Habs get Gomez from Rangers for Higgins

Scott Gomez

The Montreal Canadiens have acquired centre Scott Gomez, winger Tom Pyatt and defenceman Mike Busto from the New York Rangers in exchange for winger Chris Higgins and defensemen Ryan McDonagh and Pavel Valentenko from the Montreal Canadiens.

Gomez, 29, is coming off a down season for the Rangers, finishing with 58 points, his lowest total since 2002-2003.

A two-time Stanley Cup winner with the New Jersey Devils, Gomez was a blockbuster free agent signing for the Rangers last summer. Gomez is signed through 2013-2014, at a salary cap hit of more than $7.35-million, so he represents a significant investment.

In 706 career games, Gomez has 148 goals, 430 assists and 578 points, adding 81 points in 114 career playoff games.

Higgins, a 26-year-old restricted free agent winger, also struggled in 2008-2009, scoring a career-low 23 points in 57 games as he missed a combined 25 games with hand and groin injuries. Prior to last season, however, Higgins recorded three straight seasons of at least 20 goals and he’ll be a more economical option for the Rangers as he earned $1.7-million last season.

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McFarlane NHL Hockey Figures


X-Men Origins: Wolverine coming to Blu-ray! Plus Figures!

The Coventry Telegraph brings us some news about the upcoming Wolvering Blu-Ray Release…

HUGH JACKMAN’S comic book blockbuster X-Men Origins: Wolverine claws its way on to DVD and Blu-ray later this year.

The film, directed by Gavin Hood, depicts the backstory of Jackman’s metal-clawed mutant prior to the previous X-Men movies.
The cast also included Liev Schreiber as Sabretooth and Danny Huston as William Stryker. Black Eyed Peas frontman Will.i.am played John Wraith, Lynn Collins was Kayla Silverfox and Ryan Reynolds was Wade Wilson. Also in the movie were Taylor Kitsch as Gambit, Dominic Monaghan as Bolt, Daniel Henney as Agent Zero and Kevin Durand as Blob.

The 20th Century Fox movie comes out on DVD and Blu-ray in the UK on October 19, and DVD Active reports that it will include the following:
* Commentary by Director Gavin Hood
* Commentary by Producers Lauren Shuler Donner and Ralph Winter
* The Roots of Wolverine: A Conversation with Stan Lee and Len Wein
* Wolverine Unleashed: The Complete Origins
* Weapon X Mutant Files (in 10 sections introducing the characters)
* The Thrill of the Chase: The Helicopter Sequence
* Ultimate X-Mode
* X Connect
* The Director’s Chair
* Pre-Visualizing Wolverine
* BD-Live (IMDB Feature)
* BD-J (PiP and Quiz)

The film’s recommended pricing is £19.99 for the DVD and £28.99 for the Blu-ray. Box sets containing all three X-Men movies as well as X-Men Origins: Wolverine will also be available, priced at around £29.99 (DVD) and £49.99 (BD).

A Wolverine sequel is planned, along with a spin-off in which Ryan Reynolds’ character becomes the masked mercenary Deadpool from the comic books.

Other new films are also in the pipeline for the franchise: X-Men Origins: Magneto would centre on the backstory of the archvillain played by Ian McKellen in the previous movies while X-Men: First Class would depict the early years of Xavier’s school, with younger versions of Cyclops, Jean Grey, Storm, Beast and other characters.

It has not yet been revealed which X-Men adventure will be next for the big screen. Magneto screenwriter David Goyer said Fox studio executives were considering which project to proceed with next.

But there’s even more good news for fans of both Wolverine and arch-nemesis Sabretooth: we’ve still got the CmdStore EXCLUSIVE Sabretooth figure up for pre-order. And fighting against him, we’ve also got a pre-order for the brand new brown-suited Wolverine figure. They ship in August, but they’ll also be available when we hit the Toronto Fan Expo in August! Check out the collection on the website and be sure to stay tuned for more news about our convention trip!

EA Games: MySims Racing and the New Sims 3 Patch!

Here’s some news for Sims fans! First we’ve got a look at a brand new spin-off, and then a long-awaited update (okay, not VERY long…) for the Sims 3!

Bill O’Keefe reviews MySims Racing for KansasCity.com. . .

MySims Racing
Reviewed for: Nintendo Wii
Alternate version available for: Nintendo DS
From: EA
ESRB Rating: Everyone (comic mischief)

When EA started spinning off “The Sims” beyond its original intentions, jokes invariably were made about when, not if, the brand would succumb to its inevitable kart racer incarnation.

All joking aside, now we know.

But while “MySims Racing” most assuredly owes no small thanks to “Mario Kart” for its existence, it sidesteps most of the pratfalls that sank so many “Kart” rip-offs over the years. More importantly, it adds a few things to the experience that not only justify the franchise’s move into this arena, but also give the game some legs even “Mario Kart Wii” lacks.

“Racing” leaves little to chance in terms of its basic racing component, which looks like “Kart,” moves like “Kart” and follows the same blueprint in terms of controls, drifting techniques and the implementation of power-ups on the track. Like “Kart’s” Wii incarnation, “Racing” lets you choose between multiple control schemes, supporting motion steering with the Wii remote and more traditional play via the Gamecube controller and Classic or nunchuck attachments.

Generally, it does a sufficient job of mimicry. The handling is a touch more unwieldy than in “Kart,” but “Racing’s” drift mechanic compensates adequately with a little practice. The power-ups are similarly mixed: Some are clever and funny, while others feel either like useless throwaways or less effective imitations of “Kart’s” more iconic offerings.

“Racing’s” lone tweak to the formula – collectable on-track gems that build up your cart’s turbo capability – isn’t particularly ingenious in the realm of racing games. But those gems’ secondary purpose – as off-track currency – is a bit more interesting, and it opens the door for those aforementioned new ideas.

As any “Sims”-branded game should, “Racing” allows you to design your character, which goes a long way toward mitigating the game’s lack of identity when compared to kart racers that are stocked with familiar mascot characters. But “Racing” also lets you design and modify three carts – normal, large and toy-sized – with upgrades, accessories and paint/decal jobs. The customization tools can’t hold a candle to the likes of “Need For Speed” or “Forza,” but they fulfill their purpose in giving “Racing” enough tools to keep the experience reasonably fresh and tailor it to individual player tastes. They also, along with the surprising presence of a nonsensical but rather entertaining storyline, give the game a steady stream of rewards to achieve beyond the usual cup trophies “Kart” trots out game after game.

“Racing” falls back to earth with its multiplayer (four players, offline only), which doesn’t even attempt to match “Kart’s” exquisite online component. The four-player splitscreen works fine, though, and it serves as a nice alternative to (though not necessarily a replacement for) “Kart” when a change of tracks and power-ups is in order.

And then, in even better knews, Sims 3 players will be pleased to know that the new patch has arrived to fix some of the game’s pesky little issues. From GamersHell.com. . .

Electronic Arts has issued a new patch for The Sims 3, updating to v1.2.7 the latest installment in The Sims series developed by Electronic Arts Redwood Shores. Thanks: The Patches Scrolls. The Sims 3 allows you to immerse your unique Sims in an open living neighborhood right outside their door. The initial feature-set unveiled includes the new seamless, open neighborhood, new Create A Sim, new realistic personalities and new unlimited customization. The new seamless neighborhood architecture allows your Sims to roam freely around the neighborhood and visit their loved one and friends or foes.

Download the Sims 3 patch here

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New Bakugan Vestoria Releases Part 2

Check it out….More New Bakugan Releases (Part 2)

Here are some other bakugan articles you might be interested in:

What is Bakugan?

How to Play Bakugan (with YouTube Instructions)

FAQ Bakguan (Frequently Asked Questions)

What size Bakugan are best?

Names of Bakugan (Download High Quality Free Poster)

How to Repair your Bakugan?

Online Bakugan Video Games are Here?

My Favorite Bakugan ball is…

Fake and Custom Bakugans

Upcoming Bakugan Movie

BakuSwap Bakugan Collection Part 1

BakuSwap Bakugan Collection Part 2

BakuSwap Bakugan Collection Part 3

BakuSwap Bakugan Collection Part 4

BakuClear Bakugan Collection Part 1

New from Hot Toys: Hellboy, Edward Scissorhands and The Joker

As a BIG fan of both Mike Mignola and Guillermo Del Toro, I fell in love with the Hellboy movies and, naturally, the figures. Del Toro’s work has led to some really cool aesthetic choices in the toys and they’re on display in the Sideshow figures, the Mezco figures and especially the new figure (above) from Sideshow and Hot Toys. Standing 12” tall, the Hot Toys Hellboy features an amazing likeness to Ron Perlman’s portrayal of the demonic hero and comes with a ton of film-accurate accessories and 28 points of articulation. It’s a great showpiece for any fan and is already in-stock and orderable!

The massive success of The Dark Knight and the tragic loss of actor Heath Ledger has created a huge demand for memorabilia from the film. And now, Hot Toys has created a new Joker figure capturing his look from one scene in the film: The Gotham City Police Joker. With his makeup off and his scars on display, the Joker blends into the memorial service crowd in a chaotic bid to eliminate Gotham’s mayor. It was a jarring moment to see the Clown Prince of Crime stripped bare, yet with all the malice, and has been faithfully reproduced here. It doesn’t ship until December, but you can pre-order now to make sure you get yours.

Now available and in-stock, check out this Hot Toys Edward Scissorhands. From the film that truly made both Tim Burton and Johnny Depp comes a 12” rendering of the eponymous young man. In his eyes is all the sorrow and beauty of the film, and in his body all the exquisite detail that gave the movie its signature look, straight from the mind of Burton. For fans of the film, it’s an amazing addition to their collection.

The Mythbusters at the San Diego Comic Con!

Last weekend, during the Montreal Fringe Festival, I spent a lot of time downtown around St. Lawrence, seeing the sights and people-watching between shows. And one such day, I was standing outside the metro looking at the Bixi bikes when I noticed that the man standing there looked uncannily like Adam Savage of the Mythbusters. Normally I would have dismissed it, but even as he and his wife rode off, I couldn’t deny that it was a freaky resemblance if it wasn’t him.

So you can imagine my surprise and disappointment (I didn’t say anything to him!) when I checked his Twitter and discovered that he was not only in Montreal but had indeed been right there. Naturally, as a big fan of Mythbusters, I felt like an idiot and wished I had gone up and at least said ‘hello’. But fortunately, it seems as though I have not missed my only chance at seeing Adam Savage and the gang, because there’s some great news from from Pop Culture Zoo. . .

It’s safe to say that one of the most anticipated panels at Comic-Con is the Mythbusters appearance on Saturday night. They packed out one of the large rooms last year, so queue up early for their July 25th panel, which starts at 7:15. This year you can look forward to not only seeing Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage, but also Tory Belleci and Grant Imahara. All four guys will be sharing behind the scenes stories, give some sneak peeks of upcoming myths and answer your questions. On hand to moderate the panel will be astronomer and Discover magazine blogger Phil Plait. If you’ve ever read his blog Bad Astronomy then you know he’s a perfect fit to join in on with the guys.

Mythbusters airs Wednesdays at 9:00PM on Discovery Channel.

The Mythbusters Comic-Con panel is July 25 at 7:15-8:15 PM, Room 6BCF. See you there!

And for another little tidbit concerning Adam Savage’s Montreal trip, check out the tale of his $11,000 phone bill!

Best Transformers – Optimus Prime

Best Transformers

Generation 1

Optimus Prime is a character in the Transformers universe. He is the commander of the Autobots, a faction of heroic Transformers from the planet Cybertron who wage their battles against the evil forces of the Decepticons for control of their homeworld, and by extension, peace in the universe. Optimus Prime is depicted as a heroic, brave and compassionate character who puts all his talent to use to improve the world around him. Optimus has a strong sense of justice and righteousness, and has dedicated himself to the protection of all life, particularly the inhabitants of Earth; he will battle his foes with unyielding resolve to uphold this belief. He always seems to wear a mask over his mouth.

The original Optimus Prime transforms into a cab over semi truck. The truck’s cab transforms into the robot mode of Prime himself, with vast strength and armed with a laser rifle. Contained within his chest is the mystic talisman known as the Autobot Matrix of Leadership (or Creation Matrix, depending on the continuity), carried by all Autobot leaders and passed down through the ages. The comic book continuities tend to claim that Optimus’ direct predecessor as Prime and thus bearer of the Matrix was Sentinel Prime, a fact which is part of the Dreamwave comics canon. In the cartoon continuity, it is unknown who Optimus inherited the talisman from, as he is already named as a Prime when Alpha Trion rebuilds him from his former self, which appears to indicate that Alpha Trion may have given Prime the Matrix at that point in time just after the transformation of Orion Pax into Optimus Prime. This change is depicted in the episode War Dawn. The truck’s trailer disconnects and transforms into the Combat Deck, a mobile battle-station/command headquarters with an “Auto-Launcher” robot armed with assorted artillery and beam weapons. It can also serve as a radio antenna for battlefield communications between the Autobots. The Combat Deck can launch Prime’s third component, Roller, a mobile scout buggy that can easily slip behind enemy lines. Optimus’ senses are tied into Roller’s, and can perceive what Roller does. Injury to one component is felt by each of the others, and while Prime could survive the destruction of either, despite the slight degree of autonomy they possess, the Combat Deck and Roller would not be able to survive without him.

Additional powers included (somewhat inconsistently) in the animated series and comics are short-range optic blasts, holographic map projections, a palm mounted, triangle-shaped repulsor projector (similar in function to the Marvel Character Iron Man) and deployable hydro-foils designed by Wheeljack which allowed Prime and the other Autobots to traverse bodies of water with ease. One of Prime’s more memorable[who?] abilities from the animated series was the ability to retract his right hand and replace it with a glowing energon axe; although used only once, the axe proved popular enough to be rendered in toy form several times in recent years, and made an appearance in the Dreamwave Productions and Devil’s Due Publishing comic series. In the 2007 live action feature film it appeared as a glowing metallic broadsword.

Across the assorted continuities of the original Transformers universe, there have been various interpretations of Optimus Prime. One of Prime’s most notable characteristics in any form was his adamant commitment to leadership by example, and avoidance of any hypocrisy in his command, but beyond this, the animated series leaned towards Optimus Prime as a straightforward, wise and essentially upbeat battlefield general. The Marvel Comics series, on the other hand, in addition to these more obvious characteristics, suggested a Prime secretly plagued by self-doubt and, more importantly, a conflicted sense of pacifism that often made him an extremely reluctant warrior. It was occasionally implied that the conflict with the Decepticons lasted as long as it did primarily because of his unwillingness to take a more aggressive stance.

The animated series revealed other minor details about Optimus Prime’s personality and personal life – for example, his dislike of rap music (”Blaster Blues” and “Quest for Survival”), which set him at odds with music-loving characters like Blaster and Jazz. Prime also enjoys televised sports, most notably basketball which he even plays (”The Master Builder”), as well as setting up a basketball court outside the Ark. Though Prime’s personality is like that of a human man age 40-50, he is not above watching afternoon soap operas (in the episode “Prime Target”, he is heard groaning out loud when the soap opera he is watching with the other Transformers gets interrupted for a news report).

Optimus Prime Generation 1

Generation 2

An undisclosed period of time later, at the beginning of the Transformers: Generation 2 comic book sequel series, Prime was restored to a form resembling his original body, and he and the Transformers found themselves caught in the schemes of a “second generation” of Cybertronians led by the icy Jhiaxus, who were colonizing and cyber-forming other worlds. Plagued by nightmarish visions of a life-destroying entity called “the Swarm,” Prime looked into Cybertron’s past and discovered that Jhiaxus and his kind were the result of further unintentional Transformer reproduction, their nature and intent distilled to the purest, most unemotional form of conquest, and that the Swarm was the by-product of this process. Entering into an alliance with the recreated Megatron’s Decepticons to combat the Swarm and Jhiaxus, Prime was consumed by the abomination and destroyed, but at the last moment, unleashed the energies of the Matrix into the Swarm, purifying it. In parting, the Swarm recreated Prime in a new form, (based on his “Hero” toy), and he and Megatron set out to lead the united Transformers and Decepticons into a new age.

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Transformers Movie

Transformers Leader ClassFrom Hasbro, we’ve got the new Deluxe Class Transformers 2 movie toys. Included in the collection are standards like Bumblebee (Chevy Camaro), Soundwave (a Satellite) and Arcee segment Chromia (Motorcycle) and they’re joined by Mudflap (Chevrolet Trax), Skids (Chevrolet Beat) and many more. Standing about 6” tall, they’re the first of three classes of Transformers movie Toys and the smallest. But don’t be fooled! Even at 6 inches, these Transformers figures transition smoothly from vehicle to robot mode and make a great addition to any Revenge of the Fallen collection.