Let me first get the ‘biggie’ out of the way:
Q: Do you work for Bungie, and can I haz Recon?
A: No, I don’t – and no, you can’t. I’m just a fan of Bungie and of the Halo franchise like you. Reclaimer is merely a different approach to fan fiction to create a different view on the Haloverse. As such, I have no ability to grant you the much coveted Recon armor (I don’t even have it myself), and anyway – don’t you read the Bungie blog and know how futile it is to even ask for Recon?
Q: What was your inspiration for Reclaimer and how long did it take to come up with the concept and story from start to finish?
A: A long while back, somewhere around the time Halo 3 first hit store shelves, Sketch wrote a section called Build-Your-Own-Halo-Comic in a Bungie Weekly Update item showing off several screenshots taken on High Ground and spliced together into a comic book style layout. The challenge was issued for readers to take those screenshots and make some sort of short comic from them. To my knowledge, no one ever did, but the idea of using Halo 3 screenshots to write a comic stuck in my mind. I love to tell stories, I love the Haloverse, and I love comics and the visual medium. The idea for a comic just sat in the back of my mind for a couple of months and percolated while the beginnings of a story began to form. I knew I wanted something that didn’t center around the Master Chief and Cortana, so I needed a way to create a new hero – and the idea for an alternate Haloverse was born where the Master Chief still exists but is off doing his thing. This left room for other challenges, other villains, and other galactic crises. The Reclaimerverse is my take on a Haloverse, if events had happened a bit differently. It’s still basically the same place, but with some key alterations to open up a way for the Reclaimer to step forward as a new hero.
Q: What role do the Covenant play in the Reclaimerverse?
A: The Covenant do still exist, but in the Reclaimerverse, they currently have an uneasy truce with humanity. First contact was still made at Harvest, which was still glassed, as were a number of other human worlds. The difference here is that the Flood is much more numerous and more insidious than they are at first contact in the Haloverse. The level of threat they pose to humanity and the Covenant alike is so great that the Covenant were forced to put aside their campaign against humanity – though perhaps only temporarily – in order to join forces and fight back the infection before it can totally annihilate all other life.
Q: Have the events of Halo:Combat Evolved/Halo 2/Halo 3 taken place in the Reclaimerverse?
A: The Reclaimer storyline takes place just before the events of Halo: Combat Evolved. In other words, the Halo network has not been discovered – yet. However, due to the conflict with both the Covenant and the Flood, human technology has advanced that the Reclaimer program is actually the Spartan VI program, and the Blackhammer (a.k.a. Viper) program was the Spartan VII program. In future story arcs, I may well explore the events of the Halo video games, but with the twist of events from the Reclaimerverse.
Q: In Episode #68 the Reclaimer says that he killed the Master Chief. Is this true?
A: Let’s just say that the Reclaimer believes he killed the MC, and leave it at that. The Chief has always had luck on his side. Perhaps it was enough for him to survive that explosion.
Q: If the Flood are so threatening, why haven’t we seen more of them in the Reclaimerverse?
A: This is by design. The Flood are currently all engaged in other areas of the galaxy. The mastermind of these events has deliberately made sure to direct its plans to areas that will be Flood-free, the better to avoid any additional complications and variables.
Q: What program do you use to modify your screenshots?
A: I started making Reclaimer with Photoshop 6, but eventually I was able to upgrade to Photoshop CS3. Since I know that Photoshop is prohibitively expensive for most people, I also highly recommend using GIMP, which is an acceptable substitute.
Q: How do you make Reclaimer?
A: Fortunately, I’ve written up a detailed tutorial on creating a Reclaimer comic. Take a read-through on that, experiment with any or all of the steps to find your own style, and if you still have questions after that, feel free to use the contact form to send me your questions and I’ll do what I can to help.
Q: Can you make an official Reclaimer book/shirts/etc.?
A: I would love nothing more than to print some nice Reclaimer comic books and some classy t-shirts with images of characters and such. However, the Halo IP does still belong to Microsoft, and so I would need to acquire a license to produce such products. I’ve attempted to initiate contact with the Microsoft legal beagles a couple of times but have yet to hear back. Should something come about from this, I will make a big announcement.
Q: How do I get a cool avatar for the Reclaimer website?
A: This one’s easy. Just go to the Gravatar website and sign up. Then upload your image, tag it as Rated G or PG, and wait a few minutes for it to propagate across the web. Voila! Your very own global avatar that goes with you anywhere that Gravatar is used.
Have other questions you want answered? Step over to the FAQ thread on the forum and ask it!