Industry Elites Added As Judges for Webcomic Contest

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Does the webcomic specifically need to be about games? Or could it be about something else entirely?

Does four 'pieces of art' mean four comics, or is it sort of like concept art / random sketches.

doggkun:
Hi, i have a Question about the size of the Webcomic. when it says "width must be no larger than 650 pixels height must be no larger than 1280 pixels" Is that referring to the 4 submissions separately or as a whole and they should add up to that size?

thanks in advance

Each page, whether broken down into frames or not, will be 650x1280. Meaning, you will be submitting 4 650x1280 "pieces of art". How you decide to divide the 650x1280 is up to you.

Beeli:
Okay! I have a couple questions. I've read through what's on here, and some questions already asked have come close to mine, but I want to make sure the particulars of my questions are answered. ^^

"You must submit one (1) single frame of logo or brand and four (4) pieces of art, totaling 5 submissions"

Okay, so I was wondering exactly what this means. Does it mean you submit four comic examples, or a comic that has four cels, but each separately, or four one cel comic examples? A little clarification on this would be super helpful. :)

Each page, whether broken down into frames or not, will be 650x1280. Meaning, you will be submitting 4 650x1280 "pieces of art". How you decide to divide the 650x1280 is up to you.

Also, if I wanted to do a comic that occasionally took place in a video game world and had certain game character cameos, like Link for instance, would that be considered copyright infringement?

Regarding video game plot and plot spoilers, I have a couple scenarios for example: Say you had an original character who is in a Final Fantasy game, and they know they have to get from point A to point B (NO spoilers or significant plot revealed, the person is just told to go from this town to the next, and maybe kill this or that along the way,) would that be CR infringement?

Or if an original character is solving some sort of puzzle in a game--would they be able to solve the original puzzle, or would that be a spoiler? Would you have to make up your own puzzle?

Can original characters interact with in-game characters? If so, would the in-game characters need to stay true to their original personality, or could they be a reflection of the original character's interpretation of the in-game character?

Also, can original characters mention certain in-game places? For example, if a character says something like, "Oh, just head over to Nook's Cranny (Animal Crossing)..." is that allowed?

I'm just trying to figure out exactly what's considered a copyright infringement. ^^ I certainly don't want to cross any boundaries!

Thank you for your time. :D

Here is the short answer to your question, without getting into anything too legal. If it is a parody or satire of a game and everything it encompasses, it's probably okay. Sending Link out on another adventure will send Nintendo your way in a hurry but if you are using a likeness of Link and creating a funny adventure, there is a possibility it may be okay.

To stay with Zelda, if you are poking fun at something in Zelda and using a likeness of Link, again probably as well.

Taking specific items out of any game or storyline and generating more content based on that becomes fan fiction, which will most certainly bring Nintendo's lawyers sending over a cease and desist order.

jimothy_:
Because there's been far too much questioning of it, and because I'm sure Spinwhiz has other things to do, a note on copyright:

"copyright infringement occurs when a copyrighted work is reproduced, distributed, performed, publicly displayed, or made into a derivative work without the permission of the copyright owner." (emphasis mine) -U.S. Copyright Office

Which means if you are taking someone's plot, setting or characters and attempting to do anything serious with them--don't. Fair use gives a small amount of leeway for excerpts, but the only way that would be relevant in a webcomic is as parody, or if the webcomic is making a critical review on the subject.

And it really doesn't take much to check up on questions you might have. The official page of the U.S. Copyright Office is pretty darn accessible, and there's a wiki if you want to avoid primary sources.

Awesome...and thank you!

Billska:
Does the webcomic specifically need to be about games? Or could it be about something else entirely?

From the Contest Page: "Is the subject matter interesting to readers of The Escapist? The Escapist aims to capture and celebrate the contemporary video gaming lifestyle and the diverse global video game culture, so please plan accordingly."

If you can make it interesting to readers of The Escapist, you can do whatever you like.

Nivag:
Does four 'pieces of art' mean four comics, or is it sort of like concept art / random sketches.

We want 4 complete strips that are ready to be published. Each page, whether broken down into frames or not, will be 650x1280. Meaning, you will be submitting 4 650x1280 "pieces of art". How you decide to divide the 650x1280 is up to you.

Spinwhiz:

Each page, whether broken down into frames or not, will be 650x1280. Meaning, you will be submitting 4 650x1280 "pieces of art". How you decide to divide the 650x1280 is up to you.

Here is the short answer to your question, without getting into anything too legal. If it is a parody or satire of a game and everything it encompasses, it's probably okay. Sending Link out on another adventure will send Nintendo your way in a hurry but if you are using a likeness of Link and creating a funny adventure, there is a possibility it may be okay.

To stay with Zelda, if you are poking fun at something in Zelda and using a likeness of Link, again probably as well.

Taking specific items out of any game or storyline and generating more content based on that becomes fan fiction, which will most certainly bring Nintendo's lawyers sending over a cease and desist order.

Thank you, my questions have been answered! ^^ I wanted to do a comedy/parody, so that seems to give me a little room for snippets of things here and there.

Hello, I'm an artist looking for a writer. ^_^

I have no problems doing either dramatic or comedic work and I can turn out pieces fairly quickly.

Some of my works:

http://blaze45.deviantart.com/art/Initiative-145571670
http://blaze45.deviantart.com/art/Happiness-Is-A-Warm-Gun-152982184
http://blaze45.deviantart.com/art/A-Cat-is-Fine-Too-152880238
http://blaze45.deviantart.com/art/Off-Duty-152879942

Old Comic Works: (Please read right to left. Sorry >_<; )

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v448/Kiro/page214jpgcopy.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v448/Kiro/page215jpgcopy.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v448/Kiro/page216jpgcopy.jpg

If you're interested, please feel free to send me a note! d_(^_^)_b

Awww man, no nudity? What if I just pop a pair of tits in there at random? Everybody loves tits, right? That's not sex and it's not even nudity! You need a person to have nudity. This? This is just a pair of rockin' tits being awesome in one of the panels. Or all the panels. Hell, what if I make all the characters different sizes of tits? It'd be like Game Dogs except with tits! You guys like Game Dogs, right?

Shamus is the man.

This was partially covered by the WoW and Zelda questions, but can we use characterizations/representations of real life individuals? More specifically, those that do features on The Escapist such as Shamus or Yahtzee Croshaw, assuming that:

1.) It is done in good taste (obviously, and I realize this would be very subjective)
2.) It does not constitute libel towards said individual(s)
3.) No infringement of said Escapist feature(s) occurs

I ask this without knowing the legal relationship that the Escapist has with it's content writers/contributors.

Also,

Spinwhiz:

Names of games in the conversation are okay, just like the way Shamus does it in Stolen Pixels or the guys from Penny Arcade.

Spinwhiz:

This is a very grey area. While you are allowed to use images from the Warcraft Universe, doing anything to promote a brand (say a certain soda) or putting them in unflattering situations that could hurt the brand, would get the comic closed before you could blink. So, if you are just using the images or even your characters from the game but your content is not affect the brand, you should be okay. There are a lot of webcomics out there that use parody from games, so the only thing we can do is ask you to try and we'll see what happens.

Penny Arcade has been cited quite a bit in this thread. Many of the PA comics involve Gabe's renditions of game characters and parodies of situations involving their games (my favorite of all time is when Nova tries to take shelter from the Nihilistic Software/Blizzard fiasco in Tycho and Gabe's apartment, resulting in Tycho nearly being garroted).

Would it be safe to assume that humor and parody in the same flavor as Penny Arcade would be acceptable for this competition?

Thank you for your time, and I'm glad to see so many good discussions, good questions and good answers being thrown around!

now i do have ideas, and i do concider myself a good artist, but not a good computer artist. would it be frowned uppon if i hand draw my comics, scan them, then upload them?

edit: would they even be accepted at all?

celederer:
now i do have ideas, and i do concider myself a good artist, but not a good computer artist. would it be frowned uppon if i hand draw my comics, scan them, then upload them?

edit: would they even be accepted at all?

There are some extremely, EXTREMELY popular webcomics that are drawn pencil on paper, for example Dominic Deegan and *coughcoughMegatokyocough*.

There are many types of webcomics, so feel free to write and illustrate anything your heart desires. From stick figure drawings to illustrated comics Marvel or DC Comics, there are millions of possibilities and can range from political satire to full episodes.

Keep in mind that a scanned-in, hand drawn image is still a digital image, even if the original media was analog. So, it would still be a webcomic, and I'd say to send that sucker in.

how anal are you about the 650x1280? Our comic is currently 500x1280. I would have assumed long as it wasn't over, but that whole "We would like to see a full width comic to maintain this quality" made me hesitant.

I understand that a width of 650px is mandatory because that's the size of the page, but I guess height is not that important.

I am interested in entering for a bit of a laugh - is there any artist out there who is willing to collaborate with a writer; I'm a scientist by trade with a pretty acerbic sense of humour. My ideas have no story line so each comic would be stand alone.

Also I have no interest in being employed to write web-comics, so if I somehow was part of the winning team I would decline the contract...(bet your all jumping to work with me now!)

If there are any of you artists who are interested gimme a shout!

aeroz:
how anal are you about the 650x1280? Our comic is currently 500x1280. I would have assumed long as it wasn't over, but that whole "We would like to see a full width comic to maintain this quality" made me hesitant.

You could always just have some extra white space on the outside to make up for the width.

What about using some box art in the comic? For comedic effect I would like to use the boxart of the upcoming game "Naughty Bear", but if I'm not allowed I'll gladly draw up some faux box art with a similar name in order to get the point across.

megalomania:
I am interested in entering for a bit of a laugh - is there any artist out there who is willing to collaborate with a writer; I'm a scientist by trade with a pretty acerbic sense of humour. My ideas have no story line so each comic would be stand alone.

Also I have no interest in being employed to write web-comics, so if I somehow was part of the winning team I would decline the contract...(bet your all jumping to work with me now!)

If there are any of you artists who are interested gimme a shout!

If you don't want to make webcomics then you probably shouldn't enter a webcomic contest. Why would you want to waste the time of the escapist employees and possibly screw over both the other contestants and the poor artist you got to draw for you?

Hey, I'm also interested in this contest, but I have one question. When you say no copyrighted material, I know I can't take someone else's work that's already online and submit it, obviously. However, does it also mean that I won't be able to submit a comic making a reference to something that has a copyright? Like if I were to metion zelda in it, or draw a spoof of an existing character, is that a no-no?

Also, the one-fram logo that's not actually a comic, is it basically just like a banner, like you would see on penny-arcade or other sites? Please let me know, thanks.

"Webcomics submitted to The Escapist Webcomic Contest must be the exclusive property of the contest entrant and have never before appeared or been broadcast in any form anywhere"

Can I take this to mean that we cannot use comics that we have published on the web for this? If so, does this apply for new instalments to our established series and reoccuring characters?

Armored Prayer:
Damn I would enter but:

1: I lack a scanner and proper software.

2: I can draw but I cant write.

Still, good luck to all the participants.

I had this issue before with the scanner. Way I got around it? Took a picture of drawing with digital camera and uploaded into laptop. On software I guess you mean Photoshop as it is what I use. Can get student versions (assuming your a student) for much cheaper (around 200-250 for latest version if memory serves).

Spinwhiz:
If it is a parody or satire of a game and everything it encompasses, it's probably okay. Sending Link out on another adventure will send Nintendo your way in a hurry but if you are using a likeness of Link and creating a funny adventure, there is a possibility it may be okay.

To stay with Zelda, if you are poking fun at something in Zelda and using a likeness of Link, again probably as well.

Taking specific items out of any game or storyline and generating more content based on that becomes fan fiction, which will most certainly bring Nintendo's lawyers sending over a cease and desist order.

What about repurposing existing iconic characters and giving them new plots in different worlds, la There Will Be Brawl?

Okay, there's just too much thread to go through, so my apologies if this has already been answered. I have a web comic I've been doing for a number of years now. My collaborator and I would love to have our comic hosted on the escapist. Now in the rules it says:

Webcomics submitted to The Escapist Webcomic Contest must be the exclusive property of the contest entrant and have never before appeared or been broadcast in any form anywhere.

Does this mean that the comic as a whole can not have appeared anywhere before, or merely the specific comic strips I would create as entries to this contest? I would be perfectly happy to make 4 comics specifically for the contest that wouldn't appear on my comic's site. Would that meet the criteria set forth in the contest rules? Or will I have to create a brand new idea for a comic, with a different title and new characters?

SergeXIII:
"Webcomics submitted to The Escapist Webcomic Contest must be the exclusive property of the contest entrant and have never before appeared or been broadcast in any form anywhere"

Can I take this to mean that we cannot use comics that we have published on the web for this? If so, does this apply for new instalments to our established series and reoccuring characters?

Pagz:
Okay, there's just too much thread to go through, so my apologies if this has already been answered. I have a web comic I've been doing for a number of years now. My collaborator and I would love to have our comic hosted on the escapist. Now in the rules it says:

Webcomics submitted to The Escapist Webcomic Contest must be the exclusive property of the contest entrant and have never before appeared or been broadcast in any form anywhere.

Does this mean that the comic as a whole can not have appeared anywhere before, or merely the specific comic strips I would create as entries to this contest? I would be perfectly happy to make 4 comics specifically for the contest that wouldn't appear on my comic's site. Would that meet the criteria set forth in the contest rules? Or will I have to create a brand new idea for a comic, with a different title and new characters?

From earlier in the thread:

Spinwhiz:

If you have posted the work you are submitting ANYWHERE, you cannot enter it into this contest[...] we want your NEW ideas, not stuff you have been working on. We want to show the world for the first time, right here on The Escapist and let everyone we know to come check it out.

The spirit of this event is for new art, which shows us what you are capable of putting together within a month but also shows us if you are able to draw up 2 comics per week and if we can rely on you.

We know there are a ton of great writers and artists out there but bring us the new and awesome from your arsenal. If others have already seen it published anywhere, it's not new enough.

It was appended that the same applies to sketches and proofs, not just for functional comics. It was also noted that it applies to personal display forums like Deviantart.

But the deadline isn't until the end of the month. You've got weeks to get something new rolling, if you're motivated.

Say, I have a hypothetical. Say the comic is extremely good, and people really love it, and they want to see it animated. 1) Could you turn it from a comic to a cartoon? 2) Would you need the consent of the creator of the comic? 3) Could you make anyone be a voice actor in it, or would the creator pick the voice actors?

Hi,

Can the comics be part of a larger story, so its split into 2-page bursts each week, or are you wanting them to start with a topic and end on the next page?

Mr.Mattress:
Say, I have a hypothetical. Say the comic is extremely good, and people really love it, and they want to see it animated. 1) Could you turn it from a comic to a cartoon? 2) Would you need the consent of the creator of the comic? 3) Could you make anyone be a voice actor in it, or would the creator pick the voice actors?

So are you asking if the escapist would force the comic creator to have his comic animated?

pooryohei:

megalomania:
I am interested in entering for a bit of a laugh - is there any artist out there who is willing to collaborate with a writer; I'm a scientist by trade with a pretty acerbic sense of humour. My ideas have no story line so each comic would be stand alone.

Also I have no interest in being employed to write web-comics, so if I somehow was part of the winning team I would decline the contract...(bet your all jumping to work with me now!)

If there are any of you artists who are interested gimme a shout!

If you don't want to make webcomics then you probably shouldn't enter a webcomic contest. Why would you want to waste the time of the escapist employees and possibly screw over both the other contestants and the poor artist you got to draw for you?

I'm sorry but I am denied the right to compete simply because I have a decent job that I like already? As far as I am concerned it is a contest to see who can be a funny writer and artist, not an extended job interview for a web-comic writer.

Also as I made it clear in my post that I have no interest in taking the job, I think any artists who decide to they would like to work with me can figure that out.

As for screwing over other contestants... if you all can't beat a rank amateur like me maybe you aren't good enough to get paid to write/draw a webcomic.

Edit - Although I may not have made it very clear in my first post, I am interested in writing web comics, just not interested in getting paid to do so.

pooryohei:

Mr.Mattress:
Say, I have a hypothetical. Say the comic is extremely good, and people really love it, and they want to see it animated. 1) Could you turn it from a comic to a cartoon? 2) Would you need the consent of the creator of the comic? 3) Could you make anyone be a voice actor in it, or would the creator pick the voice actors?

So are you asking if the escapist would force the comic creator to have his comic animated?

Maybe I am...

megalomania:

pooryohei:

megalomania:
I am interested in entering for a bit of a laugh - is there any artist out there who is willing to collaborate with a writer; I'm a scientist by trade with a pretty acerbic sense of humour. My ideas have no story line so each comic would be stand alone.

Also I have no interest in being employed to write web-comics, so if I somehow was part of the winning team I would decline the contract...(bet your all jumping to work with me now!)

If there are any of you artists who are interested gimme a shout!

If you don't want to make webcomics then you probably shouldn't enter a webcomic contest. Why would you want to waste the time of the escapist employees and possibly screw over both the other contestants and the poor artist you got to draw for you?

I'm sorry but I am denied the right to compete simply because I have a decent job that I like already? As far as I am concerned it is a contest to see who can be a funny writer and artist, not an extended job interview for a web-comic writer.

Also as I made it clear in my post that I have no interest in taking the job, I think any artists who decide to they would like to work with me can figure that out.

As for screwing over other contestants... if you all can't beat a rank amateur like me maybe you aren't good enough to get paid to write/draw a webcomic.

Edit - Although I may not have made it very clear in my first post, I am interested in writing web comics, just not interested in getting paid to do so.

Hey man don't get all bent out of shape. I was just confused about why someone would want to enter a contest knowing form the beginning that they didn't want the prize.

Mr.Mattress:

pooryohei:

Mr.Mattress:
Say, I have a hypothetical. Say the comic is extremely good, and people really love it, and they want to see it animated. 1) Could you turn it from a comic to a cartoon? 2) Would you need the consent of the creator of the comic? 3) Could you make anyone be a voice actor in it, or would the creator pick the voice actors?

So are you asking if the escapist would force the comic creator to have his comic animated?

Maybe I am...

lol ok just wondering. Somehow I don't think that would happen but you never know.

megalomania:

I'm sorry but I am denied the right to compete simply because I have a decent job that I like already? As far as I am concerned it is a contest to see who can be a funny writer and artist, not an extended job interview for a web-comic writer.

Also as I made it clear in my post that I have no interest in taking the job, I think any artists who decide to they would like to work with me can figure that out.

As for screwing over other contestants... if you all can't beat a rank amateur like me maybe you aren't good enough to get paid to write/draw a webcomic.

Edit - Although I may not have made it very clear in my first post, I am interested in writing web comics, just not interested in getting paid to do so.

No one said you weren't allowed, it would just be a courtesy to everyone involved if you didn't put something into the system which specifically was not meant to win. This contest is much like a job audition--it's an assessment of skill and capacity to do work, designed to lead the most promising candidate to a paid position. Entering without wanting the position is like sending out a resume without wanting the job. It sends the wrong message, and doesn't make much sense.

As for being able to 'beat a rank amateur,' this entire contest is amateur. Professional projects would already have their own forum. They'd also be disqualified according to the rules. Someone's probably going to win, and that person/group will likely have been a 'rank amateur' before winning the contract.

Not that I mean to discourage you from getting into webcomics. There are a number of artists that have already posted in this thread, all of whom have at least some interest in drawing a webcomic. Only one of them can win. You could collaborate on something, even abiding by the rules of the contest, and post it to show people an example contest entry and earn some bragging rights. Put it in a link and you'd generate some initial traffic if you elected to host your strip elsewhere. Without being in the contest itself, you could profit from it and stimulate the community. Then everybody wins.

Mr.Mattress:
Say, I have a hypothetical. Say the comic is extremely good, and people really love it, and they want to see it animated. 1) Could you turn it from a comic to a cartoon? 2) Would you need the consent of the creator of the comic? 3) Could you make anyone be a voice actor in it, or would the creator pick the voice actors?

such a thing is normally talked about during contract, like with merchandicing. though I believe the default is you retain ownership in that instance.

I'll be entering in about a week. I was going to start a game's related comic, so I may as well see if the Escapist is interested in my idea. But the main characters are three females...so I don't like my chances ^^0 My medium also isn't digital, it's all hand drawn and coloured with copic markers.

Anyway, let's see.

Soo... what's The Escapist's stance on pen names and pseudonyms?

I work under a few, and not for nefarious reasons. I just enjoy my privacy and general anonymity.

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