As some of you might know I’m at the very beginning stage of writing a superhero team one-shot comic or graphic novel (length to be determined). Sometimes I wish that I could draw so that I could draw the panels myself, because most (not all) graphic novel publishers only accept 6 or more completed comic pages.
Don’t get me wrong, I can do the quick stick figure and, if I had a week, I could even do a cartoony version of a superhero ala Batman the animated series. But to do serious superhero pencilling to the standard of Marc Silvestri or Mike Deodato jr. or Adam Kubert or Jim Lee or Pat Lee?
No way. Btw, does anyone know any up and coming artist whose style is comparable to the above pro artists?
No? Then, I’ll continue to surf DeviantART, PencilJack, and Digital Webbing...
But sometimes I allow myself to dream...Then I find myself seeing hero designs like these and thinking, Why didn’t I draw this first?
Elemental Hero Flame Wingman
In case you’re wondering, Elemental Hero Flame Wingman is a ‘monster’ from the animated television series, Yu Gi Oh! GX (follow-up series to the original Yu Gi Oh!), which all about the adventures of a boy named Jayden Yugi and his friends, all of whom are students of Duel Academy. This fine institution is dedicated to the theory and practice of the game of Duel Monsters, a turn-based card game which is played between two opponents using their respective card decks and arm-worn devices called duelling discs. Many players have themed decks, such as decks containing many machine-themed cards or dinosaur-themed cards, etc.
Each player starts with 4000 life points and the object of the game is to get your opponent’s life points down to zero.
Cards are divided into three primary categories, namely: Monster cards, Spell cards, and Trap cards. Monster cards, which are played face up in either attack or defence mode, bring monsters (with specific attack and defence points) to the field. Spell cards, which are also played face up, create special effects that affect your monsters, your opponent’s monsters, the field, your life points, or your opponent’s life points. Trap cards, which are played face down, are activated by very specific actions of your opponent.
Clearly, I’ve really gotten into the inner workings of this game, which is really the point of this post.
Growing up, I always wondered what people saw in turn-based card games like Magic: The Gathering. At the same time I was watching and reading many fantasy movies and stories. I viewed Magic: The Gathering and RPGs where elves roam as their own solitudes that were just different from the comic reading solitude, the Fantasy short fiction solitude, and the Fantasy movie watching solitude to which I belonged.
I use the word ‘solitudes’ to denote collectives that have protected and developed distinctly different cultures, languages, and institutions within the same inter-medium super-genre (Fantasy). You could use the word ‘fandoms’ or ‘sub-cultures’, if you want, but I think using ‘solitudes’ is more apt.
In a previous post, I bemoaned the small overlap (at least smaller than it should be) between superhero comic readers and Speculative short fiction readers. What I often find incredible is that many comic readers I’ve encountered are more likely to read SF novels than SF short fiction. Beyond consumer preference, it doesn’t really make sense to me.
Well, until I think of how Yu Gi Oh gave me the answer to the question: What do people see in turn-based card games like Magic: The Gathering?
For me, it’s the skill needed and how strategy and tactics come into play. Coincidentally, this also what I love about team sports (soccer, rugby, cricket).
Having the main characters of Yu Gi Oh GX have superhero-themed cards also doesn’t hurt.
Although, it’s unlikely that I’ll start playing Magic: The Gathering, I won’t be wondering what the attraction to it is anymore...