Robots, Dragons, & Other Nerdiness
A not-free digital issue of ATOMIC ROBO (v1.6) made it into the Top 20 on iTunes. Very cool. I was very please that v1.1 made the list, but keep in mind that it was free, so there was no barrier at all to downloading it. The fact that so many people have bought an actual issue of Robo is very rewarding.
-Atomic Robo on WIT WAR. I tend to not post these because John comments here and on the Robo.com blog. Sort of incestuous. But this one’s not too gushing, so I think it’s safe.
-And so I don’t have to list every single review, RED5 COMICS has compiled a nice little list right here.
Because I’m kind of a dumbass, I scheduled a signing on the same weekend that I’m doing a local con. This is what I get for not paying closer attention to my calendar, LOL! In any case, I’m sure both events are going to be a really fun time. on Saturday May 30th, I will be signing at Friendly Neighborhood Comics. So if you’re in the Bellingham area come on by and hang out! On Sunday May 31st I’ll be back in New Hampshire, hangin’ with my boys from Double Midnight at the Granite State Comicon. This reminds me that my sub folder at the shop is probably exploding. I don’t read many comics, but I haven’t been to the shop in forever.
For reasons I can’t explain, for the last week or so I’ve been nostalgic for my original Atomic Robo design sketches. Robo the skinny pip-squeak, Robo the sort of muscly fit guy, Robo the giant hulk because Brian didn’t mention that he wore clothes until the second week of our collaboration, Robo the robotic Rocketeer. Also Robo the collection of 300 head designs that all sort of look the same. Sigh.
It was fun to revisit them. They also inspired me to do a little sketching. I was reading the preview to JAN’S ATOMIC HEART online the other day, and i think that was what kicked off the nostalgia-fest. In the book the main character is stuck in a remote operated robot body, while his real body is repaired following a bad accident. Of course all is not as it seems. Anyway, it got me thing about robots in a non-Robo way. What would it be like to wake up and find you consciousness downloaded into a non-living body? and not one designed for combat, or space exploration. Just a simple prosthetic. I think there could be a really fun comic in that. Well, yeah . . .there is. It’s called JAN’S ATOMIC HEART. But it just gave me an idea for something too . . here look at this while I write some stuff down.
Okay I’m back.
My other geeky news is not really news at all. But I’ve been playing Dungeons & Dragons for a few weeks now with a great group of guys. Many months ago Wizards of The Coast released the 4th Edition of the D&D rules, claiming to have radically overhauled the game and streamlined it for much easier play -which is code for “we made it as much like World of Warcraft as we could without getting sued so maybe those people will get off the computer and play our game.” Not likely. At it’s core, despite what several people have told me, the mechanics of the new game are almost identical to the mechanics of the old game. In many ways the streamlining is an improvement, but in many ways it is also a limitation. We had a good session last week as most of us are getting the hang of the new system and things were pretty fast and furious.
In most RPG’s I’ve played I end up being the “tank” -the thug who just wades in and soaks up hits, while the guys who were more motivated to learn the hinky magic rules, or tech spec rules, or other hinky, obtuse, retarded system for something that should be simple, make everyone go “ooh” and “ahh” with the complicated bit of whatever that their mastery of said retarded system allows them to do. For me, most turns in an RPG can be summed up with “I bash/shoot/stab/clobber, that goon/monster/alien/ghost with my blaster/sword/rock/tommygun.” Lather, rinse, repeat. And for the most part that is my idea of a good time when it comes to RPGs.
But for this game I decided to stretch my wings and try something new. A leadership role. So I’m playing an Elven Shaman. Sounds gay. I know. But what this guy does is summon this spirit companion who basically does all the dirty work for him, while he hangs back and occasionally heals people, or shoots screaming cats from his Panther Cannon. (I could explain that, but i think it’s a richer experience to just leave it to your collective imagination.) I also see dead people and talk to spirits. Spoooooookie, wooo. In theory the Spirit Companion is badass -I summon him and this shadowy wraith oozes out of the floor and tears shit up in a whirling mass of teeth and claws. But it’s weird knowing that while he’s doing that the character who is “me” is just sort of hanging back behind the fighters, leaning on his spear and stifling his yawns.
Oh well, live and learn. When the VERY AWESOME setting of EBERRON comes out I’ll be building a Warforged Ranger -and that will kick some serious ass.
What’s really cool is this projection map that our DM busted out the other night. You can zoom in and out, rotate and drag the map, and do all sorts of cool stuff to the player characters. Here are some pics of the map, the Shaman, and the Warforged.
-Flatulene. Gosh I love Dave Johnson.
-Give ‘Em Hell Malone. I like the noir feel of this semi-low budget lookin’ thing.
-As a child I thought everything that Hanna Barbera did was cheap-ass bullshit. The cartoons I watched when there was nothing good on. For some reason it brings me comfort in my old age though.