Writer:  Joey Groah

Artist:  Gannon Beck

Colorist:  Gannon Beck

Letterer:  Gannon Beck

Page 8 Update:

Digger considers his options, and piles all the refugees into the escape saucer.  The End.

Page 7 Update:

Digger disarms Colonel Zeed thanks to the intervention of an alien refugee kid.  The scientist informs Digger that the only way he’s leaving is if the Space Corps takes all of them.

Page 6 UPDATE:

Digger enters the train car to find it’s full of refugees AND Colonel Zeed holding the scientist hostage.  Time for some villainous screeds.

 

Page 5 UPDATE:

Meanwhile, Digger has found train car 5.  He’s looking to rescue an important scientist, but finds a guard instead.  We could use some exclamations from the startled guard.

Page 4 UPDATE:

In which PFC Sheglh’eth straight up eats a dude and steals his hovercraft.  What does an embryonic Lovecraftian demigod say when he’s carjacking?

 

Page 3 UPDATE:

Not much dialogue needed here, but how about some sounds effects?  Possibly some monologue from Digger?

01230 UPDATE:  Here’s page 2!

Here’s what’s going on.

Panel 1:  LCPL Cazarez is berating PFC Sheglh’eth for forgetting the explosives.

Panel 2:  Sheg offers a lame excuse.

Panel 3:  The package they’re there to retrieve is on car 5, and they’re going to miss it!

Panel 4:  The train blows by.  Mission ruined.

Panel 5:  LCPL Digger is missing!

Send us your dialogue suggestions!  Make with the funny!

 

0900 UPDATE:  Page 1 is up! Check it out and join Gannon and Joey as Comics-On-A-Train kicks off. They’re waiting for your input so go ahead and start posting your ideas, suggestions, hooks, dialogue, bad jokes and one-liners, and they’ll figure out how to squash it all into the story. Be sure to stay tuned as the pages will be posted as they’re done.

First up, we need a few questions answered!  What’s on the train?  Why doesn’t PFC Sheglhe’th have the explosives?  What’s the name of this planet, and who lives here?  Also, most importantly, what will happen if they fail their mission?

 

 

Well, hey!  Big day tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012 9:00AM EST marks the commencement of our Grand Experiment.

During the train ride to New York Comic Con, we’re making a comic on a train.  Involving a train.  And space marines.

So here’s how this is going to work.

We’re going to post the setting, characters, and scenario.  You (our dear readers) will help provide the rest.  We’ll accept your story ideas, suggestions, hooks, dialogue, bad jokes, and one-liners, and figure out how to squash it all into the story.  We’re shooting for a short story between 5-8 pages.  As we write the story in real-time, Gannon will be drawing like a wildman, and we’ll post the pages as they’re finished.  Crowdsourcing, it’s a thing that people on the Internet talk about all the time!  And you’re on the Internet, so it should be right up your alley!

So how do you participate?  Visit our Facebook page, or look under the #spacecorps tag in Twitter between 9am EST and 3pm EST.  Post your ideas there, and we’ll post our artwork.  Bonus points to anyone who can work in references to the Wabash Cannonball, Strangers on a Train, or the Little Engine that Could.  Forget Thomas the Tank Engine.  Seriously, forget that guy.

Is all that clear?  Of course it isn’t!  But we’re going to try it anyway.

THE SETTING:

A gas giant in  a far flung galaxy, on an elevated high-speed rail system that rings the entire planet.

THE CHARACTERS:

 

Name: Black
Rank: Cpl
Race: Felnish
Age: 16 years

Backstory: The Felnish are a slug-like humanoid race. Most of the time they’re lethargic and laid back, but when they need to move, they can move. When the Felnish were attacked for their genetic capabilities, it took them a long time to respond. Most of their race was wiped out. Luckily they reproduce asexually.
Appearance: Humanoid. Black’s skin is normally a deep, featureless black which absorbs light and heat. He can change skin color to match surroundings, and he doesn’t show up on thermal readings. When he’s completely still, he’s nigh-invisible.
Capabilities: Sniper. His skin is his sensory organ which grants him 360-degree vision. He’s slightly adhesive, like a slug. He feeds on ambient radiation and water to survive.
Personality: Laid-back, almost too laid-back. Black is never in a rush to get anywhere. This is an advantageous attribute once he’s taken a sniping position. He can wait forever.
Quote: “That thing you see in the dark, when your mind start playing tricks on you? That’s me.”

Name: Sheghle’th
Rank: PFC
Race: The Ancients
Age: 6520 years

Backstory: Sheghle’th (“Sheg” for short) is an embryonic Elder God. His race only has a population of 6, but the Winnowers killed one using a large portion of their fleet. The rest of the Ancients, in an act of solidarity, “volunteered” one of their own to join the Corps, the youngest. The Ancients consider themselves gods cause they’re really old and at the top of the food chain. They do have worshippers.
Capabilities: He can pack multiple weapons and has unlimited regeneration. He is effectively immortal (cannot die of age), but he can be killed. He is immune to radiation. He does not require air. Sheg is in a state of constant voracious hunger, which contributes to his foul mood. He will eventually grow enormous in thousands of years.
Personality: Sheg resents the fact that he’s been forced to serve with mere mortals to protect his family members. He’s a terrible Space Marine. The attributes which make him a fearsome god make him reluctant follow orders willingly: prideful, vengeful, and disobedient. He’ll always be stuck on the bottom rung, cleaning bathrooms and peeling potatoes until the war is over.

Quote: “Chow’s ready. Also, in 5000 years I will devour you all.”

Name: Santiago Cazarez
Rank: Lance Corporal
Race: Human
Age: 21 years

Backstory: Santiago was born and raised in El Paso, Texas. He comes from a Marine family: His father served in the Gulf War and Bosnia, and his younger brother served and was killed in Afghanistan. Cazarez had served a year and a half in Afghanistan when the Winnowers invaded. After the Winnower Invasion was repelled, he was offered the opportunity to transfer into the Space Corps, which he readily accepted.
Capabilities: Cazarez is a rifleman, and an effective one. He has extremely good instincts, especially when it comes to sensing ambushes or finding roadside bombs. Comfortable in harsh environments.
Personality: Cazarez is highly motivated, almost insufferably so. He’s not happy unless he’s in miserable circumstances, and prides himself on his capacity for tolerating pain. Has very little patience for other Space Marines who don’t measure up to his extreme standards of performance.

Quote: “If you got time to play video games, you got time to do push-ups.”

Name: Digger
Rank: Lance Corporal
Race: Mole People
Age: 43 years

Backstory: Digger was raised on a large planet. His people lived underground in the extremely high-pressure environment of his planet, until the Winnowers began terraforming his planet, converting it into a fuel depot for their ships. His people didn’t notice what was going on until their atmosphere started becoming unbreathable. The Alliance intervened to destroy the terraforming stations.
Capabilities: Heavy weapons guy. Very poor vision, wears cybergoggles to enhance his sight. His skeleton is extremely dense to support his weight. His team basically points him in the right direction and has him dump lead where they need it. He also has strong burrowing claws, strong enough to dig through dense soil.
Personality: Digger is a scholar and a poet. He’s somewhat renowned on his planet for his writings. He doesn’t speak often, but when he does, it is eloquent and incisive.

Quote: “May the gods have mercy on whatever was in that bunker, because I just filled it with hellfire.”

Name:  Zeed
Rank:  Colonel
Race:  Winnower
Age:  34
Backstory:  The Winnowers are a race of ruthless eugenicists, who have eradicated countless species across the galaxy.  Every time the Winnowers conquer a race, they include the strongest genetic traits of the victims into their own genetic codes.  Winnowers are a highly adaptive species, with the ability to add or remove genes from their code.  Soldiers are adapted for heavy physical duty, while officers are bred for intelligence and political ability.  The Winnower attack on Earth was short and devastating, but they were quickly driven off by the intervention of the Space Corps.
Personality:  Colonel Zeed is a highly successful Winnower officer, who was instrumental in the extinction of several races.  He is preternaturally patient, but merciless.  He spends his limited free time browsing over alien genome maps, picking out possible new traits to incorporate into himself or his troops.
Quote:  “I can tell you come from good breeding stock.  You have lovely genes.  I’ll take them.”

Here’s an enlisted Winnower.  Bred for combat.
THE SCENARIO:
Black’s fire team has to blow up the train.  That’s it.  It’s not Shakespeare.

 

STANDARD DISCLAIMER:

We have no idea if this is going to work, but we’re going to have fun trying.  Here comes some legalese.  We want you to play with this story.  If you participate, Space Corps Comic has your permission to use your ideas.  We want everyone to participate, but all characters, settings, stories, etc. remain copyright Space Corps Comic (c) 2012.

Gah.  Legal stuff.  I feel like I need to take a shower.

See you tomorrow.

- Bryan