Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Zuda Review The Daemon Brethren: Advent of Chaos/ surprise no it's not a video game

The Daemon Brethren: Advent of Chaos is by Jeff Cerica another comic in Zuda April. It got 3/5 stars from me for a few reasons. Here is the synopsis:The Daemon Brethren are mere mortals but their bloodline has since existed for thousands of years. Their magic lies within the weapons they forge. With all the arsenal of weapons they possess none compare to the Daemons, the God like guardian beings they summon to aide them in battle. For centuries power ravenous beings have persistently tried to obtain the Daemons. It is for this reason that the Daemons are both a blessing and a curse for the five brothers, Landon Creo, Davian Creo, Jackson Rhey, Ethan Daniels and Leian Thompson. The brethren have faced and defeated countless foes but when Davian gets possessed by a mysterious being, the brethren turns to Ethan Daniels sister Alyra for help. When Alyra was born her late father swore that he would keep her out of the burdens that came with carrying the Daemons. So he requested for her to have a normal life. His request was granted and since then she lived her life not knowing her heritage. When Alyra witnessed her brother’s tragic death by Davian, the Daemon Brethren had no choice but to tell her everything. Luckily prior to his death Ethan secretly passed on his Daemons to Alyra. The Daemon Brethren must now teach her how to control her Daemons and let her embrace the secret that lies within her. She might be the only one that can save Davian and defeat the mysterious beings that call themselves the Sins of Chaos.

The character count of the title along leads to foreboding

It's already been commented on, but the title is too long. It just doesn't sound like a comic, it's like a video game. It's not my go to genre of choice, and the art and story wasn't the kind of read I can get into. The story seems over the top with actually too much information in the synopsis. Normally I'm all about the extra wordage, but not in this case. The art and writing isn't BAD, but it's not the kind of comic that's going to grab my interest. Not everything is for everyone, this comic takes more after a Anime cartoon. The characters when they're not involved in a fight with some demon creature look very stiff and uninterested in the problems their facing - large font screams doesn't equal into real emotion. Normally artists have problems doing involving fight scenes so this comic is just the opposite with very fluid fight scenes. Every page a fight scene would have gotten old, but at least you would have been playing to your strength. The story suffers from a common affliction in fiction stories with otherworldly elements, you need a lexicon to really understand what in the hell characters are talking about. The coloring goes from okay to impressive a C to a B, so it didn't hurt you it helped you. The letters were readable just a really small font. Except for the title lettering on screen 8 that wasn't good.

We control the horizontal, we control the vertical, except when we have technique difficulties...

Jeff mentioned on the Zuda message boards he sent back in the wrongly edited art work, a submit button screw up has happened before, and it's regrettable. The are some real stand out scenes throughout the comic though. I freaking loved screen 1. Nice establishing shot, loved the art here on the city scape (letters too small), but not too much of the text box thought balloons. The panel layout for the fight scenes was really impressive to me, my genre or not my genre. I was also intrigued by the pure blood Atlantean comment, and enjoyed the landscape in the background. The dialogue didn't have as much impact as it should have because I kept thinking Day-mon or, D-mon in my head. Along with the fact too much comic world specific lingo means you spend a good bit of your reading time trying to figure out what is going on. Screen 3 had a really nice layout, love the invisible effect, but the two brothers on here didn't seem that different to me. Maybe that was the point? The worst scenes are after the fight, when the characters looked so stiff, and the dialogue didn't help portray the emotion I would have expected in these scenes. Ending with a babe in a towel, not a bad idea for Zuda at all... Jeff should focus on the fight scenes that's where all the awesome is.

Some nifty examples from the comic to show you what I mean

Screens 3, 4, 5, and 6 the fight scenes have an awesome layout. The action really flows and one of the brothers powers (invisibility), is just handled so well it does draw you in more and more as you read on. The magical weapons is RPG videogame all the way, but it makes for some intense fight scenes. You get a nice design on the d-mon not day-mon bad guy they fight, and changing up the word balloons to show possession is expected, but you handled it well. Don't go too crazy on the creepy voice font, and the creator didn't. Jeff really kept me as the reader clicking through these awesome pages, until a vortex went off and that whoosh sound effect you didn't read was the best part of the story being sucked away.

You need to pull a Stuart Smiley and take a seat in front of a mirror

It wasn't my kind of story, but it has it's good points though. Jeff seemed to be maybe a little two hard on his self over on the Zuda message boards. Getting on Zuda is an accomplishment in and of its self. Do the comic you really want to do, so no matter where it ends up, you end up at least a little bit happy. With work on a shorter title, an easier to understand world (I'm not sure 8 screens is enough to set-up a world like this well), bigger fonts, and maybe even more pages of fight scenes, I don't doubt Jeff could make his way back on Zuda.

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