Sunday, December 31, 2023

The Bad Things About Spider-Man 2


I don’t need to tell you the good things bout Marve’s Spider-Man 2 on the PS5. It’s Nw Year’s Eve 2023, the game’s been out for over two months, and plenty of people have talked about all the good things in it. I mean, the game is like 98% good things! So, after 100%ing it (not Platniuming, I don’t have that kind of free time), here’s where I think it missed.

1: The Triangle Activate Button.

One of the things I like about Insomniac games is that they’re always easy to play. Insomniac is great at interpreting player intent for the most part and doing what you want to do in most situations where you indicate you want to do them. Which is why the activate button behavior os so weird.

Why, oh why does it need you to be a certain distance and pointed a certain way to work? I’m standing near the thing. There’s NOTHING ELSE I could possibly want to doing except opening this box, accessing this panel, placing this sonic charge, whatever. NOTHING. But I gotta be lined up just so before the dot saying “yeah you can press triangle here” turns into a triangle so I can press triangle there. Maddening.

2. The multi-stage boss fights.

I don’t necessarily mind a multi-stage boss fight as such. What I don’t like is first, a multi-stage boss fight where the strategy doesn’t materially change between stages (Spider-Man 2) and also multi-stage boss fights where there’s no indication how many stages there are because each stage has its own health bar for the boss (also Spider-Man 2). The only reason to make these boss fights this long are to make room for all the EMOTIONAL STORY BEATS they want to have during the boss fight, which, OK, but then give me one health bar so I can see how close I’m actually getting to winning, and also make the stages shorter so, when I emerge from a cutscene to learn the boss fight is still going on, I don’t groan at the thought of five more minutes of dodge dodge dodge parry attack special special.

3. It’s too long.

The ending is a slog, again, because they have a set quantity of story beats they want to hit, and it’s too many, and also the story beats are drawn out by long boss fight stages and intermediate goon fights. The finale could have lost 30-60 minutes, easy, and I’d have been happier.

4. A little too much game for the mechanics.

After two full long games of this, there’s only so many things you can accomplish with the game’s standard mechanics. That means you end up with a LOT of situations where swinging, gliding, and punching goons are a METAPHOR for internal struggle or used as a way to solve problems that aren’t really solved naturally by swinging, gliding, and punching goons. The only way I can come to terms, emotionally, with my reviled nemesis and my lust for revenge? Play through a series of goon fights! I get it, but you do it too much and it really starts to become noticeable and distracting.

Still tons of fun and still my absolute favorite open-world game because it’s the most linear open-world game ever made (that may be another post) but a few flaws.

Friday, December 29, 2023

GAP FILLED: Henry Jones, Sr.

I think barring some serious clearance prices, I’m done with A/dventure Series now., unless Hasbro decides to revive it after putting out three waves and pausing.

Saturday, December 23, 2023

The Semi-Regular Kids Warehouse Haul


This pic goes up top because it’s the one I put the most effort into.

For the second time now, researching a toy has led me to a toy I didn’t know esited. or had dismissed, only to find it dirt cheap at Kids Warehouse, reminding me that Kids Warehouse exists, reminding me that they sell a lot of Hasbro on the dirt cheap, causing me to make a… hefty purchase.

For the record, the toys listed here averaged out to about $8.50 each with shipping.

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

ANOTHER EARLY PREORDER: Affordable Chainsaw Man!

I mean, I -assume- they’d be mortal enemies?

I really enjoyed Chainsaw Man So it was a goddamned shame when all the action figures from the show were in lines with $70+ price points.

Tuesday, December 19, 2023



Hasbro keeps sending me stuff early. Well, as long as it’s Marvel stuff,. Star Wars stuff can apparently take its sweet fucking time.

Thursday, December 14, 2023

FIGURE PHOTO: The Team Gets Beheld

 I have a Beholder. I have the full D&D movie team. I have some effects packages. 

These Beholder powers are not remotely accurate, based on my limited research, except for Xenk getting petrified. But “being charmed by a charm ray” isn’t as visually interesting as “Chris Pine getting the ever-loving bejesus lightninged out of him.  And so I did that.

Sunday, December 10, 2023

FIGURE PHOTOS: Fun With Skellingtons


This is just an idea I had to use the Golden Axe skeletons, which are very versatile, The image of one crawling out a desert well stuck in my head. Been playing around with new ways to do glowing effects, outlines, and shadows with the tools at my disposal - you can see a result on the side of the well here.

They’re attacking the Indy guys because, well, they’re animated skeletons. Seems right.

Monday, December 4, 2023

HOLDAY SALE CRAP PART 3: Two Random, Cheap Hasbros


I’ve learned it’s a good idea to just stack my Entertainment Earth cart with preorders until I hit the free shipping point, and then sit for a bit, because sometimes, they have a couple of dirt cheap figures on a bonus sale where they end up being like eight bucks each, so you just add them to your preorder cart, and boom, free shipping. Hence, Dark Trooper.

Sunday, December 3, 2023


Hasbro Pulse also had a sale. Hasbro Pulse’s sale was 25% off. Hasbro Pulse still had beholders. Fuck yeah I got a beholder.

Saturday, December 2, 2023

HOLIDAY SALE CRAP PART 1: Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3


I really, really liked Guardians of the Galaxy V3. I’ve seen it three times now. But the figure situation was… weird.

Monday, November 27, 2023

FIG PHOTO: “Hey, Remember That Meme They Memed? Yeah, That One”


I now have three Danhausens.

When I had two Danhausens, I did the Spider-Man membe, because of course I did. So when I got three Danhausens, I knew I’d be doing a Danhausen version of the time the three Spidermans from No Way Home recreated the Spider-Man pointing meme.

This is one-shot, which means a BUNCH of trial and error attemts getting the spacing and proportions as close as I could considering the proportions of a Jazwares figure and the proportions of a Spider-Man-playing actor do NOT match. Have a side-by-side.

Sunday, November 26, 2023

FIG PHOTO: The Dawn Of Hookhausen


Back in August, I went to a miniatures show. And at that show, I bought a few things, but the most important and specific thing I bought was a 1:12 scale bag of Doritos. Why did I buy a 1:12 scale bag of Doritos? This is why.

Saturday, November 25, 2023



In a world where Hasbro preorders show up two months before their expected release date, it’s almopst refreshing when Amazon and Jazwares get you your Hookhuasen 2-pack a month late. Almost.

Friday, November 24, 2023



I don’t think I was expecting the GameDimensions’ Tekken Jin Kazama in November, but I know for sure I wasn’t expecting PANTS.

Thursday, November 23, 2023

EARLY PREORDERS PART 1: Infinity :Saga Wave


Preorder the Marvel Legends Infinity Saga wave now! Coming in January 2024! Or, maybe, NOvember 2023, I guess?

Ah well. That’s the way of things. Anyway, I ordered two figures from this wave - a character/outfit I liked but wasn’t collecting back in the day, and a new figure for the Guys In Suits collection.

Toss! (PSVR2)


He flies through the air with a complete lack of ease….

Happy Thanksgiving! This year,, the holiday happens to fall smack in the middle of the latest attempt to Get More Activity In A Tiny House During A Minnesota Winter And No I Will Not Be Joining A Gym That Will Not Work Out.

Sunday, November 12, 2023



Finishing off the half of the Marvel Legends X-Men ‘97 wave that I want (sorry, Bishop, Sorm (got one just like her already) and Wolverine (ditto), it’s Gambit!

And what better way to represent Gambit than a metaphor for his entire animated characterization, surfing on a giant wave of gumbo.

Friday, November 10, 2023


I ordered this two Mondays ago, and BigBadToyStore shipped it so fast from Wisconsin via Fedex that SKELETONS ARRIVED ON HALLOWEEN.

Saturday, October 21, 2023

PREORDER BRIDGE: Tekken Heihachi and Kazuya

I got one of my preordered GameDimensions Tekken figures while I was on fvacation, and one shortly after. Yes, we’ve officially moved on, sort of, from the pile of shit that dropped on my doorstep while I was away.

Thursday, October 19, 2023

FIG PHOTO: “Sugahausen”

I don’t have any plans currently for any big projecxts, so I’ve just kind of been fucking around mixing and matching new stuff as the mood strikes.

Tuesday, October 17, 2023

FIG PHOTO: “All The Championships”

Nothing fancy here. I got some Danhausen parts, I dug four belts out from the Big Bag Of Belts, and did as the man has commanded - give Danhausen all the gold. 

This was just a little something to fiddle with during tour bus down time. 

Monday, October 16, 2023



The #2 property by quantity, if not by weight, in the Preordered Figures I Got While On Vacation list is Power Rangers.  The Lightning Collection appears to be winding down / taking a break, but they’re going out strong.

Sunday, October 15, 2023

DREAM MATCH: Danhausen Vs. Juggernaut

One of the things I’ve been working on in my spare time is a new background fro the Dream Match pictures. This one is better than my previous one, but still not exactly what I want. I need something with a more prominent crowd. But this’ll do for the time being. I mean, I suppose I could buy an AEW scale ring and use that but they take up SO much space.

Saturday, October 14, 2023


When I got back from this year’s Europe trip, I had COVID and a giant pile of toys. Both were expected, to a certain extent, but I was hoping for less of both. But apparently everything is shipping in October except for the things that are supposed to ship in October, Amazin.

Anyway, I got some Marvel Legends. Two of the three X-Men 97 figs I preordered, because they go well with the animated VHS ones I’ve been getting. First is Magneto, who’s a little more Slenderman / anime proportions in the new show but is still quite nice. Wouldn’t have minded an unmasked head though. 

And then Rogue, who, again, is what I wanted - pretty much classic 90’s style. She comes with bonus hands that I used for a different pic so I’ll talk about those when I post that but they’re very specific and awesome. 

Finally, I got the two pack of Deadpool and Bob, Agent of HYDRA. I somehow never got a comic Deadpool, and this one is on Hasbro’s best dude body. Plus, they come with a shit ton of accessories in colors that are apparently a nod to the old TMNT toys. I just know I got a pink rocket launcher.  And Bob, who’s a perfectly serviceable goon dude since I’m unfamiliar with the character. 

Thursday, October 5, 2023

FIG PHOTO: “Another Meme, Yes, That One”

 This is so self-explanatory I’m not even going to bother saying it’s self-explanatory then explain it anyway.


 In yet another undisclosed location, getting caught up on posts before I return to a feet-high stack of preorder boxes. DOUbZLE DANHAUSENS!

Friday, September 29, 2023

Pre-Vacation Clearance Party!


Writing this from an as-yet-undisclosed location, because I’m watching preorders charge and ship while I’m on vacation and it’s gonna get hectic so I’d better be all caught up.

Saturday, September 23, 2023

FIG PHOTO: “Revenge”, aka “In Soviet Russia…”

… cat eats YOU!

 We conclude our Alf miniseries with the picture I’ve had in my brain ever since I first thought about getting the ALF figure, a little switcheroo courtesy of the Flerkitten that comes with the Marvel Legends Marvels’ Ms. Marvel. 

Say that three times fast.

Friday, September 22, 2023

FIG PHOTOS: Wolverine Meme


Thursday, September 21, 2023

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

DREAM GUEST: Alf on Hey! (EW)

“You’re always saying ‘I kill me.’ Why so negative? Why not ‘I love me?’”

I don’t know why the Alf figure gave me so many ideas. I go where the muse strikes me and I am not in control. There’s two more on deck for fuck’s sake.

Tuesday, September 19, 2023



Why did the worst Remastered figure shop three months early, and before the Black Ranger, which was supposed to be out in August? Do not question Hasbro or their ways.

Saturday, September 16, 2023

FIG PHOTO: Spider-Verse vs. The Sinister… 11?

 The genesis of this photo is very, very basic. “Man, I’ve been getting a lot of Spidey villains lately.” And I have! 

So I went through and grabbed every one I could find except Michael Keaton Vulture because one, I’m excluding MCU from this (I have VERY few MCU Spidey figures overall) and two, he’s an utter pain in the ass to photograph. So, ten villains.

So then it was “How many Spider-People do I have, not counting the three different “red-and-blue-costume” Spideys. Hey, that also makes 10.

I had originally thought about trying to pose each side as single pictures, or possibly two groups per side, but I did the math on the stands I have, the space I had available, and the verticality I wanted and quickly gave up on that plan.

So I posed and shot all 20 figures individually, composited them, layered them, rearranged them, found a few spots where I wanted a lower layer to overlap a higher layer (a lot with Doc Ock’s tentacles) and erased bits accordingly.

Then my Smythe/Peter Parker two pack charged to my card a couple months early so I realized I needed to wait a bit. 

When it arrived, I added Smythe to what is now the Sinister 11, and Peter Parker to where he needed to be. 

So then it was just doing some adjustments so that the lighting mismatches didn’t stand out too too much, and boom, done. The full list:

SPIDERVERSE: Marvel Legends Spidey (Amazing Friends 3-Pack); Spider-Verse 1 Miles, Gwen, Peter B. Parker, Noir, and Ham; Spider-Verse 2 Punk and Woman; Toy Biz Marvel Legends Symbiote Spider-Man, comics 2099. Animated Series Peter Parker.

SINISTER 11: Retro-card Tarantula, Lizard, Scorpion and Rhino; Animated 2-Pack Goblin, Doc Ock and Smythe; Into The Spider-Verse Wave Fog-Man, Prowler, and Stilt-Man BAF; Venom (Venom/Knull 2-Pack, wings off).

Friday, September 15, 2023

Mortal Kombat 1 (The Toy, Not THe Game)

 Arcade games are one of my favorite figure props. There have been a few lately as working toys that I’ve used, but none of the working miniature machines in the standard arcade game style are right. For various reasons, their proportions are off.

So when I was poking around for various 1/12-scale game-related items, I stumbled across this on Etsy. It’s a basic plastic cast arcade game mold and printed, applied stickers for a wide variety of games for 20 bucks plus shipping. It’s the right proportions, and a wide variety of sticker applications are available.

I went with the original Mortal Kombat, because, well, it’s absolutely classic. I would have gotten the original vector Star Wars game, but they don’t have unique molds for games with unique controllers or cabinets. I might have gotten like three if the Star Wars and/or the Tron had accurate controllers, but I understand why they don’t.

Anyway, it arrived quickly and looks good. But how well does it work with my figures?

Player 1 AND Player 2!

Not… bad. It’s a little small, because it’s strict 6” scale and most of my ostensibly 6” scale figures run larger than that to various degrees. Marvel Legends looks good, but my Jazwares Hnagman Adam Page looked huge next to it. One of the problems is that a lot of figures have longer than normally-proportioned legs, so while on a normal arcade machine, your waist would line up pretty good with where the controllers live, here they ride higher, so you have to do knee bends to get their hands anywhere near the controls. But it can be worked with, and it’s not like there are even better alternatives out there to choose from.

Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Sea Of Starsfield

Maybe it’s because I’m old, but if you look at the games I’ve spent time with, enjoyed, or beaten over the past few years, the one thing they have in common is that they’re easy to play.