Speed Death Tournament 2020, Round 2 / Mayes Meindert vs. Lucy

Speed Death Tournament 2020, Round 2 / Mayes Meindert vs. Lucy

Speed Death Tournament 2020, Round 2 — Mayes Meindert vs. Lucy

653 points
Page 1Page 2Page 3

Crit level: No preference
tags: drug use, lucy, mayes meindert, needles

731 points
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Crit level: No preference

Critiques & Comments
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Community Manager
# 17   Posted: Feb 23 2020, 10:53 AM
Thanks for the feedback everyone, I'm really happy with what I got done Fred your animated stuff is nice and I love your color palette in this as well as how you did Mayes.

Also Mayes will be in good paws now and a guaranteed way to never do drugs again : )

Fred v2.0.1
# 16   Posted: Feb 23 2020, 06:03 AM
Originally the cat was going to bring him to AA under the line of getting him "what he needs" after which Mayes and Lucy would have been helping each other out of their respective addictions and learned to be a bit happier together (there was also smut involved).
THEN he woulda died stupidly.

Thank all for the feedback, I'm planning my time a bit better this round.

# 15   Posted: Feb 20 2020, 10:28 PM
Fred: not much to say on the art, it’s pretty much perfect to me. Sequentially everything also flows perfectly and in that sense the story flows well. The hard part is there is like a pretty dead story here. Like it was just an exposition then death. That being said it was an amazing exposition. Maybe storyboard with prioritized elements so that if you find yourself running out of time on the art you can know which panels are necessary and which panels can be scrapped if pressed for time.

A & G
I’m not gonna lie when I first read meyes’ bio I thought for sure it was going to be a lousy character. Now that I know him, wow what depth. This was such a good matchup and I like the way you approached it. Just remember though in comics clarity is key. If your audience doesn’t understand what’s going on, then there will be major issues with the audience. In my opinion it’s better to resort to narration rather than have the audience not understanding what they just saw.

# 14   Posted: Feb 20 2020, 06:51 PM
ArtsandGoodies: I really enjoyed the vertical scroll and the use of spacing to create appropriate time lapse between images while scrolling. The overall execution with panel positioning and your art-style all came together to create a fairly trippy and interesting journey through the minds of the characters interacting. I also found it interesting the killing blow was the speech bubble being a pop-art style spiky action bubble. I did not expect that.

I wish there was more suspense and build up to that death though, maybe a POV shot from Lucy with her hand outstretched as she approaches him with his back turned? I have some other minor nitpicks but overall you did well, I think the most challenging thing about your character is having a death battle with a character who's only motivations are passive towards others and self-destructive. This was a good and interesting match up.

Fred: I absolutely love your art style and the pixel animations were all pretty fantastic, though I think you should only animate repetitive actions and movements and otherwise just stick to the visual story telling of the panel's composition themselves.

Now, I tried reading the character bio, but I didn't read the first comic for Lucy, so I walked into this not having any expectations. The story and ending weren't nearly as satisfying as the wonderful pixel art style and animations, you have Mayes commiting a murder, immediately going to a drug dealer without any money or anything to offer, and than running away from the dealer into an AA meeting to get stabbed by the dealer, while Lucy is just present. The Dealer's motive is to make an example of him for owing them money, but the there is no context as to how killing him publicly in a room full of people at an AA meeting would accomplish that. Despite this, it's still fun to read because your compositions, art and paneling really help intrigue a viewer to see more, but this is just my thoughts of this self contained issue. I really want to see more of your style and art, and I think you could have fleshed this out a bit more to have Lucy's encounter with Mayes be a psychic one that perhaps led to the death rather than something totally unrelated to your characters actions.

Overall, great work on the art and paneling and everything, I would love to see less animation on panels that don't have repetitive action/motion (spinning a knife into frame shouldn't be animated, it would look better visually to just transition to the knife already being held in view the next panel), and have more of the most interesting element of your character, the trippy, psycho telepath side of her potential and her seeming inability to control it. Really Impressed in that style you've got. Really good.

Global Moderator
# 13   Posted: Feb 20 2020, 06:50 PM
ART- You really went somewhere with this writing. It was such a blast to read and the mindscape used as your canvas really made for some great visuals. The pair of them melding and switching bodies had to be my favorite bit. This is such a fascinating exploration of characters of like mind and also so different. You're really finding creative ways to use this passive and otherwise insular character kill their opponents in really unexpected ways. I really hope you make it to the next round to see what else Mayes has in store.

FRED- This one felt more straightforward than your first round. The exploration of dreams and this SDT being a recurring nightmare was really intriguing me, and when you set up Lucy in a support group ready to divulge more I was ready to hear it. Your opponent almost felt like a sidebar nuisance that cockblocked events and plot I really wanted to know

# 12   Posted: Feb 19 2020, 09:27 PM
Arts - The emotions here were *chef’s kiss* very well done. It’s slighly painful to read, especially seeing how happy and sweet Mayes looked when he was in his field before. I loved how you blended Mayes and Lucy’s experiences as well, with her family showing up and their hands switching with the repeated injection and drinking scenes. Creative death too, if initially confusing, and it was clever how Lucy’s blood ran down to make the dead flowers.

Crit-wise maybe, the repetition on page 3 was a bit too much? If you want to dial up the intensity, maybe you could have zoomed in a bit closer each time, made them shakier or put the panels more closely together, so it wouldn’t feel so uniform. Also be careful with your jaws - a couple of times Mayes’ snout looks like a separate entity to the rest of the head, the upper jaw bending upwards and appearing broken.

Fred - I love your rendition of Mayes! He’s just super appealing to look at. I like that you dig into the implications of Mayes’ addiction like the borrowing money from dodgy people and sadly getting killed because of it.

I agree with the other comments though about the emotions not hitting as hard and the situations feeling disconnected.

Web Dev
# 11   Posted: Feb 19 2020, 04:15 PM
I don't have time for critiques, but I wanted to say that I thoroughly enjoyed both of these! Both of these characters are tragic in really interesting ways, and I want to see more from both of them! I know Fred ran out of time for the whole thing she wanted to do with her comic, and I'm sad that we don't get to see that version, but this was still really nice to look at and just an A+ experience overall. I can't wait for more of this fantastic approach to sequential art!

# 10   Posted: Feb 19 2020, 08:10 AM
Arts: Wow, Mayes is not just sad, but the kind of sad who can't keep it from destroying those around him. Lucy was in a unique position, one that may have allowed her to help, but instead it just allowed her to be sucked into his downward spiral.  It took me a little to realize just what it was that killed Lucy. I think it's a good idea (and the Field of Guilt coming out of it), but I wonder if there could have been a better way to both break the fourth wall and keep it framed in a way that makes it more readable.

Fred: It's kind of ironic how, compared to last comic, the story and imagery are much more grounded and mundane, and less flashy. The animation suits a twitchy addict who may not be in his right mind, and it's kind of shame you didn't take advantage of your medium to really play with that. That said, it is an improvement how this one reads much more clearly as sequential storytelling compared to the last one. I particularly liked that bit where Mayes snuck in. The characters didn't really have anything to do with each other here, though...

# 9   Posted: Feb 18 2020, 05:06 AM
Fred- heaps of atmosphere and style.
I can't fault the visuals here- the animation never felt overused or distracting to me. Its placement IMO was always suitable and pushed the emotions of the scene. (all of the 1st page/ the first panel on pg 3 were my favorite examples of this)

The story/ writing was pretty offbeat, I enjoyed it, but I don't know if it would have been as impactful without the strengths of the visuals backing it up.
The ending admittedly fell a little flat for me too, I'm guessing Lucy's comment was a follow up to the "every time I hear the voices a little bit less" line?  But because a fair bit of action and dialogue happened in between these two lines, it felt kind of awkward and disjointed.

Arts- wow again, you've hit some intense deep emotions in your writing, its really impressive. The scrolling format was absolutely perfect for capturing this trailing, rambling string of thoughts and feelings. I got totally swept along for the ride.
Also admittedly as someone who fought Lucy in the last round, I'm kicking myself for not seeing the potential of Lucy's abilities from a story-telling point of view. Having her enter Maye's dreams/ mind was an interesting approach. I dug the direction you went for.
The death itself was creative for sure, I also caught what had happened during my first read. However, I think the visuals let the concept down a bit. Within a dreamscape, I'm sure there are lots of dynamic ways Mayes emotions could have pummeled Lucy to death, so I'm not sure why you went with a spikey speech bubble?
Art crits have been covered by past comments so I wouldn't repeat.

This was a fantastic battle, it wouldn't be easy to vote.

Fred v2.0.1
# 8   Posted: Feb 15 2020, 06:03 AM
There was going to be so much more after the aa meeting I just didn't have time u_u

# 7   Posted: Feb 15 2020, 05:44 AM
(Hey, this is my first critique, please feel free to let me know how I can critique better if you think I'm a bad critic)

Arts, I really liked your comic. Writing wise it was probably my favorite this round. There were really interesting and deep themes going on and the part where they switched places and stuff gave me some cool End of Evangelion nostalgia. I'd say I liked everything except that I didn't really get how he killed her and was confused until I reread it, and even then I was like, "why'd she did tho?". Artwise, I'll say you Excel at a lot of things I wish I were better at. You can be really creative with camera angles and your panel layout is never bland. Sometimes your characters can look a little Play-Doughy. I think having more prominent shapes in your characters could help with the Play-Doh thing. Other than that you had my attention the whole time and told a cool story and even blew up some of my expectations! Great job.

Fred, I love these pixel animations, they are so smooth. OoO the vibrant colors all blended a lot better in this one than last round, it felt like looking at a sunset. Gorgeous. My favorite character was the drug dealer cat guy and I think you got me to laugh twice. The two situations felt a bit disconnected from each other and everything happened in a "just happened to be" sort of way at the ending. The character interaction between the both of your characters was literally just "um, hello?" The ending gag was funny, but at the same time it felt very unsatisfying to me. I feel like there was so much you could have done with Mayes stumbling into an AA meeting that would have been interesting to see, but ultimately nothing came of it. I did love that stabbing animation though.

# 6   Posted: Feb 14 2020, 10:51 PM
Arts: Honestly, this story felt so compelling. It was like a strange heroin trip which is perfect for a drug abuser like Mayes. And tie it in with the alcoholic Lucy made for one strong substance abuse dread. It actually portrays a sense of compassion for both characters instead of random senseless killing. It makes Lucy's death feel that more impact, and sentimental to put an end to a long story like Lucy's. But I agree with Kubo, straying from using dialogue text and using some more rustic hand drawn text helps set a more ethereal scene. And how was Lucy killed? By the actual exclamation bubble? It felt jarring, like a sudden fourth wall break. If there were other instances of the fourth wall breaking down during the whole drug induced scene it would've been more convincing. It felt sudden, I dunno, I was confused there. Otherwise, good comic!

Fred: Honestly, I never really understood the gif style of comics. Its.. a comic. It throws me off, sorry. But it is very visually appealing. Though in the story Lucy claims she experiences the lives of others before they die (from what I can understand), but it wasn't really shown in the case of Mayes. It felt like it was just pure coincidence that she took liberty to prove her point further.

# 5   Posted: Feb 13 2020, 08:42 PM
Arts: You took on a pretty big challenge: visualizing the abstract and I'll say you did pretty well! The beauty of a scrolling comic is that controlling the pacing is a lot easier and you lean into that very well. Only two things stood out to mean worth talking about: On page two, when Lucy is being attacked by Mayes' pain and memories, it took me a moment to realize what was happening. We had talked about this scene while you were working on it so I think I caught on fast, but Im worried that using straight text made it look like it was just floating dialogue. I think drawing it by hand and actually interacting with the figure would produce a clearer image, plus you can shape it a little you look more terrifying or animalistic.  The second was Lucy's death. She's killed by Mayes' scream/fear/desperation made manifest which smashes her up against the confines one the comic. I love this! What I recommend, however, is to go further. Use a dynamic angle, draw the exclamation bubble by hand, make it gnarled and thorny like a distorted version of Mayes' field. Its an amazing visual as it is, I especially love how Lucy's blood turns into the grass and blood flowers of a fake field. Great job with this comic!

Fred: I commend you on your super clean and clear pixel art! Your character designs are sharp and even better than the last comic! I really love the color palette that you chose and these GIF comics are really killing me. Great Job!

Community Manager
# 4   Posted: Feb 13 2020, 02:45 PM
Fred this was fantastic, I love how you make it all so simple, it's hard to simplify and you do a fantastic job with it in this and your color pallet is also really nice.

# 3   Posted: Feb 13 2020, 09:32 AM
Gah, I hate/love when two fantastic characters fight each other like this. These are great comics and I hope you two are really proud of yourselves! Well done!

Arts: First of all, and I am sure you saw this coming kilometers away. Where's. The. Dong!?
I feel this is such an emotional comic, the way the two of the characters were sort of bonding with each other, by seeing temselves in the same situation, and trying to help. Realizing how deep in the dirt they were. Great comic, I love Mayes.

Fred: I think you're another of the people in here that perfectly carry the spirit of VOID in their comics, and I love that. Morbid humor. This was a really cute comic, or you know, as cute as it can be described lol
I'm glad Lucy is finally getting help, unfortunately no longer fazed by death.

Community Manager
# 2   Posted: Feb 12 2020, 11:29 PM
Wow this an ordeal, I tried to go full crazy for this and I hope i did a good job. Since I didn't have time for thumbs here's a little content warning. There is drug use in this and some needles.

Fred v2.0.1
# 1   Posted: Feb 5 2020, 03:18 PM

Comic Details -

Type: Speed Death Tournament Match
Drawing Time: 1 week
Ended: Feb 20th, 2020
Votes Cast: 32
Page Views: 533
Winner: Fred v2.0.1

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