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Offline grendeljd

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General Q & A
« on: March 24, 2011, 11:11:07 AM »
Ok, since it was suggested elsewhere I thought I'd start up a general Q & A topic. To be used for questions directly for any Designers/Artists who make their way into the forum. Currently we seem to have Clark Browning & Dave McKay present - I certainly hope we see more show up too! Perhaps we can make this a 'sticky' post to keep it at the top?
I hate people generally, but I like them specifically - John Malkovich

Offline grendeljd

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2011, 11:15:20 AM »
I'll start it off with a question for Dave Mckay - its probably an obvious one but since I have the chance to ask directly now, I can't resist.

There are a couple of drawings of G1 Nightmares that have the same pose/feel as the terminator in the original film that gets into the underground refugee camp and starts killing off people in one of the 'flash forward' scenes from Kyle Reece's memory/dream. You must have been influenced by that for those drawings, yeah?
I hate people generally, but I like them specifically - John Malkovich

Offline Katharsis

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2011, 01:16:45 PM »
It's interesting how time goes by and a person looks back on past accomplishments...
... the quick answer is no, not specifically. Most of the posing and layout was based on the figures as reference and then 'whatever felt/looked right'.
Now, that being said, the mind plays incredible tricks when you are trying to be creative and clever! I AM and was a fan of the typical sci-fi and fantasy comics, movies etc. of the time and it is possible that subconsciously i may have been inspired by images from Terminator or any other films. I've never tried to blatantly copy from anothers works, but i am constantly inspired by other talented people.
Thanks for the question, hope i answered it well!

Offline grendeljd

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2011, 08:30:16 PM »
Thanks for answering!

I certainly didn't mean to suggest you may have directly copied anything - I was more angling at being inspired by. I always thought the nightmares were like terminators but not directly the same, and I liked that your drawings conveyed that intimidating feel to them.
I hate people generally, but I like them specifically - John Malkovich

Offline Katharsis

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2011, 09:27:20 PM »
yeah, sorry! i didn't mean to suggest that as well!
i never designed the machines but, i sure as hell enjoyed drawing them.
So to delve into greater detail: when i'm given freedom to draw whatever i want (within the confines of the 'world' in question) i do tend to draw inspiration from relative things. I actually didn't watch alot of terminator while working with GG, if i remember correctly i was into some Anime and some Hong Kong martial arts films. Anything Tarantino and lots of violent war films as well!
Now that i've been looking back at some of my work, i can see an incredible resemblance to the scene in Terminator you mentioned.

Offline Clark

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2011, 08:21:15 PM »
I remember, Dave, when you injured your hand so you adapted your style while you were recovering. I think it was during that time that you did most of those smaller pieces with Nightmares emerging from the mist, guns and eyes ablaze. That was a lot easier on your hand than, say, that iconic, full-page pointalism Nightmare that we made into the T-shirts.

Offline sergeant_hastp

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #6 on: March 25, 2011, 11:22:33 PM »
Now that i've been looking back at some of my work, i can see an incredible resemblance to the scene in Terminator you mentioned.

I know that one image...I always thought it was an homage to that Terminator scene as well.  I thought it was very, very cool!  (still is cool...but the homage part makes it special, in the way Tarantino movies are special!)

Offline Clark

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2011, 12:02:28 AM »
A lot of it is unconscious and even part of the air you breathe.  I only finished reading Starship Troopers for the first time recently.  I figure that the similarities I found were from everybody else ripping him off, and then me from them, without knowing it.

As far as I can know, Terminator had no effect on what I came up with.  In 1984, you only saw the skeleton for a few minutes, and in T2 the bad guy didn't have a skeleton. (Hmm.  I'll have to re-watch T2 to see how many skeletons we see).  And the thing is, the Nightmares, Assault Fiends (Balrogs as I called them, but Tom renamed them) and the Succubots all came to me in the same night in 1991, and there is nothing remotely like the latter in Terminator.

Certainly Tom, and our input, didn`t try to play on the T1 skeleton with it`s trapesius servos and broad chest. Ours looks more like Yogi Kudu in greaves  than Arny.

Offline sergeant_hastp

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2011, 10:38:26 PM »
All conceded.

But, once you had a metal robot skeletal enemy...I thought it might have been within the realm of possibility to look at that one scene in Terminator and say....I want to do an homage to that shot.

If Grendel and I are thinking of the same one...the Terminator in it isn't Arnie...and he has full skin on.  It's just the glow of the red eyes...and he is back-lit so its pretty much just a silhouette coming out of the smoke...

I just love that scene and that shot so much that I thought others might have as well.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2011, 10:40:47 PM by sergeant_hastp »

Offline Katharsis

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2011, 10:08:07 PM »
Holy Crap!
now that you see that scene and then look at my work.... :/

Offline grendeljd

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #10 on: March 28, 2011, 08:33:12 AM »
Yep, thats the exact scene I was thinking of JP... it is a striking resemblance, and very appropriate as far as I am concerned.

Now perhaps onto a new General Question;

How did the concept for LoS finally come together as a whole, and whose main idea was it [I assume Clark at this point]? I get the impression you guys were all pals and maybe kind of hashed it out together...
« Last Edit: March 28, 2011, 10:05:09 AM by grendeljd »
I hate people generally, but I like them specifically - John Malkovich

Offline Clark

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2011, 06:45:56 PM »
I changed the aspect ratio and added the colour, just for the full effect, lol.

Offline Katharsis

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2011, 08:39:22 PM »
Its official: i was inspired! (but, did not copy! lol)

Offline sergeant_hastp

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2011, 10:36:01 PM »
Subconscious homage!  :D

Offline Clark

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Re: General Q & A
« Reply #14 on: March 28, 2011, 11:47:14 PM »
How did the concept for LoS finally come together as a whole, and whose main idea was it [I assume Clark at this point]? I get the impression you guys were all pals and maybe kind of hashed it out together...

Some personal background first.  Marco and I met at a D&D game around 1980 or so.  I met Derrick at Ryerson in 1986 or 1987 and we ended up as executives at the Ryerson Game Club.  Then Marco and I, Derrick and his friends ended up as a gaming group.

Global Games was launched as an unconventional retailer by Derrick, Marco and (if I recall correctly) another fellow named Steve, in 1989 or early 1990.  At the time I was working full time as my unit storesman and saving every penny for a return trip to Australia (Marco and I visited in the summer of 1989 but I wanted to go back). Global Games sold mail order and at conventions at 20% off MSRP, which ruffled a few feathers and is a story for another day.

Somewhere in there the guys met up with Lawrence Simms, author of Battlelords of the 23rd Century.  A deal was struck whereby Larry could focus on marketing his RPG in the USA, and Global Games would handle the international distribution.  After I got back from Australia around Labour Day of 1991 we struck another deal to license Battlelords and publish an adventure titled: Do Not Be Alarmed: This Is Only A Test. 

It was while we were putting together DNBA that Marco picked up a copy of Space Hulk. We played it once or twice, loved the format - sci-fi miniatures on a fixed yet changeable board - but weren't impressed with the rules and various aspects of the game play. So the box got tucked away.

A few weeks later at about 2 a.m. the idea dawned on me: the backstory, the premise, the rules, and the figures. It all fit on two typed pages, single spaced.  The next day we all looked at it, thought it had potential, and then filed it away until DNBA got released in early 1992.

At this point, you have to look at the evolution of Global Games, proceding up the food chain as it were.  We had gone from consumers to retailers to distributors to licenced publisher: it was time to launch something proprietary.  So out came that two-page draft from a few months earlier.

In the first instance, the name - Legions of Steel  - was there, the Machine invasion was there, the League of Aliens and Operation Planetstorm.  The major difference in the rules was that it began as your standard two roll (to-hit + damage) system.  I think it was Derrick's idea to make it all one roll.  I came up with a system that worked well but was too difficult to apply in practice so it got stripped down to substantially the fire mechanics that would end up in the Black Box Set. Similarly, movement was basically what you see; leadership and suppression were added shortly after.

The first 5 figures were the trooper, the heavy weapon trooper, the Nightmare, Succubot and the Balrog.  In the original conception, the basic set would contain a commando section and 12 Nightmares with the other two intended as advanced  robots for a supplement.  Marco and I improvised to alpha-test the mechanics and the biggest problem was that you could set up firelanes and then cover or suppress such that the game stalemated.  So then we added forcewall, k-pulse and Nachtmacher grenades to provide portable cover and a bit of indirect fire.

We had a conception, a format, and a workable set of rules.  How the heck were we going to turn this into a boxed game?

« Last Edit: March 29, 2011, 12:05:36 AM by Clark »