Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Strip #14: Special Delivery!






This is technically the last strip of Season 1!  My god!  Imagine, we've gone full circle:  Habbo and Goldhook hanging out on a boat in Strip #1, to the reason that Alleron's navy found Privateer Point!  We've even seen hints that Alleron's government isn't all its cracked up to be, what with a decorated Admiral defecting.  Wow!

I'd written more strips for Privateer Point, mostly focused on Samuel/Victoria's establishment as characters, but Habbo and Goldhook are the protagonists, here.  This story is seen through their eyes, mostly; at least until well into Season 2, and probably always with them as a lens for the reader.  However, I'm thinking that an exchange between Swiftshank and Whitesand might be a wise idea.  In fact, it could be fun!

So Season 1 will officially end with what I've already whipped together, that being the land-fall Habbo and Goldhook make.  Season 2 also starts with footage shot outside, in the real world, meaning it'll look much more awesome.

In the meantime, enjoy!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Strip #13: I fought the law...






It's the weekend.  I tried re-sizing the text this time, instead of re-writing it.  I think it worked out well, though its a touch fuzzy.

Also, as far as the effects are concerned, they're much better.  The smoke looks like smoke, the flying Goldhook (and the ad-hock sky I put him up against) look decent, all in all?  A pretty decent production.  I'm almost up to new strips!  Better get to work!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Strip 12: War At Sea






I decided to keep the original resolution, which is ultra-sharp, and even add in the "on-board graphics" of panel 2.  It's very raw, Terminator-1 Esque, even; but I think it helps make things a bit easier to recognize.

I still way, wayyyy over-blurred the guy falling off of the cannon near Swiftshank.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Strip #11: "Mis-Spoke," plus a bonus strip!






Just a quickie, a re-post of a single-shot dialogue.  Strip 12'll be out tomorrow.  Here's something I posted for a weather-report I wrote.  It's funny because we got an inch and a half of snow literally the day after I filmed scenes for Chronicles in 50 degree weather.  Enjoy!



Monday, January 21, 2013

Strip #10: Incoming!






This one seems to have fared a lot better, when it comes to effects.  The shield overlays are much more what I'd search for in the future, while even the energy cannons (at full charge, naturally) look pretty decent and seem to bleed well into the defenses.  I touched up the facial expression on Swiftshank's pal and refined the dialogue a bit.  I even tweaked the cannon/engine on the Beryllius a touch, just for effects' sake.  Now they look disabled.

Anyhow.  That's all.  Enjoy!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Strip #9: Fire!



Strip 9 was another of those "effects-heavy" strips, and I feel it came out a lot better than 8.  Something I've learned (sadly, I hadn't learned yet) is that blur effects to indicate motion are good, but in moderation.  The cannon-ball, for example, streaks wayyyy too much in panel four.  I think the same applies to the bow of the Bobcat, which is crashing into the ocean.  The smoke also looks kinda blah.

On the upside, hey!  It's strip #9!  I also improved the dialogue a bit.

I also did about seven or eight strips worth of filming, outside, today.  I wanna include sort of a comparison/teaser.  This'll highlight both the new camera (in relation to the old one, used above) as well as the difference that shooting outdoors makes to the realism and atmosphere.

Filmed indoors.  Not bad, no real focus, definitely looks artificial.


Filmed outdoors.  Focus effects increase the magnitude of what's going on, while the hill looks real.  Expect to see this shot a lot!

Strip #8: Incoming!








I enlarged the in-strip text.  This is the first straight-down strip I have, I think, and it was taken using a camera which is entirely unavailable to me.  It was also the first really big attempt at graphical effects I made. It's okay, but I don't like how the shield effects turned out on the Bobcat.  I think the shield looks too circular on the back-end, but the front-end is okay.  In the future, I'm going to "splash" the effects more.


Other Housekeeping!

So, first of all, as you might or might know when I moved out of my apartment, I lost a couple of key characters.  Namely, I lost Lysander and Darius.  It was tough, but I've managed to recoup those losses.

Second!  As I'm also a writer/novelist, I've put out a few books.  My latest novel, Physics Incarnate, is officially one year old as of today!  It's available in paperback and on the Kindle.  Check it out!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Strip #7: Good Warning!






I tried to reduce the overall image size and increase the font size.  Hopefully this is more legible.  Also, hopefully, the effects are a touch better.  I upgraded the magic-gathering images.

In the shooting department, today, I got 2/3rds of what looks like my camera set-up established, and used it to take some test shots.  Some are "promo" pics, and will be re-shot.  Others probably will not, just to guarantee the sixteenth episode!

In the meantime, continued feedback on how the revamping is going is, well, needed.  I need the input!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Strip #6: First The Good News








Not quite sure how I like this font, or this camera resolution.  On the upside, I certainly won't be using it anymore!  On the downside, it seems I'm missing certain "vital characters."  Some can be more easily replaced than others...:/

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

No new comic, but...


And, yes, I realize all of the "new" comics are just re-edits of the old ones; but here's something new.  I'm still testing out names for this little place, but for now call it Stronaard castle.  The wall on the left-hand side I actually got today, as part of a The Hobbit set that I actually felt would fit nicely.  I need to add some more ramparts, maybe do some color-balancing where applicable, but it looks good, so far.

If you're wondering, some features are...

 - The left-hand wall is supported by pillars, and has a small catapult on it.
 - The building near the ramp has a ladder leading to the roof, as well as a bridge.  It will serve as a "resting place" for a hand-held heavy plasma cannon, mainly used for anti-vehicular reasons.
 - Underneath the front barracks is a jail-cell.
 - The top bailey is also fully enclosed.
 - On the roof of the top bailey, accessed through a ladder just to the side of the castle, there are a number of throwing spears as well as the castle's primary defensive weapon, a five-barreled anti-aircraft gun with computer-aided targeting, 360 degree fire, and vertical lift/descent to allow all barrels to cover the entire castle.

Plot-wise, this place is more "Season Three" than "Season Two," but I like it.  It's neat!

Anyway, tomorrow I plan to get some more old episodes up; and soon, weather permitting (hehe), I shoot some new scenes!



Monday, January 14, 2013

Strip #5: My Kingdom For An Antivirus!





So.  This is that fifth strip that really was ugly.  It was all five panels arranged left-to-right.  The text was much harder to read.  I say "harder" because this is still not the best, ahh, example of text embedding.  It has to do with the camera I took these shots with.  It was a huge, huge pixel image.  I dunno.

On the other hand, this is the first episode where the plot actually starts to take shape.  To offer some "it's been a few years" explanation:  Goldhook and his crew hit up an Alleronian facility involved in building their newest boat, the "Panther."  Swiftshank and Ricardo refer to Alleron's navy as their former employer.  That ought to make pretty obvious their importance.

So it's shaping up!

Strip 4: Privateer Point






So, now we get a look at Privateer Point.  I've tried to cut down heavily on the dialogue at this point, and I'm pretty confident that it looks...Decent, at least.  The next one is the really hard to fix one.  Ugh.

Strip #3: Habbo Has Skills





My first "action scene" in the comic.  Not bad!  But not perfect, either.  It also reveals just how Habbo is effective in combat.  Enjoy it!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Strip #2: Sea Sickness




Again, I touched up the dialogue texts.  Can you believe that I originally made this in 2010?  Life was so different, then.  I'm going to perform some minor touch-ups to all of the original strips (15, I believe?).  But major overhauls may be really hard.  Some of the cameras I experimented with are no longer available, while others provided some really, genuinely crappy originals that I really can't re-shoot.  I think there's one strip that's five-panels long and it just extends in a line, and I might try to break that up.

Well, until tomorrow, perhaps!  If you really want to read the un-fixed versions, don't forget - the original page is still available on my website.  Which, itself, needs to be fixed!

Strip #1: Habbo and Goldhook.




Working...

Phase one:


 - Properly design blog.
 - Establish necessary pages (characters, background).
 - Upload old comics.


Phase two:


 - Shoot new scenes.
 - Edit.
 - Upload new comic strips!