Re: Animated • Justice League “The Enemy Below” – Part 1

jl06I’m back! So, after a summer and early fall featuring GenCon, a trip out to Seattle, moving into a new house, and starting my own publishing imprint, I’m trying to get back into the regular swing of things, including this blog. We’ll see how the numbers look in terms of folks actually reading it, but I’m likely to keep going at least through the first season of Justice League because I’m a bit of a completist. So, without further ado…

Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“The Enemy Below” — Part 1

When the Atlanteans get territorial, they sink a nuclear submarine that enters their sovereign waters, bringing the Justice League rushing to the rescue. Once again, the Javelin is an excellent plot device: having submersible capabilities and breathing masks on-board to get the heroes where the action is.

Note that Superman and Wonder Woman (by definition the strongest heroes around) strain to push the Atlantean warships into each other. This is an example of how Strength scales in the comics. Some versions of Superman juggle planets while the animated series version can catch a falling airliner (as in the initial arc of the Superman animated series) but strains to keep it from crashing.

Continue reading

Re: Animated • Justice League “In Blackest Night” – Part 2

jl05This blog takes a look at episodes from the Justice League animated series from a tabletop roleplaying game perspective, both in terms of game design and game play.

Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“In Blackest Night” — Part 2

While Superman and J’onn investigate the truth of the allegations against Green Lantern, Flash and Hawkgirl keep an eye on the trial proceedings. Flash impulsively offers to defend John against the charges, not realizing that the alien system of jurisprudence makes advocates subject to the same penalty!

Arkis’ power ring aura is enough to protect him from Hawkgirl’s mace. So why do Green Lanterns throw up protective bubbles, if their rings provide an automatic force field? Is there an additional protective benefit? A “layered” defense of some sort? The bubble might represent a kind of primarily defensive action, sacrificing an attack for improved defense (as is the case in many game systems).

Continue reading

Re: Animated • Justice League “In Blackest Night” – Part 1

jl04This blog takes a look at episodes from the Justice League animated series from a tabletop roleplaying game perspective, both in terms of game design and game play.

Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“In Blackest Night” — Part 1

While Jon Stewart is visiting his old neighborhood, some trouble breaks out, with even bigger trouble on its way. Green Lantern easily stops some criminals’ getaway car, lifting it up into the air, and grabbing the escaping criminal and holding him off the ground with his power ring.

When the Manhunters arrive to take Green Lantern into custody, the Justice League confronts them and, of course, a fight breaks out.

Continue reading

Re: Animated • Justice League “Secret Origins” – Part 3

jl03

This blog takes a look at episodes from the Justice League animated series from a tabletop roleplaying game perspective, both in terms of game design and game play.

Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“Secret Origins” – Part 3

Things are looking bad for our heroes and for the Earth: the invader’s mother ship is on its way, Superman and Hawkgirl are captured, and Batman has fallen. As Green Lantern keenly obverses, “This is not good.”

(Note that the Imperium is the “supreme intelligence” controlling the invaders. We see what you did there, Mr. J’onzz…)

The remaining heroes stage a rescue attempt, with Flash distracting the tripod on guard and luring it into stepping on one of the invaders’ own mines, showing he’s learned something from the previous encounter. J’onn can telepathically sense the captives’ whereabouts, at least in general terms.

Continue reading

Re: Animated • Justice League “Secret Origins” – Part 2

jl02This blog takes a look at episodes from the Justice League animated series from a tabletop roleplaying game perspective, both in terms of game design and game play.

Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“Secret Origins” – Part 2

The aliens (disguised as Army soldiers) open fire on the heroes: Batman pushes J’onn out of the way, Superman is hit and blasted back into an overturned vehicle, falling to the ground, stunned. Batman hurls an explosive batarang that scatters several aliens. J’onn spots others coming up from behind. He phases through Batman and then increases his density, taking the blast, which stuns him. Batman knocks the ambushing alien out with a batarang.

We get our first look at J’onn’s density controlling powers: Note the shimmering blue aura when he goes super-dense (a rarely used ability in the series). We also start to see how Batman’s arsenal has been upgraded a bit to allow him to run with the “big dogs” in terms of super-powers. But then, maybe he doesn’t use exploding batarangs a lot in Gotham just because it would be overkill.

Continue reading

Re: Animated • Justice League “Secret Origins” – Part 1

jl01So I had a lot of fun with my Avengers Assembled blog looking at the Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes animated series with an eye towards superhero gaming. Although the second season of Avengers is in full-swing, I decided to “hop the fence” to Marvel’s Distinguished Competition for a bit and look at a slightly older superhero series—and still one of my favorites—the Justice League animated series. In each installment, I’ll take a look at some moments from a game perspective and talk about some things we might learn in terms of game-design, game-mastering, and game-play from it.

Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“Secret Origins” – Part 1

We start off with the mysterious goings-on following the manned mission to Mars and the people posing as technicians at a deep space monitoring station.

Batman traps two of the aliens with a bolo by surprise. The third rushes him. He blocks two blows, a third clips him, then a fourth nails him hard in the stomach. The alien grabs him and hurls him away. Note that the alien doesn’t throw Batman until after stunning him, and that Bats manages to go hand-to-hand with an alien with super-strength (capable of lifting a heavy bank of computer equipment).

Continue reading

Re: Animated • Avengers “A Day Unlike Any Other”

avengers26Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the Avengers episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“A Day Unlike Any Other”

This is it: the season finale, featuring the Avengers versus a vastly empowered Loki with the fate of the Nine Worlds hanging in the balance! Continue reading

Re: Animated • Avengers “The Fall of Asgard”

avengers25Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the Avengers episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“The Fall of Asgard”

The arc of Season One of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes reaches a peak in the next-to-last episode as Loki reveals his master-plan sitting on the throne of Asgard, having claimed the power of All-Father Odin himself! Continue reading

Re: Animated • Avengers “This Hostage Earth”

avengers24

Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the Avengers episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“This Hostage Earth”

It’s the start of the final three episodes of Season One on Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, and the culmination of many of the plot threads woven through this season as the plans of the mysterious patron of the Enchantress and the Masters of Evil come to fruition. Continue reading

Re: Animated • Avengers “The Ultron Imperative”

avengers23Obligatory Spoiler Warning: I will be discussing the events of the Avengers episode in the post. If, for some reason, you’re interested in the show and this blog and have not seen the show, go and do that first. The blog will make much more sense, and you won’t have your enjoyment of the show spoiled. You Have Been Warned.

“The Ultron Imperative”

Ultron is defeated at a heavy cost to the Avengers, but is Ultron’s threat truly ended, and is the Avenger’s teammate Thor truly gone? Doesn’t look like it! Continue reading