Hey everyone, I'm Kevin Powers. Today I want to tell you a little bit about my latest campaign, a brand-new Ultimate Edition of my original graphic novel - and passion project - Patriot-1.
What's the elevator pitch? This book is basically Tom Clancy's Captain America.
Five years ago, I launched my very first Kickstarter campaign to fund a print run for Patriot-1.
The campaign was a success and the book would go on to win a Bronze IPPY Award for Outstanding Graphic Novel – Drama/Documentary in 2015. Make no mistake, I am immensely proud of the book and it was the final product of 7 years of development and the hard work of my two outstanding collaborators, Eisner-nominated line artist Dexter Wee and IPPY Award winning colorist Donna Gregory.
Patriot-1 tells the story of Delta Force Operator Ken Baker, a disillusioned soldier who is getting ready to leave the military. During what was supposed to be a routine mission, Baker's team is ambushed and he and his team leader are taken captive by a new group called The Tiger's Fist. After his team leader is killed, Baker escapes and joins up with former teammates who are working for a secretive CIA group. He soon finds himself embroiled in a conspiracy that involves The Tiger's Fist, a giant energy corporation and traitorous team members.
In the process, Baker reaffirms the ideals he fights for, donning customized armor and adopting the codename "Patriot-1".
The original cover of the Kickstarter edition is here:
Now, I am looking to present a completely re-lettered and re-mastered edition of the book with a tweaked story, new pages and more in Patriot-1: Ultimate Edition.
The goal of this campaign is a print run for the new edition. I've decided to keep the rewards very straightforward to get the book in your hands as seamlessly as possible.
So what’s different?
The original edition featured 176 pages of story. The Ultimate Edition features 194 pages of story. 7 pages of the original book are gone, but 25 pages take their place providing a tweaked story offering deeper character development and greater thematic elements. Additionally (and because I’m a better letterer than I was five years ago), the entire book has been re-lettered and every page has been re-mastered.
Pictured below is the "Spec Ops" Edition that was solicited to comic shops and retailers. The only difference between the original Kickstater Edition and The Spec Ops Edition is the cover. The Spec Ops Edition is close to what the Ultimate Edition will look like, but with new logo and cover treatment and it will be 25 pages bigger!
While I am proud of the original edition, and the IPPY Award is a tremendous accomplishment, there was room to dive deeper and Dexter and Donna graciously returned to seamlessly add these new pages into the book.
Ultimate Rewards, or, "Why we're here"
I wanted to keep the rewards simple and focus on the book. My main goal is to get the book in your hands. Since the book is pretty much finished, it's a matter of sending it off to the printer. I may add some as the campaign goes on, but for now, this is all about the book!
Just like the original campaign, every print backer will get a bookmark, this one with it's own "Ultimate Edition."
A special addition! I recently discovered two of the CKRTLAB hand-painted vinyl figures I had done for the original campaign. Only 20-25 of these were made for backers, and I'm making these two available here.
Who is this book for?
The easiest way to describe Patriot-1 is "Tom Clancy's Captain America." At it's core, Patriot-1 is a spy and action thriller. But it's also about a small group of people determined to do the right thing and fight for the lofty moral ideal that not only Americans, but people all over the world strive for. If you enjoy Captain America, G.I. Joe, and Tom Clancy type stories, this book is or you.
What is this book rated?
While you might think the book is hyper-violent, it isn't. I've tried to keep it at PG-13 levels. That's mostly my preference as I want the book to be accessible to various ages and tastes. The violence is toned down for the most part and the language is kept at PG-13 levels. All F-bombs are given the classic "&$%#" comic treatment because I've always been a fan of that.
Why the new Ultimate Edition?
After the book’s release, I started plotting out the sequel. At the same time, I started working on a screenplay version of the book. As I continued to work on the screenplay, I worked on a few different versions of a direct sequel and a few standalones. Right when I cracked the formula I wanted for the sequel, the 2016 election happened and I felt the need to start over.
That’s not necessarily a political statement; it was just that with all that’s going on in the world at that time, I wanted to tell a different story that better represented what Patriot-1 stands for.
With that, the new sequel didn’t take long to plot and then script. But with that also came some major changes to the screenplay version, which I was pushing heavily and shopping around at the time. The sequel experienced a few starts and stops and as I continued to work on the screenplay, my love for this character and what he represents deepened.
Last year at New York Comic Con, during a lull in the crowd, I sat down and looked through the original book and that’s when I decided to revisit it and move forward with the Ultimate Edition.
Show me what's new!
Here's a look at some of the new pages that Dexter and Donna have returned to add to the book. EVERY new page offers new and compelling elements to the characters and plot.
The core story of the book remains the same, but the changes made really benefit the character and the world being created. There's a fresh coat of paint and some new additions, presenting a brand-new experience.
One major example of a change made that has important implications later in the story and provides new character depth for both Baker and the main supporting character Valerie Hughes is shown here:
In the original edition, Baker pulls Valerie out of the way from gunfire:
In the Ultimate Edition, Valerie not only enters the building first, she pulls Baker out of the way. This may seem like a minor detail, but it's all part of a deeper story arc for Valerie and a potential secret she is keeping that is revealed later (you'll also see the page is crisper and cleaner):
Check out some more differences in the pages:
Here's a preview!
Is this the “definitive version”?
Yes. This is the definitive version of Patriot-1.
Is there still a sequel?
Yes, Patriot-1: Conviction is still in production, though it was put on hold to focus on this new edition. Many of the changes in this new edition actually benefit the continued story of these characters.
What else makes this edition special?
In addition to the tweaked story, new lettering and re-mastered pages, The Ultimate Edition will also include the popular character files from the first original book, as well as the alternate cover gallery. PLUS. we're going to include some early concept art that was previously only included in digital editions.
Where is the money going?
The money raised from this campaign is going directly to printing the book, just as the original campaign did. When we surpass the goal, we'll start looking at some stretch goals as well, but my primary concern is getting the book to you.
Risks and challenges
There are always risks that come with campaigns. First and foremost, if we don't get funded, we will retool and try again, just as we have in the past.
Of course, life happens and that may cause delays with deadlines or shipping rewards, but we're committed to getting the book to you in a timely manner.
I'm very big about transparency with Kickstarters and I won't BS you of something comes up that may hinder production.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (29 days)