Thursday, 6 December 2012

Max Overload! UK Sega Comics beyond S.T.C!

What a cool thing to stumble upon. Toejam & Earl along with it's sequel Panic on Funkotron were re-released on the Playstation network and Xbox Live Arcade, and you should grab them, because they are excellent ports much like the other recent Sega Vintage Collection games, with awesome remix music on the menus, online co-op and challenges with leaderboards.

Anyway, these re-releases made me go do a search on Ebay for any Toejam and earl stuff I can find. I already have a rather awesome large badge of them, and own the two original Mega Drive games of course, but I also saw this magazine called Max Overload.

Apparently this Dark Horse joint only lasted for two issues in 1994, and so far no one has obtained a copy of the second issue. Thankfully, excellent comic book blog TwoHeaded Thingies has the first issue and has scanned the juiciest parts of the magazine...comic strips!

This was a a video game magazine with bonus comics, so like Sonic the Comic but with more magazine-y stuff like reviews. It was not strictly a Sega magazine, but two out of the four comics featured were based on Sega franchises, and the other two were also based on games well known on the Sega systems. Check out what those were after the jump!

...and one of them is Toejam & Earl! See where I was going with this now? Of course you probably could tell on the front cover at the top of the article but pfffft. Illustrated by Woodrow Phoneix, who was also responsible for the art in S.T.C's Ecco the Dolphin comic and written by Anne Caulfield, this 8 page strip is a real treat! Check out the whole story at TwoHeaded Thingies article about it! It includes a lot of the enemies/humans/whatnot that were in the first game, and they even put game hints and cheats on the edges of the pages! So what was the other Sega franchise that got the comic treatment?

Erm...Greendog. Yeah, remember that dud? It was not a particularly brilliant or memorable game was it? Still, Decap Attack was hardly a classic game either (despite it's amazing soundtrack) yet that games comic was fantastic. The same applies to this one: the comic is much better than the game really! This one is funnily enough also illustrated by someone that worked on Sonic the Comic: Ed Hillyer, who was one of the earliest artists on the Sonic strips, including the infamous 'Sonic the Human' story. This story was written by Ian Carney. Check out this comic in it's entirely here.

The other two strips included in the first issue are based on Chuck Rock, the caveman platformer by  series that was more or less every Sega system at the time, and Lemmings, the classic puzzle game which of course we all know was on EVERYTHING. The art is these stories are stunning so even if they are not 100% Sega you should defiantly check them both out.


TwoHeadedBoy said...

Cheers for the plug, and thanks for following as well!

I'm in disagreement on Decap Attack, mind - I'd put that in the Top Five Games Of All Time, personally.

Also, only realized now how familiar Greendog's face is - Sonic the Human! Classic, that one.

The GagaMan(n) said...

I really dig Decap Attack too, but I know it's not really considered a classic by most people, even Nigel Kitching told me at Summer of Sonic that he thought the game wasn't anything special. It's an acquired taste for many, it seems.

I recognized the art style of the Greendog comic from Sonic the Human almost instantly, so I had to look it up.

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