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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    Welcome. So as many of you probably already know, I'm the creator of Anti-Heroes, but that's not the reason I'm here. Well, it sort of is. Last night, I stumbled onto some old comics of mine that I didn't even realize I still had. The more I thought about it, the more I came to a realization that had never even occurred to me before. I've been making comics my entire life.

    And I'm not kidding. For as long as I can remember, I've been coming up with stories to tell and trying to jot down pictures in order to tell them. So I decided that I would post this thread to give the community here a chance to see how I've progressed over the years. I present the guided tour of Zarah's entire comic-making life. Get ready for a long read, folks.

    (Note: Some of my comics do have a bit of language that would usually be censored by the forum, but for the most part, it's pretty mild. Also, all the pictures will be links, since... There are way too many of them to have them all as images.)


    When I was young, probably around the 6 or 7 age (maybe even younger) me and my brother worked on a few little comic ideas, but we never really got very far with them. It wasn't until I was about 12-years-old that I finally fleshed out my first full idea; Hotdog Man. Genius, I know. He was a superhero who lived in a world where everything was themed around food. His sidekick was Burger Boy and his enemies included such brilliant creations as Mustard Man, Chopstickz, the Scuba Eggs, and King Yolk. I actually managed to finish a complete issue, but since I was... disorganized as a kid, my closet ate the drawings. Along with many, many other things. Alas, I have no examples to show, but the idea is still fresh in my mind. Sort of.

    As I entered junior high, my passion turned from drawing to writing, and I started by first manuscript. I finished about 2/3 of it before deciding to can it for being so bad. I still have it on my computer, though, and no, you can't see it.

    Around the middle of high school, I downloaded a certain mod for a certain first-person shooter known as Half-Life 2. Garry's Mod is what it was called. And after practicing my posing of ragdolls, I came to the realization that, "Hey! I could take screenshots of scenes I make and edit them into comics!" It didn't take me long to stumble upon the Garry's Mod Comic-making community of PHW Comics. So, I came up with a bit of a story and went to work. A few days of posing and Photoshopping later, the first issue of Darkcity was born. I went straight to work not long after releasing it with the next issue, which would sadly be the last one made. I've always wanted to go back and pick up where I left off, but never found the drive for it.

    Darkcity: It's hard to believe I thought these were good:
    Issue 1: Cover | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18
    Issue 2: Cover | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18

    Around the same time that I was making Darkcity, I wanted something more. I was sick of the seriousness of my comics, so I decided to try something a bit funnier. I've always thought that metrocops from Half-Life 2 are inherently hilarious, so it didn't take me long to come up with an idea for a comedy series. Precinct 06 was the result. There were 13 issues in total, released over the period of a couple years. All-in-all, they were well-received and I enjoyed making them.

    Precinct 06: Imageshack ate some of the issues, unfortunately.
    Issue 1: Discipline
    Issue 2: Agressiveness... Or Something
    Short: Side Effects May Include...
    Issue 6: Terror is a Word Called "Low-Res" (Part 3)
    Issue 7: Risqué Business
    Issue 8: A Vortigaunt Named "John"
    Issue 9: ROFL Donkeys
    Issue 10: The New Deal
    Issue 11: Raw Deal
    Short: The Return of Precinct 06
    Issue 13: Training - Part 2 (1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6)
    Issue 14 Preview
    Issue 14 Preview (Again)

    It had been quite some time since I released a serious comic, but with a bit of a contest coming up on PHW, I had a chance to put myself back in the ring of drama. And that's exactly what I did. Although the story was weak, the project was mostly for me to practice my Photoshop editing skills from my Darkcity days. As you probably saw from Precinct 06, I was getting better, and so were my comics. Delta Zero hit the forums after a single weekend of hard work.

    Delta Zero: Again, Imageshack ate some of the pages, so it's incomplete.
    Issue 1: Cover | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 9 | 10

    Although the comic had won me the title of "Approved Comic Maker" on the PHW forums, it didn't last. I was too much a lurker to really be known, and I didn't make the final vote. My title was revoked, and I felt a little dejected, so my excitement for making comics was somewhat dwindled.

    Now, I'll take a moment to step aside. The projects listed above are the major ones in my history. Ones that saw the light of day, even if it was only one issue. But there were tons of ideas for comics that came and went throughout my time, most of which never made it past the planning stage, but there were a few that I managed to get started, at least. Here's a list of a few abandoned projects, Photoshop experiments and just one-shot comics that I've made with Gmod over the years:

    The Dead Pile: Bring out your dead!
    The 14th Order: 1 | 2
    Deus Ex Machina: Issue 1 Cover
    Kanadian Christmas: 1
    Half-Life 2 - Shattered Empire: Preview
    WTF - The Comic: 1
    The R Group: Preview | 1
    The Adventures of Zara: 1 | 2
    Hypothetical Situation: 1 | 2 | 3
    Heretic: Preview | Preview 2 | Issue 1 Cover
    Hamlet: Alternate "Shazam!" Page
    True Love: 1

    But Gmod wasn't the only thing that I played with. Of course not. I made quite a few little experiments outside of the Half-Life 2 engine. And here's the proof:

    Random Comics Don't ask.
    Developers
    Will Wright's Sim City
    Empire: 1 | 2 | 3
    Star Wars Online
    The Words of Doom
    Bad Day in the Life of an Imperial Guard

    I began to drift from the PHW community and from Gmod in general. I still had many unfinished projects, but I came to the understanding that they would never be released. I just didn't have the time and patience for it anymore. But then I discovered a new webcomic. A webcomic called Order of the Stick.

    Around the end of 2007, I started poking my nose into the Giantitp forums. Eventually, I found my way into Arts and Crafts, and saw the "Adobe Illustrator Guide to Making Avatars." I soon realized I had quite a knack for making OotS-style stick figures. I kept practicing and read some of the fan comics that were popping up, so I decided to try my hand at comic-making one more time. The result was a few issues of Plus One, an OotS-style fancomic.

    Plus One: Not what you were expecting, was it?
    Issue 1: Hearing Voices
    Issue 2: Ham and Cheese
    Issue 3: Role Call
    Issue 4: Democracy Check

    I canned the idea after I realized it wasn't quite different enough. I needed something that would really set me apart. Something that would catch people's eyes and keep them reading. So a vampire named Lana made her first appearance. And from there... Well, the rest is history.


    Holy crap, that took a lot longer than I expected. As you can see, I've been doing comic-work for a long, long time now. Longer than I realized. There's a lot to be said about my past, and I figured you guys would get a kick out of something like this. Especially for those who keep up with Anti-Heroes.

    So if you've been a fan of any of my comics, whether new or old, well, I thank you for reading. Oh, and I thank you for reading this thread, if you really managed to get through this wall of text. I should give you a medal, but right now I'm too tired from hunting down all this stuff and writing. If you'll excuse me, I'm going to pass out.

    *whump*
    [ There was a signature here. It's gone now. ]

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    Crahen's Avatar

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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    Wow, great memories. I was there to see most of those start.

    ... and most of them fall apart, too. Oh well. At least all the years of failed comics eventually produced Anti-Heroes, that makes it all worth it!
    Crahen/Crazed Ewok/Crazed/Chris
    anti-HEROES - Unity -
    Anti-World

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Logalmier's Avatar

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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    Yay! Zarah embarrasses himself!

    Oh wait, I'm supposed to be sympathetic, right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zarah View Post
    Around the end of 2007, I started poking my nose into the Giantitp forums. Eventually, I found my way into Arts and Crafts, and saw the "Adobe Illustrator Guide to Making Avatars." I soon realized I had quite a knack for making OotS-style stick figures. I kept practicing and read some of the fan comics that were popping up, so I decided to try my hand at comic-making one more time. The result was a few issues of Plus One, an OotS-style fancomic.

    Plus One: Not what you were expecting, was it?
    Issue 1: Hearing Voices
    Issue 2: Ham and Cheese
    Issue 3: Role Call
    Issue 4: Democracy Check
    You should add those to the 'extras' section of your website. Really, that would be awesome.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    SandyCaesar's Avatar

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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    I second that proposal: these need to be Extra'd on the Anti-Heroes main site. Some of those Precinct 06 ones are brilliant.
    To the meaningless French idealism of
    Liberty, Equality, Fraternity...

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    we answer with the German realism of
    Infantry, Artillery, Cavalry!
    Prince Bernhard von Bulow


  5. - Top - End - #5
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Vampiric's Avatar

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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    I'd say 'Can you do more Precinct 06?'

    They are hilarious


    TRAF Awards

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    I fought The Mysterious Circle of Shadowy Chairs in Discworld I (Dei in Machina) till the end, won the game and survived and all I got is this lousy signature line.



    Thanks Banjo1985 for Count Catula!

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Nameless's Avatar

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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    I'm getting the evil red X for the Darkcity pages.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Zarah View Post
    Empire: 1 | 2 | 3
    This game... I recognize this game. SW: Galactic Battlegrounds, perhaps?
    ze/zir | she/her

    Omnia Vincit Amor

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Nameless View Post
    I'm getting the evil red X for the Darkcity pages.
    Really? They're working fine for me...

    Quote Originally Posted by Siosilvar View Post
    This game... I recognize this game. SW: Galactic Battlegrounds, perhaps?
    That's the one. Great game.
    [ There was a signature here. It's gone now. ]

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Logalmier's Avatar

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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    I actually think those 'Darkcity' ones are pretty funny. Okay okay, I know they aren't supposed to be funny, that's just the sort of sick twisted person I am.

    Oh, and again. You REALLY should ad those plus one comics to the extras section of your Anti-Heros site.

    I also noticed that you used your current username for most of the comics, what's with that? How long have you kept the name 'Zarah'?
    Last edited by Logalmier; 2009-05-29 at 09:43 PM.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Phase's Avatar

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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    Zarah plus Half-Life, heh. Comedy gold.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Logalmier View Post
    I actually think those 'Darkcity' ones are pretty funny. Okay okay, I know they aren't supposed to be funny, that's just the sort of sick twisted person I am.

    Oh, and again. You REALLY should ad those plus one comics to the extras section of your Anti-Heros site.

    I also noticed that you used your current username for most of the comics, what's with that? How long have you kept the name 'Zarah'?
    Believe me, I think the Darkcity comics are hilarious nowadays too. Some of the scenes are so full of narm that I can't help but laugh. But back then, I thought it was quality work...

    As for adding the comics to the extras section, I likely will the next time I remember to tell Crazed.

    And how long have I had this username? A long, long time. It actually started out as "Zara," since that was the name of the main character in my old manuscript. I used it as my own username on a few forums, but it's been at least 5 years since I first used it, and it just sort of stuck since then. When I registered here, the name "Zara" was taken, so I slapped an H on the end and called it a day.
    [ There was a signature here. It's gone now. ]

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Uncle Festy's Avatar

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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Vampiric View Post
    I'd say 'Can you do more Precinct 06?'

    They are hilarious
    Yes. This.
    Quote Of The Week Whenever I Feel Like Updating It (last updated 1/17/12)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phase
    That guy was badass! He was like, "Oh! Oh, you're gonna try to Chuck Norris me, I'll just Chuck Norris you!" Unfortunately, I am the best Chuck Norris since Chuck Norris.
    Which is saying something, considering that Chuck Norris... was Chuck Norris.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: The "Zarah Embarrasses Himself" Thread

    Well, due to some popular demand, I finally got around to making issue 14 of Precinct 06. It's not nearly as epic as some of the previous drafts, but I think it works. I just hated leaving the series hanging in the middle of a story arc, so I tried to wrap it up. Anyway, I just figured I would post it here since some people enjoyed the originals: Page 1, Page 2
    Last edited by Zarah; 2009-06-07 at 01:55 PM.
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