Five new release picks for October 19, 2010

Now that we've hit the midpoint of October, it means the releases are going to start ramping up a bit for the holidays. It's already apparent what the big films and games are supposed to be, but with so much junk coming out, it's still hard to keep track of everything. You'll want to have your wallet ready this week if you've got an interest in classic Mario Bros.-style platforming, graphic design, aliens or the apocalypse. If you're a fan of all the above, then you're going to have a really busy week.

5. Picture This by Lynda Barry Lynda Barry's previous book was the excellent (and Eisner Award winning), Now Picture This, so we've got high expectations for Picture This. Barry's books are kind of instructional in nature, but they dwell on the very need to create art. Picture This looks to be an inspirational and lovingly crafted implementation and praise of the motivation that drives artists.

4. Predators (DVD, Blu-Ray) By all accounts, Predators should have been a terrible movie. It was a sequel to a decade old franchise, and the trailers made it look like complete crap. We have no idea how Predators managed to beat the odds and come out on top, but it did. Perhaps it was just our low expectations, but we're happy to report it's a film worth watching.

3. Super Meat Boy (Xbox Live) We absolutely adore Super Meat Boy. It's the type of game with the kind of retro-charm that manages to push the puzzle-platformer genre forward while maintaining an eye for the classic difficulty of games of old. It's a brutally difficult experience at points, but an enjoyable one regardless. If painstaking difficulty isn't your idea of fun, there's actually anther downloadable game worth noting here, which is Costume Quest. If you love the idea of a quirky RPG brought to you by the minds behind Psychonauts and Brütal Legend, you won't want to miss it.

2. I Wonder by Marian Bantjes Marian Bantjes is a world-renowned visual designer and typographer, but that doesn't mean this book has to be humorless and filled with high-end design talk. Her work is internationally acclaimed as being some of the best the design world has to offer, but her quips and insights about visual culture are nearly just as interesting. I Wonder is a collection of essays ruminating on design and civilization, but we're pretty certain even the least artistic among us will find something to enjoy here. If nothing else, it has one of the most luxurious book covers we've seen in a long time.

1. Fallout: New Vegas (PC, Xbox 360, PS3) Fallout: New Vegas is a sequel, but it uses the same buggy, ugly engine and basic premise as the last game. This isn't to say it's not worthy of the title sequel, but people should't be expecting a whole new experience here. The system is simple: you're given a massive open-world (in this case, Las Vegas), to do whatever the hell you want in. It's post-apocalyptic, so if the idea of seeing a destroyed Las Vegas-cum-Mad Max is you're idea of a rip-roaring awesome time, you'll find a lot to enjoy here.

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