What better way to let this summer kick your ass than with heat-shimmery new music from Kin to Stars? That’s me and Jerin Falkner, with help from Kirby Krackle keyboardist Bryce Francis and audio engineer Don Gunn on drums. Tap the big image below to listen:
We recorded this at Don’s studio over a handful of days in late April. Even though KtS is semi-retired since 2013, we still have these unrecorded songs laying about and it doesn’t feel right to let ‘em sit.
Released on the solstice, because why not? Roll those windows down. Feel that sun. It’s the first day.
Things have been quiet around this website since the Mutate, Baby! release. We played another enormous Kracklefest show, ran down to Portland to play a concert at Things From Another World, then Kyle jumped on a plane to Australia to spend two weeks at Supanova. This resulted in an unexpected three-week vacation from rehearsals, which I’ve been filling with working on Neat Hobby and some other stuff.
Recently I started working on a short adventure story comic which has really been testing my abilities as Amateur Art-maker. I don’t have a timetable for it, I just work on it when I can. But I sat down last week and wrote a “book jacket” description of the world in which this story takes place, and it was fun and thrilling in the same way that creating a D&D campaign or other make-believe world can be. It makes me wish I were already better (and faster) at the art so I can coax this world into being more quickly.
Steve Hamaker did the colors for the latest Penny Arcade story arc “The Judging Wood” and made a timelapse video of his work on the final page. It’s pretty remarkable to watch.
The early steps where he’s filling areas with solid, bright colors is, I’ve learned, a process called flatting. It’s supposed to make coloring detailed objects easier (especially objects that overlap others) by making them easy to separate select with the magic wand tool in Photoshop or whatever. I used some flatting techniques in a handful of Neat Hobby strips like The Eternal Battle but for the most part my linework is too simple and I end up just dumping colors in with the paint bucket tool.
I like how there’s barely any linework to these, mostly shadows and light.
I’ve played about 20% of Alien: Isolation so far. It borrows a lot from the original Alien film and in that sense it makes for a terrific steath game. That said, the real downer is that you die a lot. Make too much noise, you die. Run, you die. Spend too long hiding in one spot and the Alien will yank you from your refuge and you die. I can’t imagine playing this with a VR rig.
Today’s a big day in Kirby Krackle land. Our new album Mutate, Baby! is out today!
Holy crap we worked hard on this, and that goes double for Kyle, who not only writes and sings all the tunes, but does it while keeping the KK Patreon Fan Club going with two extra songs per month and organizing our annual KRACKLEFEST show which coincides with Emerald City Comic Con.
You can now download and use Unreal Engine 4 for free. There’s a royalty free required if/when your game makes a certain amount of money. This is pretty huge and apparently part of a trend: the new version of Unity and the forthcoming Source 2 game engines are going to be free as well.