Unnatural Talent

I missed my weekend post, but I’m following through with my promised Wednesday, new comic, new art, post. And then bed before 10.

What I’m Reading

New comics, week of Nov 10th

  • Batman The Imposter #2
  • Justice League Last Ride #7
  • Ordinary Gods #5
  • A Righteous Thirst for Vengeance #2
  • Robin & Batman #1
  • Stillwater #11
  • Superman vs Lobo #2
  • Undiscovered Country #17

Undiscovered Country hit me with a surprised “to be concluded” tag on the final page, which is a huge shock that this comic is ending, if true. We’ll have to wait and see.

New comics, week of Nov 17th

  • Blue & Gold #4
  • King Spawn #4
  • The Nice House on the Lake #6
  • Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow #5
  • The Walking Dead Deluxe #27
  • Batman vs Bigby #3

What I’m Drawing

Gwen Lantern

So I don’t think I’ve posted any of my Gwen Stacy series here yet, so I’ll have to make an art section for that. The story is, in February earlier this year I started a month long drawing challenge dedicated to Gwen Stacy, or more specifically Spider-Gwen. I called it the Gweniverse. I took the idea of Spider-Gwen as an alternate universe version of Spider-Man and applied that to as many different characters as I could think of. Marvel, DC, didn’t matter.

I started first with the ones that were already canon, SpiderGwen, Gwenom, Gwen Poole, and then just ran with it:

  • Gwencrawler (Night Crawler)
  • Gwenclops (Cyclops)
  • Gwentanna Gwentara (Zantanna)
  • Gwenbit (Gambit)
  • Harley Gwen (Harley Quinn)
  • Gwennernaut (Juggernaut)
  • InGwencible (Invincible)
  • Rogue-wen (Rogue)
  • Gwen 2099 (Spider-Man 2099)
  • Gwen Lantern (Green Lantern)

In February I was able to do the first 9, and then throughout the year I’ve been adding to the collection when I find some inspiration. I’ll post the gallery for next week.

#Drawtober – Wonder Woman

Still slowly making progress on last month’s Wonder Woman drawing. I’ve now inked my background, and now we are finally ready for colour.

This is, by far, the most work I’ve ever dedicated to a background on any piece I’ve done. And it was one of my goals last month when I decided to do fully realized, rendered pieces; to push myself to do backgrounds more consistently. It is one of my weaker skills and it’s something I’ll need to be able to do more when I return to working on my creator-owned comic.

I should be able to put in some real time colouring this, leading into the weekend as I still hope to get a new Stranger Than Friendship comic posted by the end of November.

As I mentioned at the top, I missed this past week’s post, but I’ll have a significant update after this coming weekend. I’ll have a lot of things to discuss. On the docket we have:

  • Grand Theft Auto Definitive Trilogy
  • Forza Horizons 5
  • and Halo Infinite Multiplayer

And bed before 10.

-iRogan

GTA V Came Out 8 Years Ago

That’s not a question. That’s just a observation. And for some reason, people are still playing it. Including… well, me. And I am not happy with myself. I almost bought a Shark Card. Our multiplayer group recently got back into the game, playing the online multiplayer. Doing jobs. Pulling heists. That game still holds up 8 years later, and there’s another upgrade in the pipe for March 2022.

I’d argue that it’s time for Rockstar to let it go and focus on GTA VI. But I can only imagine how much money that game still brings in. Hell, Nintendo just re-released the N64 controller for the Nintendo Switch. And the Nintendo 64 came out 25 years ago. So what do I know?

Games:

I will give GTA credit though. It still holds up. Its still fun, albeit difficult. I’d forgotten how hard some of the missions / heists are. And you only have two lives to share amongst your teammates, and then game over.

Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition and More Coming Soon  - Rockstar Games


Speaking of GTA, the announcement of the remastered definitive trilogy has me excited. I played all of these games on the PS2 and would love to go through them again on the Xbox. Again, achievements, but also they were all great.

GTA III changed gaming. Period.

Vice City was just plain fun.

And San Andreas was, well, good…? Bloated. Had too many different mechanics that sucked some of the fun out, but still good.

I hope they’re able to retain all the original music too.

Besides my depression into the GTA depths again – ha, a water joke.

Because I unlocked the shark achievement. 4 years after the last time I played the game. There’s my Achievement of the Week. Segway.

As I was saying, besides GTA, I’ve just about wrapped the main storyline in Middle-Earth: Shadow of War. I have the final mission thread unlocked, but I’m wrapping up a few of the side quest lines first, as I won’t want to go back.

I have the 3 DLCs as well. But…I dunno. I’ll maybe read a review or two of those to see if its worth it. I can’t even argue that it would be for the achievements at this point. I’m pretty much over the game. I can say that it was not a worthy successor of the original. The base conquering was fun, but the mission structure was a pain to deal with. And the multiple areas was just tedious. I’m ready to move on.

We didn’t even play anything else this past week. But I am excited about the news that It Takes Two is coming to GamePass. I really liked his previous game, A Way Out, and this one looks fun in its own way.

I also didn’t work on my final #drawtober piece, so I don’t have any updates on that front. Nor did I read any comics. All work and no play, makes me a dull boy.

Be Good.
iRogan
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Aliens, Orcs, and Zombies Oh My!

Games:

Back 4 Blood has been the reliable venture in our latest coop game nights, but its hard to say if I like it or not. Its fun, and the card/desk system adds a needed variable to the game-play, but we haven’t made much progress really. I can say for certain that I have played through the first 4 levels of Act 1 a handful of times, and started the 2nd set, level 1. And that’s it. It seems like every time we’ve sat down to play it, we’re introducing a new team member to the party and it would be unfair to them to jump into the middle of it. But the game is also setup in a way that you can kind of jump into any level and you don’t really need much story explanation. But the levels are harder without your stacked deck building up, so its almost worth playing from the start again as a new run to see how far you can get.

Aliens: Fireteam Elite we beat. I don’t think we’ll be looking back either. The last 3 levels are probably the best but the ending is so underwhelming. Spoiler: you see the queen and you run away. The End. The game-play is fun and hectic at times, fighting off waves and waves of aliens, big and small. But after the story there’s a horde mode, and then replay the story again and again? To unlocked emotes, and cosmetics. And level up your guns. Maybe try a different class? My game time is so limited, I’d rather just uninstall and move on. Maybe there’ll be DLC expansions down the road.

Shadow of War: I’m still plugging away at Middle-Earth: Shadow of War. About half way through. Just fought off the Balrog. Its a nice change of pace from the other coop games. I am looking forward to its completion though as I’m eager to try Watch Dogs 3 – Legion next. A proper new-gen game to finally play on the Series X. Assassins Creed Valhalla is lurking in the sidelines as well.

Art:

My original plan from #drawtober was 5 completed pieces. It will actually be 3.

Magik, Supergirl, and now Wonder Woman. Just a few days ago was a Wonder Woman celebration day, so I’m posting just the line art, and then next week I’ll add the full colour/background piece.

Comic Shout-out:

CROWDED. Picked up Vol 1 and 2 of this series.

“Ten minutes in the future, the world runs on an economy of job shares and apps, including Reapr: a crowdfunding platform to fund assassinations. Charlie Ellison leads a quiet, normal life until she’s suddenly targeted by a million-dollar Reapr campaign. Hunted by all of Los Angeles, Charlie hires Vita, the lowest-rated bodyguard on the Dfend app. As the campaign picks up speed, they’ll have to figure out who wants Charlie dead before the campaign’s 30 days—or their lives—are over.” Seemed like a fun read. 🙂

Be Good.

iRogan

Back 4 Blogs

Welcome back to the working week.

Games:

There’s a new game to play and it’s Back 4 Blood. We tried it for a bit over the weekend to get the hang of it. Made by TurtleRock as a spiritual successor to Left 4 Dead. It is VERY much like Left 4 Dead, but with a new card-based progression system to augment your play-through. The game’s campaign looks like a decent length and quite challenging from my initial attempt. Haven’t tried the PvP yet. I should have more impressions next week after I’ve had the chance to spend more time within the game.

Art:

Drawtober week 2. Supergirl

I missed last week but the week before was Week 2 of Drawtober and I was able to complete SuperGirl as shown above. I didn’t get any drawing down last week but hopefully will have something for this Friday. I don’t know if I’ll have the energy/motivation to continue my original plan of fully rendered drawings. Maybe one more before the month-end, but I think I’ll focus on something less time consuming and draining. Which brings me to Pouchtober.

Such a funny concept. May try to get a few of these out before the end of the month. Summon my inner Leifeld. Simpler, quick pieces. Lots of pouches. No feet. Pencil or ink. Minor shading. B&w either way.

Comics:

What I’m reading: The Fall by Jared Muralt. “After just losing his wife, one father will have to face a world in freefall; shaken to its core by an economic, social, political and health crisis without precedent. Facing seemingly unreal and very unexpected dangers, he will do whatever it takes to protect his loved ones in a country on the brink of collapse. In this internationally acclaimed series, Jared Muralt not only tells the story of one family struggling to survive, but also questions the very reasons that brought mankind to this apocalypse.”

It’s a pretty dark book. Dire circumstances. Basically take Covid scenarios at their worst and turn them apocalyptic. But he started writing it and working on it in 2016 having no idea what 2020 had in store.

Achievement of the Week:

Be good.

IROGAN

Tell me if you’ve heard the one about the Orc, Alien, and the Surgeon

As I try to update this site more frequently (my goal is once a week, still deciding on a specific day – leaning to either Sunday or Monday), I am reminiscing of the times early on, years ago, when I would update it daily. Before the wife, before the kids, the house and the cats. Just me and my computer and my Xbox. Writing about game news, and E3. Simpler times.

These days I’m stretched pretty thin – obligations pulling in all directions, hobbies reaching for their time in the spotlight as well. But in a good way. Kids before comics and Xbox. Try to get some drawing in during the week. Sleep is important too.

I’ve thought about incorporating my comics passion into this site somehow too. Like a “What I’m Reading” segment. I go every Wednesday to the comic book store, like clockwork. It’s actually the one reliable constant. I’d have to think of a way to make it interesting though. More than just a photo gallery of cover pages.

I updated the Screenshots page to include Spider-Man and Outriders. Currently building up the gallery for Shadow of War as well.

Currently also prepping for Drawtober 2021. Last year I did 14 full drawings, mostly black and white ink. A few had splashes of colour. This year will be very different. I’ve taken three drawings from last year’s drawtober, 1 from this year and a brand new one, and will be full rendering. Colour, poster quality. So only 5 in total. 1 per week. Quality over quantity this year. As I just don’t have the time or energy. That’s the plan anyways. I have 1 done already, for October 1st. Currently working on a Surgeon Simulator webcomic idea for Stranger Than Friendship, and then I’ll jump into the 2nd Drawtober drawing before the end of the month. This way I have a 2 week buffer.

This past week we made a bit more progress in Aliens: Fireteam Elite. Made it to the 2nd mission where we are introduced to the Synthetics enemy type, and the levels get a lot more open as we’re planet side and not in the tight corridors of a ship. The game continues to be enjoyable, but the lengthy chapters and no checkpoints does sting when your team wipes at the climax of the chapter, and you have to start over. 30 minutes of progress lost.

Trudging through the lands of Middle-Earth as well. 11 hours in. Finishing Act 1 opens up the Nemesis system to allow me to start building my army, turning Orcs over to my side, allowing for bodyguards and spies within the Orc ranks.

Act 1 appears to conclude the Shelob part of the story, so I’m not sure if she’ll make a return.

The Ascent and Surgeon Simulator took a back seat this past week as its been difficult to coordinate co-op game time, but hopefully we’ll get to play those more.

In the last bit of news, the wife has finished her play through of Psychonauts 1 and 2 as she’s gearing up towards Extra Life in November. I’ll post more about her campaign next month leading into the big day.

Be good.

iRogan