dupdate 100222


The first part of this entry was actually written before last week’s post! It just didn’t get posted because of the thing with the TC4200. I was almost going to skip it again due to the thing with my WRT54G, but considering the break between part 7 and part 8, I figure this was appropriate.


Looking back (or rather, Google-searching the site), it seems like it’s been a long time since I last discussed the NW “reference collection”. It seems like I got the idea that I really did want such thing in d111, dated for November 2006! There’s another footnote in d113, dated just a few weeks later, suggesting that I actually started doing something and would like to finish it soon…

At any rate, this endeavor seems to have proven fruitful to some degree; for the past year or two, I have had a small biner full of copies of “stuff” relevant to the comic, including a couple character sheets and reference for location and ships, but generally fairly not comprehensive, and I didn’t use it that much. Hence, despite the slow evolution in “style”, you still get a slow evolution in the “content”. I think I’ve written about wanting to focus on making “content” more consistent, but I can’t find the entry for now…

That has led to what I consider a major overhaul of the reference collection. I have aimed to make it 1) consistent (with itself – some pages of the old reference collection contradicted themselves – ie, one picture of a symphonia class battleship didn’t look like another picture, etc), 2) digital, no more having to lug a silly binder around, 3) more comprehensive. This has resulted in “the big scan”, where I went through about five years of sketchbook and scanned out what I could use in the new storyline. That was about 100 pages total, and the whole experience made me realize just how slow effin scanners/scanner software is…

I have also redrawn a number of references which were previously inconsistent/incorrect. Each of the NW characters that’ll move forward into “season 2” get a new reference sheet, and I really made a point of drawing new references for ship classes like the Symphonia, Ultima, Enigma, etc, which have changed fairly drastically since their original 2002 form. The most time consuming thing to reference seems to have been the Aruku Reshivu. It has apparently taken me several pages of reference just to plan out one silly room…

So this week’s update actually consists of a couple of these new reference sketches. I have actually uploaded these before, but I do not believe I’ve posted ’em:

That last one is of the small ship that Lam has been using in the past couple pages, most visible here in d261. It’s actually another design that has its roots way, way back in elementary school, probably when I was in fifth grade. It’s interesting because the styling is ultimately pretty similar to that of the Aruku Reshivu, despite having been drawn many, many years in advance (and yes, the Reshivu is actually a recent design, not a rehash!). I’d post reference for the Reshivu, but there’s a few, and I’d prefer to save it for a single dump, maybe along with a post dedicated to said ship.

Anyway, you get the idea. Being of characters and stuff that are actually in the series right now, these are the most relevant; now I’m going to post a couple older pics, which, while less relevant, I thought were interesting.

This is a “map” of the Milky Way. It just shows the relative positions of earth (Sol on the map), Confederate League Systems 1, 3, and 53, the Orion belt and the Perseus arm. In this map, I’ve used a cartesian coordinate system, but J said that we should probably use a circular, or spherical one. I’m not sure which one I prefer; they both have their pros and cons…

Then we have a somewhat distorted “map” of Confederate League 1A, aka BKS “Jungle Planet”. When the first version of this map was done in 6th grade, this world was still known as “Comicland”, and for many years after, that’s what “CL” stood for. In this second (or maybe even third) revision, I’ve tried to consider plate tectonics, and I hope the geography is somewhat believable…


Last two pics are of the Confederate League capital complex on CL03A aka BKS “Main Planet”. This is another “thing” that was designed many, many years ago, possibly even before the original Bradly and Keno character designs. I was telling J how I really liked reusing old designs like this… it makes my childhood feel worthwhile and/or productive.

Ok, that’s it for now. Next week we get to hear about my WRT160N and maybe some of my other adventures on eBay…

dcomic 527


The following entry was written on November 18th, originally intended for the next week’s update. It is incomplete.

This week’s update is a further codification of BKS technologies, etc. J and I were talking about writing all this stuff down this time around, and I figured my entries (while not totally conveniently accessible) would be a great vehicle for this, especially for those weeks where I don’t have anything else to say. This week would be one of those.

So I’d first like to make a couple of corrections to my entry of d259.

First, is the matter of hyperspace travel. Hyperspace is an parallel dimension “under” the space-time “plane” of the “real” world, and there are different levels of hyperspace into which one can warp. With every subsequent lower level, you can go quadratically faster, but it takes a quartically larger amount of energy to get there. Once you get into hyperspace, it doesn’t take much energy to stay there, so hyperspace travel is really limited by the instantaneous amount of energy you can dump into the hyperdrive at the time of a “jump”. The amount of energy needed for a jump also depends on the mass of the object you’re pushing into HS, but mass only factors linearly.

HS0 is fairly easy to get into, and you can get about one lightyear to the day with regard to movement. This is good for moving really massive objects through HS, like… planets. HS1 gets 10 lightyears to the day, and is still fairly attainable. This is the most commonly used HS level; it takes a fair amount of energy to get there, but I could get from earth to Sirius in less than a day. HS2 is attainable by old BKS ships with higher-order reactors and a number of select craft with a high enough power to mass ratios. Messenger ships (as you can’t put messages through HS) use HS2, but even at 100 lightyears to the day, it’ll take about three years to cross the galaxy.

HS3 has been entered, but only by a handful of ships in all of BKS/CL history.

Ok, so that’s hyperspace. Now moving onto anti-gravity.

So with of hyperspace, we can start to explain some of the bigger feats of the BKS era. The old BKS capital comprised six planets held together, and this suggests that these worlds had to be moved into place – often from far away – hyperspatial distances away. With enough high-order reactors on a world, and a ship (or two) built specifically to dump huge amounts of energy into a hyperdrive (J calls it the Hand of God), you could move a world into HS0 (1 lightyear to the day) and keep it there. But this still makes it hard enough to do this such that you can’t do it on a day to day basis. On the flip side, HoG could also get itself into HS3 – 100 days across the galaxy.

dcomic 493


So this is actually day 4 of the aptly named Suck Week, but apparently I have the time to write what should be a rather long entry, so it’s probably sucking a bit less right now.

I got two anime mousepads I bought about a week ago on eBay so that kinda made my day a bit better. I was looking for a replacement for an Dell mousepad that was wearing out and while I really wanted something old school like my “IBM Global Network” mousepad, you just don’t find many old school mousepads out there. But you know, anime pads are cool too. The monkey mouse is a PoS by the way. It’s PS/2 and ball.

Ok, some more BKS stuff. These are all pictures that have been posted before, but I can give a bit more detail about each after my entry two (maybe three now?) weeks ago.


This is a mine on Confederate League 53A. The A in 53 refers to the fact that CL53A is the most inner planet in the CL53 system. CL06C, the old senatorial captical world, is the third most inner planet of the CL06 system and also the home planet of the Natives. Most inhabited worlds in the League seem to be an A, B, or C. At any rate, 53A is typical of a “colonial” world sort of environment: it’s located in an out of the way system and only brought into the League for its mineable resources.

It was probably a relatively low-numbered system in the BKS era as there is a BKs-era space elevator on 53A and there aren’t too many of those in general. The technology on these kind of wild-west style worlds is generally the most entertaining to depict as you get a nice mix of old, new, advanced, and primitive. There is actually another picture of this same mine, but it’s sitting in some book, unscanned.


Older BKS ships look like… well, ships. We don’t really know why this is in the context of the Confederate League (the ultimate reason is because these are the most entertaining to draw), but older BKS-era space transport resemble old land and sea based trains and ships. These ships are floating out in some space junkyard somewhere, stripped of their BKS-era high-order fusion reactors. J and I originally called them “Mr Fuel” units after the namesake “Mr Fusion” reactor/generator from Back to The future.

The reactors are an example of a lost technology that is still being used in the League. Significantly more powerful than the typical low-order fusion reactor, they are quite valuable and cannot be produced with the League’s current technology. Their numbers are dwindling as only a few of the remaining Founders know how to maintain them. The League maintains stocks of decommissioned ships just for the reactors. They are mostly still found in government and military ships, particularly the super-heavy BKS-era destroyers (kind of like how we only have nuclear reactors in our warships).

These ships themselves are actually redraws of ships drawn when J and I were in elementary school. They have Confederate dates ID’ed on them.


Don’t quite remember the premise of this one. One of the worlds with a BKS space elevator. Probably 53A again. 53A probably has the most drawings done of it out of all the Confederate worlds.


I quote myself: This one actually joins TIAIIS and Starcrossed in CL2236. Fleet admiral Doughty is in the center, he was the vice admiral of the Enigma task force in Starcrossed – apparently he has been promoted. Virginia Wolf, on the left of Doughty, is probably the captain of one of the Enigma’s ships, as is captain Tzui, on Doughty’s right. Doughty will be promoted again to the military staff in a number of years, and captain Wolf will eventually be the fleet admiral in his stead – just before the events of TIAIIS.

The Wolf family is supposedly this long-lived military family (I think they might even have some Founder blood in there); the captain of the Commander Cecil (that’s the BKS ship that’s been showing up in the NW storyline) is supposed to be one of the earliest Wolfs, Jade Wolf. He eventually gets a Commander class patrol ship named after him (the Commander Wolf), depicted in a short precursor to Starcrossed in which Captain Tzui (of Starcrossed as well) gets the Wolf pwned by terrorists in 2228/2229. That’s another historic relic lost, really; the Commander ships should have been built in the 1900s.

Virginia Wolf is like a kid prodigy who becomes fleet admiral (basically the highest-ranking Confederate military position, kind of like a member of our Joint Chiefs of Staff, except there is only one branch here – the Confederate “Navy”) at a ridiculously young age and dies at a ridiculously young age due to who knows what – maybe her arrogance or something. I’d love to write more about Virginia, but it just doesn’t happen. There’s the brother Lloyd Wolf who’s always living under his sister’s shadow, etc, etc.

Speaking of which, Doug and Yuzuki of Starcrossed probably settle down somewhere after the events of SC. Here in 2236, seven years after SC, William Doughty, who was a mere ship captain is Fleet Admiral and Yuzuki is no where in sight (implying she quit, started a family with Doug). Doug is still around probably working to support aforementioned family. There is another Yuzuki who appears with Lloyd in TIAIIS; she can be presumed to be the daughter of SC’s Doug and Yuzuki.

This one has turned out to be really rambly. Oh damn, there’s one more I just found:


This is actually on 24 x 18. That’s why it’s a photo and kinda distorted. Bringing the Wolfs and the SC crew together again in completely different circumstances, we have the Confederate Capital in 22XX. You can see the 1885, BKS-era Comet in the middle right which currently acts as a sort of Air Force One for the Condeferate League. The two buildings on the left are part of the capital administrative complex and the building behind those is the capital building itself.

CL03 is actually reasonably densely populated and a major city lies just north of the capital. The viewer is looking at the capital complex from the interior of a major transport hub. I’ve got a 24 x 18 of a section of the northern city, but I’ll probably put that up later. That’s all for today.

dcomic 491


So BKS 0, same as CL 0, is the start of the BKS/Confederate League calendar. In some arbitrary space-faring civilization somewhere out in the galaxy, something happens (we don’t really know what) that causes Bradly and Keno (members of the aforementioned civilization – we don’t actually have an official name for this race, I’ll call them “founders” for simplicity’s sake) and a number of their kind to arrive in the Milky Way 1600 years later. That’s not to say their journey took 1600 years; they just arrived 1600 years later.

A primitively industrialized, humanoid race in the Milky Way (not the one we know as humans) was “civilized” through alien intervention, eventually forming the basis of the BKS Empire. Officially, the start of the Empire is BKS 1770, but by that time it already covered a significant portion of the galaxy (something like 10%?). Standards of living rose with increased technological developement and penetration, and the empire continued to expand as new worlds and resources were brought in.

Somewhere around 1850 marks the height of the BKS Empire in terms of technological capability. There must have been some sort of major conflict during this period, as 50 Symphonia class and 15 Ultima class very-heavy battleships were built between 1800 and 1850. Another 15 Dogma class ships are built at the end of the 1800s. By 1900, the Empire probably covers something like 30% of the galaxy, but some factor – possibly whatever conflict it faced in the middle of the 1800s = has stopped its expansion. As its boundaries start to shrink, colonial worlds are cut off from the core and ultimately “lost” for the time being.

Furthermore, as the number of Founders shrink relatve to the native population, Bradly and Keno (presumably still the leaders of the empire) decide to hand over imperial control to the native population. Thus marks the start of the Senatorial era, starting from BKS 1889. It proves to be somewhat of a bad idea, as the Senate proves itself barely capable of running the still very large empire. The state begins a rapid decline for the next twenty years. Suddenly, in 1912, fueled by the loss of the old BKS capital (due to a technological failure), the Empire finds itself in a civil war, with a Conservative faction supporting the few remaining Founders and a Progressive faction supporting the Senate.

The senate somehow manages to build another group of super-heavy battlecruisers as “proof” of their capabilities, winning a lot of supporters. A major push by the Conservatives is repelled in 1920, and a short truce follows. In 1926, the Conservative faction soundly defeats the Senatorial forces and a compromise, a peace treaty, gives birth to the Confederate League. Another entity, New BKS, is also established at this time, but little is known about it (I’m actually series here – this is J’s faction but he hasn’t really developed it).

Victory comes at a high cost. A lot of documentation is lost in Senatorial dis-information warfare. History of the empire and of the Founders before 1900 is suddenly very scarce. A lot of technological know-how is also lost. Legends and lost-technology come into existence. The number of Founders left in the system is next to nothing. Even Keno is presumed dead, though his brother, partially through popular support, assumes the role of the chair of the Confederacy.

The next two hundred years sees a continual, slow decline in all aspects of the Confederate League, despite it being a period of peace. Much of the League’s BKS-era military equipment is too expensive to maintain. Some of the original Symphonia class ships continue to roam the galaxy; nonetheless, the League’s control over the various ex-BKS worlds is nonetheless limited. The Confederate decline has spurred discontent on some worlds. Lack of resources has meant that recent internal conflicts in 2221, 2229, and 2248 have been brutal and protracted. The Confederate “present” is CL 2051.

Obviously we have some pictures for this update, but the catch is that they’ve all been posted before. Conceivably they’ll make a bit more sense now.


Senatorial Capital, BKS 6, 1885. The BKS capital is originally located at BKS 1, “main planet”, but is moved to BKS 6 during the senatorial era, probably due to the progressive party’s attempt to break from the old reign. When the empire dissolves into the Confederate League, the capital is moved back to BKS 1, which is re-numbered Confederate League 3.


BKS Abyssia and BKS Materia, Confederate League 53A, ex-BKS 53A. Two major battles during the civil war were fought over BKS 50 and BKS 53. As such, these colonial worlds are littered with the remains of old BKS battleships. The Abyssia and Materia are both members of the original 50 Symphonia class ships.


Bradly and Keno, BKS 2, 1912. BKS 2 “jungle planet” is the base of the conservative faction throughout the civil war. It is later renumbered as Confederate League 1, as remains the industrial center of the Confederate League. It is also hosts the headquarters of the state-owned production and transport service BC Inc.


Bradly and Keno. Apparently the lifespan of a Founder is something like ten times the length of a human. Bradly has been alive since before the creation of the Empire and is only recently planning to step down as chair of the League. The lifespan of a Native is probably on par with that of a human – something like 100 years.


Senator Kaska. Originally a [disciple?] of Keno. He is a native. Eventually becomes the chair of the senate; he is probably the most powerful person in the galaxy during the civil war. Eventually gets shot by Keno as depicted in Reflection. As a side note, Reflection should also make a bit more sense after this entry. Reflection implies that, during the civil war, before the 1926 Conservative offensive, Keno went around assassinating key members of the senate. It is also mplied that the loss of leadership of the Progressive faction effectively helped the Conservatives win the war.

Starcrossed also gets a bit more background with this entry (though many of the names of places are still going by an old system). The first battle takes place during the 2221 conflict and the rest of the story takes place during 2229. The lack of Confederate military firepower is evident with the destruction of the Ultima squadron and the heavy-carrier itself by rogue forces. As the original of her class and just shy of 300 years old, the destruction of the Ultima could also be seen as the destuction of a historic entity.

Ok, that’s it for this entry, maybe more BKS/CL ramblings in the next entry.

dcomic 490


Have to upload a new batch of comics after this one. Anyways.

Back in d214 I went on about the “the first real appearance of BKS miscellany” in 484. As early as d63, I’ve written about connecting the Directorate story with what I called the “Confederate League saga”, but I don’t think I’ve ever given any concrete detail as to what BKS or the Confederate League actually is. There will be a brief summary either built into the last part of the story or added as a postscript, but I’m going to take an entry or two to put it in words. I admit this is somewhat of a tangent partially written for the sake of nostalgia, but it’s important to me and never been put into words.

It’s also psuedo-important to the story – hell, almost every story I’ve ever conceived.

In j207, J posted The Adventures of BKS, Tenth Anniversary Redux, which depicts the original comic in a slightly more structured and sensible fashion (not that it makes much sense to begin). While this original comic may be the first time BKs or anything BKS related shows up on paper, the actual saga – like the offline (ha, as if we knew what that meant in 1998!), off-paper saga begins a bit before.

Now my memory is really quite hazy back here, but I won’t say J and I were on terribly good terms ’til sometime in the middle of third grade. Must have been something to do with paper boats, as we were the only two people in our grade who could figure out how to do this thing. Anyways, I recall the two of us sitting around this puddle and re-acting a Calvin and Hobbes strip involving a Marsha and Bradley. This is the birth of the character Bradly (yes, this is now the proper spelling; I have stuck with my original mis-spelling and run with it. I believe it is the same case for Keno) who shows up in the Episode 1 and has actually appeared a few times on NW over the past couple years.

Over the next six months Bradly and Keno turn into these cyborgs with this BKS entity backing them and they run around in their tin-foil boats (I would still have these if someone didn’t effin throw ’em away – I don’t have pictures either as digital cameras were like SSDs in 1998 – expensive) from winter to winter and puddle to puddle. They got this fictional world attached to them (or maybe they got attached to this fictional world) which was developed through word of mouth, the comics, or other drawings.

And then in our last year of elementary school I made J mad and the thing kinda fell apart. Or it’s more like the thing was in pieces to start, and I picked them up and arranged them in a way that J didn’t like. Touchy subject still for me, but J gives some insight in episode episode6; even if my description doesn’t suggest it, J’s really not to blame here, it really was my fault. Nonetheless, we ultimately gave it some thought and eventually consolidated the world of BKS (though I admit – some of the technologies are still somewhat fuzzy).

This rationalized universe forms the foundation of what I now call the Confederate League saga, basically a continuation of this universe’s timeline. While I’d say most of the recent developments have been made by me (I’d say I’m more needy of a kind of framework to build on and build off than J), I still hesitate to make unilateral major additions to the BKs universe. Nonetheless, this framework basically supports all of the short storylines I’ve done over the past couple years – from the original 193 to 200 story to the current Directorate storyline. So you kind of get a grasp on how important this is to, at the very least, my drawing.

Anyways, that wasn’t as detailed of a background as I originally intended, but you kinda get the idea. Next time I’ll actually start detailing the content of this BKS universe. As a sidenote, I’m impressed that J’s actually been doing a 4koma everyday (depsite the varying quality of the humor). Technically it’s like 6 or 7 times his regular volume. Good job.