Ask Ian for December '07 - Happy Decemberween!

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Postby BlueFantasy » Fri Dec 07, 2007 8:04 pm

Two questions for you this time, Ian.

1)In the Sonic and Knuckles special, during some wierd storm on the Island, Knux saved a little kangaroo/wallaby boy. While they were in a tree, a herd of dingoes ran by. Knux said not to worry, that they were peaceful. This whole idea seemed to be thrown out the window in the Knux mini. I think someone went so far as to say dingoes had not been seen on the island since the HZP was activated. So... how would you explain this? Different breeds of dingoes or something...? EDIT: Nevermind, thanks Toby. :) I musta overlooked that.

2)In Sonic Adventure, the main backbone of Tails' story was that he was coming into his own, being his own person insted of Sonic's shadow. His theme song(s) emphasize this. He was more independent in SA2, but after that he's gone back to crying "Sonic!" when he loses a life and such. The comic seems to have taken the idea where it needed to go, though. Was this done intentionally, to make Tails grow like he needs to in a comic as opposed to the games and Sonic X anime? Basically, did you put effort into making Tails follow through with SEGA's original intentions, or was it accidental?
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Postby Guest » Fri Dec 07, 2007 8:10 pm

BlueFantasy wrote:Two questions for you this time, Ian.

1)In the Sonic and Knuckles special, during some wierd storm on the Island, Knux saved a little kangaroo/wallaby boy. While they were in a tree, a herd of dingoes ran by. Knux said not to worry, that they were peaceful. This whole idea seemed to be thrown out the window in the Knux mini. I think someone went so far as to say dingoes had not been seen on the island since the HZP was activated. So... how would you explain this? Different breeds of dingoes or something...?


This was answered in the last page of last month's topic.

IanPotto wrote:
Question #11 wrote:Going waaaay back...In the Sonic and Knuckles special, we saw a pack of "friendly" dingoes roaming around restlessly. These were obviously not the dingoes of Gen. Stryker and co. So, er...what were they, and do they have anything to do with Harry, who always resented the military?


There is no canonical answer for that. It would appear the Dingoes were a far-reaching idea for Ken Penders and their appearance in the "Sonic & Knuckles" was a hint of things to come. For fun, we can claim they're a rag-tag band of deserters that will have joined-up with their brethren when we next see the Dingoes.
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Postby Spectre the Hechidnat » Sat Dec 08, 2007 12:45 am

1. Was there any sort of relationship between Liza and Espio beyond that of friends?

2. Do you ever intend to tell us who the father of Rutan-from Mobius: 25 Years Later-is? Or did you never bother to think that one out?
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Postby GrandMasterGalvatron » Sat Dec 08, 2007 4:19 pm

1. After the gathering, the seven Chaos Emeralds are formed in the Special Stage. The heroes are then later in possession of the white Chaos Emerald as they received it from Feist. The Sonic Rush Adventure tie in shows that Marine has the green Chaos Emerald. If the all of Sonic Rush Adventure has happened, and Sonic and Tails have returned to the main zone, then where are the Chaos Emeralds as of right now?

2. Also, how did Marine get the green emerald? Can everyone just up and do special stages now?
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Postby Knuxfan15 » Sat Dec 08, 2007 6:48 pm

I actually have a question of my own thats been bugging me recently. In a letter response I saw in a KtE issue years ago when someone asked about the birth order of the Guardians, it was stated that Janelle Li was the daughter of Thunderhawk who was the son of Sojourner who was the son of Spectre. Now I'm hearing Sojourner was the son of Thunderhawk and the father of Janelle Li. Which brings me to my question because I'm confused now: what is the exact birth order of the Brotherhood from Hawking on down?
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Postby 2tailed » Sat Dec 08, 2007 8:49 pm

1. Has Mike ever dictated story/plot elements that you were then required to include in your stories, or is he more hands-off than that?
2. Once Tails gets over Fiona, are you thinking of giving him a crush on someone else?
3. If Aurora ever appears to other characters, will she look like an Echidna, or like one of their species?
4. Is the original Metal Sonic on your dead-as-a-doornail list?
5. Do you have any significant roles for Amy to play in the future?
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Postby EthanEmerald » Sat Dec 08, 2007 9:59 pm

1) Faded-Myth sorta reminded me of Big the Cat. So far we haven't seen him in the comic while you've been writing. Where do you see him in continuity right now? Is he living in New Mobotropolis? Or is he fishing at Emerald Coast with froggy? Or living in the Mysterious Cat Country? I know we've seen him several times in Knothole Village (mainly cameos in crowd scenes,) but was he a part of the population "zapped" to New Mobotropolis? He's a fun character and I'd like to see more of him!
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Postby Ixis101 » Sat Dec 08, 2007 10:16 pm

1) Referring to the topic above, can we get a definite that Thunderhawk is older than Sojourner? It appears that way in all the images, but in KtE#26 (IIRC), Spectre announces to Princess Sally that Thunderhawk is Sojourner's son. Now this may just be a grand typo, but I feel this is something Spectre would KNOW. I know you were not the writer for this period, but if you had to choose sides, which is it: Sojourner then Thunderhawk, or vice-versa???
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Postby Ian Flynn » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:50 am

Answers for 12/2/07 - 12/8/07

Question #1 wrote:I thought that Elias' mother said that his offspring wouldn't qualify to be next in line for the throne? Or was there a Catch-22 or some other loophole that I missed?


The snag is that Alexis is ineligible for the crown since she was fathered by someone else. Any future children by Elias and Meg would be royalty.

Question #2 wrote:And catching the Sonic Underground DVD topic had me wonder, how much freedom do you have with a property like that? Specifically, if you wanted to bring in Sleet and Dingo, would you be able to, or are they off-limits?


I can't say for 100%-certain, but I believe such elements would be open to use. I wouldn't want to bring them in right now, though, since we are busy enough juggling so many elements already.

Question #3 wrote:Speaking of Snively, do you think he is evil, or do you think he just goes with whoever has the best chance of winning at the moment.


I think Snively is a nasty piece of work with the barest nugget of humanity in him. Snively is capable for working for the greater good so long as his own interests aren't at stake. Snively looks out for himself first and foremost and at the expense of anyone or anything else. That level of selfishness, I think, can be classified as evil.

The real test of how deep his corruption goes is the still unanswered fate of Hope. If we find her alive and well down the road we know that, maybe, there's some sliver of humanity in the runt. If he really did give the order to blow her out of the sky then all bets are off - he's irredeemable.

Question #4 wrote:Way back in Sonic #95, Athair says that Tails is Merlins YOUNGEST nephew. Does that mean that there are other member of the Prower family we haven't seen yet?


I don't want to say too much, but I will let it slip that we'll be looking at the extended family of one SegaSonic character pretty soon.

Question #5 wrote:Are Black Death, the Enchantress, and Mathais Poe dead, or did Sir Connery just lock them up?


Yes, they were eliminated. See STH#164, P4, pn2.

Question #6 wrote:Are Edmund and Dimitri twin brothers or is one older than the other?


I always assumed they were twins. Somewhat in support of that idea, at the time their first appearance was published it was a common misconception that real echidnas always gave birth to clutches of two.

Question #7 wrote:Do you prefer doing issues which contain a single story (i.e. Eggman Empire arc) or do you prefer ones that feature multiple stories per issue (i.e. Enerjak Reborn arc)? What are your reasons for your preference, if any?


It all depends on the purpose of the story. Something that is meant to be a jump-on point or a wrap-up of points is best as a self-contained story. Breaking the stories into leads and back-ups can be used to support the narrative in a way that subplots would otherwise make cumbersome, such as the current "Enerjak: Reborn" arc. Multiple issues allow for more room to tell the same story.

Ultimately I've found I enjoy the two-issue arcs best. The part one/part two set-up flows easily for me and is comfortable to set up. I purposefully try to switch things up a little from time to time so that I don't get into a rut. Ultimately, however, it is the story itself that decides the format of its telling.

Question #8 wrote:Around what time did the destruction of Albion take place?


The Albion Massacre was during the "Tossed in Space" arc before the fall of Echidnaopolis. You will note that the attack craft in the story are similar to those used in the Angel Island invasion. This was a subtle visual cue to date the events.

Question #9 wrote:Are you going to add new villains(of your creation, not Sega´s) this 2008?


That's debatable. One could say "new" becomes a battle of semantics. Once 2008 (or at least the teasers) roll out, you'll see what I mean.

Question #10 wrote:From what is told in "Albion´s Shameful Secret", can Knuckles make any other(non-descendant I mean) echidna as powerful as Finitevus at will? Or that was only on his green-angry period?


Dr. Finitevus's transformation was a unique circumstance.

Question #11 wrote:Will you do anything on the tapestry depicting Robotnick and Super Sonic that was shown in RtAI?


The tapestry added a few wrinkles to the Echina Lore that I'd have to iron out. That will probably require getting hip-deep in echidna matters again, and we're not done with what we're already dealing with in "Enerjak: Reborn." I'd like to play with that at some point, but it definitely won't be for a long while.

Question #12 wrote:Will you ever do something along the lines of when Sonic and Tails went globetrotting to hunt down Ixis Naugus?


I've been kicking around some early concepts for something like that. The problem with a "Sonic & Tails do the World Tour" story is it removes them from the bountiful supporting cast. They're fun characters, but they can't carry the entire book on their own. If we ever do another "World Tour" like story we'll need to ensure some familiar faces are along for the ride.

Question #13 wrote:With giving no to as little spoilers as possible, what kinds of things will happen in the comic over the course of 2008?


It's really too early to say since we aren't too deep into the year yet - planning-wise. I definitely have an agenda, but that will see many tweaks as we work on it. There's already been some serious revision, and we've just begun the year!

What we will see in 2008 is more playing around with the extended rogues gallery and dealing with fall-out from "Enerjak: Reborn." While the arc ends with #184 there will still be stories and elements that stem from it for months, if not years, to come. I'll be trying to lay some groundwork for #200 as well - but that's all conjecture at this point.

Question #14 wrote:In Sonic X, are there any plans to look into the hidden bunkers and technology that Proffesor Gerald supposebly has stashed away all over the place, as seen in issue #7?


Doubtful. I'm not sure how much we're allowed to reference when it comes to Prof. Gerald, the ARK, or any of the related material. That, and the idea was presented by Joe Edkin, so I'd like him to get first crack at that plot line. I'll content myself dressing Eggman in silly costumes.

Question #15 wrote:For that matter, with the cartoon seemingly over and thus unlikely to explain, might we see how Eggman's ancestor's came to be on a seperate world from himself (or vice versa)?


Even with Sonic X finished, I don't know how keen Sega would be with us filling in that missing generation. SX isn't a very plot-heavy book anyway, so I don't think we'll be drudging that up anytime soon.

Question #16 wrote:Why did Shadow decide to start working for G.U.N.?


Shadow, G.U.N., and the entire United Federation is something I'd like to look at in greater detail at some point. Hopefully I'll get the chance.

Question #17 wrote:Is the fairly recent "lost story" in Sonic the Hedgehog Archives #5 canon? If so, does this mean NICOLE was ordered by Sally from who-knows-where and that Universalamander is currently trapped at molecular size?


Like most of the very early material, it's canon "to a point." All I can say is that the Big U is lost to micro-space for the foreseeable future.

Question #18 wrote:Will Rouge begin showing interest in Shadow like she has been in the games?


Possibly. I just got started on the Knuckles/Julie-Su/Rouge triangle, so I'm not keen to kill it off just to through her at Shadow. That, and judging from their story in "Sonic Rivals 2," I don't think the Knuckles/Rouge pairing has been dismissed from the Sega canon yet.

Question #19 wrote:In issue 182 how come Shadow's chaos energy was red instead of green like it usually is? Was this intentional or was it a coloring mistake?


The reason is two-fold:

First, it was to remain consistent with his Chaos Blast attack in the "Shadow the Hedgehog" game. Going off of memory, I believe Shadow's power was red when he dropped his inhibitor rings at the end of his story in "Sonic the Hedgehog"/Sonic06 as well.

Second, it was to help break up the monotony of all the green energy being thrown around. If both Enerjaknuckles and Shadow were green it would become visually boring and muddy.

Question #20 wrote:Basically, did you put effort into making Tails follow through with SEGA's original intentions, or was it accidental?


For once this was more accidental than anything else. Tails' path to greater maturity and self-reliance has always been a part of the book and I simply took up the torch and ran with it. The fact that Sega has seen fit to follow a similar course just makes my life easier.

Question #21 wrote:After the gathering, the seven Chaos Emeralds are formed in the Special Stage. The heroes are then later in possession of the white Chaos Emerald as they received it from Feist. The Sonic Rush Adventure tie in shows that Marine has the green Chaos Emerald. If the all of Sonic Rush Adventure has happened, and Sonic and Tails have returned to the main zone, then where are the Chaos Emeralds as of right now? Also, how did Marine get the green emerald? Can everyone just up and do special stages now?


The only thing known for certain right now is that New Mobotropolis has the Gray Chaos Emerald. The current fate of the Green Chaos Emerald and the general status-quo of Blaze's world is unknown right now. Hopefully I'll be able to answer all those questions soon.

Question #22 wrote:Has Mike ever dictated story/plot elements that you were then required to include in your stories, or is he more hands-off than that?


Mike has never forced a story upon me. He will, from time to time, present a concept to me. If I take a shine to it, he lets me run with it. The most recent result of such a tag-team session is the "El Gran Gordo" two-parter.

Question #23 wrote:If Aurora ever appears to other characters, will she look like an Echidna, or like one of their species?


That's something I'm grappling with behind the scenes. It has been established by Aurora herself that she is perceived as the species of the viewer for their own sake. The problem is that if we have multiple species present, a constantly shifting form would confuse the casual reader. That, and Aurora has already proven to not be totally truthful.

I've got ideas for Aurora's origin and for how the Neo Walkers will be presented when they show up again. But at this point it's all plans and ideas - nothing concrete.

Question #24 wrote:Is the original Metal Sonic on your dead-as-a-doornail list?


I consider most robots exempt from that rule since they aren't really alive and are easily replicated. A couple of notable exceptions would be the Metal Sonic that sacrificed itself to rescue Sonic and Tails from the volcano, and E-123 Gamma (presuming he's dead in the Archie canon).

Question #25 wrote:So far we haven't seen Big the Cat in the comic while you've been writing. Where do you see him in continuity right now?


Big and Froggy are wandering Mobius, care-free. They're such an unassuming pair that they wander from one region to the next, unnoticed, and quite content to be in their own little world.

Question #26 wrote:(General confusing over Guardian lineage)


There have been a few slips in the presented lore, so I have decided to go with the published Data File as the final word on the matter.

Thus:
Spectre > Thunderhawk > Sojourner > Janelle-Li > Athair > Sabre > Locke > Knuckles (> Lara-Su).
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Postby Oceanwind » Tue Dec 11, 2007 6:36 pm

How did Snively get his hairs back into his head after he got them back?
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Postby Bionic Slime » Tue Dec 11, 2007 6:38 pm

1. Rouge, and Shadow, Bean and Bark are all licensed game characters now playing decent sized parts in the comic. How do you decide which game characters to use more then others, by popularity? Because Bean and Bark barely anyone knew about for the longest time, or do you choose them by how much you think they will be able to interact with Sonic and the others?

2. We still have never seen/heard anything about Bunnie's parents or if she has any siblings, will we ever find out more about Bunnie's family and personal background?

3. Are there any plans or potential chances that Rob O' the Hedge will show up again, with or without Mari-an and their child?

4. Now that Nicole has become a physical manifestation, will she able to interact socially or personally more with characters and become more developed as a unique individual or remain just a "tour guide/computer" Freedom fighter?

EDIT

Due to someone already answering what my previous question 5 was.


5. With the Xorda and Black Arms fighting over Bem's planet, Wheelworld, will we possibly see the winner of that brawl returning to Earth/Mobius for a rematch with the Mobians that wronged either species?
Last edited by Bionic Slime on Wed Dec 12, 2007 7:51 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Postby Tonberry2k » Tue Dec 11, 2007 11:26 pm

I consider most robots exempt from that rule since they aren't really alive and are easily replicated. A couple of notable exceptions would be the Metal Sonic that sacrificed itself to rescue Sonic and Tails from the volcano, and E-123 Gamma (presuming he's dead in the Archie canon).


Would M and E.V.E. be on that list as well?
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Postby The Pezman » Thu Dec 13, 2007 9:20 pm

1. I've noticed a very big change from old Robotnik to new Robotnik. Old Robotnik was very clever and conniving in achieving his ends, both in the comic and SATAM show. He would swap in robot doubles, take advantage of amnesia, and, of course, use agents to frame Sonic and gain control of Knothole. He was a very methodical planner, and this really gave him the "evil genius" persona that made him so frightening.

Contrast that to new Robotnik, who has zero subtlety. Right from the start, he sends in his Shadow Bots to reclaim Mobotropolis. He takes over the Floating Island, launches a nuclear attack, and sends in agent after agent to destroy Knothole until he realizes (for some reason it takes him this long) that he can do it himself. Oh, and he shows up to teleport people away on occasion.

I understand that old Robotnik was trying to find the location of knothole, and that new Robotnik knows where it is and wants to destroy it. This could be used to justify the behavior change. But either way, new Robotnik is boring. Nothing Robotnik's ever done made me shiver with delight more than Endgame (with the satellite ploy to get the Freedom Fighters into space being a close second), but sending all your forces at somebody takes no cleverness at all.

If he's supposed to be the same as old Robotnik, he should have that Robotnik's cunning and flair for trickery, rather than just frontal assault after frontal assault. Can we see some more subterfuge on his part? This could work since Nicole's shields prevent him from destroying the city. And I did note that he tried to upload a virus in #180, but still, he was doing it in broad daylight with a machine to protect him rather than trying to do it sneakily.

2. I was never clear on this. The Destructix were hiding out in the warehouse in #117, and Robotnik showed up to roboticize them. But then the building blew up with Robotnik and the Destructix inside. Now in #135 the Robo-Destructix came back, but as we found out later, they were just shoddy duplicates.

I know that all robos were reversed to normal in #123, but weren't the robo-Destructix already dead? And if not, where were the real robo-Destructix being kept until they were deroboticized?

3. When, and why, did Robotnik actually lose the ability to roboticize mobians? And if he didn't lose it, why doesn't he continue to do it? Shouldn't he have realized by now that his prisoners have a nasty habit of escaping?

4. From a writing perspective, what was the point of making Mammoth Mogul the founder of the Ixis (or is it Isis?) order? It was brought up just long enough for Naugus to pledge loyalty, and then they were all captured by Robotnik. Now if they went on a quest to round up the other members, that would have been cool. If it was just a ploy to get Mogul and Naugus on the same team, I don't think all that was necessary. And if it's meant to be groundwork for a future story... well, how well will Mogul be able to command his old legion if he's been sapped of all his power?

5. You've taken some of my previous questions out of context. One was:

Where are Hershey and St. John? Don't think they've been seen since #134, when they were going on their top secret honeymoon mission for the king. Given that there's a new king and a new city, don't you think they should come back? Plus, I was looking through the older comics and realized how much I missed St. John's rivalry with Sonic. It's more complex and difficult than simple anger at an enemy. Although if they're not warring over Sally such a rivalry might be difficult to revive...


which became:

Where are Hershey and St. John?


While another was:

Power Rings (http://www.wizard-alcove.net/) is in the middle of a story where they make fun of the direction you've gone with the series. Now obviously, being a parody comic, they're taking the ideas to extremes, but what is your defense for cutting down on backstory and focusing more on action? I know that you always want to try and cater to new readers, but I think some of the comments in the latest issues which hearken back to Knuckles #7-9 prove you want to keep it old school as well. I personally would still like to see some more "history mysteries" like Isaac.


which became:

What is your defense for cutting down on backstory and focusing more on action?


This leads to, in my view, incomplete answers for the questions as I had framed them. I didn't just ask about St. John's whereabouts (I wanted to know why he hadn't been alerted to the king and city change, and more about a rivalry with Sonic), nor was it a simple statement about less story (I was curious as to your reaction to the Power Rings parody in which your avatar "Potto-izes" everything). Could you please answer questions as asked?
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Postby oca2007 » Fri Dec 14, 2007 4:33 pm

1) Is King Acorn (former) under the influence of Mammoth Mogul?

2) In the data files of Issue 179, it mentions that the New Mobotropolis power plant siphons radioactive energy from Robotropolis; with this being said, will Robotropolis become inhabitable again in the future?

3)Will you do a tie in to the upcoming Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity?

4) In the Sonic versus Tails arc, Max seemed way too moody and Queen Alicia looked sad/down/depressed. Can you give any insight on what is going on in the royal family?
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Postby Aurora_Redwinters » Fri Dec 14, 2007 5:57 pm

Can you clarify the time line for the events in Sonic 181-82 please? I am specifically confused with the events concerning Remington. Enerjak returns him back to normal, visits the refuge echidnas, and then zaps himself down to New Mobotropolis, leaving not a lot of time for Locke to visit him and get filled in on what happened with Albion and the echidnas there. It seems like it should have happened several days later, not several minutes unless I am missing something.
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