Avengers Initiative – Planning Your Marvel Cinematic Universe Movie Marathon

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On Friday, Marvel Studios will release its 10th feature film in the Avengers film franchise – James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy. In light of that, I’m doing a series of articles here where I take a look at the Marvel Cinematic Universe – the One-Shots, TV series, and the films themselves – and breaking down what’s worked and what hasn’t. However, today we’re not reviewing or recapping – we’re talking strategy.

See, anytime I see a movie in a franchise, I have to rewatch the movies that came before it. Before How To Train Your Dragon 2, I rewatch the first; before The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies comes out, I’ll probably rewatch both Hobbit movies, and likely the original Lord of the Rings trilogy as well. I love doing this, because it helps you get in the headspace for the film. Any film in a franchise, by design, builds on the films that came before it.

But this is the TENTH Marvel Studios film, in the ever-expanding Avengers timeline. And for Marvel movies, you can get away with just watching the direct-connection films – the Iron Man films and Avengers before Iron Man 3Thor and Avengers before Thor: The Dark WorldCaptain America: The First Avenger and Avengers before Winter Soldier – and with that in mind, you don’t really HAVE to watch or re-watch any of them before seeing Guardians of the Galaxy.

But where’s the fun in that?

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Why I Game – Tips for the Newbie Dungeon Master

This year is the 40th anniversary of Dungeons and Dragons. So, in celebration of that, and in light of the fact that D&D is releasing a new edition this summer, I’m posting some stories I have of playing Dungeons and Dragons and other role-playing games.

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This month, Wizards of the Coast has begun rolling out the products for the 5th edition of Dungeons and Dragons. As I discussed last week, some of you may now be putting together gaming groups of new players, while others may take on the responsibility of running a game for the first time. While there is not a lot of 5th Edition content for Dungeon Masters yet, in regards to monsters and adventure creation, there is a pre-generated adventure in the Starter Set, which you can either run, or poach for other elements.

With that in mind, I wanted to present those new DMs with a few pieces of advice. More after the jump!

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Because Comics Podcast on the Front Page of the iTunes Store!

The podcast I do with Jay Jones, Because Comics, just hit the front page of the iTunes Store last night!

Because Comics iTunes Podcasts Front Page highlighted

It’s incredibly exciting to see the podcast up there, next to names like Nerdist, Kevin Smith, IGN and the official Marvel podcast, among others! So if you’re on your way down to San Diego Comic Con, and looking for something to listen to, I definitely suggest you check out the Because Comics Podcast – and please leave us a review, and help more people find the show!

You can find more podcasts and other content at PartialArc.comand you can follow us on Twitter at @because_comics

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The Avengers Initiative Progress Report – Marvel’s TV Efforts

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Next week, Marvel Studios will release its 10th feature film in the Avengers film franchise – James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy. In light of that, I’m doing a series of articles here where I take a look at the Marvel Cinematic Universe – the One-Shots, TV series, and the films themselves – and breaking down what’s worked and what hasn’t.

Last week, I reviewed the One-Shot short films included on the Marvel Blu-Ray releases. This week, we’re discussing Marvel’s attempts to branch out to television with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., as well as with the upcoming Agent Carter and the Netflix Defenders shows.

More after the jump.

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Why I Game – Dungeons and Dragons: A Primer for Beginners

This year is the 40th anniversary of Dungeons and Dragons. So, in celebration of that, and in light of the fact that D&D is releasing a new edition this year, I’m posting some stories I have of playing Dungeons and Dragons and other role-playing games.

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(Via Wizards of the Coast)

On Tuesday, Wizards of the Coast kicked off their months-long roll-out of Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition with the release of the Starter Set. Now that it’s out, I’m sure there will be lots of people looking to put together a game for the first time. I’ve written previously about how to recruit players, but what if you just want to send somebody a link and give them everything they need to know about the game in one fell swoop? Wouldn’t that be easier?

Fortunately, when I first started recruiting players in Los Angeles, that’s exactly what I did – I would talk to somebody about the game and my experiences with it, and then if they expressed any interest I would send an email all about the game and how it worked in broad strokes. What follows is an expanded version of that original email – meant to target new players. If you have anybody you’d like to recruit to D&D, feel free to just copy-paste the text below (or just forward the link) and drop it into an email:

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The Avengers Initiative Progress Report – Reviewing the Marvel Studios One-Shots So Far

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In just over 2 weeks, Marvel Studios will release its 10th feature film in the Avengers film franchise – James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy. With that in mind, over the next few weeks I’m going to be taking a look at the Marvel Cinematic Universe – the One-Shots, TV series, and the films themselves – and breaking down what’s worked and what hasn’t.

Back when Captain America 2 came out, I ranked each of the films by which was my favorite (and after Guardians comes out in 2 weeks, I’ll readdress and update that list). Today, I wanted to start off this series with a look at something that has been very hit-and-miss so far: The Marvel Studios One-Shots.

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For those unfamiliar, the One-Shots are short films that started appearing on the Marvel blu-ray releases as far back as Thor. They usually feature a side character from one of the films, and offer some sort of fun little story. Or at least, that’s usually the intention.

Spoilers after the jump.

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