This is going to be a once-in-a-blue-moon sort of project (if there’s any interest in it for me to continue doing them). Mostly I did up this first panel because it’s been rattling around in my brain for ages, and I wanted to get it out. It’s nice, because it’s something quick I could throw together with resources that are available to me (if any artists want to get in on this slug-fest, feel free, but I’m totally willing to go through with my child-level art skills … maybe I’ll get better with practice).
This is a “Choose your own adventure” comic where majority rules. Once I get enough votes from people to feel confident in the direction the story takes, and I have some free time, I’ll draw up a new set of panels. Note that it is possible to lead Matthew to his doom. Should he die, we can go back to a previous choice point, based on a majority vote. That means that if people don’t like the way the story is going, you could all vote to go all the way back to this first panel, if you so wish, and take the other option. Some panels will have more than two options.
The setting: 250 year After Gods’ War (AGW), Stone City, Stone Island, Mhou Dynasty
For 150 years, humanity has been enslaved by the Mhou Dynasty’s Emperor Margaff. After his failure to capture the dwarves in the mountains (you can find out more about this in Demon Invasion), Demon Lord Glezxnodin is installed as Governor of Stone Island until he can finish the job. During his reign, the Governor has little oversight from the Emperor, and the demon creates a huge coliseum where he can pit slaves against each other for his own entertainment. Citizens attend the events as well, betting on the outcomes, reveling in the blood-sport. Slaves who break the smallest rule are sent to their deaths.
This is the society that our protagonist, Matthew Strongblade, has known his whole life. He was taken from his parents as a boy, but not before his father imparted some final words to him: He is a Strongblade. There is honour and strength in his blood. Never forget. But the whips of several masters have done much to dampen his spirits over the years. As a young man, he has worked for his latest master long enough to feel that the manor is home. If he keeps his head down, and does as he’s told, he eats well enough, and has a roof over his head in the stables with the basilisks, giant lizards the minotaurs use as mounts.
And so the story begins…