Thursday, August 1, 2013

[Q&A] Andrew Collas (Zenith Comics: HEROIC)

[19:12] <+Andrew_Collas> Ok, hi everyone, my name is Andrew Collas and I am the writer of HEROIC, a comic we are Kickstarting about bringing heroic ideals back to superhero comics.
[19:12] <+Andrew_Collas> (done?)
[19:12] <~Dan> (Sure. :) )
[19:12] <~Dan> Thanks, Andrew!
[19:12] <~Dan> What's the premise of the setting?
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[19:13] <+Andrew_Collas> Well it's not really a setting, it's more of a universe.  The premise of the series is essentially what if Eisenhower's (forgive my spelling errors) warning of the Military Industrial Complex happened to control superheroes as well.
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[19:14] <~Dan> (Howdy, egyptian!)
[19:14] <+Andrew_Collas> The idea being that what would superheroes be like if they were under direct control of the same mentality that controls arms production (done)
[19:15] <~Dan> Is this a one-source superpower setting (like Wild Cards, for example), or is it a full-blown anything goes setting like the Marvel Universe?
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[19:16] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Jupiter!)
[19:16] <+Andrew_Collas> Good question.  Well it is a bit of both.  On the surface it would appear to be a grab bag, but on a meta level it is all from one source, but that's a rather involved concept that we don't tackle out of the gate. (done)
[19:17] <~Dan> Hmm... Sort of a "Power Cosmic" sort of thing? Or is that too much of a spoiler?
[19:18] <+Andrew_Collas> I don't mind being a bit more informative here ;)  I write in the concept of Quantum Reality, the idea that everything and anything is possible.  Now without going into too many details, something happens far far into the future of the Earth that ends up sending that "Q Energy" back in time, to the begining, leaking bits as it went, causing "origins"....
[19:19] <+Andrew_Collas> ...and what have you as it went.  Again though, this isn't really within the scope of the story, it is more a writer's tool for making sure the rules are followed if anyone else were to come on to write stories for the Zenith Universe (done)
[19:19] * ~Dan nods
[19:20] <+Seraioli> Is the core of the comic more centered around solving a kind of cosmic mystery like that? Or is it more centered around navigating politics and finding a tactful peace with people and politics?
[19:20] <~Dan> So a radioactive spider bites a teenager, but it's really the Q Energy that gives him his powers?
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[19:21] <+Andrew_Collas> Seraioli: The first story arc is about the political aspects of the world.  It is essentially a struggle between this aforementioned Complex and a small resistance that is trying to expose the truth.
[19:22] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan: Exactly, or a bunch of soldiers are walking through a Serbian grave yard, one is rambling on about Vampires when a bit of Q Energy hits a grave and rewrites reality to have that manifest.
[19:22] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
[19:22] <+Andrew_Collas> (wait not done)
[19:22] <+Andrew_Collas> lol
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[19:23] <+Andrew_Collas> So essentially ANYTHING is possible, so long as 2 conditions are met, 1 the Q energy is present and a consciousness is present to manifest an idea.  But again, this is outside the perspective of the first story arc (done now for real :) )
[19:24] <~Dan> I'm assuming that this means that super-tech is possible as well. If that's the case, are such things one-offs by nature, or can they be mass produced?
[19:26] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan, depends on who it is.  The head of the Complex for example is Doctor Phineas Titanski (aka Doc Titan) who is a super scientist who pretty much designed the entier Allied super solider effort during WW2.  Through his science he has created Titan Industries, and made a LOT of money over the decades off of his inventions and such, but...
[19:27] <+Andrew_Collas> ... there is another character that might show up in arc 2 or 3 called the Beetle, who has a super power to invent something once.  He can never repeat his inventions and they themselves are like magic, since no engineers have successfully retro-engineered his inventions.
[19:27] <~Dan> Rube Goldberg devices?
[19:27] <+Andrew_Collas> But again, that's not the focus of the story, the story is a focus on identity and heroic behaviour.  What is a hero?  Who are these people on both sides who are calling themselves heroes but are antagonists of each other?  Etc...
[19:28] <+Silverlion> In other words Q energy is something of a psychoreactive substances that is shaped by the person...?
[19:28] <+Andrew_Collas> Not quite Rube Goldberg, just defying the laws of physics and should work.
[19:28] <+Andrew_Collas> Yes Silverlion, it is essentially the energy of creation that interacts with the observer.
[19:28] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
[19:28] <+Silverlion> Cool.
[19:29] <+Silverlion> What heroes are we going to see in the first story? What are their drives/goals?
[19:30] <~Dan> Hmm... How do you reconcile the questioning of the nature of heroics with your stated goal of returning to old-school heroism? Or am I missing something there/
[19:31] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan the big mistake a lot of fans of "old school" heroics is that they just thrust them at you.  Singing the praises of the Silver Age (ugh  not my cup of tea) and then wonder why they only have a niche audience.  For me, what I want to do is start us off in that darker, grittier and grimmer reality that superheroes have become....
[19:32] <+Andrew_Collas> .. .and the slowly have them change the world to a more heroic behaviour.  Essentially establish a new Golden Age that isn't just being exactly like what came before, but changing their world by their actions and ideals.
[19:32] <+Andrew_Collas> If that makes sense (done)
[19:32] <~Dan> I think so. You want a world of higher ideals created rather than being the status quo.
[19:33] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan: 'Zactly.  It means nothing if it isn't earned.
[19:33] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
[19:33] <~Dan> Did you see Sil's question?
[19:33] <+Andrew_Collas> Nope, but now I do
[19:33] <+Silverlion> See, that's how I always saw the Silver Age--their was darkness there, but the heroes did something about it.
[19:34] <+Andrew_Collas> Silverlion: The script is up for those who would like to read it at the Kickstarter btw.  But to answer your question, the story opens with the funeral of the Guardsman, described as the "greatest hero of the greatest generation", essentially a Superman type.
[19:35] <+Andrew_Collas> Lady America is about to speak at his funeral and then after being a national hero since WW2 (there is a reason WW2 plays into this SO much) she instead has a break and retires.
[19:35] <+Andrew_Collas> Now do you guys want me to keep going?  This enters spoiler territory from the first  issue.  I am happy to keep going, but don't want to ruin anyone's discovery :)
[19:35] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
[19:36] <+Silverlion> (I've read it, but I want to make sure people who read the Q&A get some preview :D)
[19:36] <~Dan> I don't mind, but remember that folks will be reading the log. I'll leave that up to you, Andrew. :)
[19:36] <+Andrew_Collas> Okay I will spoil, since the script is there for those who want to read, they can skip this part...
[19:36] <+Andrew_Collas> (SPOILER PART BEGINS)
[19:37] <+Andrew_Collas> When she returns to her home, Doc Titan shows up, tries to convince her to unretire and then when she refuses, drops a code word that essentially freezes her in her tracks.
[19:37] <+Andrew_Collas> He then produces a gun, shots her and makes a call to "activate #23".
[19:38] <+Andrew_Collas> Oh he also shoots her dog and says "We'll need another dog too."   People hate that he shoots the dog btw ;)
[19:38] <+Andrew_Collas> From there we get to a weird situation where we learn that there is a factory for lack of a better word (Nursery?) growing clones of Lady America.
[19:39] <+Andrew_Collas> A scientist shows up for 23, when he learns that one went, be bluffs that it is a typo and get 32.
[19:39] <+Andrew_Collas> Naturally he doesn't get away clean, there is some action and the long and short is a 15 year old equivalent clone is woken up and on the run.
[19:39] <~Dan> Is that the character we see pictured on the Kickstarter page?
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[19:40] <+Andrew_Collas> Doc Titan sends his MIB group called the Watch after her.  She fights them off with only instinct guiding her, but at the very end of it she is cornerd.  That when Invictus, Pilgrim and Devil Dog arrive, they are the resistence and they are here to save her.
[19:40] <+Andrew_Collas> Lady America is all over the Kickstarter, number 32 is only shown there as a sketch at present.
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[19:40] <+Andrew_Collas> That's essentially the first issue in a nutshell
[19:40] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, StoneOfSummer!)
[19:40] <+Andrew_Collas> (END OF SPOILER SECTION)
[19:40] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
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[19:42] <~Dan> How would you describe the general scale of the superheroics we'll be seeing?
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[19:43] <~Dan> (As in street level, cosmic, etc.)
[19:44] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan: Escalating ;)  We start at this very middle-of-the-road level, but as the story progresses we start getting into the world class stuff.  So a transition from say... New Warriors/New Mutants to eventually Avengers/Justice League.
[19:44] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
[19:44] <+GenoFoxx> so Doc Titan is the Dr. Doom/ Dr Manhattan of the first generation?
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[19:45] <~Dan> (Howdy, Wondy, Blaster!)
[19:45] <+Andrew_Collas> Geno: Not at all, he was more the Hank Pymm of the Golden Age, developed the super soldier program, tested it on himself no less and has been running the show ever since.  When it comes to superheroes.  The world sees him as a hero and a good guy.
[19:45] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
[19:46] <+GenoFoxx> but in reality?
[19:46] <~Dan> You mention the quantum event in the future. Is the premise that history was "our" history until that event "re-wrote" it?
[19:47] <+Andrew_Collas> Geno:  Without spoiling more, he would seem to be more of a villain to us "behind the scenes".  I would like to give you my favourite Doc Titan quote;
[19:47] <+Andrew_Collas> "You just have to have a bigger vision. If you think of humanity as an organism, the lives of several thousand people are no more significant than a few skin cells. It's not about being emotionally detached: on the contrary, one must be completely emotionally committed to the fate of our species and our world. "
[19:47] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan: Possibly, it is unknown to the reader and possibly unknowable, the universe that was is gone and not to return.
[19:48] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
[19:48] * ~Dan nods
[19:48] <+GenoFoxx> until 20years later you have your Crisis/Flashpoint event :d
[19:49] <~Dan> I know we discussed this between ourselves a while back, but can you describe the capabilities of Lady America?
[19:49] <+GenoFoxx> :D
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[19:49] <+Andrew_Collas> Geno: LOL!  Anything is possible and if I am lucky enough to make a 20 year run out of this, I will be more than happy to run a Crisis ;)
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[19:50] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan:  She is raw potential.  She is the "best of humanity" at whatever it is she is trained to do.  Sadly she has been trained to be a soldier/super spy, so she is the best she can be at that.  Had she been trained to be a pianist, she would be the best of that, etc...
[19:50] <+Andrew_Collas> I wanted to avoid the sterotypical "super soldier" trap, but I also didn't want her flying around and blasting people with laser eyes... yet ;)
[19:50] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
[19:50] <~Dan> So not technically superhuman (yet)?
[19:51] <+GenoFoxx> So a female Doc Savage?
[19:51] <~Dan> Doc Titan sounds more like a creepy version of Doc Savage to me.
[19:51] <+Andrew_Collas> I don't know Doc Savage, so possibly?  Dan, yes and no, she is a well spring of human potential, fueled by the Titan Formula, which is unkowingly made from Q Energy... but I've said too much already ;) (done)
[19:52] <~Dan> Andrew_Collas: You must research Doc Savage ASAP.
[19:52] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan: Yes'sir!
[19:53] <+GenoFoxx> indeed
[19:53] <~Dan> One could argue that without Doc Savage (a classic pulp hero), there would be neither Superman nor Batman.
[19:53] <+Andrew_Collas> (I am enjoying this convo, I like talking about the things in my head ;) )
[19:53] <~Dan> (Good! That's the point. :) )
[19:53] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan you are correct sir, also without the Shadow, Dick Tracy, etc...
[19:54] <~Dan> Batman is basically Doc Savage crossed with the Shadow.
[19:54] <~Dan> But I digress, sorry. :)
[19:54] <+Andrew_Collas> LOL!
[19:54] <~Dan> (I love pulp heroes. :) )
[19:55] <+GenoFoxx> so Andrew_Collas the stories you're trying to tell are how we're going from the gritty Dark Ages of comics to the Golden Age?
[19:55] <~Dan> Actually, getting back on track, did the Zenith universe have a two-fisted pulp era? Or has it been full-blown superheroes all through history?
[19:57] <+GenoFoxx> or to to explain it in DC terms from the 20-21st centuries to the better future of the 30-31st centuries Legion of SuperHeroes?
[19:57] <+Andrew_Collas> I might have, the first "costumed" hero is the Grenadier, a Canadian from WW1, so I can see there being a daring adventurer stage.  Certainly in the late 50s and 60s, Doc Titan headed up Team Titan who were essentially a Johnny Quest, Challengers of the Unknown type of group, so pulp heroes probably did exist. (done)
[19:57] <+Silverlion> He does sound like a slightly mad Doc Savage
[19:57] * ~Dan nods
[19:58] <+Andrew_Collas> Geno:  Sort of.  My favourite period of superhero comics is 1975 - 1985...  Hell my love of the Golden Age is through the eyes of the All-Star Squadron and the Invaders comics of that era.
[19:58] <+Andrew_Collas> So for me, the ideals, heroism and what have you of the Golden Age, Silver Age and Bronze Age are great things, but storywise you have to tell them with a modern eye.
[19:59] <+Andrew_Collas> But I wouldn't make fun of them or mock them, I would rather blend them into a more modern story telling style.
[19:59] <~Dan> Does the re-written superheroic history go far back in time, though? IOW, was there a real Hercules type in ancient Greece? A real John Henry type in the 1800s?
[19:59] <+Andrew_Collas> I do not like when folks mock supers or crap on them, hence my dislike of the Boys. (done)
[19:59] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan: Yes.
[19:59] <+GenoFoxx> the Boys?
[19:59] <~Dan> Andrew_Collas: Cool. :)
[20:00] <+Andrew_Collas> The Q Energy goes all the way back to the begining, essentially from the end of time.  think of it as a comet, bleeding off bits as it goes.
[20:00] * ~Dan nods
[20:00] <+Andrew_Collas> Geno A comic by Garth Inis that pretty much shows his open hatred of superheroes.
[20:00] <+Andrew_Collas> (done)
[20:00] <+Andrew_Collas> sorry
[20:00] <+Andrew_Collas> Let me add to that
[20:01] <~Dan> (Oh, btw, Andrew, you don't necessarily have to give us a "(done)" unless there's a question pause or unless you're giving a really involved answer, unless you just want to. :) )
[20:01] <+Andrew_Collas> I LOVE Mystery Men or the Tick.  The reason is that no matter how many jokes they make, they have an underlying LOVE of superheroes and are making light of the tropes, but not debasing the idea of superheroes.
[20:01] <+Andrew_Collas> (Got ya ;) )
[20:02] <+GenoFoxx> SPOON!
[20:02] <+Andrew_Collas> So for me... love of superheroes and respect for them being a truly modern and American mythology is important, then you can poke fun.  If you just don't like them and rip them apart, I am not interested in that.
[20:02] <~Dan> Yeah, deconstruction has grown rather tiresome for me as well.
[20:02] <+Andrew_Collas> Amen
[20:05] <+GenoFoxx> so going with that Q-energy through history could the tall tales of American history or for that matter be manifestations of said Q-energy?
[20:05] <~Dan> Actually, that makes me appreciate the statement that HEROIC seems to be making.
[20:05] <+Andrew_Collas> Geno: I think today I had a conversation that answers that point well.  A friend said "Why Lady America, why not Lady Canada?" to which I said "Say that outloud again."  We both laughed.
[20:06] <~Dan> True heroes rising like a pheonix out of the grim-and-gritty ashes, so to speak.
[20:06] <+Andrew_Collas> The American concept of heroic destiny and getting things done really drives the early superhero.  And to be honest, red, white and blue, stars and eagles really are great window dressing.
[20:06] <+Andrew_Collas> A lot more than my native red and white and maple leafs ;)
[20:06] * ~Dan chuckles
[20:06] <+Andrew_Collas> But yes, the "tall tales" could easily be that.
[20:07] <+Andrew_Collas> There are "clusters" of Q Energy events, and certainly the time of say 1938 to 1942 ish would have been one.
[20:07] <~Dan> Do you give a reason why the presence of Q Energy hasn't driven history completely off the rails?
[20:07] <+GenoFoxx> does Q-energy affect only humans or do animal get the effect if said human includes them?
[20:07] <+Andrew_Collas> Hence the large number of supers and villains that show up at that time.  Since then we haven't had another one... but there are reasons for that ;)
[20:07] <~Dan> (Or, rather, do you have a reason that you haven't revealed? :) )
[20:08] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan: Well it isn't important to the story really, but you could say checks & balances, if Hitler was a manifestation of Q Energy, well the Allies we an equal response... etc...  I don't see the need to get into Grant Morrison level so analysis on this though, it isn't the focus of the tale.
[20:09] * ~Dan nods
[20:09] <+Andrew_Collas> Geno: Interesting question and I will answer by only saying yes and no.
[20:09] <~Dan> Sorry. I just love that sort of thing. :)
[20:09] <+GenoFoxx> from out of the prehistoric past....Captain Dinosaur!!
[20:09] <+Andrew_Collas> Oh man, you have no idea !  Trust me Geno, if I can build this universe ... there is a story to be told ... ;)
[20:09] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan: I know you do.
[20:09] <~Dan> :)
[20:10] <+Andrew_Collas> Here let me tell you the story of the Q Energy, and the previous universe, shall I?
[20:10] <+Seraioli> I might raise the question that it seems that this type of analysis seems to be what people gravitate naturally to, and maybe it deserves a bigger place in the narrative than it currently has? What's the benefit of suppressing this information now and opening it up later on? Just a curiosity question!
[20:10] <~Dan> Speaking of "Captain Dinosaur", how "gonzo" is the setting? Is it a traditional superhero universe with aliens, mole men, dinosaurs, etc.?
[20:10] <~Dan> And please do, Andrew, re: story. :)
[20:11] <+Andrew_Collas> Sera: If you read the first issue of Fantastic Four and they laid out the entire cosmic hierachy of the marvel universe, would you feel connected to those characters?  No, probably not, but as you gained bits and pieces of the stories and eventually saw the backstory unfold, you feel more of a connection to it.
[20:11] <+Andrew_Collas> At least in my opinion.
[20:11] <+Beelzedude> (good night, people.)
[20:12] <~Dan> (Bye, Beelz!)
[20:12] <+GenoFoxx> (goodnight Beelzedude
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[20:12] <+Andrew_Collas> Q Energy first Dan, then gonzo second. (Night beelzedude)
[20:12] <+Andrew_Collas> Q Energy (Somewhat spoliery)
[20:13] <+Andrew_Collas> In the past universe there was this vast intergalactic empire... the Valeks.  They were essentially like Starbucks, they found what a race was good at, subjugated them (what they were good at) and had the do their thing for the benefit of the Empire.
[20:13] <+Andrew_Collas> The human race seemed to be really good at imagination.  Creative thought. Beyond logic.
[20:13] <+Andrew_Collas> So they turned Earth into a giant lab to do science of that nature, explore ideas.
[20:14] <+Andrew_Collas> Then, millenia later the last Empress decided that since she now ruled the entire known universe, the only thing left for her to do was become a cosmic being.
[20:14] <+Andrew_Collas> So she set earth to that task.
[20:14] <+Andrew_Collas> They succeeded and harnessed a particle of creation, a Q (Quantum) particle for lack of a better word.
[20:14] <+Andrew_Collas> BUT
[20:14] <~Dan> (And then hilarity ensued!)
[20:15] <+Andrew_Collas> By being exposed to it, they started to see other possibilities of reality, including ones where they weren't slaves, and ones where HUMANS ruled the universe, etc...
[20:15] <+Andrew_Collas> Deciding that the Empress should not have this and that the Human race should be free, they decided to send it back to the beginning of the universe and let it rewrite reality.
[20:16] <+Andrew_Collas> As it traveled back through time, never leaving Earth btw, it dropped of bits and pieces of Q energy.  Sometimes enough to change one thing, other times large enough to cause a massive effect (the Golden Age superhero boom).
[20:17] <+Andrew_Collas> A MUCH larger bit wiped out the dinosaurs, but the vast majority of it went to the begining of time and turned Earth into a planet of unlimited potential and possibility.
[20:17] <+GenoFoxx> ((Tunguska Impact :D))
[20:17] <+Andrew_Collas> Yes Geno, why not? :)
[20:17] <~Dan> So humanity owes them a big thanQ.
[20:17] <+Andrew_Collas> It is ham fisted sure, but it provides an answer to the "Why is Earth so important?" question that always plagues comics/sci fi.
[20:17] <+Andrew_Collas> LOL! @Dan
[20:17] <~Dan> :D
[20:18] <+Andrew_Collas> As for the Gonzo question, not so much, I am not a fan of slapstick, schlock or puns ;)
[20:18] <~Dan> That's rather clever, actually, re: the premise. Well done!
[20:18] <+Andrew_Collas> And now you all know the secret of the Zenith Universe :)
[20:18] <+GenoFoxx> ((other than the obvious it's the only planet we know with fun stuff on it ))
[20:18] <+Andrew_Collas> well yes genofoxx ;)
[20:19] <~Dan> Well, maybe "gonzo" isn't the right word... I'm asking whether the Zenith Universe is generally weird apart from the presence of superheroes.
[20:20] <~Dan> Like, Marvel Earth has its Savage Land, its Mole Men, etc... Does Zenith Earth have such things?
[20:20] <+Andrew_Collas> Parts of it are... I would say we are somewhere between the DC idea of "it's an alternate world...heavily" and the Marvel "world outside your window" but there aren't aliens walking the street or intergalactic embassies, etc...
[20:20] <+Andrew_Collas> Well Dan, yes and no
[20:20] <+Andrew_Collas> It is hard to have those things without saying "It's your version of the Savage World, etc..." BUT...
[20:21] <+Andrew_Collas> I have read a LOT of the "weird history" of  our own world, and that intrigues me.  the Piri Rhys map, the Thule Society and the Vrill, etc... Hollow Earth, etc...
[20:21] <+Andrew_Collas> That's the kind of stuff I want to draw on, including ancient ideas like the Annunaki, etc...
[20:22] <+Andrew_Collas> But for HEROIC it is all focused on the fight between Doc Titan and the resistance. :)
[20:23] <~Dan> Oh, certainly. I'm just always intrigued by the possibilites of a given setting. :)
[20:23] <+Andrew_Collas> I should mention I am in a Kickstarter right now (with only 10 days left) to get the first issue done.
[20:23] <+Andrew_Collas> Anyone mind if I link it here?
[20:24] <~Dan> Please do!
[20:24] <+Andrew_Collas> (Link:
[20:24] <+Andrew_Collas> While it looks like a lot of money, I want to make it clear, I get nothing from this, not 1 penny.  The funds needed are based on paying the art team, printing the books and shipping them out.
[20:25] <+Andrew_Collas> A fool's errand perhaps, but it is my passion so I have no choice but to try :)
[20:25] <~Dan> I never see chasing one's dream as a "fool's errand". :)
[20:26] <+Andrew_Collas> Why thank you sir.
[20:26] <+Andrew_Collas> So, more questions? :)
[20:27] <~Dan> Let's see... Is there magic of any sort in the setting?
[20:27] <+GenoFoxx> so are all your characters set? or can you take suggestions?
[20:27] <+Andrew_Collas> Of course, some Q Energy would have touched someone sometime and boom, magic became part of our reality!
[20:28] <+GenoFoxx> or are willing to take suggestions
[20:28] <+Andrew_Collas> For the comic?  Well yes, I have written the script at present.  But what did you have in mind?
[20:28] <+GenoFoxx> it might seem silly...Captain Dinosaur and Dr. Deinonychus
[20:29] <+GenoFoxx> the Immortal Man and Vandal Savage of the age of reptilse
[20:29] <+GenoFoxx> reptiles
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[20:29] <+Silverlion> Hehe. :D
[20:30] <+Andrew_Collas> Oh I see, well again this sort of idea is outside the perspective of HEROIC, thought later I am planning an anthology series called ZENITH COMICS PRESENTS were writers can try doing one off short stories of various characters etc... so that would be the place for someone to write that sort of idea.
[20:30] <+Silverlion> I must say that Dr. Dinosaur is awesome in Atomic Robo
[20:30] <+Andrew_Collas> I do love him, he is well written and a lot of fun Silverlion
[20:30] <+Andrew_Collas> But then Atomic Robo is just amazing!
[20:30] <+GenoFoxx> I've never read it
[20:30] <+GenoFoxx> honest
[20:30] <+Andrew_Collas> I highly recommend it, there is an rpg coming out for it too I think
[20:31] <~Dan> There is. We did a Q&A about it, in fact.
[20:31] <+GenoFoxx> :O
[20:31] <+Andrew_Collas> Oh no, Doctor Dinosaur is a talking velocoraptor, doesn't wear a costume or anything, but I'm not here to schill for Atomic Robo  ;)
[20:31] <+Silverlion> Dr. Dinosaur is kinda one of AR's villains, not an effective...
[20:31] <~Dan> (Link:
[20:31] <+Silverlion> but a villain.
[20:32] *** Bill is now known as Captain_Raptor
[20:32] <&Captain_Raptor> !
[20:32] <~Dan> Andrew, do I remember correctly that the Zenith Universe was originally going to be an RPG setting?
[20:33] <~Dan> (I know we discussed this, but I don't recall the specifics.)
[20:33] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan and still will be, after a fashion
[20:33] <+Andrew_Collas> We wanted to do it, but realized that to tell the universe as a setting, would spoil the comics.  We can't reveal the secrets in an RPG supplement and then try to tell that story later, seems a bit bassackwards.
[20:34] * ~Dan nods
[20:34] <+Andrew_Collas> So for now, I focus on the comics, and am creating a setting called Century City for SUPERS! Revised Edition, but no plans to make the Zenith Universe whole cloth.  Century City might be a bit like Earth 2 for the Zenith Universe though ;)
[20:36] <~Dan> :)
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[20:36] <+GenoFoxx> you mean merged int Earth 1 at the end of Crisis thus causing all sorts of headaches for the continuity of the DCU?
[20:36] <~Dan> (Howdy, Squide!)
[20:36] <~Dan> And is SUPERS! your game?
[20:37] <+Andrew_Collas> Geno: Like many writers of comics I love the idea of parallel Earths.  But I also loved the idea of Hypertime, which directly lead to the concept of Q Energy, which means the Zenith Universe has .... drum roll please.... Quantum Realities.
[20:37] <+sprakk> is it normal to have a fever that sits at 39,6C even after taking 1 tylenol and 2 aspirin ? (not the strongest doses individually, but still)
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[20:37] <+Andrew_Collas> Yes Walt and I bought SUPERS! from Beyond Belief Games
[20:38] <~Dan> (sprakk: Q&A in progress. #rpgnet2 is open for general chat. :) )
[20:38] <+sprakk> Dan: oh, sorry! :)
[20:38] <~Dan> (No worries!)
[20:38] <+GenoFoxx> I love alternate realities as well
[20:38] <+Silverlion> I can't wait to see Supers Revised!
[20:39] <+Andrew_Collas> Well do one of these for that, I promise, but this is about HEROIC!  I handle the comics, Walt handles the RPGs ;)
[20:39] <~Dan> Fair enough. :)
[20:39] <+Silverlion> Coolios :D
[20:39] <+Andrew_Collas> BUT, I can say this
[20:39] <~Dan> I do have to ask, though, if you think of your characters in terms of RPG stats. :)
[20:40] <+Andrew_Collas> Anyone who pledges on the KS for the comic tonight, in this chat, $5+, will get a free product from Hazard Studio, our RPG arm. :)
[20:40] <+Andrew_Collas> Dan:  I don't
[20:40] <+GenoFoxx> :(
[20:40] <~Dan> Cool. :)
[20:41] <+Andrew_Collas> While all of my stories grew out of years of rpgs, when I started writing the universe, I realized that rpg world and characters are very very different beasts than comic books.
[20:41] <~Dan> What's wrong, GenoFoxx?
[20:41] <+GenoFoxx> he doesn't think of his characters in rpg terms
[20:41] <+Andrew_Collas> Geno, you gotta let me finish man ;)
[20:42] <+Andrew_Collas> EVERY character in the Zenith Universe has been stated as either FASERIP, BASH, SUPERS! and even V&V at some point.
[20:42] <+Silverlion> Heh. I don't think of mine that way, I do think of them as characters first, anything else supers.
[20:42] <+Andrew_Collas> BUT when I am writing, I don't think of them as stat based creatures, but as living breathing people who have motivations and such.
[20:42] <+Silverlion> Exactly :D
[20:43] <+Silverlion> (of course I do that for RPG characters.)
[20:43] <+GenoFoxx> ok, my bad
[20:43] <+Andrew_Collas> LOL!  Not at all Genofoxx, your concern was valid :)
[20:43] <+GenoFoxx> but I'm a gearhead....I mostly think of mecha and how to stat them
[20:44] <+Andrew_Collas> Ah... see I am so not, hence my inability to get into games like Champions or M&M, just not the way my brain works.
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[20:44] <+Andrew_Collas> That said, I have to say...
[20:44] <~Dan> (Howdy, KJ! Q&A in progress! #rpgnet2 open for general chat. :) )
[20:45] <+Andrew_Collas> With all the focus of questions on the Q Energy in this conversation, there is NO doubt I am in a room full of rpgers!  :)
[20:45] <~Dan> Indeed. :)
[20:45] <+Andrew_Collas> Oh I love it :)
[20:46] <+Andrew_Collas> No one has asked me what my influences are, or how I see the modern comic, etc... this has been a very "How does it work?" Q&A and that is refreshing :)
[20:46] <+GenoFoxx> well what are your influences
[20:46] <+GenoFoxx> ;)
[20:46] <+Andrew_Collas> LOL!
[20:46] <~Dan> How do you see the modern comic?
[20:47] <+Andrew_Collas> The Elementals, The American, 1975 to 1985 in comics and just good storytelling :)
[20:47] <+Andrew_Collas> I see it as a mess Dan
[20:47] <~Dan> Heh. :)
[20:48] <+Andrew_Collas> Everytime a movie comesout, the comic resets to zero, despite sales showing sales spikes are on back issues/tpbs not current monthly.  So we lose progress and evolution of our characters.
[20:48] <+Andrew_Collas> They constantly reset to zero
[20:48] <+Andrew_Collas> It makes me very unhappy
[20:49] <~Dan> As you know, Andrew, you're welcome to hang out with us and discuss your comic as long as you like; however, is there anything you'd like to mention in the time we have left in the "official" Q&A that hasn't come up yet?
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[20:50] <+Andrew_Collas> Nothing that hasn't been covered other that I need your support.  Sorry to beg, but the realities of paying artists forces me to go to crowd-funding, which means I have to play the beggar a bit too. :)
[20:50] <+Andrew_Collas> That said, how long so we have left?
[20:51] <~Dan> 10 minutes. Officially. :)
[20:51] <+Andrew_Collas> Rodger dodger
[20:51] <~Dan> (Howdy, LeftWingPenguin!)
[20:51] <+Andrew_Collas> So, anymore questions lads and ladies?
[20:51] <~Dan> What's your favorite comic?
[20:51] <+LeftWingPenguin> Hi Dan, what's up?
[20:52] <~Dan> Finishing up a Q&A with Andrew Collas, author of the forthcoming HEROIC comic. :)
[20:52] *** Andrew_Collas has quit IRC: Disintegrated: (Link: ajax IRC Client
[20:53] <~Dan> Whoops.
[20:53] <+Silverlion> He's disinitigrated!
[20:53] <~Dan> Um... So! That's our show for tonight, folks!
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[20:53] <~Dan> wb, Andrew!
[20:53] <+Andrew_Collas> Well that was unexpected, but I am back on the air
[20:53] <~Dan> Whew! :)
[20:53] <~Dan> Did you see my question re: favorite comic?
[20:54] <+Andrew_Collas> Nope
[20:54] <+Andrew_Collas> Um do you mean series or issue?
[20:54] <~Dan> Series.
[20:55] <+Andrew_Collas> Currently I am a big fan of Matt Fraction's Hawkeye ongoing, as well as Earth 2.  Old school, the Elementals were it for me as well as the All-Star Squadron!
[20:56] <+Andrew_Collas> If anyone pledges to the KS form here, please PM me so I can get the details to get you your freebie from Hazard Studio :)
[20:56] <~Dan> Cool. :)
[20:57] <+Andrew_Collas> BUt my all time fav is the Golden Age by James Robinson.. just an outstanding mini series.
[20:57] <~Dan> So is HEROIC just the first comic planned for the Zenith Universe?
[20:57] <+Andrew_Collas> Yes'sir... HEROIC is out Action Comics... the on going series that hopefully will never end
[20:57] <+Andrew_Collas> If we can get issue 1 out the door ;)
[20:58] <~Dan> :)
[20:58] <+Andrew_Collas> 2 minutes left guys!  Any more questions?  I am keen to answer them :)
[20:59] <~Dan> You mentioned the superheroes with the resistance... Can you tell us a bit about them?
[20:59] <+Andrew_Collas> Oh man
[20:59] <+Andrew_Collas> Well essentially they are a bit like the New Mutants.
[21:00] <+Andrew_Collas> There is this... ranch?  In the Pacific Northwest and they try to get to young super powered folks before Doc Titan does... so far they have a handful of young heroes, as well as a very rich foreign backer (who's son is one of the younglings) and slowly they are building to take on Titan.
[21:01] <+Andrew_Collas> They are lead by a woman known as Primus
[21:01] <+Andrew_Collas> Her 2IC is Devil Dog
[21:01] <+Andrew_Collas> Then there is the "team" for lack of a better word who go on missions with Devil Dog, and they are Invictus, Pilgrim and Wave (though she has sat the fist issue out).
[21:01] <+GenoFoxx> I assume you mean the Marvel comic and not the term from Mutant X the tv show :d
[21:02] <+Andrew_Collas> I do indeed mean more like the New Mutants from the 1980s comics by Marvel yes sir L:)
[21:02] <~Dan> Did you say that you need to run, Andrew?
[21:02] <+Andrew_Collas> No sir, I need to pee and have a smoke but then I can hang out for sure.
[21:03] <~Dan> Okay, cool! In that case, I'll go ahead and call the end of the official Q&A for logging purposes and get you the link. :)
[21:03] <+Andrew_Collas> Well I want to thank everyone for the questions.  I hope you all enjoyed it, I know I did and as we say at Zenith, BE HEROIC!
[21:03] <~Dan> :)

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