We were investigating a unknown and powerful source of wild magic in a Library, that was causing all other kinds of magic to run amok. This was unfortunate, as I play a Wizard named Theia

Theia: I cast Grease

DM: Okay. Everyone else make perception checks

*they all fail, apart from the Ranger*

DM: Theia is suddenly gone. Jaik (Ranger), you can see a vague outline where she once stood

Jaik: I reach out at feel the air

DM: You feel the fabric of her robe

Jaik, Chaotic Neutral and a huge flirt: I give a cheeky grope

Theia, a Colossal Lesbian who is on a quest to find her GF: Can I use my bonus action to slap him?

(she missed)

As I’ve said in the last post, I’ll be talking about the main characters a bit.

The protagonists, Jaike and Dalia, come from a mystical kind of beings known as Tenebrin.
On their home planet Tenebrae, the people of Tenebrin have lived peacefully for centuries, never interfering in outside affairs of others.
But nothing lasts forever and one day, the planet Tenebrae was annihilated by another kind, the Phot.

For what reason or purpose it seemed unknown, the calamity came as a shining beam of light, destroying the planet and it’s people in an instant.
The Tenebrin where no more…except for the one that survived. Whether by luck or fate, Jaike was spared along with his ship Jackal.
Having lost his whole planet and its people, his grief was immeasurable, he has lost everything.
Filled with anger he swore revenge on those responsible, the wretched Phot. Thus his journey begins.

But Jaike was not the only remaining Tenebrin, one called Dalia was alive as well. Long ago Dalia left her home in desire to explore the wast world beyond hers, something uncommon for Tenebrins who have always lived on their planet.
On her own, with her ship Dahl, she traveled from one place to another, discovering new things along the way.
The news of her planet’s demise came as a sudden shock. Confused and in disbelief, she sets out to find the truth of this.
To her dismay this was everything but a lie, her home was gone, vanished into dark abyss.
On her way to this revelation she stumbled upon the Phot, who recognized her for what she is and attacked.
Having nothing left, the only thing she could do is run.

That’s it for the introductions, you will be able to find out the rest of this story in the game, hopefully.

Interesting to note is that this was not how I originally planned the story and that it went through a few iterations.
Without going too much into details, originally all the characters where supposed to be human and the events would revolve around some kind of powerful magical artifact.
But as the story further developed in my head, it became something else.

I always wanted to do something with fantastical beings,
something undefined and unknown that I could build from the ground up, I think it’s more fun and interesting that way.

The character designs come from me wanting to make something outlandish and unique with the theme being darkness of space or to be more specific, black holes.
That’s where their name comes from as well, with tenebrae meaning darkness in Latin.

The mentioned opposing race, Phot will have the theme of stars or rather stars within darkness. Their name simply comes from light particles, photons.

I’m not an artist myself, so I can tell you it took some effort to get the art to be the way it’s now and even that is nothing special.
The full body portraits silhouette was done by tracing the outline of some 3d models found within a tool meant for creating drawing references.
However all further editing, drawing clothing, coloring and shading was done without any tracing or reference.
Name of the tool used for those initial references is Design Doll. Basically a digital version of those wooden mannequin miniatures some artists use.

I got stuck on the shading for a while, but I managed to get it to look at least serviceable in the end, I think.

All of these sprites are still not final though, I keep tweaking them constantly in hope of improvement.

Worth mentioning is that the dialog portraits will feature some different facial expressions. I think it’ll add a bit to the conversation and help in better conveying character’s emotions.

Something I didn’t mention, though you might have already noticed in the gameplay videos, is that the characters posses special powers that are represented in the gameplay.
The main power being energy absorption, which ties into the theme of black holes.

Next post I’ll return to game related progress. Thanks for reading!

Late Cuts 4

23 Pages, 7 x 8.5 Inches, One Colour Risograph, Edition of 50, 2014

Featuring Contributors:

Olivia Meek
Rob Ondzik
Kurtis Wilson
Courtney Garvin
Justin Gradin
Logan Sturrock
Ainsley Willow
Sangito Bigalow
Shallom Johnson
Mel Paget
Sara Wylie
Spicy Man
Mike Lachman
Sharona Franklin
Spicy Man’s Homie
Nick Howe
April Rivera Johnson
Juli Majer
Justin Gradin
Melanie Coles
Jaik Puppyteeth
Eight Oaks

To be released at the Vancouver Art/Book Fair, this Saturday and Sunday 12pm-5pm at the Vancouver Art Gallery[free to the public]