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Creator Interview: End Game

end-game-main
end-game-main

Word of the Nerd interviews writer Andrew Hines about his Go Fund Me project End Game, a homage to the super hero comic book genre. The premier issue is set for release October 26th.

 

When did you first dream up the idea for End Game?
The idea came over time, actually. I’d built up a roster of characters over the past six years and then the story came last year. I’d finished reading Mark Waid’s Empire and Mark Millar’s Wanted. Both include the idea of the villains just getting fed up with losing and I thought that was an interesting idea to play with.

End Game Variant Cover
Ace Continuado’s Variant Cover

What is your contribution to the project as writer? Who else is on the creative team?
I was the first one on the project, as writer and essentially the lead creator, which includes character design. The creative team includes Daniel Kalban as a co-writer. My friend, Ji Jun, was our editor and we have a great art team. Our interior pages will be done by Marcio Abreu and colored by Audriano Augusto. We also have variant covers by both Phil Cho and my good friend, Ace Continuado putting his own spin on things. Phil did his own coloring and Ace’s cover was colored by Raymund Lee.

End Game Interior ArtMcKnight and Deathstalker on Marcio Abreu's inked cover
McKnight and Deathstalker on Marcio Abreu’s inked cover

What is the audience you are trying to reach that the work would appeal to most?
We didn’t write it with any particular audience in mind, except for ourselves as fans of the medium. We wanted to put in little bits of what we love about each of our favorite publishers, from DC and Marvel to Image, Vertigo and Dark Horse, without sacrificing the essence of our own characters and storyline. There are homages both, subtle and direct, to archetypal heroes like Batman, Invincible, Flash/Quicksilver, The Darkness and their villainous counterparts such as Madelyne Pryor, Ultraman and T.O. Morrow. We even put in something rarely seen these days, in that it’s largely centered in my hometown of Monterey, California, but the story will hot spots like Minneapolis and even rural areas of the South. We hope that it can hit a fairly broad audience that can appreciate it for the whole as well as the sum of its parts.

Who is your biggest influence?
Even as a writer, I’d say I’m equally influenced by writers and artists in this industry. Writers like Geoff Johns, Chris Claremont and Grant Morrison have always been able to pull me into a surreal, but somehow believable story. Others like Ron Marz, Paul Dini, James Robinson and Robert Kirkman have been able to mold interesting characters. Then, there are folks like Neil Gaiman, Alan Moore and Scott Snyder who can do both without letting the other half suffer. As far as art goes, my taste depends on the story being told. I enjoy art from folks like Rafael Albuquerque, Ivan Reis, Jim Lee, Francis Manapul and Jae Lee. Of course, there always the greats like Jack Kirby, Neal Adams and Darwyn Cooke. That’s it. Let’s end it there, or we could be here all day.

What do you like to read that you think our readers should also check out?
Aside from being a huge DC fan, I tend to go looking for graphic novels or epic trades of any kind. Saga, Faster Than Light, Identity Crisis, Shadow Walk, and Wildcats: Nemesis are good examples. As far as character, my absolute favorites include Nightwing, Kyle Rayner, Gambit, The Darkness, Kitty Pryde, Barry Allen, Kaine (as Scarlet Spider), and Hawkeye. I think these are probably the best-written characters in mainstream comics. As far as story arcs go, The Power of Ion from Green Lantern, The Trench from Aquaman, Volumes 1 & 2 of Superman: Earth One, the entirety of Matt Fraction and David Aja’s Hawkeye run and the Chris Yost and Ryan Stegman run of Scarlet Spider are examples of solid story arcs in modern comics.

What is your long-term goal as a creator? 
 My long-term goal is to make a career of writing entertaining stories and creating fully realized characters that my audience loves. I believe that Daniel and I agree on this one, but I’m at least hoping to create a universe full of quality characters, stories and a sizable fan base. Other than that, I know that Daniel and I have a book we’d like to get fully published involving the Batman Family and a few choice characters from the DCU.

End Game Interior Art page 8
End Game Interior Art page 8

 

What is End Game’s release date?
Our local release date is set for October 26, 2016. We do have a Go Fund Me page where folks can donate to get the book published, pre-order their own copy and get incentives at www.gofundme.com/endgame1.

How can readers access the first issue?
Aside from those who go through the Go Fund Me campaign, we will be selling digital copies online as of 10/26/16. Those in the Central California area can buy physical copies at Current Comics in Monterey and Salinas, Ca. We’re currently attempting to contact Diamond Distributors and others to get a wider distribution deal. We can answer questions from inquiring comic fans or others via Twitter at the following addresses: @McKnight57 – Andrew Hines @DanielKalban – Daniel Kalban.

 Like what you read about End Game? Make sure to pre-order your copy and get incentives at on the official End Game GoFundMe page


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About the author

Christopher Calloway

Christopher Calloway is the small press and idependent comic creator editor for Word of the Nerd. He is long-time comic book reader and collector who is passionate about comics and their creators.

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