Great Escalations 2022 Round 1 / Aiden vs. Poof

Great Escalations 2022 Round 1 — Aiden vs. Poof

by Bobert

This comic has been rated suitable for all ages by its creator(s)

Icon for Aiden47.7%
273 points
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Crit level: Open to any comments or critiques
I didn't want to exhaust myself with a large comic so I reduced the scope of what I planned and I hope regardless of whether I win or lose that this feels like a cohesive story.
tags:


by Firefly

This comic has been rated suitable for teens and up by its creator(s)

Icon for Poof52.3%
299 points
Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4Page 5Page 6Page 7Page 8

Crit level: Open to any comments or critiques
tags:




Critiques & Comments
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Firefly
Artist
29 comments
# 12   Posted: Oct 9 2022, 06:11 PM
I really want to fight (make friends with) Poof with one of my characters, they're adorable.

Firefly - As it's been mentioned, I think you could practice speech bubbles a bit more (they're definitely difficult!) to make your comics even better. I loved the interaction they had, and the ending just breaks my heart! I hope Poof gets so many friends!
Quote from: Snowy

I've got to know, which character?

And thank you! I've been working on my speech bubbles, they're going to look a lot nicer for my next comic.

Snowy
Artist
192 comments
# 11   Posted: Oct 9 2022, 01:43 PM
I really want to fight (make friends with) Poof with one of my characters, they're adorable.

Firefly - As it's been mentioned, I think you could practice speech bubbles a bit more (they're definitely difficult!) to make your comics even better. I loved the interaction they had, and the ending just breaks my heart! I hope Poof gets so many friends!

Bobert - I think you could definitely lean fully into b&w comics if you practiced spot blacking a bit more, and made more intentional empty spaces. Your expressions are fun to see, and I really enjoy that at the end of yours (despite the maiming), Aiden considers Poof a friend!

I'd love to see more comics from both of you, they were very nice!

Fluffsamasprime
Artist
481 comments
# 10   Posted: Oct 8 2022, 11:11 AM
Poof is winning over the hearts and minds of void with their damn cuteness!!
These were both quite entertaining to read.
Bobert- always good to know when not to over exert yourself on comics
Firefly- poof! No! You have friends!!

Firefly
Artist
29 comments
# 9   Posted: Oct 6 2022, 08:33 AM
Firefly: You've already improved on your backgrounds, I can tell! And you've already got a pretty solid grasp of panel layouts. I definitely think you're gonna do great here, and you can only get better from here on out. I'd say the next thing to work on would be your speech bubbles--they're not bad, but I think there's room for improvement. I'd recommend checking out https://entervoid.com/index.php/topic,12907.0.html for some tips on how to make your speech bubbles look clean and concise! I'll also echo what the others have said that there's room for improvement with regards to clarity. But, more than anything, I want to commend you for drawing so much horse body lol. Horses aren't easy, but it really seems like you didn't shy away from drawing the horse half of Aiden and that deserves kudos.
Quote from: Heavenbat

It's funny you mentioned the speech bubbles because I was just looking at the others' comics and thinking about how nice their speech bubbles looked. I'll be looking at these tips and working on my bubbles so my next comic looks better!

And I had so many pictures of horses pulled up for references you have no idea haha.

Thank you for the tips!

Heavenbat
Global Moderator
232 comments
# 8   Posted: Oct 5 2022, 11:05 PM
Bobert: I think the core idea you had was a pretty good one, especially once I read what you were going for. When reading the actual comic I wasn't able to make the connection that Aiden was recording a demonstration for the sword; I thought he was just recording a silly LARP type video or something. It's a bit of an interesting juxtaposition, because while the motives may have not been explained well, everything else feels like we're *told* what's happening rather than being *shown* what's going on. Rather than actively seeing Aiden struggling to hold the sword, we just get dialogue about Aiden telling us how hard it is to hold. The same with the scar; we're told, rather directly, what specifically was damaged with the scar--which feels a bit unnatural. If my friend got seriously injured through my own actions, I don't think I'd take the time to list off all their body parts that had been affected. I also think the black backgrounds, while they worked well for the dread and panic for the last page, definitely did not work out for the first page. I have no idea where this is taking place, or where the two characters are in relation to each other. It kinda just feels like they're standing in an empty void (ha). That said, that emotional gut punch at the end, coupled with the absurdity of calling an ambulance for a plushie, really hit home. Ow my heart

Firefly: You've already improved on your backgrounds, I can tell! And you've already got a pretty solid grasp of panel layouts. I definitely think you're gonna do great here, and you can only get better from here on out. I'd say the next thing to work on would be your speech bubbles--they're not bad, but I think there's room for improvement. I'd recommend checking out https://entervoid.com/index.php/topic,12907.0.html for some tips on how to make your speech bubbles look clean and concise! I'll also echo what the others have said that there's room for improvement with regards to clarity. But, more than anything, I want to commend you for drawing so much horse body lol. Horses aren't easy, but it really seems like you didn't shy away from drawing the horse half of Aiden and that deserves kudos.

snager
Artist
388 comments
# 7   Posted: Oct 4 2022, 11:24 AM
hey Firefly and Bobert! I was so excited to see y'all's battle, and neither of you disappointed me! both such cute cuddly, BRAND NEW creatures, and two such new artists!  I think this was a really good pair up! Aiden, a name that means 'little fire' who is a black smith, vs. Poof, a dragon that is little but can't breath fire? amazing. good luck, you two!

Bobert: I LOVE that India ink. your mark making is really nice. your story feels like a speed battle, and two weeks is SO LITTLE TIME, ACTUALLY to make a whole ass comic, but when you add traditional media into the mix? even harder. you really bit off a lot to chew and I appreciate that. that all said, there's some craftsmanship issues I'd like to address. you usually leave a white halo around the characters to avoid losing the lineart in the black background. but for half the price, you could have just left the background blank unless you really NEEDED to invoke that feeling of inky dread. instead, we feel like we're in a haunted house ride for the whole comic. you could have also made a gray wash to soften your backgrounds while still helping the characters stand out.
another Big Issue, Easy Fix: the DPI got crushed when you resized and we lost a lot of detail in your finer lineart. I'm sure if you ask around in the discord, people will help problem shoot this with you to teach you how to resize without losing pixels. this is one of the steepest learning curves in digital art, and it's not fun or pretty to learn about, but it's the most important thing! after all, it doesn't matter how sick one's trad lines look if one can't get them digitized right /u_u\

also i think it's fair to talk about your story! it's nice and choppy, almost like a wonderful world of gumball sketch, but with a dramatic ending. it is sweet to call Poof a friend.


Firefly: We were all really hype to see poof in action and this comic was so creative! the gems in the fire place being something a Real Dragon :tm: would want and Poof being drawn to them is such nice characterization, and cute as well. them burning their own tail is a nice double-scar too. And just the way you tell us so much about Aiden by showing his workshop is really good story telling! You've got great chops and talent, and once you get faster at drawing, you're going to be a real star!

Firefly
Artist
29 comments
# 6   Posted: Oct 3 2022, 04:25 PM
Firefly - Poof is such a baby 🥺 how dare you make me feel emotions for a fictional plush toy! The ending stabs me in the heart and knowing he’s in a death tournament is very upsetting.

I actually didn’t have trouble seeing what the scar was, but the action that caused the scar was very unclear. We see the ax wobble, but we don’t see it fall; Aiden is simply scarred now. Seeing it connect with his face with some motion lines would have helped. You don’t always have to show the action itself, but if you don’t, you need to frame it more clearly. For example, we see a shadow over Poof, or there’s a sound effect for a large clang, then we see Aiden clutching his face.

Also, between pages 2 and 3, the position of the characters completely swaps. In comics and film, there’s a thing called the 180 degree rule, which means the characters should always have the same left-right position to each other. You can swing the camera around 180 degrees - so sometimes we might see person A in the foreground, then person B - but we always stay on the same side of them. You can break it or switch up the view, but there has to be a good reason or action. Here, there doesn’t seem to be one.

But all in all really good job for your first battle! Most of what I mentioned are little things even seasoned artists can get wrong so don’t worry about it too much. Welcome to Void! :)
Quote from: TheCydork

Thank you for the thoughtful comment and tips!

Communicating action through my comics is something I definitely want to work on. If I were to redo this comic I think I would color the gem on Aiden's circlet to make it stand out more, then when the pickax falls, have A. an extra panel that shows bits of the circlet on the ground, B. A panel showing the ax make contact with Aiden, or C. A 'blank' panel showing a sound effect like what you mentioned. Either way I think I needed an extra panel in there to make the transition to the scar more smooth.

As for what you mentioned with Poof and Aiden swapping, my reasoning for doing so was to keep the flow of the speech bubbles. Aiden had a lot to say, but Poof didn't. In the future I could try to rethink how to portray a similar scene!

But I'm glad you like Poof! The most important thing to me is to entertain when it comes to my art and writing, so I'm glad I seem to have succeeded in that! I'm happy to be on Void and I look forward to making lots more comics!

TheCydork
Artist
606 comments
# 5   Posted: Oct 3 2022, 11:04 AM
Bobert - Yess a traditional comic! I like the use of the stark black background to set the serious mood. I’m with Jelly in that the comic wasn’t very clear wrt the recording and the scar; I’m also confused as to how the sword seemed to slice of Poof’s wings and such from behind, since if he was recording he would have been facing the sword? The ending though.. oof ;;

Firefly - Poof is such a baby 🥺 how dare you make me feel emotions for a fictional plush toy! The ending stabs me in the heart and knowing he’s in a death tournament is very upsetting.

I actually didn’t have trouble seeing what the scar was, but the action that caused the scar was very unclear. We see the ax wobble, but we don’t see it fall; Aiden is simply scarred now. Seeing it connect with his face with some motion lines would have helped. You don’t always have to show the action itself, but if you don’t, you need to frame it more clearly. For example, we see a shadow over Poof, or there’s a sound effect for a large clang, then we see Aiden clutching his face.

Also, between pages 2 and 3, the position of the characters completely swaps. In comics and film, there’s a thing called the 180 degree rule, which means the characters should always have the same left-right position to each other. You can swing the camera around 180 degrees - so sometimes we might see person A in the foreground, then person B - but we always stay on the same side of them. You can break it or switch up the view, but there has to be a good reason or action. Here, there doesn’t seem to be one.

But all in all really good job for your first battle! Most of what I mentioned are little things even seasoned artists can get wrong so don’t worry about it too much. Welcome to Void! :)

Bobert
Artist
122 comments
# 4   Posted: Oct 2 2022, 10:57 PM
Kinda funny how we both were going for a sad ending with our comics, Firefly. The outcomes are very similar!

Bobert: I think I would have liked this to be expanded on a bit. Page 1 I had to reread several times before I got what you were going for. Aiden mentions a recording, and I see the lil record symbol on the second panel there, but honestly we never know what they're trying to record and why, and that whole thread is immediately sidelined in panel 3 where he loses control of the sword. If we had a bit of them trying to make the video and then have Aiden's condition flare up it would have worked better, I think, and would have only added maybe an extra page. That being said, this is a cute comic and I am loving that the man coughing up blood is calling an ambulance for a plush toy. After how the last two weeks have gone for me, going for something short and simple was definitely the call to make, for sure, but I would have liked if some of that saved time could have gone into giving us just a bit more. And I DO want to see more, believe me!
Quote from: SirJellyRaptor
I totally understand wanting more and while I can't promise immediate improvement just yet, I do want to keep pushing the envelope of what my comics are like on this site.

In regards to what Aiden wanted to do that was a storytelling failure on my part was:
I was relying too much on people having checked out his character information and knowing of his trade and skill as a blacksmith and I was hoping that it could also be inferred that he wanted to flaunt the powers of this specifically crafted sword in a video recording. So that was a bad storytelling decision on my part with expecting too much while not actually explaining things.

Firefly
Artist
29 comments
# 3   Posted: Oct 2 2022, 06:08 PM
Firefly: God damnit I love this dragon! He's just too pure. The writing is solid and the visuals are clear and everything reads very easily. My one big complaint is with the presentation of the scar. Maybe it's just me, but it took me way too long to realize what the scar was. In a comic where color is used sparingly, my eye was drawn immediately to the red blood on his hand and when looking for the scar I was looking for a wound and not looking at his crown. If we could actually see the crown breaking then it would be a lot more clear, or if the gem on the crown was one of the few colored elements to help draw attention to it. For your first battle on the site, though, it's a very good showing!
Quote from: SirJellyRaptor

You are right about the scar, I made it way too subtle. Thank you for the feedback, I''ll keep what you've said in mind for future battles!

SirJellyRaptor
Artist
76 comments
# 2   Posted: Oct 2 2022, 12:31 PM
Bobert: I think I would have liked this to be expanded on a bit. Page 1 I had to reread several times before I got what you were going for. Aiden mentions a recording, and I see the lil record symbol on the second panel there, but honestly we never know what they're trying to record and why, and that whole thread is immediately sidelined in panel 3 where he loses control of the sword. If we had a bit of them trying to make the video and then have Aiden's condition flare up it would have worked better, I think, and would have only added maybe an extra page. That being said, this is a cute comic and I am loving that the man coughing up blood is calling an ambulance for a plush toy. After how the last two weeks have gone for me, going for something short and simple was definitely the call to make, for sure, but I would have liked if some of that saved time could have gone into giving us just a bit more. And I DO want to see more, believe me!

Firefly: God damnit I love this dragon! He's just too pure. The writing is solid and the visuals are clear and everything reads very easily. My one big complaint is with the presentation of the scar. Maybe it's just me, but it took me way too long to realize what the scar was. In a comic where color is used sparingly, my eye was drawn immediately to the red blood on his hand and when looking for the scar I was looking for a wound and not looking at his crown. If we could actually see the crown breaking then it would be a lot more clear, or if the gem on the crown was one of the few colored elements to help draw attention to it. For your first battle on the site, though, it's a very good showing!

Firefly
Artist
29 comments
# 1   Posted: Oct 2 2022, 11:29 AM
Bobert your comic was short, but sweet. It felt nicely paced, and I liked how Aiden and Poof interacted with each other! Especially that ending line really hit me. Good luck to you! Win or lose I'm glad I was paired with you! Aiden was a bit of a challenge to draw, but it was a good challenge! I'd be excited to battle you again in the future!

Comic Details -

 
Scar Match
Drawing Time: 2 weeks
Ended: Oct 10th, 2022
Votes Cast: 16
Page Views: 293
Winner: Firefly
 

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