Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Rizer Unleashed- a full (at the time) explanation

So yeah, here's one of the blog posts I was planning on doing since last night, to give better explanation on one project of mine for the future.

This would be a side-story project similar to the likes of Bachi Bachi and Morphworld, focusing on characters that appeared previously in the core Aozora series while having next to no connection with the title character and still set somewhere within the Aozora world.

In this case, the focus would be on the super soldier android Rizer, whose first appearance in the series' lore would be in Bachi Bachi as a rival character to Bachi. He was created as a full-on homage to the Metal Gear (Solid) character Raiden in terms of his character mold and fighting style, but he has a different characterization and is a full blown-on combat mech instead of a human later reconfigured into a cyborg. He was created in 2017, and the motivation for his creation, while going back as far as 2016, was sparked when I met Quinton Flynn, Raiden's voice actor, at EMCon that year. I then begun developing Rizer's Wiki page and got him designed by artist NRGart7, resulting in this:

Many of the design choices seen here were done to deviate Rizer further from Raiden, examples including the yellowish color scheme, the bottom jawline being changed into a shield or guard of sorts, an overall more armored up appearance, and a personal magnetic "cyber-sword". This had led to Rizer having his own unique set of tricks, such as tossing his sword forwards before using magnetics to retrieve it on the spot, though otherwise he's still fast and can perform rapid sword slices within only moments. And that's how his characterization went for a good while.

A year later, I decided to give Rizer a side story of his own to flesh him out, at the suggestion of an artist that took a liking to the character: Heoh Kim. Since I figured the story would have been a bit dull if it was just Rizer, I decided to have Kim design up a human companion for the armored robot.

After throwing around some ideas, we came to the idea of making a story that served as not only a side-story for expanding Rizer, but also a full-on semi-tribute to the Metal Gear franchise, leading to the creation of Snayro down below.

As with Rizer to Raiden, Snayro was made a homage to Solid Snake, with the typical differences in color scheme, personality, and fighting style. Snayro, in this case, sports a more uplifting and friendly overtone compared to Snake while still being on the smug side every now and then. Compared to Snake's reliance on stealth, Snayro gets down and dirty with swordplay much like Rizer, playing more defensively as he's a human loaded up with heavy armor and lots of different tools and gadgets, thus he can't get himself into as much danger and risks as Rizer can.

The project/idea would form into Rizer: Unleashed, a hack & slash stylish action game with multiple different scenarios to play through- one with each character, and a third which adds emphasis on co-operative play by having two players, either through a network, LAN connection or good old split-screen, control each of the two characters in one big conjoined plot that results in the true ending (though if one prefers playing solo, the true ending is also achievable by completing the stories of both characters).

Rizer's story contains homage stories more modern entries in the MGS series (most notably ones that otherwise focus on Raiden) while Snayro's harkens back to older entries (those that focus on Snake). Otherwise, the stories of Rizer: Unleashed would be written from scratch and more PG-13 in tone compared to the kind of story you'd expect in Metal Gear Solid. That said, the stories would still have a dash of dark and mature compared to your typical Aozora plot.

I'll probably go more in depth with this idea at a later date, but for now I think this should give you an idea of what the story would evolve into.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Morphworld- A new side story

In a previous blogpost, I mentioned one of the stories I had planned would be known simply as "MorphWorld", focused on one of the boss characters from Rock-Aozora 4 tailored into his own adventure. Of course, I'm talking about Mr. Morph, the "Master of Morphing", embarking on a quest to both save California and earn some ego points (something he gets chewed on later).

This time, he wouldn't be alone as he gets a sidekick in the form of Sideform, a teenager-like figure with a fully sculpted body in a red battle suit, blonde hair, and the same powers as Mr. Morph. Sideform would be a foil to Mr. Morph in personality, keeping him on track during the mission and knocking him back to his senses when his ego gets to out of control. He's also the captain obvious of the duo with not much of a sense of humor, giving Mr. Morph some ammunition to fire back at him and chew on his obviousness. Most of these types of scenes would be played for comedy while still tying into the story itself.

The main theme of MorphWorld is morphing and transformation, with the main heroes and villains having some way of changing or manipulating their bodies. There would be the four transformations that would be shown in Rock-Aozora 4 (Engine, Rolling Orb, Hammer Arm, and Jet Plane), alongside a dozen other transformations, both partial and full body, that Mr. Morph and Sideform can execute. Giant Fist, Sword Arm, Spring Limbs, Copter Pack, Spinning Tornado, Motorbike Body, and Tank Body are some examples used by the duo.

The other heroes and villains all have a theme to their shapeshifting abilities. The cheerful-looking but serious Candeline, for example, would be all based around candy and sweets, while the moody and mellow Rockstor is based around rocks and boulders.

The story itself would play like a typical comic superhero story but with my own twist. There's a blend of both serious and comical moments with the interactions of the two heroes, the other heroes they meet in the city, and the villains they face. I'm not certain what the plot would revolve around- perhaps a dangerous chemical gone loose, creating a gang of rouge morphers, and Mr. Morph and Sideform going off on their own will to stop the crisis, recruiting a few fellow heroic morphers they meet along the way.

Otherwise, that just about covers how the concept is shaping on so far.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Rock Aozora World IV, the Finalized Cast

After some time of conceptualization, I think I may have a full, definitive list for what the eight "boss characters" for Rock-Aozora World IV would be known as.

Here's a quick rundown with a brief description.

  • Hercules: Ultra-strong humanoid with a greratsword. (Wiki page here)
  • Chiron: Centaur with armored gauntlets with a built-in archery set. (Wiki page here)
  • Thalassa: Mermaid with the power of geysers and water typhoons.
  • Oya: Naga with pyrokinesis granted through a special piece of jewelry.
  • Gemini: Twin jester-like humans- actually one entity that splits off into two.
  • Hades: A hooded human being who fights using the powers of a spectral coat.
  • Anthea: A human girl with power over plants, flora, and wind.
  • Helios: A human that fights with a mixture of heat and solar energy.
With the exception of Oya, these characters all take their names, backstories, and abilities after figures in Greek mythology. They all dress in outfits styled after both modern trends and traditional ancient greek wear (with the balance varying for each character, and in Oya's case her dress code is much different, styled after African tribal wear).

There would be two more characters in this group, but none of them are part of the main eight: there's Arachne the drider, a friend of Oya (and a personal rival of Anthea), and Typhon, an exotic but dastardly harpy based on a phoenix with some serpretine elements to his design (instead of being full on serpentine) and a reputation for being despised by everyone. Erebos and Kelthilda from Aozora's Adventure Gaiden would have loose ties to these ten characters, but they would rarely be seen with this group, if ever (though they would still play a part in the story).

Once I get more into developing some of the currently undesigned characters I have (and getting them, well, designed), then I'll likely move onto these ten. Of course there's also the Rock-Aozora 5 cast I have to develop.

Maybe during next month I might sketch out some rough concepts of some of these on Twitter.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

One other plot idea: Aozora's Adventure Gold

Before I begin, I highly suggest reading my previous post first.

All done? Good, since this post may be a bit more understandable if you have. Even then it's still readable if you didn't. Anyways let's begin.

This was a concept I've had on my mind for some time now, which would be for an Aozora "game" unlike any of the others. It wouldn't be a video game, but instead two different forms of media involving steel balls: Pinball in the U.S. and other regions, and Pachinko in Japan. That idea is titled: Aozora's Adventure Gold.

Now what would a plot like this involve? Well, it's pretty vague at the moment detail-wise, but the basic premise would be as follows:

Sometime after the events of Aozora's Adventure Roboforce U.S.A., Las Vegas is in the mist of recovering from an encounter with mecha enthusiast Jonathan making a sudden and unwanted appearance (and Aozora rushing in with some Roboforce armor to put a stop to him before he can cause any damage), Aozora returns to Las Vegas to experience it in full for himself after being too busy to enjoy it during his first visit. And time time, he flies in with one of the more... forgotten characters in the series, Keanu, who only had a big role in Rock-Aozora as one of the eight "Masters" before disappearing for some time. Now, he's getting a big shot as a secondary lead alongside Aozora, considering Keanu would be heavily associated with adult entertainment (casinos primarily), making the setting perfect for him. Ontop of that, Aozora wears a new, fancy black outfit with yellow details and a mega-sized belt, referred to as "Gold Aozora". (I dunno what kind of visual upgrade to give Keanu, though, since he already wears all black)

There is one small thing going on behind the scenes, however. A mischievous crime lord named Sir Gold (Real name: Gorson) is planning a mass robbery on the city, dressing up in casual clothes to go undercover and investigate the buildings and casinos that draw in the highest income, sending in his four lackeys to distract security and leave them weakened and wide open to attack, all of whom are based on and/or have powers related to casino themes and tropes. Aozora and Keanu eventually catch onto what's going on in the shadows, as they start to notice suspicious-looking characters roaming the streets and entering the various buildings. Soon, they (in an order the player would choose) fight Aozora and Keanu, eventually leading to the two boys dueling Sir Gold and his golden gauntlets. Along the way, they receive assistance from a fancy lady wearing a black suit with a golden fur coat and insect-themed sunglasses named Brianna, who initially poses as one of Sir Gold's lackeys before she reveals herself as a secret agent to Aozora and Keanu and soon joins them.

As mentioned above, this concept would exist as a pinball table and a pachinko machine in their respective regions of relevance, with the former playing like a physical pinball table and the latter a typical modern day pachinko machine (complete with the loud volume and lots of flashing lights and maybe a moving part or two). The pinball version would feature an elaborate but not super complex ruleset with various goals to complete (completing various side missions and fighting the four bosses by hitting targets to inflict damage) and fighting Sir Gold in the game's main wizard mode to reap huge jackpots. The pachinko version follows the same rules of a generic pachinko machine, launching metal balls into a machine and hoping they trigger different gates targets to roll slot machines and advance the plot while also scoring more balls. Ontop of the lever used to launch the balls, there is a single action button used for accessing and conquering certain story sequences and events, successful play would reap even more balls through making selections, making fast taps, or timing presses perfectly while balls continue to be launched into the machine. If no balls are inserted into the machine for some time or the button presses end, the game's story resets and returns to an attract mode.

The pinball version would also contain a feature unique to pins, a "home" version that changes the game to replicate the feel and length of a video game, increasing the number of Balls per credit to 5 (with stackable extra balls) and adding in a continue feature, along with the ability to save games in one of three slots before launching the ball (these saves are then deleted when used). Otherwise, it plays identical to the "public" version. The pachinko version would have no such feature, since Pachinko machines as a whole are never intended to be played at home.

The members of Sir Gold's crew would include Chipalore, a woman themed after poker chips, Dandersto, a man themed after money, B-Jakky, another man themed after playing cards, and Madatai, a lady themed after wine.

And that's pretty much where the idea stands today.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Aozora's Adventure: The Plots So Far

Since the Wiki is pretty out of date (the old Wikia/Fandom one, not the ShoutWiki one which completely omits these longer-scale stories altogether for the time being), I decided to make one large comprehensive list of the stories (or well, game concepts) that the series currently has as of August 2018.

Most of them are some you may be familiar with if you ever saw the Wikia wiki, but a few of them have been altered since the last couple of years to reflect changes that I had made in the background to them. Plus, for your convince, I made the plot summaries as brief as possible. If you happen to recognize any new characters that aren't on the ShoutWiki (and there are a couple), I'll go into detail of them next time.

Arc 1
Aozora’s Adventure - Aozora notices a sudden increase in the crime rate in his hometown via local news channels, investigates, meets the A.C.E.S. and chases them across Japan to Joker’s Castle.

Aozora’s Adventure 64 - Aozora discovers a large island somewhere off the coast of Japan and arrives there via a cruise ship. It is later attacked by the Witches, and Aozora sets of to stop them.

Aozora’s Adventure RPG - Deciding to take a brake form Japan, the now 18-year-old Aozora takes a trip with Satoru to Paris… only to be swept on another adventure thanks to rookie pirate Gill.

Rock-Aozora - Joker manipulates a group of experienced fighters from behind the scenes into waging a war against each other, causing their respective stomping grounds to be overrun by monsters. Armed with the Aozora Buster, Aozora sets out to stop the monsters, only to be mistaken as a hinderance by the other fighters.

Arc 2
—Main series—
Aozora’s Adventure II - Fayato invades Japan, later revealed that he was blackmailed by Joker into doing so, leading to Aozora, now 19, and both old and new friends setting off to stop the invasion. The bosses they meet are once again the result of behind the scenes manipulation by Joker, mainly using money to bribe them or the threat of destroying their homelands.

Rock-Aozora 2 - Joker returns to once again manipulate the eight bosses from Aozora II and turn everyone against one another in the shadows, forcing Aozora to return to some familiar settings and sort out the problem.

Aozora’s Adventure Gaiden - Aozora overhears that trouble is brewing in north-eastern Africa and travels there by plane with Taku, believing Joker is there. The plane is attacked and taken out mid-flight by Erebos, the leader of the invasion, and crash-lands in the desert. While Taku tries to fix the plane (including getting the help of locals), Aozora runs off to find parts and battle Erebos and his forces. The bosses are the result of Aozora unintentionally invading their residences and Erebos turning them against Aozora.

Aozora’s Adventure World - Robo-Aozora crashes Aozora’s 20th birthday party, leading to him and eventually, the Jetters, setting off on an adventure together. Along the way, Aozora helps out a selection of civilized non-hostile monsters in their home towns, accumulating in Aozora and the Jetters building and later combining into a large mech to duel Robo-Aozora’s own giant mech.

—Side series—
Bachi Bachi - Bachi is sent on a mission to destroy an empire invading a small but varied island filled with different climates, with his companion Gunthor assisting in the battle. In the mist of it all, they encounter Rizer, a cyborg sent with a  mission of defeating Bachi.

Arc 3
—Main series—
Aozora’s Adventure III - The now 21-year-old Aozora’s new best friend, Jigoku, is captured by the Roast Gang, leading to Aozora traveling all over the world with his friends in search for him, running into the Roast Elites along the way. After fighting their leader, Vasuman, Aozora discovers Jigoku is the commander of the Roast Gang and the two fight. In the middle of the battle, they are stopped by the Roast Gang’s rival, the Frost Gang, who capture Jigoku along with the entirety of the Roast Gang’s castle. Aozora, under the Roast Gang’s guidance, stops the Frost Elites and boards the Frost Gang’s airships to defeat Aberthol, their leader- eventually revealing Joker to be behind the Frost Gang’s sudden attack. In the mist of all this, Aozora and co. are harassed by a girl named Chouko.

Rock-Aozora 3 - Jigoku returns from what everyone thought was his defeat, and stages a war against Aozora with Chouko and Hiromori by his side, and six other bosses out to get him. Aozora retaliates once more with the Aozora Buster, eventually discovering this may not go as easily as he had thought.

Aozora’s Adventure 64 2 - An overlord named Chronos and his servant Miseress comes out from nowhere with the goal of resurrecting Kurayami after her defeat years ago, prompting Aozora to chase him in an attempt to thwart his schemes. During the quest, Aozora winds up venturing through different alternate realities each corrupted by Joker, Kurayami, and finally Chronos himself, while dealing with the Eleven Weapons sent out to destroy him.

Aozora’s Adventure RPG 2 - Aozora, now 22, decides to take another vacation out to Europe, this time landing in Germany. There, he meets a young “fan” of his named Stefan, and what starts as a simple meetup turns into another adventure as monsters are once again unleashed across northeastern Europe and Russia thanks to a dark sorcerer named Leonore, forcing the rather uncomfortable Aozora and his “biggest fan” to team up.

—Side Series—
Keisha’s Quest - During the events of Aozora III, Keisha ends up in an adventure of her own through the tropics, joined by her friend Sakaki as they battle an “modern empress” and her all-ladies team of underlings.

Arc 4
—Main series—
Rock-Aozora 4 - Two years have passed and a new, futuristic city is opening on southwestern Japan and a rich girl named Tsaressa is leading the grand opening of the city. Ten lucky winners were then selected for first-class access into the city, including Aozora and Jigoku, under the condition that they enter into a ten-man fighting tournament across the nation to prove who really deserves entry, turning the eight winners except Aozora and Jigoku against one another. The two heroes settle their differences and set off with their Busters to resolve the act and uncover the secrets of the giant city. Meanwhile, Joker is eyeing up the city with the eyes of a hawk from his new castle constructed in secret.

Aozora’s Adventure Roboforce U.S.A. - A robotics expert and adventurer named Jonathan uncovers the burial grounds of seven alien robots with access to large mechs and unleashes them across the United States, causing them to run amok. To try and cover up the act, Jonathan tries to phone in and assure the situation is under his control, to the doubt and suspicion of a team known as Roboforce. One of the robots Jonathan released, Vauxen, later decides to pay a visit to Japan, not noticing Aozora on the rooftops of Japan- whom ready to spring into action when his R&Ring is interrupted. Eventually, Aozora travels to battle the other six robots across the US while armed with his own miniature mech, receiving direct guidance from the Roboforce.

—Side Series—
Rizer Unleashed - Rizer, Bachi’s newfound personal rival from years ago, is taking a brake from fighting and enjoying a nice and relaxing life in a junkyard. That is until it’s invaded by hostile junkyard mechs looking to destroy it, causing Rizer to get back into action and fight them off- only to be led into a military group and forced to do operations for them alongside a tech-savy human partner who also fights with a sword.
(Very early concepts, expect this draft to be discarded)

Arc 5
—Main Series—
Rock-Aozora 5 - After hiding in the dark for two years following her defeat, Tsaressa targets New York City as her next stomping grounds- mounting a giant spherical base onto the Empire State Building and sending a trio of malicious cops, the T-Force, to keep the city’s residents and real police force at bay. Aozora, now 23, hears the news and flies down to NYC with Jigoku and their Busters in tow, only to be suddenly joined by a western girl named Patrica who also heard the news and wanted to check out all the fuss going on. This time, the bosses are driven by the stress of seeing their hometown attacked, assuming Aozora/Jigoku/Patrica are the ones responsible.

Aozora’s Adventure Fever - With Tsaressa removed from power, New York City is at piece again, having their annual musical events where the city is turned into a bright neon music show, with Demija at the helm. She invites Aozora and his friends over to take part in and enjoy the live musical performances, eventually doing battle with the mysterious “Dark Boomboxer” Dotai and his army of musical goons and ultimately climaxing in a massive musical showdown against Joker. 

Aozora and the Gates of Illusion - A red-clad magician girl named Brenda is bringing her show across Japan, and she’s invited Aozora, Satoru, and Zik as special quests. However, a mishap backstage causes her to disappear into a strange portal, forcing Aozora and his two buddies to jump in after her. Now stuck in a fantasy world, the four must work together to defeat the various attacking forces within and return home.

Aozora G - The 24-year-old Aozora discovers a strange artifact while out on a stroll that takes him too deep into forbidden territory, resulting in him being teleported to another, far-off planet. Inside, he meets Champ, a quiet and emotionless pilot with gravity powers who was separated from his family when he was brought to the planet in the same way as Aozora, and is looking for a way back to his home planet. Aozora accompanies him, setting off on a new adventure to not only get back to his world, but also fight off the monsters inhabiting this strange planet.

—Side Series—
MorphWorld - In the tropical, superhero-filled land of California, shapeshifters Mr. Morph and his sidekick Sideform are relaxing at the beach until trouble erupts and various monsters are suddenly attacking portions of the state. Allying up with the sweet candy-themed shapeshifter Candeline and the hard rock-themed shapeshifter Rockstor, the four travel across the west coast to rid the various monsters and opposing morphers invading the country, recruiting other friendly shapeshifters to help in the battle.

The Eleven Weapons - The Eleven Weapons have been out of commission for quite some time, spending years together in a large, almost run down mechanical castle. Wanting to find something to do, Sawn ventures outside his usual stomping grounds to go keep himself occupied and beat up on some junk, discovering when he returns that his “home” was nearly destroyed by a sudden attack on the fortress by mysterious machines with advanced life forces, only stopped by the remaining 10 weapons forced into action for the first time in years. Excalo, the leader, declares that their time of lounging around is finally over, and the eleven set of on various missions to rid the mysterious machines fro existence and reconstruct their castle. 

Arc 6
—Main Series—
Rock-Aozora 6 - An extraterrestrial meteorite crashes into a tropical island, sending the world into a fury as knowledge and news reports of the mysterious meteor catches the eyes of Aozora, Jigoku, Patrica, and the galactic explorer from outer space whom calls himself Deyuaru. They, along with the eight bosses, race across the globe to reach the island and investigate the meteor at different times of the day, causing them to wonder what the meteorite could possibly contain. Joker, in his newest castle, uses this to his advantage, once again putting his blackmailing and corruption skills to use and making the eight bosses obsess over the meteorite to the point where they actively fight over ownership of it, inviting the four heroes to go on a world tour to stop them form causing potential further harm to themselves and the lands they come from, meeting some… new faces along the way.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

New header/logo

After eight years of activity, this seldom-used blog finally has a new logo to replace that boring old one that I've been using since the blog was made. Since it's so big, I attached the full size version below for your viewing pleasure.

I honestly should be using this blog more often to share general character ideas and other concepts for those few that have interest in the stuff I dump out of my mind without knowing what I do with them. Who knows, it may make me more willing to make art and dive back into traditional if there's even the smallest amount of feedback.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

The Aozora's Adventure Character Renovation Project list

Oh boy, a list.

If you saw my previous blog post, you probably know by now that I plan to have a couple of my OC's redone at some point. Below is a detailed list on what characters that are or may be part of this project.
  • Masayoshi: I originally created him based on my favorite Scott Pilgrim character, Matthew Patel. And thus, there are a few spots on his design that look as if they were directly copied from Matthew, and so I decided that some aspects could be changed to greatly loosen up the connection. Maybe a different, more clean and trimmed hair style, new pants, and perhaps a new (or different colored) shirt design.
  • Chinatsu: Chinatsu will go to using a new design provided by LinkerLuis, with some tweaks.
  • Girou: Unsure really if his appearance would need a direct change, as he doesn't have much in common with the two lead males of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann. Maybe the bandages around his lower chest area could be changed somehow...?
  • Sharkane: While he's not too similar to Sol-Badguy (especially after Sol got redesigned for Xrd), maybe something could happen to his appearance to diverse him up a bit, especially after a particular artwork I received years ago from oroooro on Twitter showed him with a long, red scarf.
  • Nirave: His outfit could be modified to give off less of a DIO feel while maintaining some of that Jojo's Bizarre Adventure feel.
  • Erebos: While the current design is decent, I feel as if it could be overhauled to be more detailed and muscular and represent a far more powerful character while not straying too much towards being an Idaten (from Cho Aniki) copycat.
  • Tracker: Another one I'm not entirely sure needs some kind of revamp or design change, in this case to diverse him from Beat of Jet Set Radio fame or Terry from the F-Zero series.
  • Sawn: I'd like to do some kind of mass overhaul to Sawn to give him an overall more menacing vibe along with finally getting a design made for his "weapon" (his right arm in the form of a massive chainsaw). It'd help with giving good examples of how the other Eleven Weapons would look as well when the time comes to developing them (since they're not really meant to be heroic).
  • Kunz: While I'm satisfied with the current design, it could be redesigned to be a bit more erm.., menacing (but not super-menacing) and bulky. Not to the extent of one of his main inspirations in the form of Big Band from Skullgirls, but definitely larger and sharper in appearance. His weapons would also be redrawn to look less rounded/curved and more like the original sketch provided by Ivore Whitefang.
  • Zacat: Another good design I'm fine with using in it's current state, however the Vash the Stampede elements of his design may be... too obvious? His appearance was also meant to contain some kind of minor nod to Burn Griffiths (from Psychic Force) but it ended up being dropped for the most part in this current design. Not a major candidate for redesigning, but possibly something to consider.
  • Leonore: Again, a pretty solid design, but I'm sure there's something that could be done to make him a less obvious Ardyn clone (including maybe different powers that don't involve dark goopy substances while not being just the obvious "shadow" powers).
  • Blasthor: I dunno why but I'm thinking maybe Blasthor could be a candidate to receive a new design, one that makes him slightly less of a Junkrat/Bakugo clone while still keeping the explosive motif, intense (and insane) personality, and a few elements of his current design. (he also needs a new bomb generator pack attached to the backs of his twin launchers via giant tubes of sorts)
  • Mugi: Mugi is going on this list as he currently looks too much like an Inkling (and his outfit doesn't really suit him as it's a direct clone of Neku Sakuraba's outfit). Something with the same colors but a different, maybe more techy outfit and and redesigned eyes would be a step in the right direction (while also including some example arm transformations)
  • Demija: The design I received needs some visual tweaks to make it more unique compared to DJ Sona, such as her hair. Might also get a name change and some extra inspiration to take design cues from to mix it up even further.
  • Codra: His appearance (as much as I like it so far) needs much more detail, including a bigger afro and a proper weapon that looks more like a gauntlet.
Furthermore, disregarding Arc 5 characters, the following characters need their designs conceptualized and/or completed as well, with some being higher-priority than others:
(for the sake of interest, I put what series/game the character's design would take inspiration from mostly in parentheses, if they have any)

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Mass Character Revamping Project due sometime in the future

Lately I've been getting feedback regarding some of the designs in the series, and to make a long story short there has been some criticism regarding some of the characters being too close to their inspirations visually.

So I decided that at some point once the Aozora's Adventure series starts becoming something truly serious and not just for fun, a number of my creations will be brought back into the drawing or planning board to make them more diverse from their inspirations while still keeping some of the spirit of the character(s) they take inspiration from. The redesigns will likely not happen until I'm able to make games/comics starring the characters (and thus, they will be redesigned when their debut happens), but if it happens sooner then later, then so be it.

This project will be geared towards characters that debuted in Arc 2 and later, with specific targets including the likes of Masayoshi, Sharkane, Nirave, Rodrigo, (maybe) Chouko, Tracker, Mugi, Vauxen, and others that for one reason or another look very close to what they were inspired from. The redesigns will range from small alterations to full-on overhauls. In related terms, all future characters that I inquire for will be built with this rule in mind to make sure they don't eventually have to be edited as well. Plus, any commissioned arts that I receive from this point on featuring these existing characters will include some kind of retool or redesign, whichever ones happen to exist by the time Aozora's Adventure goes serious will replace or be assimilated into the existing designs. Once I get a finalized design, the ShoutWiki (not the Wikia), along with any "appearance" sections will be updated accordingly.

At the moment there is no grand list for what characters will get minor edits, major edits, or a full-on overhaul besides the examples listed above, though do expect a grand majority of the characters with established designs to receive some kind of visual change. Characters with weapons will end up keeping those weapons. To prevent possible situations like these from appearing, when the project launches the "Trivia" sections from each page will be axed completely.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Shin Aozora's Adventure: The Reboot that Never Happened

Over the past few years, there's a number of content in my series that winds up getting scrapped one reason or another, either due to loss of interest or after some extra thinking, realizing the plot wouldn't have worked so well in the first place.

One of these is Shin Aozora's Adventure, an attempt at another sub-series in the Aozora universe much in the style of Oriental and Darkness. The concept for such was triggered on January 12th of last year, right off the excitement and thrill of the big Nintendo Switch announcement that happened on that day and the reveal of ARMS, which I understandably was excited for. It even got me out of retirement for a brief moment so I could draw this:

This here would've been one of Aozora's many forms that he could transform into and fight with, along with a wide number of other powers. This particular form would've debuted in Shin Aozora, but my loss in furthering Shin Aozora's development along with a desire of avoiding "cameo powers" due to their complexity, minus Guts Aozora (which is based of Gear 4th from One Piece), whom I'm going to tweak to be as far removed from it's inspiration as much as possible. (also a hint, Guts Aozora may be who I draw next as I still have some progress of him form last year)

Without further ado, Shin Aozora. The plot would've been a cross between the infamous Super Mario Bros. film and the less controversial but still average Sonic the Hedgehog OVA. Unlike the original Aozora, the plot of Shin Aozora would be far more advanced and detailed, giving a reason as to how Aozora and co can use the various Power-Ups to transform (along with an origin story on Power Ups themselves). Most of it revolves around the existence of "Colored Energy" which would've been inspired by the concept of Lums in Rayman's lore (as described in Rayman 2/Revolution/DS/3D). The colors of energy directly mimicked what they did in the Rayman series: Red represents health, Blue is life, Silver grants powers. In the case of Shin Aozora, Silver grants the user the ability to use the Power Ups to begin with.

The world would be divided into three layers. "The Aboveworld", aka "The Land of the Sky", the "Surface World", and "The Underworld". If you've seen either the Mario and/or Sonic movies, you should have an idea on how each of the three layers would look on a grander scale.

As for Powerups, their described lore is that they were the reincarnated souls of heroes who were sealed into glass capsules by the world's gods after proving their worth to the world over the years. Because of this, Shin Aozora would have some religious themes strewn about, with the gods watching over the heroes and sealing their powers within the glass orbs when they finally pass. They later split and scatter the orbs across the globe in the hopes that somebody with Silver Energy would be able to use them for greater good.

In this universe, the major focus would be on Aozora, Satoru, Zik, and a fourth female character known as Brenda a badass no-nonsense fighter that mostly serves as a foil to the trio of boys. They all live on the Aboveworld, in a large beachside house made out of various abandoned transportation vehicles, much like Sonic's house in the Sonic OVA. The four, for unknown reasons, found and absorbed Silver Energy during their youth, giving them the ability to use Power-Ups. Due to the rarity of a Silver Energy user and Silver Energy (along with Silver Energy users) being highly sought after for potential wealth, strength, and fame, the four main characters were forced to stay in the Aboveworld where the amount of risk into getting captured or killed would be far lower than on the Surface or Underworld. As with the Sonic OVA, the Aboveworld is run by it's own president with a daughter, though unlike the Sonic OVA, both characters would actively play huge roles in the story and even would have moments of badassery themselves.

As for the other two worlds, The Surface World is much the same as regular Aozora's universe, with themes of urban science and urban fantasy mixing together. The Underworld, on the other hand, is a much different story. It's only location is a city that mimics Dinohattan from the Super Mario Bros. film, filled with humans that evolved from reptilian creatures instead of primates. Unlike the Mario movie, the residents are more reptilian like, with some residents having different degrees of human to reptilian. The more reptilian residents have different eyes, abnormal skin colors and ears, spikes on their skin, sharp teeth, and extendable tongues. This city would be run by a corrupt president, who would become one of the main antagonists of the story.

The true villain of the story would be a superpowered mastermind who seeks out a lone piece of Silver Energy to power himself up even further and turn himself into a super being, and he, in secret, targets Aozora and his crew as they run off to stop him on behalf of the Aboveworld's president.

With that said, there's not much else I can say about this project. I simply lost interest and the project didn't seem to go anywhere, along with how much it copied from other sources. Additionally, all the work that was (and is) still left to do in vanilla Aozora also strayed me away from Shin Aozora. Will Shin Aozora ever be reincarnated? Maybe, but don't hold your breath and count on it.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Rock Aozora World 4 character ideas.

Oh yeah, you saw this coming.
While I still don't plan on officially starting on full development of Arc 5's roster just yet, I figured I'd spare some details on concepts for a proposed finale to a hypothetical handheld Rock Aozora lineup of stories (similar to what Mega Man V/Rockman World 5 was to the Mega Man Game Boy games).

This would be Rock Aozora World 4, in which Aozora travels to southeastern Europe to fight eight "Masters" named after and loosely based on various greek and roman legends and mythologies. So far, only four of them have been decided on.

Since these characters have their backstories traced back to being living legends of sorts (and some perhaps being several hundred years old), I would go for a more mythological and magical approach to these characters than the high-tech urban fantasy one that you see most of my characters in. Sufficient to say that these particular characters won't lift all the characteristics of the myth, and they'd receive my typical spin on character creation.

With that said, here's the four I currently have:

  • Chiron: A dorky blonde bishonen centaur with moderately well-toned muscles. He wears a gauntlet of sorts with a special archer's bow mounted on it and has a supply of light-infused arrows which leave a consistent beam of semi-solid light in it's path when fired. The arrows travel really fast and can bounce off walls, and the beam of light left by the arrows remains for about a second, possibly doing more damage. Chiron also wears specially-crafted horses' shoes which are filled with magic, allowing Chiron to make very high leaps into mid air and perform powerful kicks. Inspiration-wise I see him with having a light touch of Sin Kiske from Guilty Gear, but a bit older-looking and not as childlike or prone to silly animations/expressions.
  • Hercules: A big, well-developed muscular powerhouse with long and messy (but perhaps not super long) red-brown hair standing at an impressive eight feet tall, wearing primitive but still modern and decently detailed clothing including a scarf of sorts, metal gauntlets and boots, a custom-made loincloth that covers both the front and back (though he also wears bulky pants of sorts underneath which, along with the loincloths, are attached onto a large belt worn around the waist). Hercules at his heart is a brawler who enjoys every aspect of a good fight and proudly displays the scars he received form years and years of combat. Because of his status as a legend, he is quite popular with the people that inhabit his homeland, women especially. His claim to fame is being the wielder of one of the world's biggest swords; a steampunk-themed engine blade with cogs and gears across the base that allow Hercules to lift it and slam it down. I initially based Hercules off of the Titan boss/summon from the game Granblue Fantasy, though not as big and with less of an over-exagerated body/hair/scarf/sword size. I may want to try some other visual tweaks to make him more unique as well.
-WIP, more to come later-