Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I dunno... Something...

To be honest I'm just glad I got something out. I've been having a rough time of it™ recently and everything else I've tried has come out crapola.

I've got no idea what's going on here. I started out just wanting to do some freehand tablet practise. Lets just say that the little guy is a vengence devil that speaks in dimensional portals and comes out of peoples belly buttons when they can't find clean clothes. Hence why the guy seems to be pulling down his shirt.

Also: Goddamn Prinnies. Dood.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Round 2?

Self explanatory, I hope.

Side note: I'm so very over trying to draw myself at the moment. And indeed other people I know. All mountain training, I know, but that's enough for now.

Side side note: While doing this tonight I had the weirdest recallection of this old TV show called "Step by Step" that featured this surfer/layabout guy called Cody who was secretly a martial arts master or something and even pulled out the old nunchucks at some point. I'm really glad my brain has decided to remember this important stuff.

Monday, September 21, 2009

That's about enough of that.

It's done. No more. I couldn't take it anyway. Oh woe is me. Etc.

So this whole thing has taken a lot longer than I thought it would. On the other hand though, it turned out a lot better than I was planning (or indeed, expecting). And considering how sick (and delusional) I've been feeling (and are continuing to feel) these past few days I'm surprised I made it at all. Don't be surprised if I take a day or two off now.

So for those of you playing along at home and unable to work out what's going on: We have my housemates, the Orphans, in the various costumes from around the world. Clockwise from the top there's: Caitlin as a French Moulin Rouge Can-Can Dancer/Wench. James as a British Red Coat/Historical Pornstar. Sarah as an Austrian Beer Wench/Wench. And lastly me, as a Samurai/Wench. Sure, maybe they don't look exactly like us, but really, who demands realism from a cartoon?

All of this is for the "Around the world" party we're having soon. If you're reading this you're welcome to attend, providing you can decipher the hidden clues in the picture that will provide the proper address. Unless you're one of those crazy stalkers/spam bots of course...

Finally, can you also name all the famous landmarks in the background? It shouldn't be that hard, with the exception of the Washington Monument (Hint: It's in James' pants. Ladies).

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Eat your heart out Tintin...

Seriously... I can't see anything but lines right now.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

2 Mighty Warriors


So quick update: Did the extra detailing on me and most of James, but not the faces, because I think its only right to kick down the levels of abstraction a little to match the rest of the drawings.

I didn't include Sarah tonight because nothings changed there and she was taking up too much space at present. Similarly, I got rid of Caitlin because the real Caitlin had a sad about being up the back and being a boring French stereotype. NOT MY FAULT. Anyway, she's now specified that she wants to be a can can dancer or something, so I'll be redrawing that from scratch.

But let's not deviate from the plan too much...

So just because nights are WIP time, doesn't mean the train rides are too. The rub is that I'm not going to do any colouring on this one. Rough rough sketch it is. On a side note, I know a crappy carpenter blames his tools, but the new pens I brough aren't that great :(. I'll have to keep trying new ones and buy up big when I find good ones again.

But enough of that. To the left is "The Baron", main (silent) antagonist of "Johnny Lovebaby buys the farm". He has a moustache because a) he's a moustache twirling villain (which let's face it: it's the only kind of villain worth being) and b) because he's a connesuir of 70's pornography.

The Baron is the big bad that's put Johnny in the position he's in for the majority of the story. He's the head of a large mob family, but mostly rides the coat tails of his father's previous success. As a result, he has little knowledge of how to run the family business, and spends most of his time satisfying morbid curiosities.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Work-in-progress week?..

... Is going to be what this week is until I get this done.

When finished, this is going to be an invite for a thing. I don't wanna give away too much now or else I'll have nowhere to go for the rest of the week. So, for the moment, just accept that this for what it is: A bunch of lines vaguely representing my housemates in various costume.

So where I'm at now? I've got the base line art done for all the people (some more than others, poor Caitlin up the back is like 6 lines I swear). I've added some depth to Sarah's lines, and I've started on some of mine. Hopefully by next post I'll have that, and Jame's and Caitlins finished, as well has tweaking the faces to look a little more like they should.

Then? I'm still undecided. Note that the colour scheme is only so I can clear up the line work, it's only temporarly. I'm still deciding how I'm going to colour this (if at all) and what I'll do for the background (if anything).

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Boxing's been good to me. Hoooooooowaaaaaaard.

But tonight hasn't. I was planning on having our faces on those bodies, but it appears my body is violently against that, so it teamed up with my patience and tag team wrestled with me and my intentions. I lost thanks to fatigue coming out and throwing a chair into the ring when I wasn't looking.

This whole business is in recognition of Drew getting some Rocky style montages on to match my mighty mountain training.

As interesting as a fight between James Hollis and James Wallace would be, I think we all know who would win.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

This is my boom stick.

"Shiro the Bastard" is a bastard by name and a bastard by nature. As a young orphan, Shiro was drafted into the Yakuza, where his natural bloodlust and scrupulous morals allowed him to rise in rank until he became the chief enforcer for the Shanghai branch. In public he's calm, confident and powerful, in private he's a sadistic nightmare.

His weapon of choice is a modified pump action shotgun that fires short range buckshot rounds. Rather than use it like a conventional gun, Shiro uses it entirely for melee, and will only pull the trigger when the barrel is pressed up against an opponent. His attacks with the gun are similar to conventional jo strikes, but modified for the irregular shape of the shotgun, and include the pump action mid strike when required.

Naturally, all this close action shotgunning has left Shiro with some hearing problems, which while not servere do cause him to mishear things sometimes. Not that he has to here much, since it's normally him giving the orders rather than taking them.

Shiro the Bastard is one of the main antagonists in A Fistful of Dollars. When I get around to doing something with it at least.

Also, as a side note: Those of you with math skills may have noted that according to the blog tally to the right, yesterday was only post 99. It's both sad and true that I can not in fact count. Don't tell anyone.

Monday, September 7, 2009

100 post combo!

I was pretty excited when I went to post yesterday and noticed that I had 98 posts already. However, after posting and seeing the post counts to the right I noticed it was only showing 98 still. That's the reason for the double post today. I wanted to clear that draft and get a 100 post commemorative picture up. Sure, I could've deleted that draft, done something today and posted this tomorrow, but then my schedule would've been out of wack and besides, today is Motivational Monday, and today: I am my own motivation.

I decided to kick it old school for a change and do it all in ink, like I started out. I think right now we should have a moment's silence for all the sharpies that died tonight during the course of this picturing. Looking back, theres a lot I should've done. Making sure I had enough supplys would've been a start. As would a little bit of planning. As would not doing the 100 by hand. But hey!: where am I going to go for the 1000th post if I get everything right here.

Lastly, can you spot the 100 robots* that I drew into that picture?

*Note: Several, if not most of those robots are invisible.

Don't believe Ondore's lies - First impressions of Final Fantasy XII a few months too late.

More like a few years too late. I had this saved as a draft from the very early days of the blog and in order to make the other post of today make sense I've decided to publish this one. It's kinda pointless, because it's been so long I can't even remember much about this game, but oh well. I want my 100 posts dammit. I'm not even going to rewrite or finish it, that's how little care. Mind you I should get around to finishing that game some day.

I always planned to write a little bit about what ever game I'm currently playing. Not so much from a review point of view, I'll leave that to the professionals, I mean sitting down and trying to analyze what it does right and wrong, and how I can rip it off in some future design. I have tried putting on the 'Games Reviewer' hat previously; It was ill fitting and felt dorky, but the problem is the games I play are always fit into an odd reviewing niche. They aren't new enough to be considered cutting edge, yet they aren't old enough to be considered retro. They are the kind of games people just finished playing, as I've managed to find them cheap secondhand somewhere, and so me telling them if it's good or not becomes kind of redundant.

So without further ado, here I am playing FF12 and it's not that bad. It's both Final Fantasy and Not Final Fantasy at the same time. And also part World of Warcraft. And also part Star Wars.

The obvious difference is the abandonment of the ATB (Active Time Battle) system and random encounters. In its place: Active Dimension Battle (ADB) and no world map travel. In scope, It's a lot more epic than previous games, if not taking place over a much smaller area.

The new ADB system is pretty interesting, it allows you to give AI commands to team mates. Not only does it change up the way battles are fought, but it also adds another element of collectability to the game, and thats always good for the obsessive-compulsive crowd. The downside of the new system is that it makes the game feel a lot more like an mmorpg, just where instead of friends you have a couple of robots to help you out. Unfortuntately, this only goes to highlight how shallow some of the side quests can be. Fetch quests are abundent. Item farming also feels somewhat unnecessary. Futhermore there are several points were I've felt too detached from the main plot, sometimes due to level requirements. Grinding becomes necessary just to progress with the story, and thats never fun.

Similarities to Star wars are striking...


Sunday, September 6, 2009

In-joke Sunday?

I've typed the word "giraffe" so many times it has lost all meaning for me.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

You gotta keep the devil way down in the hole...

So on the advice of pretty much everyone on the Internet I went ahead and started watching The Wire. I gotta say, it's not bad. I'm still reserving judgment on whether it's the best show on television though. I will concede that for people with an irrational fear of sci-fi or fantasy it could very well be.For me though, the likes of Buffy, or more recently Lost and Battlestar Galactica trump The Wire in several ways.

What The Wire brings to the table is some great characters, and a massive overarching story that encompasses each seasons arcs and continuously builds on them. The characters themselves fill out more and fan out relationships until the whole thing becomes this great epic story of warring families and terrible betrayal. Actually, now that I think about it, betrayal seems to be a key theme everyone's always going behind each others backs in this show. It didn't really strike me while watching, but looking back the good guys and bad guys alike constantly screw each other. Not that there is clear cut good and bad. Sure, everyone sticks to their designated lawful/unlawful side of the fence, but all the main characters are definitely shades of gray rather than tones of black and white.

It' not all great though, while the characters and overall story are pretty great, the writing gets a little clumsy sometimes. Kima was a great character in the first season, but they had to telegraphed the crap out of everything that was going to happen to her, and then hammered the rest of her important traits every chance possible. Then they nerfed her character via storyline the rest of the show from season 2 onwards.

Furthermore, I never understood why Stringer Bell was the 2IC to Avon until much later on. In the first two seasons he's king bad-ass while Avon does very little of anything. Sure, they hint that maybe it's a Barksdale family history thing, but it's not something that gets explained until season 3.

I'm willing to forgive though. I mean, if I had to justify all the goofy stuff that happens between the good stuff in Lost, I'd need a week of essay posts. Besides, every thing in season 1 was worth it for the McQueen-being-sent-to-the-cooler style shot of McNulty on the boat at the very end. McNulty's such a wag.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

More than meets the eye.

I have a shaming admission to make: I now know more about trains than I cared to believe existed in the first place. I guess it all comes with the job, but its still embarrasing when I see a train and know what it is. And accidentally shout out its name like it's some kind of train bingo. And am naked in public except for a strategically placed train timetable.

Luckily, that doesn't happen too often, but I've often thought : What if I was in creative charge of Trainz?

Naturally I'd be merging it up with some other franchise and definitely that franchise would be Transformers (or Street Fighter, as mentioned previously). In honour of that, allow me to present what would be our main character: Turnout.

Turnout would be a noble Autobot, and while being a fine soldier, his key role would be support. Since his vehicle mode would be a SD40 Diesel engine (the current unofficial mascot engine of Trainz), he would be most useful moving shipments of supplies to the front lines and taking wounded teammates back to base.

Maybe he could be in a group, maybe The Freighterbots, that contain other kind of freight vehicles like a semi truck, and a cargo plane. Maybe they could merge into a bigger robot. Maybe that robot could be called Transportotron. Maybe.

As a special bonus What-if-Wednesday: What if Turnout was a Bayformer?

This hastily sketched mess should answer that question. Would he be the same as his original self? Hell no! No time for character development, we've got 40 minutes of military footage to fit in! And some gay dogs! Better give him a racist stereotype like the rest of the minor characters... Lets go with Mexican. So now he's always napping, carries around a giant robot sized bottle of tequila around with him for no explicable reason, and when he transforms into a train he shouts "ARRIBA ARRIBA UNDERLAY!". And probably at one point he can wear a roof like a sombrero or something.

Oh and lets give him rollerskates or something, because that's almost like being a train.

Fuck you Michael Bay.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The new kid in town...

This luckless bastard is Johnny "Lovebaby" D'Agostino, main character of the short comic "Johnny Lovebaby buys the farm".

Johnny's got himself in some trouble with the wrong people and now he's stuck in a four way game of Russian Roulette. The only way out is down the barrel of a gun. Hilarity ensues.

Johnny's personality is somewhat based on a guy I know, just who will forever remain a mystery. Lookwise he's not based on anyone in particular. He's a womanising lovable idiot who's always been on the edge of the underworld but never dabbled into it. He's pretty clueless and totally unlucky, but he does have an innate but underdeveloped understanding of numbers and probability. Kind of imagine Matt Damon in Good Will Hunting if he hadn't met Robin Williams and just used Minnie Driver for sex.

"Johnny Lovebaby buys the farm" is another comic I have mostly written but really need to get around to drawing up one of these days...