Cthulhu the Conqueror: A Graphic Novel
Betrayed and imprisoned by the gods he protected, Cthulhu has awoken and escaped. He's seeking answers... in blood.
Cthulhu the Conqueror: A Graphic Novel
Betrayed and imprisoned by the gods he protected, Cthulhu has awoken and escaped. He's seeking answers... in blood.
That which can eternal lie...
In strange aeons even death may fly...
AND NOW THE GODS MUST DIE
Vengeance... has a heart of its own.
The gist is pretty simple: Cthulhu battles the gods. We understand that this is intriguing enough to many of you, but we hope you'd want to know why Cthulhu is doing all of this brutal god-killing stuff.
We're asking for a minimum of $9,666 in Canadian monies, which is around $7,300 USD. We feel this is the perfect minimum amount to get everything we want done just the way it should be. Naturally, we'd love it if we went over that number, and we do have stretch goals mapped out, but we also must be at least somewhat realistic with our current vision.
What does the minimum needed funding get us? Well, everything we need, really. It will allow Myke (the artist) and I to dedicate time to getting the story and art just right, and as many of you probably already know, the crafting of a 80+ page comic book story is incredibly time-consuming. Not that we mind! But we may still have to take time from other paying work and also, of course, work in our off-hours. We also need to get this all done in a reasonable amount of time... I mean, who likes waiting a year for a kickass comic? We prefer months; as would you, no doubt.
Currently, the financial goal we've set focuses on mostly digital fulfillment, but we really, really, really want to get this project out in print. Nothing quite beats the feel of a good trade, you know? We have POD (Print On Demand) options readily available to us so we can fulfill a minimum amount of softcover (aka trade paperback / TPB) orders, and if things blow up beyond our wildest dreams, we have excellent mass printing options at our disposal, as well.
The add-on items have also been carefully considered, and we will be able to do both small and large runs of items like t-shirts, no sweat.
Shipping is another factor we have carefully weighed, and we have tried hard to keep the reward pricing fair without killing ourselves with shipping costs. Ultimately, we want to make YOU happy. That's what's most important to us. Without you, your support, and your involvement, this project means diddly squat.
As money raised will go immediately to production of Cthulhu the Conqueror upon successful funding, Myke will draw, colour, and letter the entire series (of which a large chunk is already done), while I'll write and script everything, fully realizing the story our ambitious vision requires.
Cthulhu the Conqueror will run a minimum of 88 pages over four issues. If stretch goals are hit, it could go up to 100 or more pages quite easily. As each chapter is completed (estimated to be in batches of 20 to 22 pages each), the digital edition of the chapters will be sent to all backers.
The final, printed edition of the graphic novel (as well as other rewards) will be mailed to its respective backers upon completion of the entire story. If stretch goals are hit, more pages and chapters will be added, filling out this tale even further. More gods. More story. More carnage. Last-- but certainly not least-- is merchandise, including bookmarks, prints/posters, desktop wallpapers, hand drawn sketches, buttons, shirts, and signatures.
Please note that the envisioned time for release of the collected edition of all four issues is April, 2016. We strongly feel this gives us enough time to get everything done just the way we want to.
Funding also gives us a chance to...
- Be able to afford some print copies to sell at shows and shops.
- Afford to create prints on-hand and other merchandise.
- To cover some of the personal expenses incurred while dedicating time to Cthulhu the Conqueror. Bills and life, you see...
- Fully know that this is a viable property that people want to see happen.
- If this is a resounding success, there will be more.
Alright, enough of that yammering... on to what Cthulhu the Conqueror is all about!
The concept of Cthulhu the Conqueror came about in 2012 when Myke created a comic cover for a thread on the Whitechapel boards. The weekly REmake/REmodel Challenge was "The Genre Experiments Of H.P.Lovecraft", with the instructions being "PULPY LOVECRAFT". We understand that the best of these covers were featured on the website Bleeding Cool.
Having seen so much work of Cthulhu done where he was viewed as a leviathan-like monster from the depths, Myke wanted to take up that challenge create a more functional, action-oriented character, departing quite a bit from the mythical beast Cthulhu has been portrayed as over the decades. Myke submitted this piece and later was contacted by a moderator, who told him "You can't post upcoming projects on this thread." He told the moderator it wasn't an upcoming project, and the mod replied "Well, it SHOULD be." The piece was then shown around the Internet, and lots of Mythos and comics fans seemed to really love it.
Now, we want to bring this cool concept to life... but we'll need your help!
While we don't want to give too much of the story away already, we can say that Cthulhu was an agent and special operator for the most powerful beings in our universe-- the gods-- and after he saved them all from ghastly, mind-rending terrors known only as "the True Old Ones", Cthulhu is tricked into going to the Nether Realm to wait, dead and dreaming, in what is supposed to be permanent exile.
Somehow, Cthulhu is awakened eons later and is allowed to escape his twilight, starry banishment. He starts trying to figure out why he was betrayed straight away. Oh, and he wants revenge, too. He is a warrior-general to the gods, so it stands to reason that violence would be on his angry, vengeful mind. However, in this iteration of dread Cthulhu, he's not just some crazed maniac, looking to bring only war on the gods; he's also a deep thinker with a complex heart and spirit, driven by much more than mere primal blood lust.
As the story unfolds, you'll get to see Cthulhu reveal his true self-- the being that not many creatures are able to see or become close to. His wants, his needs, and his desires are for you to discover as you read through this rip-roaring tale full of action, heartbreak, horror, and woe. We also pay homage to our roots, and lovingly give subtle (and, uh, not-so-subtle) nods to everything that inspires us from the Mythos and more.
- You'll have the opportunity to find out what secrets his love, Kali, holds within her.
- Just what did Woden do to deserve Cthulhu's wrath?
- Cthulhu captures and demands a lift from Camazotz--what does the dread lord need so desperately in Xibalba?
- Epic combat between Poseidon and Cthulhu must be had!
- Fei Lian controls the winds... but can he control his doom?
- Mighty thunder god Thor will most certainly have a few words with Cthulhu.
- What wisdom will Dažbog impart that Cthulhu so desperately needs?
- Will kind Mokosh also help... or hinder?
- Who exactly is running this show of betrayal and murder, anyway?
- How will Bast help the goddess of war and wisdom, Athena?
- Is dark, deadly god Orcus friend... or foe?
- Can Ogbunabali and Nyame work together to get their god-peoples to safety before Cthulhu comes a'knockin'?
- Watch Cthulhu flashback to his battles with the True Old Ones!
And so much more that happens... well, we'd love to surprise you with the rest of Cthulhu the Conqueror! Thus, in many ways, what happens next is indeed really up to you.
Artist Myke Allen is professional illustrator with some indie comics work under his belt. His work has also been seen in the interior of Degrassi the next Generation. This is his first solo-artist project Kickstarter campaign, but he's a dedicated and incredibly driven artist who'll passionately deliver an exciting, adventurous story for fans of bloody comic art and the top dark lord of the unspeakably timeless Cthulhu Mythos!
Steve Saunders (that's me) is a long-time friend and collaborator of Myke's (poor guy), and I'll be diligently handling the story with me, along with the writing, scripting, editing, and other tenebrous creative duties. Myke says that bringing me on board has helped to fully flesh out his original concept, and we have really enjoyed working together on this joint creative vision quite a bit. My past comics work is varied, and includes numerous shorts (on which I've worked with Myke with some of them) and localizations (English adaptation, basically). I've also been involved with a number of other comics, webcomics, comics press, short stories, roleplaying games and video games material, and many other professional writing, copywriting, composing and sound effects, and editing projects and jobs. I like being busy-- I'm used to being busy.
As expected, we'll have some add-ons available. In case you miss them in all this text, we'll be sure to remind you during the updates. Add-On prices include shipping where applicable and are in Canadian Dollars. (So when you think about it, it's a pretty damned good deal...)
Official Cthulhu the Conqueror digital Soundtrack: $5
Cthulhu the Conqueror small (1") button: $1
Cthulhu the Conqueror large (2.25") button: $2
Cthulhu the Conqueror T-Shirt: $20
Yes, women's cut shirts and sizes will also be available, along with sizes S-XXL in unisex shirts. We are fully willing and ready to accommodate your shirt-size needs!
Cthulhu the Conqueror Bookmarks: $5 (you get both)
Cthulhu the Conqueror signed 8x11 print: $5
Cthulhu the Conqueror signed 12x18 Print*: $12
A Special Sketch from Myke Allen: $3
This will be done on the sketch-page of the print CTC TPB. Or, if you just want the digital version, we can mail you the sketch (free shipping if included with other add-ons; extra $2 if you just want the sketch). You can have as many sketches as you like* and are willing to pay for, as well as adding sketches to reward tiers that already offer them. Original sketches are available for free (the first sketch) starting at the BLIGHTED PREVOST OF THE CULT ($35) reward level and up!
(*Within reason. Myke is a workhorse, yes, but not a cyborg sketching-killing machine... yet.)
Please note that these are mock-ups and not visually the actual sizes, nor are they the 100% exactly how they'll turn out! More like 99%... Like the original CTC cover that started all this, we may add our studio logo to it.
Rest assured that we plan for the final products to be as close to these as possible, but, as said, there may me minor changes (for the better, we assure you).
First stretch goal: As soon as we go over $10,000 CAD, everyone who backs at the CRAZED CULTIST reward level and higher gets Cthulhu the Conqueror vinyl stickers! The higher we go, we'd be tickled to add larger/bumper stickers.
At $12,000 we'll add another t-shirt to the available shirts. AND we'll add a print of the Cenotaph of the Ancients for the FELL VICAR OF BLOODY CTHULHU ($85) level backers and up! The size of the print will depend on the amount of backers at this level!
At the $13,000 mark, we will extend the story by one more issue-chapter, making Cthulhu the Conqueror clock in at 100+ pages. We would really like to see this one happen! There are so many gods and only so many pages, you see... In fact, if we could get this story to five chapters coming in around 130 or more pages, we would be over not just THE moon, but several other moons, as well.
If this project succeeds in a manner that is mind-blastingly awesome, then yes, there will be more stretch goals. Better stretch goals.
Some of our other planned stretch goals include a single issue starring Cthulhu in his best conquering form as a part of a pulpy styled black and white comic magazine, harking back to the likes of Savage Sword of Conan ($20,000-- if we get there!). Another one would be more runs of the printed version, yet another kind of shirt, new/larger prints and posters, and more. As the campaign progresses, more on the stretch goals shall be revealed... but only if the stars are right!
This project has actually been trickling along for a couple of years. While we discussed the story, Myke worked on art concepts, and a bunch of other details. As it stands, the first issue/chapter is well on its way art-wise, and I have scripted most of the four issues/chapters and had fully outlined the entire Cthulhu the Conqueror story... including future installments!
That's what I mean in the video by "buckling down". We have the story, the outline, most of the completed script, and a lot of art and pages. If this campaign is successful, we will be able to laser-focus on seeing this project fully realized.
Why tell you all this? Because we know what it's like to wonder where on a project a creative team is when we're about to beam them our hard-earned money. We want to be as open and transparent as possible about this, and we're pretty sure you appreciate it.
Myke and I will also be shooting videos to show you our progress, the creation process, and all that fun jazz that goes with a project like this. As for fulfillment of physical items, we have managed to arrange for everything to be done at one print shop-- or to be handed over to a local business, and will be handled directly by that print shop. This way we can keep a closer eye on everything as it's made, allowing for us to make any necessary adjustments or changes or corrections as situations pop up.
(Because Murphy' Law applies; so situations will no doubt rear their multi-eyed heads!)
Yeah, we already have plans for the future. Myke and I would relish the chance to turn this into a trilogy of 100+ page stories over the next couple of years, and we're itching to bring industry buddies on board for a comic book anthology or two of tales set in the Cthulhu the Conqueror universe. The first anthology even already has a title: Dreams from the Nether Realm
We would absolutely love to see this turn into a reality. And we hope you would, too!
We've been planning this whole thing for quite awhile, and just so you know, we're trying to get many of the fulfillment aspects done through people we know and trust, as well as through local businesses where we can.
Our t-shirts will be printed up by none other than master screenprinter Duane Diebolt (aka Master Control Program) who is an accomplished artist in his own right, having done numerous synthwave album covers for many artists, including Protector 101 and the Miami Cannibal Massacre compilation. The Cthulhu the Conqueror shirts will be silk-screened by hand, making them all the more awesome to behold. The only time we won't use silk-screening is if we, say, do the Dead Cthulhu on His Throne image in full colour, and we'd need a Direct to Garment (DTG) printer for that-- and we already know just who to go to for this option!
The Cthulhu the Conqueror official soundtrack will be composed by Mr. Zoth and the Werespiders (the music alter-ego of me) and professionally mastered by longtime music industry veteran, the outstanding and terrifically skilled Wade Alin.
We have decided to print the hardcopies of the collected and complete edition of Cthulhu the Conqueror locally. Sure, this will be a bit more expensive, but we actually get to be right there when the books are printed, and we also get a lot more freedom with the product. Plus, if anything should go wrong, it can be fixed in a matter of hours or days at the most, instead of waiting weeks because of long distances.
Please keep in mind that we are a Canadian-based operation, and so our funding goal is in Canadian Dollars. We've tried to keep the pledge reward prices fair for Canadians, of course!
Thank you so much for your time and consideration. And for reading this far.
We have a website set up-- because of course we do! We'll be posting stuff there, as well as the requisite and regular Kickstarter updates
Are you ready for... Cthulhu the Conqueror?
"I cannot be bargained with. I cannot be reasoned with. I do not feel pity for you. I will feel no remorse, and you will feel only fear. And I will not stop until you are all DEAD."
Risks and challenges
Our biggest challenge will be full print production for the final phase of the comic. Having never distributed print editions of a graphic novel before, we've been researching and choosing the best methods of deliver to get the final product to your door on time! We're also going to be working with some great people and companies, making sure this is all done correctly, and that everything is kept up to snuff.
Our working model is to have fulfillment of physical rewards items done locally-- and this has already been arranged. We'll have full control of the product and be able to handle any issues that arise firsthand. Naturally, we know what can go wrong will go wrong, and rest assured we have tried to take that into account as much as possible. We have other local options if terrible fortune strikes, and we also have non-local options, just in case.
We also have plans in place if something unthinkable occurs, like illness or accident; as, sadly, sometimes poop happens. In the end, we want to make sure this comic is released on time and is in your happy hands, eyes, and souls by the expected due dates.
Another thing we must consider is that we are based in Canada, so after all the Kickstarter and Amazon Payments fees are sorted, we must then report the funds to Revenue Canada, who may then take a cut. Now, this shouldn't cause any problems, as we have already factored this into our campaign goal, but it's a good fact to know when going into this sort of investment. Arrangements have been made for accounting services should funding prove much higher than our conservative expectations.
The final item here is also actually one of the first issues we thought about: Shipping. Look, I'll be perfectly honest: Shipping rates can suck. That said, we've tried to roll them into the pledge and add-on pricing as much as possible without hurting ourselves too much. We know we may eat it on shipping here and there-- but that's okay; we're prepared for that sort of thing.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)