If you have been to any sort of convention or expo, then you have probably had some interaction with a volunteer at any given time. In fact, I would say that without the help of volunteers, then some of the events, especially an event like UK Games Expo would be a lot smaller and less awesome. Volunteering is a great way to attend an event for a low cost, as well as a way to give back to your fandoms. You can use that as an opportunity to get to see a new town, city or even country, if that is part of the opportunity. You’ll have to pay for your own travel to get there (sometimes your own accommodation too) but after that, there is usually very little to spend for.
After a few months of waiting, I went to see the Festival of The Spoken Nerd show in Wells last week. I had no idea what to expect from the show but was curious to find out and took four fellow geeks along with me. It was a busy crowd from a very varied age range, that I think spanned from 12 to 50+ and I think it certainly had something for everyone.
Sessions of D&D are usually not short. Any session that I have been to has ranged between 2-4 hours in general, so I was intrigued to go and see a specifically designed 90 minute D&D base show at The Improv Theatre in Bristol. I was very interested to see how this would work and being a fan of things like Critical Role, and the Acquisitions Incorporated sessions I had no idea how they would make it work and was very pleased with the result.
I like comics. I take an unusual approach compared to many enthusiasts, seizing upon every little detail of a Marvel movie and studying it in depth in an effort to uncover some easter-egg a layman might not observe, occasionally picking up a volume of something that catches my eye, including a few non-super titles like Transmetropolitan or Beyond Wonderland. The art, the complex and interwoven stories picked up by dozens of writers, each adding their own unique interpretation.
The morning before the Shrewsbury Meet I had the chance to sit down in the Shrewsbury Coffeehouse with Christian Ward, comic book artist for Marvel and Image amongst others. Christian’s unusual style and colour palette sets him apart amongst the more traditionally styled comic artists, and his unique talent has led him to a unique project.
Black Bolt, leader and King of the Inhumans is receiving his first ever solo storyline, unattached to his part-alien part-god family, and Christian has been tasked with bringing the man who dare not speak to life on page. In addition we’ll be introduced to some characters entirely new to the Marvel Universe, and he got the first shot at immortalising their image. The first issue of this unique saga is released tomorrow at comic book shops everywhere, and this is what we discussed:
Much credit to Tim for editing out the sounds of the Coffehouse going on behind us, rendering our conversation to video, and finding Throne of the Cresent Moon, well done that man. And of course thanks Christian for taking the time to chat with me. Check out the amazing people he discussed here:
If you’re in Shrewsbury on Friday then you can get your copy of Black Bolt signed by the artist’s own fair hand, information on the signing event hosted by Infinity and Beyond can be found here, but so long as your within easy reach of a comic-book shop you can grab your copy of issue 1 tomorrow (Wednesday, 3/5/17) following the Inhuman King’s first solo adventure.
So here we are again catching up with PlayExpo. This time we are talking Sumo Digital who are mostly a UK based development team with an office in Nottingham and Sheffield. I managed to get some time to chat to Seb Liese the designer of their new game who originally was a biology teacher in Holland. He was first noticed by Sumo Digital because he was one of the top rated level designers for Little Big Planet, he has now been working there for four years. At the end of 2015 Seb won a 24 hour internal Game Jam with his ‘snake physics’ based tech demo and was given a team to work with to translate this into a fully fledged game. The game itself is physics based action puzzle platformer called Snake Pass and is due for release around the first quarter of 2017. So let’s go through my chat with the designer.
While I was at Play Expo I mentioned that I was able to talk to Duncan and Becca from Akies Games. Their match three style puzzle game called Aenigma OS is currently only available for Wii-U but is at a low price of £4.99 ($6.99 USD, €6.49 EUR). Duncan e-mailed me this week to mention that there might actually be a PC version on the cards as there was a lot of call for it at the show (Mac & Linux too please, Duncan!)
Hello fellow geeks,
We like to deliver on our promises and last week we mentioned that there will be an interview with the developer of the game Hacknet and this is it. GeekOut would like to thank Matt from the bottom of our hearts for taking the time to answer our questions and we wish him well on the continued development of the game and we look forward to whatever he decides to develop next.
Ever felt like the cold grasp of death was something that could only be delivered by those whom were already dead? Then you’re probably going to like this wonderful web comic by the name of Vigor Mortis. Join Timlah as we speak to Ella and Jennie, the writer and artist, as well as a review!
Look at this, the earliest time we’ve ever released a GeekOut article: at 1 minute past midnight. We’re in the New Year here in the UK! Now that 2016 is upon us, why not look back at some of the articles Joel and I consider to be our personal favourites and best of the past year.
Now that 2015 is behind us, I think for me I am proudest of GeekOut the meetup group. We’ve built a fantastic, all-inclusive community of like-minded geeks. We’re able to say without any shadow of a doubt that we’ve built from what we started the year with and made it turn into an event that truly feels special. From a simple recurring meetup joke that’s now turned into our official mascot, Gordon the GeekOut Goat (more on that in the first quarter of 2016), to the humongous Christmas meetup we had last month, we can tell there’s a shift in perception about our group.
We’re serious, we’re here and here are some of my favourite articles about the Meetup events:
However, moving away from the meetup, I’m also proud of some of the articles and galleries I ran this year. I’m keen to bring you geek culture in all of its glory throughout the year, I’m also proud of the advances we’ve made in our social platform:
I’ve learned a lot this year, discovered a great deal about my personal writing style, mostly by coming down from my lectern and climbing up on a soapbox. Getting a little into film review and critique has raised my analytical skills, and generally discussing my experiences as an overt and perhaps excessively geeky person in day to day life have caused me to be far more analytical of myself.
This was also an incredible year of accomplishments for me, two interviews with some very important people; Gerry Anderson’s son Jamie, who’s in the process of restoring the ultramarionation style his father made famous, and Professor Elemental, who can proudly proclaim – at the very least – an major part in the founding of a genre. I also finally had a stab at NaNoWriMo, granted it failed but I’ll be trying again next year, and this time I’ll be doing it ~snigger~ write.
- Firestorm Update – An Interview With Jamie Anderson
- Prologue – Inspiration
- Interview – Professor Elemental
All in all, this has been the third year of dramatic change for me, and almost all of it positive. This year coming will also see my second anniversary with GeekOut, and having helped take this show from strength to strength has been an incredible experience that piles positivity on top of positivity. Here’s to a fourth year of growth.
2015 was a highly successful year for us both: We were considered worthy to be press pass holders for EGX Rezzed and Kitacon[link]. We took full advantage of this: For Rezzed, we held interviews with developers and hosted the audio over on Soundcloud. Eventually, I’d like to get this ported over to YouTube.
Our biggest interview yet was with Professor Elemental and both Joel and I worked tirelessly on this. Joel came up with some truly fun and unique questions for the quirky professor and I managed to turn him into a prime minister. Kind of. Make sure to have a listen to Joels’ interview with the professor and feel free to laugh with the dreadful animation I provided!
We’re here in 2016 and we’re a duo of the proudest geeks you’ve ever met, so brace yourself as we’re coming to make this another successful year. What’s your plans for 2016? Let us know in the comments below, or join in the conversation over on Facebook and Twitter. Articles will resume at the normal time (9am) tomorrow, so in the meantime have a Happy New Years’ Day!
Now I’m no rap fan, but there are two great exceptions to that particular preference. The first has to be Epic Rap Battles of History, as long time readers will know we are big fans here at GeekOut, and while I know that plenty of rap artists have clever lyrics, it’s rare to find any quite so educational. I guess it’s just that rap doesn’t speak to me culturally.
Of course if you’re looking for a rapper who taps the kind of culture I associate with, well then cast thy gaze at yonder pith-helmeted adventurer.
Brit, steampunk airship pilot, friend to geeks of all manners, tea enthusiast, former English teacher, and rather good rapper to boot, Professor Elemental occupies a niche he sculpted for himself in the music industry. Between himself and arch nemesis Mr. B the Gentleman Rhymer they have cornered the market on upper-class lyric slinging that is more commonly referred to as Chap-Hop, a form that’s starting to spread amongst apologetic Englishmen with a love of song.
Elemental (or Paul Alborough without the helmet) has spread his brand to comics, toys, games, a plethora of other media works, and all in the name of a jolly good time. He’s a firm favourite on the convention scene, in particular featuring regularly on the stage at Kitacon, and milling around the crowds off stage too. It was here that I took a liking to his style and approached him for an interview, and despite his enthusiasm time and opportunity repeatedly got in the way until at long last we managed to squeeze in a few minutes on Skype for a quick geeky Q&A.
Here’s what we talked about…
Check out Ape Quest here, the story of the search for the Prof’s loyal orangutan butler Geoffrey through space and time, or have a gander at his other works here. Keep your eyes on the guest list at Kitacon, and on the billboard at your local venues.
And as always, a huge thanks to Professor Elemental for his time, and his unflappable cheer.