Tuesday, May 31, 2011

House Rulz 6

I know it is a day late (but I do not post on Monday).  I wanted to give a personal Thank You to those who have served and are currently serving in the US Military.  I am a Veteran myself, but I was blessed to have served during piece time. 

So once again thank you to those who serve and to their families.  They also serve who only stand and wait” – Milton.    

Now onto the fun stuff.

The Twins:


Hunter is 5 years old and can not wait until he is old enough to join the family at the gaming table.  Hunter is that combination or pure mischief and total innocence that only a 5 year old boy can manage.  Hunter is the imaginaut (I just made up a new word) of the family, going on grand adventures, without ever leaving the backyard. 


Harley is Hunter’s twin sister.  Harley is all girl; with only a little bit of tomboy in her.  She is the princess of the family, and believes that everyone else serves at her pleasure.  Harley is probably the smartest and most grounded of the family.  And although she will participate in Hunter’s imagined adventures she never let’s herself get carried away by the fantasy world.    

A quick note on today’s strip:  This is one of the few strips actually taken from real life.  I was at visiting one day and witnessed this exact exchange between the twins.  This strip is almost verbatim (OK I may have added the last panel)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

House Rulz 5

First, I want to thank everyone who is coming here to check out the strip.  I hope you find enough potential here to continue to come back. 
Comic strips are a unique art form.  Unlike other story telling mediums a comic strip is an ever evolving creation.  A movie, a novel, and even a comic book, all come to you as a completed product.   Typically you do not get to witness the evolution of the art.  However, a comic strip is much more intimate.  With every new strip you see how the artist struggles and learns lessons and improves.  You also see the characters evolve and develop as they move towards stable personalities.
Perhaps the best example is the Peanuts.  If you ever get an opportunity, look at the first few months of the Peanuts.  It has very little in common with the strip that would later become the most popular comic strip in the world. 
In no way do I mean to compare myself to the great Charles Schultz; but like Peanuts, House Rulz continues to evolve.  I have drawn 32 strips so far, and I think the quality of #32 versus these first five strips shows considerable improvement.  And my test audience has confirmed my feelings; they say the strip continues to improve. 
Today’s strip is a very good example of what I am talking about.  This strip is my least favorite.   In fact my original plan was not to post this strip at all.  But a couple of my test audience listed it as one of their favorites.  So I decided, what the heck do I know; I am putting my work out here warts and all. 
So stick with me.  It only takes 30 seconds to read the strip and three or four minutes to read my ramblings (I am a little long winded today).  Let’s see where this takes us.  It should be fun.
Now on to today’s Character Bio:

Caellen is the middle child in the House family.  She is 13.  Caellen thinks she is a goth girl, but deep down she still likes Disney Princess and Hello Kitty.  Gaming is not as important to Caellen as it is to most of her family.  But if she could only get her Dad to throw in more vampires she could really have fun. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

House Rulz 4


Another exciting House Rulz Tuesday.  (Mark your calendar, tell your friends, tell your enemies). 

I have worked over 120 hours since Friday, so I do not have another character bio for you today.  My humbelest appologies I will try to catch up on Thursday.

I am also still working on a way to link this webstrip to Facebook and Twitter and other sites to try and spread the word.  I am a neophyte on those websites.  I never even had a facbook account until a couple of weeks ago.  So I do not know what the heck I am doing.  If you have any advise and do not mind helping a newb drop me a line edwchase1@gmail.com

My prayres go out those in Joplin MO.  I have lived through a devistating tornado that was as bad or worse than what they are going through (Terrible Tuesday, Wichita Falls, TX 1979).  So I can feel their pain. 


Thursday, May 19, 2011

House Rulz 3


It is House Rulz Thursday (tell your friends…..seriously tell your friends, I need more readers). 

I had a really cool thing happen the other day.  Ric Croxton who does the terrific podcasts “The Book Cave” and “Ric’s Comics” for First Comics News, interviewed me on his podcast. 

In “Ric’s Comics, Episode 58” Ric and his co-host Steve call me in the middle of the show and we talk about House Rulz for about 15 minutes.  It was a lot of fun, and a great honor.  Thank you Ric and Steve. 

If you are a comic book or comic strip fan, I highly recommend Ric’s podcast.  It is both entertaining and informative.  I think you should listen to the entire podcast, but if you want to only listen to the House Rulz discussion it starts at about the 28 minute point. 

Go to http://www.firstcomicsnews.com/?author=5 and select episode 58. 

Today I will introduce the next character in the family:


Dad is the head of the household (at least in his mind, the other family members may say different).  He works from home, so he is the primary disciplinarian of the family.  Dad is a free lance game author.  He also paid blogger for a major role playing game website.  Dad eats breaths and sleeps gaming.  He is the family GM and runs all of the family games.  Dad is a total old school gamer, he loves “crunchy” gaming systems and insists that during a game he is not “Dad” he is the GM.  Dad is also a major conspiracy nut, so if you want entertainment, just mention your favorite conspiracy and he will go like a self winding top.         

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

House Rulz 2


I thought I would take the opportunity of the next few strips (every Tuesday and Thursday, mark it on your calendar) to focus on the characters in House Rulz.  I am going to introduce the characters as they appear in the strip.  It is an ensemble cast with no single star.   As the strip continues to develop you guys can tell me who your favorite characters are.  Your favorites will determine who the star of the strip turns out to be. 

Today’s Strip is all about Mom and Tanner. 


Mom is the strength of the family.  Like all of the family she is a gamer.  Even in character she can not help but be the mother of the group.  She is constantly amused and baffled by her husband and her children.  Mom is usually the calm in the midst of chaos.  She is also a coffee snob, who almost always has a cup of joe somewhere close by. 


Tanner is the oldest child in the House family.  He is 15 and has overnight grown into a giant.  At 15 he is larger and stronger than most grown men, but like most 15 year old boys, his mind has not caught up with his body.  He plays football because that is best way to get the girls.  He is rambunctious, clumsy and full of an infectious energy.  He is also despite his size very innocent and naive.   He also has a strange fascination with playing slutty female characters (much to Mom’s dismay)       

Sunday, May 15, 2011

House Rulz 1

Welcome to the launch of House Rulz comics strip.

A few years ago I was over at the house of a friend of mine. We were playing D&D, or Traveller or some other old school game. His wife and his two teenagers were playing with us. I thought how cool it was that his entire family (except for the young twins) played role playing games together. Their family was very close, they enjoyed each other's company. It did not take much to see it was because they played role playing games together.

In many ways they had a typical family dynamic, Dad was the GM when they played and the disciplinarian in real life. Mom had the strength and wisdom coupled with the loving nature of most mothers. The oldest son played football and got into trouble like every teenage boy. The teen girl was boy crazy and had the same teenage interest of every other 13 year old girl. And the twins were typical 5 year olds.
And yet they were all gamers, and that made them atypical.

All my life I wanted to be a cartoonist. I had done semi-pro cartooning for years. Therfore, I am always looking for ideas that would make a good strip. I talked to my friend and he agreed that I could do a strip based loosely on his family. He even helped me develop the ideas for the strip and gave me several story ideas.

So far I have done about 30 strips and sent them out to a select audience of comic fans and gamers. The response has very positive, so I think it is ready to show to a larger audience.
One of the guys I sent the preview to was Studio Arkhein from the terrific blog "Rather Gamey". He suggested I try Blogger.com. So here I am.

I will add a strip every Tuesday and Thursday to start. I think the strips start getting better after the first dozen or so as I start to get into a little better rhythm and style. Even now the strip is evolving as I learn the characters and become more confident in my art. So please stick with it and watch it evolve and grow.

My favorite thing is to hear from people who are reading my strip. I appreciate all feedback, even if it is not all positive.

Thank you, and enjoy.