his life choices. Great start. Then we get a Guilliman story titled The Sinew of War by Darius Hinks. This is a rare story that made me like Guilliman (ha). It showcases the actions that led to him becoming sole regent of Ultmar and did a great job of highlighting the political intrigue of his adopted world, a fascinating story with a nice little twist within it.

We have now reached the most extended two stories of the book at a shocking 20+ pages each. The first is The Chamber at the End of Memory by James Swallow. We join Rogal Dorn while he rebuilds the Imperial Palace into a fortress. As more material is needed, Rogal starts to teardown a zone he was warned away from by the Sigillite. Of course, Rogal ignores him and discovers a chamber guarded by weapons of extreme power. Turns out this door holds the secrets to the 2nd and 11th Legions, but before Dorn can enter, the Sigillite arrives. A lot is hinted in this story; it would seem Guilliman and Dorn were involved in the dissolving of these legions and chose to have their memories altered to allow the sons of those primarchs to exist elsewhere (heavily hinted to be part of the Ultramarines). Dorn also believed that if they survived, they would have sided with Horus, so we have to assume at the very least they were anti-Emperor or, at worst, pawns to the Chaos Gods. As you can tell, this was an exciting story for me, and I rather enjoyed it.

The final story is by Chris Wraight and titled First Legion. It is, of course, about the Dark Angels. During their conflicts with the Rangdan, Lion El'Jonson's forces were depleted. When a mysterious ally comes to help, we discover that the Primarch's having been scheming with each other since the beginning. It is interesting to see the Alpha Legion in action and how they play up to El'Johnson's ego; it is also interesting to hear mention of the Ultramarines numbers growing, as this is definitely linked to the previous story. Finally, it is funny how El'Johnson thought the Warmaster title was either going to him or Guilliman; it seems like Horus was never considered.

A solid book, The Chamber at the End of Memory was the standout tale for this half. Overall I think The Verdict of the Scythe by David Annandale is the ultimate winner. Would love to hear your thoughts on the stories. Which was your favourite?

Audio Review 64 // Alien: The Cold Forge by Alex White


My audible listening schedule has been knocked off course of late. But I did just finish this new to me Alien title. The Cold Forge. So let's not waste time filling up on incinerator fluid and head straight in.

Title: Alien: The Cold Forge (Aliens / Predator / Prometheus)

Author: Alex White

Narrator: Michael Braun

Commercial Fluff: A dramatic new Alien novel, as Weyland-Yutani seeks to recover from the failure of Hadley's Hope and successfully weaponize the Xenomorphs.

With the failure of the Hadley's Hope, Weyland-Yutani has suffered a devastating defeat--the loss of the Aliens. Yet there's a reason the company rose to the top, and they have a redundancy already in place. Remote station RB-323 abruptly becomes their greatest hope for weaponizing the Xenomorph, but there's a spy aboard--someone who doesn't necessarily act in the company's best interests. If discovered, this person may have no choice but to destroy RB-323... and everyone on board. That is if the Xenomorphs don't do the job first.

Review

This new generation of Alien books is killing it. I am really enjoying the series's direction since Prometheus, and this book definitely adds to the series. It reads exactly how I imagine Aliens would be written for a modern-day audience.

The main characters are worthy of remembering and fulfilling the classic archtypes. Then in classic Alienverse style, they are all given the piece of shit character trait and spend too much energy undermining each other rather than attempting to survive. The author does a great job capturing these very human traits that make us scarier than the xenomorphs. The two key characters are focused more on greed and selfish acts than helping others survive. This type of villainy is what I enjoy about the alien franchise and Weyland Yutani in general; it just brings back Burke-style persona.

The story has everything an alien fan needs. We have a secret Weyland Yutani Project; we have Xenomorphs, a ragtag team of expendable crew, synthetics and, of course, facehuggers! It is everything this franchise represents, and I love it.

Highly recommend reading/listening to this story. If you are interested in this, please use this link to purchase off Amazon, as I will get a kickback! Link to Amazon

Beer Review 180 // Theatre of Madness by Flying Monkey


Hey! Welcome to this week's beer review. A long-overdue review of a Flying Monkey Beer. Let's get into it!

Name: Theatre of Madness
Brewery: Flying Monkey
Style: Pumpkin Lager (!?)
ABV: 6%
Hops: Cascade, Pahto
Special Additions: Pumpkin Puree, Cinnamon, Allspice, Nutmeg, Demerara Sugar, Lactose.
Commercial Fluff:
Don't let the alluring levity of a 6% abv deceive you – the interdimensional energy of this brew is anything but mundane. Fresh, inviting winks of malty sweetness to introduce seductive spice and rich pumpkin in a lager realm that traps you in the madness of the whole performance -- and no one escapes. How could a friendly lager become so fiendish? 

Review

The pour on this brew is a dark copper/amber heading towards a brownish shade. The head is off-white, leaning into a warm cream colour. Smells of pumpkin pie spices which shouldn't really surprise anyone. Taste is all spices Cinnamon, Allspice and the classic Nutmeg; the beer is pretty light and well carbonated, making it an okay drink. Unfortunately, the lactose left me with an undesired sweet finish, with a weird tongue texture, and it just lacked pumpkin flavour. This is a fall spice lager. Drop the lactose, and this would be an okay Fall Brew.

Doubt I would repurchase it, but happy to have tried it. Learn more about beer with this: The Oxford Companion to Beer (I get an Amazon kickback)

Comic Review 176 // Star Wars Adventures: The Will of Darth Vader by Tom Taylor

Recently my kids have been getting into the Stars Wars and Marvel franchise, which is excellent. I now have a reason to read some of the comics, and while browsing the library shelves, I discovered this series that I didn't know existed.

Title: Star Wars Adventures: The Will of Darth Vader

Author: Tom Taylor

Art team: Brian Koschak (Penciller), Dan Parsons (Inker), Michael E. Wiggam (Colorist), Michael Heisler (Letterer)

Description: Darth Vader on a mission for the Emperor When the Rebellion's hit-and-run attacks on Imperial cargo ships become too audacious to be ignored, Darth Vader is sent in to find the Rebel base and destroy it. But the base, hidden in the center of a constantly shifting asteroid field, cannot be attacked directly. To reach his target, Vader will have to team up with a recently captured smuggler named Zika - and dealing with an unwilling, wisecracking partner may be more of a trial for the Dark Lord than the actual mission.

Style: Paperback, 80 pages

Publisher: Dark Horse Books

Reviews

Let's get the nerdy crap out of the way. The Will of Darth Vader is set about three years after the battle of Yavin. So basically between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of Jedi. Unsurprisingly the lead is Darth Vader, and we fly around the Annamar system (no idea where that is, by the way).

Here we discover that rebel forces are doing a little too well raiding Empire cargo ships, leading the Emperor to send in Darth Vader to solve the problem personally. This leads to a chance encounter with a smuggler called Luca, who makes Lord Vader question his role within the galaxy and shows us some depth behind the villain.

The story initially reads like an action-packed tale, where you expect Vader to march in and destroy the rebel base before sitting down for lunch. But once Luca appears, the story takes a turn. We seemingly have a character who is physically threatened by Vader and isn't scared to speak his mind and question the system Vader is a part of. This unknown Luca character begins to get Vader questioning just how much free will he has, if any, or is he just a puppet to the Emperor? Unfortunately, this arc was never truly explored, and just as I felt we were getting somewhere, the action takes over once more, and Darth Vader destroys everyone.

Ultimately designed for a teenage-aged audience, I am not surprised by the safe story-telling, but I do wish they had delved deeper into Vader questioning his own role. It is an intriguing take on the character. I want to find more of this series as my kid enjoyed the nighttime retelling of the story.

Interested in adding this to your collection? Use this link to visit Amazon.ca and purchase a copy.

Alien Isolation Walkthrough Part 7 - Seven Deaths.


Part seven of my Alien Isolation walkthrough videos. The rest of the series plus shorts can be found on my Youtube channel Adventures with Peps - Come follow!. This time in part seven, you are treated to a pure horrorfest as I am killed not once, not twice, but six times in total! The seventh kill is not me, hahaha. Playing through this game is hard! The Xenomorph seems to be everywhere, and it took me so long to get past it!

Have a laugh with me and drop me a hello!


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Book Review 172 // Scions of the Emperor by Black Library Part 1

As I read this week's title, I knew that if I was going to do it justice, I would most likely have to do it in two parts. The Scions of the Emperor is a Horus Heresy Primarch anthology, showcasing a variety of Primarchs and some short stories about them. Right, let us get into part one.

Title: Scions of the Emperor (The Horus Heresy: Primarchs #Anthology)

Authors: David Guymer, David Annandale, Guy Haley, Ian St. Martin, Gav Thorpe, Darius Hinks, James Swallow & Chris Wraight.

Description: A fantastic collection of Horus Heresy Primarch short stories. A must-have for all fans of Horus Heresy

Titles in this review:

Canticle by David Guymer

Crash-landed upon a world of perpetual gloom, a young Ferrus Manus is forced to fight for his survival. Upon discovering a strange vessel, he investigates the ship but quickly finds himself battling monstrosities he is ill-prepared for.

The Verdict of the Scythe by David Annandale

Heavily criticized by his brothers over the brutal campaign at Galaspar, Mortarion attempts a new approach during the compliance of Absyrtus. However, discovering treachery at every turn, the Lord of Death must accept an unavoidable truth.

A Game of Opposites by Guy Haley

Jaghatai Khan makes a virtue of being unknowable, yet Warsmith Xyrokles has studied the Warhawk's teachings. Choosing to step into the trap laid for him, the Khan of Khans teaches the traitors just how deadly their ignorance truly is.

Better Angels by Ian St. Martin

Art and war stand fist in glove where it concerns the warriors of the IX Legion. Wending a path through their turbulent history, during the days of the Great Crusade and the Horus Heresy, a Blood Angels neophyte then legionary tries to capture the essence of beauty and art to present to his primarch, Sanguinius.

Buy a  Copy: Amazon CA

Style: Kindle 182 pages

Review

Like all good book reviews, let us start with Canticle by David Guymer. The opening tale sets the pace of an anthology, and I can safely say this is a solid start. We join Ferrus Manus as he is freshly landed on Medusa. Unsure where he is or how he knows what he knows. He explores the wasteland, battling zombie-style creatures to find human life. It is an excellent little world-building exercise. It has also intrigued me enough to explore the back story of the Iron Hands a bit more.

The next title is written by David Annandale, an author I am enjoying more and more as I discover more of his titles. This short is titled The Verdict of the Scythe and involves The Death Guard pre-heresy. It gives us a great insight into Mortarion and how he attempts to appease his brothers, but as he tries to bring a world to compliance, he realizes his way is best and only through extermination can rot be rooted out. Annandale does a fantastic job of creating a world ruled by magic wielders and starts to showcase Mortarion hatred of the Psyker, which will show its head throughout the Horus Heresy. I got a lot of Cthulhu vibes from this tale and really enjoyed it.

A Game of Opposites by Guy Haley. This time we join Jaghatai Khan of the White Scars as he wages war against the Iron Warriors during the Horus Heresy. I have to state that the White Scars are one of the least interesting characters. I find authors lean too far into the Mongolian aspect, and this story is among those. Real shame the Iron warriors are great and make for a good villain.

The final tale for part 1 is Better Angels by Ian St Martin. We join the Blood Angel's and life among this Legion. Sanguinius attempts to teach his sons to become more than just warriors; they need to become artisans to survive the Crusade. Unfortunately, the Heresy hits them hard, and after the Signus Cluster campaign, the Legion is forever changed and is a shadow of its former glory. A genuinely heartbreaking tale to finish on.

Overall positives throughout these opening tales. The winner for me is The Verdict of the Scythe, closely followed by Better Angels. David Annandale is great at creating a narrative I can get behind, and the heartbreaking nature of Ian St Martin's story hits hard. Excited to get into the second half.

Would love to hear your thoughts on these stories. So drop me a comment!

Beer Review 179 // Tasty by Beyond the Pale Brewing Company


I've been struggling to drink a beer of late. It really hasn't interested me; I feel it comes in waves, and like any job/hobby, you suffer burnout. I am in a phase of burnout currently. What does that mean for the blog? Well, not much. You may start seeing fewer posts on the topics, but I have plenty of comics to chat about, so the nerding will continue!

Today's beer is the last IPA I enjoyed at work in 2021 (yes, I work at BTP). So let's get reviewing.

Beer Name: Flash Series - Tasty

Brewery: Beyond The Pale Brewing Company

Style: Pale Ale - New England / Hazy

ABV: 5.5%

Fluff: Tasty is the newest in a series of brews that can trace their lineage back to Yummy and is the latest recipe to come from the brew team's experiments.⁠⁠

Expect big, bold, bright, intense tangerine and hints of pine goodness with a smooth mouthfeel that will please most beer drinkers.

Review

Look at that hazy boi pour. It is thick-looking, crisp white head caps the bright smooth yellow pour. It looks stunning in this glass. The aroma is heavy with citrus, extensive orange notes here on this one. The taste is enormous, with tangerine rind, grapefruit, and a hop burn, making you demand more. A damn delicious beer for sure. I do hope the brewers continue to play with this recipe and show us what else they can do.

Currently, my favourite way to track my new beers: Amazon Link

Comic Review 175 // Alien 3 by William Gibson

Now you are correctly thinking...'Hey, didn't you just do this title?'. Well, yes, I did. If you haven't read the review, head over here. LINK. So why should you read this? That first review is the audible version of the story, while this is the comic. The story remains the same but is told in a different format that we all know can change the lookout of a story. Let's dive in.

Title: William Gibson's Alien 3

Author: William Gibson

Illustrator: Johnnie Christmas & Tamra Bonvillain.

Description: This is the official adaptation of the original screenplay for Alien 3, written by William Gibson, the award-winning science fiction author of the cyberpunk cult classic Neuromancer. You'll see familiar characters and places--but not all is the same in this horrifying Cold War thriller!

After the deadly events of the film Aliens, the spaceship Sulaco carrying the sleeping bodies of Ripley, Hicks, Newt, and Bishop are intercepted by the Union of Progressive Peoples. The U.P.P forces don't expect another deadly passenger that is about to unleash chaos between two governmental titans intent on developing the ultimate cold war weapon of mass destruction.

Collects William Gibson's Alien 3 #1-5.

Review

After completing the audible review, I was amazed to stumble across the title in comic form at my local library, which by the way, has a fantastic selection of comics (any recommendations?). Having enjoyed the audible, I felt it was a safe pick to read one evening and enjoy.

The artwork is rather enjoyable and exciting to stare at for longer than needed. The story does suffer from similar issues to the audible drama, but it seems more pronounced in a comic. The best example is jumping between characters and ships; though easy to pull off with a cutscene, it is hard to pick up on while looking at pretty pictures (it might also just be me not paying enough attention, lol).

Overall it brought characters to life for me, and it kept me entertained for an evening, and that is really all I want from a graphic novel, a little escapism.

Want to read? Don't want to visit the library, grab a copy here: Amazon.ca (not cheap to find these days)



Comic Review 174 // Jaegir: Beasts Within by Gordon Rennie for 2000 AD

I've always been a fan of Rogue Trooper, and hopefully, we will get to that series soon. But when I was visiting my local library, I discovered Jaegir by Gordon Rennie and knew I had to read it. Jaegir is basically a spin-off series of Rogue Trooper and is set on Nordland after the original Rogue series; it follows an officer who served on Nu-Earth and gives us a rare insight into the villains. Without saying too much, more here are the details.

Title: Jaegir: Beasts Within

Author/Illustrators: Gordon Rennie, Simon Coleby, Carl Critchlow

Description:

Atalia Jaegir hunts down war criminals among the worlds controlled by Nordland State Security - until she is recruited for a mission to root out the genetic curse at the heart of the fascist system she serves.

A brand new heroine comes from the Rogue Trooper universe with an incredible new adventure.

While war rages across the galaxy between the Great Nordland Republic and their Souther enemies, Kapiten-Inspector Atalia Jaegir of the Nordland State Security investigates and tracks down war criminals. It's a thankless task - viewed with suspicion and hatred by her own people. Jaegir is no stranger to conflict and betrayal...but her work is interrupted when she is recruited by another arm of the state to hunt down a monster afflicted with a genetic disorder sown into their ranks by the Southers.

Written by Gordon Rennie (Absalom, Judge Dredd) with art by Simon Coleby (The Authority) and Carl Critchlow (Batman/Judge Dredd: The Ultimate Riddle).

Stories include:

• Strigoi

• Circe

• Brothers in Arms

• Tartarus

Style: Paperback, 176 pages

Review

As already mentioned, I am a fan of the Rogue Trooper storyline, so a chance to experience the villains' perspective couldn't be missed out on. Combined with Gordon Rennie steering the story, I knew I would be in for a treat.

The main character is Atalia Jaegir, a captain within the Security Services. She leads a team of elite agents seeking out war criminals within the Nordland forces. As you can imagine, they are pretty unpopular and trusted by few. They have a great set of skill sets between them, be it a poisoner, a tech specialist or a just straight-up killer.

During one mission to find a war criminal, the team gets sucked into the murky waters of Nort military genetic experiments. The Norts ultimately damned themselves and created a gene curse within their ranks to create the perfect soldiers. Years later, the curse can now affect anyone, no matter their rank or family line. Those affected become a killing machine with increased strength, speed and resistance. The only downside is they are completely uncontrollable! We also discover as the story progresses that Atalia Jaegir's family has a link to this curse, and it would seem her father is the leading force behind it.

The artwork is on point and creates a dark, industrial world always on a war footing. The world seems believable and aids in the storytelling. The story itself is very high; Rennie did a great job drawing me in with his characters, his world-building and the over-arcing corruption of the military elite. There is a downside, though; the story ends without a follow-up! I need more Jaegir; where is book two?

I highly recommend this title, so do yourself a favour and buy a copy now!



Equipment Review // Sound - Pixel Buds


Over the festive period of 2021, I was able to get a discount code for a pair of google Pixel Buds A-Series. It was not a big discount but ultimately got me the tax off. I personally am a big fan of Google, as I use both a Pixel 5 Phone and a Pixelbook to blog with (more on them in the future). I also walk a lot and really do not like over-the-head and ear headsets, so a little in-the-ear setup made perfect sense.

The Pixel Buds arrived the day after Christmas, and I made a cheeky little unboxing video for my Youtube channel: Adventures with Peps.


Now that I have lived with them for a month, I felt it was time for a full review. Here are some details on the buds.

Price:
 CAD 139 plus tax - not the most expensive market but definitely a commitment.
Weight: Each Bud is 5.06 grams, making them friendly and light in the ears while the case with buds is 53 grams. Easy to throw in your backpack and forget.
Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0 - Pretty standard.
Additional features: Sweat and Water resistant, but I haven't put it to the test; they have survived the snow of winter.
Sound: 12mm Speaker drive and passive noise reduction.
Charge: 5 hours listening and 2.5 talks. I am getting around those numbers, I am pretty impressed.

Review

The Google Pixel Buds A-Series was, for me, a great purchase. Unboxing it, I knew I made the right choice. I love the design aspect of the charging case, which is clean minimal and reminds me of those silly toys that you had to try and keep alive. The case with buds is light and easy to lose in your backpack (hahaha). While the earbuds themselves come with options for earplug size and are extremely light and comfortable in the ear. I chose Dark Olive for my colour choice and I would describe it more as a greenish grey, I do wish the case had matched the colour of the headset but that is me being picky. I do like the overall matte appearance and they are extremely easy to keep clean. One final nice feature was the magnet, most likely designed to hold in place when wirelessly charging but sticks nicely to metal meaning it won't easily be knocked off the tower unit I charge on. It is also USB-C so connects seamlessly with all my other Google products and hooks up to my fast charger. In all about 15-20 minutes of charging gets me through a day of on and off listening.

Connectivity is easy to set up on all devices. As long as your Bluetooth is on you are good to go. Open the Bluetooth on your device, open the case and boom there it is. Follow the setup and you are good to go. I personally have them set up on three devices, phone, laptop and desktop. With a simple click, I can swap between devices with ease and have had zero issues with connecting. This is great as I can shut my laptop at the end of work and be instantly connected to my phone for m audible walk home. Now as I mentioned I am a google kid, so whether this experience is the same for Samsung or Apple devices I couldn't say.

The final main feature I use is the mics for phone calls and zoom meetings. From what I have experienced they pick up my voice very well. Better than talking directly at the laptop or on the phone, they block surrounding sounds pretty well which is perfect for a busy brewery environment.

Overall I have had a positive experience with these. They are lightweight, comfortable and sound great. The fact that I can quickly switch between devices with a simple mouse click is added bonus. I would recommend to you all for purchase, but I also understand that earbuds is a very personal experience so try out different products, go with what you feel is best and let me know which you prefer.

Book Review 171 // Belisarius Cawl: The Great Work by Guy Haley


Stepping into the current Warhammer 40k timeline with this week's book reading, Belisarius Cawl: The Great Work. This is my first time learning and reading about this infamous character, plus side is I know we have a good author on this title so it should be a good read. Here are the details:

Title: Belisarius Cawl: The Great Work
Author: Guy Haley
Description: Warhammer 40,000 fans rejoice - Belisarius Cawl has his own novel! Join him on his journey to the abandoned world of Sotha which hides a long-buried secret… and ancient evil.

Belisarius Cawl, Archmagos Dominus of the Adeptus Mechanicus is the most brilliant mind alive. For 10,000 years he has furthered the cause of mankind, working under the aegis of the Emperor and Lord Commander Roboute Guilliman to prevent the inexorable march of the alien and the traitor. Many call him a heretic, but all must recognize the magnitude of his achievements, for who else but he was entrusted to create a new generation of Space Marines? Who else but the great Belisarius Cawl could even accomplish such a task?
Now, in the wake of the Great Rift and the Indomitus Crusade, his ambitions bring him to the long-dead world of Sotha, once home to the Scythes of the Emperor, now a barren wasteland devoured by the vile Tyranids. Accompanied by Tetrarch Felix and his elite warriors, it is here that Cawl believes the lynchpin of his mysterious Great Work lies. But uncovering it is a near-impossible task, one in which the Archmagos must overcome an ancient evil that threatens to extinguish the last hope of humanity.

Format: Kindle, 416 pages

Review

Okay, I enjoyed this. I really wasn't sure going into this but I've changed my mind. This was an interesting read. Like most titles, it has pros and cons, but the pros definitely won.

The main plot is based around Belisarius Cawl and his attempt to "help" the Scythes of the Emperor. Of course there is other motives from all parties to be involved in this under taking that are slowly revealed throughout the story. The biggest drawback initially was the three stories happening at once aspect, which by the end of the book worked but early on it was very jarring to dive back and forth. The three story arcs are:

1) The origin story of Cawl.
2) The awakening of the Pharos Beacon and the Necrons.
3) The deep dark secret of the Scythes and the Tyranids.

The origin tale of Cawl is interesting. We get to see how he came into being and how he was able to get the primaris information from the Emperor. Love how he was pretty causal around the Big E but at the same in awe. This aspect of the book was very interesting to read from a Lore Point and the way it was handled ultimately made sense in the story. This section leads to Cawl's desire to activate the Pharos Beacon as he seeks out a way to manipulate the Blackstone, causing the mountain to wake and activating a Necron base. Turns out this Beacon was also a prison of sorts for some of the C'tan who need someone like Cawl to release them. Then finally is the Scythes story, this is their homeworld and early on we discover that it has been destroyed by Hive Fleet Kraken and ultimately would have ended the Chapter without the aid of Cawl and the Primaris project. But as the story continues we discover the Sycthes are keeping secrets. I don't want to spoil it too much, but keep an eye on the box. I actually really enjoyed this arc of the story and wish we got more of it, instead it is more side quest of the book.

As you can properly tell, I ultimately enjoyed the story, started a bit rough with the jumping in and out of story arcs, but once a rhythm was found it became highly enjoyable and witnessing the end of the Scythes firstborn was an honour indeed. Highly recommend grabbing a copy to enjoy.

Comic Review 173 // Alien: Rescue by Brian Wood


Following on from Aliens: Resistance comes Aliens: Rescue and continues the story of Amanda Ripley, Zula Hendricks and Alec Brand. Hopefully, we have a better account than Resistance. Here are the details

Title: Aliens: Rescue (Alien: Isolation #4)

Author: Brian Wood

Illustrations: Kieran McKeown

Description: Colonial Marines are the elite military fighters of the future, battling alien threats across the galaxy.

One hero has the chance to fight alongside Amanda Ripley and Zula Hendricks, who saved his life from Xenomorphs so long ago.

Following Aliens: Resistance, Alec Brand, the colonist rescued by Amanda Ripley and Zula Hendricks, has grown up into an elite Colonial Marine. A secret mission brings him back to the Alien-infested moon where he was rescued...and face to face with the past.

Brian Wood (Massive, Aliens: Defiance) joins artist Kieran McKeown (Halo: Lone Wolf) for an action-packed battle against a dangerous alien threat.

Collects Aliens: Rescue #1-#4.

Page Count: 96 pages

Review

The good news is this is better than Resistance! Following on the adventure of the disappointment that was Resistance comes Rescue. Rescue is set five years after the last comic and continues Amanda Ripley's and Zula Hendrick's attempt to bring down the mega-corporation Weyland Yutani. I can't explain how much better this story is compared to Resistance; it has a good pace, a clear storyline and characters that seem natural and not two-dimensional. 

Though an improvement is still on the weaker side of comics, the artwork seems weak and a bit lazy, and the story ending seems rushed and forced in a way that can close off the story. Seems like maybe the series ended sooner than planned?

As mentioned definitely a step up on the last comic, but still with too many flaws. If you are a fan of Aliens and must read everything, go ahead. If you are more casual with the franchise, give it a skip.

Beer Review 178 // Pale Ale Project by Beyond the Pale


Many of my regular readers would know by now I am drinking a lot closer to home. I am actually buying and consuming a lot of my works beers. Why is this? Well, the main reason is the ease of purchase. With COVID still an issue in Ontario, the thought of travelling around visiting breweries doesn't feel right yet. So being able to grab and beer and go from work and blog is so easy. This week I continue the trend and crack open the Pale Ale Project. Let's go!

Beer Name: Pale Ale Project
Style: APA - American Pale Ale
ABV: 4.9%
Description: To create our most popular Pale Ale, our brew team tried eight different combinations during a year of experimenting. The couple chose Centennial, Amarillo and Simcoe as the winning combo through trial and error. Producing a bright, refreshing and flavoursome all-season session ale.

Link: Buy Now

Review

As you can see from the photo, the beer pours a traditional straw yellow. It is pretty clear with a gentle haze going through the brew, and the pour is topped by a bright white healthy foam. The aroma is bright and citrus fresh, with lots of lemons. You get the zing of lemony hops, a slight floral note, and some grapefruit pithiness on the sip, which creates a mouthwatering freshness. This is an easy drinker packing a lot of flavours into every sip and with enough bitterness, making you want more. Sneaking in at under 5%, I found myself reaching for a second can. Highly recommend picking up a couple.

Time to start thinking of the summer; I think I should treat myself to one of these Yeti 16oz Vacuum containers: Amazon Link anyone bought one? What are they like?

Comic Review 172 // 2000 AD Prog 1331


Here we go with another 2000 A.D. Prog. We are exploring Prog 1331, which came out on March 12th, 2003. The cover is a strange one featuring, at least to me, an unknown bearded man with glowing eyes. The catchline states, "The Atavar is Back from the Dead." So at least I know it is from the Dan Abnett Sci-fi strip, then across the top, we have a Caballistics story teased. Let us dive in.

Judge Dredd vs Aliens: Incubus Part 11: The halls of Justice are under siege with the Xenomorphs pouring in through the underhive. Even with the skills of the Verminators, the Judges are being pushed back. Judge Giant activates an extreme measure with a rising body count and releases the Mechanismo units.

Great opener. Good to see the Judges struggling against the Xenomorphs and not just gunning down a non-threatening alien. Also, I love the Mechanismo units; they are so cool!


Caballistics Inc. Moving in Part 1: Following on from the earlier story from 2003, we get to catch up with the Caballistics team as they move into Exham Priory. Unfortunately, it turns out that the new base of operation was once the home of Malcolm Critchley, a Magus of a Cult wiped out back in 1934. The final panel hints that something sinister is stirring in the house.

Solid start to a new series. I am interested in seeing how the creative team develops it; I am enjoying an occult story arc in the progs.

The V.C.s Bystander Part 2: We kind of meet a new race in this episode known as the Polity, a collective of advanced alien races, who could stop the war between the Humans and the Geeks but instead hide behind ethics to not get involved.

Bit of a slow-burning story. Intrigues to see where it goes.

Tales of Telguuth - Pagrok the Infallible Part 2:
 Continuing on Pagrok's adventures to rescue a Damsel and make himself stupidly rich in the process. A classic ending to a fable, the main character Pagrok gets his wealth and gold, just not the way he had hoped for.

Rather enjoyable two-parter, I might seek out the graphic to review.

Atavar II Part 3: The title story! Still don't fully understand this series. But the Atavar is a cloned human from our extinct race designed to help fight the UOS, who turns out to be created by humans. It would seem he has decided to help the alliance and is travelling back to the war fleet when he is ambushed by World Breaker, a gigantic ship!

No idea what the hell is happening, but I am enjoying it, hahaha.

Overall a hugely enjoyable issue. Gimme more!!

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Book Review 205 // The Lords of Silence by Chris Wraight

I've been attempting to enjoy the Horus Heresy via the audible app, thus freeing up my time to read other novels. But it seems even my H...