Strip 1: The X
Hello and welcome to Steel Salvation, Part 2: Shadows in the Ash. We’re shaking things up right off the bat with new characters and a new artist in the form of the immensely talented mecha.red. There’s already a huge improvement in the artwork for this strip, and trust me, it only gets better from here. Now, since we’ve hired Mr. Red, our comic is no longer free (or mostly free) to run, so in conjunction with Part 2, we’ve launched a Patreon page where fans can donate monthly for as little as $1 and receive bonuses for their contributions, from concept art to work-in-progress videos to physical rewards like stickers and posters. We’ve taken our game to the next level, and if you’re willing to take your support to the next level as well, head on over to Patreon. Any amount helps, and we’ve got plenty of rewards on tap, so we hope you’ll consider joining our patrons.
Now, with that out of the way, onto the strip 1 commentary. This was a later addition to the script, as our initial slow burn was proving too slow by webcomic standards, so I decided to provide an early glimpse beyond Dy-Gar’s lonely little world, foreshadowing that it’s soon to be a lot less lonely. It took about five or six rewrites to find a point where the dialogue felt natural enough without being too confusing, too “inside.” I’m not sure if we managed it, but I think based on the dialogue, attentive readers can grasp what Captain Tannin and her crew are, and where they’re going. If you want a better look at them, we have a series of concept art on our Patreon page that dates back several years, at least in the case of Tannin’s original design.
A little side note about this strip: it was actually inked twice, first by Evan when he was briefly attempting to take over inking duties from Alex, and then by mecha.red. It may be a victim of our artistic transitional period, but I still think it cleaned up pretty nice.
- J.S. Conner
January 1st 2015