Mar 6, 2013

"Welcome to Pandora, kiddos."

So I finally got around to buying Gearbox's Borderlands 2 a couple weeks back and I've been thoroughly sucked back into the world of Pandora.  There won't be any spoilers ahead; the game's only been out a few months and not everyone's gotten around to playing it yet.

Anyway, it's gotten me working on my own team of intrepid Vault Hunters, all of whom are based on mine and my younger brother's original characters.  I've only completed a reference for Reina as The Huntress so far.  But that's what this blog post is about:  The preliminary work on the other members of the team.

First up is Trent as The Veteran, based on Reina's counterpart Trent Valimund.  He's ex-Hyperion (a nod to Roland being ex-Crimson Lance in the original Borderlands) and is roughly equivalent to Roland or Axton.  His Action Skill is to materialize his own heavy renegade version of Hyperion Engineer power armor around himself, briefly granting him additional speed, durability, and melee and gun damage.  I've done a nice ink line head portrait of him, but I've only got a couple small loose pencil sketches as to the rest of him:

The other character who's actually nearing completion is based on one of my little brother's characters:  Introducing Charbelle as The Pseudo-Siren.  A mad scientist obsessed with Sirens, she has fabricated a massive powered gauntlet fueled by Eridium which lets her effect Siren-like powers (albeit more clumsily than any of the six natural Sirens):

I'm unsure as to the exact nature of her Action Skill.  At present I'm thinking she would be able to cause a phase blast to emanate from a targeted enemy, inflicting splash damage on any nearby baddies.

So I guess this is just sort of a peek at what's coming.


Feb 15, 2013

Comics on the Horizon / Been a While

To start:  Goodness, I haven't updated in like seven months.  My college experience kind of punched me in the face at the beginning of the previous semester.  I won't delve into any details, but some major snafus in the registration process resulted in my unexpected transfer to a different school.  Again, I won't get into details, but I will say that I'm much happier where I'm at now.

I'm getting back into the groove with a fairly short post here.  For one, I've given the blog a visual update with a new (and if I may say so, much nicer) background image.

So.  I've mentioned in most of my posts here Novus Imperium, an SF universe created by several friends and myself.  It's been in development in one way or another for about eight years now.  Do you know how much development can occur in eight years?  The answer is "several metric space-tons."  At this point, NI is basically a fully-formed universe, with its own defined rules and aesthetics.

There is simply so much at the ready right now that I am (very cautiously) considering doing a comic / graphic novel adaption of some of the storylines that have been tossed around over the last couple years.  Right now, I'm planning on approaching the project from a manga-influenced angle (specifically, I've been hugely influenced by the works of Shirow Masamune over the years.  Primarily his Appleseed).  When I say manga-influenced, I don't mean that in every aspect.  Naturally, it'd be in the standard western left-to-right format.  Actually, it'd be easier to show you what I mean:

You'll have to click on that for the full effect.  These are some unlettered test-panels from what may be the first page of the whole project.

I realize that most westerners simply expect color in their comics, but this is a matter of stylistic choice for me.  In reading many of the very tech-and action-heavy SF mangas by the likes of Shirow Masamune and Tsutomu Nihei, I've really come to appreciate how cool stark black-and-white work can look (there are numerous instances, in Tsutomu Nihei's Biomega especially, of panels that simply would not have nearly as much visual impact if they were in color).

Granted, this project is in its infancy.  I don't plan on going beyond that first page until I've got every part of this first story laid down on paper.

So I guess I just move ahead from here and see what happens.  At the very least, it'll be a learning experience, as I've never tried to do anything quite like this before.