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A dark fantasy comic saga inspired by Dark Souls and Inception, from acclaimed Bust creator Dave Cook and artist Rafael Desquitado Jr.
A dark fantasy comic saga inspired by Dark Souls and Inception, from acclaimed Bust creator Dave Cook and artist Rafael Desquitado Jr.
166 backers pledged £2,087 to help bring this project to life.

About

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£2,087

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We're funded!! Woo!! Thank you everyone!

Can we hit our stretch goals next?

£1,800 - Comic goes full colour, thanks to artist Dennis Lehmann - UNLOCKED

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£2,200 - T-shirt for all £10+ backers

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£???? - ?????????????????????? (Unlocks if we hit £2,200)

What is Vessels?

Inspired by video game series Dark Souls and the movie Inception, Vessels #1 is the first issue of a dark fantasy comic saga that will take readers on a journey through the mind in a violent, medieval setting.

The creative team consists of Dave Cook, author of critically-acclaimed post apocalyptic comic series Bust, which is also successfully funded on Kickstarter, and Rafael Desquitado Jr, artist of sci-fi epic Constant.

Our hero Wake, sensing her pursuer nearby!
Our hero Wake, sensing her pursuer nearby!

What's The Story?

Set in the dying world of Cairnthala, a mysterious woman called Wake drifts from place to place in an attempt to evade the Eye-God, a destructive entity older than time itself. Wherever she goes, her terrifying pursuer follows, laying waste to everything in its path. 

So Wake has the weight of many deaths on her weary shoulders, and she is close to giving up all hope until she has a fateful run in with a gang of slavers in the wastelands...

Wake is swiftly taken captive in the grand city of Stratum where she meets crafty thief Marillon and G'Dala, a young Mind Keeper capable of entering and interpreting dreams to see the future. Together, the trio formulate a plan to slay the Eye-God and introduce a new age of light to the realm.

The story arc follows our three as they progress on their epic journey, but standing between them are the Vessels, five other-worldly warriors derived from each of the five senses, who have sworn to protect their god at all costs.

Each of these warriors are the living embodiment of our senses, and as such, take many traits from them. For example, the Vessel 'Sight' is a fierce knight who wears an helmet without eye holes, because she can simply see everything at once. 

Wake's travelling companion G'Dala
Wake's travelling companion G'Dala

This makes Sight an incredibly deadly foe, and like the boss fights in Dark Souls, Wake will need certain strategies to take them all out. We think you will really dig their design too, but we're keeping them under wraps until al little further into our campaign.

As the battle between Wake and the Vessels rages, the world of Cairnthala slips further into decay, causing dreams, reality and dimensions to intertwine - which creates a volatile new world full of dangers, mind-bending phenomena and horrifying creatures that defy comprehension. 

Wake's other comrade Marillon
Wake's other comrade Marillon

We hope you will join us on this epic journey, and consider backing our campaign to make it a reality.

How did Dark Souls inspire Vessels?

I mentioned that I'm a huge fan of Dark Souls and the collected works of From Software, and I always wanted to put that love into comic form. Off the bat, it's important to say that this isn't a blatant re-telling or it's full of cheesy, obvious nods to the games - plus, we don't want to get sued ;)

But there are broad themes, such as a world in its final days, cycles of light and dark powers that never seem to end, and the Vessels, who we have designed with the epic boss battles of Dark Souls in mind. They have unique powers and personalities that we think you will really enjoy.

Especially the Vessel 'Smell' - she is utterly insane and will be a real treat for Bloodborne fans especially, trust us!

Something fearsome dwells in this crypt. What could it be?
Something fearsome dwells in this crypt. What could it be?

There are subtle nods to blood sacrifices which, again, Bloodborne fans will enjoy. We see a certain group capturing and sacrificing innocent people to try and stop the Eye-God from tearing the world apart, but in short, it doesn't work.

We also have nods to Christopher Nolan's movie Inception, in the form of dream-like anomalies that occur across Cairnthala. Wake learns quickly that she can pull objects out of her dreams into the real world. It starts simple, then gets really out of hand by the end of issue #1.

This is a really big theme and we're going to be a setting up a real mystery for the whole of our proposed arc. Expect trippy, impossible feats, weird scenes and some proper 'WTF?' moments in this issue.

The Creative Team

That's me on the left, of course ;)
That's me on the left, of course ;)

Dave Cook - Based in Edinburgh, Scotland, Dave is the creator and author of Vessels as well as praised apocalyptic comic series Bust, which was successfully funded on Kickstarter twice (issues #1 and #2). He is also the founder of indie comic team Card Shark Comics.

Dark Souls is confidently one of his favourite video game series - seriously, he's obsessed - and Vessels is his love letter to From Software's work. The comic is dark, set in a dying world, littered with mystery and features terrible creatures to be dealt with.

Rafael is one hell of an artist
Rafael is one hell of an artist

Rafael Desquitado Jr. - Based in Spring Valley, California, Rafael is a fellow Dark Souls fanatic and talented artist. He was the creative force behind sci-fi epic Constant, and prison break webcomic Where the Light Is. You can check out his incredible body of work on DeviantArt here.

Our first glimpse of the legendary Vessels
Our first glimpse of the legendary Vessels

Why Kickstarter?

Dave has run two successful Kickstarters for Bust #1 and Bust 2: Wasteland Ronin, and is experienced in running solid, transparent and reasonably priced campaigns.

But why Kickstarter? In short, comics are expensive to make and our reward tiers are priced so you will only pay the same for your print issue and extras as you would at a convention or comic fair. For example, our issue will be £4 at release, and it's £4 on Kickstarter. No price hiking or funny business here!

Kickstarter is a wonderful platform that allows indie creators like Dave and Rafael make their dream projects come to life, and with your help we can create something truly wonderful together. 

Thanks for your time guys, and we look forward to getting Vessels #1 into your hands in Summer 2016.

-Dave

Risks and challenges

There are risks with any Kickstarter, but we're qualified to run this campaign as Dave has already had two comic projects successfully funded on Kickstarter - so our team knows how to price and deliver its products and extras with transparency and to high quality.

Expect rolling updates, fan polls, lots of communication from the team and a rare glimpse at the issue developing over time. In short, we will keep you as close to the creative process as possible.

If you have any questions about our campaign, you can email Dave direct at fastrez@gmail.com

Thanks for your support!

-Dave

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £1 or more About $1.42

    Every little helps in the battle for Cairnthala's soul. Even if you can only spare £1, it will help us create the first issue of Vessels.

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    Pledge £3 or more About $4

    Cairnthalan Knave! - You will receive a digital PDF of our first issue, which will be emailed directly to your inbox at release.

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    Pledge £4 or more About $6

    Cairnthalan Warrior! - You will receive a signed 35-page print copy of Vessels #1 and get your name in the issue as a recognised backer.

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    Pledge £10 or more About $14

    Cairnthalan Paladin! - You will receive a signed 35-page print copy of Vessels #1, a signed A4 poster of the front cover, and a thank you credit in our issue.

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    Pledge £20 or more About $28

    Cairnthalan Mindkeeper! - You will receive a signed 35-page print copy of Vessels #1, a signed A4 poster of the front cover, an exclusive A4 art print and a thank you credit in our issue.

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    Pledge £25 or more About $36

    Cairnthalan Mage! - You will receive a signed 35-page print copy of Vessels #1, a limited edition art pack of three tarot cards, each featuring one of our three main characters, and a thank you credit in our issue.

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    Pledge £35 or more About $50

    Cairnthalan Triumvirate! Be among the first to receive not one but three limited edition copes of Vessels #1 each with a variant cover that - when combined - creates one large piece of art featuring all our characters. Comes signed by Dave!

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    Pledge £40 or more About $57

    Cairnthalan Knight! - You will receive a signed 35-page print copy of Vessels #1, a signed A4 poster of the cover, an exclusive A4 art print and a limited edition tarot card art pack, featuring our three main characters.

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    Pledge £50 or more About $71

    Cairnthalan Vessel! - You will receive all of the rewards above, plus a second exclusive art print by acclaimed artist Al Reid. This is the ultimate Vessels package for a limited few backers!

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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge £100 or more About $142

    Cairnthalan Legend! This is a one of a kind reward - own the only first run copy of Vessels #1 that is signed by both Dave Cook and Rafael Desquitado. This copy will travel the world to be signed by both of us - and we'll give you one of every other reward available as well.

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Funding period

- (30 days)