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Games + Leisure

Games + Leisure

Book News: The Clash Of The Comic(-)Cons

Jul 28, 2014

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly. The nation's biggest comic book convention has issued a cease-and-desist letter to the nation's third-biggest comic book convention over the use of the name "Comic Con," The Associated Press reports . A lawyer for San Diego's Comic-Con wrote to the Salt Lake City Comic Con (whose name doesn't have a hyphen): "Attendees, exhibitors and fans seeing use of 'Comic Con' in connection with your convention will...

On-air challenge: Today's puzzle is a game of categories based on the word peony. For each category, name something in the category beginning with each of the letters P-E-O-N-Y. Last week's challenge: Name something in five letters that's nice to have a lot of in the summer. Change the last letter to the following letter of the alphabet. Rearrange the result, and you'll name something else that you probably have a lot of in the summer, but that you probably don't want. What is it? (HINT: the...

When the news broke that Thor, the hyper-masculine thunder god, had become a woman, my Twitter feed exploded. It seemed like everybody had something to say. "Who will play the female Thor in the movies?" came up a lot. Meanwhile, I first had to figure out who Thor was. To me, stories about superheroes were for nerdy white guys imagining a world where they could lift heavy things and somehow get the girl. In short, boring. I was hopelessly behind the times. But like any good journalist, I wasn...

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript SCOTT SIMON, HOST: This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Our theme music is by B.J. Leiderman. This summer, we're profiling young people with unusual jobs. So let's introduce to you now to a man who gets paid full-time to dress up as a Tyrannosaurus Rex. NPR's Kirk Siegler sent us this story from the Natural History Museum in Los Angeles. KIRK SIEGLER, BYLINE: So you know that scene in "Empire Strikes...

Nearly two decades ago, a massive wave struck the Tokio Express, a container ship that had nearly 5 million Legos onboard. The colorful toy building blocks poured into the ocean. Today, they are still washing up on shores in England. Tracey Williams and her children first happened upon the Tokio Express Legos in the late 1990s. Since then, she's created a Facebook page called — Lego Lost At Sea — where other collectors show off their findings. Williams, who lives in Cornwall, tells NPR's...

Can I Get A Do-Over? Shadow Selves And Second Chances

Jul 24, 2014

Two remarkable graphic novels being released this week are themed around shadow-selves, legacies and second chances: Bryan Lee O'Malley's Seconds is about a woman given the opportunity to magically undo past mistakes, while Gene Luen Yang and Sonny Liew's The Shadow Hero revises a mysterious golden-age superhero called the Green Turtle by fleshing out his Asian-American origins. Katie Clay is a successful chef whose skill makes Seconds the most popular restaurant in town — but after four...

'Rocket Girl' Is A Jetpack-Powered 21st Century Angel

Jul 23, 2014

One word: jetpack. You perked up, right? When most of us dream of the future, jetpacks are one of the first things we dream about. And yet, even now that the future is indisputably here, we continue to be denied the ultimate sci-fi accessory. With all the 21st-century tech we've got these days — maps that talk, hand-held videophones — why aren't we all flying through the air with the greatest of renewable-energy-fueled ease? Maybe jetpacks need a special kind of power, an explosive force the...

This week, All Things Considered is exploring how people interpret probability . What does it mean to us, for example, when a doctor says an operation has a 70 percent chance of success? One of the most common encounters with percent probabilities has to do with weather. Take a moment to consider the question below. It comes from a survey developed by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research who were researching how people understand weather forecasts. (Intrigued? We've...

Transcript AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: And now, seismic movement in the world of comic books. This week Marvel Comics announced that Thor, that hammer-wielding Norse God, will be a goddess in the next storyline. And Captain America, one of Marvel's earliest superheroes, he'll hand over his shield to sidekick Sam Wilson. And stay with me here - Sam Wilson is the Falcon. And he's African-American - so a black Captain America. To talk more about these changes, we're joined by Maggie Thompson, the...

Twenty years ago, chef Thomas Keller bought a little restaurant in Napa Valley called The French Laundry and transformed it into one of the finest restaurants in the country. He's inspired countless other chefs, consulted on the film Ratatouille , opened other award-winning restaurants, and convinced people to pay $100 for a corn pudding appetizer. We've invited Keller to play a game called "Light starch, on hangers please, and I'll need it Wednesday." Keller has done pretty well running a...

On-air challenge: Two clues will be provided. The first is for a brand name that ends in the letter S and sounds like it's plural. Change the first letter to spell a new word that is plural and answers the second clue. Example: tennis shoes, places to sleep; the answer would be Keds and beds. Last week's challenge: This challenge came from listener Ben Kaufman of Portland, Ore. Think of a popular TV show about cooking — a show everyone has heard of. Remove the second and third letters of the...

After Thor, Marvel Announces Big Change To Captain America

Jul 17, 2014

Sam Wilson will carry Captain America's shield. It's the second major announcement from comics publisher Marvel , which also said this week that the new Thor will be female . Sam Wilson, as you might (or might not) know, is the Falcon, one of Captain America's major allies. (He was played by Anthony Mackie in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. ) He also happens to be African-American, though he isn't the first black Captain America . In the current comic, Steve Rogers, the Captain America,...

From Paper To Punks, The Best Games Of 2013

Jul 16, 2014

The year passed so awfully quickly, like a twitch in a shooter game, that it kind of faked me out. A week ago, I didn't believe there were 10 stellar games to make a complete 'best of' story. But I looked at a list I'd been keeping since January. I was suddenly overwhelmed — I saw at least 30 worthy games. And from those, I plucked the very best of 2013. Grand Theft Auto V (Rockstar Games) Yes, this sprawling satire of an adult game of crime and punishment can ruffle the feathers of even the...

The game show at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) earlier in June wasn't exactly staid. But it was clear that most game publishers are playing it safe — very safe. Each year, I complain about franchise-ization, a godawful game trend that makes a convention focused on the wonders of electronic entertainment a lot less fun - especially since 2014 was the year in which game makers offered more sequels than ever before. Imagine spending eight hours daily running between two convention halls...

The Mighty Thor, the Son of Odin, the God of Thunder, the comic book god with the hammer is a woman. Not quite — but here's the tweet announcing the new Thor: "No longer is the classic Thunder God able to hold the mighty hammer, Mjölnir, and a brand new female hero will emerge worthy of the name THOR," Marvel said in a statement . The new Thor will be written by Jason Aaron with art by Russell Dauterman. "This is not She-Thor. This is not Lady Thor. This is not Thorita. This is THOR. This is...

On-air challenge: Today's puzzle is called "Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes." Every answer is a word starting with the letters "ch," and your clue will be an anagram of the word. Last week's challenge: Name a famous actress of the past whose last name has five letters. Move the middle letter to the end to name another famous actress of the past. Who are these actresses? Answer: Greta Garbo/Eva or Zsa Zsa Gabor Winner: Craig Moreland from Okemos, Mich. Next week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from...

On-air challenge: Two clues will be given for two five-letter answers. Move the middle letter of the first answer to the end of the word to get the second answer. Example: A weapon that's thrown; a tire in the trunk. Answer: spear/spare Last week's challenge: The challenge came from Steve Baggish of Arlington, Mass., the father of the 11-year-old boy who created a previous challenge . Name a boy's name and a girl's name, each in four letters. The names start with the same letter of the...

The Missing Link

Jun 29, 2014

On-air challenge: For each set of three words, find a word that can precede each one to complete a familiar two-word phrase or name. The first word in each set will name an animal. Example: turtle, spring, office. The answer would be box — box turtle, box spring, box office. Last week's challenge: Think of a 10-letter adjective describing certain institutions. Drop three letters from this word, and the remaining seven letters, reading left to right, will name an institution described by this...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8f3XJePYPpo The video game BioShock Infinite received widespread praise for having a rich narrative packed with philosophy when it debuted last year. The game sold millions of copies. But like many other headlining games in the last year, it was also incredibly violent. One critic even called it a "case study in unnecessary violence." Ken Levine, the creative director for the BioShock series, tells NPR's Arun Rath that after BioShock Infinite came out, people...

Oh, You Know The Answer

Jun 22, 2014

On-air challenge: Every answer is a compound word or familiar two-word phrase or title in which each word has OU as its second and third letters. Example: Given "heading to Antarctica," you would say, "Southbound." Next week's challenge: From 11-year-old listener Eli Shear-Baggish of Arlington, Mass. Name a certain trip that contains the letter S. Change the S to a C and rearrange the resulting letters. You'll name the location where this trip often takes place. Where is it? Answer: Safari;...

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