While Ace Dick sets up the rather complicated board game, Death clicks his BALL POINT SCYTHE and jots down a few notes in his TOME OF WAYFARING SOULS.
He documents the tale of three detectives trapped in their offices. In the due course of time, they escaped from their offices, only do discover they were still trapped in what could loosely be considered a larger office building, held hostage by an unscrupulous mob boss named Mobster Kingpin. MK wets his bill in just about everything, liquor bootlegging, laundering, embezzling treasure concealed in stone busts, prostitution outfits orchestrated by his Madame accomplice along with sinister urban mural rackets. Additionally, MK guards the MEGATON KEY required by the sleuths to exit to the REAL CITY STREETS which are in dire need of their sleuthing services!
The detectives were able to escape their offices by accomplishing various feats both inside their offices, and on the IMAGINARY CITY STREETS, a realm accessible in ways twofold: Through A) electrically-powered WINDOW PORTALS, and B) alcohol-fueled spells of IMAGINATION from within the safety of a small FORT.
The detectives additionally advanced their situation by forming alliances with various KINGDOMS residing on the flip-side of the IMAGINARY UNIVERSE. Problem Sleuth befriended ELVES, Pickle Inspector befriended WEASELS, Ace Dick befriended HOGS, and unfortunately, Mobster Kingpin made an ally as well in CLOWNS. Each aided his ally in its struggle against its warring party and received boons for their efforts. Eventually, Problem Sleuth used his heightened DIPLOMATIC ABILITIES to resolve all disputes among the KINGDOMS, thus winning him favor with the WEASEL KING.
Through the boons of their respective efforts, the sleuths gained a mysterious form of cognizance regarding their FEMALE ALTER EGOS. PS cognized awareness of Hysterical Dame, PI cognized Nervous Broad, and of course, AD merely cognized himself for lack of IMAGINATION. These ladies were revealed to be trapped in a DOLL HOUSE in MK's office, a room which he himself was proven to be trapped in as well, only freeing himself upon receiving his boon from the CLOWNS. The females had to overcome their prison as well as their DIMINUTIVE SIZES by accomplishing various feats within their rooms, utilizing SIZE ALTERING PORTALS to and from the IMAGINARY UNIVERSE involving a MUSIC BOX, a STOREFRONT, a MIRROR, a MANHOLE, and a JACUZZI.
Meanwhile, the sleuths engaged in battle with various DEMONS in the IMAGINARY UNIVERSE, gradually increasing their skill levels and adding to their repertoires of BATTLE TECHNIQUES and COMBAT OPERANDI. At one point, Ace Dick brewed a batch of CANDY CORN LIQUOR. The resulting explosion from the volatile concoction is ultimately what freed them from their offices. (For him, by blowing a hole in his front wall. For PS, by triggering an event which caused the OBOE to be dislodged from the back doors.) Later, Pickle Inspector drank the CANDY CORN LIQUOR to max out his IMAGINATION gauge, giving him tremendous powers in the IMAGINARY UNIVERSE.
His powers lead to these consequences.
A) Splitting himself into 8 clones.
B) One of those clones turning into a monster which killed most of the clones, and was then shot by...
C) One which summoned a CANDY MECHA, and then later killed by the "female" AD in the DOLL HOUSE.
D) One rising into the sky and becoming GODHEAD PICKLE INSPECTOR.
E) One using ABSTRACTED THOUGHT, allowing the real PI to function in reality, while the imaginary ones remain.
F) The final remaining one using TEMPORAL REPLICSIMILE, splitting himself in two. One disappearing into the PAST (PPI) and the other into the FUTURE (FPI).
Also meanwhile, Ace Dick (the original one) found the CONTROL ROOM containing a complicated PUZZLE and a CODE MACHINE. First, he tried jumping out of his SIDEWAYS WINDOW, fell through the IMAGINARY UNIVERSE sideways, and died. In taking a step back, he used the CODE MACHINE to skip ahead to a point in the game where the complicated PUZZLE was solved. (It was later determined that it was Past Pickle Inspector who went back in time to solve this puzzle, and then died.) Upon solving the puzzle, a hatch opened, allowing him to travel to the IMAGINARY UNIVERSE to collect his boon from the HOGS.
A little later, Problem Sleuth found the CONTROL ROOM too. He used the CODE MACHINE to return to an earlier state in the game, to the moment before Ace Dick jumped out the SIDEWAYS WINDOW. This time, AD was able to jump into the STOREFRONT before falling to his death. He emerged from Hysterical Dame's MUSIC BOX, causing him to be VERY SMALL. He eventually came to be normal-sized by using the various SIZE ALTERING PORTALS.
This is how there came to be three Ace Dicks.
Furthermore, by this point, there were two Pickle Inspectors: the original real one (PI), and his super-powered imaginary form in the future (FPI).
After PS used the CODE MACHINE to create the third AD, he then jumped through the UPSIDE-DOWN WINDOW with the PARACHUTE to fall through the sky of the IMAGINARY UNIVERSE, past the SLEAZY BROTHEL IN THE SKY, landing in the WEASEL KING'S palace. This is how he came to be charged with diplomatically resolving tensions among the FOUR KINGDOMS. However, he was only successful upon looking up a CHEAT CODE on GAMEFAQS, and printing it out. The PRINTOUT was generated in the ALCHEMY ROOM, which PI then took and used with the CODE MACHINE to skip ahead to the SUCCESSFUL POLITICAL NEGOTIATION. As a boon, PS received a great deal of AMMUNITION, ELF TEARS, WEASEL SNOT, HOG SLOP, PIE FILLING, and the loyalty of the WEASEL KING, and was returned to reality. He then collaborated with the other ADs to fit the SKULLS of the sleuths previously slain into the slots to unlock the DOUBLE DOORS.
In the ALCHEMY ROOM, PI also printed out a recipe for 5 ALARM HOT SAUCE, which involved a CHIPOTLE PEPPER, a rare item which proved to be found beneath AD's HAT. One of the ADs prepared the concoction in the HOT SAUCE STILL and waited for it to mature.
Upon freeing themselves from the DOLL HOUSE, HD, NB and "female" AD encountered MK, who'd just returned to his office. This sparked a fierce battle, whereby the heroines dealt damage to MK by raising his BLOOD SUGAR and using powerful attacks such as their CHARM BREAK! and MURDER FLUX! techniques. Power for these attacks was supplied when damage was taken by their counterparts. In the meantime, PS and the other two ADs were climbing the levels to MK's office, fighting monsters along the way. Damage they took fueled the females' attacks, and vice versa.
NB's MURDER FLUX was maxed out when PI was fooling around with windows in the CONTROL ROOM. He dropped one window through its own corresponding window portal, in spite of warnings from the HONEYBEE PROFESSOR. The reaction triggered a massive explosion, killing PI and the PROFESSOR. PI met with DEATH for TEA. The PROFESSOR pollinated the floral/fractal-based AFTERLIFE, while GPI fondly regarded it. After her attack, MK pushed NB through his office window. She fell through the sky in a nervous manner for some time until FPI appeared from the past and caught her.
In the course of the battle with MK, AD was killed in a suicide maneuver. He met PI and DEATH in the AFTERLIFE. Together, they eventually bested DEATH in a series of sudoko-based challenges to return to life. Pickle Inspector would bring a tear to DEATH'S eye by completing the LABRYNTHINE SUDOCUBE COMPREHSENSILE.
The earlier window explosion caused by PI was so massive, it caused a city-wide blackout in the IMAGINARY UNIVERSE. The darkness triggered the release of the terrible DEMON called FLUTHLU, the final adversary PS would face at the top of the tower, which physically corresponded with the imaginary TOWER OF SYNDETIC ASCENSION connecting both sides of the universe. FLUTHLU would climb that tower and emerge through the DEATH STAR WINDOW. PS would easily kill FLUTHLU with his TRUSTY KNIVES attack.
On the way up, one of the ADs was attacked by a ZOMBIE HIRED MUSCLE (who would later prove to be a hero) and became ZOMBIE ACE DICK. ZAD snuck by FLUTHLU to discover the giant BOWEN STILLSON DOGG bust blocking MK's office door.
Meanwhile, HD killed MK with KISS OF DEATH. However, MK snuck out of the AFTERLIFE while DEATH was distracted by PI and AD. MK revived himself with INSULIN SHOT, and knocked HD out cold. He then built a FORT out of his desk, drank some liquor, and retreated into the IMAGINARY UNIVERSE.
Once the 5 ALARM HOT SAUCE was finished, the explosion destroyed the BOWEN STILLSON DOGG, allowing PS into MK's office, to find MK in his fort.
The other AD drank the 5 ALARM HOT SAUCE and became a very strong FIESTA ACE DICK.
When FAD inverted the universe by flipping a window, this allowed MK to descend into demonhood to become DEMONHEAD MOBSTER KINPIN, MK's final form. PS, FAD and ZAD went through the office and upstairs to the deck of MK's imaginary pirate ship, the CHICAGO OVERCOAT. FAD had to destroy/dislodge a series of busts along the way, including a SNOOP BUST which he tragically sent into the sky never to be seen again.
PS flipped the ship's STEERING WHEEL to invert the universe again to begin waging battle. PI and AD, having bested Death, returned to the ship. FPI conjured CANDY ARMOR for the party, which was quickly negated by DMK's powerful attacks. The sleuth party countered with a series of their own attacks, raising DMK's BLOOD SUGAR and dealing damage by summoning the WEASEL KING, conjuring a JAWBREAKER SKYLIGHT BOMB, and invoking a COMB RAVE to execute a ridiculously powerful TRIPLE TRUFFLE SHUFFLE. DMK's first face was defeated, only to reveal DMK's second face with two fully revived health meters.
To counter this, the sleuth party invoked their GAMBIT SCHEMAS to enhance their offensive and defensive attributes.
Meanwhile, HD and NB find themselves trapped in the SLEAZY BROTHEL IN THE SKY, where they pursue a mission to best MADAME MUREL, MK's female counterpart and brothel matron, and plug in a GIANT FAN for some reason.
Also, while DMK's WEAKSPOT was exposed, AD foolishly got on top of DMK's HAT. (The AD who was at one point the "female" AD but now ironically functions as the "normal" AD.) DEATH met him on top of the HAT and then challenged him to a friendly game of LIFE, which brings us to the present moment.
It's all so simple you wonder why you even bothered to ask.
Today marks exactly seven years from the day Homestuck began. And Act 7's single-page installment marks the end of the story. Seven acts in seven years, to finish a sprawling "creation myth about kids in houses," as I would describe it for those who asked what my next project was about before I started it. What is there to say about this ending? The short and funny answer is, Homestuck has finally completed its long journey over the rainbow, and become the anime it was always meant to be. The longer and less funny answer will need some reflection. Maybe some day I will say some things about it. For now, I will leave you to draw your own conclusions.
The animation itself had a fairly complicated production history. I actually storyboarded it about four years ago. In fact, some of the shots I visualized before I even began Homestuck. I'd like to extend very special thanks to Angela Sham, who took the reins on the animation while it was in progress, and worked with me closely on it for about a year until it was done. She's a great animator, and I'm quite excited that she's continuing to work with us on the game.
It probably goes without saying, but ending this story is a personally significant moment as well. I could say more about this too, but I'd rather not fill the news section with too many words today. For now, all that's left to do is express some appreciation. Whether you've been here from the beginning, hopped on board somewhere along the way, or only heard of it last week and made an insane dash through the archive to catch up in time for the conclusion, I mean this sincerely:
Edit: one more thing. If you're curious about whether there will be anything resembling an epilogue to this ending, yes, I've been thinking about that for some time. It'll take a while to produce though, whatever specific form it ends up taking. Working on Collide took months, and came right down to the wire. I've got more time now though obviously. But that said, I'm not in a huge hurry at this point. Keep an eye out here for developments. There should be plenty of other news in coming months too.
Couple things! First, We Love Fine has released a series of cool shirts based on art from the Collide animation.
Second, all those shirt designs plus a bunch of other illustrations from Collide are also available as prints. You can get then in the What Pumpkin Store, which has just been relaunched primarily to offer prints, but also a few other items left over from the previous WP store.
Edit: Also, in case you haven't noticed yet, if you buy the full Homestuck discography on bandcamp right now, it is very heavily discounted. Not a bad time to grab the whole set, if you've been meaning to.
Thanks to the extensive group of artists who contributed to the end of act animation. Clearly it was a significant undertaking, and it wouldn't have been possible without so many great artists enthusiastically collaborating on it for months. Also thanks to Seth, Toby, Malcolm and Joren for the awesome music. It's currently available on bandcamp.
The panels posted between now and 4/13 were made by WP artists Adrienne, Angela, Gina, and Rah. They're really good!!! We're almost there. Act 7 drops on 4/13.
Here is the plan. Starting today, there will be 6 days of updates (about 125 total pages). Then a brief pause. Then on 4/6, I'll post the END OF ACT 6 animation.
That should immediately be followed by 7 days of updates (about 40 total pages), ending with an update on 4/13, the 7th anniversary of Homestuck. That update will contain ACT 7 in its entirety.
The current 125 page stretch was drawn by a few guest artists. Gina Chacon, Mallory Dyer, and Adrienne Garcia (all artists for WP). The panels they did are very good, and I think make for a nice runway leading up to the final animations. Of course there are a lot of other great contributing artists to all that content as well. Thanks for the patience during the Omegapause. I hope you enjoy the conclusion to Homestuck.
The second Paradox Space book is available to order. It contains all the stories not published in the first book (which you can find here). It also contains a bonus story I wrote which is only available in the book. You can see a preview for that story here.
Welcome to the shout out zone, here are a couple of shout outs. The first shout out is,
NEO-KOSMOS: A comic by my friend Shelby (who did all Calliope art for HS), and her friends Amber (works on Steven Universe) and Adrienne (also does a lot for HS). They've been working really nicely with the MSPA format. It's a quick read to catch up, and it really feels like the story has been taking off lately. I'd recommend you at least read up to a very cool animation they just posted (which includes a song by Toby). If you're looking for a fun story to follow over the next few months while you wait for HS, I think this is a good pick!
The next shout out is UNDERTALE, by my friend Toby. I know I mentioned it on the KS update but it probably bears repeating here too. Also I guess it's not so much a "signal boost" since by now UT is PRETTY WELL KNOWN! Let's get real, Toby is probably the one who should be giving HS shout outs from now on. Though it's not about giving UT a boost in popularity so much as a reminder that I believe he has made a fun and special game, and if you haven't gotten around to playing it yet, I think you should! It's an experience that anyone who likes games should have.