Hey ! You're back!
Okay, so that interior plate by David Dryburgh? It's had that teeny tiny change and is now (I presume) being inked and colored. He also agreed to take on the other inside plate. So all the internal art has been accounted for – there are three and they are in color.
Click on that art at the top of the page and get an eyeful of what Lee Madison has been working at. I told you he was worth the wait. Yes! It's a Free Worlds League minesweeper, the Mastodon. Pretty nifty if I do say so, and I have Rick Raisley to thank as it was his Heavy Metal Vee software which made designing the little beauty so simple.
Just wait until you see the Horatio Bridgelayer. I cannot use it right now as it is undergoing some small changes in the details. But it should be ready in a few days, if not tomorrow. Maybe it will head this blog with next week's installment.
I have hired a new artist, a fellow name of Ian who hails from England and whose 3D renders on the forums caught my eye. Some (not all) are good. One or two will translate well into black and white and I need a new artist along these lines since Mike Sullivan has gone on hiatus. Ian will be doing the Sarpedon for the Free Worlds League and from the look of the roughs, it is shaping up to be a winner.
As you know, the writing is nearly done. We combed through and shipped the Record Sheets Annex to our layout man, James Devlin yesterday. I would like to say the writeups are nearly ready to ship, but while waiting for the art to catch up to the writing, I have had time on my hands and been idly reading and kicking my heels as I go through writer's withdrawal. It sucks.
A few days back, I got a message from Eric Ou (Eriance) that he was ready to take on my other vehicles. Considering the stand-up job he did with the Zephyrus, I leaped at the opportunity. No, I have not sent the vehicle writeups yet. Before you scratch your head, let me explain. He also has been working on re-doing the 'Mechs from TRO:3055, as practice and as a way of correcting some of the less impressive pieces of art found inside that venerable tome. I don't think he is working from the 3055 Update, mind you, but his effort is appreciated by every BattleTech fan, I am sure.
That said, he offered a few of the pieces for sale to me.
Now I know what you are thinking. “Steve! You already said there would be no more additions to the TRO, that the last 'Mech had been put to bed. What gives?!”
Well, I had a Corvair dream.
Those of you approaching your half-century mark know what I mean. Strangely enough, there was an Asian fellow in a military uniform in it. During the part of the dream where I had my Rampside on a lift and was inspecting the engine, he appeared and asked “Where is the love?”
Yeah, it didn't mean anything to me either until I was combing through the 'Mech writeups last night and realized the Draconis Combine had only four 'Mechs for the TRO:3063. Seeing as these guys were the ones who began cranking out Heavy PPCs and other wonderful gadgets in the late 3060s, you might expect a bit more to their lineup. After all, nearly every other faction has five or more 'Mechs, solid advances on the state of the art.
Ted Kurita was right. At least, I think that is who the Asian guy was. So imagine my surprise when two of the 'extra' 'Mechs Eric is doing turn out to be the Gallowglas and the Daimyo. Well, I had a reason to get hot and heavy with the HMP again; limited only by the era and by the fact that any changes have to match the look of the 3055 warload these machines carry, I got busy. Geoff has gone over them and given a preliminary thumbs-up to both designs. I need more detail from him but it's beginning to look like two new machines will join the Draconis Combine BattleMech lineup soon.
Naturally, I will have to get cracking on the writing, as the weather gets colder and colder. My fingers freeze up uncomfortably fast and make typing a chore. But the cool part is that the art has already been done, and that has been a holdup for the past few weeks.
Hell yes, it's going to cost more. But I can afford it (barely). And the publishing deadline has not been changed. I am glad to give this pair of 'Mechs a shot – they are seldom seen on the battlefields over in our local game shop. Perhaps their 3063 iterations will fare better.
That's all for this week. Our blog has topped six thousand hits, which assures me most of you are stopping by to get the word – and hopefully, get the word out. I will be changing the music a bit in the next few days – as usual, seldom-heard tunes will lead the way. A few of the more well-heeled members have dared to hit the PayPal button and for that I am grateful. I used the funds to pay artists in a speedy manner. Thank you.
Thanks for coming by.