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Pojo's Friday News Page
November 4th - 2005


CARLSBAD – October 24, 2005 – A proud sponsor of the inaugural BlizzCon™ celebration, Upper Deck Entertainment (UDE) is pleased to give World of Warcraft ®fans their first glimpse of the highly-anticipated trading card game based on Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.’s highly-successful massively multiplayer online game. On Friday and Saturday, October 28 and 29, UDE will host comic artist Andrew Robinson (Vs. System™, Dusty Star) and Eisner Award-winning comic artist Dave Dorman (Star Wars, King Kong) at the UDE booth, as they create original art pieces for the upcoming sold in a charity auction at the end of the event.

“The World of Warcraft TCG will capture all of the online game’s action-packed combat and furious competition,” said Cory Jones, Director of UDE Brand and Business Development. “We are pleased to have top artists like Robinson and Dorman on board making our new TCG visually engaging for players, and will continue to enlist dozens of marquee level artists to ensure our cards feature the jaw dropping art that is a signature of all Upper Deck gaming products.”

Earlier this year, UDE announced plans to create and distribute a trading card game (TCG) based on the biggest game in the massively multiplayer online role playing game (MMORPG) genre, World of Warcraft. Teaming up with award-winning and internationally recognized online computer gaming company Blizzard Entertainment, Inc., UDE’s World of Warcraft TCG -- and its supporting Organized Play programs -- will be available to consumers in Summer of 2006.

World of Warcraft is the most popular MMORPGs in the world, with more than four and a half million paying customers playing the game in North America, Australia, New Zealand, Korea, Europe, China and Singapore, with even more players slated to join when the game launches in Taiwan later this year. In World of Warcraft, players assume the roles of legendary heroes

and interact with thousands of other players online as they explore, adventure and quest across a vast realm. Whether journeying together or fighting against one another in epic battles, players form friendships, forge alliances and compete with enemies for power and glory.

Join Forces to Create
The Next Big Thing in Card Games

NEW YORK, NY—OCTOBER 25, 2005— First, the world went crazy for Pokémon and Yu-Gi-Oh! Now trendsetting 21st century boys are ready for something new, bigger and even more gripping. RIOT Media, Inc., the only all-encompassing lifestyle brand for tween boys, and WizKids, Inc., the leader in collectible entertainment, have entered into a groundbreaking brand partnership to create the ultimate collectible card game aimed at the underserved market of tween boys.

Launching Spring 2006 at Walmart, Target and Toys R Us outlets and at Riotweb.com’s Riot Buy It Shop, RIOT: THE COLLECTIBLE CARD GAME provides all the thrills, chills, humor, strategy and collectibility that 8- to 14-year-old boys find so enthralling. A creepy circus has come to a small American city, complete with horrifying, nefarious clowns, freaky acrobats and slavering beasts. Only intrepid tween and teen protagonists, along with their mischievous ally, Riot the Chimp, can save the hometown from certain doom. This sparks an epic battle of good vs. evil as our young heroes strive valiantly to overcome the scary and gross villains.

“WizKids is an undisputed leader in collectible games and we are thrilled to be teaming with them to create the next big thing in card games,” states Jay Gissen, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of RIOT Media, Inc. “RIOT: THE COLLECTIBLE CARD GAME is the only card game out there designed just for tween boys and, as the only lifestyle brand for this underserved audience, we know the card game will take their world by storm.”

“Teaming with RIOT Media to reach tween boys is an exciting opportunity to partner with the leader in tween entertainment,” adds Jordan Weisman, WizKids CEO. “With their knowledge of the market and our knowledge of games, we’ve created a perfect storm for the ‘next big thing.’”

The story behind RIOT: THE COLLECTIBLE CARD GAME also threads throughout RIOT Media’s other properties, including a brand-new comic slated to launch in late November, and the company’s flagship website, Riotweb.com. On Riotweb.com, card game players will soon be able to learn about game-related news and upcoming tournaments, get sneak previews and even enter contests to create a character or draw a card, all for a seamless RIOT: THE COLLECTIBLE CARD GAME web experience.

RIOT’s formidable marketing support of RIOT: THE COLLECTIBLE CARD GAME includes active contributions from two of RIOT’s partners, The Robert Thorne Company and VPI.Net. The Robert Thorne Company is a leading marketing and licensing firm specializing in lifestyle brands for tweens and teens including a 15-year tenure building the mary-kateandashley brand and brand management for Hilary Duff. VPI.Net is a leading interactive marketing firm that builds uniquely promotional online initiatives for major network television series, America’s #1 Internet service provider, and many leading brands.

Fullmetal Alchemist TCG hits the century mark

Prices for Fullmetal Alchemist TCG singles continue to soar, with a new high reached earlier this week on eBay. Several chase and transmutated (plastic) cards have been going for $50 and up, but a new high was set last Oct. 26. A copy of Roy Mustang, Master Manipulator sold for $102.50, breaking the previous observed record for a single card of $91, paid for a Lust, Femme Fatale chase card on Sept. 21.

In total, 175 individual cards have sold on eBay for $10 or more since the Fullmetal Alchemist TCG was released in August. 77 of those cards have been sold for over $25, and 14 cards have sold for $50 or more. In the wake of pre-release tournaments for the first expansion, Blood & Water, some chase cards from that set have already appeared on eBay, with bids at $10 to $20 and rising.

About Fullmetal Alchemist TCG

Based on the top-rated anime series on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim, the Fullmetal Alchemist TCG released in August with a 240-card Premier Edition base set. The first expansion set, Blood & Water, releases Nov. 9 and adds 110 cards to the game. It includes a full parallel foil set and a subset of chase cards printed on clear plastic. The game is supported with tournaments, a web site, and a dedicated volunteer corps. For more information, visit http://www.fma-tcg.com

D&D Minis Go Underground...

New Underdark™ Booster Set to Feature Elminster, Spiders of Lolth, Dragons and Drow

October 27, 2005 (Renton, Wash.) – This November, Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc. (NYSE: HAS), invites players to explore the Underdark, the vast underground region below the FORGOTTEN REALMS®. This latest booster pack in the highly successful DUNGEONS & DRAGONS® Miniatures™ line will feature iconic creatures from the Underdark world, including the infamous and very popular drow elves.

Like the previous D&D Miniatures boosters, the figures in the Underdark set are chosen from key D&D titles such as the Monster Manual, Book of Exalted Deeds, and Complete Adventurer. The set also features a wealth of characters from Forgotten Realms products such as Underdark, Unapproachable East, City of the Spider Queen, and the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting. Forgotten Realms novel readers will also recognize a range of familiar characters from best-selling titles, including R.A. Salvatore’s assassin adventurer Artemis Entreri and the wizard Elminster.

Each Underdark booster pack includes eight randomized, pre-painted, plastic miniatures, stat cards for each miniature, and a set checklist. As an added bonus, eight miniatures will also have a second stat card that features epic-level stats specifically for high-level versions of those figures. 

January Shonen Jump Biggest Ever

Celebrating Shonen Jump USA's third anniversary, the January issue (on sale December 6th) will be an over-sized 392 pages, the largest issue printed to date.

One of the special features for this issue will be a 55-page preview of the Gintama manga, along with a 2-page feature article on Gintama and a 1-page full color article on the Gintama TV series. FullStory

4Kids Rolls Out Yu-Gi-Oh! GX

NEW YORK, November 2: RTL2, Mediaset and Canal J are among the broadcasters that have signed up for 4Kids Entertainment’s new animated series Yu-Gi-Oh! GX.

The 52-episode series has also been licensed to RTE Ireland, TVNZ, SIC in Portugal, and RTL-TVI in Belgium, among others. Yu-Gi-Oh! GX recently launched on Cartoon Network’s popular Miguzi programming block in the U.S. and on YTV in Canada. FullStory

Kids' WB! November

Kids' WB! has announced their television programming slate for the month of November 2005; and from the early weeks, animation fans will be treated to television debus, new episodes of breakout hit series' and returning fan favorites that have delighted audiences for months on end. Kids' WB! will be taking control of the Fall season with the exciting animated television series Viewtiful Joe in addition to the continually successful weekend programming block Saturday Unleashed, which features ratings hits such as The Batman, Johnny Test, and Loonatics Unleashed.  FullStory

'Girl Power' through Japanese comics

The exhibition and symposium titled "Shojo Manga Power! Girl Comics from Japan " — running through Dec. 7 — features hand-selected art covering 60 years of the medium and expert speakers on important aspects of manga and related genres.

According to the New York Times article, shojo — meaning girl in Japanese — tends to involve angst-filled teen situations such as finding a boyfriend, going to a new school or escaping a clique.  FullStory

National Dungeons and Dragons Day November 5

There are those for whom the old-fashioned fire of geekery, forged on tabletops and bound with the rolling of the dice, never dies. It may slumber deeply as the mundane tasks of daily life intrude; but for those who are truly called to the task, Dungeons & Dragons are forever. Your alter ego is merely waiting to be woken so that she may join glorious battle once more.

Saturday November 5th may be just the clarion call to waken the nerd buried deep within. November 5th is Worldwide D&D Day - a celebration of 31 years of the venerable pen-and-paper game that's been a core influence for so many electronic games.  FullStory

Dungeons & Dragons Online(TM): Stormreach(TM) Kicks Off Public Beta with IGN; Beta for ''Most-Anticipated MMO'' To Launch On Top-Ranked Gaming Network

"We are excited about opening the public Beta with IGN," said Jeffrey Anderson, president and CEO of Turbine, Inc. "An outstanding game like Dungeons & Dragons Online deserves a great Beta partner."  FullStory

Cryptozoologist got his start at SIUC (The study of Monsters)

This week Coleman is celebrating the first-ever Creature Appreciation Week, sponsored by the Wizards of the Coast's Duel Masters trading card game, for which Coleman is also a consultant. Coleman says children's interest in these creatures is often a gateway to education in the sciences.

"I get 500 e-mails a day from kids 7 and 8 and up through college who are interested in monsters. I tell them to stay in school and follow their passions." FullStory

2K Games drops Zathura to PS2 and Xbox

2K Games said Thursday that it has dropped Zathura for the PS2 and Xbox to North American retailers. The game is based on Columbia Pictures' family film, Zathura: A Space Adventure, due out Nov. 11.

Zathura is based on the best-selling children's book by Chris Van Allsburg.

The video game features film and book environments, and more than 36 alien enemies, including Zorgons and robots.

Players can take the role of Walter or Danny, two brothers who have unique stengths and abilities. FullStory

Star Wars Battlefront II (PS2, XB, PSP) – Screens and Features

Become the Jedi you have always wanted to be with Star Wars Battlefront II.....

THE STAR WARS BRAND, in itself, is a hugely successful franchise, and it comes as no surprise that Star Wars Battlefront II promises to be just as successful. FullStory

Battlefield 2 Contest
Kill stuff and win money.

Two questions. Do you like Battlefield 2: Modern Combat? Do you like tons of money? Well, if you answered yes to at least one of those, then you should be interested in Electronic Arts' "Best of the Battlefield" Online Tournament. Provided you have a clan or can scrap one together you'll be able to sign up for this first come, first served competition. FullStory

Tony Hawk American Wasteland (Xbox, Xbox 360, PS2, Nintendo GameCube - Activision)

The Tony Hawk series suffers from the same success as the Madden NFL franchise. The basics don't change so how do you make each year better than the last? Easy, offer a lot more features and slightly better graphics.  FullStory

PlayStation 2 Slim-Line Compatibility Problems Identified

Though the latest hardware revision of Sony's PlayStation 2, the "slimline" SCPH-70000, has no known compatibility differences with the models that have been sold since March 2000, an upcoming modification beginning with the Japanese SCPH-75000 line introduces some problems with a few games in the system's lineup. A list of the affected games has been posted to Sony of Japan's site, and translated by consumer site IGN.com. FullStory

Pokemon Torouze
Yoshi's Cookie evolves for a new franchise. Hands on with the import.

One of the coolest puzzle games during the whole "Let's be better than Tetris" era was Yoshi's Cookie, a tile-matching game that required players to slide rows and columns around to pair up like-patterned pastries together to remove them from play. It wasn't a concept as classic as the Russian puzzle design, but it still had its merits. And, of course, it had Yoshi headlining it all, so it's not all that bad. FullStory

Kids Can Challenge Their Pokemon Knowledge in New Racing Themed Windows PC Game

AGOURA HILLS, Calif., Oct. 27 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- THQ Inc.
(Nasdaq: THQI) today announced today announced the release of Pokemon(R): Team Turbo. Published by ValuSoft, a division of THQ, this game is rated "E" for Everyone and will be available at retailers throughout North America for $19.99 SRP.

"Pokemon: Team Turbo features everyone's favorite Pokemon characters," stated Scott Zerby, Vice President of ValuSoft. "Kids can race 'em all in fast-paced speed matches, while the games test their knowledge of each Pokemon character. And with multiple skill levels, fans of all ages can enjoy the fun." FullStory

Pokemon XD: Gale of Darkness
Disaster about as big as the droppings of an angry shadow Lugia

The end result is a disaster of epic proportions. Not only is this game perhaps among the worst the franchise has seen, but it is also perhaps the worst game to come out this year.  FullStory

Pokémon Ranger
Could this turn out to be the worlds first rainforest preservation simulator?

As you might be able to ascertain from the screens below, Pokémon Ranger is in fact a new DS title. All we really know about the game thus far (courtesy of a French-to-English translator and Jeux-France.com) is that players will take control of a forester that lives in the magical world of Pokémon. Your task will be to protect a forest from an intense onslaught of aggravated monsters; you will of course have some trusty Pocket Monsters to aid you on your mission.  FullStory

Nintendo get writing on DS

Nintendo, in their wise zen-fuelled wisdom, are set to encourage handwriting on the DS handheld, as part of a new deal signed with the vaguely scary sounding Zi Corporation. The new deal will see the Big N licensing Zi's Decuma handwriting recognition software for the handheld console, and this will add yet another feather in the DS' already impressive cap of control/input methods. The Decuma technology is usually used in PDAs and the like. FullStory

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