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Who is the Black Panther?


The Black Panther is a title of the defender of the African kingdom of Wakanda.  While many men have had the title of Black Panther throughout time by far the most well known is King T'Challa.

Black Panther has not appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe however he will very SOON.  Actor Chadwick Boseman has been hired to play the titular champion of Wakanda.  Marvel has begun paving the way for the character to appear.  There have been numerous Black Panther Easter Eggs in the Marvel TV Series Agents of SHIELD.
 Black Panther will for sure be in Captain America 3 Civil War as well his own movie Black Panther.

First Appearance: Fantastic Four #52

Black Panther Film News Hub:
Black Panther Film - Trailers, news, art, interviews
The Black Panther film hub is home to tons of information on the upcoming Black Panther film set to be released in 2018.  It includes actor / Director interviews as well as media and products on the upcoming film.

Black Panther News and Info:

Black Panther Multimedia:


Becoming the Panther
The Black Panther title is used by the champion of Wakanda.  While the Panther title is worn by men and women of royal blood it is not given to them.  Each Panther must earn the title through a set of ritualized trials that for T'Challa included fighting/defeating the then current Black Panther his uncle S'yan.  Once the title is won, a special heart shaped herb is provided that heightens the users senses and reflexes.  The Panther is also spiritually linked to the Panther god known as Bast.

Klaw finding Vibranium in Wakanda

T'Challa's father is killed by a mercenary by the name of Klaw Klaw was pursuing a rare metal in Wakanda called Vibranium.  While T'Challa manages to expel the invader he realizes he and his country must change to deal with these kind of threats.  Essentially, he does not want Wakanda to fall to imperialism of foreign powers.  He then goes on a long educational trip across the globe to learn all that he can.  He returns undergoes the ritual of the Panther and becomes the enlightened ruler and defender of Wakanda.

T'Challa often has to deal with his adoptive brother Hunter.  Hunter resents T'Challa for being in line to become King.  Hunter at one points runs a secret police that T'Challa shuts down when he becomes King.
The two often fight in a similar manner as Thor and Loki.

Other reoccurring adversaries of Black Panther include Man Ape and Klaw.

Fantastic 4 and Avengers:
T'Challa sees the growing super human phenomena and goes out to meet some of them.  He manages to defeat all 4 of the members of the fantastic 4 individually as a test.  He later befreinds them and as well as the Avengers.  T'Challa goes back forth defending and ruling Wakanda and the world with the Avengers.

For a time T'Challa loses control of the country to rival, Erik Killmonger.  Killmonger attempts to bring Wakanda back to an ancient form of government without vestiges of colonialism.

A Nation Under our Feet:

T'Challa has returned home to Wakanda only to be faced by a series of terrorist and ideological threats to his rule.  A new mysterious group called the People pursue a more democratic form of government and do so with violence.  Meanwhile, some of the King's own Dora Milaje form their own revolt.
T'Challa meets with a variety of despicable despots hoping to get hints on how to put down a rebellion.  In the end he takes none of their horrific advice however, one of the members is video taped discussing the advice he gave T'Challa.  This interview is made by the People released to the public who are horrified at what their King has been listening to.

Ezekiel Stane is revealed to be a sponsor of the People.  He captures T'Challa but not before T'Challa manages to call in the calvary with an array of his super friends coming to his rescue including Gateway, Strom, Luke Cage, and Misty Knight.

Top 10 Villains of the Black Panther

Storm - Wife
Shurri - Sister
T'Chaka - Father deceased
Luke Cage - Friend
Misty Knight - Friend
Gateway - Friend

Skills and Powers:
Being raised as heir to the king T'Challa has been training to be the Black Panther his entire life.  He has studied science, politics, strategy and tactics.  He studied in some of the finest schools in America and Europe and is considered one of most formidable scientific minds in the Marvel Universe.

He is highly trained in a variety of martial arts and weapons.   His fighting ability is extremely high and has beaten a long list of heroes and villains.  His style often involves using the stances and moves of animals and integrating them into his human form.

The technology T'Challa has is very advanced.  His suit is made of Vibranium and while lite weight it can absorb the impact of blows, falls and bullets like heavy armor.  He can on run walls, dissolve metal, create energy daggers, jump and move without making a sound.  Beyond his suit he also has the Kimono Card which allows him to have satellite access and block radio signals from where ever he is.
He also can use any device in Wakanda which includes almost anything that one can imagine.

The spiritual link to the Panther god Bast also aids T'Challa from time to time.  Particularly if he is attacked on a spiritual or magical level the Panther helps protect him.

At times it has been shown that there is a spiritual linkage between all the Black Panther alive and dead.


Actor Chadwick Boseman has been hired to play the titular champion of Wakanda, the Black Panther.

Captain America: Civil War:
Black Panther made his first appearance in the MCU in Captain America: Civil War.  After seeing his father killed in a terrorist attack T'Challa beings a hunt for the presumed assassin Bucky aka the Winter Soldier.  This leads him into a confrontation with Captain America and directly into the the throes of Civil War.
Upon learning the truth that Zemo had orchestrated the events to lure the Avengers to fighting each other T'Challa forgives Zemo and refuses to kill him.  He then invites Bucky to Wakanda where brainwashed super assassin can get treatment and be kept safely.

Black Panther:
T'Challa returns home to face a threat to his rule over Wakanda.  Two villains combine forces in attempt to end the line of family's rule.

Black Panther Store:

Toylab Recommended:  Black Panther: A Nation under our Feet
I really can not recommend this Black Panther story enough to people who want to read a Black Panther story. No this is not a pure clean, beginning in comics their rarely are. What the story offers though is an amazing story, that shows both grandeur and struggles of Wakanda, and the nation's titular hero the Black Panther. Few have done it better than this.

More Marvel Fun!
Marvel - News, Characters, Reviews, Movies, and Comics 

Top 10 Most Evil Marvel Monsters

The Top 10 Most Evil Marvel Monsters!

Toylab's bloggers met to decide the top 10 most evil monsters.  This debate was actually some what more difficult than one might expect because many monsters were deemed to be simply misunderstood and not really evil.  After searching through the ranks of Marvel's monstrous characters we still found some evil dudes.

We decided not to include Demons or dark gods because otherwise they would make up the whole list.  So there is no Mephisto, Satannish, or Cthon on this list.  Humans were also kept out because they are not "Monsters" though there are many humans in the Marvel universe who could give the characters on this a run for their money.  We may revisit this with the villains of the Punisher some time as it would be a very interesting top 10.

Anatomy of Evil

We will attempt to rate the Marvel Monsters based off Yale Professor Michael Stone's Scale of Evil.
The Scale of Evil rates murderers based largely on their motivations to determine how evil they are.  The scale ranges from a 1 (Not evil) to 22 (Very evil).

The levels of the anatomy of evil are broken into 6 major categories and are described by Michael Stone as:

Killer but no Evil
1) Justifiable Homicide - People who kill for a good reason.  To save others etc.

Impulsive Murders in Persons without Psychopathic Features
2) Jealous Lovers, Egocentric, immature people, committing crimes of passion
3) Willing companions of killers, impulse-ridder, some antisocial trait
4) Killing in self defense, but extremely provocative toward the victim
5) Traumatized, desperate persons who kill relatives or others, yet have remorse
6) Impetuous, hotheaded murderers, yet without marked psychopathic traits

Persons with a Few or No Psychopathic Traits, Murders of a More Severe Type
7) Highly narcissistic persons, some with a psychotic core, who murder loved ones
8) Murders sparked by smoldering rage - resulting sometimes in mass murder

Pychopathic Features Marked; Murders show Malice Aforethought
9) Jealous lovers with strong psychopathic traits or full blown psychopathy
10) Killers of people "in the way" (including witnesses), extreme egocentricity
11) Fully psychopathic killer of people "in the way"
12) Power hunger psychopaths who murder when "cornered"
13) Inadequate, rageful psychopaths some committing multiple murders
14) Ruthlessly self-centered psychopathic schemers

Spree or Multiple Murders: Psychopathy is Apparent
15) Psychopathic, cold-blooded, spree or multiple murderers
16) Psychopathic persons committing multiple vicious acts (including murder)

Serial Killers, Torturers, Sadists
17) Sexually perverse serial killers, killing is to hide evidence, no torture
18) Torture-Murderers, though the torture element is not prolonged
19) Psychopathic driven to terrorism, subjugation, rape etc short of murder
20) Torture-murderers but in persons with distinct psychosis (such as schizophrenia)
21) Psychopaths committing extreme torture but not known to have killed
22) Psychopathic torture murderers with torture as their primary motive.  The motive need not be always be sexual.

Is using this scale a bit overboard for comic book monsters?  Heck yeah it is but its great for discussion so lets do it anyway!

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Grottu King of the Insects

Grottu wants to conquer the world and seems indifferent to those he harms.  Some of this motivation comes from how both he and other insects are treated by mankind.  Due to him having an actual grievance and a reason for Rage he slipped down in the scale

We have assigned Grottu  to the 8 category of evil.

8) Murders sparked by smoldering rage - resulting sometimes in mass murder

While perhaps capable of doing worse than many on this list Grottu does have real reasons for being angry with humanity and thus some acts could be considered justified acts of aggression.

Click here to learn more about Grottu

Fin Fang Foom

Fin Fang Foom jumped around on our list depending on what story we were looking at.  It should be noted that a fully rehabilitated Foom has been shown working with heroes in later stories.  However, for his long comic history Fin Fang Foom was depicted as an alien warlord bent on conquering the world.  Foom was willing to work with people to meet his ends but only so long as those people worked for him.  He is manipulative, power hungry and shows little qualms for slaughtering of people.  He slides down morally up though in that his motivations are due to goals of his people for conquest and not out of a desire to cause pain or harm.  His willingness to work with others also illustrates an ability to only kill when he feels it is needed to further his aims.

We have assigned Fin Fang Foom to the 8 category of evil.

12) Power hunger psychopaths who murder when "cornered"

We have made Foom worse on the scale than Grottu in part because he has no real reason to attack humanity other than seeking power.

Click HERE for more Fin Fang Foom

Gigantus an evil would be conqueror

Gigantus makes the list as he is very uncaring toward the world populace and any destruction he creates in his attempt to take over the world.  Also his cowardice when faced by a seemingly more powerful opponent seems to make him even more vile.

We have assigned Gigantus to the 13 category of evil.

13) Inadequate, rageful psychopaths some committing multiple murders

While Gigantus has no qualms with killing massive amounts of people he does so on the orders of others whether it being the King of Mu or the Mole Man.   In this sense it is hard to classify him as a true schemer who is thinking out all of his terrible actions.  He is simply a powerful and indifferent cog.

Click here to learn more about Gigantus

Moomba a sneaky conqueror

Moomba is a giant monster who also want to take over the world.  He schemes ahead by putting special statue soldiers all over the world and waiting for those statues to be taken into homes and building before animating them.  Moomba shows a great deal of uncaring for the well being of others as well as high level of scheming.

We have assigned Moomba to the 14 category of evil.

14) Ruthlessly self-centered psychopathic schemers

Moomba is indifferent to the level of devastation he causes and also planned his moves in advance.

Click HERE for more info on Moomba

Living Statue

The Living Statue immediately sets out to kill its own creator immediately after being given life.  It is not grateful in anyway for being given life, nor does it have any real grievance with its creator it simply wants to kill and do evil for the sake of evil.

The only thing holding back the Living Statue is that he does not show signs of torturing his victims.

We have assigned the Living Statue to the 15 category of evil.

15) Psychopathic, cold-blooded, spree or multiple murderers

He is cold blooded in his pursuit of murder but does not seem to desire torture.

For more on the Living Statue click HERE

Trull the Inhuman 

There is something evil generally about taking over the tools of people and use them to harm people indiscriminately.  It is an act of perverting safe things and making them evil things as a form of torture and subjugation.  This is in part why Trull climbs so high on our list of most evil characters.  Trull also seems far more evil in later appearances with Ghost Rider than he does in his initial appearance.

We have assigned Trull to the 18 category of evil.

18) Torture-Murderers, though the torture element is not prolonged

Trull does not seem to prolong his torture but quickly uses the machines under his command to kill and assume control.  His torture is aimed at taking control and subjugating others.

To learn more about Trull click HERE

Orrgo - Marvel Monster

Orrgo shows disdain for all creatures that are less powerful or intelligent than him which makes up almost everyone.  His only restraints come from the selfish worry of not getting beat up or killed.  He is not courageous or willing to put himself out for a cause beyond himself.  This makes him for all his power very evil.

We have assigned Orrgo to the 19 category of evil.

19) Psychopathic driven to terrorism, subjugation, rape etc short of murder

He is also has initial reason for his attack on Earth other than to show Earth that he is superior.  He is from the other-side of universe and so no one from Earth has hurt him.  He also has no need for the resources of Earth due to his species advanced technology and powers.  While seemingly funny at times Orrgo's crimes are pretty hideous.  His mind control of all Earth is a kind of mass rape and is even worse when considered it was done for the sole purpose of subjugation.

Click HERE to learn more about Orrgo

Varnae the root of evil of vampires

Varnae is easily the most evil so far on the list.  Some may put him even higher on the list as his crimes are voluminous.  Varnae is a sorceror in the dark arts whose work causes the destruction of his society killing everyone.  He also creates varmpiriscm and proceeds to spread the monstrous affliction across the world.  He does not only spread vampiricsm but nurses it and leads it.  When vampiriscm is irradiated Varnae proceeds to bring it back.

He sees humanity as nothing more than food.  He delights in pain and controlling humans.  He also mocks humans who help him.

We have assigned Varnae to the 20 category of evil.

20) Torture-murderers but in persons with distinct psychosis (such as schizophrenia)

One thing holding Varnae back is that he really seems to be more of a force of nature doing what his vampire instincts see to want him to do.  His mind set is thus somewhat off from that of normal human and may be likened to a kind of schizophrenia.  His murders are also generally to eat and not to inflict pain as the primary purpose.  He also moves up the scale in that Varnae does generally seem concerned about the well being of his people "vampires" and not solely about his own power.

To learn more about Varnae click HERE

Dracula the ancient evil

Dracula is chosen by Varnae as a leader of vampires in part because of his immense willingness to commit cruelty.  He is seen as Varnae as a strong leader willing to do anything for his cause.

As a vampire Dracula sexually, mentally, politically and magically controls and manipulates people.  Sometimes this is done for power but other times it seems to be for entertainment.  This ability to control and manipulate people as his true mastery make him one of the most evil monsters in all of the Marvel universe.

As a human and leader he is willing to extremely torture people sometimes for a purpose but other times for his own pleasure.

We have assigned Dracula to the 22 category of evil.
22) Psychopathic torture murderers with torture as their primary motive.  The motive need not be always be sexual.

This is the highest category of evil on the scale however we have character that we have ranked as even more evil.

For more Dracula click HERE

Deacon Frost

Deacon Frost is about as despicable as they come.  He is willing to throw of the rules of both humans and vampires to pursue power thus he is willing to even pervert the rules and norms of monsters.
Deacon Frost's own origins reveal a scientist willing to ruthlessly experiment on people to pursue his own immortality.

As a vampire Deacon Frost mentally and sexually violates humans to pursue his own ends.

 His creation of Blade shows a morbidly,evil mind set in his preying on a pregnant woman by specifically targeting, and manipulating her despite other options available.  In this sense he purposeful manipulates the breaks the taboo of society for his own delight and pleasure.  This is level beyond that of Dracula who generally is attacking people to feed or for power.  While the machinations of Dracula seem to be power driven, the machinations of Frost seem to be cause the most pain and harm.  The crimes of Frost are not all always optimized toward the pursuit of power.  In the case of his feeding on Blade's mom Frost actually created his own nemesis in Blade that distinctly would hurt him in the future.  However, his pursuit of a new type of victim to torture with his morbid curiosity could not be sated by killing normal targets.  This makes Frost even more evil than Dracula.

There is a reason why Blade pursues Deacon Frost beyond all other vampires even those with more power and that is because Deacon Frost is really as evil as evil gets.

We have assigned Deacon Frost to the 22 category of evil the highest level of evil on the scale.
22) Psychopathic torture murderers with torture as their primary motive.  The motive need not be always be sexual.

Deacon Frost is ranked as the most evil Monster character on our list.  He tops out at the 22 level and even beat out Dracula for the prize as most evil.

To learn more about Deacon Frost click HERE

Well you made it through the list of the most despicable Marvel monsters.
What are your thoughts on this most evil list?  Did we get it right?  Did we miss any monster that you felt should have made the list? Please, let us know in the comment section below.


Monsters Unleashed - 2017 

Marvel - News, Characters, Reviews, Movies, and Comics 

Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life Netflix - News and promotions

Gilmore Girls A year in the Life
A Year in the Life was a new season of Gilmore Girls and released on Netflix.  The show was very popular on Netflix and has set the web ablaze in Gilmore Girls rumors.

A Year in the Life Season 2?
Will there be a season 2 to Gilmore Girls a Year in the Life?  Well the first one did very well and managed to bring back all of the characters of the original.  The ending of series did leave a bit of a bitter taste in the mouth of fans, when it ended on a major cliff hanger.  I won't say what the cliff hanger is but you should watch the season if you are a fan of the series.

It has been suggested by some that the cliff hanger ending was actually the planned ending for the show all along. So while fans may not like the ending, that could be it..........Or will it be?

Que dramatic music please!...

On December 28th Netflix tweeted out a very special Gilmore Girls tweet.  The tweet could be nothing more than ginning up interest to get more people to watch a Year in the Life.  Lets face it not everyone has seen it yet and Netflix could still get many more views over the holidays.  But that explanation seems a bit too boring for what could be a huge, HUGE bombshell.  Lets check out the tweet.

Well BOOM!!!! that is a big deal tweet!

Ok well that spoiler on the how the season ended is going to have to be said in order for me to discuss the implications of this tweet.


Spoiler Alert

Spoiler Alert

Spoiler Alert


Seriously Spoilers ahead read ye no farther unless you already KNOW the dastardly ending.

Ok at the end of "A Year in the Life"  Season One (because I'm pretty sure there will be a 2) Rory tells her mother "Mom, I'm pregnant" and boom the show ends.  Now the interesting thing here is that Rory has been with a boyfriend named Paul throughout the season as well as sleeping with the series bad boy Logan.  The question then looms who is the father!

The tweet itself bring up the question while giving a nod to an early episode where April Nardini's science project leads her to discover that Luke Danes was her father.  It sure seems like Netflix is saying there is more to this story as a major question looms who is the father of this new baby?

If I had to guess who the father was I'd say it was Logan. Paul was the poor guy that Rory kept forgetting even existed so I have a hard time imagining him being the dad.  Plus making Logan who is engaged to another woman is just so full of drama that I can't imagine the show going in another direction.  That said who knows the show has really kept fans on their toes so far.

Also does this mean that we need to start making shirts that say Team Logan or Team Paul on them? Or Maybe just Team Rory? I am normally on Team Rory but I have to say her decisions made during "A Year in the Life" were disappointing. Personally, I hope she has a new season just to redeem herself because I love Rory's character and she deserves better.

A Year in the Life
A new season of Gilmore Girls is set to be released on Nov 25, 2016. The new season will be four episodes and is titled "A Year in the Life"

While I may not be in the Gilmore Girls target audience I have watched the show.....A LOT. I will also say that the show and particularly Luke has shaped my "Dad" style. I often rock the flannel and occasionally to my wife's chagrin sport the backwards hat. I am also more often than not a bit grumpy. That's right Luke is my dude.  Needless to say I am excited for the first big promotion for the show on October 5th that is all about Luke.

Gilmore Girl Revival Trailer

Luke's Coffee shops promotion on October 5th, 2016

On the morning of October 5th hundreds of coffee shops through out the United States and Canada will be converted to look like Luke's cafe from Gilmore Girls.  Luke's is one of the most inconic locations in the show and This is part of a massive promotion by Netflix for the new season of Netflix.  The Gilmore Girls new season makes a lot of sense for Netflix as it is not only pulling in eyeballs to the new season but is also getting viewers on older seasons as fans rewatch them.

What will each Luke's cafe have?  According some reports they will use specially branded hats, aprons and cups.

I am not sure if they will try to make the shops look like Luke's too?  This is what the shop looked like on the show.

My personal favorite part of the shop is the no cell phone sign.  That reaks of a grumpy get off my lawn type of attitude that I am quite fond of.

There is also supposed to be a "Fun Surprise" underneath the Gilmore Girls coffee sleeves.   Gilmore girls Snapcodes will be printed on the custom coffee cups that will unlock a special Gilmore Girls filter that can be used for 24 hours.

Toylab Bloggers will be going to a Luke's location in Denver  (Coffee Place European Cafe 5580 S Parker Rd., Aurora, CO 80015) tomorrow around 7 am.  Will take some pictures to show everyone Luke's coffee.  If you want to find a location near you check out the list below.

Free Coffee
Even if you do not like Gilmore Girls there is one more reason to check out coffee shops on October 5th 2016 and that is ......FREE COFFEE. That is right the stores will be giving away FREE coffee.

Darth Vader Kill Count


Darth Vader Kill Count
Have you ever been curious how many people Darth Vader kills?  Well here is a video that takes you through every kill he made in the films and tallys them all up.  As you can see its pretty high, though I actually thought it would be a little higher.

This does not count his kills in the Clone Wars cartoon or in other expanded universe stories or in the new comics.

Now keep in mind two things.  This video does not count the people killed in Rogue One which could be an awful lot.  Also the people killed by Luke Skywalker may actually be higher than Darth Vader due to his taking out the Death Star that was full of tons of people.

More Star Wars!
 Star Wars - Alpha 1 Hub of all things Star Wars related!

Who is Kylo Ren?
Who is Finn?
Who is BB-8?
Who is Rey? 
Who is Captain Phasma? 
What is the First Order?

X the Unknowable - Marvel Monster

Who is X the Unknowable?

X is a monster that appeared in early Marvel comics in the early 1960s. . This post is part of the Toylab Marvel Monster series that focuses on old Marvel Monsters in preparation for the 2017 Marvel Comic event Monsters Unleashed.  X has appeared in recent years as an adversary of Big Hero 6.

Name/Alias: X the Unknowable, The Thing that Lived

First Appearance: Tales to Astonish #20

Other Appearances: Alpha Flight #17 Vol 2

Gigantus - News:


A comic book writer, Charles Bentley is typing up a script for a new monster story on a type writer.  The type writer he working on happens to have a magical enchantment on it that can bring to life anything written on it.  Charles is utterly terrified when he realizes the monster X, he was writing about actually came alive.  He breaks the type writer which seemingly destroys X.

Alpha Flight / Big Hero Six
In Japan, X goes on a rampage in an amusement park called Cool World.  This is the head quarters for the super hero team Big Hero Six.  X's sudden appearance in Japan after seemingly being destroyed is when they find a child with a comic that seemed to foretell X's actions.  Big Hero Six recieves assistance from Alpha Flight to battle X.   They use the comic story to lure X to Mount Fuji where they seal him.

X has not appeared since being sealed in Mount Fuji, however he may appear in the upcoming Marvel event Monsters Unleashed.  He does tend to seem more like a magical character.

  • Super Strong - Not sure how strong relative to other monsters or heroes but was shown to have strength far surpassing a normal human.
  • Super Durable - 
  • Can change shape and seemingly mass
  • Can seemingly appear magically from mystic items like a comicbook / type writer.  His existence seems tied to these items.  Once the items are destroyed he seems to be destroyed as well.

Marvel Shop:
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Monsters Unleashed - 2017 

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IVs and Appraisal explained in Pokemon GO

What are IVs

A wrestling coach once said to me (or rather a huge group of wrestlers)
I'd like to tell you that you are all equal in ability.  But your not.  Each of you has your ceiling.  You can't control where it is, but its there.  What you can control is how close you get to that cieling.  Its your job to get close to it as possible..
This concept is very similar to IVs.

Each Pokemon has base statistics for Attack, Defense and Stamina.  These statistics determine how well its moves do and how well it defends.  As you power up a Pokemon it levels up and these statistics are increased until eventually the Pokemon's level maxs out.  The catch however is that each Pokemon has a different starting point and thus a different ending spot.  In this way two Vaporeons that are at level 10 could have different statistics.  If you are going to spend a resources on leveling up and evolving a Pokemon it is better to select one that has optimal or at least better than average IVs.  This means that the Pokemon has a higher ceiling than others of the same type.

The IVs stats are one aspect of the Pokemon you are basically handed when you catch it.  You can not change them.  If you are disappointed by the IVs of a Pokemon then you need to find another one.

One other aspect of a Pokemon that is given and can not be altered is its move set.  While Move Sets do change once the Pokemon is evolved they are not changeable or up-gradable.  Some Move Sets are also definitely better than others.  Generally Move Sets are judged by Damage Per Second.  This is the highest amount of damage that the Move Set  can cause (Type Damage excluded) for a given attack.

IVs and Move Sets are now more important that ever with coming of Buddy Pokemon.  The Buddy Pokemon feature allows you to invest and grow a single Pokemon.  There are a variety of factors to consider when selecting a Buddy Pokemon and certainly IVs are one of them.

How to Judge IVs
How to learn what you Pokemon's IVs are and if they are better that average or worse.  There are two main ways to determine if a Pokemon has good IVs or not.  First is to use the Appraisal feature built into Pokemon Go itself.  The appraisal feature is meant to look at the base stats of a Pokemon and compare it to full population of that type of Pokemon.

Each Team Leader will give an answer to the Appraisal and say various things about a Pokemon.  The lines you want to hear are:

  • Team Instinct: Overall, your (Pokemon Name) looks like it can really battle with the best of them!
  • Team Valor: Overall, your (Pokemon Name) simply amazes me.  It can accomplish anything!
  • Team Mystic: Overall, your (Pokemon Name) is a wonder! What a breathtaking Pokemon!

These lines indicate an overall top IV rating.

Another great line to hear is that Pokemon has hit max level of a given statistic.  If the Pokemon has one of the Max stats the leader will say:

  • Team Instinct: It's stats are the best I've ever seen! No doubt about it!
  • Team Valor: I'm blown away its stats. WOW!
  • Team Mystic: Its stats exceed my calculations. It's incredible!

There is another way to do it!
The 2nd way to determine IV value is to use a third party calculator like this one here:

PokeAssistant IV Calculator

Some have claimed use of the Calculator could result in banning but I do not see how as you are only entering in Pokemon stats and not personal information.

The Poke fun has just begun...Also See!

Pokemon Types Explained

More Pokemon GO! Tips, Tricks and More!

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Pokemon Go - Pokemon Battling tips and how to win

Pokemon Battling and how to win
Alright so you have level 5 and you now want to go to a gym and try to battle.  No so fast grasshopper you are not READY!

Pokemon Go does not have much in the way of directions.  This post along with others is designed to help new users understand the important strategies of battling at gyms.

First lets cover why do you want to battle at a Gym?
1) Its fun to test out your Pokemon against other Pokemon
2) You get to brag when you beat your friends Pokemon
3) If you win your Pokemon will be seen as a gym Guardian by everyone in your neighborhood
4) If your Pokemon lasts as gym Guardian for 20 hours you will recieve free Coins that can be used to buy other Pokemon items.

Battling a Gym controlled by your Team

If you team is in control of a gym you can go there and battle.  Battling your own team is often referred to as "Training" your pokemon.  Battling at gyms from your own team helps build up your Team Gym's reputation which allow the gym to have more Guardian Pokemon stocked there.  If you beat enough of the Pokemon there your Pokemon can take the place of one of the Guardians there.

Update 10/6/2016
Niantic made a change that allows users to train up 6 Pokemon at friendly gym.  It also allows for the Guardian Pokemon at the gym to match the CP (Combat Power) of players Pokemon.  This should make it easier for new or sporadic players to enjoy gym battles in the game.

Message from Niantic on Update:

Gym Training Just Got Easier...
As we continue to make improvements to Pokémon GO, we have made an enhancement to the Gym experience for Trainers of all levels. In an upcoming version of Pokémon GO, when training at a friendly Gym, Trainers will be able to bring six Pokémon to battle instead of one. In addition, the CP of the Pokémon you are training against may be temporarily adjusted lower during your training session to generally match your Pokémon’s battle capabilities.No matter what your level, you can now have an impact on your team’s Gym. Walk with your Buddy Pokémon to that nearby landmark and show your Team Leader that you can battle with the best!

Battling a Gym from Another Team Considerations:

Build up your training level:
Really to be very successful at battling it is likely you will need to hit a trainer level of at least 10.  The reason for this is that more powerful Pokemon appear as your level gets higher.  Most players get to the 10 -20 level pretty quick but then it becomes a slow xp grind.  So if you are above level 10 you are at least comparable to some of your competitors.

Team Building:
Next you need to do is to build a team of high CP pokemon from as many types as you can.  Everyone is going to be able to build a high CP Pigeot and Ratticate which covers flying and Normal.  Try to get at least one other powerful Pokemon.  Do not focus on powering up Pokemon too much.  A lot of new players waste a lot of stardust powering up Pokemon when they should be focusing on increasing their training level.  At a higher training level you begin to capture higher level Pokemon.

Scout the Gym:

The next thing to do is to scout out the gym you want to battle at.  You can pull up a gym that is on your screen by tapping on it.  This will show what a few important facts including:  Which team is in control of the gym, which Pokemon are guarding the gym, and how powerful those Pokemon are.  What kind of Pokemon do they have, how many are there, and how powerful are they.  If you are attacking a high level gym you may need to attack it with some other players.

Figure out the type of Pokemon at the gym then pick your own Pokemon accordingly.  You can set the order of your pokemon up to be best arrayed against your foes.
Pokemon Types Explained
The type of attacks of a Pokemon vs the Type of the Pokemon determine a portion of each attacks effectiveness.  I have seen a few people attempt to break down the attack values and they seem to use a variety of variables.  The only one known for sure though is the type damage.

The Gym Battle begins
Once the battle begins you can quick attack by tapping on your screen, do a special attack by holding down on the screen, and also dodging by swiping to the side.  The special attack only becomes available when the special bar becomes full.

Most people just tap their screens as hard as they can and occasionally do a special. That said I have seen a few people really focus on dodging and do quite well.  Including, taking down much higher level Pokemon.

You can also switch Pokemon that are battling by transferring your Pokemon out and moving a new Pokemon in.  This can allow you to take advantage of Type mismatches.

If you succeed the gyms reputation will be reduced.  If it is reduced enough then that team will get booted from the gym and the gym will lose its color.  This means the gym has gone neutral and anyone can take it.   At this time you can then add your Pokemon to the gym.  I recommend transferring your strongest level Pokemon to the gym.  Once your Pokemon has been added immediately attack the gym again.  Battling your own gym builds up its level.  You can also attack gyms that belong to your team to build up their level.

If any specific Pokemon like Snorlax, or Vaporeon is giving you trouble be sure to check out our How to Beat articles included in the Pokemon Go Tips below:

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Who is Santa Claus? (Marvel 616)


Who is Santa Claus? (Marvel 616)

In the Marvel Universe there is a real Santa Claus who is an ancient and very powerful mutant.  He possesses powers that come from both his mutant dna and from a variety of magical sources.  His exact powers and origins are not entirely clear but he is very old and very powerful.  He also does live at the North Pole, with elves, and gives presents to all of Earth's children on Christmas.

Fun facts:
Santa has faced a variety of foes in Marvel comics and has proven very resilient despite avoiding violence.

He once turns the evil Brotherhood of Mutants into Toys

Cerbro once located him as the most powerful Mutant on the planet!

Doctor Octopus once took over the North Pole but he was stopped by Antman and Santa Claus

Once Santa was injured  while flying over Latveria the kingdom of Dr Doom.  Dr Doom  showed a surprising amount of Christmas spirit.  Doom used his Doom bots to finish the Christmas deliveries.

Be Sure to check out:
ToyLab Christmas Coverage! 
What to get your geek for Christmas?

Pokemon Go - Best Moves

What are the Best Moves in Pokemon Go?

There are a few important ways to evaluate a Pokemon you have caught of a given species.  When you catch multiple of the same type of Pokemon you need to constantly be considering which you keep and which you trade in for Candy.  The first statistic to consider is the Pokemon's overall CP rating, the 2nd is its IVs, and finally is its move set. The Moves of a Pokemon are an important way of evaluating how good a Pokemon is.  There are many ways to use a Pokemon even with low IVs.

Each Pokemon in Pokemon Go comes with 2 moves, a Quick Move and a Special Move.  The Quick Move is the action taken during a finger tap in a battle.  The Special Move is the move taken when you hold your finger during a battle.  The Special move requires the player to build up the stamina bar.  Each Pokemon pulls its move from a set population of moves that are typically related to its Type.  Once a Pokemon has its moves, the moves do not change unless the Pokemon Evolves.

Ways to Evaluate Moves:

1) DPS - Damage Per Second - This is how damage a Pokemon can unleash using that Move.
2)  Type Combinations-  There are Pokemon who have different type of Moves from their Type and these combinations can valued as they can increase its competitiveness against certain other Pokemon.  A Ghost Type Pokemon with Non Ghost Moves for instance is very competitive against Snorlax.  A Pokemon with a useful Move combination maybe valued just for this reason.

Optimal Move by DPS Combination by each Pokemon

PKMN # Name Basic Atk Charge Atk
3 Venusaur Vine Whip Solar Beam
6 Charizard Wing Attack Fire Blast
9 Blastoise Water Gun Hydro Pump
12 Butterfree Bug Bite Bug Buzz
15 Beedrill Bug Bite Sludge Bomb
18 Pidgeot Wing Attack Hurricane
20 Raticate Bite Hyper Beam
22 Fearow Steel Wing Drill Run
24 Arbok Bite Gunk Shot
26 Raichu Spark Thunder
28 Sandslash Mud Shot Earthquake
31 Nidoqueen Poison Jab Earthquake
34 Nidoking Poison Jab Earthquake
36 Clefable Pound Moonblast
38 Ninetales Ember Fire Blast
40 Wigglytuff Pound Hyper Beam
42 Golbat Wing Attack Poison Fang
42 Golbat Wing Attack Air Cutter
42 Golbat Wing Attack Ominous Wind
45 Vileplume Acid Solar Beam
47 Parasect Bug Bite Solar Beam
49 Venomoth Bug Bite Bug Buzz
51 Dugtrio Mud Shot Earthquake
53 Persian Scratch Play Rough
55 Golduck Water Gun Hydro Pump
57 Primeape Low Kick Cross Chop
59 Arcanine Fire Fang Fire Blast
62 Poliwrath Bubble Hydro Pump
65 Alakazam Psycho Cut Psychic
68 Machamp Karate Chop Cross Chop
71 Victreebel Acid Solar Beam
73 Tentacruel Poison Jab Hydro Pump
76 Golem Mud Shot Stone Edge
78 Rapidash Ember Fire Blast
80 Slowbro Water Gun Psychic
82 Magneton Spark Flash Cannon
83 Farfetch'd Cut Leaf Blade
85 Dodrio Feint Attack Drill Peck
87 Dewgong Frost Breath Blizzard
89 Muk Poison Jab Gunk Shot
91 Cloyster Frost Breath Blizzard
94 Gengar Shadow Claw Sludge Wave
95 Onix Rock Throw Stone Edge
97 Hypno Zen Headbutt Psychic
99 Kingler Metal Claw X-Scissor
101 Electrode Spark Thunderbolt
103 Exeggutor Zen Headbutt Solar Beam
105 Marowak Mud Slap Earthquake
106 Hitmonlee Rock Smash Stone Edge
107 Hitmonchan Rock Smash Brick Break
108 Lickitung Lick Hyper Beam
110 Weezing Acid Sludge Bomb
112 Rhydon Mud Slap Stone Edge
113 Chansey Pound Psychic
114 Tangela Vine Whip Solar Beam
115 Kangaskhan Mud Slap Earthquake
117 Seadra Water Gun Hydro Pump
119 Seaking Poison Jab Megahorn
121 Starmie Water Gun Hydro Pump
122 Mr. Mime Zen Headbutt Psychic
123 Scyther Fury Cutter Bug Buzz
124 Jynx Pound Psyshock
125 Electabuzz Thunder Shock Thunder
126 Magmar Ember Fire Blast
127 Pinsir Fury Cutter X-Scissor
128 Tauros Tackle Earthquake
130 Gyarados Dragon Breath Hydro Pump
130 Gyarados Bite Hydro Pump
131 Lapras Frost Breath Blizzard
134 Vaporeon Water Gun Hydro Pump
135 Jolteon Thunder Shock Thunder
136 Flareon Ember Fire Blast
137 Porygon Tackle Signal Beam
139 Omastar Water Gun Hydro Pump
141 Kabutops Mud Shot Stone Edge
142 Aerodactyl Bite Hyper Beam
143 Snorlax Lick Hyper Beam
149 Dragonite Dragon Breath Dragon Claw

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