Saturday, December 13, 2014

Myriad Quest: Ten Thousand Worlds

Sanguine Games is fulfilling the fruits of their latest Kickstarter, "Myriad Quest."  I got my copy at Anthrocon, and wanted to share what I found between the covers.

My foremost note:  This is a black and white comic- and it's a visual feast.  It's evident enough I love color, but sometimes black and white can be mastered in such a way that it surpasses the need for chroma.  Matt Howarth's artistry accomplishes that here.

Two words for the images:  Bold and rich.  Stark shadows and silhouettes catch the eye, large pools of black contrasting with lightness, and everywhere texture.  A galaxy of texture:  Hatching, cross hatching, stippling, stroking, scaling, fading, textures they haven't even made words for.  Portraying asteroids, molten rock, swirling black holes and stellar phenomenon- combined with the sharply stylized figures, the effect is utterly distinctive.   It's retro, reminiscent of R. Crumb combined with an angular Soviet propaganda poster.  Mix it with sci-fi, and the style is the culmination of a unique artistic perspective honed over years.

The art was the primary appeal for me, as I didn't find myself growing attached to the characters.  The cold-as-steel soldier, paired with a selfish aristocrat, didn't do much to pull on my heartstrings.  But that's a personal preference, as sci-fi is typically a vehicle for exploring concepts and ideas.  Which Myriad Quest has in spades- from animated sentient molds to lost caches of exo-spatial technology to the seedy underbelly of the galactic black market.

Myriad Quest is in the setting of Sanguine's fully formed RPG, Myriad Song.  Check out the game and the comic here:  

See you later, Space cowboy.

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