Video Game Homes Built With LEGO Bricks!

Written by Randy Nelson of Movoto Real Estate

15 Famous Video Game Houses Built With LEGO Bricks

From Bowser’s Castle to Croft Manor, here’s the lowdown on the number of bricks and amount of cash you’d need to build life size versions of some of gaming’s most beloved homes.

This time last year, Movoto figured out how to bring four of our absolute favorite things together on the Movoto Real Estate Blog: Real estate, math, building things, and video games.

They combined those elements to produce a calculator that tells you how many blocks from the Game Boy version of “Tetris” it would take to build your house. It was actually inspired by an earlier calculator they made based on one of their other big hobbies: LEGO. You put in your house size, and it spits out the number of LEGO bricks you’d need to replicate it.

Recently, while playing the “LEGO Movie” game, a thought occurred to them: How could they combine their LEGO obsession with video games and houses? The results are below: 15 of our past video game property evaluations calculated in terms of their LEGO composition, along with their “real world” prices and cost in LEGO bricks. We think it’s pretty cool, and hope you agree.

1. Bowser’s Castle — Super Mario Bros. 3

Video Game Houses In LEGO
Number of LEGO Bricks: 306,247,937
Square Footage: 2,895
Property Value: $455,000
LEGO Building Cost: $30,624,794
This was their very first video game property evaluation, produced way back in 2012. Movoto decided to go with Bowser’s base of operations from “Super Mario Bros. 3” rather than the first game simply because we’d spent so much more time trying to master it in our youths. Aw, who are we kidding, we’re still trying to perfect our speed run through that game. At least now we know we could build a life-size version with “only” 306,247,937 LEGO bricks for a real challenge if we wanted—it’d just require a lot of actual gold coins.

VALIANT Reveals World’s Largest MEGA-COVER for ARMOR HUNTERS – Limited to Six Participating Retailers!

The summer’s biggest crossover event is about to get even bigger!
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April 24, 2014/New York, NY - Valiant is proud to announce the ARMOR HUNTERS 18-PART MEGA-COVER – a limited edition, one-of-a-kind interlocking cover divided across all 18 issues of ARMOR HUNTERS, this summer’s hotly anticipated crossover event featuring X-O Manowar, Bloodshot, the Unity team, and many more of Valiant’s most formidable heroes.Featuring a colossal, four foot tall by two-and-half foot wide cover image by heat-seeking rising star Diego Bernard (X-O ManowarRed Lanterns), the ARMOR HUNTERS 18-PART MEGA-COVER is the biggest comic book cover ever attempted in the history of the medium, and will span all issues of the ARMOR HUNTERS crossover event beginning this June – ARMOR HUNTERS #1-4UNITY #8-11X-O MANOWAR #26-29ARMOR HUNTERS: BLOODSHOT #1-3, and ARMOR HUNTERS: HARBINGER #1-3.

Spotlighting each of Valiant’s greatest heroes – and a few select classified recruits – as they combat the ARMOR HUNTERS‘ brutal invasion of Earth in search of the X-O Manowar armor, this is the only place to witness the true size and scale of the Hunters’ deadliest asset – the gigantic alien robot simply called GIN-GR.

“As soon as we saw Clayton Crain’s amazing character designs for GIN-GR, and the rest of the Armor Hunters, we knew that this was going to be an enemy and a crossover unlike anything else in comics. But we also wanted to present it in an equally bold manner on the shelf. When it comes to the biggest story that Valiant has attempted to date, what could be more appropriate than the world’s biggest cover?” said Valiant Publisher Fred Pierce.

IMAGE COMICS: AN EXTRAORDINARY ODDLY NORMAL NEW SERIES DEBUT

An all-ages series about a half-witch and her very unusual family

oddly normalApril 24, 2014/Berkeley, Calif. - Image Comics is pleased to announce the launch of cartoonist Otis Frampton’s charming all-ages ongoing fantasy series, ODDLY NORMAL, coming this Fall.

Meet Oddly Normal, a ten-year-old girl with pointed ears and green hair—a half-witch who will be the first to tell you that having a mother who hails from a magical land called Fignation and a father native to the mortal realm doesn’t make it easy to make friends at school, to say the least! On her birthday, she blows out her cake’s candles and makes an impulsive and disastrous wish. Now, Oddly must travel into the magical world of Fignation to uncover the mystery of her parents’ disappearance. Join Oddly as she navigates a strange new school, monstrous bullies, and Evil itself on an unforgettable fantasy adventure through the vibrant world of Fignation in ODDLY NORMAL.

“I’m absolutely thrilled that Oddly Normal will be published by Image Comics,” said Frampton. “It’s a twenty-year dream-come-true to have a creator-owned book at the company that made me want to make comics professionally. When I sent out submissions for this book, Image was my ‘never gonna happen, but I gotta take the shot’ company. I couldn’t be happier with how that long-shot pitch turned out!”

Max Brooks’ Extinction Parade Optioned by Legendary for an Original Television Series

ExtinctionParade1April 23, 2014

Max Brooks and Avatar Press have announced Legendary Television and Digital optioned the New York Times Bestselling Author Brooks’ Extinction Parade as an original property for development as a new television series.  Brooks is closely tied to the development of the project and will be writing the Pilot episode.

“I only brought the idea to one company, Legendary, because they do the kind of quality work of which any writer would be proud.” stated Brooks.

“Max Brooks is a visionary with an incredible ability to tell stories that deliver a fresh approach to the horrors that haunt our nightmares.  His work on Extinction Parade has been a stunningly rich tapestry of cultures in decline and a biting indictment of the perils of privilege.  It will make the perfect television series to appeal to fans who have until now settled for thinly veiled soap operas parading as horror,” said William Christensen, Publisher of Avatar Press. 

Legendary is the studio behind recent blockbuster film 300: Rise of an Empire and the upcoming release of Godzilla this spring.  Their slate of film projects has firmly targeted the pop culture and comic book reading community and provided some of the best blockbuster genre movies ever created.  They bring the ideal approach to adapting a hit property like Extinction Parade into a successful television series.

Beware the Children of the Snow

Review by Amanda Pampuro

“I just drove ten hours in whiteout conditions—if you think I’m turning around just because some kids told me to…”

sheltered-1When I first saw Ed Brisson’s Sheltered, I thought, that it was cool, kind of like Lord of the Flies meets Hoarders. Like the thought of an actual impending apocalypse however, I didn’t take Sheltered seriously until issue #6.

Sheltered shows what happens when you raise your kids on survivalist doctrine, giving them nuclear winter for breakfast and earthquakes for dinner—they grow up believing it. In the first issue, a group of survivalists and the children gather at Safe Haven, the bunker they had been stocking full of food and weapons for an impending global disaster. Then Lucas, a charismatic—and psychopathic? fearless? brave?—youth persuades the other children that they need to kill all of the adults or there won’t be enough supplies to go around. After the slaughter, when destruction does not arrive, Lucas struggles to maintain his now-questionable leadership.

Safe Heaven’s self-contained drama is interrupted at the end of issue #5 when a mysterious van pulls up to the fence, and a man steps out, asking Lucas to speak to his parents.

All because of Her!

Review by Amanda Pampuro

In 1973, Hilly Krystal opened CBGBs in New York because he thought country music was about to become a very big thing—“and it did,” he reflected fifty years later, “in Memphis.” Sometimes perfectly good ideas don’t work out because they were a few states too north or a few minutes too late.

AlexAda-01-0bUnfortunately for Jonathan Luna and Sarah Vaughn’s comic series Alex and Ada, Spike Jones made Her. Taking place after artificial intelligence proved its sentience, after the robot rights riots, hell even after society thought it weird to date a computer, Her shows the relationship between Theodore and Samantha, (Joaquin Phoenix and Scarlet Johanson), a writer and an operating system. Oddly enough, it doesn’t even matter that Samantha exists without a body. As all of the traditional AI conflicts were passed over, I awaited in cynical suspense, wondering what’s going to go wrong? This is too perfect to work. While it skips over the evils of being human, that humans are natural slave masters, that they are violent and fearful, Her showcases another side of what it is to be human: with actual sincerity and strangely little corn, Her captures the experience of being in love.

Aspen Comics’ & Siya Oum’s Lola XOXO #1 Review

Review by John Barrie

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When I first saw the preview for Lola XOXO, the new Aspen Comics title by Siya Oum, I was worried.  I don’t know what percentage of the non-superhero comic book market has to do with post-apocalyptic worlds, but I would assume it’s a large one.  With the shelves crowded by everything from your standard zombie fare like The Walking Dead to the beautiful nightmare of Jeff Lemire’s only recently ended Sweet Tooth, as well as classics like Y! The Last Man, there is plenty to choose from if you are looking to envision the end of the world.  Lola couldn’t merely be serviceable….it needed to be good.

Any doubts I had were gone as soon as I got past the brief bit of backstory explaining how Lola was separated from her family during the crisis.  As soon as the story shifted from flashback to the present, I was able to see Oum’s greatest strength—not her gorgeous art, but world building.  What I enjoy most about Lola XOXO is that Earth after the collapse of civilization isn’t some grimy, dark, disease infested world.  Well, it is grimy and dark, but that isn’t all that it is.  Earth-based dystopias that I’ve seen in popular fiction tend to be underpopulated and lacking in fun, but from fruit vendors out in the street to a bar where you can buy moonshine with a handful of bullets, the comic seemed to capture the same blend of futurism and old west style that made the world of Firefly so intriguing.   But don’t be mistaken—while the world may have had a similar vibe to the outer planets in Whedon’s seminal show, the voice here is completely Oum’s own.  Lola XOXO may use some familiar tropes of the end-of-the-world genre, but the author is more than capable of turning those ingredients into something that—while familiar—you haven’t quite had before. 

TABLE-TOP GAME DAY: NATIONS

Written by Zeb Larson


Nations was a game that I had heard a lot about before I finally had a chance to play it. I’m one of those guys who keeps Boardgamegeek open in the background at work, mostly so I can read reviews of games I haven’t played and scroll for trades I might be interested in. It first popped up for me a few years ago when I passed up an opportunity to playtest it, an opportunity I’ve since come to regret. After finally having gotten to play this game, I can report that I liked it, although I’m not wild about it.

For those who haven’t read up on the game, Nations is a 1 to 5 player game which simulates the passage of history for several ancient powers. Players take on one of five different states: Greece, Rome, Persia, Egypt or China. The game is played through four different historical eras: Antiquity, Medieval, Renaissance and Industrial, each of which last for two phases. Players can build up strong militaries, develop sophisticated cultures, conquer colonies and build wonders to accrue victory points. At the end of the game, whoever has the most victory points is the winner. Gameplay integrates some aspects of worker placement and some aspects of card drafting, which I’ll run through in a few paragraphs.

NEW BATTLE ROYALE Releases From VIZ MEDIA’S HAIKASORU Imprint CELEBRATE The 15th ANNIVERSARY Of The Riveting Novel!

BATTLE ROYALE: REMASTERED Novel Features A New Translation While The BATTLE ROYALE SLAM BOOK Explores The Novel’s Tremendous Impact On Pop Culture

BattleRoyale-RemasteredhaikasoruSan Francisco, CA, April 2, 2014 – VIZ Media’s Haikasoru literary imprint commemorates the 15th Anniversary of the original debut of one of the most controversial works of modern Japanese literary fiction with the release of BATTLE ROYALE: REMASTERED and the BATTLE ROYALE SLAM BOOK: Essays on the Cult Classic Novel by Koushun Takami. BATTLE ROYALE: REMASTERED features a brand new translation of the smash hit near-future dystopian thriller along with new cover art by Tomer Hanuka and an afterword by author Koushun Takami. The BATTLE ROYALE SLAM BOOK presents an insightful collection of essays by some of the most important writers of popular fiction on the impact of the novel, related films and manga series on pop culture and the controversy and continuing social debate that has surrounded BATTLE ROYALE ever since its release.

BATTLE ROYALE: REMASTERED is available now from Haikasoru as a print-only release for $16.99 U.S./ $19.99 CAN, while the BATTLE ROYALE SLAM BOOK is offered in print for $14.99 U.S./$16.99 CAN, as well as an eBook edition for $7.99 (U.S. / CAN) for the Amazon Kindle, Apple’s iBooks Store, Barnes & Noble’s Nook Book Store, and the Kobo eBooks Store.

Haikasoru publishes some of the most compelling contemporary Japanese science fiction and fantasy stories for English-speaking audiences, and is the first imprint based in the U.S. dedicated to Japanese science fiction and fantasy in translation.

BATTLE ROYALE: REMASTERED, by Koushun Takami • MSRP: $16.99 U.S. / $19.99 CAN • Available Now!

Koushun Takami’s notorious high-octane thriller is based on an irresistible premise: a class of junior high school students is taken to a deserted island where, as part of a ruthless authoritarian program, they are provided arms and forced to kill one another until only one survivor is left standing. Criticized as violent exploitation when first published in Japan—where it then proceeded to become a runaway best seller—Battle Royale is a Lord of the Flies for the 21st century, a potent allegory of what it means to be young and (barely) alive in a dog-eat-dog world. Made into a controversial hit movie of the same name, Battle Royale is already a contemporary Japanese pulp classic, now available in a new English-language translation.

BATTLE ROYALE SLAM BOOK: Essays on the Cult Classic Novel by Koushun Takami • MSRP: $14.99 U.S. / $16.99 CAN • Available Now!

ASPEN COMICS: Lola XOXO #1 Preview!

Aspen’s newest hit series debuts!

LOLA XOXO #1
Story & Art by Siya Oum ­

LOLA-01b-Reg-Siya-OUM

In the “Wasteland”, Lola, a young woman with a resolve fortified by a
lifetime of survival on her own, must journey across the nuclear-decimated
United States in order to find the family that was taken from her! As her
quest for the truth begins, Lola uncovers the true inhumanity of the
Apocalypse, as those who seek to hold power in a new frontier, will do so at
all bloody costs…including her life!

Aspen is proud to bring you artist Siya Oum‘s highly anticipated new series!
Sure to be one of 2014′s most exciting debuts, LOLA XOXO is ready to take
you on an incredible adventure unlike any other!

LOLA XOXO #1 is in stores April 9th, 2014!