This interview is of BlkKnight , whose comics are: Crossing Death , Zephyr of Fate and others!
(interview conducted by legomegacy !)
Crossing Death Questions
1. What inspired the comic and its title?
I've talked about the inspiration for this comic and its RPG Maker roots at length in previous interviews. The title, however, is a play on definitions. Most, if not all of the cast will have "crossed paths" with Aeren, the Goddess of Death by the end of the story. Furthermore, Aeren has also been "crossed" (as in crossed and double-crossed) by Faragon.
2. Where do you draw you ideas from?
My ideas come from everywhere and everything. Old television shows, music (a considerable amount from Japanese music games), life in general.
Racism is another key concept in the story. Therdies are considered inferior by all other Fey races and are hated with a passion, anyone who's been to the desert continent despises Felinoids, and the Aquarians and Espis appear to attack each other on sight. Even bubblecaps have a species they despise, but you'll have to wait for Chapter 7 to see that one.
3. Are you represented in any of the characters?
Some of the characters do have pieces of me. Isis has my silly side, Aeren has my geeky side, and Brick shares my general neutrality.
4. What was your favorite story arc?
Loaded question. For arcs that already occurred, it's a toss between the current arc (Chapter 6) because it just seems so lively and moving, and Chapter 2 because it was just a fun romp in the woods. For upcoming arcs, I'm looking forward to Chapter 8 where most of the group sorta meets Aeren. It'll be full of strange and wondrous things...and Aeren forgetting her audience doesn't have doctorates in biology (big word alert).
5. Are you inspired by any artist in the field or on the duck?
I'm not really inspired by anyone in particular. At the same time, I've been constantly trying to achieve art that fits into that "digital painting" category. I've attempted shading in the comic, but after playing around with it I might stick with flats.
6. Why does Brick never catch a break?
Sure seems that way, doesn't it? It's a combination of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, and being a bit of a pushover. He's trying to fix that.
7. What was the inspiration for all of the bubblecaps?
The bubblecaps were originally a random doodle when I was determining what to add to the forest in Chapter 2. They ended up being a sleeper hit...especially when I came up with Hurrman (who was based on 8 slimes becoming a king slime in Dragon Quest).
8. Is it hard to keep a schedule for your comic?
Initially it wasn't bad. Once I started my dissertation is when things started to fall apart. I'm nearing the end of it so I should hopefully start picking up the pace again.
9. Would you ever be tempted to turn it into another medium?(cartoon,game, etc)
I would. It could easily be converted back into an RPG or even an MMO (I'm a level 10 Aquarian Lancer!) I've also thought of promotional flash music videos, but I lack the flash skills (and patience) to put something like that together.
10. What can you tell us about the current story that would intrigue someone to read it?
The current story arc has plenty of action, explosions, politics, new characters, new locales (the underground), and possibly most importantly I finally reveal some of the antagonists near the end. There will be something for everyone.
11. What plans do you have for the future of crossing death?
One major component to the future of Crossing Death is the completion of my Doctorate. Once that's over and done with, I can devote some more time to the comic. Merchandising and possibly some convention promotions are also going to find its way into CD's future at some point. I think most readers would want bubblecap plushie-hat combos.
A spin-off comic involving only bubblecaps is in the idea phase. More of a kid-friendly version of Crossing Death :p.
12. Do have characters that exceeded your expectations for them , likewise characters that failed in your eyes?
Let's face it. The bubblecaps are quite possibly the most popular characters in the comic. I think the whole Janlyn vespid mutation scenario went over better than expected. Michael in a Boat seemed to be a bit of a flop, but he never had a major role to begin with. Other than that, I haven't gotten much feedback about the characters to accurately gauge their popularity.
13. If you could say your comic was like anything else what would it be?
In some ways I like to consider the comic everything traditional JRPGs are not. The male protagonist is not some vapid effeminate person, nor some 18-24 year old with a can-do attitude and the intelligence of mayonnaise; there's more than three female protagonists (just look at any FF); with the one exception Serra did, running around shouting the name of your attacks would get you killed...quickly; etc.
14. If you had a choice as to what music would fit your comic what would it be?
I'd say symphonic techno/trance/electronica. The stylings of electronic music but with sounds and instruments that are more appropriate to the setting. It sounds odd, but music games have done this and can bring the the appropriate level of tension and "epicness" to fit what goes on.
15. Did you have this world created before you started or did it evolve over time?
The world did exist before Crossing Death, but it's been constantly evolving. Certain parts have become more fleshed out since the start.
16. What were the high points and low points?
The biggest high point of the comic was getting the official website, though at the same time the drop in comments counter-balanced that. Changing up the style was another high point. I don't think I could have conveyed Chapter 6 the same same way with the old style. Low point on that note was dropping my update frequency.
17. Will this story ever has a finish or will it live on forever?
While some of the characters are immortal, Crossing Death has a definitive ending to it. It's not to say I can't do another story at a different time and place on Ther'ran. Especially considering that Crossing Death is focused in one area.
18. Do you have plans for any other comics?
The aforementioned Bubblecap spin-off. I'm also working with another artist on one of the stories about Ther'ran's sister world, Lunis, called Zephyr of Fate. I may also consider the story of when Aeren met her future husband.
19. Do you have any rituals or settings you like when creating your stories? (mood music, favorite drinks, ect)
Usually I do everything at my computer (tablet's there), and I'll either work in silence or with some trance podcasts (when I know I need to be focusing).
20. Have you changed or changed anyone during the run of your strip?
Plenty. I'll list them all as fun facts.
1) Brick was originally slated to date Janlyn, and no Odessa in Chapter 2. That changed and Odessa was looking to be a better match. This is also why Chapter 3 exists.
2) Speaking of Janlyn, I knew she was going to suffer a mutation, but it was originally slated to occur later in the story and may not have been very bee-like.
3) I wasn't originally planning on revealing any villains or even the underground in Chapter 6...now I am.
Some of the changes are small, some are to help make things more coherent, and others are just to get something out without making a plothole.
legomegacy interviews BlkKnight of Crossing Death and other comics!
skoolmunkee at 1:44AM, Jan. 4, 2010
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:43PM
I Am The 1337 Master at 3:52PM, Jan. 4, 2010
Cool interview. I'm starting to really read BlkKnight's comic now, now being whenever I get to it. lol! Maybe a week? I've promised this to about twelve other people...maybe I should stop promising...
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:53PM
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