Our borg Best of 2020 list continues today with the Best in Comics and Games.  If you missed them, check out our review of the Best Books of 2020 here, the Best Movies of 2020 here, the Kick-Ass Heroines of 2020 here, and the Best in Television 2020 here.

We reviewed comics from every major publisher this year, and were pleasantly surprised with all the new characters and content available.  You’ll find both some new creators on the list this year and some fan favorites who keep making better comic books each new year.  We also include some great games and more from 2020.

Let’s get started with The Best in Comics…

Best Comic Book Series – Bounty Hunters (Marvel Comics).  Writer Ethan Sacks and artist Paolo Villanelli played with the entire Star Wars universe in a single series, bringing back the cyborg Valance and a host of our favorite bounty hunters.  The result is a great series full of action and throwbacks.

Best Sci-Fi Comic Series, Best Limited Comic Book Series, Best Interior Artwork – Strayed (Dark Horse Comics) by writer Carlos Giffoni and artist Juan Doe.   In the future a military-industrial complex reigns over all humanity and actively destroys distant alien worlds.  The galaxy’s only hope can be found through an unlikely pair: an astral-projecting cat named Lou and his human Kiara.  Honorable mention: Rogue Planet by writer Cullen Bunn and artists Andy MacDonald and Nick Filardi (Oni Press).

Best Comic Book Retro Fix, Best Comic Book Tie-In – Star Trek: Picard–Countdown (IDW Publishing). This was another tie-in mini-series that proved to be vital to a full understanding of the series to follow, revealing the backstory of Picard and new characters from the streaming series, including a pair of Romulan Tal Shiar agents.

Best Crossover/Mash-up Comic Book – Transformers/Back to the Future (IDW Publishing).  Writer Cavan Scott partnered with artist Juan Samu and colorist David Garcia Cruz to deliver a completely authentic Back to the Future visual vibe in a planet of Autobots and Decepticons.

Best Comic Book Single Issue Star Trek Voyager: Mirrors and Smoke One-Shot (IDW Publishing).  Writer Paul Allor and award-winning Star Trek painting artist J.K. Woodward partnered for the first, impressive appearance of the “Mirror” Voyager crew.  A beautiful book.

Best Comic Book Writing Strange Adventures, writer Tom King (DC Comics).  DC marked the return of Adam Strange in a big, bold way with this vibrant and lively limited series.

      

Best Comic Book Cover Artist – Frank Cho variant (various).  Perennial favorite cover artist Frank Cho created the best of this year’s variants for several series, from Catwoman’s 80th anniversary to Punchline, more Wonder Woman, and Red Sonja, as well as his ongoing, monthly Harley Quinn covers.

Best Comic Book Fantasy Series, Best Comics AnthologyDays of Endless Adventure, by writer Jim Zub and a legion of artists (IDW Publishing/Wizards of the Coast).  An epic adventure anthology for the Forgotten Realms.  Great characters and mythology in a huge 376-page, three-part comic.

Best Comic Book Event Wonder Woman #750, various covers (DC Comics).  More than 50 variant covers marked an event worthy of the superheroine.

Best Comic Book Homage Covers Mars Attacks Red Sonja (Dynamite).  You could hardly find better covers this year than the homage covers to this great mash-up by Arthur Suydam.

Best Comics Art/ArtistLockdown Heroes by Milo Manara.  Early in the pandemic this year, the Italian artist was the first to use his talents to help the effort, creating a book depicting pandemic heroes, which he sold to raise money for frontline efforts.

And The Best of the Rest…

Best RPG Book – Dungeons & Dragon’s Icewind Dale: Rime of the Frostmaiden by Chris Perkins (Wizards of the Coast).  What may be the deepest, most detailed world building in your D&D gaming yet.  Players will find some of the best storytelling and the most stunning artwork and art design of any fifth edition volume here.

Best Board GameScooby-Doo! Betrayal at Mystery Mansion (Avalon Hill).  Loads of fun and faithful to the animated series, featuring comprehensive references and episode throwbacks and Easter eggs.  A tabletop winner for the whole family.

Best Card GameMonster Madness (Wizards of the Coast).  Expect to get lots of gameplay and plenty of laughs out of this card game with a D&D theme.  Simple to learn and not too long so players can get several games in with no sign of boredom.  Great fun!

Biggest Genre Event of 2020Virtual Panels take over.  Yep, what a big change from past years, thanks to teleconferencing, now mainly via free streaming over one company’s services, a company called Zoom.  All a reaction to the covid pandemic, and all to keep us entertained.  Actors, writers, filmmakers, and more from all over the world provided virtual panels and kept us a little less bored.

Best Retro Toys – Retro Action Figures from The Mandalorian (Kenner).  The TV series with characters and vehicles derived from Kenner toys from the 1970s and 1980s comes full circle with new action figures from the series created in the style of the 1970s figures.  Anyone who ever put a vinyl cape on their Boba Fett will agree this is brilliant.

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Come back later this month as we wrap-up our year-end review and reveal our new entrants to the borg Hall of Fame.

C.J. Bunce / Editor / borg