New Comics Every Weekday - Written by T Campbell & Phil Kahn - Illustrated by John & Jason Waltrip
Man, I love William H. Macy
My very first thought as well!
hmm, I was thinking Robin Williams made up as William Macy
Pffft! Cannot un-see.
I prefer Filliam H. Muffman, myself
rift > kingdoms of arkterra XD
Kingdoms of Arkerra > rift > kingdoms of arkterra
(capitalization is reserved for good games)
Kindoms of Arkerra > WoW > Rift.
The only reason WoW isn’t on the top is because an mmo that doesn’t exist will always be better than an mmo that does…
highly agreed. but i gotta say this list should continue.
and thus i give you MY list.
Kindoms of Arkerra > World of Warcraft > Rift > Guild Wars > Diablo 2 (i consider it a mini-mmo xD) > Star Wars : the old republic. (not out yet but shows promise) > Runscape > Ragnarok Online > Lord of the Rings Online > Everquest > Dungeons and Dragons online > continues…. continues…. continues….. [at verrrryyyy~ end] Aion.
Diablo2 isn’t remotely a MMO. There isn’t a single “kill 4 greater snarklock” quest in it.
LOL @ Aion at the end. Except, at the very very end, is this little game Disney made called Pirates of the Caribbean online.
Curiouser and curiouser.
Cyberspace authors? I guess it’s five minutes into the future technology wise?
I believe it’s just a comment on what genre the authors write, just as we call authors who write webcomics Webcomic Authors. I do not believe Phil or T actually preside within a webcomic. If they did, every comment they make here would be breaking the 4th wall.
Actually, that theory makes just as much sense as it is implausible.
Not really in the MMO “City of Heroes/Villains” there are players who do a monthly story arc in the games AE system. They are using game mechanics to tell ongoing tales, so they could easily be called a cyberspace author.
Even Roger Ebert came to agree with video games could be seen as art.
Dedalus seems to me rather less happy about his work than he claims. The pregnant pause between “It’s a” and “pleasure,” the fact that we haven’t seen him smile…
Well, all it really means is that he’s less than eager to appear on X-Play. Maybe, like many tech folks in his position, he sees being the public face of his company as more like a chore that must be endured than a giddy highlight of his day.
Maybe he misses playing the games he creates.
Right now, my money is that he was playing Gravedust.
Or Frigg. It’s a pretty close toss-up.
Dude, it is hard to play the games that you create and actually enjoy them without being critical of everything you did/everything you didn’t do. :P
Then absolutely Gravedust.
It’s obvious hew was playing Colonel Pornstache.
I support that idea. Only one gifted in the art of the ‘stache could play the good Colonel.
He is so lying in the last panel. YOU CAN SEE IT IN HIS EYES!
Adam should ask him to X-Play-n himself.
Adam Sessler somehow got…er… attractiver? Not necessarily good looking but, definitely not like normal either. :T
Oh, that’s an easy one. He looks happy, which is how you know this webcomic is still fantasy. On the show he does this irritated, picked on gamer boy persona. It also looks like he’s standing up straight. He never does that.
He has too much neck. Less Neck, more shrugging.
Whaaaaaat? The enigma thickens.
And is weirder and weirder.
yeah, I think I’m done. Been with this comic for a long time and I’m just not liking the sudden ITS A GAME plot twist. So thanks but this is where I get off.
And another “loyal fan” bites the dust.
He’ll be back. They always come back….
And the name /Guilded/ Age didn’t at least make you think this was a possibility? Or Frigg’s heavy uses of modern internet memes?
Though, if this is all just a game, it’s one hell of an elaborate one, with some of Frigg’s scenes (ironically) demonstrating the most RP-heavy scenes and the least bog-standard quest-like behavior. I’m at least intrigued — especially by why this guy was watching (or playing?) Payet Best.
I think saying “it’s a game” is still an assumption, and not yet fact.
I’d be up for Wu-Tang v Capcom. Defjam DJ powers vs optic blast? Hells yeah.
Er, Wu-Tang v Marvell v Capcom.
It’s like Rock Paper Scissor
Dibs on ODB.
Wu-Tang does have hundreds of members to choose from..
But ODB dies first!
D’ohhhhh man. Ya had to go that way.
But seriously, did you play Shaolin Style on the PS1? Fun times! I miss the ODB’s Drunken Boxing style.
Ah. So THAT’S why peace could not be an option.
Also: what a fascinating new video game that this guy’s come up with. Very psychologically… fraught.
great… Dedalus is Michael Morhaime. Blizzard = Hurricane KoA = WoW what next, cut to Cartman playing as Payet Best in a machinima crossover?
I think “Hurricane” and ripping off the art design of the WoW box is a bit lazy, yeah.
Ok, so this update establishes that there is an MMO Arkerra (without ruling out that it is based on a “real” Arkerra that Dedalus knows or has seen in some manner). TBH I think that could have been established in one of the previous couple of strips instead of using a whole update on it. Of all the times to slow the pacing, this is not it.
I like the “Real Arkerra” theory and think it’s supported here. We have him not only being secretive about watching Best in the last strip, but also talking about being “haunted by his successes.” Maybe he has some influence over “Real Arkerra” that he regrets taking advantage of while developing the game?
if it’s real, and they’re tapping into it to make MMO content, then that means the company is deliberately promoting conflict in a real world. Pretty evil.
Cue a plot where the characters are transported to this world, and they try and convince the media that Akterra is real, only to be locked up for being mentally unstable?
Well … what if the code of the game sort of went “critical mass” and BECAME real … like Cyberdyne in Terminator, just with orgies and rampaging nuns instead of cyborgs. Could explain some of his mannerisms, trying to keep this thing contained and under wraps.
Orgies and rampaging nuns? That’s an apocalyptic future I can deal with!
Maybe Best is his PC?
If Payet’s a PC, how does he feel about being logged out so abruptly durning his shining moment?
was Windows 7 his idea?
so, Best:H R Dedalus::S Dedalus:Joyce?
No, because people who start out as thieving douchebags usually don’t make it on X-Play.
Also because bous Stephanephoros was never truly asked about his theological intentions. If HRD were Joyce, Best would be capable of defending his actions even to himself, which we’ve recently seen he can’t do too well.
tl;dr Thank you for reading that book.
You forgot the “dominated the market for 7 years and continues to do so.” Yeah, its a pretty obvious parallel but i’m OK with that. Its obviously the authors’ intent.
Still not sure how much I’m liking this turn of events… but I’ll err on the side of optimism. Please don’t let me down guys.
Wait, the game is rated T, yet contains flagrant orgying courtesy of Payet Best. Who did Dedalus bribe at the ESRB? Or is it just that Jack Thompson was never born in the Guilded Age universe?
Flagrant Orgies that, you may recall, didn’t show a single naughty bit.
He’s playtesting bonus content.
The truth just shines tohrugh your post
Flagrant Orgies would be a great name for an electronica band. Like Kraftwerk, but a little less intellectual.
The “real Arkerra” theory above would explain it- the orgying is one of those things Dedalus took out of his observations before passing them to the dev team as ideas.
You’ve never been in to Goldshire on one of the bigger WoW RP servers, I see…
Oh Moon Guard.
actually that was dedalus’ mega slash fanart.
Man. I’m gonna give this a month, but I just can’t see how this is going to go in a good direction. You guys have never let me down before, here’s hoping.
Sorry man, you just brought this down on us. It’s your own damn fault.
A video link that doesn’t have a video?
This link has been hijacked by SONY.
yeah… i’m itching to see how this twists together
Kingdoms of Arkerra, eh…
Wonder if you can play as a Land Shark?
Maybe in the next KoA expansion, “Armageddon”
That’s an idea I can sink my teeth into.
We’ll continue to experiment. And we’ll continue to develop K.o.A.
BRING ON THE STEAMPUNK CLOCKWORK JETPACK SUCCUBUS-OCTOPUS-PLATYPUS-UNICORNS.
I’ll be in my bunk.
…it wouldn’t be too hard to draw.
Am I only one getting a Tron feeling and expecting Dedalus to wind up inside Arkerra?
No, you’re not. Especially with the Tron-homage poster in the second panel (thanks for the nod, John). I think it’d be a pretty interesting way to go, so I hope we’re right about this one.
As I said before, Colonel Pornstache. It must be!
I started reading this from the beginning and my attention slowly waned because it felt like “another” fantasy comic. ( And I love me some fantasy.) Now you have my full attention with this twist and I’m actually excited to see where this is going to go.
I had this same feeling. It suddenly became a lot more interesting when berserk boy started killing his team, and I’m liking where this is going!
I know my optimism should flag, but holy crap, the writing is just excellent. What a clean way to phrase that.
On the one hand, we could assume that H.R. is the mind behind Payet Best. That offers irony in several flavors, most notably the fact that, while optimistic, his character is in fact haunted by success. Also, by ghosts.
He could be using his status as developer to use GM invisibility and look in on Best.
Long as I’m speculating, he could be an escaped cyber persona posing as human.
In grappling with my feelings on the latest development I’m reminded of the City of Heroes comic books. While it was cool to get a free comic book (with consistently improving art) with my subscription to a comic character video game, the stories were pretty consistently the “stuff you can’t do in game” show.
Games have bounds that stories do not. I try to imagine what the scene with Frigg’s chess-bullying “negotiations” would be like in an online game, and it doesn’t pop; It’s bad story, bad game, or both. Which, of course, is why .hack was never an actual online game (and in my opinion one of the reasons it wasn’t great as a PS2 game series).
If Frigg is the avatar of a player, the beautifully written motivations behind her decision not to murderdeathkill the “nerds” is not really the real motivation, for really reals. It’s close – it is So Close – but it’s not.
I’m not saying there’s no layer of enrichment from adding this “outer” world to what most of us recognized as “a WoW-related comic” from the get-go. All you people who were freaking out and thinking Syr looked like she was talking To You as the arrows came her way? It looks more and more likely that she was breaking A fourth wall, even if it wasn’t Our fourth wall. And as I say, it would be a hoot to have confirmation that a mind like that of H.R. Dedalus is the driving force behind Payet Best.
But there are, by my count, as many cracks as bonuses, places where the extra layer makes the inner layer less believable or leaches meaning from it by declaring the character who is facing a moral quandary or falling in love “double-fiction.”
I’m interested from the reverse viewpoint. This is far too immersive and varied to be a modern videogame, so how has Hurricane Studios managed to make such a world?
So H.R. = Chris Metzen. Who looks strikingly similar to Vince Guaraldi with a slightly less bad-ass mustache.
Could we please set this in a slightly-alternate world where G4 still employs Leo Laporte and Sarah Lane and the rest of their old crew? Given that we know it’s not exactly our world anyway?
You set the bar far to low! I would hope for a world where G4 was allowed to fail instead of merging with TechTV and killing it off. Bring back the ScreenSavers!!!
Well, the big G4 logo right there on the screen makes it kind of hard to imagine that this is a world where G4 never happened to TechTV, unfortunately.
And then, in Blazing Saddles fashion, the whole cast of the comic breaks through the wall/greenscreen behind them in a giant brawl.
perfect, and Daedalus gets a cream pie to the face by Gravedust
“What do you think you’re doing? This is a closed set!”
“I’M WORKIN’ FER T. CAMPBELL!”
“Not in the face!”
The company’s new game is all about escaping from a tron-like world inside a computer. The protagonists apparently live inside a tron-like world inside a computer. The way this is going to go seems fairly obvious to me.
I’m sure it does.
They are also mimes.
Mr. Dedalus has spoken a fair amount in these past two pages, yet his mouth hasn’t moved once.
Dude’s a robot.
Do you see that glorious mustache? He would have to peel those broom straws back for us to see his mouth.
colonel Pornstache, call him by his true name dude
Dedalus was sucked into a fantasy world forty years ago. After saving the world he was sent back where he found himself alone. Saddened by the dull, sepia-toned reality of our world, he quested for a way to return. Finding his own company and creating fantasy games based off the world he missed, Mr. Dedalus found a way to ease his withdrawals and get his high. Only for it to end with the limitations of simulations. He continues to pursue technology to reach his world once more… and maybe one day be able to smile again.
wait. waitwaitwait. it actually IS a game? i’ve butted out of the comments all this time because i was waiting to see if, well, dedalus somehow existed in the same world as the rest of the characters, and he was spying on them. or that we wouldn’t be sure which reality was the real reality.
but it’s actually a game.
this makes all the previous gamer references much less clever.
going to keep reading, but i’ll be happy to see this section of the comic done with.
Wow, I was just joking when I made that WoW/Warcraft crack, pages and pages ago.
I guess some similarities are as puissant as they are they are palpable.
“callbacks”, not “similarities”
This cannot possibly go anywhere good. How about we pretend the last 6 pages didn’t happen?
Your loyalty is touching.
Judging from the pacing… I’m feeling 2-3 more pages of Life-at-Hurricane, then a teaser page, followed by a cut to how this actually pertains to our late party members.
I hope so, at any rate. I’m getting antsy here, I miss the colors. D:
I think we’re going to get a twist on this idea in the last panel of one of the two remaining strips this week.
If I were pacing it, it’d be Wednesday, but they might do one more strip of a day in the life of HRD before we get it.
Through the process of extrapolation using this page, I have found this Wednesday’s page and uploaded it for your viewing pleasure. SPOILARS.
oh gods, it’s like the krypton factor all over again.
Whoah! Haha! Yes!
And the next panel would be up his nostril! :-p
Your comics always crack me up. Keep up the good work.
Waaait – his left nostril IS Payet Best! Woah. I didn’t see that coming.
NO the twist is that the entire world of guided age exists amongst his nose hairs. Which is why the elves reference all body parts to trees.
I hope they’re literally channelling the latest cyberspace authors.
mr Dedalus looks a lot like William H. Macy to me
I was thinking the same thing.
I’m surprised no one has noted that before. Oh wait, they have.
Oh Sess, how I’ve missed you since DirecTV dropped G4.
And nobody can touch my Dan-Old Dirty Bastard combo in WTvsC.
He makes games without a fuss
His super admin access is a great big plus!
please tell me this is to the music of ag-a-do
It’s to the music of H.R. Pufnstuf. You kids, sheesh.
yeah, chances of me knowing the music from a USA-only children’s TV series seem slim to me :)
I don’t know the music to HR Pufnstuf either…
I heard that it was a terrifyingly weird show.
It’s on Youtube, you know. You can find out…if you dare! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cshdzAtBW4M
Dedalus creeps the piss outa me.
Seriously… LOOK at him! He hasn’t changed facial expressions since he’s been introduced… he’s horrifying!
Sooo, Daedalus was the father of Icarus… are you implying something here?
I’m still waiting for them to release Devilstick III.
I actually laughed. i felt it was important to not just put lol as that phrase seems to have lost its meaning.
Don’t worry man, ‘gaseous ball of fire’ craft took forever too, it’ll eventually get there.
My theory: Dedalus is from Akerra, and is meddling in affairs to stop one nation (or group) getting too powerful lest they discover what he did to come to ‘our’ world’ – his previous success that totally no longer haunts.
…so that’s why he’s carefully ensured the TV audience don’t see his tie! It’s an artefact!
Duh… an EPIC artifact.
Ever read ‘The Guardians of the Flame’ by Joel Rosenberg?
Dedalus = Arthur Deighton
Ooh, I like where this is going. It’s a fascinating twist!
So ‘Escape from Cyberia’ is a Tron reference?
In any case I feel H.D. is quite literally haunted by Arkerra…somehow.
Also has anyone noted that the CEO’s full initials are HDD?
What brain case I am. HDD, really?
But apparently there’s an HRD (Hard Rectangular Drive) that could be the next gen HD: http://gizmodo.com/5300214/hard-rectangular-drive-is-faster-more-efficient-than-ssd
Also HRD can stand for ‘Hurricane’ Research Division: http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/hrd/
Or “Human Resources Department”
Huge Roly-poly Dinosaurs?
Aren’t his full initials H. R. D.?
Whoops, you caught it. Never mind. I’ll return to the peanut gallery.
Looks that way: if you speak it out it also sounds like “Escape from Siberia” …which has connotations for anybody born before, hmm, 1975.
Or after ’75 but before ’88.
It’s turning into Assassins Creed!
Still liking this twist, wonder where its going…
Webcomic canceled. Some guy on the internet said so.
Don’t like this page. It’s so boring… as were the last few, IMO. If GA can’t change my mind about loathing meta by the end of this week, I’m probably going to have to tap out too. Sorry guys. I’ll miss all the funny comments.
You will remain where you are soldier! Never give up, never surrender…unless you’re french.
I’m feeling the references a little too blatant for my subtle pallette as well, but I don’t think we’re lingering on this for long.
HAAAA the REFERENCES
also- hearing you loud an clear with the message there boss
I feel like a reference would be subtle, and this is about as subtle as a runaway train slamming into a mac truck…
Seriously guys, where are we going here? Wheres the chase and how do we cut to it?
Could you explain what you mean for those of us with a tendency to over complicate things?
You’re getting three pages a week. No matter how much cutting they do, you’re not going to get there FAST.
Had Cyberia 2: Resurrection it was pretty cool as far as I got.
“Escape from Cyberia” and “Kingdoms of Arkerra” may not be unconnected.
I need something to get me through this section.
Liquor, or more art from Angry Buddha!
You can’t drink art you silly goat.
Also, I am a turtle, not a goat, at least my guild tag says so
Aren’t you a hawk?
OMG I LOVE…
oh it’s the same one?
Still awesome :D
For those who are “unhappy with this turn of events”, my advice would be to take a break for awhile. T. has a long history of “writing for the archives”–that is, of choosing to occasionally tell a story that reads wonderfully when it’s something you just click through and read, but is irritating for one reason or another when you have a two-three day wait between each installment.
This arc, with it’s sudden shift, is likely going to qualify for a portion of the audience. So yeah, my suggestion is that you take a month or so off, come back and make sure Chapter 9 has started, and then read Chapter 8 in its entirety.
Sometimes its important to slow the plot down to a crawl. It builds suspense. Having said that, where are my explosions, fight scenes, nekkidness and other debauchery. I’m going to need an ETA on my T&A
Go to bed, Michael Bay!
You, sir, have made me laugh. Well done. Bravo! You are a gentleman and a scholar.
Wu-Tang versus Capcom 3 is only being anticipated because Sonic Heroes: Brawl came out already.
The next big twist is that he will go home and remove the fake Groucho Marx glasses.
LOL! You totally beat me to that one. I was going to ask if it was just me, or if anyone else thought if he took off his glasses the nose and ‘stache would come with them. (Which isn’t meant to be an insult–I think it adds to the creepiness.)
i believe that KoA is a game, but the “party” is a set of AIs that cant tell the difference because it is their reality, and Daedalus will be the finger of god that breathes life back into them.
Oh and not sure if anyone else got this but Hurricane-Blizzard, their weather features.
To everyone, who would like to quit now. Don’t do that. We haven’t seen what GA is planning, we can only guess. Quit, if all this turns out to be stupid. But hells! Have Phil and T ever wrote anything stupid before? The whole story is genuine in its entirety, how could this seeming cliché be a stupid thing? Watch from another viewpoint, and try to like the events so far. Try to want to see Mr. H. R. D. and his actions, anticipate to see the flow of events in this bleak world, and stop whining! For now at least…
Personally, all this shit broke my heart, but I know, that the comic will remain great, though different.
Take the recommended month break, if you must, that was a very wise advice.
Can someone contact Julian Assange on this? I’m sticking with the comic, optimistically believing that it will all be ok and worth it, but I’m also a little panicked.
I just want to know what the deal is, and I want to read the secret cables on WTF is happening.
I’m afraid he’s court up in something right now.
OK, we have a Tron ref so the whole World within a World plot theory may be true. Question now is are we getting the Dues Ex version or the ‘Oh crap, I’m trapped in Erfworld’ version.
50 treatedBucks ™ says that his “mmo” is actually creating magical constructs of the fake character inside a real world (the world of Guilded Age) and he is feeling guilty because he knows his “fake” mmo is actually causing REAL consequences to people.
if not this would really suck. I want to see how things go with the characters.
:( I don’t so much care about other things.
The Next Big Plot Tweest: Dedalus is really an android controlled by a sentient mustache. Shortly afterwards Phil gives a video interview where he rips off a latex mask to reveal himself as M. Night Shamalan. The camera pans to T. Campbell, who proceeds to do the same. They link arms and run off into the sunset, which, in a last minute tweest, is revealed to actually be a giant candle burning in the background. Cut to black, no further explanation.
Needs more cowbell.
… They link arms and run off into the sunset, which, in a last minute tweest, is revealed to actually be a giant candle burning in the background, which is then snuffed out by Douglas Adams.
Cut to black, no further explanation.
(fixed it for you)
Did anybody do the quest chain in twilight highlands where you have to collect the four heads of the two ogres. Za, phod, beeble and brox. I know they mix the names up like Za’ Beeble
phod’ brox (but its still pretty obvious) but I’m glad to know Blizz loves Douglas Adams.
I loved that. I wanted to keep the heads forever.
If I had to guess at a theory, I’d say Mr. ‘Macy’ here is Iver.
I’m not sure if this has been pointed out yet. Certain jokes take on a new meaning.
Except that since the story was rife with MMO jokes from the beginning, it really doesn’t.
I wouldn’t use the word “rife” here, that implies there was a lot of it. It’s closer to “sprinkled” or “seasonned” or “lackadaisically coloured”
“Lackadaisically?” I don’t recall any jokes about anthropomorphic feline Prohibition-era gangsters. :-)
wouldn’t that be lackadaisyically? :p
Since I’m commenting O.o (Yay being a creeper! :D)
This is an awesome comic, the new sling-shot story turns are fascinating and keeping me hooked, and I’m very excited to see where it goes!
(goes back to being a creeper).
Give me a razor.
I’m going to kill his mustache.
I wonder how much EXP you’d get for that….
Don’t do it. It has the high ground.
Amagad, I would NOT try to solo that, were I you. That is very much a raid ‘stache. Bring extra healers cuz I bet it has an AoE Quillshot…
The dramatic reveal of the chapter: Syr’Nj is played by Adam Sessler.
Perhaps I’m just not as well-versed in geek-lore, but I am so very lost right now.
he’s not nearly as personable as morhaime, though
Apparently Dedalus is the “real villain.” The last panel of this page implies that he’s insincere — he’d really rather shut down Kingdoms of Arkerra. So, I’ll speculate that Payet Best will come into play in doing so — by saving the world.
Ironically, for an RPG, saving the world and establishing peace and harmony is effectively destroying the world, as far as players are concerned. It’s the most marked divergence between the interests of players and the interests of the characters they roleplay.
Okay, given the contents of the next page, I’m probably wrong about Dedalus’s plans here.
1. Reference to Wu-Tang Clan: Shaolin style /props
2. Last panel could be foreshadowing…let’s hope, eh?
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