Thursday, December 31, 2009

Hardware Blues

So far, the holidays have been a major bust when it comes to my game.  The biggest downer occurred when my hard drive completely crapped out on me.  I mean it was DEAD.  Having had problems like this before, I routinely back up my documents on an external hard drive and even uploaded them into the “cloud.”  This time around, however, I discovered two very important weaknesses: a) backups can become corrupted and therefore useless, and b) it’s a good idea to backup your art assets as well as the finished documents the assets go into.  In short, cover your assets.

So, after installing an entirely new hard drive and reinstalling various programs, I discovered that I had lost almost all of the art I had done for the Ovid Incident (except for whatever was already in the document itself).  This means all the mutants and characters I had created are gone unless I had already put them into the Ovid Incident document (which had been safely backed up).

It was very demoralizing to say the least.

Along with all the busyness of the holidays (family, drinking, getting bailed out of jail), I haven’t gotten much done.  On the bright side, however, the New Year is upon us with its promise of hope and improved hardware performance.  Although I’ve learned some valuable lessons, I’m glad to say goodbye to 2009.

For those of us at the Imperium Chronicles, I wish you a Happy New Year!

Monday, December 07, 2009

The Crimson Kiss

Before writing the Imperium Chronicles RPG, I originally created an online graphic novel and (shorter) online comic based on the universe that would become the game. Although both have been available through my website, I decided to publish the latter (called Magnus Black: Born in the Grave) on DriveThruComics so people could download the PDF. Several people have downloaded it, but since the comic’s free, that’s really no surprise. On the other hand, H1N1 (Swine Flu) is also free, so I shouldn’t assume people actually like the comic.

I love the graphic novel/comic format because it combines story telling with a visual media. Films (live action and animation) also combine these elements, but I lack the money, skill, or time to make movies. Truth be told, I also lack the artistic skill to create a good comic. I’ve always depended on software like Poser and Photoshop to compensate for my lack of drawing ability. Even so, I’ve been playing around with the idea of writing a script that a real artist would then turn into something people could read. This is actually pretty common: there are countless comics writers who can’t draw a straight line to save their lives and plenty of artists who have trouble signing their own name (unless it’s in some sort of calligraphy).

So, besides working on the Ovid Incident (the adventure module for Imperium Chronicles), I’ve also started writing a script for an Imperium comic called “The Crimson Kiss.” It’s based on an adventure idea for the game, which I think would make a pretty good comic. Coincidentally, I first mentioned the Crimson Kiss in this blog entry which just happens to be the most searched post on my blog, apparently due to the words “naked elf women” in the title.

I won’t go into much detail right now about the script, but I will say its protagonist, Rowan Ramus, was included in my most recent supplement, Home Worlds, and in a story fragment I wrote here. He’s a Dahl outcast who’s teamed up with a Gordian named Orkney Fugg and a robot named Gen. They’re hired to investigate attacks on some merchant ships that eventually lead them to a surprising discovery. I’ll try to keep you posted about how it’s coming along.