The Elder Thoughts

RPGs, miniatures, books and other rants

Comic Book Review: Warhammer 40000: Dawn Of War

Warhammer 40k: Dawn of War comic book cover

Warhammer 40k: Dawn of War is not only a series of videogames but also a comic book that I recently read, but also a 4-issues comic that ties in between the second and third installment of the mentioned games.

New to the scene Sergeant Olivarr and returning from the previous Dawn of war games, sergeant Tarkus, a fan favourite. Tasked with locating their chapter master, Gabriel Angelos, after he goes missing from a battle against the xenos threat of the ork greenskins. But with the Eldar also on the scene its not going to be easy as they make their journey to him, paved in bolter shell and blood.

Set after the events of Dawn of War 2, we learn that Gabriel Angelos has dissapeared while fighting with orks, and two sargeants are searching for him, Tarkus and Olivarr (a new character created for the comics). While trying to find him, problems will arise not only with the greenskins but also with the Eldar, setting everything up (more or less) for the third videogame. Other characters from the game series appear, and and there are glimpses of some of the units that the latest DoW features, but not as much as the cover images would imply.

The drawing and coloring is great, in all issues except for the third one, which is more plain and simpler than the others. There is action but the plot is quite simple and without any impressive twists.

Not a bad comic but neither impressive, even if you fancy the videogames it really doesn't adds much.

Book Review: The Art of Dead Space

The Art of Dead Space book cover

I love the first two Dead Space videogames, and I've finished the main trilogy plus another one released on iOS. This art book contains concept art, drawings and lore about the 3 main titles and bits from two small comic book series.

Essentially, if you liked the games you will enjoy the pictures and the companion text. It tells many small details about most topics, from the whys and hows of the weapons to the suit designs, the different enemies, and of course the markers. It does contain huge spoilers so you should be careful with that, but after beating the games, it is a must read to expand the lore.

To complain about something, that there seems to be more content about the third game than the first two, and at least for me those are the best titles. I'd love to have seen even more about the Ishimura ship... but even with that it is worth it for fans.

Art Book Review: Inquis Exterminatus

Inquis Exterminatus book cover

Inquis Exterminatus is an art book compiled by John Blanche for The Black Library, and first published in 2000 (my edition is from 2011) and which, at the time of writing this blog post, is sadly out of print. It contains around 140 pages full of artwork from all way back to Rogue Trader until late nineties, and from many artists, not only John. Also there are some companion texts and "motivational sentences", always related with the pictures they appear along to.

The contents are separated by armies/factions, containing one for imperials and heretics, another for chaos space marines/traitor legions, and then xenos races. The last pages contain some beautiful sketches that I wish there were more of them.

It is a nice art book, and one I'll keep, but my only and big complain is that some of the pictures are in black & white despite the original being in color. They are still great but having seen the colored ones it is a pity that the book contains the B&W alternative. There are some color drawings so I don't get the reason why all that should are colored. But even with that is a great compilation.

Comic Book Review: The Eternaut

The Eternaut comic book cover

Since I was a child, I like sci-fi themes of aliens invading Earth and the always initially losing human side struggling to survive and counter-attack. V, War of the Worlds, Mars Attacks... So I decided to give a try and bought The Eternaut as a compilation (the comic strips originally appeared on newspapers in 1957).

Set in Buenos Aires, a family and their friends are playing at the house when a sudden snow storm beings, apparently killing people upon touching any snowflake. They survive, forge some improvised sealed suits and begin exploring for answers as to what happened. Soon they will find that the snow was just the first strike of an alien force that seems to want to erase human life from the planet.

I love not reading/watching spoilers so I'll stop there the plot description, but it got me intrigued until the end. The drawing is fine, black and white but detailed and evocative of the story being told, and the comic keeps the orignal small 3-4 pages weekly strips so there are lots of cliffhangers to keep you eager of reading what happens next. The plot is quite imaginative for the times it was written and, despite the obvious political underlaying message, overall is an enjoyable science fiction tale.

Note: Preparing this review I learned that there is an official sequel and a remake (with more violence and political content), I might try to get a hold of the sequel. Further follow ups seem to be of lesser quality and not from the original author (who sadly dissapeared).

Book Review: Angels of Caliban

Angels of Caliban

I continue my reading of Horus Heresy series in disorder, but focusing mainly on Dark Angels-themed books (being my favourite chapter). My latest read, Angels of Caliban, has been a pleasant surprise.

In this volume we get to learn with lots of details mostly two plot lines: How began Caliban conversion to chaos, and how (and why) the Imperium Secundus and Triumvirate dissapeared. On one side, new details about Caliban hidden forces, about the origins of The Order, about how Luther slowly turns to rebellion after being banished to Caliban by the Lion. On the other, how the Triumvirate worked, with Sanguinius and Guilliman and the Lion who goes hunting for Curze with drastic measures. We also get to see more of the character of the Dark Angels primarch and some decisions that might have consequences...

There are also nice links with previous books, like the Tchulcha device the angels have, but also with future events, like mentioning Luther befriends Typhon (who is already tainted by Nurgle but keeps it in secret), of the old formations the chapter had (especially the Dreadwing), and we get to learn some "motivations" we can say of some of the will-be first Fallen Angels.

As a Dark Angels fan, can't but recommend reading it. There are some chapters who feel a bit long (e.g. a certain Luther speech...) but overall quite enjoyable.

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