Rapid Reviews: Comics and More (Quarantine Special)

The Gamer by Sangyoung Seong and Sang-A (Webtoons): The comic features a young man who one day gains the abilities of a gamer; he can level up his intelligence and strength. He is also able to learn new skills. The series has a interesting premise and the art style is nice. The characters have a realistic comic book look, but the switch between the “realistic” style and the cartoony-over-dramatic drawings offer a break and humor. The fact the comic focuses more on the main character leveling up than battles and action is also a unique choice (at this point I’ve only ready about 50 parts, so that might change later). What I enjoyed about his semi-lack of fights is that I didn’t noticed it until I was about 40 parts into it. Even though most of the story involves the main character pondering what to do, the series is not slow nor without mystery.

Erift’s Journeys: Secrets of the Sealed Forest by J.T. Tenera: Tenera accomplished what most writers dream of–an interesting hook. The beginning of the book immediately peaked my interest. The interaction between Joseph and Eric kept the book interesting and alive. However, the book does enter a dry period as Professor Ben explains his research in great detail. I kept feeling like, “Let’s get on with it.” But, the book ends strongly with a lot of suspense, action, and mystery. I enjoyed that the ending was left open with the “Big Bad” escaping and hints that Joseph’s story is far from over, but Secrets of the Sealed Forest left me satisfied. I felt like while the overall story was not over this adventure was; the story did not leave me with a feeling of frustration or like I had a hole inside.


DOOM Eternal

DOOM ETERNAL Walkthrough Gameplay Part 1 – INTRO (FULL GAME) by theRadBrad ‪(YouTube)

DOOM ETERNAL Gameplay Walkthrough Part 1 – 2+ HOURS FULL GAME – Intro + Mission 1 PS4 DOOM Gameplay by‬ GhostRobo (YouTube)

DOOM ETERNAL Gameplay Walkthrough Part 1 FULL GAME [1080p 60FPS PC ULTRA] – No Commentary by MKIceAndFire (YouTube)

The soundtrack and setting was awesome. I loved how the soundtrack made you feel like you were a slayer/gladiator ripping and tearing your way through horde after horde of demons. The set pieces always amazed me. The scenes made me feel small (yet strangely not powerless) while also making me feel like I was part of the world; I felt transported to the universe of DOOM. Since I hadn’t played a DOOM game in a very long time, and only for about a half hour or hour then giving it up, I was lost with all the talk about Maykrs and the Legend of the Slayer. And the game didn’t offer much in the way of help. I finally had to look it up on the Internet. But, I was still confused by why Doomguy would trust anything Dr. Hayden would say after he apparently betrayed Doomguy in one of the other games. Doomguy seemed to have no problem following Hayden’s orders. Finally, I enjoyed that the game never seemed to have a slow moment. It seemed like you were always on the move–especially during battle (you stood still for very long, you were killed). DOOM Eternal is a pure adrenaline rush from soundtrack to setting to action.


Urban Animal by Justin Jordan and John Amor (Webtoons): Urban Animal follows the life of Joe Gomez who discovers he can change into any animal, even going so far as to mixing parts and creating new animals. I enjoyed the raw art style. It felt very primal and animistic. The sharp edges and semi-muted colors gave the comic a very ancient, caveman-like feel. I could have lived without so many naked people scenes (Joe and other Chimera can’t morph their clothes–thankfully they can use nature to make a new set). As for the story, the writing was excellent. I felt like the story was always moving forward and that every scene meant something.

The Boring Days and Awesome Nights of Roy Winklesteen by Sally Dill: Dill seemed to know her audience. The book is definitely designed for middle school readers. The story’s flow of easily resolved problems isn’t ideal for adult or teen readers but is excellent for younger readers who want to “feel safe.” However, this ease of conflict resolution leaves the story feeling like there is no rise in action or risk to the character. In one chapter, Roy’s father uncovers how Roy escapes from his room every night. Roy is worried that his father will remove the rope. In the end, the father forgets about the rope. Roy doesn’t even have to attempt to convince his father to leave the rope or plot another escape. One feature of the story I enjoyed the most is that many of the unimportant events are summarized. When Roy decides to spy on his neighbor, I thought, “Oh no, now we’ll have 10 chapters of him following his neighbor around.” I was happy to see that the spying lasted about a paragraph–the story then moved on to the next plot point.

Ialin’s Curse by Isakytm (Webtoons): I felt that the artwork pulled you in. The switching between light colored scenes to dark, more threatening scenes set the mood. I felt as in danger as David did. When David felt frightened, I did as well. I am also glad that the series creator answered many of questions while leaving just enough unanswered to keep me coming back. The author also did an excellent job of placing cliffhangers for ultimate effect. 

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading.


From Mar. 20-Apr. 20 The Beast of Camp TimberWolf and Gift of the Minion will be 60% off during the Smashwords Authors Give Back sale.

The Secret Meaning Of (Cliffhanger)

I must be suffering from Quarantine Brain. I woke up in the middle of the night and thought, “I’ve figured out the secret of…Minecraft.” (What you thought I was going to tell you the secret of life?)

I realized that Minecraft is not real. I don’t mean not real as in it’s a video game. I mean, obviously it isn’t real. No, I mean that it is not a post-apocalyptic world. It is all in a person’s mind. Their imagination/creative space to be more exact. And to be even more exact, the mind of a young teen or older child. 

Think about it for a second. Cake replenishes your Hunger while carrots, melon, and apples only refill your Hunger a little. But, once you cover the apple or carrot in gold (*ahem* caramel), it becomes way more useful. In what world is cake and junk food better for you? A kid’s world.

Also, you can build and do just about anything in the world of Minecraft. Where else can you do just about anything? In your imagination–especially in the imagination of kids.

But, I’m thinking that the Minecraft world takes place in the mind of older children or young teens because of the ruins and the mobs. The ruins are the old playthings of youth. As we get older, we no longer want to be an explorer looking for treasure in jungles or under the sea. We are no longer interested in playing pirate and looking for buried treasure. We also start to realize that we’ve been placed in this lonely and wild world and we have to survive it.

In other words, the person is at that point where they are growing up but haven’t quite let go of fun and magic.

As for the mobs…

Zombies: These represent those who follow the trends. This is why they all wear the same clothes. They follow the latest trends (fashion or otherwise) and want to “convert” everyone else.

Creepers: Seems pretty self-explanatory. Camouflaged people who like to hang around your base and sneak up behind you then go “tsss.” You know…creepy people. Stalkers, perverts, people who just like to ruin your work by blowing up once you step outside. You know, jerks and creeps.

Endermen: The cool kids. They pretty much leave you alone unless you look at them. Some might chip away at your confidence by running off with blocks from your build (i.e. make fun of your skills, personality, or appearance). They also seem to have the cool clothes/skills (i.e. teleporting–or running really fast depending on which game theory you believe).

And then finally, you make it to the home of the cool kids (The End). You think it’s going to be this awesome place full of awesome things and people, but it really is just a wasteland with a bunch of people standing around. That’s when you learn that they are being enslaved by their own “coolness.” They have to obey the Rules of Cool or the Alpha Cool Kid (the Ender Dragon). It is then your realize the reason they stole your build’s blocks was not out of spite but because they want to craft and build like you.  You then realize they are not as scary as you thought; they’re like you.

Spiders: Fear. They’re scary at night; but during the daytime, they’re not so bad. Or maybe hormones; one minute you’re calm then someone attacks and you go crazy.

The Villagers: These guys and gals are adults. The villagers have, well, a village. They have “civilization.” They have jobs and trading/commerce. It is also nearly impossible to get them to do what you want. They are confusing and stubborn and you wish Mojang would just make it so you could use leads on them! Also, they go “meh, meh, meh,” at you all the time just like the adults in the Peanuts comic strip (LOL). 

Next, the Nether. It is pretty obvious that is supposed to be school. I mean, the Ghasts are wailing. The soul sand holds the tormented souls of students. If you say or do or wear the wrong thing the Pigmen (now the Piglins) will attack you in force; everyone will come after you and not leave you alone until they have pummeled you to death. But you have to go to school (the Nether) in order to mature (i.e. get potion ingredients so you can become faster or stronger or be able to craft an Eye of Ender).

Also, there are the beds. What happens when you try to sleep in the Nether? BOOM! The bed explodes. What happens if you try to sleep in school? BOOM! The teacher comes at you with a ruler.

The Nether could also be puberty. *Shivers* Puberty. What a horrifying word.

Now, one last word to sum up this theory. Have you noticed that the mobs only spawn at night or in dark places? And when do monsters come out to frighten kids? Night. How do kids protect themselves from the monsters? Nightlights. How do you stop the monsters from spawning in Minecraft? Torches or other light sources.

But hey, that’s just a theory…

Nope, no. I’m not going to do it. I’m not going to make fun of The Game Theorists’ catchphrase, but I will mention they have been working on a Minecraft Mega-Theory. And with that I finish by saying…

Happy April Fools! 

Now you get to decide if this post was an April Fools joke or not.


This post might have been an April Fool’s gag but the Smashwords Authors Give Back sale (Mar. 20-Apr. 20) is not. The sale was created by Smashwords authors who wanted to help those who are feeling isolated or bored thanks to COVID-19 and social distancing. As part of this sale, two of my books are 60% off and you can pick them up at this link or you can check out the books by other authors here.

Recommended #44 (Quarantine Special)

The following are my opinion and do not reflect the opinion of any organization or person.

Bored and don’t know what to do during this pandemic quarantine? Here are some videos and artwork you might enjoy. Please consider showing your support by following/subscribing, liking, and commenting on the sites of these hard working creatives (where applicable).

der.unsterblich9 (Instagram)

ash_or_sketch (Instagram)

HannahsCraftyArt (Etsy Shop)

Ghost Paper
Bruce Carbon Lakeriver
Art with Flo
Grian

Do you have any recommendations? Tell me in the comments.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading.


Don’t forget to follow and turn on notifications so you can know when I post again.

Authors Give Back Sale

Two of my books (The Beast of Camp TimberWolf and Gift of the Minion) will be on sale for 60% off during the Smashwords Authors Give Back sale. It runs from Mar. 20 to Apr. 20. The discount is only on Smashwords.

Stay safe and healthy during this time (and other times).

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading.


Who Pranked JR releases March 24!