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April 2013

March 2013 Newsbytes archive

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Last month’s contributors include crossaffliction, Equivamp, Fred, GreenReaper, Higgs Raccoon, Patch Packrat, Rakuen Growlithe, RingtailedFox and Sonious.

FBA accepting character submissions for 2013 Draft

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The Furry Basketball Association is accepting character submissions for the 2013 FBA Draft.

FBA logoAll fans are invited to submit new characters, regardless of participation level in the FBA or knowledge of basketball. With a fresh emphasis on backstories, submissions no longer require details regarding the stats or playing style of the submitted characters. There is no limit to how many characters may be submitted this year by a contributor.

Submissions will remain open until May 1, or until 100 are received, whichever comes later. Players will be considered for participation in the 2013 FBA Draft, when teams will select new players to join them for the league's 5th season. The 2013-2014 season begins October 31.

Review: 'An Army of Frogs: A Kulipari Novel', by Trevor Pryce

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (4 votes)

An Army of FrogsThis is one of those officially-Young Adult books (recommended age: 10 to 18) that adults should enjoy equally. Advance reviews are comparing it favorably with Jacques’ Redwall books and “Hunter’s” Warriors books about the talking cat clans.

With the stealth of a warrior, Darrel hopped along a wide branch, tracking the two scouts below. A waterfall roared in the distance, and a tasty-looking fig wasp flitted past.
Darrel ignored a pang of hunger, resisting the urge to shoot his tongue at the wasp for a quick snack.
Dinner could wait until he’d dealt with the enemy. (p. 1)

An Army of Frogs gets off to a rousing start. The back-cover blurb is a good summary:

Darrel, a young frog, dreams of joining the Kulipari, an elite squad of poisonous frog warriors sworn to defend the Amphibilands. Unfortunately, Darrel’s dream is impossible, because he isn’t a poisonous frog and no one’s seen the Kulipari since the last scorpion war, long ago. Anyway, now the frogs’ homeland is protected by the turtle king’s magic. So it no longer needs defending – or does it?

Enter the spider queen, a powerful dreamcaster capable of destroying the turtle king’s protective spell. She and her ally Lord Marmoo, leader of a vicious army of scorpions, are bent on conquering the frogs’ lush homeland. The frogs have never been more vulnerable. Can Daryl save the day and become the warrior of his dreams?

“An Army of Frogs: A Kulipari Novel”, by Trevor Pryce with Joel Naftali. Illustrated by Sanford Greene. NYC, Abrams/Amulet Books, May 2013, hardcover $15.95 ([6+] 272 [+6] pages).

Animation: Pixar to follow 'Finding Nemo' with 'Finding Dory'

Your rating: None Average: 3.7 (3 votes)

DoryThe Cartoon Brew reports that Ellen DeGeneres, who voiced Dory, the regal blue tang fish with short-term memory loss in Pixar’s 2003 Finding Nemo, has announced that Pixar has asked her to reprise her role in the forthcoming sequel, Finding Dory. It will also be directed by Andrew Stanton, who directed Finding Nemo. Its tentative release date is November 25, 2015.

Finding Nemo is Pixar’s #2 grosser, behind only Toy Story 3.

First-quarter 2013 furry media roundup

Your rating: None Average: 3.5 (2 votes)

For those who missed out on the news over the last three months, here's a quick roundup.

2013 opened with a feature on the business of fursuit-making, as detailed by Snap E. Tiger.

Further Confusion 2013 garnered some coverage, including a Kotaku contributor's weekend at a furry convention – which started out with party-hopping, followed by a fursuit parade (admittedly, the experience for many FC attendees). The author reached the [adjective][species] statistics panel before returning to the party floor . . . and then, the dance floor.

SanJose.com also provided coverage of FC, albeit limited to an apparently remote Q&A session with the con's media representative, Chairo. The brief piece was fact-filled, yet in comparison with Kotaku did not venture deeply into the motivations of those attending.

Sneaking in at the end of the month was a cover piece in Nashville LGBT monthly Out & About (subtitled "It's not all about sex in fur suits"), and a photo-heavy article of the "everyday lives of furries at home", featuring the furry photography of Tom Broadbent. [tip: HappyWulf]

Upcoming furry comics for May 2013 (Previews and Marvel Previews)

Your rating: None Average: 2.7 (3 votes)

Previews for May featured an interview with Stan Sakai; he’s finishing up 47 Ronin soon and looking forward to getting back to Usagi Yojimbo. Before that, though, he mentions that he wants to do a non-canonical mini-series featuring the ronin rabbit versus the Martians from The War of the Worlds. So that’s something to look forward to.

Also, remember Free Comic Book Day is Saturday, May 4.

Review: 'The Goldenlea', by Rose LaCroix

Your rating: None Average: 4 (1 vote)

The GoldenleaFaol Carric[k] was born to rule, inheriting the dukedom upon the passing of his father. Immediately tested by the conspiracy of the usurper Virgil Dol, Faol will need to prove his worth as a leader, a fighter, and a strategist if he is to survive—much less regain his place as the rightful ruler of the Goldenlea. (publisher’s blurb)

Faol Carrick is a wolf, Duke Ignis was a wolf, Balthasar Viverra is a genet; and we are off and running in a Medievalish anthropomorphic adventure of treachery and redemption among the nobility.

This title is a work of anthropomorphic fiction for adult readers only. (publisher’s advisory)

FurPlanet Productions, January 2013, trade paperback $19.95 (335 pages; on Amazon).
Illustrated by Kobi LaCroix.

Review: ‘Hank the Cowdog and the Case of the Dinosaur Birds’, by John R. Erickson

Your rating: None Average: 3 (1 vote)

Hank the Cowdog and the Case of the Dinosaur BirdsHank the Cowdog and the Case of the Dinosaur Birds is number 54 in John R. Erickson’s long running series of short novels for children featuring the misadventures of Hank the Cowdog, Head of Ranch Security.

The books are published by Erickson’s own Maverick Books, based out of his hometown of Perryton, Texas. The books are not unknown outside the area; but in the surrounding region, very few children grow up without encountering Hank and his humorous stories. The realistic depiction of life on a Texas cattle ranch as seen through the eyes of a vainglorious but not particularly bright ranch dog has also garnered many adult fans in the region.

The books feature illustrations by Gerald R. Holmes. However, this review is based on the audiobook version of the story, featuring Erickson’s reading. Erickson is a talented voice actor; the story is presented more like a radio play than a straight recitation, with Erickson playing all parts: human and animal, male and female, each distinctive and memorable. Quite a few fans, and this reviewer, feel that you haven’t experienced Hank the Cowdog until you have heard one of the audiobooks.

“Hank the Cowdog and the Case of the Dinosaur Birds”, by John R. Erickson. Illustrated by Gerald R. Holmes. Maverick Books Inc., 2009, paperback $4.99, CD audio book $17.99, paperback/CD combo pack $19.99, online audio $9.95.

Foxes or wolves?

Foxes
53% (27 votes)
Wolves
47% (24 votes)
Votes: 51

Anthropomorphic game 'Gundog' enters beta-test phase

Your rating: None Average: 2 (1 vote)

OGPlanet, a publisher of free-to-play, massively-multiplayer-online, downloadable PC games, has announced that their new game Gundog has entered its beta-test phase.
Gundog game logo and characters
In Gundog, a third-person shooter with card-collection elements, teams of anthropomorphic canines fight in a World-War scenario. The game involves six different character classes, and two rival camps (Union and Empire). The beta-test phase runs over April 4-8.

Animation: New Hanna-Barbera character art on display

Your rating: None Average: 2 (1 vote)

This is extremely short notice, but this Saturday (6-10PM) the Van Eaton Galleries in the Sherman Oaks suburb of Los Angeles are holding the opening reception for The HB Show, “a group art show tribute to Hanna-Barbera” of paintings by numerous artists including some of HB’s former staff. The paintings are mostly of HB’s human characters such as the Flintstones and Penelope Pitstop, but there are some of Yakky Doodle, Scooby-Doo, Huckleberry Hound, Yogi Bear, and H-B's other anthropomorphic animal characters.

More importantly, the whole art show/auction is online. You can still see it all and bid on unsold paintings.

The HB Show will be up at the Van Eaton Galleries, 13613 Ventura Boulevard, Sherman Oaks, Calif. 91423, (800) 599-3693, until April 20 (Adolf Hitler’s birthday! Is this significant?), so if you can get there, you can still see it all even after the art auction. And, of course, the Van Eaton Galleries have other animation goodies on display.

Full Steam ahead for furry video games

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (6 votes)

Steam LogoNormally, damp or wet fur isn't a pleasant thought or smell, but in this case, it's a very good thing! Five upcoming furry-themed video games have been found on Steam's Greenlight Program, and are given previews in this roundup.

Usagi Yojimbo: Way of the Ronin

Currently available for iOS devices and Google Android and coming soon to Windows and Mac OS X via Steam, Usagi Yojimbo: Way of the Ronin is the first appearance of the lapine in a video game since his adventures on the Commodore 64, back in 1988 — 25 years ago (at the time this story was posted)! This game by Happy Giant is based on the classic comic book series by Stan Sakai. Usagi Yojimbo is renowned for his appearances in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comics and television series. In the game, you act as Miyamoto Usagi, the rabbit warrior, on an epic journey to restore order to the land of feudal-era Japan, with only your trusted sword Grasscutter to assist you. In the game, you will battle over fifty different types of enemies, with three boss monsters from the comics.