Monday, November 10, 2014

Sneak Peek: GZ The Board Game

Chose good or evil. Play as a soldier, sorcerer, psychic, strongman, speedster, or inventor. Travel the universe recruiting powerful allies and fighting dangerous foes. Be the first to complete your goal for your side of the balance and win.

Based on my novel, Chessmen: Opening Moves; anything that happened to the Chessmen in the book could happen to you.

And it's coming along beautifully. Today you get a sneak peek at a few of the cool people you can play as on the board game. Up to 6 players will play one of the character types mentioned completely at random. Each one has their own strengths and weaknesses that you can build on during gameplay (averaging an hour for 4 players). I'm not going to give up all their stats and game mechanics yet, but I think you'll enjoy what they can do.

The Sorcerer: This is the only type that begins the game able to play spells. He's also the major reason that PC types are handed out at random. Also to balance this, it is more than possible for other players to wind up using spells... and losing them. The sorcerer gets a sweet bonus on using his spells towards his goals.

The Strongman: Decent in a fight with a bonus for dealing with monsters. Yes, monsters. The monsters and creatures from Chessmen are just waiting to make a  meal of you. They include, mutant butterflies, stinging swarms, a giant monstrosity, and more. It's a wild universe out there. The strongman is ready for it.

The Soldier: Good in a fight! And there will be several of those for every player. As the soldier you get a special bonus for weapons that you find on your journey. Be ready for anything and seek your fortune.

The Psychic: You gain bonuses to avoiding traps and recruiting allies because you see just a little further ahead than everyone else. Not the best in combat, but recruiting powerful allies is nothing to sneeze at.

The Speedster: With a bonus on movement for the board, you can get places faster than everyone else. You're also harder to hit by enemies Want to stay a few steps ahead and out of range? The speedster does just that.









The Inventor: He's more or less the weakest to start out with, but he's also the easiest to build up on. He gets a bonus to any item (including weapons) to make them more efficient for his needs. Give him an ally and he becomes the underestimated threat on the table.

This is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg when it comes to this game. You'll meet the characters from the novel and go through some of what they went through. You don't have to read the novel to play the game, but it will make the whole experience shine just a little more. But you'll be able to enjoy this game straight out of the box without knowing the story at all. I'll have more peeks coming up as we go, so stay tuned!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Halloween News 2014

Maniac
What better way to kick off Halloween with GZ than an update on the nasties that are about to hit the books? Well, buckle your seatbelt because only the baddest baddies are coming out to play in upcoming stories. You're going to love it.

Two books are coming up. First is Chaos Rising, slated for this holiday season. In it you'll get a ton of super baddies making a hero's day difficult. Maniac, the Hearse, Prof. Zombie, the Engineer, Stormy Knight, and a slew of artifacts that could destroy the world. You won't want to miss out. Aiming for the Kindle price to be .99 cents. Don't know what paperback will be yet.

The second book will be GZ Tales Volume 2. While I don't  know exactly how many stories I'm going to stuff it with, you will see the following baddies:

MAESTRO: He and his castle will make their published debut in, Castle of the Demon King. Anubis and Horus must rescue a female Starknight from his dungeon, but it's a all a game to Maestro. Who will win? This is just the tip of the iceberg for upcoming Maestro storylines!






DEMON JACK: He appeared in volume one and he's coming back. After being hospitalized, Carter Henderson has been on specialized medication to keep him from turning into the monster. That's all about to change when a new doctor doesn't think he needs the medication any more. Blacktide and Nyhtwulf must hunt down Demon Jack or a fair chunk of New York will feel the consequences.







CHESIRE: An invisible killer is mutilating the homeless in New York City. World Legion agents, Anthony James and Panther Steele work to track him down before his body count spikes. All they have are the words of one witness; "Look for the knife in his smile."









THE PIRANHA: We take a trip back into the southern Louisiana swamps where the Gator lives. Someone is killing and eating the peaceful people of the deep swamps. The Gator, reluctant hero, is't standing by for it. It's HIS swamp after all.

That's just four of the awesome tales that will be coming to you sometime in the new year. I'm hoping to also have Chessmen 2 by Summer.  Happy Halloween everyone!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Audio reading: Imaginary Enemy

Today I direct you to the embedded video for a reading of one of the tales from my book of short stories, GZ Tales, Vol 1. Now I do have a couple of spots where I trip up because I have internal spasms from MS, but as you can see, I don't let that stop me. So I hope you enjoy the reading of Imaginary Enemy!



If you would like to get the book for kindle or in paperback, check out the link to my author's page in the upper right of the screen.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Guest Artist: Amie Key!

Today I bring you a talented young lady from Columbus, Ohio. Her guest artist submission was none other than Bast of Ankhforce. Wow, what a job she did! Just look at that! From the interview, I think you'll agree that this lady is up and coming. I think we will all be on the look out for what she comes up with! As always, you can click on an image for a better look!

GZ: So, Amie, how long have you been an artist?

Amie: I've always been doodling. When I was younger I traced stuff by using the light through sliding glass doors. In '94 Lion King came out and I tried drawing those free hand. I had really good art teachers. They taught me a lot.

GZ: Far out. So what kind of career do you want in art?

Amie: I've never really sought out a career in art primarily because I like drawing what I want. My career has been working with animals. I would love to find time to draw and sell art on the side though.

GZ: I think working with animals is really cool. But then, you aren't for hire yet?

Amie: I am coming back into drawing after a 10 year break. Trying to get a tablet/scanner and photoshop/manga pro. So currently not for hire. I'm fast at doing line art and drawing characters, so in the future I will be doing those at least.

GZ: We can see that by the examples here. So what is your favorite style?

Amie: My favorite style is Anime/manga. Jim Lee's pencils I adore though.

GZ: From all of this, do you have any projects you want to pursue?

Amie: Right now I'm writing a story I will make a comic out of. I've been primarily a writer for the last 10 years.

GZ: I bet that will be something to look forward to. What inspires you most in your work?

Amie: I'm inspired mostly by seeing other really nice work and some of my older stuff. I'm hoping to put out a comic worthy of being seen and read.

GZ: Well you seem to be off to a good start. Lots of luck to you!

Big thanks to Amie Key for being a guest artist today! While she's currently not for hire, keep an eye peeled! This young lady is a future talent just waiting to take off!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Guest Artist: Scott "Fuzzy" Joseph!

Independent artists are their own special breed and I love to share space with them. Today's guest has his own style and flair and he's published too! As you know, to be in theme with this blog, guest artists choose a GZ character (any GZ character) and draw up their own rendition of him or her. Scott chose Anhur from Ankhforce and the result is pretty darn cool. But this, as always, is just the tip of the iceberg. 

I asked Scott some questions about his work.

GZ: How long have you been an artist?

Scott:  I've been an artist since I was a child. I would copy the pages from my comics and draw on any surface I could. My father would tell me that I would draw on the underside of tables and the bunk bed that I shared with my brother.

GZ: That sounds like an awesome Dad! What kind of career do you want in art?

Scott: I want a career doing what I love, and I love creating art. I would also love to be part of something that has an impact on someone else. Something that inspires and encourages. Ideally I would love to get into game designs. Conceptual art for characters and monsters for either video games or table top war games.

GZ: I can totally relate since GZ aims to inspire youth with disabilities. Are you currently for hire?

Scott: I'm always for hire. That's what's fun about this whole art business, is that many opportunities come along and you have to decide if it's going to be something you embrace or neglect.


GZ: Speaking of that, I see you are published! What can you tell us about Patch Hawkins?

Scott: Oh man, Patch Hawkins, that's one of my kids right there. It all started out as a LEGO figure I made so that I had a cool hero to play with alongside my 4 year old daughter. I would have him go on adventures it was fun. I then thought about turning him into a comic book. I had recently started Panda Fuzz Ink (A self publishing comic book company) with a good friend Anthony Ray Bench, who is a great writer, and threw the Patch Hawkins comic together.
Patch is your 80's action hero with your 90's comic book violence. There's lots of blood, lots of one liners and lots of Patch getting out of ridiculous situations. What makes Patch real to me is his goal, to avenge the disappearance of his wife and kids during an attack by the beastly race of Khareeshians. I had a Kickstarter for it in 2013 and a lot of friends and family supported it, now as a result, it's on ComiXology, you gotta check it out!

GZ: Well, we are posting the link to that right HERE and echo that sentiment to our readers! Please do check it out, people! It looks way cool! Now, Scott, where is this 'Fuzzy' business from?

Scott: During the Tattoo Apprenticeship I had, my mentor Tattoo Bee, bestowed the nickname of 'Fuzzy' to me. I'm a big hairy guy and throughout the apprenticeship I had these awesome mutton chops.If you want to improve as an artist. you need to find something like a mentor..Surround yourself with artists and creatives better than you, it will push your art in a positive direction. I learned more artistically in my apprenticeship than I did getting a Bachelor's Degree in Fine Art.

GZ: Nicknames always have the coolest stories, don't they? Do you have any upcoming projects we should know about? 

Scott: Currently I'm working on Patch Hawkins Issue #2! It's exciting. I handed over the writing reigns over to Writer Anthony Ray Bench this time around to see where we can go with the book, and it looks like it's gonna be a beast of a book.We're delving deeper into how sick the Khareeshians are and get a look into the supporting cast of characters while also getting to know Patch more.

GZ: Sounds smoking hot.

Here you have it folks, and you definitely need to check out the stylings of Scott "Fuzzy" Joseph. You can do that at the following links:

www.ravenborn.com His personal page, loaded to the gills with art!

His Facebook page, with cool updates!

Links open a new page and as always, click on images for a closer and cooler view! Big thanks to Scott for being with us on GZ!


If you want to be a guest artist, get the details right HERE!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Building in Minecraft?

Yes indeed. It was recently suggested to me that I build locations from Galaxy Zento in Minecraft. And why not? I can give tours of some locations that will be or have shown up in the stories. The first place I'm working on is Maestro's castle. It's one of GZ's deadliest places. Maestro is making his debut in my next book of short stories; GZ Tales Volume 2 (currently in the works). He puts Anubis and Horus through some terrifying ordeals and you won't want to miss it.

It's unfortunate that this tour version of his home will lack the deadly magics hidden in every wall, but you'll get the idea well enough. Maestro loves intruders and enjoys torturing them. If their plight amuses him enough, he may even reward them (usually with their lives).

While the tour version is solid, his actual home is anything but easy to navigate. Rooms shift and change, walls appear to block your progress. Then there's the dungeon.

Eventually, I'll make it so you can tour it yourself (once I figure that out) on your Xbox 360 via online. But you can also bet there will be a ton of pics going onto the Facebook page and Google+.

There will be other cool locations made as well, but I don't want to give away all the goodies here. OH what the heck:

The Radioactive Sandwich (interstellar bar)
King Falcon's Palace
The Royal Palace of Chyssia (Chessmen location)

Just to name a few. Just another way to check out the huge universe of GZ! Stay tuned!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Character Power Meters

The GZ character power meter is a selection of stats that show you just how powerful the character really is (or isn't). Stats in GZ are ranked from 1-10. 1 is your basic human at almost minimum. No one goes lower than 1. 10 is godlike proportions (but there is another scale for gods). These stats fall into 5 categories (pretty simplified).

Strength: This covers not only a characters lifting ability, but some endurance as well. It also tells you how powerful energy blasts can get (though energy types have their own minimum scales of damage that may exceed strength). So if a characters strength is higher than the minimum that an energy type can do, the character can increase the damage of the energy blasts. On this scale you could see a level one lifting around 25-50 lbs with general ease. A level ten has no trouble lifting an aircraft carrier.

Endurance: How long does it take a character to get tired? How long can they hold up that aircraft carrier? A 1 means you may only have a few minutes, while a 10 means you can do it all day long. Its basically how long you can do any one task before you have to stop.

Speed: So how fast can the character travel? 1 is your most basic human speed, maybe 15 mph at the best. 10 is so fast the image of the person lingers after they're gone. Speed is pretty straight forward, but requires the next stat for control.

Agility: From basic balance to acrobatics. This is a characters dexterity and ability to not fall flat on their face when attempting some heroic or villainous feat. While a 1 doesn't make you clumsy, you're no tight rope walker either. A 10 can do a handstand and balance on a fingernail.

Mentality: This is how intelligent a character is and how powerful psychic abilities may be. Problem solving, deduction, and ability to understand what's going on all fall into this stat. Academics govern part of how high it goes. A 1 has general education and understanding, while a 10 has the knowledge of the cosmos.

Coming up I will be doing some Power Meter spotlights so you can see just how powerful some GZ characters are! Compare them with some of your other favorite characters to see how they stack up. I have a complete scale on the the Galaxy Zento Wiki and you can check it out HERE. You can also check out several characters information and power levels on the wiki already! Look up Ankhforce or the Chessmen and see for yourself.