JOHN: er. JOHN: i don't know. DAVE: john dont get me wrong its cool that you randomly dropped by again but this wasnt really the best time DAVE: we were kind of in the middle of a thing here JOHN: whoops. sorry. JADE:yeah john JADE:did you really have to pick now of all times to materialize out of nowhere and taunt me? JOHN: i'm SORRY!!! JOHN: jeez, it was an accident! JADE:so what now? JADE:am i REALLY supposed to tackle you, just to watch you vanish yet again? JOHN: no, no! please don't! JADE:because i dont really feel like it JADE:do you have any idea how frustrating that becomes after a while? JOHN: i didn't mean to come here, really! JOHN: i still can't control the jumps! JOHN: i'm TRYING, but it just... DAVE: dude are you time traveling DAVE: please dont tell me youre time traveling DAVE: you need to leave that shit to the experts JOHN: no, it's not time travel! JOHN: well, not technically. DAVE: who do you think youre talking to here DAVE: do you see this bright red gear on my hoodie DAVE: that means i know stuff about time travel DAVE: sure looks like youre time traveling to me JOHN: no, i swear! JOHN: ok, see, i went on a dream quest with some troll pirates. DAVE: troll pirates JOHN: argh, never mind. that's the long version of the story. JOHN: ok, so i stuck my hand in this little magic house, and... DAVE: john youre fucking shit up here JOHN: what? DAVE: you being here DAVE: thats not supposed to happen DAVE: all this shit were saying now DAVE: its not supposed to go down like this i can feel it JOHN: i know! JOHN: i'm sorry, i would zap away again, but i don't know how! DAVE: i dont think it matters now dude the pooch is already screwed JADE:>:o DAVE: wow wait that was a terrible figure of speech in this context but you know what i mean DAVE: yo like i was JUST saying i didnt want to time travel anymore to avoid bullshit like this JOHN: IT'S NOT TIME TRAVEL THOUGH! JOHN: i promise! DAVE: then what is it JOHN: i dunno! JOHN: like, some kind of surreal, history altering... reality hopping... magic power. DAVE: thats time travel genius JOHN: no way, dude. JOHN: you have to trust me on this. DAVE: alright DAVE: but if it turns out you just created a doomed timeline and were all going to die im gonna be hella mad JOHN: this isn't a doomed timeline. JOHN: i'm telling you, i can change things. JOHN: stuff that wasn't supposed to be changed. JOHN: and i'm not saying bad stuff won't happen as a result of the things i change... JOHN: but at least it won't make a doomed timeline! JOHN: the new things that happen will just be... JOHN: the stuff that's supposed to happen? DAVE: huh DAVE: thats pretty dope if true DAVE: actually in a way that almost makes me more nervous JOHN: it does? DAVE: yeah messing with the alpha timeline DAVE: i mean not the alpha timeline but the ALPHA alpha timeline DAVE: almost seems DAVE: heretical i guess? DAVE: you sure you know what youre doing egbert JOHN: um, earth to dave. JOHN: i already said i don't have a clue what i'm doing! DAVE: gotcha DAVE: welp im sold DAVE: but uh DAVE: really man you kind of are interrupting a thing DAVE: temporal mechanics not even withstanding JOHN: what was i interrupting? DAVE: i think this was going to be a serious conversation here DAVE: i have a feeling jade and i were going to get all heavy with our relationship issues or whatever JOHN: you were? JADE:sigh JADE:yes, unfortunately thats probably where this was going JOHN: aw man, i'm sorry. i am fucking this up so bad. JOHN: see, this is what i'm worried about. JOHN: even though my random jumps are supposed to be a "safe" form of time travel, i'm still nervous that i might be ruining important events anyway. JOHN: like, there was all this crazy stuff that happened to get us here, whether it was good or bad. JOHN: and if i fumble around like this accidentally changing all that stuff, then i won't even know what's going on anymore. JOHN: maybe no one will! DAVE: uh DAVE: does anyone even know whats going on NOW? JOHN: that's what i'm saying! JOHN: things are complicated enough as it is!!! DAVE: truth JOHN: ok, look... JOHN: maybe we can try to minimize my impact on the current situation. JOHN: if i fly away, do you think you can do whatever you were going to do in the first place? JOHN: do you know what you were going to do? JADE:yes JADE:i was going to kick the mayor into the lava DAVE: what?? DAVE: holy shit so uncool JADE:i was going to make it clear i was serious about killing someone you cared about JADE:so you would stop being a baby and start using your powers and swordfight with me you dumb jerk :p DAVE: wow DAVE: jade i think you might be a little too good at being a villain its kind of worrying JADE:thank you :) DAVE: so the mayor would be dead if john didnt show up? JADE:oh yes absolutely JADE:he would be burnt to a crisp right now i am sure of it DAVE: god damn jade DAVE: why would you do that you know eventually id probably start using my powers and reluctantly start embracing my role as a reluctant hero DAVE: that shit always happens JADE:no you wouldnt you were just going to argue with me forever! DAVE: yeah maybe DAVE: but the point is youre not going to bother killing the mayor anymore are you JADE:i guess not JADE:he is a very cute mayor after all DAVE: see john your fake time travel shit is already paying off DAVE: you saved the mayor congratulations JOHN: ok, i'm glad the mayor is alive and well. JOHN: but this is exactly what i wanted to avoid! JOHN: isn't there some way you could just... JOHN: pretend i never showed up, and let this play out the way it was supposed to? JADE:sorry john JADE:whatever dave and i were going to argue about JADE:i think the moment has passed JADE:the whole thing is kind of ruined to be honest JOHN: DAMN IT! DAVE: ok all yall settle down im getting a text DAVE: ... DAVE: i cant fucking read this
I've been thinking this over for the last few weeks, and I've decided now is the best time to suspend all regular updates until I've finished the story, rather than pausing just before I start on the final animation. When I'm done, I'll post it all at once. There are a lot of reasons why I think this is the best strategy.
Primarily, it's about efficiency, and being able to work on the remaining (and likely the most difficult parts) of the story without distractions, or the added challenge of having to crank out the next serial update as fast as possible, which means I always have to stay totally linear with the work. This way I can produce the rest of it more comprehensively, prepare animation assets in advance, do more stuff in parallel, etc. It will go faster. And ultimately, I think it'll read better as one thing, rather than as a sequence tortuously spread out over time, as has been the norm for years. I think it's close enough to the end now to safely retire Homestuck as a serial reading experience. There's nothing to be gained from that presentation anymore, in my view. It's just time to bear down and get it done.
I guess we're breaking for a long time on a big cliffhanger, but there's no way around that. Actually, pausing at any point later would probably be even worse, as it keeps pushing into endgame territory. That's why I'm stopping now instead of later. With such a big readership, the reactions will only get crazier, and the demand for new updates will get more intense. Over time, knowing so many people are slamming refresh many times per day starts to be more of an omnipresent distraction than anything. I think there is sort of a perception that I am creatively feeding off the hysteria surrounding the comic, but on a very practical level this is not true. Creating entertainment is not really a lifestyle of madcap shenanigans. It is a very sober, often dull process that requires a huge amount of time and concentration. It will be better to disarm the hype machine while I get the hard stuff done.
So what is the itinerary? Need to finish A663 through A666, and then A7. Keep in mind that these sub acts can be literally any length, even onepage. There's a good bit of ground to cover, but most of the effort will be tied up in animation chores.
I don't really have a time estimate here, and am not sure there's any real advantage in coming up with one. It'll just be a while. I also have to allocate some time to work on the Kickstarter game. That didn't stop being a thing I have to do. It's coming along. I'll probably have a more substantive update on that before the end of the year. There hasn't been much to report yet since it's mostly been in a high level planning and writing phase. And firming up tons of legal minutiae. Stuff like that.
But I will say there is something new to watch out for next month. Kind of a secret project I'm involved with, unrelated to MSPA or the KS game. Well, it's technically not that secret. It's only secret if you don't know about it yet. Meditate on those profound words, and keep an eye out for news on this in coming weeks.
Oh yeah. Almost forgot, I'll have to take some time to port the site to a new server. Obviously it hasn't been cutting it the last couple months. So we'll work on that soon. Hopefully the new service will be able to handle the massive heart attack the next batch up updates will represent.
During the gigapause, there should still be plenty to see here in the news section. Whether it's about the aforementioned projects, or new product releases, there'll be a lot going on. Trust me, the coolest stuff at What Pumpkin this season has yet to be released.
2014 What Pumpkin Convention Schedule ... over there! ->
The What Pumpkin crew will be quite active on the con circuit this year. 11 cons by my count (for now). Take a look at the schedule, and make your plans accordingly!
What Pumpkin will be setting up a booth in all these cons where you can buy stuff and meet some friendly WP folk. I personally will only be attending two or three of these. I'm not sure which ones yet. I don't think I can lock myself into anything definite yet, since all that traveling is incredibly time consuming and tends to derail work. That's sort of what happened last year. I traveled way too much, and it really messed me up! So work schedule permitting, I'll probably pick a couple of these later and make some "surprise appearances". That way, if you happen to see me at a convention, you can be 100% certain that our encounter will be a result of PURE DESTINY.
It's almost over, right? Um, no, sorry. I still have no time estimate, or specific date I am shooting for. 4/13 would be the COOLEST date to shoot for, right? I doubt that's realistic though. Because in spite of my most religious wishes every single day, magic keeps on being fake. THANKS, "god".
What is the status, then? The status is this. Since pausing, basically all I have been doing is writing. No drawing or animation yet. Writing, writing, writing. Writing for Homestuck, and writing for the adventure game. More time has been allocated to the latter. The game is a big, big project. Let's not kid ourselves here. It's like this whole new major story and everything, fueled by millions of dollars. That's a very different situation from Homestuck, which is usually fueled by approximately zero dollars.
Homestuck probably needs another month of writing before I can start making panels. Not even to speak of Flash work. And of course, game development looms over everything as well. This feels totally different from the usual routine of write-draw-post, write-draw-post, write-draw-post, ad infinitum. Writing everything out beforehand is peculiar. And by peculiar I mean "totally conventional", in most other creative contexts. Let's see how that approach pans out. (You go out on a limb and guess it will result in the same silly bullshit as always.)
WHAT ELSE IS GOING ON?
Kickstarter - Speaking of the game, I sent out a backer update just before the newd year. The same update just went out to paypal backers too (it took a while to set up a system for that). If you backed the project but didn't notice an update, you might want to check your email. If you didn't back it, sorry these updates are <shhhh>secret</shhhh>. I mean, not really. The info gets "leaked" everywhere, if you know where to look. The point is, *I'M* technically not supposed to be the one tell you. Get it? Oh. You don't? Me neither.
One question I feel like I should answer out in the open even though I kinda thought it was obvious (there is no such thing as obvious) since I see it come up so much: yes, you will be able to purchase the game, even if you did not back the Kickstarter!
Contest - In the near future, I'm going to be putting out some neat things through We Love Fine. WLF is a cool company that makes a lot of nice stuff, that you will find particularly interesting if you are into "the fandoms". Do you like fandoms? When I was a kid we didn't even have those. All we had were shitty Atari games, and spankings.
But before they formally launch any Homestuck stuff, they're running a fun shirt design contest. There are sweet cash prizes. Hey, only participate if you think is sounds fun though. Most people won't win, because that's what a contest is, according to the way that common word is classically defined. I ain't out to waste anyone's time! I do hope plenty of people submit designs though. There's some nutty stuff rolling in. People will laugh at me if I pick the naked Gamzee shirt. DON'T MAKE ME PICK THE NAKED GAMZEE SHIRT!
Another Secret Project - Remember a while ago, I mysteriously mumbled something about a secret project? And then it came along, and it turned out to be Namco High? This is like that again. Except it's not a dating sim. Or a game, or anything like that. Also, it doesn't involve video game characters you've never heard of. It is a much more Homestuck-focused thing. That's all I'm gonna say! Ok, I lied, I will say one more thing: it's going to be really cool, and you will wonder where it has been all your life.
Vinyl Figures - These are up in the store now! For actual sale. Hehe... look at em!
Homestuck book 3 and Problem Sleuth book 5 are here! The Homestuck book contains Act 3. The Problem Sleuth book is the final volume of the series.
(The cover of PS5 glows in the dark by the way.)
And now that the Problem Sleuth series is wrapped up, you can get the full set. Dedicating this much paper to three cartoon detectives trying to leave an office should be illegal. But it isn't, and we are exploiting that fact to our advantage here.